Wednesday, December 30, 2015


This is what effective begging looks like.  I think it's Justin, but can't be sure....LOL

I'm sorry to be such a whiny wimp, but 16 degrees this morning is just the latest in a long line of early morning surprises....!!!  It is nice and sunny this afternoon, and looks lovely, BUT, I'm inside.  I have stuck my head out a couple of times, and looks can be deceiving, so I think I'll just stay in here.

John as usual is out and about.  Tony and Mike, came out from Tucson today to work some more on the shelters.  They've really been a lot of help with doing some of the work that gets forgotten in the daily routine of crisis management.  Right now John is busy cutting wood, which we use to heat with and building race cars to get ready for the new season which starts the 5th of February.  Between those 2 "jobs" and trying to keep all the water pipes and hoses from freezing, not much building or remodeling would get done until spring, if it wasn't for the guys coming out.  Jenny is working today and I guess they got bored.   

Yesterday John did put an engine hoist together.  He has to exchange the engines out of two Kias, which was going to be a lot of fun with just his tractor.  His hoist is in at our son's in Tucson, and probably would never make it back home anyway, so he might as well get another one.  I'm sure he'll need it in the future.  

We've been a little worried about Penny, because of the cold.  John noticed she was shivering a few mornings ago, when he was putting everyone in their pens.  She's had a broken jaw and probably was born with something like spinal bifida.  She has a hunched back and her hind legs aren't right, although she gets around just fine.  But for some reason the cold seems to be bothering her more than the others.  

Penny and her best friend, Coquette

Over the years we have had others, generally older ones that needed a blanket when it got cold.  The problem we have is, if we put a horse blanket on one, they have to stay in the pens, because of the brush and mesquite trees we have.  I'm sorry to say these donkeys are so use to being loose on the property if we make them stay in the pens, it's like we are torturing them, for no reason.

John has been putting a microfiber blanket on her in the morning when she comes in the pen for breakfast and leaves it on until she goes out.  We tried putting the blanket on overnight one night.  Took John quite awhile to find it the next morning, who knew they roamed so far at night.  It was all the way over by the north fence line in Burroland.  That morning when she came in, we put another blanket on her and Saddik the dog promptly grabbed it and hauled it under Doug's RV.  That's where we know to look for things like missing gloves, towels or anything else that looks "interesting".  

We were surprised he got it off her, she hates him with a passion.  One afternoon when it finally warmed up enough so I ventured out Penny was as usual begging for cookies.  She doesn't like people, but she will put up with us as a necessary evil, for treats.  We make sure she gets more than the others, she probably hasn't had a lot of goodies in her life.  

Most of them love the fruity Tums.  The only time they get them is when I bring the bottle out of the feed room and sit on the porch.  For some reason she was by herself, usually Coquette is glued to her side.  So I got the bottle and, sat down and we had a love fest.  Well maybe I did, she was just in it for the Tums.  So here comes Saddik, he's still enough of a puppy to lumber into just about anything without thinking of the consequences.  As I said she doesn't like him, but she wasn't about to run off.  He's bound and determined to see what she is getting and she was bound and determined he wasn't.  What gets me is he's been here long enough to read donkey body language.  She started out, ears in "not happy" position.  Then she went to hind legs just rising in place a couple of inches.  No reaction.  Then she started getting into position to send him somewhere he probably wouldn't want to go.  That's when I got up, and put the Tums back in the feed room.  I would imagine he did a fly-by, grabbed the blanket before she could react and never slowed down, because if he had been there for any amount of time, she would have nailed him, if she could.  

So between the brush and trees, and the dog, she's not going to be able to be blanketed at night, unfortunately.  I am making sure she has all the mush she will eat.  I'd like her to have a little more meat on her bones, but she will only eat, what her body needs I guess.  And with her back and legs she doesn't need to carry more weight than necessary.  Sure hope it warms up soon.........!!!!

Thursday, December 24, 2015


Well Christmas has finally gotten here after months of advertising.  I don't recognize the Christmas of my childhood, and the circus it has become.  I guess I've become a Scrooge, but I doubt that the children today get the thrill children of an earlier era had when they got to see a department store Santa.  There weren't that many, I lived close to a big city, and he only hung out at Sears and Roebuck and Montgomery Wards.  So getting to see him and tell him what you wanted for Christmas was very exciting.   One year while I was waiting in line to talk to him, Mrs Claus came up and asked me my name.  When it was my turn to go up, Santa called me by name.  To say I was enthralled at the idea that Santa knew my name is an understatement.  I don't know if Santa was wired or Mrs. Claus wrote it down, but it's still a wonderful memory, many years later. 

