New Year 2018 Haibun Poetry


New Year 2018 Haibun Poetry

Photo Credit

The big step for me from 2017 to 2018  has taken place, I’m now looking ahead in 2018 and wondering what it will bring for me, as my health is not as I would like it to be, struggling some days with the pain in my head and face.

2017 has been a year of writing, (mostly poetry), October was my best month writing mainly for Carpe Diem Winter Retreat 2017, 63 posts a record for me in one month. Then in November, I wrote for NanoPoblano.

Now I have 987 posts on my website, 1600 followers, and 56,666 views

has arrived-let the light shine
brightly on my soul

Happy New Year to all my friends, may 2018 be a very successful year for you all, writing and laughing.

All About Horses


All About Horses

How do you know you are a horse lover?

Is your first and second favorite animal, a horse?

Is your bedroom covered with horse posters on your walls and horse models on your shelves?

Would you rather muck out a stall and groom your horse, than clean your room?

Then you are absolute, undeniably a horse lover.

When you go to bed, wake up in the morning, with one thing on your mind, “horses” well for sure you are horse crazy.

Enjoy it, you know you are a horse lover.

Horse Lover Video

If you have a horse lover in your family, you most likely have had horses around and in their life for many years.

Riding horses is a very popular sport, there are many horse lovers that spend their weekend or a day away trekking along tracks and thick bush.

Lot’s of mothers do this, my daughter, grand daughter, and great grand daughter do, it’s a very good way of relieving stress after a hard week, let dad look after the household for a day, and enjoy the ride, you will feel like a new woman, after your ride. Enjoy.

Megan Hagley

The terminology used to describe horses of various ages!

Foal: a horse of either sex less than one-year-old.

Yearling: a horse of either sex that is between one and two years old.

Colt: a male horse under the age of four.

Filly: a female horse under the age of four.

Mare: a female horse four years old and older.

Stallion: a non-castrated male horse four years old and older.

Gelding: a castrated male horse of any age.

My Grand Daughter with her horse 

Megan horse jumping

Horses Digestive Systems

Horses are herbivores with a digestive system adapted to a forage diet of grasses and other plant material, consumed steadily throughout the day.

Horses are not ruminants, so they have only one stomach, like humans, but unlike humans, they can digest cellulose, a major component of grass.

Cellulose digestion occurs in the cecum, or “water gut”, which food goes through before reaching the large intestine.

Unlike humans, horses cannot vomit, so digestion problems can quickly cause colic, a leading cause of death in horses.


Photo Credit

Horses Sleeping Pattern

While searching the internet about horses, I read this, which surprised me as I have been around horses most of my life and I never realized this. So I’m sharing it with you.

Horses are able to sleep both standing up and lying down.

In an adaptation from life in the wild, horses are able to enter light sleep by using a “stay apparatus” in their legs, allowing them to doze without collapsing.

Horses sleep better when in groups because some animals will sleep while others stand guard to watch for predators.

A horse kept alone will not sleep well because its instincts are to keep a constant eye out for danger.

Unlike humans, horses do not sleep in a solid, unbroken period of time but take many short periods of rest.

Horses spend four to fifteen hours a day in standing rest, and from a few minutes to several hours lying down.

Total sleep time in a 24-hour period may range from several minutes to a couple of hours, mostly in short intervals of about 15 minutes each.

The average sleep time of a domestic horse is said to be 2.9 hours per day.

Horses must lie down to reach REM sleep.

They only have to lie down for an hour or two every few days to meet their minimum REM sleep requirements.

However, if a horse is never allowed to lie down, after several days it will become sleep-deprived, and in rare cases may suddenly collapse as it involuntarily slips into REM sleep while still standing.

A 450-kilogram (990 lb) horse will eat 7 to 11 kilograms (15 to 24 lb) of food per day and, under normal use, drink 38 litres (8.4 imp gal; 10 US gal) to 45 litres (9.9 imp gal; 12 US gal) of water.

Today domestic horses are found all over the world, with a population estimated at around 60 million.

Memories Abandoned Hut


Memories Abandoned Hut

Photo that brings back memories

Now there was something spiritual stirring in my heart, it made me feel very restless.

