Sunday, September 15, 2019

In the Light of the Silver Moon

Keeping children busy these days can pose a challenge for some parents with busy schedules and plenty to do, but for my granddaughters, there is always something going on that keeps this grandma busy. Yesterday I was recruited to haul rabbits to a show, so I packed up my night bag and spent Friday night with them since we had an early drive to Cheyenne, Wyoming, an hour away.

Ellie loaded up the four rabbits in the back of my Edge while her mother and sisters loaded up mom's car with all of the gear and lunch.

And we off.

The first show that I went to with Ellie, I nearly froze my toes off, but Saturday warm and a nice breeze blew through the rabbit building, still I kept my jacket on all day.

It was at that show that Jennifer bought a very tiny baby rabbit for Lily.

Rabbits came from all over, some crossing the state lines from Nebraska and Colorado. Rabbit Competition is a big deal. People love their bunnies. People of all ages.

 Not a 4-H sanctioned show, it's sponsored by the Rabbit Association (not the official name)

This year was Lily's first year with her Dutch Black named Midnight.  She knows what she is doing.

Mom made the girls' aprons to protect their clothing from rabbit hair. Simple aprons made out of kitchen towels.

The mosaic edited the first photo showing mom tying Lily's apron on. Next Lily grooms Midnight to get him ready for to show. The rabbits are called by breed and put into show cages. The judge takes the rabbit out of the cage and examines it, commenting as he spreads it out, examines it, making note of its strengths and weaknesses then he hands Lily the tally sheet, declaring Midnight the winner of his class. He was the only Dutch in this class, a fine rabbit none the less. 

And a kind man who posed for a photo. By the end of the show Midnight had won every class that he showed in, four blue ribbons

and a purple food dish.

Ellie's rabbits are dwarf red Rexes, Dawn and Mavrick.  Rare in color, so they always win for their color and coat, but they are not perfect rabbits, in fact the buck has been disqualified for being over weight, so Ellie put them both on diets this summer and an exercise program and they both lost enough weight to be competitive. Now they wait to be judged.

And here are Ellie's show results:

Eldorado is a Hymalian buck, a true champion. He comes from a Rabbitry that won all of the top prizes for the day. He will soon be a father.

Here are some random rabbits that I had to photograph. I love the second one, a lop eared rabbit. Rabbits come in so many shapes, colors, sizes. Which one would I choose, were I too choose?

I don't know.

Back at home, the Head Gardener and I drove out a friend's farm late in the day so that I could photograph the sunset at the irrigation pond. Upon arriving we caught sight of pelicans sleeping late. 

End of day as the sun sinks behind the Rocky Mountains is my favorite time of day as sun casts the last of its light, making the world look warm and golden. I love seeing cattle in the fields.

The alfalfa field has been cut and the corn tassels reflect the sun. Soon the corn cutters will run.

We took Brody. He's still a shy boy, not sure at all of the world around him and he takes his time adjusting to new things.

He's a handsome lad, don't you think?

Soon he relaxes and begins to explore; still on a leash, we don't trust him to let him free.

 He's a bird dog, a German Short Haired Pointer, that is supposed to flush the birds and retrieve them. We don't know if he likes water. Some short hairs don't and for sure he doesn't like loud noise, like gunshots. He may not hunt. That's okay.

Black birds have amazed me since my childhood. I grew up with farm ponds and cat tails and Red winged blackbirds.

The pelicans awake when we startle them and float away on the breeze stirred water.

Yes, we have pelicans in Northern Colorado. Lots of them. Most bodies of water have pelicans. 

Its a quiet sunset tonight. No clouds to absorb  the colors.

In the east the moon begins its journey. Full and silver, mysterious, now being invaded once again by earth man's desire to know what's on the moon. Who cares, I ask?

Back at home with less light, I take one last photo the moon.

It was a full week. 

How was your week?

Thanks for joining me. I'll see you over at Angie's for Mosaic Monday

Monday, September 9, 2019

End of Summer

As summer winds down, we seem to move at a slower pace. The last cutting of hay is now baled and stored. We don't have to worry about rain ruining any party or flower, or precious hay.  It was a an intense summer; now we can relax. Have you noticed a difference in the late summer, pre fall days? There's a stillness in the air. The birds seem quieter. They no longer call to each other trying to attract a mate, or scold their fledglings. The breeze seems softer, gentler, and the sun's not so intense. A nice way to ease into fall.

We woke early to a light fog over the Garden Spot. We love the fog here because it is a rare weather occurrence. We knew, though, it would soon burn off as the sun lifted itself higher in the sky.

A walk through the garden gave me a chance to enjoy the last of the summer blooms. The dahlias have been slow to bloom and not quite as healthy as they have in the past. Frankly the vegetable garden was not the best choice to plant them. You won't see many photos of the garden either because it was so badly neglected this year. We'll do better next year.

This was a poor year for the roses, too. Not enough water. We have fought with Brody all summer. He takes great joy in lifting the sprinter heads out of the front garden. We hope that he will soon outgrow the urge to steel the stakes that hold the tiny sprinklers. If it wasn't the lack of water, the heat also has taken it toll on the flowers. The court yard gets full afternoon sun, making the heat more intense when it is absorbed by the brick walls of the house. We do our best.

Sunflowers always have a special place here at the Garden Spot, more so this summer as they were grown for the wedding. Now, they are on their way out. Good news? They will be back next year.

Does the black top look any blacker on the driveway? You probably wouldn't notice. We had it resurfaced. More accurately, the cracks were filled, the bad spots repaired, and seal coat applied, making it look new and pretty.

Veteran's Honor blooms her heart out, still bedazzled with droplets of last night's rain, this is one of the last blooms of the season.

I'll miss this lovely lady, too.

These girls always bring such joy to the garden, even the wild, errant ones that take up residence without permission or tending. They thrive where planted.

Rudbeckia newly planted grew nicely. I fought weeds all summer, especially the milkweed. They will all fade soon, but I look forward to seeing them again next summer--not the milkweed.

They boys are little less active. They are out for their mid morning snack than as it warms, they will return to their stalls where a cool breeze blows through the barn and the flies are less likely to annoy them.

Sundance, lame as ever, seems to be doing bit better now that he gets a few drops of CBD oil twice day with his warm mash. While the elixir won't cure or heal his lameness, it does help with his pain--we hope. 

More sunflowers. The pale yellow one is one that was started in the green house and transplanted. In fact so was her neighbor. The the green house girls finally did take off after the wedding. I look forward to  planting more next summer. They were real beauties.

I always plant zinnias is the vegetable garden to add a spot of color. This year I didn't. This one, among others, came up on her own. That's the nice thing about self seeders. 

A lovely dahlia. We will dig up the tubers and replant in a better spot next year. 

Seemingly playing peak-a-boo, this one will be fully bloomed tomorrow.

So this really says it all about the garden spot: A blue sky, the horses, lots of sunflowers.

My parting shot: sunflowers finishing their life's cycle, weeds hanging on to the last of summer, and me behind the camera enjoying the moment.

I hope that you enjoyed my moment. 

Thanks for visiting.

If you get a chance drop by Ann's Dollhouse Dreams--just for fun.

And don't forget Mosaic Monday with Angie. You'll find me there, too.

Just a Hint of Spring with a Dose of Cuteness

It's not safe to say that Winter has made his exit. He's still hanging around waiting to surprise us. We know the routine: freezing ...