Sunday, October 24, 2010

In Memoriam - Edna Stewart Mitchell

It was one year ago today—one year since I lost my support, advisor, comrade in trouble, sounding board, confidence builder, luck, best friend and confidante—my mom, Edna Stewart Mitchell.

Loved with a love beyond all telling.
Missed with a grief beyond all tears.

Her favorite poem:


I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;

A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;

A tree that may in summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;

Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.

Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

—Alfred Joyce Kilmer

To Hell With Your "Winter Wonderland." It's Gonna Be Fricken Cold Outside!

Tis the season to talk... horse blankets!

Everyone has an opinion—don't they? Even about horse blankets. There's the price, of course. And don’t forget durability, looks, layers, comfort, waterproof, if the damn thing will stay on...

I live in central Alberta, baby, and it can get mighty cold here—cold enough to feel guilty over even the thought of one of our many silent minus forty degree nights, me having the audacity to roast chestnuts on an open fire while my horse has Jack Frost nipping at his nose (and neck and chest and back and sides and butt...). Since moving to Florida was out of the question, I got online and researched blankets to death until I found one I felt would keep my horse relatively happy and me relatively guilt free.

Enter the "Weatherbeeta Orican Freestyle Detach-a-Neck Heavy Turnout"
(This is not an advertisement. This is just me saying what I've found.) It might be a bit pricey, but so are vet calls and antibiotics when your horse comes down with pneumonia.

Super strong 1200 denier triple weave, waterproof and breathable outer layer. Features the Freestyle gusset, shoulder dart and full wrap tail flap, Freestyle detach-a-neck, quick clip front closure, and wither relief pad. Warm 360g of polyfill with a hygienic and strong 210D Oxford lining and stainless steel surcingle fittings.

Sure. Whatever. Sounded good enough to try it out last year (sans the neck attachment though; I mean, it's great to have it in case it's needed, but it's just one more thing my boy can get himself hung up with) on my then twenty-seven-year-old gelding who's housed outside 24/7 in a huge wooden-fenced paddock with a large shelter, lots of quality food and plenty of non-frozen water. And I gotta tell you, I'm glad I did. The blanket honestly worked better than I'd hoped. My gelding was warm and dry all winter with no rub marks or tender spots of any kind, anywhere, and the blanket came through without a mark on it.

Would I buy it again? You bet. In a heartbeat. In fact, I am gonna buy it again because I'm in the process of purchasing a second gelding who’ll need one as well. You know. So I can roast chestnuts over an open fire. Guilt free.
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