Hickory Hill Donkey Farm - Home Page (continued)
hickoryhilldonkeyfarm@windstream.net - email

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Congratulations - Hickory Hills Miss America

     

     

 

2012 Class Winner - Yearling Jennets at Halter

2012 Junior Grand Champion

2012 Year-end Awards presented January 5, 2013 by GCDMA
 

 

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2012 Spring/Fall Foals

Again, I must apologize that I haven't published info/pictures of the babies!  With Christmas and New Year's just behind us, both of us down with the flu for a couple of weeks and now misting rain for the last eight days, I'm way behind in my schedule, but still working hard to get pictures/info of our younger animals and updating some others!  We have three young geldings, one experienced halter gelding, a couple of nice 'less than mature' jennys and an adorable nursery to choose from!  By the end of the month, we will have all of our spring/summer foals weaned; if you might be interested in any one of the three little girls that were born this fall, they should be ready in May!  We are thankful for the rain, but we darn sure didn't need the flu!  :)


Zig N. Along
DOB:  02/08/12

Five  O'Clock

DOB:  03/02/12

Marcie
DOB:  03/14/12

Loretta
DOB:  03/18/12


Silver Belle
DOB:  03/28/12
 

Pink Floyd
DOB:  05/16/12

Downtown Brown
DOB:  05/19/12

Robertson
DOB:  05/22/12


Sadie
DOB:  06/02/12


Ramblin' Rose
DOB:  06/17/12


Coco Kiss
DOB:  07/16/12
11 Spring Foals
5 boys
6 girls

 


Ta' Molly
DOB:  10/11/12

Zelda Rose
DOB:  11/12/12

Mimosa
DOB:  11/15/12

3 Fall Foals
3 girls

 


 

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2013 Halter Futurity
sponsored by Hickory Hill Donkey Farm

 

 

 

It is with a great deal of pleasure and a since of pride that we can say 'our hard work is paying off,' but now we are in a Catch 22 and need help in getting our donkeys in the show ring and showcasing our breeding program!  That's where the idea of a futurity comes in ................ and anyone who purchases one of our donkeys and shows it during 2013 will be eligible to participate!

 

You pick the shows that you enter!  Can be local to your area or out-of-state!  For every first place you win with your Hickory Hill donkey, we will send you a check for $100; for every second place, we will send $50 and for every third place, you will receive $25!  You can enter as many shows as you like during the 2013 show season; the more the better, but that's totally up to you!  The one stipulation is that there must be at least one other donkey in your class; you must compete to win!  At the end of the year, we will also present a special award to the donkey that has won the most money!

 

We think it will be fun, and it's another opportunity for us to advertise our breeding program, plus we will pay you to show 'our' donkey!  We look forward to having a great time in the show ring next year!

 

Although this is a halter/conformation endeavor, we will also have a special end-of-the-year award for the donkey that shows in halter and also competes in performance classes. 

 

We have some excellent prospects in mind, and would be open to discuss our thoughts on those, but the choice is totally up to you!  Harv will be selecting his donkeys to show next year on January 15; before that time, anything we have is available for purchase, but after January 15, the donkeys that Harv chooses to start will have to be off the market until after the 2013 show season closes!

 

 

Again, I must apologize that I'm behind in getting updated/current pictures and information published!  Just about the time we both got over the flu, Harv hurt his back, and as most of you know, he is the main wheel of this operation!  He's still hobbling around, but the donkeys are glad to see him every morning at feeding time. 

I'm still working on pictures of our younger animals and updating some others!  We have three young geldings, one experienced halter gelding, a couple of nice 'less than mature' jennys and an adorable nursery to choose from!  By the end of the year,
we will have all of our spring/summer foals weaned; if you might be interested in any one of the three little girls
that were born this fall, they should be ready in May!

I promise the day after Christmas I'll be out in the pasture taking pictures and updating our website!  I know I've said this before, but Harv said it best .................. 'it's tough to be old and sick in Flynn, Texas!'  :)

 

 

 

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This is little Ta' Molly; she is one month old today (DOB: 10/11/12) and had stood by for several minutes watching the yearlings that are still sharing the nursery pasture nibble on a partial bale of hay that Harv left in the bed of his cart!  When they all walked away and there was no one around (except me and my camera), Ta' Molly thought she would try to get some hay too!  I watched her approach the cart with great determination, but try as she might, there was no way she was going to be able to reach the scraps of hay that the others left.  When I snapped this picture, she was laying her chin on the fender of the cart; she did, however, find some nibbles of hay because as she turned away, she had a few twigs sticking out of her mouth!

 

 

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'Big Tex' - Texas State Fair Icon - Goes Up in Flames

 

Big Tex on FIRE!

Everything really is bigger in Texas ... even when our State Fair icon goes up in flames! 

Big Tex, the famous 52 foot State Fair of Texas mascot, was destroyed in an electrical fire at Fair Park in Dallas this morning.  Wearing size 70 boots, his tremendous 75 gallon hat and 50 pound belt buckle,  Big Tex had been greeting fair goers since 1952 and
was celebrating his 60th birthday.  While the State Fair officially ends Sunday,
the Dallas Mayor promised Big Tex will be back by saying ............................
"Howdy folks!  Welcome to the great State Fair of Texas!"

 

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The past two weeks have been busy!  Our last 2012 foal to be sired by Sunset Acres Russian Czar was born 10/11/12, and she is outstanding!  Introducing Hickory Hills Hot Ta Molly!  Czar moved to our farm early last spring, we bred him to five jennys, and he produced five quality babies for us ........... two little boys and three little girls!  Two are black, one spotted, one gray and little Molly who is dark red!  Molly's dam is KiTerra's Punkin Pie who was also dam to Hickory Hills Rusty Nail, an outstanding young sorrel jack that we showed in 2008 and 2009 before he moved on to Tennessee to become herdsire for Castlewood Farm.  Rusty did extremely well in the show arena, and although she is brand new, we feel good that Molly will be able to start where her big brother left off. 

 

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And the weekend of October 6 & 7, we were in Dallas showing at the Texas State Fair Donkey and Mule Show, and to our surprise, the temperatures dropped 50 degrees Friday night!  Temps on Friday were mid-90s, and after the front blew through, we woke up to mid-40 temps ............ brrrrrrrrr!  Thank goodness we always have blankets for the donkeys, but Harv and I were scrambling to find enough sweatshirts for ourselves!  Halter competition wasn't until Sunday, so Saturday we spent talking and laughing and eating carnival junk food with Shirley Ashford and Kim Stegall (Lil Foot Mini Ranch), two great donkey friends whom we hadn't seen in almost two years!  What a great time we had remembering the good old days when we were all starting out with our donkey dreams and how much fun we had visiting at the shows.  Shirley and Kim have stopped showing, but it's still fun to remember!

 

On Sunday morning, we got over to the show barn and started getting our donkeys ready; large animal classes were to begin at 8:30 a.m. and the minis were to follow when they finished up; the weather was still cold and windy. I really felt bad for the little guys when I had to take off their blankets and sprayed them down with show sheen!  Unfortunately, the show was running late, and they were getting cold, so we put their blankets back on; there is a limit to just how much is too much, and it was definitely too cold to stand around with no blanket for two hours! 

 

Finally it was show time, and 'Pa and Ma's' little donkeys worked hard to do their very best; well, actually the two girls - Mary and Miss America - sorta danced their way to the judge's heart ......... they just couldn't be still for even a minute.  It was cold; the show was running late, plus they were auctioning off show cattle at the opposite end of the arena!  Harv really worked hard for their ribbons!  :)

 

DJ (Dow Jones) always draws attention with his bright red color accented with lots of white, and he loves to work the crowd and this day would prove to be no different!  Zydeco is as steady as a rock, never complains and always gives us 110%! 

 

We brought home two blue ribbons, two red, one NMDA Reserve Champion Jack award and the NMDA Junior Champion title, but this show would be bitter sweet as Mary will be leaving for her new home in Tennessee, Zydeco is retiring to become a full time herdsire for us, and Miss America, who was named Junior Champion,  just isn't big enough to compete next year as a two year old!  That only leaves DJ as a hold over to start next show season, and he will still have to show as a junior at NMDA shows.  We are thinking about not breeding Sweet Caroline and getting her (she's three years old) back in the show ring as our mature animal along with a couple of weanlings yet to be determined.  Looks like we are going to be busy, but Harv loves halter competition, so I'm sure that he will 'git her done!'

 


T9C Mary


Miss America


Dow Jones

 

Zydeco retires from the show ring - 2012 Texas State Fair
 

What a pleasure showing this little jack has been!  He has a big lovable heart, but when it's time to show,
he puts on his game face!  Cold weather, rainy weather or extremely hot/humid conditions - Zydeco never flinches!
We hauled 'Z' to 16 shows in three years; in addition to the championship titles listed below, he earned 11 blue
(first place) ribbons and five red (second place) ribbons; never placing below second in his age group!  We are going to
miss him next year, but we plan to keep him busy romancing red jennys and producing outstanding babies for us!

 

My goal is to show three of his babies in a Get of Sire class before Harv and I retire from the show ring!

 

2010 Ozark Empire Champion Jack - Ozark Empire Donkey Show, Springfield, MO
     2010 Reserve Model Donkey - Ozark Empire Donkey Show, Springfield, MO

     2010 Grand Champion Miniature Donkey - Oklahoma State Fair, Oklahoma City, OK
     2011 Grand Champion Jack - San Antonio Livestock Show, San Antonio, TX
     2011 Best of Breed - San Antonio Livestock Show, San Antonio, TX
     2011 Model Miniature Donkey - SDMS Kick Up Your Hooves Show, Lufkin, TX
     2011 Reserve Champion Miniature Donkey - Ft Smith Donkey and Mule Show, Ft Smith, AR
     2011 Model Miniature Donkey - SDMS Fall Fantastic Donkey and Mule Show, Belton TX
     2012 Reserve Champion Miniature Jack - Texas Shoot Out, Bryan/College Station, TX
     2012 NMDA Reserve Champion Miniature Jack - The Great Celebration Donkey and Mule Show, Shelbyville, TN

 

Thanks 'Z' for your hard work and all of the good times!

 

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It's almost October, and we have one more show left in the 2012 season, and then we will get down to business weaning our spring babies and breeding a few jennys for some nice foals next fall.  Our temperatures are still mid-to-high 90s with hardly a breeze; I guess the cooler temps we had two weeks ago were just Mother Nature teasing us!  Texas was fortunate enough to get some nice spring showers, and most of the hay balers got at two cuttings, so we will be able to feed local hay this winter, and that will be a blessing on our donkey budget.  While prices haven't changes much ($8.50/bale and $85/roll), at least we aren't having to pay transportation costs to ship it from out of state, and it's good quality coastal hay!  Last year was a real challenge, but we live by the rule that we are never given more than we can handle, so we whined a couple of days and then put on our boots and got busy doing what we had to do to feed our animals! 

 

Here's baby pictures of the little guys/gals that we will be weaning in October; I'll post updated pictures as we post them on the For Sale page.  We will keep them in the weanling pasture two weeks to make sure that each of them has 'passed the test' of weaning and is independent of mom!  Some babies wean quicker than others, but we've found if we wean several together, they all do better!

 


Zig N. Along
'Big Al'
DOB:  02/08/12
 

Five O'Clock Shadow
'Give Me Five'
DOB: 03/02/12

March Madness
'Marcie'
DOB:  03/14/12
 

Loretta
'Retta'
DOB: 03/18/12


Silver Belle
'Belle'
DOB: 03/28/12

 

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There's no shortcut to success .................... it's been lots of fun, but also a lot of hard work, and after 12 years, we are changing directions with our donkeys and have decided to 'go red!'  We are currently in the process of remodeling our breeding program, and along with change comes the difficult decision to sell some of our favorite gray, brown, black and spotted animals that have been with us for some time.  These aren't culls; they are carefully chosen breeding quality donkeys who have produced fantastic foals for us in previous years.  We are updating our website and will be publishing changes daily. 


