Saturday, September 21, 2013


Are we never too old to start over?  I have been riding over 40 years, both English and Western. Heck I was even doing some jumping. I had a really good mare whom I trusted and she trusted me. We were a great team. She gave me my little prince, Blue who again was a great horse, that anyone could ride. We could of had such great rides if he hadn't developed navicular. So with the old girl Schiroc getting old and the young prince not quite sound I looked for a new horse to take me places and found Peps. Came to me as pretty green. She'd had some training so thought I could get her the rest of the way. Well 5 yrs ago we had a wreck and I came out of it unable to ride for a year, with a fractured spine in 5 places, 4 broken ribs, and multiple bruises and a very bruised confidence. Sent Peps away for some professional training and when she came back I realized that maybe I should have gone for some professional help as well. I have not been able to ride confidently since my wreck and I really miss it.
My family bought me for my birthday, a new pair of English riding pants and 4 professional riding lessons after which I can continue on my own. My family felt that I should start English again to get my balance, coordination and confidence back. I can ride, I know I can, I just need a safe, secure place to ride and someone helping me what I seem to have lost. I hope to continue throughout the winter and hopefully next spring Peps and I can start on the road to some very happy trails.
Peps gave me a beautiful little filly named Sprite, whom I think looks a lot like the little prince so maybe I am starting over with her too. These two foals, the little prince and sprite are related in the fact that Blue's Grandsire and Peps great Grand Sire are one and the same. Chief Little Hawk, so maybe that is where the resemblance comes from

Sunday, July 21, 2013


Well little miss Oakley's Arctic Heather finally has a barn name. Tossed about a number of choices. She is so tiny and petite looking and had an Angel looking over her when she was born, that the name SPRITE was chosen for her. Sherry brought it up to me and the more I thought about it, the more I liked it. You could also relate it to the drink theme. Her moms name is Pepsi, and she being so white could be Sprite. Play on words there. Anyhow, the little miss has a name and an attitude apparently. I guess she felt it necessary to tell her big brother what the boundaries were. I guess she is starting to explore abit on her own and follow her siblings around.. Mom is somewhat very protective so to get a picture of her by herself has been somewhat of a chore. Thanks to Sherry for taking the pictures and getting me my baby fix for the day. I couldn't see her this weekend as Friday, went with Sherry to see REBA and then Saturday we had our annual community garage sale and then Sunday went back into the city to watch Angela (DVM2012) at the River Valley Horse Show at Whitemud Equine Centre. I love watching her as she is living my dream. She and Eurus were amazing this week. Their first official show. I told Eurus today as I was tacking him up for her that he needed to jump like he had wings and I think he almost was. I did three classes in a horse show once and got two seconds and a sixth with my old mare Schiroc, whom Angela started her riding career with. She was no Eurus but boy she had try and that funny looking Appy put many big warmbloods in their place. It is so much fun and excitement to watch your children excel in what they love.


Monday, July 15, 2013


Well little Miss Oakley (Peanut) is sure growing fast. I get out to see her at least 3 times a week and every time I see her she seems to have grown more. Peps is showing to be a real good Mom although she does like to have some "Me" time as well. I make sure that I rub her ears, brush her down and feed her tons of cookies. As I'm doing this, I'm able to sneak in a few butt scratches and pats with baby. She loves it when I get down to her level. She will put her nose right up to my face. Trying to get a picture some times is proving to be difficult. She comes right up the camera and all I get are her nostrils. Did rub her face yesterday and scratch between her ears. I could spend hours just hanging out with the mommas and babies. Even Jazzy (who normally is very standoffish) hung around for some "Me" time yesterday as well. In all these years, I have never been able to get this close to her. She can be a very sweet mare if she wants too. I'm hoping by seeing Peps and baby (still haven't decided on what her barn name will be) and spending time in with them at least twice a week, that I will be able to keep playing with her and that she will allow me to touch and play with her. If any of you have any suggestions as to her barn name, please leave them in the comments. Sherry started calling her Peanut, I have been calling her little miss, so I'm still not sure what to call her.