I remember a scene just like the photo above in the1940’s as a child.

Maybe it was because of living in a tin shack with my mother and father and three sisters right under a mountain, the winter days were nothing but mist and clammy cold frosty weather, we never had much warmth.

It was during the war years and there wasn’t a lot of money or food around, we lived on coupons, friends and neighbors would swap and give my parents what they could spare to feed us.

Double Pneumonia

Photo Credit 

Old poster that suits the situation

Double Pneumonia

I was always sick and one particular time I was having a nightmare about big spiders climbing up the wall and attacking me, I had a very high temperature, ended up in hospital, with double pneumonia.

That was due partly because of living in that tin shack under the mountain.

Back to the Picture of the Abandoned Hut

Yes, it was the scenery I seen for many years, there was a wet soggy swamp down the bottom of the shack, that was always worrying me as I got stuck in it once and never ever when back to it, as it scared the living daylights out of me as swampy ground still does to this day.

The thought is that I should sink right out of sight and never be seen again, I can assure you that over the years of breaking in second growth bush back into dairy land, I did see a cow do exactly that, sink in quicksand type of mud.

I went back to that tin shack in the 1960’s to check it out, it was still standing, someone was storing bales of hay in it, it still gave me that uncanny feeling of despair.

Still looking into the distant while standing by the fence right there in my memory, I can see this photo of my first ten years of life, the only difference is that this picture is a stone shack, my home was corrugated tin, I still have that feeling of something lost I cannot quite place it in my memory.

Something terrible had happened there, I don’t know what, but it’s in the fog of my mind, I want very much to find it and set my body to rest.

Who did those footprints belong to that will not go away in my mind?

Footsteps In A Snowy Forest

Footsteps In A Snow

Photo Credit


While looking into the mist,
Appearing around the corner of the old shack
a monster loomed up scaring me half to death
The picture to this day I haven’t seen it again.

There were big eels slivering along the grass in the daylight
I came upon one once all nine inches in girth as long as the eye could see.
As my cousin thought it fun to scare me by letting it slip through his hands
Maybe that was the monster that frightens me in my sleep.

I don’t think so.
Or was it a rat?
They were as big as cats in those days they would sneak out of the river bank,
Grab any food they could they were not afraid of anything, even me.

Maybe it was just a rabbit popping out of his burrow
looking for a nice crisp bit of bush clover to eat
No, it was not that, rabbits were cute
No one could be afraid of them.

Or was it Bigfoot, what does he look like?
Would you see footsteps in the snowy forest?
So many stories about that creature.
I’m just guessing, not knowing if there is truly such a thing as Bigfoot

Whatever lurks in that fog
I sure don’t want to meet up with it.
No snakes or bears or wolfs in our land
Wish my memory would tell me what lurked there in that mist, so many years ago

I think I will abandon the thought and go back to dreaming.
Maybe that creature will appear again in the distant future
Settle my thoughts of severe, stress of things gone wrong.
Something terrible happened there in the mist beside that abandoned shack.

Abandoned house in MD 3 – The shed

Have you had a picture that brings back bad memories from the past?

Like answering Questions?

The Blended Blog

Like answering Questions?  Here’s a new list I found over at Teleportingweena’s blog. Please click the link to see her answers, and where she found them. 

Some fun questions, here is the list you can copy and paste.

1. Favorite animal?
2. Wine or beer?
3. Socks on/off while sleeping?
4. One piece or two piece bathing suit?
5. Cooking at home or eating out?
6. Pepsi or Coke?
7. Regular or electric toothbrush?
8. Candy or chocolate?
9. Coffee or tea?
10. Music or talk radio?
11. Chick flick, action movie or documentary?
12. Regular or mechanical pencil?
13. Swimming or laying out?
14. Dog or cat?
15. What do you drive? SUV, van or sedan?
16. Early bird catches the worm or night owl?
17. If you could eat only one food for the rest of your life what would it be?
18. While sleeping: Phone in room by your side or phone in another room?
19. Singing in the shower, yes or no?
20. Oreo cookies, Eat whole? Take apart and/or dunk?