We are looking for good donkey homes; these aren't guard donkeys or cow donkeys or brush eaters ......  they are outstanding breeding jacks and brood jennys. In addition to our breeding age animals, we have a few foals, yearlings and two year olds that we will also be offering along with several show prospects. If you have a particular color/bloodline/height that interests you, please don't hesitate to let us know! 

 

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Shelbyville Show News:  OMG!  1820 miles later, we are back home in Texas and the Shelbyville show is just another good memory!  Although it poured down rain the morning of the show, and our little donks had to stand in the rain because there wasn't enough room to tie out under the roof of the arena, they put on their game face and did another great job for us!  Four donkeys = three blues, one red, Reserve Champion Jack and Junior Grand Champion ...................... the redheads were clicking, but the donkey that we took that quickly became the 'love magnet' was T9C Mary!  She's seven months old, weaned a month ago, and Shelbyville was her first trip away from home.  She has always been a bold/brave little one, and she stood proud and tall (well, as tall as her little 27" can stand) for the judge in the Two and Under ACOSA Halter Class and also represented us well in the Color Class (donkeys any size, any age and any sex)!  Mary is the first Ziggy baby that we've ever tried to show because of their small size, but she did a good job, wasn't the least bit timid or shy and represented Hickory Hill and her daddy well! 

In addition to the competition at Shelbyville, we also enjoy visiting with old friends and meeting new ones. Jerry and Betty Sircy from TN met us at the show to pick up their new red jack, Hickory Hills Heat Wave; he's going to have a wonderful new home with the Sircys.  We also met donkey owners in person that that we only knew by their farm name (or better yet, their donkey's name); Dayle (Half Ass Acres) and her 'best bud' Deana Wilson, along with Maria Randall all moved up from the back forty and stalled in our barn!  The Millers from Kansas made their first trip to show in Shelbyville and promise to come back again next year!  Across the way from our barn was Sandy Murphy and Rosie (Hickory Hills Texas Red Rose); it was Sandy's first time to show at Shelbyville, but Rosie showed her what to do and together they won the two year old jenny halter class!  That's a repeat for Rosie as she brought home the blue ribbon in the yearling jenny halter class last year!


Miss America trots for the judge!

Miss America and Harv waiting
for their number to be called!

Dow Jones saying  .......... hey listen,
I've been standing in the rain; and I'm in no mood to put my ears up!
 

When Harv speaks DJ listens!
       

And here's Zydeco! 
The love of my life (well one of them, anyway)! 

He stood in the rain about 1 1/2 hours before his class, and he showed dripping wet and brown
instead of bright sorrel!

Always a trooper ........ always willing to work!
     

Here's Texas Red Rose ...........
Congratulations to Rosie
and her new owner, Sandy!

Here's a good friend of ours; he's coming to the rescue of T9C Mary
with a dry towel!

And a hug!

Louie is wanting to know 'where the heck we have been all day while he was back at the RV park!
       

And here's little Mary, legs square, but ears back,
ready for  ACOSA judging!

Is this the guy you said was coming to look at me?
 

Let me get another look at him!
     
   
Miss America walking/trotting for the judge! T9C Mary making her show ring debut!

 
And here's DJ and Harv waiting to see whose number is called for NMDA Junior Champion!

Because of the rain and clouds, my pictures are a bit dark, but I'm going to go ahead and share them with you!  You can also go to:  https://www.jonmccarthy.com/default.asp; click on the Donkey and Mule Show logo and that will take you to the show proofs on the photographer's website.  If you go to Thursday A.M. Junior Champion, the first two pictures are T9C Mary standing in the rain; we felt so badly, but what a brave little girl she was! 

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Bar 3S Mary's Chocolate Kiss
Marcie's daughter named this little girl; I think the name fits perfectly, and I know  Marcie is looking down from heaven with a big smile!

  Guess who had a big surprise for us when we got home from Shelbyville ............. yes, Mary Alice finally, and I mean finally had a beautiful black/brown jenny foal!  She is gorgeous; straight and strong!  This is the last foal to be born with the Bar 3S farm name prefix as my dear friend, Marcia Smalley, sadly lost her battle with melanoma cancer in March of this year!  

While we were away from the farm, our donkey sitter would text us the same message every morning about 7:00 a.m. - 'All is well; no baby!'  So you can imagine how surprised were we when we drove in the driveway Monday evening, and Mary Alice was laying down (head up looking around) and then in a second look, I saw this little black 'fluff' standing next to her head.  When she looked up and saw us, she stood up and the afterbirth dropped; we were about 30 - 45 minutes late; she just couldn't wait any longer!


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Welcome to our family!
Our first great grandbaby, and she's a little doll!
Kenley Marie - 6 pounds 15 ounces; 18 1/2 inches long

And ............... born on my birthday, July 7; the best gift ever!


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Hey guys ............ thank you so much for checking out our website; enjoy your visit, and please
let us know if you have questions or need additional information!  2012 has been a much better year
for Hickory Hill; we had a mild winter, we have hay in the barn, and we've even received
some measurable rainfall!  We are counting our blessings!

 

In addition to all of that good news, our spring 2012 babies are outstanding!  Czar's first four
babies were born this spring, and we are extremely pleased with their disposition, quality and color;
he really gave us a variety!  The first one born (Five O'Clock Shadow) is a beautiful black jack out
of a sorrel jenny; the second one is a delightful little gray-dun jenny (Silver Belle) out of a gray/white spotted jenny; the third one (Robertson - named after our vet) is a brown/white spotted boy out
of a dark brown and white jenny and the fourth born was an absolute surprise; she's that gorgeous blue-black with a white nose cap (we call her Raven); her mom is brown/white spotted! 
Needless to say, we are delighted with all four!

 

Ziggy also did a tremendous job for us in the breeding pasture!  He produced five of the cutest little spotted girls ever and two boys; one is spotted and the other is pink, yes pink, but he's all boy!  By the way, give it up to Ziggy (28 1/2") ............ all of his girlfriends weren't 30" in height.  In fact, one of the spotted jenny foals is out of Rozette, one of my favorite red jennys (35"); if it can be done, Ziggy will do the job!

 

It looks like 2012 is going to be a better year for us!

 

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Donkey Roping Must Be Stopped!
Van Horn, Texas
June 23 - 24, 2012

We  did  it . . . . . . . . . by working together to save these little creatures with long ears, the sheriff's office in Culbertson County, Texas, at 12:50 p.m. Mountain time today (June 19, 2012) confirmed the donkey roping event scheduled for June 23 was cancelled because of public input and the number of complaints received!   Many thanks to all who telephoned, emailed or said a prayer!

We will be working together to present our cause to the state officials in January 2013 when the State legislature is scheduled to begin session!  There are laws in place to protect 'equine' from this brutal treatment, but here in Texas, donkeys aren't considered equine, only horses!  We will set out to convince our lawmakers that they are wrong, and we can do it! 

Update:  We had another scare last week; there was a goat/donkey roping advertised in Robinson, Texas, and we only had three days to get the word out, but by the end of the second day, we had word that the event had been canceled, and someone in our group had a contact in the area and was able to confirm that yes, there would be no donkeys or goats roped that weekend! 

If you should ever hear of a scheduled event that includes donkey roping, please email us as soon as possible; our friends of the long ears group has a good track record! 
 

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Our last baby for spring 2012 finally (and I do mean finally) arrived on June 21; Slipper really kept
us guessing as she was three weeks late!  We can laugh about it now, but we've had her in the nursery
pasture for almost two months because she was sooooo round, and we were afraid that she would deliver early!  We were way off base; but the wait was well worth it as this baby is another 'home grown' foal as both her parents are out of our breeding program!  Dad (Ziggy) goes back to Red Alert and Connie, and mom (Slipper) is the daughter of Major Money Maker!  She's a little doll!

 

 

Introducing Hickory Hills Sadie

 

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Red Alert (My World) and Allie (758) have done it again!  This gorgeous little red girl was born on
Father's Day, and Harv was delighted!  I wanted to call her 'Pappa's Girl' but she had to be a 'Rose'
like all of Allie's other jenny foals (let's see, we have Prairie Rose, Gypsy Rose, Texas Red Rose
and now this little doll, Ramblin' Rose!  She is absolutely wonderful, and I'm sure that she will be following 
in the footsteps of six (two boys and four girls) 'siblings' who have made their mark in the show ring
and in breeding programs here in Texas, as well as out of state!

 

 

 

Welcome, Hickory Hills Ramblin' Rose

 

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       Training, Clipping and Bathing ........... OMG!  It must be show season!

Two shows in two weeks is tough on old folks and young donkeys, but we made it and had a great time at both shows!  Thank goodness, Shelbyville is a month away; we need a nap!


Texas Shoot Out
Bryan/College Station, Texas
June 8 - 10, 2012

This is the only Texas show that we have scheduled this year, and it continues to be a good one!

4th - Foals and Yearling Jennys at Halter - Hickory Hills Miss America - this little gal was unhappy from the time we put her in the trailer until she got back home!  We had to leave Pilgrim (her BFF) at home because he had a slight limp that had been going on for a couple of days; we knew that he couldn't show with the limp, and we decided that it wasn't in his best interest to be standing in a stall at the show, so we had to take a new stall mate for Miss America, and she wasn't having any part of that!  Let's just say that she begrudgingly walked and trotted, but she didn't even came close to standing still for the judge!  She's learning!  :)

As soon as we got home and she saw Pilgrim, she was a totally happy little donkey and trotted beautifully out to greet him, and I'm sure she told him all about the bad weekend she had!

1st - Two Year Old Jacks at Halter - Hickory Hills Dow Jones - because of his birthdate (July) DJ competes as a two year old in Texas and a yearling at NMDA shows; it doesn't bother him, but it drives me nuts!
1st - Three and Four Year Old Jacks - Small Pleasures Zydeco - this little guy has been a pleasure to show; he's always there and always does a good job for us!
1st - Five and Older Jacks at Halter - Country Music's Merle Haggard - he did it again; we are so proud of our 'old man!'  Merle was shown as a yearling, and retired from the show ring until we purchased him in 2008; we cleaned him up and put a little finish on him and off we went to the NMDA National Show that was held her in Texas.  He won his class and was named Reserve Champion Jack at Halter!  So when we found out that the Shoot Out was going to have a class for five and older jacks, who better to take with us ................ you guessed it, Merle! 
 

Miss America

 


Dow Jones

 


Zydeco

 


Merle

Grand Champion Miniature Jack at Halter
Hickory Hills Dow Jones

Reserve Champion Miniature Jack at Halter
Small Pleasures Zydeco
with me at the steering wheel; I was shocked out of my mind
 and about fell all over myself trying to thank the judge!  :)

He's such a good boy; he tries hard to make me look good!

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River Valley Mule and Donkey Show
Clarksville, Arkansas
May 25 - 27, 2012

This is one of our favorite out-of-state shows; it's a long drive, but we always have a great time!

2nd - NMDA Foals (jennys, jacks and geldings) at Halter - Hickory Hills Miss America - bless her heart; this little gal was on a fast track to make it by show time!  She was only weaned a month before the show, and then got her first haircut and learned to walk/trot on lead.  I don't know where she learned the 'bunny hop' that she did all the way to the judges, but when she got to the line-up, she did stand still for Harv!

1st - NMDA Yearling Jacks at Halter - Hickory Hills Dow Jones - what can I say; this little guy is such a toot at home, but when we get to the show arena, he takes care of business!
 

2nd - NMDA Two and Older Geldings at Halter - Hickory Hills Pilgrim's Pride - thanks big guy; I know we said that you could stay at home this year, but Miss America needed a stalling partner, and she fell in love with you!  Thanks for being a good sport!

