February 19, 2014

More land...and a house?

Well, unfortunately that 4 acre piece of land we were looking at didn't end up working out. As beautiful as it was, it was overpriced beyond our budget. I was also struggling with the idea of keeping three horses on a four acre piece of land when 1.5 acres minimum would be dedicated to house/arena/outbuildings. There are ways to do it, but still, I was struggling with it. So it's for the best really that the dollars just didn't line up...especially given what we looked at today!

This past weekend we did our now routine stalker potential buyer drive-bys. I know a lot of people just make their realtors case places for them and have them take them to look at a million houses. However, our realtor is a friend, who is a hard worker (not just a realtor) and has a young family and a busy schedule. As such, we try to give him a break and do most of the ground work ourselves. After all, who gets a master's degree if they don't like research? We have to put those degrees to work one way or another. Anyway, we don't want to waste his time or make homeowners jump through hoops if we aren't seriously interested in a property. Really, that's just not a cool thing to do in my book. Can you say, tire kicker? That is just not me. So, ever since our house went on the market, we've begun a weekend ritual of doing Google earth inspections followed by drive-by's. When we drove up to this place last Saturday and both of us were instantly interested, we decided that it was about time we actually set foot in a potential new home. That happened this afternoon.

A brief summary: it's a 20-min drive from downtown, but still in our school district. Big check! Ten acres. Rock on! The house is a humble 1980's era (but renovated) 2500sf house, amazing 360ยบ mountain views, an old barn "shop", and has a really big four sided run-in with a sliding barn door. The perimeter fencing is not horse safe and would need to be replaced, but otherwise the place is really clean, updated, and move-in ready. The moment I fell in love with the place though? When I found the automatic anti-freeze waterer in the fence-line between the pasture and the dry-lot which, while there are no horses on the property now, is working perfectly. I hate filling water troughs and I hate the unreliability of water trough heaters. It was seriously love at first sight!

Happy trails and swooshing tails!

February 12, 2014

Why the horse addiction?

I know that we all get asked this question in one form or another from the well intentioned and caring non-horse people in our lives. For my part, I've found it nearly impossible to explain. Horses just make everything right in my life. When I don't have a horse, I get by, but there is just always something missing. Then today, one of my cousins who is in her 20's, posted a link to this blog post today. I thought, heck I'll read it. I'm way to old for it to be relevant, but I have five more minutes of nap time left...

I am reading down the list, thinking to myself "yeah, that would have been good to know when I was in my 20's, yada yada yada". Then BAM! Big ole #8 basically explained horse addiction as I see it.

"8. Find something that makes you feel like the world makes sense, even if you can't justify it intellectually to yourself or anyone else. Personally, if I don't rock a wall, get up, get laid, get down on a dance floor, read a good book, write a poem, listen to a mind-blowing record or have a soul-shaking, satisfying conversation at least once a week, the world doesn't make sense to me and I am unmoored. If I don't get these things for a month, I become a total, inconsolable, incomprehensible wreck. This wreck can easily snowball into all kinds of self-destruction. Find what works for you and be loyal to it as a loyalty to yourself."-http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mensen/19-things-i-wish-someone-_b_4748182.html

When I am at a barn riding, grooming, or even simply mucking a stall the world just makes sense. Rationally (except for the 1%), having a horse in today's society doesn't make any sense at all. Not from a financial or safety stand point. But we all know that. We just don't care, because for us (or me anyway) horses make the world make sense. We get a break from all the crazy and stress in life (plus some easy exercise). When I am spending time with my horse, 100% of my attention is on that horse. There is no room to think about anything else. No way for the craziness and stress of life to creep  in. I get a break from it all, at least for a couple hours.

Happy trails and swooshing tails!

February 10, 2014

Jack Leg / Buck n' Rail fence?

There have been a lot of developments around these parts in the last few weeks. I've been so busy, that in fact I haven't had much time to day dream about in-utero foals or broodmares. This is a good problem to have!

For Sale!

  1. House Update:Our house is fully on the market, and we've had several showings already. Which is shocking as it is the middle of winter; we've had a week of arctic weather, followed up by massive amounts of perfect skiing powder. Oh wait, the showings all happened before that...but none the less three showings already, so that is encouraging at least.
  2. Land Update:We have been seriously looking a piece of property that is not yet on the market. We were introduced to the land owners through a friend. It's a beauty. 4+ acres, year round creek, flat, mature trees, and....1/4 mile to one of the best k-8 schools (public!) in our district. The asking price is a little high, but it is almost impossible to find property like this. So we are currently trying to figure out if with the higher priced land we can still build the house, shop, barn & fencing. Right now everything is a numbers game. So, very exciting stuff!
Photo by Peggy W

That brings me to my big question. We are looking at building jack leg (buck and rail) fencing, mostly because it is half the cost of building post & rail...which is what I was always planning to build. Also, we are building a farm house with natural wood siding and it will go well with the architecture. I don't have an issue with the look or function of the fence, and in Montana it is suiting. However, I have no personal experience with jack leg fencing and horses, so I was wonder what you all think in terms of horse safety? It would be the perimeter fencing for the pasture (3-acres for 2 horses & 1 pony), as well as the arena fencing. The dry lot area would have hot tape along the top rail as well. Curious to hear the pros (aside from cheap and easy build) and cons!

Happy trails and swooshing tails!


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