Here are my answers

1. Favorite animal?  I love all animals, that’s why I enjoy farming life.
2. Wine or beer? Red wine, a small glass every night with tea.
3. Socks on/off while sleeping?  Off
4. One piece or two piece bathing suit? Don’t swim, if I did it would be a one piece.
5. Cooking at home or eating out? Cooking at home.
6. Pepsi or Coke? Neither, Water for me.
7. Regular or electric toothbrush?  Regular.
8. Candy or chocolate?  Candy, not too sweet, chocolate gives me a headache.
9. Coffee or tea? Drink both, Morning Tea, Coffee, rest of the day tea, Ginger tea before I go to bed, settles my stomach.
10. Music or talk radio?  Talk Radio, which plays ten songs, then a break with ads, news, etc
11. Chick flick, action movie or documentary? Not sure what click flick is, don’t watch Television very much if I do it’s usually Animal Planet.
12. Regular or mechanical pencil? What’s a mechanical pencil? As I don’t know I suppose it must be a normal pencil.
13. Swimming or laying out? Neither, spend most of my day at the computer or walking with my husband for exercise.
14. Dog or cat? Both, as I said at the top all animals.
15. What do you drive? SUV, van or sedan? When I drove it was a sedan, I still have a drivers license but my husband does the driving now, which is not often, we stay at home, we both have cancer.
16. Early bird catches the worm or night owl? Both, it doesn’t matter what time I go to bed I always wake up 6.00 am, that’s 30 years of going out to work which started at 7.30am.
17. If you could eat only one food for the rest of your life what would it be? Sweets with lots of whipped cream and ice cream on even in the winter.
18. While sleeping: Phone in room by your side or phone in another room? I have a landline phone beside my bed I don’t take my cell phone to bed it is left in the lounge.
19. Singing in the shower, yes or no? No, can’t sing since I lost half my top lip with ACC cancer, before that I would sing anywhere I loved singing.
20. Oreo cookies, Eat whole? Take apart and/or dunk? I don’t know what Orea cookies are, but I dunk Ginger biscuits in my coffee at morning tea time.

I’d love to read your answers, please leave a link in my comments, or you can leave your answers in my comments if you don’t want to put them on your blog.

Teaching the Value of Money

Piggy bank with coins

Teaching the Value of Money

In a recent GoBankingRates study, 69% of adults admitted to having less than $1,000 in the bank, while 34% said they actually don’t have any savings at all. But apparently, this collective lack of savings doesn’t get all that much better with age. A study by the National Bureau of Economic Research found not so long ago that almost half of Americans die nearly broke. Of the general population, 46% of retirees die with savings of $10,000 or less. But that number climbs to 57% among retirees who are single.

It is never too early to start teaching children to save, these days toddlers know what money is, and by the age of two with your help, they can buy an article and have even learned what the coins are.

Climbing piggy chart


My Thought’s about Children and Saving

Children have lost the way to save these days as EFTPOS and Credit Cards have taken over the money scene, they never see real money.

All children ever see is a card that is added to a machine and out comes money or a card pay’s for the articles they buy, the young ones never ever see coins or paper money, so how are they to learn about the value of money.  

A program in responsible cash management could be a good idea in schools, at a young age. This would give children with parents who are dysfunctional in that area a chance to not follow in their footsteps and perhaps teach them how to save.

Teaching some of the complexities of money at an early age (in terms the child can understand) helps to set a regular practice of viewing money as a means of subsistence and not a ticket to the mall.

In many cases just teaching the children to put their money in a bank won’t teach the value of proper handling of money if the parents are spendthrifts.

Maybe it would be an idea for your child’s fifth birthday, buy then a money box and start them on their way of saving, add some money every year on their birthday.

Money Box NZ coins

Learning to save at school in the 1970’s

Schools do not teach the skills these days to learn the value of money as they did back in the 1970s when my children were going to school.

In New Zealand the Post Office had a weekly banking where children learned to fill out a form and bank money every week, watching the amount mount up weekly, they would get paid interest at the end of the financial year on their savings.

I remember mine would come home from school all excited how much money they had in they Post Office account sometimes they would just sit there looking at this all-important bank book, I used to wonder what was going through their minds.