I remember going to midnight Mass with friends, although I am not Catholic and appreciating the grandeur celebration of  the birth of Christ.   I'm not a religious person, but that doesn't stop me from respecting beliefs of others.  I am sad to hear and see so many differences of opinion on what is or shouldn't be Christmas.  I guess it's that old Libertarian thought process, why does the beliefs of others have to even be discussed or destroyed by anyone?  I would have no problem with a pagan ritual on one side of me and all the pomp and circumstance of hundreds of years of religious ritual on the other.  

We're not doing anything special, John has had it easy all these years, I've always been of the contention, that giving presents because of a holiday isn't necessary.  It seems so many families are broken, and either expects presents to show caring, or give presents  to show caring.  And you hear of so many family fights during the holidays, for whatever reason, generational differences, politics, expectations not met, lack of respect for individual ideas.  A lot of families aren't as close as they once were, and to come together for the holidays and be one big happy family, when you barely know each other, is a lot of ask.  

We have a tour Christmas morning.  The woman said they were coming to Benson, just to see the donkeys.  It's always nice to have people that appreciate the donkeys and how special they are, come for a visit.  A lot of people come out to visit, that haven't been around donkeys and probably haven't ever thought much about them, it's just something to do.  I hope when they leave they have a better understanding of donkeys and their place in the world.  Many times people have said, they didn't know there are donkey rescues or a need for them.  That's the people we like to see, because they will probably talk to other people if they had a good experience, which helps spread the word.  

Right now everyone seems to be doing really good.  Gus has a vertical split in one of his front feet, so Courtney had to take his foot cast off.  We were afraid his foot might go "wonky" (that's a technical term) without the extra support, but it's been almost a week and he is walking really well.  Also good news,  the split isn't as deep as it looked in the photo.  

As soon as the holidays are over, I'll be getting in touch with Renee at Colorful Equine to order my annual spring fly mask order.  I just sent off my annual order for fly predator wasps from Spalding Labs, so I guess spring must not be too far away.   Right now John is out cutting more firewood, because the next few days are suppose to be really cold, so it's not spring yet.

Would you believe two days ago, Saddik the dog found a long nose snake out and about?  Who would

think a snake would be out when the days are only getting in the 60's, if that, and the nights are really chilly.  He wrapped around a greasewood bush trying to get away from Saddik.  John said he was striking and shaking his tail, of course they aren't poisonous, so that's about all they can do.  I asked John if he picked him up and he said no, he used the snake catcher, because the snake was so mad and striking at everything that moved.  John put him in the hay barn, have no idea where he's been staying.  Couldn't put him in the well house, as far as we know the rattlesnake is still in there, that probably would not end well............LOL 

Merry Christmas to everyone...!!

Friday, December 18, 2015


Really getting tired of cold weather.  Nights in the teens and days in the 50's...........not good...........LOL

So far this week John and I have been gone every single day.  Nothing really exciting, just things that needed to be done in town.  Yesterday we helped Santa by taking the great grand-kids goodies into Tucson for Christmas morning high excitement.  Last year they got Strider bikes, which have no pedals.  They have to balance and steer and use their feet to push off.  This year they are getting "real" bikes with pedals.  They also come with training wheels, which our grandson is going to take off, that's the beauty of the Striders.  The boys should already have that balance thing figured out and not need the training wheels.  

We also went back to where we delivered Ruger and Wister to give them their rabies shots.  The woman was tied up in the house when we got there, so we went out to where the boys were.  There are pole fences around some of the trees and Wister was inside the fence.  When he saw us coming he put his head down, scrunched his body down and out he went.  Unfortunately the poles are set at horse, not donkey height.........LOL  


It looks like they are in a pen, but they really aren't.  They are standing in their turn-out, but the end gate is open, so they can roam all over the where the mesquite trees are suppose to be in protective custody. I should have gotten a picture of the barn, it's really a nice one.  I noticed Ruger had figured out how to go in and out of the barn with no problem.  

The fencing is suppose to be put up in January at their foster home, and they will go back there and be permanently adopted.  There will be a strand of barbed wire 6 inches above the no climb fence, to discourage fence leaning by the boys.  