Friday, July 5, 2013


Well the wait is over. She is here. A beautiful chestnut with a blanket. Peps waited till I was home from my week's vacation at least. Every morning I have been waiting for a phone call. Every time Sherry would call I was hoping for some news.  I have had three children of my own, I've had foals from other mares but this one the anticipation was killing me.

Poor little thing had a rather startling entry into this world. Not sure when she was born but thank goodness for Sherry and her sister, Heather. Heather was on her step enjoying the morning air when she heard Peps hollering and running back and forth along the dug out. She called Sherry who rushed down to the pen and found poor baby had fallen into the dug out. Now the mares have been having their foals in this pen for years and not once had one of the babies fallen in the water. This is so ironic as I had mentioned earlier to Sherry about the dugout and foals and sure enough mine is the one to be the first. Anyway, Sherry jumps into the water and goes up to her knees in mud. Scoops up baby  and then says now what, I am stuck. Tosses baby onto the shore and is still stuck. I guess Peps was thankful to her for rescuing baby as she stood and let Sherry grab her front legs and pull herself out of the mud. With some coaxing from Sherry and nuzzling from Mom, baby found breakfast and is now doing just fine.
So welcome to the world little miss, OAKLEY'S ARCTIC HEATHER, out of Arctic Frosted Pepsi by Windwalker Cactus. Arctic heather is actually a beautiful white flower that grows ironically in the Arctic,

but also she is named for Heather, who helped save her by calling Sherry. Thank you both for saving my little filly.

Sunday, June 16, 2013


Well we had a fabulous week on the East Coast. Whirlwind tour of PEI, Cape Breton, Halifax and Area. Man it is such beautiful country. Visited all the historic sites, Louisberg, Fort Anne, Port Royal, Lunenberg, Halifax Citadel as well as Anne of Green Gables, Peggy's Cove, etc. Cape Breton was so picturesque as was all of it. Went sailing on an old wooden sailboat out of Lunenberg. Had Tead and seafood chowder at Rita McNeil's in Big Pond, Cape Breton. What a fascinating woman she was. So talented. Alexander Kieth's brewery tour was definitely a highlight. I have now put my toes in both the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. I guess now I will have to plan a trip to the Arctic and put my toes or fingers in the Arctic Ocean. Now to the meaning of the title. My mare is #4 in the foaling contest on Sherry's blog (Fern Valley Appaloosas). She is less than a month away with her first foal. So I promised I would enter the contest. So here we go> Mare #4 Arctic Frosted Pepsi/ OK Frosty Bear X Arctic Hi Flame
Peps was bred on August 1st to Windwalker Cactus/ Middys Top Dandy X RS Magic Bar
This is Peps' first foal. We tried last year but think she lost it. She is a half sister to Spots In XS
Her sire OK Frosty Bear is pictured below, the white few spot. I sure hope to get lots of spots. She herself was born a black with a blanket. But we all know that with appys it is a crap shoot. So pick the day, time, sex and colour and stay tuned for the results.
Cactus's sire Middy's Top Dandy