1st - NMDA Two and Older Jacks at Halter - Small Pleasures Zydeco - I love this redhead!  He is so agreeable, so easy to show and always does a great job for us!  Of course, every now and then, he does whisper in our ear that he would much rather be back home romancing a jenny!

Grand Champion Miniature Donkey at Halter
Hickory Hills Dow Jones

Reserve Champion Miniature Donkey at Halter
Hickory Hills Texas Red Rose
shown by her new owner; now how's that for stepping out!

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New faces around the farm; aren't they cute?

 

 

Hickory Hills Raven
DOB:  05/30/12

Gorgeous; looks like a little Barbie Doll; very petite!
 

 

Hickory Hills Robertson
DOB:  05/22/12
So friendly; one of the first to leave mom and come visit with me on my bench; reminds me of a fuzzy toy!
 

Hickory Hills
Downtown Brown
DOB:  05/19/12

Looks just like his grandpa, Cyder's Jimmy Brown;
outstanding conformation!

 
 

Hickory Hills Pink Floyd
DOB:  05/16/12

Yes, he's really pink! 
What a great little herdsire he is going to be!

 

Hickory Hills Silver Belle
DOB:  03/28/12
Miss Congeniality!

 

Hickory Hills Loretta
DOB:  03/18/12

Never meets a stranger!
 

 

 

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On March 14, the morning of our dear friend Marcie Smalley's memorial service, we opened the blinds and the very first thing that we saw was this little sweetheart!  Is she special ........ you bet she is! 

   
     
Another great My World x 758 breeding; this cross just seems to work every time!

We named her March Madness, and her farm name will be Marcie!  Our heart told us it was the right
thing to do!  Marcie loved her little sorrels, and I know she would love this little one too!  I think it
was a sign from our dear friend that she has all of heaven's stalls cleaned and the barn arranged just
the way she likes it, and everything is going to be okay! 

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Sunday, March 11:  It is with a very sad heart that
I report the death of a good friend and one of miniature donkeys greatest supporters!  Marcie Smalley of Bar 3S Miniature Donkeys in  Burkburnett, Texas has been breeding these wonderful little creatures with long ears for many years and has greatly contributed to the success of the breed!  The next time you are out in the pasture, take a minute to give your donkeys
an extra big hug in honor of my wonderful friend; she enjoyed every moment in the pasture and truly loved the breed!
 

 

 

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Due to the drought conditions here in Texas, we are struggling to find good quality (and affordable) hay for our animals, and because we don't have any idea how much longer this stressful situation will continue, we have made an extremely difficult (and tearful) decision to reduce the size of our herd.  

 

In addition to champion show animals, we have an outstanding breeding herd that we've been putting together for ten years!  Due to our hay situation, we haven't been doing much breeding, but the few babies that we had last spring and fall were outstanding, and we had planned to keep more of them than usual to start in the show ring.  Unfortunately, we will now have to change our plans and offer those for sale also. 

 

The out-of-state hay suppliers are killing us with their prices!  Last year, hay grown here in Texas was selling for $50 - 75/roll and $5.50 - 7.00/bale; in today's world with the drought conditions, we are paying anywhere from $10.00 up per bale and $125 - 175/roll with no relief in sight! 

 

 

I will continue to work on our website to update current pictures and height measurements,
but if we had something in the show ring or something on our website that you might be interested in,

don't hesitate to get in touch and let us know! 

 

*************************

And then on a much happier note ................

 

Introducing Hickory Hills Five O'Clock Shadow

 

DOB:  03/02/12

Our first baby out of Sunset Acres Russian Czar, and we are delighted! 
Mom is 758 Peppermint, and we have always bred her to a sorrel jack,
but this time Harv slipped her in with Czar while I wasn't looking,
but now I have to say 'all is good!' 

 

*************************

 

Hickory Hills Zig N Along
('Little Al' around the farm)

 

DOB:  02/08/12
Birth Height:  18 1/2 - 19"
allowing for newborn footies
and baby wiggles
Sire:  Hickory Hills Zig N Bock
28 1/2" - gray/white spot
Dam:  Hickory Hills Sweet Pea
30" - gray/white spot

 

There were a few 'security issues' with the birth of a boy in the T9C nursery;
the little 'ladies' thought it was going to be all girls!  :)

 

   

On the left, is T9C Jill; she's the oldest of the three foals in the pasture, and she was staying right
in Harv's hip pocket the day Little Al was born.  In the middle photo, that's T9C Mary (spotted),
she's the 'middle child' and of course, little Jill, making sure that Harv doesn't give all of his attention
to the new kid!  But the picture on the right is my favorite; that's Pixie, whose foal is due later
in the spring, leaning on Harv's knees to get a belly scratch!

 

*************************

 


Watch out 2012 ............ here we come!

 

*************************

 

 

Finishing Off on a Good Note!

Gulf Coast Donkey and Mule Association, one of our Texas clubs, held their annual banquet and awards meeting on Saturday, January 7, and the Hickory Hill donkeys brought home lots of 'loot' and ribbons!

Hickory Hills Arabella
First - Jennet Foals at Halter
 

 

Hickory Hills Dow Jones
First - Jack Foals at Halter
 
 

Hickory Hills Texas Red Rosie
First - Yearling Jennys at Halter
 
 

Hickory Hills Pilgrim's Pride
First - Two Year Old Jacks at Halter
 
 

                            
                    

Small Pleasures Zydeco
Reserve Champion Jack
 
 

All of this while showing in only three of the five shows
sanctioned by this club in 2011!

As many of you remember, we dedicated this show season to Storm and Susie, the two little ones that we lost after we picked up bacterial pneumonia at the San Antonio Show in February, and I think our little donkeys worked very hard and did a fantastic job
despite our heavy hearts!

 
And if we are quiet and listen carefully, we can still hear
Storm and Susie braying every night!

 

 


*************************

Looking back .................

2011 started off with heartbreak, but ended much better than we could have ever dreamed!  As we look back over last year, we are thankful for our family and friends that have been by our sides supporting us on our adventures! 

In February, we took five donkeys to compete in one of our favorite donkey shows, the Livestock Show and Rodeo in San Antonio, Texas.  The show itself went extremely well; probably one of our best shows ever, but exactly one week after the show, we had four donkeys in ICU at our vet’s clinic with bacterial pneumonia.  We lost two, and two recovered completely and were able to finish out the show season in good health.   Our hearts were broken at the loss of Storm and Susie, and we thought about hanging it up and not showing any more.  We cancelled our entries in the Houston Livestock Show Donkey and Mule Classes the next month (March), but in April, one of the Texas clubs was host to the 2011 National Miniature Donkey Show, and we knew if we were ever going to get back in the show ring, we had to do it then.  It wasn’t easy, and reliving our story to so many who were truly concerned was difficult.  Unfortunately, I have to say, it was all a blur; our hearts were still hurting, and although our donkeys did very well, it just wasn’t any fun!  In May, we entered a smaller show here in our home state, and again the donkeys did well, but again Harv and I just went through the motions.   

Then in July, we made the decision to once again drive to Tennessee for the Great Celebration Donkey and Mule Show, and although it was a long hot drive, we had a great time!  We met lots of new donkeys and their owners and our donkeys worked hard and did a great job of bringing lots of blue ribbons back to Texas!  In September, we drove to Oklahoma for their State Fair Donkey and Mule Show, and for the third year in a row, Harv showed the Grand Champion Donkey!  I like to say, he had the best little ass at the show!  In October, we attended the donkey and mule show in Ft Smith, Arkansas, and brought back both the Grand Champion award and the Reserve Champion award!  OMG!  It’s fun again!  This show was probably the one that opened our eyes and let us know that although we certainly hadn’t forgotten little Storm and Susie, we were working hard and doing well in their honor! 

We had five spring babies – two boys and three girls, and five fall babies – all girls!  We are delighted with all ten!   Harv hasn’t said anything about retirement in several months; in fact, he is already talking about who he is going to get ready to show next year! 

In addition to the donkeys, we’ve been busy with the grandgirls!  All three are growing up and busy with their ‘stuff’ so we don’t see them as much as when they were little, but we still need a regular ‘fix’ even if it means driving to Houston (2 ˝ hours away) just to have dinner with them and driving back to the farm!    

Our summer temperatures here in our little part of Texas were horrific!  We had triple digits for almost 90 days straight (I believe it was actually 87 days) and no rain.  We are still dry, dry, dry!  As a result of the drought and heat, Labor Day weekend, we experienced several severe grass fires that wiped out hundreds of acres along with many homes in addition to many barns and vehicles.  Fortunately, no lives were lost!  At one time, the sheriff came by to tell us the fire was two miles away from our place, and we were under volunteer evacuation; thankfully, it never became mandatory, and we were able to stay with our animals.  We smelled smoke for days after, but the firemen were able to contain the many flash fires throughout the following week.  We have a volunteer fire department on a very limited budget, but in times of crisis, our little community pulls together.  At one point, the fireman sent out a message that they needed chap stick and bottled water, and in no time at all, they had more of both than they could ever use, and it all came from the hearts of the people who owned the homes that they were protecting!    

Finding hay this year is a challenge, and paying for it is a bigger challenge!  Last year, we paid $50/roll for good quality coastal hay; this year when we can find it, we are paying $125 – 150/roll, and it’s not nearly the quality that we are use to feeding, but there’s no hay in Texas. 

On a personal note, both of us are very thankful for our good health!   I’m still taking Crestor because I couldn’t resist eating those good McDonald’s fries when we were younger, and Harv still has to be careful with his back that he injured many years ago, but all and all, we are still kicking and feeling good!  Good health is a blessing!

*************************

Just in time for Christmas ............ our newest angel!

T9C Mary
DOB:  12/11/11
Birth Height:  19 - 19 1/2"
(including footies and wiggles)

Sire:  Hickory Hills Zig N. Bock
28 1/2" - gray/white spotted
Grand Sire:  My World Red Alert
31 1/2" - dark sorrel
Dam:  Hauenstein's Debutante
30" - brown/gray/white spotted

*************************

 

Z Y D E C O ................ Champion in the show ring and now making his mark in the breeding pasture! 
We waited 13 months for this little gal, and she was well worth the wait!  Introducing Hickory Hills Zeena, and yes,  ...... she's Zydeco's first offspring, and she is outstanding!  He did a fantastic job! 
Of course, we knew he would, plus he had the help of 758's Little Debbie, a beautiful red jenny
that we hand-picked for his first 'real' girlfriend! 

 


Hickory Hills Zeena
DOB:  11/27/11


*************************
 

November 18, 2011 ........ Announcing  Hickory Hills Sarabella!  Here's our second breeding
of LN Stuart Little B and Short and Sweet Annabelle, and it's a carbon copy of the first .............
can't ever go wrong with a healthy black jenny foal! 

 

This little gal has some big shoes to fill because her big sister, Arabella, and her new owner
just won the yearling jenny class at the Texas Championship Show the first weekend of November. 
The weekend before that, they placed second at the SDMS Fall Show in Belton, Texas! 
Congratulations to Arabella and Sandy on their first two shows together;
we were so proud of you, and best of luck next year!

 


Hickory Hills Sarabella
DOB:  11/18/11

Hickory Hills Sarabella
Sire:  LN Stuart Little B
Dam:  Short and Sweet Annabelle

Hickory Hills Arabella
DOB:  06/10/10
Sire:  LN Stuart Little B
Dam:  Short and Sweet Annabelle


*************************

Guess who showed up just in time for Halloween ...............

She's a tiny little toot, but she has a big personality!

 


Running to meet Harv at the gate!