Julius, the outdoor cat has been coming in more and more.  He likes to come in mornings and clean up the canned cat food, the other 4 have for breakfast and then he lays in the sun, or gets in Snooky's doughnut bed, much to Snooky's disgust.  So far he usually goes back out in a couple of hours, but he has stayed in all night once and all day once.  I don't know if he is getting out of the cold, or if he is trying to figure out if he wants to give up his independence.  He's actually a full brother to Snooky and a half brother to Sunny.  

The donkeys are all doing good, enjoying a little extra hay because of the cold.  I've tried upping the amount of hay pellet and beet pulp mush, and some of them are leaving a little bit of it.  That's good to know, we were wondering if they needed more than we were feeding them.  Obviously not, or at least we're pretty close on what we're feeding.  As long as they don't start gaining weight, we'll probably continue feeding extra.  

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

HUMANS WON THE BATTLE...........SO FAR.......!!

This is Ruthie on the right, Wister and Ruger, working  people for treats
Well, not without a few changes in their routine at least for a few weeks.   Yesterday was cold, windy and rainy here.  We were lucky, some of the area got snow, so I'm not complaining.........but moving donkeys around in that type of weather isn't fun for us or them.  Donkeys really hate to be messed with if they are wet.  We drove in the driveway and they come running across the pasture to greet us.  I think they were actually excited to see if there was anyone in the trailer..........LOL  

Sarah was there and had been to 3 different feed stores to buy rabies vaccine.  The woman where the boys will be staying insisted on them being vaccinated for rabies.  But the feed store didn't sell rabies, although they do sell other types of vaccines.  I thought it might be a county thing, I've always bought my vaccines thru Valley Vet and haven't bought rabies for years, actually since Buddy Brat had a reaction, which scared the devil out of us.  When we came home I went by my feed store and sure enough, I guess feed stores can't sell rabies, even though you can buy it from catalog or on-line stores.  So I went to my vet and got them.  We actually called a vet clinic while in Tucson to see if we could buy the vaccines from them, but they required a $70 exam and they would give the shot.  SIGH...!

I'll be going in again this week sometime to "shoot" the two little trouble causers...... Actually "Santa" has to take a couple of bikes and train set into, Tucson so his "helpers" can make sure Christmas morning is a good one.  Santa was going to bring an outdoor playground, but we decided that would be a good spring project and the boys could help put it up.  Santa couldn't figure out the logistics of installing it in the back yard without getting caught and he certainly wasn't interested in doing it in the dark, after 2 little boys went to sleep..........LOL

Ruger and Wister are staying in 5 star "digs".  They have a real nice stall and turn-out and also a paddock with lots of room to run and play.  They weren't too impressed with the stall, which is inside a barn, which was another negotiating subject.  In fact Ruger was so unimpressed he wouldn't go in at all, and had to be brought in from the gate at the end of the turn-out. He still hadn't gone in when we left, although Wister had went in and out a few times.  The raised door jam was a stumbling block, literally, I'm sure they will figure it all out.  Her mare was acting like an idiot, running and blowing and staring and glaring.  Her gelding just looked at them like no big deal.  

John and Larry got to Belen to pick up the car, drove almost 800 miles and managed to get home before bedtime.  Didn't have any problems as they got farther north in New Mexico, he said there was snow on the ground, but the roads were clear.  

I think this car will be the last thing I buy sight unseen.  I told the guy what I would pay based on the picture, and actually it was quite a bit less than he was asking.  He agreed, and off the guys went to get it.  

It will be just fine as a race car, but he could have never sold it as a street car.  It's covered with frost in the picture, 24 degrees will do that you know.........LOL  But the rear window is not there, the bumper cover is torn and it hasn't even been raced yet.  The transmission won't engage, John thinks it might just be undone.  Not the right word, but it's too early for my brain to come up with anything else.  John said the motor sounds good, so now we have 3 motors and 2 transmissions, if this one does work.  Hopefully that will be enough to get me thru a season........!!!  

John's got a few more little things to do on the asphalt Dodge Neon and it will be completely done, except for the graphics.  Then he will start on this one.  

I'm not sure how running 2 cars at 2 different tracks is going to work out.  I know one thing John will probably be sorry he came up with this idea, before it's over.  All the work will be on him.  I would have been perfectly happy to just go back to the dirt, but we already had the Neon for the asphalt track.  I tried to get him to race it, but he is sticking to his "retired" guns, no more racing for him. 