This saving habit was only done at primary school, once they went to high school it was transferred to a bank account which they open themselves had a talk with the bank clerk which made them feel very important and started them on their career of work and saving a little every week of their earnings, they would bring their bank account to me to see, so proud of it and I was very proud of them.

By the time they were ready to set up their own home they had already set up a good relationship with their bank which continued on through their life, but all children are not as lucky as this to know the value of saving and setting goals for their future.

Now in the twenty-first century, there is not enough encouragement for children to save, they receive a few dollar, run to the nearest store and spend it no idea about saving, I see it around me all the time, so much money wasted on sweets or just plain junk.

70 year old piggy bank

I know even though I don’t need a money box to save money I really enjoyed that little piggy above, I received for my seventh birthday at a family get-to-gather.

That day (My Seventy Birthday), it made me feel so good, as I watch my family, add a few coins in it, watch by the grandchildren and great-grandchildren and now some nearly seven years later when they visit they ask me how much money I have saved?

I do add some occasionally. One day whoever breaks that piggy will get a surprise how much money is in there.

I’m sure my great grandchildren will never forget that day, on my seventh birthday.

Looking forward to your thought’s about teaching children the value of saving.

All About Pigs

One little pig

All About Pigs

Pigs are highly social and intelligent animals.

Because of the similarities between pigs and humans, pigs are used for human medical research.

A pig uses its snout to dig into the soil to find food, has a very acute sense organ, and because of the excellent sense of smell, they are used to find truffles in many European countries.

Pigs have panoramic vision it is thought they have no eye accommodation

Where's my Mum, I want a feed

Pigs have small lungs in relation to their body size and are thus more susceptible than other domesticated animals to fatal bronchitis and pneumonia.

Pigs also can acquire human influenza.

Because of their relative lack of sweat glands, pigs often control their body temperature using behavioral thermoregulation. Wallowing, which often consists of coating the body with mud.

Older pigs will consume three to five gallons of water per day.

Sows may savage their own piglets, often if they become severely stressed so that maybe what happened in this situation, as the piglet were not ours, it was given to us knowing we would spend the time needed to keep it alive.

I am a coke bottle baby.

Pigs can be aggressive in defending themselves and their young, as my young grandson found out when he went into the shed to have a look at the piglets, lucky for him we had a hay baler in the corner of the shed, he managed to get behind it, lucky as I don’t know what would have happened to him, but he never when near any pig after that even though they would always follow anyone thinking they would get a feed.

He is an adult now with children of his own, we often bring up the subject and have a good laugh, though it wasn’t funny at the time.

I feel full now

Domestic pigs are intelligent and can be trained to perform numerous tasks and tricks, you don’t even need to train them for some things.

I had nine piglets one time to rear as their mother died at birth, they were reared indoors as day old piglets, needing to be kept warm and feed regularly all night long, I had a radio going all the time, those piglets never grunted or made noise like a pig, as they had never heard the mother pig, but those piglets could sing beautiful tunes just like the music they had heard on the radio, they even spoke human language that you could understand.

When they got older they were put in the shed with a heat lamp above them, every morning we would put them in a wheelbarrow and take them to a cage pen to feed on grass etc, wish I had a photo of those piglets sitting in the wheelbarrow with very little room to move, they never jump off, sometimes I think it is easier to rear piglets than bringing up teenagers, at least they never answered back. Ha ha.

Happy little pig

Pigs are not a dirty animal as everyone says, they will use one corner of the building to pass motions etc, it was never scattered all over the building like most of the other animals, they keep their beds clean, even the piglets never soiled their bed.

Quote to end this post   Winston Churchill famously said that “Dogs look up to man. Cats look down to man. Pigs look us straight in the eye and see an equal.”


Photo Credit  –  A pig trained to find truffles.

Usnea Lichen Growing on Trees

Usnea Licken on Plum Trees

There has been a problem with the trees in the garden for some time now.

So I decided to do some study about this lichen, which I did not know the name of when I started researching.

Having researched this subject thoroughly, I still believe it does kill trees that it host on, as I have the proof of dying trees for the last ten or more years.