 

T9C Jill
DOB:  10/30/11
Birth Height:  19" with her 'footies'

Sire:  Hickory Hills Zig N. Bock
28 1/2" - gray/white spotted
Dam:  Hauenstein's Tinker
29 3/4" - gray-dun

* full sibling to Pearl, Zig Zag and Ruthie

 

 

Jill's mom is a little bit shy, but she's had four babies for us, and they have all been 'pocket pals' and baby Jill is no exception; she is already running for hugs!  Mom is always standing close by watching!
 



A little bonding time!


 



Some scratches behind the ears!
 


Please don't go; one more scratch!
 

Knee high to a tree stump!


*************************

 

                        

          

        Zydeco
         1st Three and Older Jacks at Halter
          Grand Champion Miniature Donkey

               Tristan
       1st Two Year Old Jacks at Halter
      Reserve Champion Miniature Donkey


Way to go!  They continue to work hard in the show ring to please the judge!  We showed in Belton, Texas last weekend, October 29 - 30, 2011, and for Zydeco and Rosie, the two that have been traveling with us since the first show back in February, this is their seventh show, and three of those were out of state!  We've had so much fun meeting new donkeys and making new friendships!
 

We took five donkeys to the Belton Show; three of ours - Rosie, Dow Jones and Zydeco; Arabella and her new owner made their debut, and Harv showed Tristan, a two year old jack, for a breeder in France! 
We brought home three blue first-place ribbons, two reds for second place, and both the Reserve Champion and Grand Champion awards!  Plus a very good donkey friend of ours made us a big bag
of snickerdoodle cookies (always a favorite) .............. it was a fun day for everyone even though as I look at my pictures, no one has their ears up!

 

Texas Red Rose
1st Yearling Jennys at Halter
Arabella
2nd Yearling Jennys at Halter
Dow Jones
2nd Yearling Jacks at Halter
Tristan
1st Two Year Old Jacks
Reserve Champion
Miniature Donkey
Zydeco
1st Three and Older Jacks
at Halter
Grand Champion Miniature Donkey


*************************

WOW!

Our crew of little donks just continue to amaze me!  They work so hard to do their best, and they always seem to make our day!  We hauled them 7 1/2 hours to show in Arkansas last weekend (Friday, 10/07 - Sunday, 10/09/11), and they never missed a step!  They brought home three blue ribbons, the Reserve Grand Champion award and the award for Grand Champion Miniature Donkey!  We couldn't be more pleased with our breeding program; it's taken us 10 years to 'get it right' but we are where we want to be now, and it feels so good!  :)
First Place Yearling Jacks at Halter
Grand Champion Miniature Donkey
Dow Jones - 'D.J.'
First Place Two and Over Jacks at Halter
Reserve Grand Champion Miniature Donkey
Zydeco - 'Z Man'
First Place Yearling Jennys at Halter
Texas Red Rose - 'Rosie'

 

Ft Smith Donkey and Mule Show - October 7 - 9, 2011 - The party's in Ft Smith!  If you missed it this year, start planning to join us in 2012!  This was the first year that miniatures have been invited, and they really know how to put on a fun show!  We started off with halter on Friday morning, followed by driving, snigging and a 'catch your ass' class, and ended the day with dinner together at Red Lobster!  Saturday's classes were mostly for the large animals, so that left us miniature folks plenty of time to get to know each other and trade donkey stories!  There were breeders/exhibitors from Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Texas, and we were all stalled together in the designated 'mini barn;' that made for lots of fun and good natured kidding!  Sunday, we had to pack up and head back to Texas, but most stayed through the afternoon to see the costume class!  I hear that class stole the show!

 

*************************

 

It's a 3-peat .......

and  we  are  smiling  long  ear  to  long  ear!
 

Oklahoma State Fair Miniature Donkey Show - September 24 - 25, 2011

We spent the weekend in Oklahoma City!  We always enjoy this show and always make it a point to include it in our 'gasoline' budget!  The parking personnel and show staff are always so courteous and helpful (Marc even gives green stars for nice/neat entries) and the arena is well cared for, but our favorite part of the show still has to be the stall facilities!  They are outstanding; always clean and dry, and each stall door is made of heavy mesh wire over a metal frame that allows the miniatures to actually see out rather than just stand in a 'box!' 

 

Oklahoma first invited miniature donkeys to participate three years ago, and we have shown with them all three years; Harv keeps saying that he's retiring, but we just keep having fun, and it just keeps getting better each time!  This year was no different ..........cool weather (70/80s) and lots of fun; renewing old friendships and making new ones, plus we brought back the Grand Champion Miniature Donkey award for the third time!  Three different donkeys judged under three different judges; all shown by the same 'good-looking' handler!  Gotta love that guy!  :)

 


2011 Champion
Hickory Hills Dow Jones


 



2010 Champion
Small Pleasures Zydeco
 


2009 Champion
Hickory Hills Rusty Nail
 


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Here she comes ............... Miss America!
 

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On the morning of Wednesday, September 21, we open the blinds to find this fantastic little gal looking through the fence at us!  Apparently, Tanzy waited for us to turn out the lights and go to bed the night before, and then she laid down and delivered this little one as a surprise to us .............. and let me tell you, we were surprised for sure as momma showed no signs that she was even close to foaling, but thankfully, as soon as the foal attempted to nurse, the milk bag filled and down came the nipples;
the bottles were ready, and the foal was looking for breakfast!

 

Miss America got her name from her daddy!  His name is Itsy Bitsy Burro Co.Stars & Stripes, and he is now standing as herdsire with the Stadler's in Nebraska!  'Stripes' is 30 1/2" in height and has a deep dark red haircoat; he is a solid little jack with a great laid-back disposition, and he 'trademarks' his babies with good bone structure and wonderful wide/straight legs; Miss America has it all!

 

*************************

 

 

Update:  Sunday, September 18, 2011 - We heard lots of thunder in the distance this morning, but we only got 15 drops (yes, we could count them) of rain; never the less, we are thankful for each and every drop that hits the ground! 

 

Here's a picture I took yesterday of Zydeco in the front yard;
we are soooooo dry that he almost blends in!  Notice those few green weeds across the road; you can't kill them with a hammer, much less this summer's triple digit temps!  They are the only thing left green in Texas, and no one even likes them!

 

 

*************************

 

Update - Friday, September 9, 2011 - All voluntary and mandatory evacuation orders have been lifted; the fire that burned more than 4,500 acres in Leon County since Sunday has been declared 100% contained.  There are still 'hot spots' that will have to be monitored, but overall, things are looking pretty good!  Command centers are in the process of being shut down, but sheriff's deputies and fire fighters will be working for several more days to watch for flare-ups and to make sure that the man-made fire breaks hold up.  We have been advised to 'stay ready' and be alert to our surroundings.

 

The total number of structures lost to the fire is reported to be 31 homes, 57 barns or out buildings and two churches.  There are many farms and ranches located in our area, but thankfully, most of the animals that belong to these families have been accounted for, and the authorities have found very few dead wildlife in the area.  Unfortunately, it has been confirmed that one herd of cattle fell victim to the fire!

 

We want to thank all who called and emailed to check on us; we cherish your friendships!  Please keep those families who lost their homes in your thoughts and prayers! 

 

OMG!  We just had the hottest summer ever - 83 days of triple digit temperatures - plus one of the worst droughts ever recorded, and now we are in the midst of fires spreading out of control across thousands of acres of pasture land!  We were told to prepare to evacuate on Sunday evening; at that time, the sheriff estimated the fire was about two miles away!  That's when my heart started racing, and I realized what a real catastrophe this could be!, Thankfully, the evacuation never became mandatory, and we were able to stay in our home with animals safely all around! 

 

Winds were blowing at 45 mph on Sunday, and blew down a tree that had been weakened due to our dreadful drought; when the tree fell, it hit an electrical transformer and broke some lines that sparked; from that moment on, it was a nightmare!  Unfortunately, some families in our area lost their homes and belongings, and we continue to keep them in our thoughts and prayers as well as the fire fighters who have been working around the clock to protect our lives and homes!  The good news is that although 30+ homes were lost in addition to more than 50 other structures, there were no deaths and only one serious injury!

 

To tell the truth, I never even thought about taking pictures; we were too busy hooking up trailers and rolling out hoses to wet down our land as much as possible, but our neighbor did manage to take some good photos, and I'll share them with you below!  After fighting this thing coming straight for us from the north on Sunday and Monday, the fire fighters were beginning to get it under control; we couldn't believe it when another fire started behind (to the south) us - last picture! 

 


 

 

 

 

 

*************************

 

The Great Celebration Donkey and Mule Show - Shelbyville, TN - July 7 - 9, 2011

 

Let me just start out by saying ................... it was fantastic!  We were able to visit with old friends, and we met some great new donkey folks; the weather wasn't too hot (well, remember we were use to triple digit temps); we actually saw some rain and our little donkeys worked hard and did a good job!  They brought home three first place ribbons, two seconds and a Reserve Junior Champion!  Yes, we were smiling from ear-to-ear .............. the three blues were from our breeding program .......... the little guys!

 

There were seven 'junior' classes, and our five animals were in the first seven classes!  Didn't give much time for Harv to catch his breath, but he seems to run on adrenalin ............ maybe it's stress!

 

First up was DJ (Hickory Hills Dow Jones), there were five  in his class of foals, and he placed first!  Then came Rosie (Hickory Hills Texas Red Rose), and she also placed first in her class of 13 outstanding yearling jennys, and then Pilgrim (Hickory Hills Pilgrim's Pride) won the yearling gelding class! 

 

I now call Pilgrim, our 'go-to-man' as he started out this year winning the two year old jack class at San Antonio, and then we gelded him in April, and he won the two year old gelding class and Reserve Champion Gelding at the Lufkin Show in May, and then at Shelbyville, he won the yearling gelding class!  Besides having excellent  conformation, he is a gorgeous blue-black color with light points!  And 'why' did we geld him you ask?  Well, we have his daddy in our breeding program, and when we had to put down Storm last March with toxic colitis, we didn't have a gelding in our show string!  It was a very difficult decision, but we decided to geld Pilgrim!  He has proven that we made the right decision; he's an outstanding animal!

 

Our two 'older' (both two year olds) were soooooo busy 'in love' that they could have cared less about a show!  Zydeco became a mature jack almost overnight; he just couldn't keep his eyes off of She Zahm, who apparently came into season the day we left home!  Yikes!  She was PMS'ng and he was looking for love!  :)  Harv 'mustered up,' and they both were still able to take a second in their classes! 

 

All five of our donkeys qualified for the Junior Champion/Reserve Championship Class, and little Dow Jones, although not yet a year old and showing as a foal, was named Reserve Junior Champion!  Many thanks to Katrina Fleener who showed him for us; good job Katrina and DJ!  I also want to thank Phil Howard of Brayberry Farm who showed She Zahm and little Olivia Lowe who showed Pilgrim in the championship class!

 

Congratulations to all of the exhibitors!  There are so many quality miniature donkeys in the show ring today, and it speaks highly of everyone's efforts to continually develop and improve our breeding programs!

 

*************************

Updates - August 21, 2011 - finally, just short of using a can opener, I was able to get our Shelbyville pictures off of our camera!  Unfortunately, most of them are too dark to use, but I'll try to pick out a few of the better ones to share!
 


Harv and DJ waiting
for Class #1 - NMDA Foals at Halter

Checking teeth/bite!


Rosie getting a last minute
heart-to-heart talk!
 


Rosie trying to stand still while the judge backs off for that critical look!

Good job, Rosie!
 

Harv and Pilgrim talking it over
before the judge gets to them!

Pilgrim lining up to receive his blue ribbon!

Sweet Olivia showing Pilgrim
in the Jr. Champion/Reserve Halter Class!

Zydeco is looking around for She Zahm; this boy was crazy in love this weekend!


Harv's giving Zydeco some last minute tips; something like "forget the girls and get your mind on this show ring!"