Saturday, December 12, 2015



I got a call this morning from Sarah, her family has been fostering Ruger and Wister for a few months, to see if they want to adopt them permanently.  Permanence depended on how they got along with the new goats and how they fit into the family.  

The goats came and everyone is getting along fine.  BUT, last week the neighbors harvested their pecans with a shaker.  The shaker shakes the pecans out of the tree, and also shakes the leaves off the trees.  The leaves blew over next to the fence.  I guess the boys started out leaning over the fence to get to the tasty leaves.  Pretty soon the fence started suffering from this abuse.  Next thing the boys are over the fence, not once but on a regular basis.  She said yesterday it was down low enough she could walk over it.  They have plans on having a new fence put in, but not until in January.  She said she had been crying all morning, because they have become so attached to the boys.  She also said the neighborhood loves them, cars stop and one girl that lives in the neighborhood comes twice a week to groom them before school.  A good home like this is worth fighting for, so I offered for us to take the little travelers until they got the new fence in, which she agreed to.  She also had another idea which I like even better.  The woman that takes care of their 2 little girls, lives with her parents about 3 miles away.   They have 2 horses and a nice pasture area and are willing to let the boys stay there until the fence is finished.  

So we will probably be transporting the boys Monday.  I also suggested running either barbed wire or an electric fence along the top of their new fence.  I don't like electric because it can kill birds, and I hate to accidentally get shocked more than anyone else in the world.  But a lot of people don't like barbed wire either. Our perimeter fence is barbed wire and we've only had one scratched nose in all the years we've had donkeys.  And that includes them sticking their heads thru the fence to get to whatever goodies are on the other side.  We actually find quite a few of the fly masks stuck on the wire, fly masks don't seem to make the trip thru the fence as well as their heads do.  

The reason we can't do it this week-end is, today John is going into our son's in Tucson to work on a friend's motor for his race car.  Tomorrow John and Larry, the friend are driving to Belen, New Mexico to pick up a KIA SEPHIA to make into my dirt car for this year.  So as usual our plates, or at least John's plate is over full.  SIGH..........  We didn't want to let this car go, since we've been looking for one for weeks. 

The Dodge Neon to run on the asphalt track is finished.  John and Larry spent 2 days last week, welding on the roll cage.  Road racing roll cages aren't exactly like circle track cages.  If they wreck, they usually wreck differently, so the strength is in different areas.  They got it all ready to go, so all that's left, we hope, is to get the graphics on.  In the old days I made them with patterns cut out of brown paper bags.  But that's not good enough anymore I guess..........LOL  

I had to take a picture when John pulled in

Tuesday, December 08, 2015



I know I'm sitting in Arizona being whiny, but why do the nights have to be so COLD?  It doesn't build incentive to get out of bed in the morning, that's for sure.  I even catch John turning the mattress heater on his side on, in the early morning hours.  He turns it down on low, but he gets too comfy and oversleeps.  I'll wake up and there are cats sitting and staring at him, like that will wake him up.  LOL So I wake him up, much to their delight.  

Julius the outdoor cat is becoming very "I really like being inside and eating canned food".  He comes in every morning, plays with the others, cleans up their canned food, plops himself down in Snooky's round high sided warm bed in the sun for awhile and then wants out again.  So he hasn't given up his freedom, but he is enjoying the indoor comforts.  Snooky gets the funniest look on his face, as he sits by his "personal" bed watching Julius sleep.  Julius has one of the Burger Cat Beds on the back porch and he stays in it quite a bit too.

We took Jake back to his home a few days ago.  He had been here because we weren't sure how he would act towards the 3 new little babies Jim and Bobbie had, since he had been a herd jack until last spring.  Jim said he moved right back like he had never left and seems to be very mellow with the 3 little monsters.  I guess they are very busy running and jumping around.  They've got plenty of room to run and get plenty of exercise and all seem to be very healthy.  I ran my hands all over them, picked up feet and they didn't mind at all.  I guess Jake always turned the wheelbarrows over.  We don't have any wheelbarrows, but Jim said he started turning them over right on schedule the next morning.

 Here is eight of the herd of eleven, look at all that room to run.....!!

 Here is John with Shadow and Rowdy, two of the little "darlings".

Over in the NEW STUFF links on the right is a video on teeth and dental that is really interested.  If you get a chance check it out.  

Wednesday, December 02, 2015


I don't think it's a permanent fix, but one of the Blogspot guys, figured out a go around.

