I am exhausted. I rode three horses each day, Saturday and Sunday, but the big work was grubbing out some overgrown bushes on the side of the house, and cleaning out the landscaping around the back of the deck. That was so easy to write, and there was so much work involved in all that! It took two days, the tractor, a shovel, a pitchfork, a rake, my bush nippers, a supervising Jack Russell or two, a tow chain, gardening gloves and sixteen gallons of sweat! The bushes are now gone – the overgrown holly tree is gone – the overgrown evergreen ground cover is gone and a whole lot of pesky ivy vine, too. Along with an old sattelite dish that nearly tipped the tractor over (it was on a 12-foot pole I thought was only a 6 foot pole!) I didn’t pull hard enough on it. OK, five trips with the tractor to dump the vines, weeds, bushes and root balls, and Brian and I thought we would die of exhaustion. When I think people do that all day long, day after day, for a living, it really makes me appreciate my college education.

The bush destruction was not the only work. I also mowed the arena, dragged it, reset the jumps, mowed all over the farm, dumped and refilled water tubs, cleaned stalls, went to Tractor Supply and got the weeks’ bedding, unloaded it from the truck, moved the truck and trailer and mowed some more around the barn. Also planted a tiny garden patch near the front of the barn (just flowers and carrots) with some very old seeds that probably won’t come up, but I thought it was worth a try anyhow. All the horses ridden today, because it was hot, got baths. So that was my weekend and I wonder why I can’t lose weight.

Jax, the oldest Jack Russell, spent all day with me on Saturday, and seemed happy to be outside all day. Charlie, the sick one, is sort of not doing well but he’s holding his own. I think he’s at least partially blind at this point but he is eating, pooping, sleeping. We are not out of the woods on Charlie but he is trying I think to stay with us.

All the horses seem OK – Rugby’s right hind leg doesn’t really seem much better, I guess it will take time. Hamish has his new up front shoes and seems really good. I rode him and even jumped a little on Sunday (four x-rails) and he was very bright to them so I think he is ready to go back to work. George lunged with a lot of neighborhood activity, which he needs. Lucky was good both days. His hind feet are showing some stress and I think he’ll need hind shoes next shoeing, darn it — that means single paddock turnout for him…..too dangerous with hind shoes on to anyone! In fact, he’ll probably whack himself with them, a reminder to turn him out with bell boots and padding on the legs….I think he is allergic to the neoprene lining in the work boots, too. He’s got scunge on the hind legs from the boots used during the cross country school at Carousel on Monday, poor guy. Oh, is there anything he is not allergic or reactive to?

So now it’s Sunday night, I got on the computer to get my work for Monday, and check Facebook news feed for all the eventing news, and cheer or congratulate friends, and now it’s literally time to drop into bed and pray my back will allow me to get up in the morning without passing out from pain. Not likely.

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