Oh no, Zydeco; that's the judge;
ears up and smile!

 

*************************

Shelbyville always has a color halter class; there's no class fee, and donkeys are placed according to color!  To some (actually I think most) color means spotted, but since we didn't have a spot to show this year, I entered Pilgrim and our donkey friend, Dana from TN, entered a black gelding that she has!  Neither of the boys placed over the spots, but we had a great time!

 

 
Here's Dana and Howington

 


And here's Pilgrim and I! 
Hey, they said color, so I wore
my colors ........ red/white & blue!
 

 

*************************

 

We said good-bye to She Zahm after the Shelbyville Show; her owners, Steve and Lynda Hazlewood from Georgia, met us at the show to take her home!  We enjoyed the almost two years that she lived with us; She Zahm is a sweetheart, easy to work with and always ready to show!  Many thanks to Steve and Lynda for asking us to show her; it was a pleasure!  She was a big part of our show ring success!

 

*************************

 

Just before we left for the Shelbyville show, we had to tell Major Money Maker good-bye!  He left for his new home in Colorado with Sandy Leger w/ River Ridge Donkey Farm!  She called us to let us know he had arrived safely, and it made me feel so good to hear the excitement in her voice!  We knew then that we had put Major in a fantastic new donkey home, and Sandy has already promised him that he will have lots of girls to call his own!  Thanks so much, Sandy, for falling in love with the little guy; he produced fantastic babies for us, and he will always have a special place in our hearts!

 

 
Getting pretty for the girls
waiting for him in Colorado!

 

He will always be a Texan!
 

 

*************************
 

 

Our last baby for Spring 2011 was born on June 13, and Major Money Maker certainly left  his stamp at Hickory Hill!  As many of you know, we stressed over making our decision to get out of spots and concentrate on reds and blacks, and one of the reasons that decision was so difficult was because it meant selling one of my favorite jacks ever, CSF Major Money Maker!  I love that boy; he has been an absolute pleasure to own, and he has produced some delightful babies for us!  Each and every one has been stocky, well built and with dad's delightful laid-back disposition!  When we stopped to really think about it, we sold every one of his babies as weanlings because they were just so darn fuzzy and cute, not to mention in-your-pocket friendly!  Some were sold as future herdsires, some as future brood jennys,
and some for special family pets; there were all truly irresistible! 
 

*************************

And then there were five ..........

So here's the nursery line-up - two little boys and three little girls - all special!

 

 
Bluecoat Gin
 March 26, 2011

 Sire: Brayers Are Us Tangueray Gin
 Dam: CM Isabelle
 



General Ledger
 (a.k.a. 'Spud')
  May 13, 2011

 Sire: CSF Major Money Maker
 Dam: Bumpus Farms Suzie's Babe
 

 

 

 



Barbara Jean
 April 23, 2011

 Sire:Brayers Are Us Tangueray Gin
 Dam:  Thomas Farms Itsy Bitsey



Bernadette
May 10, 2011

 Sire: LN Stuart Little B
 Dam: Country Place Rockette


Curtain Call
(a.k.a. 'CC')
 June 13, 2011

 Sire: CSF Major Money Maker
 Dam: PMF Daisy

 

 

*************************

Here's Zydeco walking/trotting for the judge at this weekend's show; we think he is an outstanding!  He's feeling good and back in show condition; he's a survivor!  Zydeco was one of our four donkeys that came down with the bacterial pneumonia after the San Antonio Show and spent a week in ICU at our vet's clinic; fortunately, he and Rosie survived, but sadly we did lose both
Runaround Susie and Stormy Knight!  We have dedicated the remainder of this year's show season to two precious little souls,
and we are all pulling together to do our very, very best in their honor!

 
We love this video; we think Zydeco is an outstanding little jack, and he has been so much fun to show, but the best parts about the video are the comments by someone in the audience that can be heard in the background; we had no idea until after we got home and downloaded the pictures from our camera; what a great surprise!  That darn orange cone had been a 'snake in the grass' for the younger animals, but Zydeco didn't blink!
 

Take a quick minute to enjoy the video and the totally unsolicited comments from the audience;
but I do have to tell you we agree completely .............. he is that 'perfect little man!'  :)

 

SDMS Kick Up Your Hooves Donkey and Mule Show
Lufkin, Texas - May 14 & 15, 2011

 

   

Zydeco
 

1st Three and Older Jacks at Halter
Model Miniature Donkey
 
   
Pilgrim

 

 

 

 


1st Two Year Old Geldings at Halter
Reserve Model Miniature Donkey Gelding
    *  Pilgrim was doing a great job for us showing as a jack,
        but with the death of Storm, we needed a good show
        gelding, and because we already have Pilgrim's sire in
        our breeding program, we made the difficult decision
        to geld Pilgrim just three weeks ago!  Way to go Pilgrim!
 
   
Dow Jones

2nd Yearling Jacks at Halter
 
    Texas Red Rosie
 

 

 


1st Yearling Jennets at Halter
    *  Rosie was our other bacterial pneumonia survivor; she
        has made a remarkable recovery and took up right where
        she left off in the show ring!  Thanks Rosie for all of
        your hard work!
 
 
    She Zahm

 

 

 

 

2nd Three and Older Jennets at Halter
    *  She Zahm doesn't belong to us; her owners are Steve
        and Lynda Hazlewood, and we are pleased that they
        asked us to show her for them!  She's an  excellent jenny
        and has done a super job in the show ring!  We are really
        going to miss her when she goes back home to Georgia!
 
 

 

 

 

The show started at 8:00 a.m. plus the temperature had dropped into the 40s and all of the donkeys were looking for a little TLC!  Here's our dear friend, Cheryl, with Dow Jones and Pilgrim! 

Cheryl and her family are just getting into miniature donkeys,
but she has certainly learned that one of the the quickest ways
to their hearts is a good butt scratch!  :)

 

 

*************************

 

And then there were four ............

Here's #4; born Friday morning
before we left for the donkey and mule show!


Hickory Hills General Ledger

This little boy is one of CSF Major Money Maker's last foals for us; Major is moving to Colorado
to romance the jennys at River Ridge Farm.  He's as happy as any little donkey can be,
but I have to say, he's taking a big piece of my heart with him!

 

We had just called our donkey sitter the day before to say that we didn't think Babe would have her foal before we got back home from the donkey show, but just in case, the belly button dip was on the shelf in the feed room!  Boy!  Did we feel crazy when we had to call her back Friday morning and tell her that we had taken care of the little guy's belly button and given both him and mom their shots!
 

*************************

Hickory Hills Bernadette - 2011 foal #3
 

                                                 

             It's a Girl!
                  5:15 p.m. Tuesday, May 10
                  Sire: LN Stuart Little B
                    29 1/2" - black
                  Dam: Country Place Rockette
                  33 1/2" - dark brown

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


  And here she is at five days old!
      WOW!  She's delightful!
    Conformation, plus personality!

 

*************************
Updating some of the weanling/yearlings! 
They are working hard to learn to walk/trot and 'hopefully' stand still for the judge!
 




Dow  Jones
DOB: 07/16/10
 




Elvira
DOB: 09/02/10



Texas Red Rosie
DOB: 02/10/10
 


Arabella
DOB: 06/10/10

 

 

 Introducing our second 2011 foal ............

Hickory Hills Barbara Jean was born the Saturday before Easter, hence the farm name, Bunny!
She is also a Tangueray Gin baby, and mom is Thomas Farms Itsy Bitsey, a gray/white spot who has given us five foals; three spotted boys (No Fake Jake, Easy Money and Hendricks Gin) and two gray girls (this little doll, Barbara Jean, and Silver Slipper who we sold as a weanling and purchased back as a three year old; she is now part of our brood jenny herd!  Barbara Jean has wonderful conformation and
a fantastic look-at-me attitude; we think she is a real show ring prospect!

   


Day One - April 23, 2011

Day One - April 23, 2011
about 30 minutes old!

Day Four

Introducing our first baby of 2011

Hickory Hills Bluecoat Gin, our first baby of 2011 ................. and he is a little chunk!
Actually, he wasn't really a surprise; that's exactly what we expected!  This is the fourth time we have
bred CM Isabelle (dark brown) to Brayers Are Us Tangueray Gin (registered black/brown), and all four times, they have produced an outstanding black foal (Junipero Gin, Norma Jean, Wyonna and Bluecoat)! 
We just can't go wrong with this cross!


Day One - March 26, 2011
 



Day Two


 
April 6, 2011 - Eleven Days Old

 

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Thank you so much .................. for your thoughts, prayers and support as we continue to recover from the
loss of our two beloved donkeys!   February 21, exactly one week after 
after we got back from the San Antonio Livestock Show and Rodeo (our first show of the 2011 season, and one of our best shows ever), we had four donkeys in ICU at our vet's with bacterial pneumonia; two survived, one died from the disease, and we had to put one down due to toxic colitis as a result of the medication that had to be given to try and save their lives.  The one we put down had 100% clean lungs, but his intestines were totally compromised.  

We've shown five years without even a runny nose, but the heartbreak of bacterial pneumonia for which there is no 'prevention' is unbearable!   Those three weeks were perhaps the longest, most stressful three weeks that we have ever experienced during the 10 years that we've had our donkeys!

Although we love doing the four Texas livestock shows and introducing miniature donkeys to so many people who have never met them, we absolutely can not put our donkeys or ourselves through this again!  Unfortunately, we weren't the only ones whose animals suffered; we heard there were 200 'confirmed' cases of respiratory distress and seven deaths!  Our thoughts and prayers go out to the other owners who had sick animals, especially to those who also had animals die!  It's a terrible, heartbreaking experience!

 

*************************

WOW!
 

There's not another word that comes to mind to describe our results in the miniature donkey halter classes at the 2011 San Antonio Livestock Show in mid-February!  The show was a hard one for us as we had snow on the ground in our little part of Texas the two weeks before the show, and getting our donkeys ready was difficult!  Thankfully, San Antonio is far enough south, they didn't have snow, but it was cold and the wind was blowing in gusts!  Again, there was no warm water at the wash racks, so we didn't bathe our animals, but we did brush them as best we could and spray them with show sheen before we put their pj's on! 

 

The show started at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, but halter classes didn't get in the arena until almost 9:00 p.m. (8:46 p.m. to be exact); I only know this because Rosie was the first to show and the first picture that I took of her walking to the judge is stamped 8:46 p.m.  .......... yikes!  That was a long wait, but I do have to say that our donkeys were more patient than Harv; he was ready to show, and the longer it took for our classes to come around, the more he dreamed about hot dogs, popcorn and pretzels from the food court! 

 

Hickory Hills Texas Red Rose was our yearling jenny entry; this was her first time away from home, and I have to admit ................ I was holding my breath that she would walk and trot for the judge!  And that she did perfectly; we were sooooo proud when the judge gave her the blue ribbon for first place!  And then, OMG, when she was later named Junior Champion!  We were delighted! 

 

Next was Hickory Hills Stormy Knight who we took out of retirement because we needed a gelding, and all of our young boys aren't 'there' yet!  Hopefully, we will be able to have our gelding party mid-March, and begin working with some of the younger kids, but for now Storm is alright with all of the fuss going on!  He too walked and trotted perfectly for the judge, and walked away with second place in the Three and Older Gelding Class, and then later was named Reserve Champion Gelding!  I'm telling you that I didn't think this night could get any better, but it did! 

 

Hickory Hills Pilgrims Pride was next, and although he had only celebrated his first birthday this year on Thanksgiving Day, by Texas rules, in the show ring, he has to show as a two year old.  Now to tell you the truth, he isn't even interested in the girls yet, and still thinks his buddy Bart is the best ever (I know, I know - it won't be long until he is looking at the girls, but not now, so I was worried that he would look like a baby showing up against the more mature animals in the class)!  But he had watched Rosie and Storm walk and trot and knew if he didn't follow in their footsteps, he would be the one hanging at the thinking tree when we got back home!  He walked and trotted perfectly, and even stood still (he has matured a bit) and brought home first place in the Two Year Old Jack Class!  By this time, I was hyper, and I do mean hyper as in I couldn't catch my breath! 

