Saturday, January 30, 2016

Shoveling Horse Manure and Decorating the House--All in a Day's Work

While I've been working hard figuring out this horse farm thing, I've also tackled redecorating several rooms in the house.  The previous owners were fond of wallpaper which made a statement.  I prefer a more subtle approach.  The abundance of wallpaper meant that I spent weeks removing it in the dining room and foyer.

So now I'm going to show you the before and after photos.  I feel a bit like I'm on an HGTV show--minus the talent and big budget, of course.


Before.  It took me a LONG time to remove that wallpaper.  

After.  The new color made the room seem so much larger and brighter.  I bought the horse prints at a used theater prop store in New York for $35. Framing them was more than ten times that but it was worth every penny.  


Before:  Thankfully the previous owners opted not to wallpaper this room but covering the dark paint did require three coats of the new lighter color. 
After:  I have several of my mother's antiques in this room.

Before:  I cursed every hour I spent stripping this wallpaper.  They must  have used epoxy to hang it.  It was incredibly difficult to remove.

After:  Less is definitely more.
My next project:  You guessed it--I'm stripping wallpaper in the family room.  I'm planning to dust off my limited carpentry skills and put up wainscoting.  I can't believe I'm saying this, but if the job is beyond my capabilities, I may opt for the easier option of hanging wallpaper that looks like wainscoting.

So stay tuned for the next episode of FGTV--the Farm and Garden channel--when I show you the finished half bath that had "WOOF WOOF" wallpaper and dog head knobs on the vanity!

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Keeping Me Smiling: The Antics of Adso

In September, I decided to adopt two barn cats for four-legged mouse control.  I contacted a local adoption group and they brought Adso and Annie.  Unfortunately and sadly, Annie was ill and passed away a few weeks after she came to the farm.  

So Adso quickly stole our hearts.   He makes me laugh at least once a day with his antics.

Adso was only 3 months old when he arrived.  Such a baby!

All seven pounds of Adso has to co-exist with four 700- to 1,000-pound horses.  It was pretty clear from the start that Adso is fearless.  He loves the morning sun in Deja's stall so will lie a foot from where Deja is eating her hay.  The horses quickly adapted to Adso wandering in and out of their stalls and the run-in.  

Newton, a large 30-year old Quarter horse LOVES Adso and demonstrates his affection by licking him.  


Adso does seem to be perceptive enough to realize which horses will tolerate him.  He likes to get on the stall door and rub up against Deja.  And then he jumps on her back!  Luckily, she doesn't seem to mind him sitting there.  


Queenie, on the other hand, is not thrilled when Adso visits her stall.

I always have a buddy when I'm doing farm chores because Adso likes to hang out where I'm working.  

 Sitting on the stall door provides an excellent view. 

I was adding sawdust to Queenie's stall so guess who had to sit on the bag.  
When Adso "helps," filling hay nets is always a bit more difficult.  

You guessed it--I had the tractor out to clean stalls and Adso had to check it out.

Keeping track of all the comings and goings on the farm can be tiring so a nap on a comfy saddle pad is in order from time to time.  

On sunny days, Adso's favorite spot is a chair outside the barn.  
Several friends came by to visit on an unusually warm December day and Adso made sure he was part of the party.

I think "mischievous" is Adso's middle name.

For thrills, Adso does a balancing act on the water trough.  I admit it makes me nervous that he'll fall in! 

An empty container was just too intriguing to ignore.  

A pile of hay can be great fun!!

I warm up the canned food in the microwave.  Adso can't wait for me to get the bowl out.  

Once we added suet to the bird feeder, Adso decided that the tree is an excellent place for bird (snack?) watching.

In December, I adopted another cat that I named MacDugh, after a character in the Outlander novels.  Stay tuned for the next blog post, "The Misadventures of MacDugh."