My Weekly Smile; Jan. 16, 2022

Welcome to my weekly smile. I can’t believe it’s been two months since I wrote my last smile post and that surprised me as I didn’t think it had been that long when I checked. I will blame my work schedule as I try to balance work, my horsey time, my blogging time and I like to spend some free time with my crafts. I haven’t been able to fit in reading as I’ve been wanting to get back into novels I have sitting here just waiting for me! I have to set aside some time to read. I would read before I go to bed, but my hubby is in bed before me and I can’t have a light on and I don’t want to wake him. Hmm… I suppose I could read in the family room before I head to bed. I’ll figure it out! This sleeping at night thing takes awhile to figure out scheduling things. (For anyone new, I use to work grave yard shift for over 30 years!) Now I work swing shift.

I am smiling as I devour my giant ginger cookies. They are delicious and I will share! 😀 My son has been asking me to make them since Christmas and I ran out of time to bake my cookies this year so I finally made them this last weekend. The house smelled wonderful while they baked and I am very happy to bake for the family. I have a few other things that bring me smiles and I hope they may bring a smile to you!

I thought I would share a couple of photos which the galloping one was an accident. It may not be the best photo but I liked how I caught him with almost all 4 feet off the ground! 😀 I thought I was taking a video when I snapped a photo. I like accidental photos, they are fun!! And at the back of his stall on the neighbors property they have cows and steers. You can see the steer with its horns in the next photo, Murphy is very curious. We have had horses boarded here that have been very scared of the cows that get close to the fence. I am proud of Murphy as he checks things out! Not much phases this big guy!

He is such a fun horse checking out the bags of bedding for his stall! Silly guy!

I thought this a funny video as Murphy is a curious 3 year old! He is so darn cute, and I usually take him out to add shavings to his stall. It was fun interacting with him. He has such a personality, they all do and I mean all animals do right? I have so much fun and I knew as the months go by, I can say that we are really bonding. It’s so wonderful and that truly makes me smile!

I have to tell you of one last smile. After Murphy and I had a fun ride together I rode to the gate of the arena and pushed it opened and we walked down the aisle and I decided to ride out the front gate all by ourselves to the trails out front. He has gone out through the gate before but with other horses. When we walk off the property we have to walk between the house and the garage of the owners place and since there are trees and bushes around too, it can be a bit scary for the horses. Also, horses don’t really want to leave the herd (or all the other horses that board there which they would consider “their herd”) so it can be challenging to get them to be brave enough while riding them out the front gate!

I am smiling from ear to ear as he just walked right on down and through the gate and out to the trail! YAY! 😀 Once we got onto the trail out front we turned right and took a few steps and then he stopped. He just looked around and did what I had asked him and I didn’t really have a plan once I was at the trail. This was all fine because I am not ready to go down the trail by ourselves yet at his age. We will take our time, and so I let him turn and head back into the stables and back to the hitching post or cross-ties where I dismounted and tied him so I could untack him and get him ready for his stall. He is so much FUN!! ❤ ❤ ❤

One more photo of my ride with a great shadow! His mane is so thick it falls on both sides of his neck!

I hope you all have a wonderful week, what makes you smile? And I have to thank Trent who hosts the weekly smile post each week. It is so much fun to join in and linkup with his blog which is here.

Smiling, Baking, Horse Crazy Gal!

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; Winter in California And Horsey Fun!

Welcome to my weekend coffee share. We have had lots of weather this winter. Last winter was very dry and we had hardly any rain. We made up for it this winter and this photo is of our local mountains after days of rain and snow. I love the lingering clouds in this photo and thought I’d share. Nature provides us with such beauty, I can’t get enough of the snow capped mountains! ❤

I am okay not living in the snow. I lived in the local mountains 20 years ago and the snow and icy roads were enough to drive us off the mountain back to moderate weather. My heart goes out to all that live in cold and frigid weather, battling the elements snow, ice and wind. Here, where we live it is so mild that the lows do not quite hit freezing. We had low’s in the high 30’sF (2-3C) at night and it rarely dips lower and even if it gets to freezing in the night it will only be for a few hours and it warms right back up again. During the coldest days its in the high 50’sF and for us Cali’s we think its soooo cold outside, brrr. Haha, we don’t know what cold really is as I know this is actually nice weather.

