Well, here it is Monday and my wonderful week off with Wally is over.  I felt guilty that he went off for work and I stayed home.  I feel sure that he believes that I didn’t have anything to do with getting fired from MM, but I feel guilty about that.  I guess all I can do now is to put my head down and find something else as quickly as I can.  I’ll wait until Tuesday before contacting the unemployment office to see if there’s any information to be had on my claim.  If that would go through and I had at least that little bit of cushion, I’d feel better.

As I write this, it’s raining outside and both dogs are lying at my feet.  I can’t believe how well the new dog, Narley (an Australian Cattle Dog) has settled in.  It’s as if she has lived here here whole life.  She gets better every day.

The day after Thanksgiving Wally and I went to a horse/tack auction in Troutman.  We’ve wanted to go to this auction for quite a while now, they have it in March and November every year.  The Amish bring horses and buggies to sell; it wasn’t like the other horse auction that we sometimes go to.  We didn’t see a horse in bad condition.  We saw a lot of horses and mules harnessed and pulling wagons and buggies in the crowds and the calmness of these animals was amazing.  We decided to bring Narley with us and left Gel home, something I’m sure he wasn’t too happy about, but I planned to go riding at South Mountain on Saturday and was going to bring him for that.  Narley did great; for a dog that hasn’t been too well socialized, she’s amazing.

I wish we had planned accordingly and got to this sale when it opened at 8:00 AM as I expect I could have found a good Western saddle for not much money.  I need a good, secure Western saddle to slap on that Arabian plow horse and ride the hair off him.  But, by the time we got there, there were not a lot of Western saddles left and I couldn’t get a good enough look at them to risk bidding on one.  Oh well.  It was a good time though and we’ll go to the next one in March.

I did ride at South Mountain on Saturday and brought Ace.  It was a short ride, only eight miles, but it was a good one.  Both of us (Ace and me) have lost our previous fitness levels.  My friend was riding a young mare that she recently repossessed in poor condition, so we got off the horses and walked down the steepest hills and my thighs are still sore from that.  Ace rides like a dream, he’s really a good horse.  I need to spend more time with him.  Because of the rain, I can’t ride today and probably not tomorrow, but I’d really like to make it a point to ride him the rest of the week.  I wish I could afford to go to South Mountain more than one day a week, but that’s not in the cards.

While we were riding, we ran into a man riding in what would have been the perfect saddle for me, well, almost perfect, it was a size 16 and I really need a 15, but other than that, it was perfect.  He said he comes across this type of saddle quite frequently and on Sunday, with Wally’s help, we tracked him down and hopefully he’ll have or find me something in my price range.  It would be nice to turn Sudi into one broke pony.

Some people have money though, don’t they?  According to the Today Show this morning, the weekend offered epic sales and epic stupidity.  Epic stupidity, that’s nothing new for Black Friday.  Except for going to a grain mill, Wally and I didn’t go anywhere near a store on Friday.

When I got back from South Mountain on Saturday, Gel and I brought the goats up to the Christmas Tree Farm and did a quick herding demo.  My landlords run this Farm and every year now we’ve been a part of it, but this year, they didn’t call us to ask about the goats and herding demos so I thought we had been left out.  My landlady called me while I was on my way to South Mountain asking if I’d bring the goats up.  I told her I was going riding and would do it when I got back.  She called me again when I was on my way back asking if I was still coming so I rushed home, got Gel and the goats and brought them up.  The people eat that up.  To see a dog as well trained as Gel is just amazes them.  One day, I hope we’ll be able to get a small group of sheep so I can do real demos.  The goats work okay, but they don’t work like sheep.

I brought Narley with me when we went back up to get the goats and I was a bit worried about that, but she listened and behaved herself very well.  One of the dogs that lives up there is a very dominant bitch and I was worried about how Narley was going to be around her.  The dog approached Narley in an aggressive manner, but when she got close to Narley, she turned around and went the other way.  Guess she figured out early on that she wasn’t going to be able to dominate Narley.

I had a litter of seven American Chinchilla rabbits born Sunday morning.  Whoo Hooo!!!!  The more rabbits we can grow out, the better.  Yesterday afternoon, I cooked rabbit etouffee with baked cheese grits and it was wonderful!!!!  I didn’t like it as much as I did the rabbit with Sicilian flavors, but it was still really good.  Today I’m cooking stuffed turkey with all the trimmings.  On Saturday, we picked up two large turkeys for less than $10 each and they are in the freezer for future meals.  I love this time of year for all the turkey sales.  There’s so much you can do with leftover turkey.  I have two gallons of turkey soup in the freezer so I won’t make soup from this turkey, instead I plan on making turkey and sweet potato hash.  Need to get the freezers organized and ready for all of the beef we’ll be getting soon.  Spot dressed out at 423 pounds which means we’ll get almost 300 pounds of meat.  Yes!

The rain has stopped so I need to go out and get the chores done.  This is the last warm morning we’ll have for a while so I better enjoy it.  They are forecasting as much as two inches of rain this afternoon into tomorrow so I need to get the animals all set in preparation for the rain and upcoming cold.

Until later …

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