Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Up Before Dawn

For some reason, I woke up at 3:00 this morning and could not for the life of me go back to sleep.

The farrier was supposed to come first thing this morning to trim all the horses' hooves. So since I was awake anyway, I decided to get up before dawn to get everything ready: ate breakfast while waiting for the sun to come up, then went out to feed and water the animals early, put halters on the horses that didn't have them on, and started cleaning hooves.

Then the farrier called to say he'd hurt his back and could he reschedule for Saturday? Of course we're not going to say "No" to that. But I was grumbly to have gotten up so early for no real reason, just the same.

I managed to do a photo shoot yesterday and got good photos of most of the rest of the dolls I'm selling on EBay to raise money for hay.

Then I spent part of today packing up and mailing several that I sold in the past few days and writing up descriptions for the new ones that I'll be posting for sale on Friday (I wait until Friday, because sales are much more brisk over the weekend). I've included a few photos here, because I think they turned out pretty well.

It's tricky, because there's one specific place that has a nice background for taking photos, and it only gets decent lighting for a couple hours a day. So I always have to be ready for that time, and hurry through the photos before the light fades away.

Out of curiosity, I just added it up: so far, in the past three months, my EBay sales have brought in nearly $5000 to pay for hay and bills!

That's not bad for just selling stuff that we already had lying around not being used... mostly my Franklin Mint dolls and a few other valuables, plus Ken's old Sentra.

Of course, our animals eat more than $2000 worth of hay per month, so the Ebay sales are just kind of helping us tread water until some of the horses sell. But it's way better than NOT having that extra money!

Our neighbor Bob finally had a chance today to come by with his tractor and scrape the manure out of the main part of the front paddock for us. With so many horses living there, it accumulates too quickly for me to clean out by hand, so every now and then we hire Bob to remove it with his tractor.

He didn't quite have time to finish yesterday, because he had somewhere else to go, so he'll be back tomorrow. We may have him scrape out the sheep paddocks too while he's right here.

I do have to clean the weanling paddock and Senter's paddock out by hand soon though. It's been accumulating too long. The weather is mild enough now that I'm not going to be risking heat stroke to be outside working, and the fact that it hasn't rained in forever means everything I need to muck out is dry and (relatively) light.

Actually, things are beyond simply "dry" now. Our fields and lawns are scorched and dead. Any little breeze or an animal walking by stirs up clouds of dust that hang in the air like mist.

We are so lucky that our well is good. We've had no shortage of water to fill the horse and sheep troughs.

And we are so lucky not to have had any fire problems in our area. The whole county is so dry, there'd be no stopping a fire if it got started. So I'm very thankful it hasn't been an issue.

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