Wednesday, February 4, 2015

2014: It was the Best of Times...

There is so much that I could write about that occurred in 2014, but the year is remarkable for me because I experienced the incredible joy in September of realizing a life-long dream to own a farm and the complete despair of losing my mother in November.  Both events explain my prolonged absence from blogging.

For my first blog post of 2015, it is my pleasure to take you on a tour of Copper Penny Farm.  

You will notice that the photos were taken at different times of the year.  I prefer the photos of the expansive green fields, not the ones showing the mud that is the result of an incredibly wet winter. 

The front field is the largest of the five pastures, about 3 acres.  
I love the long approach to the house.  Well, let's say I did love 
it when it looked like this.  Having had to clear all that
 asphalt following two snowstorms, I am a little less enamored
with the house being set back nearly a quarter of a mile from the road.

I've lived in colonial-style homes my whole life but I find I like one-floor living.

The front yard. 

It's wonderful to sit on the porch and watch the horses in the front field....

…And in the autumn, enjoy the brilliant oranges and reds of the maple tree.

In the fall, we kept the horses in the back pastures because this
field is planted in orchard grass and clover.  With three easy 
keepers, we couldn't risk putting them on such lush grass.  

   After three heavy frosts, the horses could graze in the 
field and they loved to race to the field each morning.

So you've seen the front of the property, now let's go around to the back.

The backyard has a play set for my future (I hope) grandchildren!

We have to walk through the backyard to
get to the barn and the run-in area.

The gate from the back yard leads to a fenced yard outside the barn.

The barn is small but meets our needs. 

The barn has two stalls for Queenie and Deja.
Saiph's horses, Gracie and Lily, are on field board. 

 There is not a lot of room for storage, although  we have
managed to squeeze in all of our tack, feed and supplies.

and even a horse occasionally, though we
usually tack up in the stalls or outside.

The hay loft holds about 250 bales.  

The run-in and dry lot area are on the side of the barn.
It's a good size and it's where I feed Gracie and Lily.
Queenie and Deja are fed in their stalls.
The run-in area seems sufficiently large until all four horses gather
there waiting to be fed. Anticipation and excitement
 can lead to biting, kicking and other "you can't have any of mine" behavior.

From their stalls, Queenie and Deja can keep an eye on the back
pasture, the run-in area, and usually Gracie and Lily. 

And Queenie can survey her realm.

Gracie will often stick her head in the stalls looking
for more food.  It ticks Queenie off to no end since she is
VERY protective of her stall.  I guess she had to go
through a lot in life before she got her own space
 so she's definitely not sharing it or her food.

The farm has five pastures.
The first is in front of the barn.
Since I don't have an arena, we use
this pasture for lessons, training and
exercising the horses. 


The back pasture is behind this field.
The back pasture is the width of the farm
and abuts Rachel Carson Park.   There is a 
gate in the lower portion of the
pasture that goes out to the park trails. 

Standing at the back of the pasture looking left.

Middle of the back pasture

Looking to the right

Park trail outside pasture gate

The third pasture is behind the barn.  
At this time of year, the horses use it only to
get to the front field.  When it was warmer, the horses
enjoyed hanging out under the shade tree.

The pasture also has a run-in that we initially
referred to as the "shitty shed" since it needed some repair.
It now has gates so I can convert it to a stall
if a field board horse needs to recover from injury or illness.

There is nothing particularly remarkable about the
 fourth pasture which, in the winter is also largely a cut
through for the horses to the front pasture.  

The front field is the fifth pasture and as I noted earlier, the largest.  

And finally, I would like to share a few of my favorite photos of the farm.

The view from my bedroom.

The view from the living room.