Saturday, July 07, 2007

horses and apricots

Oh yeah, 7-7-7. Did anything lucky happen in your world today?

A while back I agreed (more or less, depending on whether I can pull off "the secret outfit") to take part in a horse show/playday in late July with my friend W.T. (who owns Sampson, the horse I used to board, remember him?) The original plan for today I think had been to take the horses to the arena and practice the routines. Somewhere along the way I guess that all fell through and the rest of the team couldn't be there, as I found out a few days ago, but whatever, it worked out fine. W and her daughter rode over here today and we set up some barrels in the pasture and went through some of the routines for a few hours. I have a better sense of which ones Shylah can potentially compete in, and a MUCH better idea of what I need to work on (going around barrels!). Plus it was just a fun time out there with the horses, and I will be able to practice on my own now and try to really get Shylah ready for a couple of classes. I am somewhat concerned about Shylah being a bit spooky that day, what with so many new things (I've never done anything like this, my horses have always mostly been homebodies, so this is a good thing!). But I am more concerned about her kicking (horses, not people) because she learned all her manners from Gwen, and that's a bad thing. Ugh. She was decent with W's horse, but did a lot of ears-back tail swishing. Ugh. I really need to post a new pic of Shylah, she's gorgeous! I need to take a new photo..

So by early afternoon the horse activity was done, and I moved onto the next big thing of the day... harvesting the apricots. It was a HUGE disappointment this year. The tree went nuts and produced a gazillion of them, but once again (every year!) they got brown rot even though Mom sprayed the tree 6 times for it, so less than 1/4 of the crop was salvageable. That is.. tragic. Most went straight from the tree to the yuck bucket to the trash, and about half of the "potentially good" ones that I bought in and washed went to the trash when I sliced them open. Anything I ended up using was normal looking, I tossed all gross ones. *sigh*

I still have a lot of containers of leftover puree (coffee cake and cookie filling) in the freezer from two years ago, so I wanted to try something new, and made apricot syrup. The recipe was all screwed up but I sorta fudged it and it turned out good. It was a way small recipe though for some reason, I don't get it. Said it would fill eight 8-oz jars but it only filled two 16-oz jars (that was all I had, big jars). Oh well. I went ahead and put all the rest through the food processor, figuring they'd be bruised by morning. There is enough for a batch of jam, assuming I don't mess that up. I am tempted to raid the neighbor's tree before they get home, but Mom nabbed one today and said they are shriveled up because the tree needs water. Hmm, maybe I'll check it out in the morning. I had these delusions of making jars and jars of jam and syrup and selling them but it doesn't look like there will be enough. Dang it!

Anyway, I didn't sleep well last night so between that and getting up early and being out in the sun much of the day, I've had it. Zzzzz.

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