Monday, May 27, 2013


Well we asked for rain and boy did we ever get it. But before the rain, we had wind. So much so , that our dock system at the lake was pretty much dismantled by mother nature. Not only were dock pieces stuck in the mud and bull rushes (what was left of them) but we had debris from all around the lake. Thanks to Sherry for taking pictures. We had hoped to put it all back together this weekend, but the rains came.It's amazing how instantly with just a bit or rain, how everything greens up. So instead of working on the dock, I decided to help Sherry move the horses around for better grass. We moved the pregnant ladies no problem, other than the gate being snugged so tight we had to use a lead rope and pull with all of our might to get it open. The girls were such ladies, went in to their new pasture without any problems. So then went to Sherry's sisters for coffee before we moved the geldings. Good thing we did, as the heavens opended up agian with a down pour and hail, thunder, the whole gammit of weather. The rain stopped so we headed out to move the geldings.Now this is where my title, SOME THINGS NEVER CHANGE comes in. Over the past 30 yrs that Sherry and I have known each other, we have run into situations that could be portrayed in a CM Russell painting. We have been in mud up to our butts, wrestled calves, built bridges, fixed fences in what some would call challenging situations. So any way we head to the bottom of the pastures to move the boys and wouldn't you know it, the heavens open up again with a down pour. We are soaked through and then begin laughing and thinking of all the times we have been in this situation. At least I didn't walk out of my boots in the mud. Years ago, the mud was so deep and we we're moving cows and I had to keep baby from charging past me so I ran to stop him and my boots stayed in the mud but I kept running. Just one of many situations that Sherry and I share between us. We both may be getting older and our bodies don't react like we wish they would, but I wouldn't change a thing and whenever the situation arises and she needs me to help, I'll be there trudging through the mud, crossing a creek on a log, fixing fences with whatever bit of baling twine we can find,getting soaked in the rain, it won't matter as we have such memories and a real special friendship and I hope that "SOME THINGS NEVER CHANGE" . Maybe someday there might be a book produced chronicalling all of our exploits at Fern Valley Farms. No pictures as they are all in my head and will be there forever. Oh Sunday, we did manage to fix the dock and start cleaning up the lake front. Again I was in rubber boots with a pitch fork in hand, standing in mud, getting stuck and thinking back to all the great times on the farm. Till next time.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013


We had a wonderful long weekend. Moved Angela to Sylvan Lake on Saturday. What a beautiful little resort town. She is never going to be short of something to do. She and her sister spent the resst of the long weekend decorating and unpacking. This is the first time in her life that Angela will have a place all to her self. Now Mayerthorpe is 1 and 1/2 hrs nw of Edmonton and Red Deer/Sylvan Lake is only one and 1/2 hrs. south of Edmonton; so why does it seem that now she has moved to Red Deer we won't see her as much. She used to use the shopping and the activities as her reason for coming home to Edmonton. Now that she has all of that in Sylvan Lake/REd Deer will she find the time to come home to visit. We have always looked after her two boys (cats) Elliott and Stitchy. Now if any of you are familiar with the movie Lilo and Stitch. Well this kitten epitomizes "Stitch" from that movie. He isn't all bad. My husband just calls him the farm kitten living in the big city. We have them for another couple of days until Angela moves her big horse and all her horse stuff down to Red Deer and then she will take the boys home. I always feel so empty when they leave. The little terds sure have away of getting to you. Autumn loves her kittens too. I really think she is kind of sad too when they leave. I won't put any names to the pictures. I'm sure you'll be able to tell which one is Elliott and which one is Stitcy. This month has just flown by. Time just moves so much faster the older you get. Hope everyone is safe and sound and be thankful for each and every day.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013


Autumn at 20 mths old. Staying with her Vet Dr. Oakley. Well it certainly has been a long time since I've posted. Kinda got out of it for some reason. don't know why. Since the last post, my daughter Angela, DVM2012 has graduated from WCVM and has worked in Mayerthorpe/Whitecourt for the last year and is moving to Red Deer June 1st. Hubby and I bought a new Campion boat and have taken her to many of the great prairie lakes and have parked her in Manitoba to be used there and on Lake of the Woods. New puppy autumn has grown into a beautiful very spoiled but much loved Golden Girl. Youngest daughter Cara had moved to Victoria to go to school and moved home at christmas and is hoping to get accepted to Interior Design at Mount Royal University in Calgary. Son Robert is still living and working in Medicine Hat. We have been doing alot of travelling this past year. Been to Arizona twice, Victoria, Winnipeg, Lake of the Woods and many stops in between. Now to the other point of this blog post. Now that I have been encouraged to become active with my blog again, which I promise to keep up with. My mare Arctic Frosted Pepsi is expecting her first foal. She is bred to Windwalker Cactus. She was bred on August 1st. She is a half sister to OK SpotsinXs. She is also related to Sherry's old stud Chile Poivre whose sons and grand son still reside on the farm. It is good to be back blogging. Hopefully I will stay on line.