Archive for June, 2008

It’s showtime!

Thursday, June 12th, 2008

Brandi Thiessen and Trisha Willsher have been recruited to campaign the stallions in hand and driving this summer. We have a full show season planned. Marshhaven Farm welcomes Trisha’s 5 year old daughter Kaylee to our show team, as she will be showing Kristull Jehani Texas Lady in both junior showmanship and lead line classes.

It’s not often you find a five year old mare and a five year old child that click, but so far these two seem to get along, especially under the watchful eye of mom. It’s quite entertaining watching Trisha “tuning the pony in” on a 14″ saddle.

The attention span of 5 year olds, horses or humans is not quite a full day of showing.

The dynamic duo had their debut in the ring this past Sunday at the Hasting Lake Riding Club show. Adorable would be an understatement.

As the pony’s owner I dont’ know if I enjoyed watching Kaylee in the ring, or mom’s reaction to the showmanship class. Trisha was so focussed on Kaylee, she didn’t see how much the judge liked Texas. As the placings were called in reverse order the look on Trisha’s face was a study in how am I going to tell her “you don’t win everytime”. But Kaylee came out of the ring with a red ribbon, the first time in!

It didn’t take her long to get the hang of showing. At the end of the lead line class, all the entrants were declared winners and told to collect their first place ribbons at the outgate. Kaylee was almost in tears, as they didn’t call her number.

In any case the unpredictable weather we have been experiencing held off and it was a great day for showing horses.

Here are the pictures. Have a look and decide for yourself if “too cute” does not apply.

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2009 Models Now in Production

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2008

If anyone had told me I could have this much fun after teaching and a whole month would elapse before I wrote a blog, I would have looked at them in disbelief.

Anyway, between foaling, breeding, trade shows, foolishly taking 2 mares to the coast, weather, etc., life on the farm has been on the dead run, flat out.

We had our last foal! Sunny”s (M3 Soleil’s) filly arrived at 3:38 a.m. Monday, June 2. This is her first filly in her 5 foal history. We got to be there! It was our first attendance at a birth! Some of you experienced breeders will be raising your eyebrows, but we’ve crossed our fingers and made the decision to let the mares work with nature with minimal interference from us.

Sunday night, I was pretty sure she was going to foal, so I stayed up until 2:00 am to check her. She has been a daytime foaler, so at 2am, I spread straw, thinking daybreak was going to see her in labor. By the time I had that done, she had separated herself from the other girls, so I parked myself far enough away so I could put an indirect flashlight beam on her without disturbing her. By this time she was up and down, her water broke and she was in the early stages of labor. By 3:30 her labor wasn’t progressing despite hooves and muzzle showing.  I went back to the house for a knife to cut the amniotic sack and wake Glen to see if he wanted to join me.

Things moved pretty quick after that.  I think what was more revealing than witnessing the miracle of birth was watching the interaction of the other mares.  They made sure their foals stayed outside a 20m perimeter and they took turns nuzzling the laboring mare and then checking on the foal before Sunny got up; each one of them one at time.  What a lovely support group.

It’s really hard not to interfere with the baby’s struggles to get up.  Glen held me back and said only if she got too near the fence.  I don’t know why, but we were already fairly certain it was a filly.  Because of the attention of the other mares, she had a few uncertain minutes of “Are you my mother?” until Sunny stepped in and gently herded her away.  At that point we decided it was 2 hours until real morning and we’d check again then.  If she seemed strong and vital we would be fairly certain she had nursed and we’d be on the look out for meconium in the field and staining on her bum.

I had my “D” names ready, even though the horses are ineligible for NA KWPN registry, the stallion is NA KWPN.  The front runners for a colt were D’Artagnan, D’Accord, Delacouer and Desperado; a filly Debutante, Demoiselle or Desdemona.  But I always second guess myself and at 5 am wondered what I was doing reading the dictionary.  The last word I saw before I said “enough” was Dharma.  I recalled the sit-com of “Dharma & Greg” while I read the definition.  In Buddhism, “Dharma” is “the Law”, other Eastern Asian meanings are “generous virtue” and “truth”.  Since daddy is Pheasant Ridge’s “Justice” (Cocktail x Wolfgang) my last thoughts were “perfect”.  So meet Dharma MH.

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Pretty nice filly, eh?