"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

Hello Friends!

Friends, Romans, countrymen...y'all. Foodies, gardeners, artists and collectors - let's gather together to share and possibly learn a thing or two in the mix.

Donna Baker

Monday, June 27, 2016

My Gracie Girl


My beautiful girl Gracie.  It has been a bittersweet weekend.  I've been trying for a couple of years or more, to find a forever home for her and Brownie, though I had no hopes that anyone would take Brownie because of Brownie's advanced age.

Gracie showed up at the back fence as a yearling.  Dark gray and dappled with a dark mane and tail, she was a sweetheart and came regularly to see me.  The neighbors that owned her are the worst -  all I will say about them.  They neither fed nor cared for her.  So, I started feeding her over the fence
and fell in love with her.

Brownie showed up a few years later.  Her owner from down the road didn't want her and she had been on her own for years, wandering.  I had to start feeding her too as she was the alpha, and would eat Gracie's food.  So, now I was caring for two horses.

The neighbors were divorcing and asked if I wanted to buy Gracie.  We fenced in five acres, built a stall and tack room and brought Gracie to live here at the farm.  She and Brownie would call to each other and were inconsolable.  Brownie is skittish and I had no way of bringing her here except for cutting the neighbor's fence.  But, I did still feed Brownie.  

Brownie did finally find her way over and we put her in with Gracie.  They've been together several years.  Gracie is now eight and Brownie about thirty.  

With my husband's health problems and my joint replacement and other issues, it has become so difficult for us to haul hay (at $16.00 a small bale) and feed bags (at $12.00 a forty pound bag) for protein pellets and bags of oats.  I won't mention they love graham crackers, apples, peanut butter and carrots.  I've spoiled them rotten.

Three forever homes fell through for Gracie.  I was not going to let just anyone have her as they often end up on a truck bound for Mexico to be slaughtered and sold for meat.  Don't get me started.

Well, I found a forever home this weekend.  Gracie is huge, white with dark skin and they figured she must have some draft horse in her as she is so large.  They said they'd ride her and if she wouldn't, then she could just graze the pasture. That is what I wanted for her.  Nothing expected from her; just to live a peaceful life; no one abusing her or neglecting her.  And, they asked if they could take Brownie too.  There are angels still among us. They are only about a half mile away as the crow flies.  

The farm is quiet now.  No more fowl or horses.  It is as if the farm has a golden transparency over it.  Makes me sad to know the end of farm life is nigh, sort of like the many dilapidated farm buildings and barns I see around here.

I went out late last night to look at the stars, as I do every night when I let the weenies out one last time. I was surrounded in total silence.  
I cupped my hands and as loud as I could, I called Gracie Girl.


48 comments:

  1. I just got that prickly-tingly feeling in my nose, the one that is usually followed by a moistening of the eyes, while reading your post. It's a wonderful thing to know that Gracie and Brownie will be taken care of.x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes Bea, it is a blessing to have found the home that the girls did. They love animals, are experienced with horses and good people.

      Delete
  2. She's so beautiful. And bless you. You've added stars in your crown. Horse rescue is so important.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. She is the most beautiful horse, can run like the wind and it was wonderful to see how Brownie finally came to trust.

      Delete
    2. Please keep us updated on how they're doing.

      You have a great one.

      Delete
  3. Donna this is wonderful news! I knew you were dealing with this, and your concern over whether ANYONE would give them a home. I feel pretty happy for the horses, and for you. The quietness of the farm would be very disconcerting, however, knowing everyone has moved on... kinda sad in a way.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes Jeri, I am sure they will be cared for as the new owners are in their forties and have the strength to deal with horses and love them too. It is hard to see the farm so quiet and still. The deer have their babies now and are bringing them around. Something at least.

      Delete
  4. Wonderful news, lovely post but I am in tears.
    Happy that they will be together and also sad that they will be gone from you.
    Maybe you can visit every so often.

    cheers, parsnip and thehamish

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They told me I could. It will take me a while though. I guess it's the whole thing about moving on and getting older; the major changes in life that are hard. Kind of all intertwined - still bittersweet.

      Delete
  5. Like everyone else I am very happy. And my eyes are leaking.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They say horses never forget. I hope they don't forget me. Gracie used to race my truck up the driveway and could run like the wind, tossing her head. That's the image I'll remember of her.

      Delete
  6. Oh Donna. I am pleased that you have found them both a home I really am - but it is a sad time for you. The farm won't be the same without them - time to move on and enjoy your city life full time. I felt the same way when I said farewell to the last of my animals - old age caught up with me and I just couldn't hack all the hard graft that was involved. So I do know what you are going through.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sounds like it Elaine. It is hard as it is tied up with the whole aging thing and health, but I will remember them fondly - and have a whole lot more money and time in the city.

      Delete
  7. This made me cry. I've been reading your blog for some time now, but hadn't commented until today. So glad Gracie and Brownie have a good new home, and wishing you peace and comfort.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for talking to me and the sentiments. I'll have happy memories of them as I have always loved horses. Growing up, I had a quarter horse and rode bareback like a wild child. I was thrown so many time. I never could ride Gracie as she hadn't been ridden enough, needs an experienced rider and if I were thrown now I'd be a broken heap. She'll have a good new life and what is left of Brownie's life will be with Gracie. Brownie is pretty smart and an escape artist and I fully expect to see her at my doorstep one day.

