Yesterday evening I helped #1 son move some more of his stuff to his new house, which happens to be 62 miles away. He and his fiance have rented a house and have been in the processs of getting moved in before Saturday, the "Big Day". She has all her stuff moved. She's been on her own pretty much for the last 4 years since she went away to college. #1 son, has been living here at home. As he has repeatedly stated "I'm on sabbatical." Yesterday, she reminded him, his sabbatical is OVER!
Ok, so I have to leave for the evening which means on this little farm, Mom isn't around to take care of "the kids" and evening feed. We were on the road before Hubby got home from work. I told #2 son I had no special instructions for "the kids" tonight, just do what we usually do. This means, Hubby will likely decide to move Bo and Spirit into one of 4 small areas we have fixed up for evening grazing. I left without a care in the world. Happy to spend some time with #1 son and his soon-to-be wife.
My evening of moving stuff went fine. I took the kids out to eat. We're all on tight budgets with this wedding event coming up so we chose to eat at Arby's after we got stuff moved into the house. The stuff, by the way, would be 12 boxes of books and two bookshelves. My son and his fiance are avid readers, not to mention they've kept just about every college textbook they ever bought! We do love our books!
After we had lugged all the book boxes up the steep stairs to the living area, She told him: "We're going to need more bookshelves!" I find this amusing yet refreshing at the same time. I was thinking, how many 22 and 25 year olds are worrying about more bookshelves? Just not something most young people their age think about. So, after getting my load unpacked from my truck, we had driven 2 separate trucks, I told #1 son I was heading back home before dark. He told me he'd be home later and I headed back down the highway.
I got home around 9pm which is pretty much dark around here this time of year. Especially down in the valley where we live. I told Hubby about the move and a few things that occured over the day. Then I asked how the horses behaved. He informed me that they didn't behave very nicely.
First off, he told me, the horses were being butts (his term, I'm surprised he didn't just say asses) while he and #2 son were trying to groom them. Bo was moving around alot, which he doesn't usually do with me. Spirit kept walking away from Hubby. They didn't have the horses tied in the stall, which I often don't either if I'm brushing them. I'm thinking, right there, "the kids" already know they're gonna have some fun tonight.
Hubby said they walked out to the grass fine. They always do. They know they will soon be in green grass heaven for a little while.
Seems upon trying to bring them back to their stall area, about an hour later, Bo decided he doesn't have to listen to #2 son, walked a few steps, dropped his head and began eating the fresher grass outside of the enclosure.
Spirit decides (in my mind) that Mom isn't with me so I don't have to listen to HIM and is very belligerent about walking back to the stall area. Hubby was with Spirit and said he did everything he could think of to get Spirit to start walking and finally gave him a swat on the backside with his hand, which did work.
#2 son told the tale of Bo walking up toward the house, practically pinning him to the side of the house (a bit exaggerated I believe) then trying to trot away when he pushed him off. Bo usually isn't that ambitious.
Ok, guys, now this was a simple task and I don't have this problem with these horses! Then I remembered, #2 son really hasn't been around all that much for the past four years because he's been away at college. He's really never messed around the horses much. I finally asked him last night if I ever gave him any lessons on how to work with the horses. He told me no, and he really didn't know what he was doing around them or the right way to handle them.
Well, he is excused from his blunders, but Hubby I was a little disappointed in. I know he's not completely comfortable with Spirit (or the horses in general). I'm the only one who is, and I'm pretty sure Spirit has figured this one out.
Just the night before #1 son was moving Spirit from the evening graze area, while I was walking Bo. I had Bo back in the stall, and noticed #1 son and Spirit were not behind us. I heard voices. Tied Bo up in the stall and went to see what the hold-up was. The voice I heard was #2 son grumbling at Spirit, lifting on the lead rope trying to get Spirit's head up from the grass. I had to laugh a little.I had expected more from #1 son because he's been around here and knows what he's suppose to do with the horses. Spirit was locked on the grass and would not move. By the time I started walking toward them, Spirit was in a locked leg stance, head up, a bit of a defiant look on his face. I shook my finger at him "Now look who you've got coming, Mister." Without hesitation, when I took the lead rope from #1 son, Spirit walked fine for me and didn't even try for the grass anymore.
I later asked #1 son what he was thinking as he went to get Spirit. He told me he was thinking "this guy is going to give me trouble." I said, "There you go. Always think about how You want it to go. They WILL know what you're thinking."
So, anyway, the kids were a little wiley and misbehaving while Mom was gone last night, but everything worked out in the end. I now know I need to give #2 son some instruction on how to properly handle a horse on a lead and some other details about horses I obviously haven't shared with him. I really hadn't realized #2 son was that uncomfortable around the horses, although I had sensed it at times. He hasn't been all that willing to jump in and care for the horses. Now I know, it's simply because he has not felt he knows the right ways handle them. We can remedy that!
Good news about Xena, to a point. She seems to be stronger these past couple of days. I changed her food to can food. Hubby thinks she has been having trouble eating the dry food and maybe she has just been weak. She actually seems a little stronger and even walked up on the porch last night to lay on her rugs and bedding. She still wobbles around with those darn weakened back legs, but at times, she has run after the two little dogs when they are play running around the yard. So, we watch and we try to care for her, to keep her comfortable. As long as she can move around on her own, eats her food, and other necessities, I feel we will leave well enough alone for the time being.