 

Next up was Zydeco, and then we were through, but there was still plenty of excitement to come!  Zydeco shows as a three year old by Texas rules, and 'usually' he is all business and doesn't miss a beat, but it was late and he had been waiting for a long time!  But true to form, he was 'right on' that night too!  He took first in the Three and Over Jack Class, was named Grand Champion Jack and then brought home the Best of Breed award!  Harv was walking on a cloud, and I was still trying hard to breathe!  It was definitely a great night for 'pa and ma' and the little donkeys from Hickory Hill! 

 

 


Small Pleasures Zydeco
DOB:  09/18/08
Sire:  Cyder's Jimmy Brown
Dam:  Cyder's Flanna Bella


Hickory Hills Texas Red Rose
DOB:  02/10/10
Sire:  My World Red Alert B-95
Dam:  758's Allie
 
   

 

Brayers Are Us She Zahm from Georgia is still a major part of our show string; she loves to show and is always at the top of her game!  At San Antonio, she came in second in a full class of outstanding Three and Over Jennets at Halter!  Congratulations to her owners, Steve and Lynda Hazlewood, and thank you for letting your little redhead stay with us again this year!

 


She Zahm working hard for Harv!

Waiting for the results!

Second Place - Brayers Are Us She Zahm

 

Many thanks to all who offered congratulations!  And a special thanks to Donnie Kellett, who when I couldn't find my back number or my donkey and put my hat on backwards, came to my rescue and showed Pilgrim in the Championship Jack Class ........... against Harv and Zydeco!  The funny thing, Harv had no idea that Donnie and Pilgrim were even in the class until it was over, and Donnie, still with Pilgrim in tow, came over and offered his congratulations and a handshake!  Harv had to laugh; he said he kept wondering where Donnie got that little black jack .............. never realizing that he was competing against his own donkey!

 


It definitely was a night to remember!

 

 

2010 is over and it's almost time to start another show season!  It seems like just yesterday we were driving back from our last show and making a list of things that we now had time to do around the farm! 
Let me be the first to tell you .............. we still have that list!

 

Before we start another year of showing, I wanted to take just a moment to thank all of our donkey friends that cheered us on in 2010!  We had another great year; our little donkeys worked hard and brought home a lot of pretty ribbons and awards, and we met some new donkeys and some new donkey owners!  Some of the best people in the world own miniature donkeys, and it is our pleasure to be a member of your group!

 

*************************

 

                            

Ending on a high note!

When we are asked about showing, if we like to show and 'why' we show, we always encourage folks to try it;
but by all means make sure to have fun; you have to enjoy it because it is a lot of hard work! 
As I once heard Archie Manning (First Father of Football - dad to Peyton and Eli) say he told his boys "learn how to win
and learn how to lose; compete and make friends; that's what it is all about!"  I totally agree, but I still think it has to be FUN! 

*************************

September 25 & 26, 2010 - Oklahoma State Fair - Ma & Pa's little donkeys worked hard, stood tall and did a fantastic job for us; we smiled all the way home!  We took five little donkeys, and everyone brought back a ribbon - one third place and four first place ribbons, plus one Grand Champion/Best of Breed and one High Point Non-Driving Miniature Donkey!  It was a fantastic way to end our 2010 show season! 

Little Pilgrim is still a wiggle worm; he placed first in his Yearling Jacks at Halter Class, but poor Harv really had to work hard.  He does a good job of walking and trotting for the judge, but he hasn't yet mastered the standing still part.  We had three in the Champion/Reserve Class, so, we asked Chuck Chudomelka from Missouri if he would show Pilgrim, and he agreed, but when he came out of the ring, he said 'this little guy really wiggles!' I guess standing still will come with maturity ................ we hope!  :)

Sweet Caroline came into season the day before we left for the show, and she was a bit 'sassy' in the arena, but she flirted with every jack we met on our way back to the barn!  Luckily, she did bring home a third place ribbon!  Some days she is Sweet Caroline, and some days, she's just Caroline!

She Zahm is always ready to work, and she did a great job in Oklahoma; she won the Two and Older Jennet Halter Class, and then after the points were tallied, she was named High Point Non-Driving Miniature Donkey!

Zydeco was the 'go-to' man!  He and Harv stole the audience's attention, and thankfully the judge like them too!  We told him before his class if he did a good job, we would find a nice little redhead to room with him when we got back home!  He listened ........... he placed first in his Two and Older Jack Halter Class and then was named Grand Champion/Best of Breed!  Harv keeps saying that he's getting too old to show, but when the judge gave Zydeco the top award, Harv was walking on clouds!  They are definitely a team!

The biggest surprise of all was Barton Gin (better known around the farm as Bart the Fart)!  When Mac left for his new home after the show in Missouri in August, we had to scramble to get another spot ready to show!  We had planned to start showing him next year, but we went ahead and got him ready for Oklahoma!  He did a fantastic job ........... there were eight jacks/jennys/geldings (any age) in his class; I'm sure that he was one of the the youngest in age and probably most certainly the one with the least experience, so we were holding our breath and hoping that he just made it through the class without a melt down!  When they announced first place and called out Bart's number, we were all surprised and delighted at the same time!  What a fantastic day for the little spotted guy!

This is the second year for the OK State Fair to invite miniature donkeys to participate, and both years we've had a great time!  Everyone is so friendly and helpful, the barn facilities are outstanding and the barbeque sandwiches that the club provides for lunch on Saturday are the best!  Thanks to the Missouri Donkey Club and especially Missi Webb and Kim Winton for all of their hard work in organizing this show!

Many thanks to all of our friends who took time out of your busy schedules to call or email
 with your good wishes and congratulations; we appreciate your friendship so much! 
That's what makes this 'donkey game' so much fun .........................

* I apologize for the poor quality of our pictures; my camera was on the blink; it's five years old, and I have it in my pocket 24/7;
I think it's just been in too much donkey dust!  It finally stop working completely on Sunday, and I had to take pictures
with my cell phone and then send them to myself at my computer!  What a big fat mess!


Sweet Caroline - first up!
Yearling and Under Jennets at Halter


Pilgrims Pride
Yearling and Under Jacks at Halter
 


She Zahm
Two and Over Jennets at Halter


Sweet Caroline
Where are all the boys?


Pilgrims Pride
But I thought you like my dancing!

She Zahm
Always ready and willing; on the money!


Bart
Color Class - any age; any sex
Waiting to make his debut!



Bart
So far away with only a cell phone
to take pictures!


Zydeco
 Wake me up when it's time for my class!

Zydeco
Two and Older jacks at Halter
 


Zydeco
Show your numbers!
 

Here's my first attempt at YouTube .............. Zydeco picking up the blue!  Look at that prissy little trot (and I'm talking about Zydeco's, not Harv's)!  :)  It was a long day, the Two and Older Jacks at Halter was the last halter class and poor Harv was almost too pooped to pop, but he did manage to hobble out of the ring on a cloud when the announcer said 'Harvey Jordan from Flynn, Texas!' 


                                                   

 

*************************

Monday, August 2, 2010 - It was hot, hot, hot in Springfield, but we still had a great time showing at the Ozark Empire Fair!  The temperature was 106, and I kid you not, I think you could have fried an egg on the sidewalks, but that didn't stop us from having a good time!  Our little donkey guys and girls did another good job for us, and we brought home some top honors!  Zydeco won the Two and Older Jack Class, was named Grand Champion Jack and was Reserve Model Donkey!  She Zahm won the Two and Older Jennet Class and was Reserve Champion Jennet; little Pilgrim did a good job in the Yearling Jack Class and placed second and last, but certainly not least ................ Mac won the Color Class! 

 

Emily, our oldest granddaughter, made the trip with us, and ended up making her debut in the show ring!  She showed a jenny for some donkey friends of ours, and then showed Pilgrim in the Grand/Reserve Champion Jack Class. 

 

Mac didn't come back to Texas with us; his new owners, Hazlewood Minis, met us at the show and took him back to Alabama!  I'm going to miss that little guy; his loud spots and fancy little trot can really turn heads!  Good luck to Mac and Steve and Lynda; I know he will make some beautiful spotted babies for you!

 

Congratulations to Cedar Valley Farm (Steve and Cheryl Klund) and their granddaughters!  Hickory Hills Red Hot Chili Pepper was named Grand Champion Gelding at the Springfield show, and we were as excited as they were to see the old boy back in the show ring!  He looked fantastic and seems to be enjoying his new home and new friends.  His best girlfriend is Duchess; it seems that when Chili arrived in Missouri to live with Steve and Cheryl, Duchess had just been weaned and needed a best friend and some TLC ......... those of you who remember Chili know that he was just the one to step in and comfort Duchess! 

 

Sweet Caroline and Harv
waiting on the judge!


 

Harv trying to keep Zydeco awake!
 


Good Job, Mac!

Mac and She Zahm
smiling for the camera!

She Zahm standing pretty!

 

Pilgrim is a tired little boy!

 

 


Emily and Papaw!
 

Emily working to stand Pilgrim
up for the judge!
 

Zydeco - Grand Champion Jack


 


This was Mac's last show for us!  Here's Harv telling Mac 'good-by & good luck'
before he left for his new home!
 

Chili and his best girl!

            

*************************

 

Sunday, July 18, 2010 - Yikes!  It was almost as hot in Tennessee last week as it is here in Texas!  Thank goodness, our stalls at the Great Celebration are shaded by a huge oak tree!  We had a lot of visitors during our stay, but I wonder how many really wanted to visit with us and how many just wanted to sit under our shade tree!  :) 

 

Shelbyville Update:  We had a great time, and our little donkeys once worked hard to do a good job for the judge!  She Zahm won the yearling jenny class and then went on to be named Junior Grand Champion; Dana Rathburn brought Rusty Nail back to defend his 2009 title, and he and Harv won the two year old jack class and grabbed Reserve Champion Jack honors this year!  Way to go She Zahm and Rusty! 

 

Zydeco came home with a second in the yearling jacks at halter class, and Mac took home third in the two year old ACOSA jacks at halter class.  Stuart brought home another halter ribbon, but I think his biggest award was knowing that this was his last show, and he will get to stay home and entertain jennys. 

 

This was Little Second Hand Rose's first time away from home, and as she bravely tip-toed towards the judge, the photographer took her picture, and when the camera flash went off, Rosie jumped sky high, and never had more than two feet on the ground the rest of the class.  She brought home a fourth place ribbon, but the judge never was able to see how simply perfect she really is because she was prancing and dancing the whole time she was in the arena!  Poor Harv, his day started out busy, busy, but he has patience, and he and Rosie were both smiling when they left the arena ................. I don't know who was more glad to see the class end, Harv or Rosie!

 

Mac - What a fun little guy to show!


She Zahm - Square up and look pretty;
here comes the judge!

Stuart - Can you tell that he doesn't really want to be here?

Second Hand Rose - Just trying to hide her face in Harv's jacket so she doesn't
have to look!
 

They all worked hard!

Zydeco - with Harv's finger on the controls!

Show your teeth - Rusty!

Rusty - Standing for the judge!

Rusty and Harv - what a great time they had showing together again; thanks Dana for bringing your boy back to Shelbyville to defend his 'crown!'

 

And for those of you that always ask  - 'Why don't you show?'

Zydeco; notice the ears?  He is looking Harv in the eye with his ears up and alert! 
In the second picture, I had to show him in the Champion/Reserve Class (Harv had She Zahm);
ears back and eyes looking for his daddy; he played me like a fiddle!

