Another busy week

The first batch of onions have sprouted. It’s time to get gardening, between rainy spells and frost.

We’re planning to drive Gemini in the St. Patrick’s Day parade in town. I hope the weather cooperates and lots of people show up.

The cart has been stripped down and repainted for the event, and new tires too.

Gemini had a trip to the vet this week for shots, a teeth cleaning, and a check up. He’s officially 10.3 hands tall, which means 47″ at the shoulder. The vet says he could live until he’s 50, but not unless he loses weight, like about 100 pounds! So a little riding will help, as long as we don’t overdo it. Shetlands are the strongest equine for their size, able to carry half their weight on their back, and pull 2 to 3 times their weight in harness.

Ponies were often used to pull governess carts, which were basically wheeled baskets for safely taking children on outings. Not really what we’re looking for, but before we head to the big auction this April in Madras, OR, it’s a good idea to get familiar with horsedrawn vehicles of all kinds.

We’re also on the lookout for a pasture pal for him. There might be a suitable pony in Snohomish, and we’re hoping to meet her this weekend.

Newt and Magnus have learned to declare a truce long enough to share the chair for a nap.

And for those of you (you know who you are) who wondered if a headless chicken really does run around, here’s a video from our broody hen butchering day. (Actual chicken killing, so not for the faint of heart). This hen was done with her laying career and causing problems by breaking other hen’s eggs, so she got made into the most fabulous dinner tonight – Chicken soup with spaetzle. Ours was a little more rustic and robust than this recipe though. Serious comfort food!

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5 thoughts on “Another busy week”

  1. We spent summers on our grandmother’s farm as children. Our job was to catch the chickens after the heads were cut off. LOTS of exercise involved with that job.

    I’ve oftentimes wondered why people keep horses/ponies. Seems like they’re more expensive to keep than they’re worth.

  2. For most people equines are an expensive hobby/pet/luxury item. They get used about as much as a boat, and probably cost about the same 😉
    One part of the mission/business plan we’re wwriting up for Seven Trees involves using draft ponies they way our ancestors did. A lot of people lived on small holdings that couldn’t support even a pair of full-sized draft critters, so the native ponies filled the bill. Packing, hauling, light agricultural work, and pulling a cart/carriage to market were all practical uses for these little guys. And they are very cheap to keep. Hard feet only need trimming every couple of months, they can live well (and get fat) on yard grass and a little winter hay, they are sturdy & healthy and live a long time.
    As fun as it is to ride, having a full-sized horse or 2 would be silly for Seven Trees. But Pony Power….now we’re talking!

  3. Nice onion set 🙂 Is the garlic peeking out as well?
    I do have to invite myself for a pony cart ride one of these days…

  4. Nice onion set 🙂 Is the garlic peeking out as well?
    I do have to invite myself for a pony cart ride one of these days…
    If you had a spot at the local farmers market to sell eggs and used pony at the stall after bringing the eggs there on the cart – my bet is you would sell out pretty quickly with that advertisement.

  5. The garlic is going gang-busters now! I just planted another batch of onions, plus some chard, spinach & bok choi.

    I’m hoping we’ll find an even better cart at the big swap meet in April. A little wagon with some cargo room in back would be awesome 😉

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