      Delete
  8. Dear Donna, as others have already reported, I'm also typing with moist eyes.

    Yes, there are angels amongst us.

    From what you've told us about Brownie's being an escape artist, perhaps you had best keep a supply of graham crackers and peanut butter around. Just in case.

    xo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'll be ready if she comes. She loves to eat. Usually ate hers fast then ate Gracie's. I was shocked that they even got her roped and loaded.

      Delete
  9. Ooh Donna, my heart is happy :)
    I have wanted to ask if you had found a forever home for beautiful Gracie and sweet Brownie but was afraid of the answer. Now I know, and I thank you for holding on to the hope, and a HUGE Thank You to those kind people who will give the girls there permanent home......
    Hearing this today has renewed my faith in humanity.
    Hugs,
    ~Jo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mine too Jo. I was just shocked they offered to take Brownie. It is very expensive caring for horses and they just happen to have several and love horses. Several other young men offered, but I knew they would have sold Gracie or neglected her and she would have had a terrible life. I know they will be cared for now.

      Delete
  10. You made me cry.
    How fortunate every pet or person to be cared for by you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh Monique. I think I was an animal in another life. Everyone tells me if they come back, they want to come back as my animals. I just seem to be able to communicate with them. Love them so. That however, will change as the day is coming when I won't have any more. I literally can't take losing any more of them. My heart can't break many more times.

      Delete
  11. Well yes, of course I got the hankie out and dabbed a bit - but then I realized what a truly happy story this is.
    Gracie certainly lives up to her name - she looks full of grace in your lovely photo.
    She and Brownie will enjoy their senior years fora long time I think. Bless those neighbors for taking them both.

    Hugs - and go visit when you can, I know they'll miss you .
    Mary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will and will have a pocket full of carrots and apples too. They, the neighbors, are life savers.

      Delete
  12. That made me cry too. Beautifully written. What a wonderful life you've given her, even this newest chapter for her--for them both.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh I am at peace with the care they will receive. They are very good horsemen and women which is what Gracie needed. She had her bluff over me - was my alpha female and so large, I was beginning to fear getting hurt around her. Spoiled rotten, and horses need to know who is boss, something I wasn't trained or hardwired to do. She is going to make a wonderful riding horse.

      Delete
    2. Yes. 'Still a loss and transition for you, but yes. You've had a year of these goodbyes and changes already, so I know your heart hurts.

      Love to you.

      Delete
  13. Well, you had me in tears at the end. So glad you were able to find a home for them both.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm still a little sad but happy too. Horses, because of their sheer size, are dangerous animals and not fully trained, even moreso. We just couldn't physically do it anymore. So, yes, it is all good.

      Delete
  14. It was a lovely story and I'm so glad that you have found them a good home together. You have given them both a wonderful life, the sadness of letting them go must be eased by knowing they will be ok. Sarah x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well said Sarah. I'll never forget them and am a peace that they'll be taken care of.

      Delete
  15. What a lovely story, Donna. I'm so glad it had a happy ending!

    ReplyDelete
  16. These days come to us all Donna - the day when you decide it is all getting too much. I am so glad your story has a happy endind and that you have found new homes from them both. I hope they settle in happily. Will you be able to go over and see them or do you think it is better to let them forget you?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will go one day. It is still kind of painful after such a long time having them at our farm. I definitely feel some cognitive dissonance about their leaving and yet I couldn't have picked a better place for them. I and the horses are very lucky the new owners said yes. I read once that horses never forget.

      Delete
  17. Hope your day has been pleasant and productive.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was, but I took a long nap, something I rarely do. I need to light a fire under me.

      Delete
  18. Have a great Thursday.
    Gracie takes my breath away every time I see that picture.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh Sandra, she used to race my truck up the driveway, tossing her mane and head. So beautiful.

      Delete
  19. And the echo of your call will linger, as long as your heart remembers.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Hope you enjoy your day and that you don't spend it all in the kitchen.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I spent more of it in the kitchen than I wanted, but the family that was here enjoyed it. Hopemyours was good too.

      Delete
  21. This rather breaks my heart, Donna. I've never kept horses and whatever animals I've had have stayed with me to the end of their lives so I can only guess at the heartache of your current experience. Complicated emotions, I'm sure, even though you've now found a good home for Gracie and Brownie.
    Wishing you all, four legs and two, well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mine too Rosemary. I keep them for their lives, but the time came I could no longer haul all the feed and hay. It is complicated as I'm getting older and all that goes with that and it was such a blessing to finally find the new home for the girls. Now, I'm the only old gray mare...

      Delete
  22. Although it's really sad Donna, take heart that you saved two beautiful creatures and gave them a wonderful life AND, you have now found them another lovely home. Getting older makes for change and we all go through that one way or another, don't we ? Will you be able to visit Brownie and Gracie or will they be too far away ? XXXX

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes Jacqueline, growing older comes with so many issues and leaves one wondering, how did I get here this fast? No, they aren't too far and I'll go by before too long. It just made me sad, but was necessary and to have finally found them a forever home is like winning the lottery, for me and the horses.

      Delete
  23. I trust you're having a pleasant productive evening. And let's trust the fireworks are behind us:)

    ReplyDelete
  24. What a beautiful post.....

    I am so happy for you, and for them.

    ReplyDelete

Someone said comments are the heartbeat of blogs. I love to read your comments and learn so much from every one of you. Thanks for taking the time to talk to me.