 

                   

       

  

*************************

Show Update:  We are busy getting ready for our trip to Shelbyville, TN to show in their Great Celebration Donkey and Mule Show on July 9, 2010.  We will be taking five; Stuart, Mac, Zydeco, She Zahm and little Second Hand Rose.

 

Rosie will be making her debut in the NMDA foal class and has been working hard to learn how to stand still; she has mastered walking/trotting, but standing still has been a challenge!  :)

 

 

 

Texas Shoot Out Results (June 12, 2010):  I apologize for not getting our results at the TSO here in Bryan/College Station published sooner, but having only three weeks between the Shoot Out and Shelbyville wasn't long enough to get rested up and re-group.  As Harv says ............... 'we are getting older, and the donkeys we are showing are getting younger!'

 

Our little donkeys worked hard and did a fantastic job for us at the Shoot Out; we took nine donkeys and brought home 12 ribbons .................... way to go!  Thanks so much to Beth Burgess and Steve Wilhelm who helped us show when we had more than one animal in a class, and kudos to Sheri Strauss who came down from Kansas to pick up Texas Tea and Sammy; she was our 'official stall mucker!'  Thanks guys for your friendship and your hard work in making this show fun!

 

Yearling Jennets at Halter:   First - Hickory Hills Sweet Caroline
    Fifth - Hickory Hills Shawnee Princess
Yearling Jacks at Halter:   Second - Hickory Hills Sweet Texas Tea
    Fourth - Pilgrim's Pride
Two Year Old Jennets at Halter:   Fifth - Brayers Are Us She Zahm
Two Year Old Jacks at Halter:   First - Small Pleasures' Zydeco
    Fourth - Hickory Hills McCormick Gin
    Sixth - SRM Yosemite Sam
Five and Older Jacks at Halter:   Second - LN Stuart Little B
Produce of Dam:    Grand Champion - CF Hannibelle
  represented by McCormick Gin & Pilgrims Pride
Spotted Donkey Class: 
       (jacks/jennys/geldings) 
  Second:  Hickory Hills Shawnee Princess
  Third:  Hickory Hills McCormick Gin
   

 

Grand Champion

Produce of Dam
CF Hannibele

 

** from left to right - Hickory Hills Pilgrim's Pride with Steve Wilhelm
and Hickory Hills McCormick Gin with Harv;

I'm sorry, but we didn't get the name of the young presenter, but isn't he a cute one!

 

       
       Good job, Shawnee!
                                 
    
    Shawnee Princess and Steve
  hurrying to get their ribbon!

   
         Sweet Caroline and Harv picking up the 'blue!'

  
   Harv's working hard to keep Zydeco's ears up!
 

  
    And I think he's begging She Zahm to stand pretty!
    
  This little gal was born in South Texas, moved to Georgia,
   and came back to Texas this year to get some experience
             in the show ring, and she doing a great job!


Fun!  Fun!  Fun!
                                                

         
          
         
Texas Tea and Beth talking eye to eye!

 

 

*************************


Stars and Stripes with his new family!
Have you ever seen a happier little donkey?


Goodbye and Good Luck to a Fantastic Little Red Jack

We took Stripes with us to Oklahoma, and his new family met us at the State Fair!  What a wonderful new home for this little guy who was basically wrapped around the strings of my heart!  I couldn't watch him load up and leave (he and I had already said our goodbyes and shared donkey hugs), but the first time I walked back over to the stalling area,
I have to say, I got a huge lump in my throat (and truthfully, tears in my eyes)!  I loved the little guy and he did a great job for us; I can't
wait for our 'flag' babies next year!

Thank you so much to Dave and Sally Stadler of Nebraska
and their delightful kiddos for falling in love with Stars and Stripes!
In addition to her miniature donkeys, Sally helps Dave during harvest season, takes care of the triplets (two boys and a girl) and does commercial embroidery out of her home!  How busy is that?

 


*************************
 

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving
to family & friends!
 


*************************

 

Thanks for a fantastic 2009!
 

 

The memories are great, and we smiled all the way!  Many thanks to our donkeys and to Steve Wilhelm, Beth Burgess and Kim Stegall who helped us show them when we didn't have enough hands, to the new owners who let us keep their donkeys to show and to all of our friends who encouraged us along the way! 
Thanks so much!

 

 

San Antonio Rodeo and Livestock Show - February, 2009

Raspberry - First - Yearling Jennets at Halter

Gypsy - Second - Two Year Old Jennets at Halter

Chili - Second Three and Older Geldings at Halter

Rusty - First - Two Year Old Jacks at Halter

Raspberry - Jr. Champion Miniature Donkey

Gypsy - Reserve Champion Miniature Jennet

Chili - Reserve Champion Miniature Gelding

Chili - Non-Driving High-Point Miniature Donkey Champion

Red Alert - First - Get of Sire (Raspberry, Gypsy and Rusty)

 

 

Shelbyville - July, 2009

Rusty - First - NMDA Yearling Jacks at Halter

Raspberry - Second - NMDA Yearling Jennets at Halter

Chili - Second - NMDA Geldings to Halter, Three and Over

Mac - Third - ACOSA Two and Younger Jacks at Halter

Rusty - Reserve NMDA Jr. Champion
Chili - Reserve NMDA Champion Gelding

 

 

Oklahoma State Fair - September, 2009
Rusty - First - Yearling Miniature Donkeys

Gypsy - First - Two and Older Miniature Jennets

Chili - Second - Two and Older Geldings

Mac - Second - Color Class - any age, any sex

Rusty - Grand Champion/Best of Breed


 

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Only in Texas can there be a winter of sunshine one day, rain the next
and then snow on the third day!

 




 

It was pretty, but two days was plenty!
 

*************************

Our first 2010 donkey show was last weekend (February 15 & 16) at the San Antonio Livestock Show and Rodeo, and we took 'newbies!' We really had to work hard to make it through the day, but in the end, they all did their job and we brought home some ribbons! 

 

As many of you know, our four 'redheads' (Rusty, Gypsy, Ras and Chili) that brought us so much show ring success last year have all gone to their new homes, and we are starting over this year with mostly foals/yearlings!,  It's going to be a challenge and lots of hard work, but we look forward to a fun-filled year!  Oh my goodness ........... if only this new bunch would walk and trot!  :)

 

 


Sweet Caroline


Mac


Stuart

 

A little 'before' and 'after' ........

Stuart will be six years old in April, and this was the first time that he 'cleaned up and went to town!' 
I'm not too sure that he like it, but he did look handsome!


 
                                                      'Curls and all!'           'Roughed out w/fuzzy legs!'


San Antonio Results - Hickory Hills Sweet Caroline - second in the yearling jenny class
                      Hickory Hills McCormick Gin - second in the two year old jack class
                      LN Stuart Little - third in the 'old man' jack class - Stu will be six years old in  
                            April and has never been in the show ring, and although he is really too short,
                            we brought him along just for fun!  He stood on his tip-toes, but that just
                            wasn't tall enough for this tough Texas competition! 

 

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We had a great Christmas visiting with family and friends!  Thanks to all for the many beautiful Christmas cards and good wishes for a wonderful holiday season! 

 

 

We were in Houston for Christmas and didn't get any of the white 'stuff' on our lawns, but parts of Texas had a 'white' Christmas; other parts just had misting rain and cold temperatures down in the low 30s!  Here's a picture of our oldest granddaughter making a snow angel; Emily is in her first year of college, but just couldn't resist lying down in the snow and spreading her wings for a picture!  She really is an angel! :)


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Christmas week got off to a rough start ............ we lost our beloved 25-year old Texas Longhorn steer, Bubba on Wednesday.  We noticed last year that our winters were getting harder and harder on him; the dampness and lower temperatures were just getting to be hard on his body even though we provided a shelter, meal, water and hay all winter long.  On Tuesday, he was laying down in the pasture and didn't make an attempt to get up when he saw us, so we took him feed and water, and  crossed our fingers!   We checked on him several times during the day and decided that if he wasn't up by morning, we would ask our vet to put him down so that he wouldn't suffer, but when we went back to check on him early Wednesday, he had slipped away to Longhorn heaven!  Although our hearts are broken, and we miss him terribly, we are thankful that when his time came, he went quickly and peacefully.  It's always so hard to lose a dear friend!

 

 

 

 

 

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We were expecting three babies before the end of the year, and Jazzy, Tango and Callie Jo all made their deadline and delivered three fantastic foals ...... two beautiful little girls, and a tiny, munchkin little boy!

 



Angel Wings
DOB:  12/09/09
'outstanding little jenny'
 

758's Tango
Color:  dark brown
Height:  34"
Sire:   LN Star Spangled Banner
          33" - dark red
Dam: 758's Chocolate Rose
          33 1/2" - dark brown


Bred to:  LN Stuart Little B
Color:  black
Height:  29 1/2"
Sire:    LUA Maxx's Little Buckaroo
           30 3/8" - black
Dam:  LN Black Lace
           30 1/2" - black w/cross
 

We purchased Tango earlier this year; this is the first time that
she has been bred to Stuart Little.
 

 

 

 


Nicholas
DOB:  12/11/09
'cute as a bug'


Short Assets Jazzybelle

Color:  dark brown* NLP
Height:  31"
Sire:   Ozark Jazzy Jamm
          31 1/2" - dark brown
Dam:  Flight of Fancy Victoria
          30" - dark brown


Bred to:  LN Stuart Little B
Color:  black
Height:  29 1/2"
Sire:    LUA Maxx's Little Buckaroo
           30 3/8" - black
Dam:  LN Black Lace
           30 1/2" - black w/cross


This is the first time that Jazzy has been bred to Stuart; twice before she was bred to Green Acres Smokey Star and produced Hickory Hills Lexie Lanier and Hickory Hills Holy Smoke.

 

 



Christmas Eve
DOB:  12/24/09
'thank you, Santa'


Cryer Creek's Callie Jo
Color:  dark brown/gray-dun
Height:  33 3/4"
Sire:   Perkins' Live Oak Edwin
          30" - dark gray-dun
Dam:  Perkins Live Oak Star
           33" - brown


Bred to:  Brayers Are Us Tangueray Gin
Color:  black/brown
Height:  31"
Sire:   PMF Lit Bit O'Bandito
          31 1/2" - dark brown
Dam:  LN Charnala
           33" - black/brown

This is the fourth time that Callie Jo has been bred to Tangueray Gin, and those breedings resulted in three very nice foals. 

We showed Shirley Temple and Margarita as yearlings/two year olds, and Boomer (Bombay Gin) is a well-built little gelding!
 

 

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Friday morning after Thanksgiving, we woke up to find this little guy standing
out in the nursery pasture with his mom!   He is outstanding!
Please welcome Hickory Hills Pilgrim's Pride! 
 His mom is Hannabelle, and previously she produced two beautiful black jenny foals, and in 2008, a fantastic black and white jack foal that we are showing in the ACOSA halter classes .  I had my fingers crossed for another 'Mac'
but even though Pilgrim came in plain clothes, he is super!  As a good donkey friend of our says; 'he is black, black!' 

 

*************************

 

 


A 'Kinkade' moment in Flynn, Texas

This picture was taken mid-morning on the Saturday   after Thanksgiving!  Shelby was visiting us, and she decided that there might be donkeys at the end of the rainbow!  Harv and I were hoping that there was a big truck load of hay!  Yes, we are still on the hunt for our second load of hay; it's just very hard to find in our area of Texas!

 

 

And exactly a week later, we woke up to a thick coat of frost and temperatures in the 20s!  Now I know that doesn't sound cold to those of you who live 'up north' but to those of us who live in Texas, that's pretty darn cold!

