Around the Homestead

Casper the Super-friendly Cat up for Adoption

AUGUST 26: CASPER UPDATE Great big thanks to our neighbor Brandon Lane Darrin who recognized Casper, the mucho-cool cat who showed up at our barn this week. It turns out Casper is “Kit Kit”, our neighbor’s cat. He disappeared in late March and has been reunited with his family, a mom and dad and three kids. A great ending to the story. Our barn’s a little quiet now since he left….

Casper is a trusting cat. This photo was taken… Continue reading

How to Catch a Snake in Your House

I was taking a nap when I heard my wife Julia say, “honey, can you come here?” I walked into the kitchen and saw Julia looking at the cookstove. Our cookstove is a two-burner camp stove hooked to a twenty-pound propane tank. It’s black and greasy. I didn’t see anything. Then I saw the black snake next to the pot we boil our coffee in.

The snake and the pot

The bottom of the snake’s head was white and so… Continue reading

In Praise of Salamander Water: Part 1: The Dry Tap

“There’s no water in the kitchen sink,” my wife Julia told me recently and I knew it was one of two things. Our water comes from a spring behind our cabin. Either a salamander or a crayfish had gotten stuck in the plumbing or the cistern that gathered the spring water was empty.

A crayfish we found walking up the driveway one recent frosty morning. They sometimes get stuck in our water supply.
Julia in the kitchen the day we… Continue reading

Off With Her Shoes (Part 1 of the 3 Part Series on Transitioning to Hoof Boots)

A while back my wife Julia and I pulled the steel horseshoes on her pony Pie’s front feet. I thought you’d be interested how we’re transitioning her (Pie, not Julia) to bare feet. From here on out, she’ll go barefoot. For extra protection Pie might need on rocky trails or abrasive surfaces like asphalt, we’ll slap on a pair of hoof boots.

Julia removing the nails from one of the horse shoes she’s taking off Pie. Pie looks pretty chill… Continue reading

Happy New Year 2022

Happy 2022. Here are a few photos from ’21 that made me smile. I wish you all the best in the New Year.

Bernie

Mule Polly checking out the new bed I built for my brother Christian when he came to visit. It’s built of red cedar and two-by-fours. In case you haven’t seen it already, Polly was the mule that pulled my wagon 14 months across America for the Lost Sea Expedition documentary which you can stream here on… Continue reading

Hill Top Sunday Morning

Pony Pie on a hill (Caldwell County, NC / western NC)

Sunday greetings from high above the Shoe Box Canyon. Yesterday, my wife Julia and I rode to the top of the mountain behind our cabin. I thought you’d enjoy some photos of the ride.

Julia rode her pony Pie. I rode my mule Cracker. From the clearing high above the cabin, we just looked out over the Brushy Mountains to our South. We listened to the “chimp pang” call… Continue reading

Springing Toward Summer

Saddles on our porch: I rode the one on the left from Atlantic to Pacific oceans and the one on the right from here in western North Carolina to Idaho

Happy Easter Sunday to you. The leaves are darkening up, the mules are getting shiny and Snookie is panting in the dirt under the back porch. My wife Julia just posted a beautiful essay on spring moving ahead toward summer here up the Shoebox Canyon. Read the full story, with… Continue reading

Weekend Plans

Want to attend a Dog Hair Cutting Festival with my wife Julia and me this weekend? How about a Mule Ride. You might get a good one. You may not. Fun like Russian roulette!

Hey, how about a ride on a humpbacked mule. Nice! (Skye Pincock Evans photo)

You can tell Julia and I have a little too much time on our hands this weekend. She wrote an invitation to our neighbor P to join us for any or none… Continue reading

Adjusting Pie’s Hoof Boots (Part 3 of the 3 Part Series on Transitioning to Hoof Boots)

How do you adjust a pair of new hoof boots?

Nice new hoof boots. But how do you get them to fit?

In today’s post, I’ll show you how I’m adjusting a pair of hoof boots to fit my wife’s pony Pie. To get you up to speed, here are the first two parts in this three part series.

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