Saturday, December 4, 2010

Morning Chores

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Morning chores would probably be my favorite time of the day if it weren't for the fact that they happen in the morning. When it's cold. And dark. And my bed is warm. And soft. Getting out of bed is the hardest thing I do every day. No kidding. But once I'm up and getting dressed (preferably in front of the electric heater in the bathroom) it's pretty easy after that. Morning chores, that is. Much like evening chores, after donning all of my "smart clothes," a term I heard once from a gal in the UMD Outdoor Program, and checking the temperature via the Weather Channel ap on my iPhone, I brace myself for the cold and step outside. I soon forget about the chilly air as I anticipate seeing the boys come out of the barn in eager anticipation of their morning rations. As I slide the catch pen panel closed behind me and start filling a bucket of water from the hydrant, they usually pop right out of the barn and watch, waiting for that magical time after I disappear into the tack room and reappear with their pellets & chow. Here Boo checks on me in the tack room. hello? Just as with evening chores (and because I have so few animals), each boy gets his own bowl, which allows me to measure and monitor how much each one consumes. For some reason Monet seems to give up eating before he is done with his ration. But he seems to relish finishing if I hold up his bowl. Perhaps he is training me? As they eat, I check the barn, add water to their heated bucket, replenish the hay in the troughs, and scoop beans (the sub-zero temps have driven them to pooping in the barn, whereas they were not doing that before). They are usually done with their chow by the time I'm finished with chores. If it's not precipitating (and by that I mean snowing like a banshee), I take a flake of hay and spread it out along the fence line, allowing them to munch in the sunshine, away from the barn. I figure it's good for them to be outside whenever they can. Which hasn't been much lately, due to the recent 3' of snow in their pastures. the boys Truth be told, it's good for me to be outside, too, when the sun shines. Even when it's cold outside. Cheers -

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