This is what my kitchen looks like this morning.  If we had been smart when we built the house, we would have not went for beauty and went for permanency.  We had lovely wooden windows with aluminum clad on the outside.  Over the years what little rain we got, started getting between the clad and the wood.  We now have window frames than have either rotted or dry rotted.  Not sure what the difference is, but do know you end up with gaping holes where wood should be.  

So there is a crew here today, replacing the worst ones on the south side of the kitchen and great room.  I'm sure they will be lovely when they are done, and it's suppose to be done by tonight, but in the meantime, the disruption drives me crazy.  I know, short drive.............LOL  I have a friend that is having major remodeling done to her house and she has my admiration.  There is no way I would survive that..............LOL  

This is the longest we've ever lived anywhere.  Being in the Air Force for over 20 years, we moved every 2-4 years, so remodeling and replacing wasn't much of a problem.  But if you live in the same house for years, I guess normal wear and tear catches up with you.

My new cook stove is also causing consternation.  Got it a few months ago and have noticed the oven would make booming noises like it was getting too much gas.  I kept complaining and John seemed to think I was being whiny.  Until he was watching TV and I was baking a pie.  It had blown the oven door open before, but he didn't take my word for it.  This time he did..........LOL  Just got a call from the stove guy and the factory says this has been a problem and the igniter needs to be replaced.  I'm surprised they haven't done a recall, because believe me you need nerves of steel to stay in the kitchen area, when that thing blew..........LOL

The donkeys of course aren't happy today, they are staying in the pens.  They are entirely too nosy, and helpful when workers are here.  We would let them out if they went on about their business, but that isn't their M.O.

Here is a cute picture Doug took of Boaz.  Boaz has learned how to beg effectively and this look is what gets the goodies flowing in his direction.


Tuesday, December 01, 2015


I went to my blog server and voiced my disapproval of not being able to download my pictures, without Google's nose in my business.  Seems like I'm not the only one, quite a few people jumped onto my message, and now the Forum moderator has asked us all for some information to try to figure out what is going on.  So we'll see, seems like it would be easier to go to Google and ask them what they are doing, but maybe I don't see the "big" picture.

It was 17 degrees here this morning, Doug's water is frozen until later in the day.  Of course all the water buckets have to have ice broken and netted out.  At least the heater is still floating in the Rubbermaid tank.  Although everyone has small bucket in their pens, we also have 2 other areas for water and they are both heated, so they have access to open water all the time when they are out of their pens.  

The reason I mentioned the heater floating in the Rubbermaid is a couple of days ago it wasn't.  It was sitting on top of the insulated box around all the faucets that go to the feed room, pens, etc.  None of us know how it got there, someone had to grab hold of it floating in the water, and hang onto it long enough to drag it out, when the electrical wire probably stopped it from going any further.  Over the years it's never been a problem before with the donkeys.  But, Saddik the new dog was not here he's getting the blame, unless we catch one of the donkeys dragging it out.  

Although they don't enjoy the cold weather, I'm pretty sure they are all enjoying, no fly masks, no polo wraps or socks on their legs and no doctoring.  I'm going out this morning and gathering up all the fly masks to decide which ones are salvageable which ones to throw away.  I think quite a few of them are still good, but I'll still have to get in touch with Colorful Equine to order a supply to start out next spring. 

We'll be taking Jake home to his herd Friday.  The little ones are big enough to take care of themselves and the other jenny hasn't had a baby, so we'll give it a try.  If she does have a baby, we could always go back and bring Jake back here, if we thought it was necessary.  He's really a nice donkey, gorgeous and very sweet and mellow.  I'm sure he will be glad to get home to his family.  The 8 donkeys adopted together by one couple, were a active herd, Jake was the herd jack, 5 jennies and 2 weanling jacks.  It's not often a little herd like that would get to stay together, so this is a special situation.  They now have 3 more little jacks to have gelded in the spring.  It would have been cheaper if Jake had thrown jennies instead of jacks........LOL  One of the jennies got her neck trapped in the fork of a tree this summer, probably broke it and couldn't walk, so had to be euthanized, unfortunately. 

Since we are in a cold snap, John has upped everyone's hay, which they seem to appreciate.  At least they aren't leaving any, like they were during mesquite bean season.  Except for the 3 fatties, Coquette, Rosie and Buddy Brat, the others all look pretty good, so I don't think a little bit of extra hay to help keep them warm, will be a problem.