Oh how rude of me, can I get you a cup of coffee or tea? I forgot to offer as I ramble on about the weather. Hmm… I think that’s like an old person ramble isn’t it? haha, I know I am not that old yet, but I know my posts reach others all over the world. I know it’s summer in places as we are wintering! Just filling you all in on this beautiful Southern California weather! We made some decisions this last week and contacted the piano mover and person that came and took our piano for parts. It was a very old parlor grand piano in disrepair and in such bad shape it was not worth the money to repair it. I am happy it went where its parts can be used and now we have some extra room in our garden room. Here are some photos. 😀

You can see the room is now empty. I actually shared about this about a year ago and we finally decided it was time and so I am focusing my energy and any extra money to save for a keyboard as they make some really nice ones and I really miss playing. I play mostly classical music with some of my favorite pieces from Chopin, Beethoven and Rachmaninoff to name a few composers. I’ve enjoyed playing Bach and Debussy as well. I miss playing so much as I’ve held on to this piano which has been so out of tune it truly is unplayable. I’m excited and hope I can get a new electronic piano sometime this year!

Can I get you a refill? I have some Swedish pancakes I made for dinner tonight. I wanted a light dinner and these crepe like pancakes were perfect filled with a little sour cream and raspberry jam. Yummy! I enjoyed them very much and I will eat light if I have a big lunch. My son told me my granddaughter lost her first tooth this last week! She is 6 and in kindergarten and doing great. I miss my grandkids and I will see if we can Facetime tomorrow. They live in Arizona for any new readers to my post. 😀

My horse Chloe and I riding around the block in my hometown of Norco. She is such a good girl!

My horsey fun throughout this last week was fun rides and turn outs as we dry out. As you can see the ground dries out really fast and we were able to ride a couple days after all the soaking rain. It rained for at least 2 weeks maybe 3 on and off sometimes for a few days straight. For us it was a lot of rain which in turns means a lot of snow pack for the mountain ranges all up and down the west. This will help with our droughts that plague our region. I have some more photos to share with my horse back riding fun and just photos of these pretty ponies!

Murphy is doing great and has so much more room in his new stall. I am so happy that he is happy and he is really fun to work with each day. He and I are getting along famously and one of these days I will get a friend to video one of my rides in the arena on him.

I like how she has one ear forward to hear if I am going to say something I think! She knows when we are done riding I will give her horse treats. It wasn’t too difficult to teach her kisses as I kiss her nose and give her a treat, now she pushes her nose at me like you see in the photos hoping I have a treat in my pocket. I keep them in the tack room where I have my saddles and bridles. She can smell them in my pocket, so I can’t keep them there as she is too smart! Haha, these horses are such characters!! I just love them so much! ❤ ❤ ❤

My hubby bought me a selfie stick for Christmas and I haven’t taken it out of the package yet. I actually need to find it as I am not sure where it is after we cleaned all the Christmas stuff up and put everything away. So when I take selfies as I’ve shared before, my arms are not long enough to get all of their head in the shot. And Murphy being even bigger than Chloe it’s twice as hard! Hahaha, I still like taking them!

I hope you all are having a wonderful weekend and I thank you for stopping by for coffee. It’s been fun filling you in on the happenings around here. I want to say that I am truly thankful I can ride all year round here in California as I know there are so many that can’t ride in the winter. I also am thankful for all of you blogging friends and family who take the time to stop by and read my blog. I thank you too for your wonderful comments! I have to thank Natalie who hosts the weekend coffee share and you can visit hers and others by clicking here.

Enjoying Winter Horse Gal,

~Diana ❤

Happy New Year! I Can’t Believe It’s 2022!

Happy New Year to all! As my title states, I can’t believe it is 2022. I made it through Christmas as I accidentally stressed myself out a bit by not being better prepared. There were so many things I wanted to do that I didn’t get too. I wanted to do more baking which I mentioned in my last post. I ended up not baking like I wanted and making all those goodies I usually make during the holidays. The time just got away from me! I did leave the day after Christmas to visit my daughter who lives 3.5 hours north and we had a great time together!

