Be Free

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Autumn 2011 An INCH in time!

Although I posted to the blog last week after we received rain, I decided to just add to that post today, November 22, because the subject is the same! We got MORE rain! Over an inch more this morning! It was pouring when we woke up! I now have some after the storm pics to share!
I knew rain was possible, so, I had moved a couple of days of loose hay off the round bale we've been using for 3 weeks. This round bale is the one that I won at the Fire Station Annual fundraiser Auction in October. It is a magnificent bale and ...
This is all that is left of it. For those that understand these things, you can see the next bale that will be opened behind it is not of the same quality at all.
You'll see that the horses in these pics are all wet. That is their choice. They have shelters to get under. What probably happened is they came out from under their shelters when Kevin left expecting him to feed them. I actually left later today so that I could feed them after the rain stopped; that's how I got these pics in daylight.
Here is the pond/reservoir that accumulates at the gate of Rely's pen. He has dug out a trench in that area when he impatiently paws awaiting his food to be placed in the bucket on the gate. When the puddle is present (it stayed there three days last week), I feed him in another area so that he doesn't have to stand with his feet in the water. Note that the rest of the pen behind does not have standing water; it slopes and drains well.
Behind Buck is the area of his pen that Hub dug out to keep that pen from staying mucky. All the rainwater runs into that low spot creating a temporary pond. The area they stand on to eat is almost dry even after it has just rained.
There is something wonderful in the background of this pic. More than a month ago, Kevin planted some winter grass seed in the 'trap' (a strip we keep reserved for grazing the horses). Although it is not obvious in this picture, there is an electric fence wire keeping the horses from raiding this newly sprouting grass! The rain last week and now today, is bring this grass in thick and in another week or two, the horses will have a fall feast!
Usually I toss their hay on the ground, but when it is wet, I hang it on the fence in haynets for them. Two each today!
On November 15th, we got over 1 1/2 inches of rain. The LORD actually showered us as we left for work, to let us know that He was blessing us along with others, and when we got home and looked in our rain gauge; we found out how incredibly generous He had been! Buck and Ellie had a pond in their pen. I'm glad that hub dug that out so water runs into that area and leaves the rest of their pen sort of high and dry(er). Used to be (back when we got rain at more usual intervals) that their pen got swampy. Now it is more like a beach with a damp shore and then a wading pool in the middle if they want to rinse their feet. Rely and Grace have a similar pond next to their gate. Most of their pen drains well and they don't have to wade in mud unless they elect to. Rely obviously elected to do more than wade in it yesterday; he was mud caked! The others were clean and dry; they'd made use of their run-under shelters. These images were actually taken months ago when it last rained significantly. But, this time, it was dark when we left and dark when we got home, so, we have no photos of the event! These serve the purpose.

And we also don't have photos of the reactions of our ecstatic equines either, but these are probably some we missed!

Up until these showers of blessing things were getting grim. We just all sought shade and the comfort of those going through the trial with us. These are not our horses, but some broodmares commiserating in deep shade during the heat at peak of the day.Some found the tiny oasis here and there created by runoff from hydrants and our outside shower.
The horses didn't exactly do a rain dance, but they raised dust clouds and wished they contained rain!
And in spite of the lack of aesthetics, life went on. These two got engaged! On our property. This is becoming a tradition. For reservations to use our pond for proposing, call soon! Other engagement photos can be made on site.
A superfluous equine is available for atmosphere. He works for hay.
Of course, the horse is totally optional (but he will be disappointed if not hired).
Although our summer went on overlong; the extended daylight hours allowed for some of those summer vacation activities that provide memories we cherish in our later years. Like lying back on a horse's rump and staring up at the clouds through tree limbs. You remember doing this, yes? I do. When I was this age, I lay back on a rump and read a book while the horse grazed! I remember the horse, but not the book!
And grazing privileges, quite strictly enforced, made for some resentment among the natives.
The reason we can't let them out together is they spend more time ripping the sod up with their hooves than they do locating the few surviving grass blades.
Another memorable trip was taken since I last posted to the blog. We went on a 3 day vacation to Carlsbad and Ruidoso. We actually didn't include Buck. But, he would have loved the caverns! Cool, damp and dim!
Again, we thank the LORD for sending us rain! May He be praised everywhere for His mercy!

Monday, August 8, 2011


As the deer panteth for the water...
This post was suggested by my co-worker who has this bird that illustrates our spiritual nature. This bird balances tenuously on a fragile frame. He is hollow and only able to move because of the water within him. When he abstains too long, he dries out, he droops, he shakes. Then, so slowly, hesitantly, he approaches the source of sustenance, perversely holding back as long as he can from imbibing.
Then, he falls forward (as onto his knees) and plunges his face into the water. He soaks it up and it pours into him, reviving him.
He throws back his head in joy! He nods in gratitude. Rocking in bliss. Aren't we like this?
These are hard times in Texas. We are in deep drought.
We seek shade and wait.
Drought is Biblical.
1 Kings 17:1 Now Elijah the Tishbite, said to Ahab, "As the LORD, the God of Israel, lives, whom I serve, there will be neither dew nor rain in the next few years EXCEPT AT MY WORD."
We need the Word of the LORD worse than water in our land.
Job 12:15 If He holds back the waters, there is drought; if He lets them loose, they devastate the land.
Jeremiah 14:1 They did not ask, 'Where is the LORD, who brought us up out of Egypt and led us through the barren wilderness, through a land of deserts and ravines, a land of drought and utter darkness, a land where no one travels and no one lives'?
Haggai 1:11 I called for a drought on the fields and the mountains, on the grain, the new wine the olive oil and everything else the ground produces, on people and livestock, and on all the labor of your hands.'
The young know nothing else. They have not seen green pastures in their day.
The fields are stripped; and the farmers so desperate they are feeding corn stalks.
The creatures look to us, for we are their gods. In their barren spaces only we can save them.
The wild hogs and deer travel to find forage and seeps.
Brushpiles grow as trees die. We cannot burn them.
Firetrucks and firefighters work overtime.
Whereas usually cows would be on pasture, all around us the grass is gone. Hay is going for $120 a round bale, and most folks can't afford to buy it for their cattle. They are taking them to auction. The lines of trailers at the auctions are blocks long. Extra sales are being held to handle the volume. Ranchers are selling off their best stock.
Those who are determined to keep a few head must carry feed to them and fill troughs. Tanks are drying up. The water in the bottom of them is not drinkable.

Weeds are flourishing in the gardens where water is still provided.

This is our showerhead. We are taking outdoor showers. The runoff makes a patch of green in the hardpan.

Buck is privileged to mow it for us.
Toads gather in the shower during the night.

I do not criticize Him for the means He chooses to cause us to turn to Him. I know that there are more folks turning to Him, calling out to Him, looking to Him to save them. He has our attention; we know in our parched souls that without Him we shall perish. He must slake our thirst. He alone can lead us through this drought both physically and spiritually.