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July 11, 2006

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

Hello farmers! and guests.

The fields around us are alive with haying equipment, stacks are getting huge, all of the farmers have hopes of getting second cuttings since we still have some irrigation water, the weather is cooperating for the most part. Ah, summer!

Here on our place we don't make hay, we just grow pasture and lease it to our neighbor. His ewes are here now, about 125 of them. They get up from their bedding spot before dawn and get their breakfast, then bed down and chew their cuds. We have one spot that stays shady until mid morning so they use that and stay as cool as possible. When the sun heats them up they go down to the pond and get a drink and stand around or bed down on a sub irrigated area. I see them using the body of the sheep next to them to shade their heads. When the sun gets low in early evening they go over the hill into the lower elevation of the pasture to eat, and about 2 hours later are coming back to their bedding down spot on high ground. Sheep are funny creatures, they all go somewhere together when one decides to go. The ewes are very quiet without lambs to keep track of, so I seldom hear them, they just start to move silently and soon they are all going somewhere. It's hard to tell if there is a leader, but if I had to guess I would say it's one of the older ones. These sheep are all related so there are many generations who have always been together.

I've got a sprinkler going in the garden, and also some water running gravity flow through a pipe from the spring into the grapes and asparagus. Later I have to go to town so I need to be changing the sprinkler several times before I leave.

My endurance season has been going along well until a few weeks ago when my younger horse was lame at about 35 miles into a 50 mile ride. I gave him some time off, he seemed to be ok and I entered another ride, lame again but the other hind leg this time. The vet suggested maybe he needed some chiropractic work, so this past weekend I hauled him to a ride to have one of the vets there treat him, ( not many vets do chiropractic). Yes, he was out of line, got adjusted, and I will start riding him Thursday for about 1/2 an hour a day just walking for a week, then about the same trotting the following week, and get him back into another endurance ride in about 6 weeks if he seems to be ok. The other horse is being treated for a cough, is on antihistamine and being ridden lightly every day. There is a ride I would like to go to this coming weekend but that might be too soon for him. I should know in a couple of days, have to decide by Friday morning if he goes or stays home.

Have a great day, count your blessings.

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