My first photo is a pretty Christmas tree in Solvang, CA. We had so much fun visiting there even though it was raining. We have been getting a lot of weather this last month which we need. Tons of rain and snow in the local mountains. As we walked around Solvang with our umbrellas visiting bookstores I bought a Swedish cookbook and can’t wait to make a thing or two. We visited a few other stores as we meandered around. Here are a few photos I took while there! 😀

What fun I had getting to know my daughter’s girlfriend. We also exchanged gifts while visiting. On Christmas day we zoomed with family as we did a secret Santa exchange with the Elfster app. We have been using this app for about 4 years now and it is nice because it picks the name for us and then we can put items on our wish list which makes shopping easier. Usually all the shopping is done online. It was great to zoom, it’s like we are all together! ❤

I returned home from my daughter’s and it was back to work until New Years. I took two days off so I only worked three days last week which was nice. My daughter drove down here for the New year and left this evening. It was great to see her again, and she helped with our New Year dinner. Traditionally, we have Turkey dinner with all the fixings on Thanksgiving, then for New Years I buy a honey baked spiral cut ham with all the fixings. We include black eyed peas for New Year’s day which is a southern tradition which my mother-in-law always made for us and so I am keeping this tradition going. Eating the black eyed peas is supposed to bring you good luck for the new year. I think we all need all the luck we can get, right? 😀

Oh I have so much to share and could probably break this down to a few posts instead of one very long post! My daughter made from scratch the homemade cheesecake. It was AMAZING and it was a recipe from Chef Tyler Florence. I will have to look it up and make it too as it just melts in your mouth. She happened to have a can of cherry pie filling which we put on top. The ham dinner was amazing as was the middle desserts made by my daughter’s girlfriend who has opened up her own bakery! She is a master baker from Italy and makes amazing chocolates and other baked goods. I had so much FUN! What a great holiday it turned out to be. I’m smiling! 😀

We went to SLO (San Luis Obisbo) and we visited my daughter’s girlfriends bakery which is inside an Italian restaurant. It is small but we got to taste her wonderful baked goods. This is a good way for her to start her business as eventually she will get her own place as it grows. It was a beautiful day as we drove to Pismo beach to get those wonderful cinnamon rolls to bring home to my son and hubby! ❤ (They loved them!)

There’s no easy way to change the subject, so on to my other love, my horses! I will always try to put family first and they are part of my family as well so of course I just have to share. I am thinking ya’ll like to hear how things are going with my ponies as I love to call them. They are certainly far from being ponies, especially that big tall boy Murphy! I recently measured him and he stands at 17.2hh, very tall and as I work with him each day I make sure he respects me since he is so big. He does, it doesn’t take much at all but I need to always be aware of his size. I also never hand feed him any treats as he is rather food aggressive which just means he LOVES food. So it’s best if I want to give him a treat it goes in a bucket in his stall, not from my hands. He gets plenty of pats and loving scratches which he loves.

I have some updates and fortunately for Murphy a couple of horses moved out and two stalls opened up at the barn where I board the horses. These stalls are out in the paddocks and are very big and wide. He is doing great and I can tell really enjoys all the room he has now. I took a little video I will share!

He is doing great in his new digs, Yay!

He is so cute and I wanted to tell you of a fun thing he enjoys. He will lick your hand and as he licks if you hang on to his tongue he will just stick out his tongue while you play with it! Hahaha, I know this sounds weird, but horses can do the funniest things. He is very gentle as he licks and he enjoys this interaction as one of the girls at the barn showed me this the other day. Hey, if it tickles his tongue or he likes the salts off your hand? I’m not sure but It is great fun to pet him and interact with him without any treats of any kind! He is so silly! 😀

My daughter says to me as I bring over my camera “I don’t have any makeup on!” Haha, us horse girls rarely if ever wear makeup! What’s makeup anyways, hahaha!!! She is beautiful without makeup and of course is beautiful all made up too. I actually sat here thinking should I share this photo? Yes, I want to share and send out happy healthy thoughts your way and hope everyone has had a wonderful new year no matter if you celebrated or not. I wonder what 2022 will bring our way? We will see! I’ll end with this quote;

You can't go back and change the beginning,
but you can start where you are and change the ending.
C.S. Lewis

I think of my dad as he loved C.S Lewis. Love you Mom and Dad up in heaven! He passed on New Years day in 2003. ❤ ❤ ❤

Grateful, thankful and feeling blessed,

~Diana ❤