Of all the sites I have visited they all say that lichen should be viewed positively, their presence tells us that we live in a healthy environment and they give any garden an established look.

It is said that “lichens prefer areas with clean air, so are more common in rural districts” that may be true as we live in the high country with bush growing all around us and very little traffic, so if Usnea is very sensitive to air pollution, especially sulfur dioxide, the air is clear of that.

There is a lot of lichen growing in the bush reserve which surrounds our farm, also which I consider isn’t good, the possums are coming from the bush into the garden, if it is spread by spores they will be carrying it on their feet, therefore, that will be settling the spores on the trees.

If not then how does it start growing?

It is said that its spread by the wind.

I have found out that this gray-green fuzzy stuff covering many of my trees is one of the gentlest yet strongest immune tonics in the herb world.

But that does not make me feel happy about this lichen as it is unsightly in the garden.

The growth of algae, lichens, and moss may be more common on plants lacking vigor, so their presence could indicate that attention is needed, particularly on old fruit trees, in saying that this, the photo below was a very health plum tree until the lichen start taking over and it died.

Dead Plum Tree

Dead Plum Tree

Three Questions I have researched about Old Mans Beard – Usnea

  • What is Usnea?

Usnea is a lichen which is an organism that has characteristics of a Fungus and Algae.

  • How to tell if it is Usnea Lichen?

Elastic Thread in Usnea Lichen

Break the stalk of Usnea (thallus). If there is an elastic, white cord running down the center, then it is Usnea.

  • Does Usnea grow from spores?

By searching this question I have made the conclusion that it must be spores that nest onto the bark and germinate to start the beginning of the Usnea growth.

Lichen on Maple Tree

Lichen on  Maple Tree

By my study, everything is pointing against Usnea killing trees.

I do not agree.

My guess is lichen growing on trees is harmful to the trees, even though they are saying that the lichen does not extract nourishment from the trees when entering the inner bark and clinging to the tree branches where food is available from the tree.

My garden looks unsightly and I’m slowly removing the trees, but more seem to have lichen growing on them every month, I have tried pulling it off of them on the young trees but it continues on growing.

You can see by the photo below that Usnea does not need trees as a host as it is growing from an old basketball ring and surviving very well, it has the sun on it all day when the sun shines.

Lichen growing on Metal

Lichen growing on Metal.

The Cherry tree below is only about five years old and the lichen has already started growing on the trunk.

Cherry Tree

What are your thought’s about Usnea Lichen?

Have you seen it before, or do you have it growing where you live?

It hard to believe that it grows on sick or dying trees due to the pre-existing loss of canopy leaves.

If that is true it won’t be long before I have no trees.

Appreciate any comments.

One Word Meme


One Word Memeone word (which is ironically two)

Started at Lori’s blog (As the Fates Would Have It) to play with! It’s called One Word Meme and is originally from shelter life photography.

You can use only ONE WORD to answer each phrase. Let’s play!

1. Where is your cell phone? desk
2. Your hair? grey
3. Your dad? heaven
4. Your other half? reading
5. Your favorite food? ice-cream
6. Your dream last night? complicated
7. Your favorite drink? coffee
8. Your dream/goal? animals
9. What room you are in? lounge
10. Your hobby? Crocheting
11. Your fear? rain
12. Your home away from home? farm
13. Where were you last night? bed
14. Something that you aren’t? hairdresser
15. Muffins? blueberry
16. Wish list item? happiness
17. Where did you grow up? Taranaki
18. Last thing you did? breakfast
19. What are you wearing now? clothes
20. Your TV? hate
21. Your pets? animals
22. Friends? rare
23. Your life? focused
25. Missing someone? grandchild
26. Favorite breakfast food? toast
27. Something you’re not wearing? hat
28. Your favorite movie w/one-word title? Jaws
29. Your favorite color? mauve
30. When is the last time you laughed? today
31. Cried lately? no
32. Who will repost this? everyone
33. One place that you go to over and over? supermarket
34. One person, who messages me regularly? daughter
35. My favorite place to eat? home

That was a fun! If you’d like to join in, snatch the questions and link back to me AND

Please share and go go go!