 

 

 

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Finally, after almost ten years of having miniature donkeys, we had our first baby out of two Hickory Hill bred donkeys!  Mom is Hickory Hills Silver Slipper; she is out of CSF Major Money Maker and Thomas Farms Itsy Bitsey.  Dad is Hickory Hills Zig N. Bock who is out of My World Red Alert and TRR's Contessa! 

Welcome, 'Zig N and Slip N,' a delightful little bundle of fuzz!  At birth, he measured 20" in height with his newborn 'footies' on and  never meets a stranger! 

Cute, cute, cute!

 

 

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Catching up! ............... we've had our ups, and we've had our downs; good times and bad!

 

On a sad note, we lost Wyonna, in a tragic accident mid-August; she laid down one night to take a nap leaning against a roll of hay, and we can only guess that jennys on the other side of the roll started pushing and rolled the hay on top of her!  As you can imagine, it just about broke our hearts; we were sad for a very long time and still miss her very much! 

 

Unfortunately, that wasn't the end of our bad luck!  About two weeks after losing Wyonna, our little bottle baby, Faith, was running and playing with the other babies in the nursery, and dislocated her hip!  She either stepped in a hole, rain into another baby in the nursery, or 'something!'  She under went major hip surgery (our vets are miracle workers), and is recovering; it will be a long rehab, but we are hopeful that she will have a normal life ahead.  Then the week after Faith's accident, we had stray dogs get in our pastures and hurt two of our young donkeys.  The first night, they attacked Homer, Blossom's four-day old foal.  They must have thrown him around like a rag dog, and then went for the kill!  They came very close to puncturing his jugular vein, but the little rascal has bounced back and is all about life and fun!  We were afraid that his mom might reject him because our vet had to give him a 'poodle cut' to be able to take care of his injuries, but Blossom was a real trooper!  She looked at him funny, smelled him a time or two, and then invited him to have dinner!  Harv and I breathed a sigh of relief; we had already been down that road with Faith; it's hard work, especially the older we get!

 

Two nights after Homer was injured, the dogs came back and attacked Zig Zag, a tiny yearling jack!  He lives in the yearling gelding pasture with seven of his peers, and apparently, they were able to isolate him from his friends as he is the only spot and the smallest in the group!  Fortunately, Zig, too, is recovering and has maintained his wonderful, laid-back disposition ............ even when we had to give him a penicillin shot every day for a week!

 

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On the good side ............... For those of you who have kept our need for rain in your prayers, we send you a big 'Thank You!'  We started getting sprinkles the end of August, and by the first week of September, we had 'real' rain!  Our donkeys are happy, our pastures are growing and we are thankful!

 

We got a truckload of hay mid-September and only need one more to take us through the winter!  When I saw the truck coming down our road and up over the hill, I thought it was Santa Claus!  What a relief!

 

We have seven fall babies in the nursery (four girls and three boys), and they are all delightful!  Didn't you know I would say that!  Those of you who knew us six years ago will remember Cremesickle and the tragic loss of her foal; actually, Creme went into hard labor and the baby turned his head as he was entering the birth canal.  We had two feet showing, but no head; Harv and the vet worked intense to push the baby back far enough for Creme to deliver it, but unfortunately, they weren't able to help her, and she had to be sedated and the baby removed in pieces!  I can't tell you what a terribly sad day that was; it was heartbreaking!  Creme suffered some nerve damage in her hind legs as a result of the ordeal, and she still walks with a bit of an unusual gait, but otherwise she made a full recovery!  We gave her a year off to recover, and we've been trying to get her bred for four years.  She had one false pregnancy about three years ago, and I thought surely that was our last chance for a little Creme baby ............... how wrong was I!  We put Creme in Tangueray's pasture on June 23, 2008, and on Monday morning, October 5, 2009, Creme was standing in the pasture smiling with a brand new baby girl by her side! We call her our miracle baby, but we actually named her Dreamsickle in honor of her mom!

Another one of our new babies was born to a jenny that we 'rescued' last year!  When we bought Cates, she was skin and bones, nursing a seven month old foal and sharing a barn with a coming two year old jack!  Yikes!  We just couldn't believe our eyes; she was in bad shape, but very trusting when we went to her to offer her help.  It took several months of careful feeding and worming, but she made a turnaround, started putting on weight and the rest in history!  We bred her to Smoke and together they produced a beautiful little silver jenny foal; we named her Sylvia because of her color!

 

In addition to Cremesickle's baby, Tangueray has also given us two spotted foals; Maddie's baby is Barton Gin (aka-Bart), and Itsy's little boy is Hendricks Gin (aka-Henry).

 

We have two new red babies, both jennys, and both are gorgeous!  Prairie Rose's little one is Second Hand Rose (second generation), and Tanzy's baby is Crimson Mist (sire is Crimson Tide). 

 

And then there's Homer (Home Run)!  He's the little guy that was attacked by the dogs; his mom is Blossom and his dad is Sunset Acres Rowdy Yates!  He's a true pocket donkey!

 

We have several more due before the end of the year; next should be Shirley Temple, who is due to foal this month.  She is bred to LN Stuart Little, 29" black, and we are anxiously waiting, but the six little ones we have now are keeping us busy for the time being!

************************* 
Show News:
  We drove up to Oklahoma the end of September for their State Fair and our last show for 2009!  The facility was fantastic; they had just remodeled their barns, and put in new stalls with heavy mesh wire sliding doors.  The kids could see in, and the donkeys could see out; it was great!  We showed in the late afternoon to an enthusiastic crowd.  They cheered and clapped and seemed to really enjoy watching the minis; for some in the audience, this was their first time to see a miniature donkey. 

 

We took Rusty, Gypsy (Ras stayed at home this time as yearling jacks and jennys showed in the same class) and Chili to show on Saturday in the halter classes, and Mac to show on Sunday in the Colored Class!  And they lived up to their reputation; they worked hard and all brought home ribbons!  Rusty won the Yearling Class (jacks, jennys and geldings); Gypsy won the Two and Over Jenny Class, and Chili took second in the Two and Over Gelding Class!  Then they all went back in along with the winners of the other halter classes to be judged for Champion Miniature Donkey/Best of Breed, and Rusty won it!  We were delighted!

 

 

Mac is a real 'head turner' with his contrasting black and white spots, and Sunday was his turn to show!  He placed second in the Color Class behind a very nice mature spotted jack.  There were miniature donkeys of all ages and all colors; it was a fun class to watch!

 

 

 

 

 

As we end the 2008 show season, we would like to take this opportunity to thank the buyers/new owners of Rusty, Gypsy, Raspberry and Chili for letting us keep them through this show season!  It was a very successful year for 'pa and ma's' little donkeys, and we couldn't have done it without your cooperation and patience!  All four redheads will leave Hickory Hill at the end of the month to go to their new donkey homes!  We will miss them terribly; they have worked hard and done a fantastic job for us!

 

Thank you to Rusty's new owner, Dana Rathburn in Tennessee; Gypsy's new owner, Stephanie Dove/Brayers Are Us in Texas; Raspberry's new owners, John and Jan Stallone/Rancho di Campobello in Texas and Chili's new owners (who met and fell in love with him at the Oklahoma Show), Steve and Cheryl Klund/Cedar Valley Farm in Missouri.

 

And we couldn't have done it without My World Red Alert, sire of all four sorrels, and of course their dams:  Punkin Pie (Rusty), Allie (Gypsy), Little Debbie (Raspberry) and Peppermint (Chili)!  You produced four outstanding foals for us, and we loved showing them!  Rusty, Raspberry and Gypsy are ready for the breeding pasture, and Chili is on his way to cart training!  Good Luck, and we wish all of you much success!

************************* 

Showtime in Shelbyville - 2009

     

We had a great time in Shelbyville!  It was a long drive, but when we got there, the fun began!  Emily drove down to meet us and pick up Holy Smoke; she arrived in Tennessee Tuesday evening, and you would have thought we had known each other for years, but actually, that was the first time that we've met in person, although Emily purchased two young jennys from us about four years ago, and then this year, Holy Smoke caught her eye!  We talked for hours trading donkey stories and just getting to know each other; she is a terrific donkey person and we have already planned to meet again at Shelbyville next year!

 

Stall Area - Hanging Out to Dry After a Bath!



Rusty
As always; standing like a little soldier!

 


Mac
It's hard to see, but if you look carefully,
you will see that he dug a nice little hole to stand in!  This little one has to learn patience!

Ras
Looking over her shoulder to see what's going
on behind her; always in the social circle!

 

Wednesday was a day to hang around the stalls until late afternoon when we had to bathe Holy Smoke and the three redheads (Rusty, Ras and Chili); they were showing on Thursday morning in the NMDA show!  In addition to showing Holy Smoke, Emily brought two of her girls to show, and she was bathing them at the same time so we would be ready for the exhibitors' burger feast!  The folks at Shelbyville always do a good job of feeding the exhibitors!

 

Thursday morning, was show time for the NMDA classes!  Rusty started off with a first place in the yearling jack class of 19 exhibitors; he was later named Reserve Jr. Champion!  Way to go, Rusty!

Ras placed second in a class of 20 yearling jennys; she's a petite little thing, but a real competitor in the show ring!  Gypsy stayed at home this time, as she was still a yearling and didn't turn two years old until today, July 25 (Happy Birthday, Gypsy); that meant that Ras and Gypsy were both in the same class, and it just wasn't fair to our customer's for me to try to show one of them in a show as big as the Shelbyville show, so we flipped a coin!  And our last class was Chili's!  He had to come out of retirement once again, because Ras needed a roommate since Gypsy stayed at home!  Chili can go from sleeping at the rail to walking/trotting for the judge almost automatically!  Bless his heart, he will be four years old in October, and normally, we don't show them passed their third birthday, but this year, Chili has been our 'go to' man when somebody needs a partner to stall with!  Chili placed second in a class of 13 three and older geldings, and then went on to win Reserve Champion Gelding!  What a great guy he is; always cooperative and willing to work for those ribbons!  And the good thing about Shelbyville ............... each ribbon comes with a check attached!  We are so very proud of 'ma and pa's' little donkeys; they had a long ride and then were stalled two days before the actual show, and still didn't miss a beat!  Harv and I feel very lucky to have this group!  Many thanks to their daddy, My World Red Alert; the old man has been kind to us and continues to produce outstanding babies!

 

Show Time at Shelbyville!




Rusty stands first in the NMDA yearling jack class,
and is then named Reserve Jr. Champion!
 

Ras takes second in the NMDA yearling jenny class!

 

Chili gets a 'good job' hug from Harv after placing second in his NMDA three year old and older gelding class
and then being named Reserve Champion Gelding!

What fun we had with this little guy! 
He stood third in his first ACOSA class - two year old and older miniature jacks at halter!

 

Thursday afternoon, Rusty's new owner drove in to meet him for the first time!  She wasn't able to see his halter classes because she is going to school, and finals are right around the corner!  We had a good visit, and she was pleased with her boy and can't wait to get him to her farm.  We will finish out the show season this year, and then he will move to Tennessee. 

 

Actually, Rusty, Ras and Gypsy will all be joining their new families after we finish out this year's show season!  We are really going to miss those three; they have done everything we asked them to do and did it well!  It's been a good year for Hickory Hill!  Many thanks to their new owners for letting them stay with us through this year's show season; we couldn't have done it without you!

 

 

On Friday, it was Mac's turn to show, and he loved it; this boy can 'prance' with the best of them!  He loves to trot!  He showed in the big arena in a class of about 15 donkeys 'any size, any sex and any age' and won himself a fifth place ribbon!

 

The next morning, Mac and Harv participated in our first ACOSA (American Council of Spotted Asses) show; Mac was in a class of nine - two year old and under jacks.  This time, he placed third behind two nice older jacks; we were delighted!  And somewhat surprised that he stood so well as Holy Smoke left on Friday, and Mac had been a bit lonely for his best buddy and roommate!  He is such an eye catching little guy!

 

 

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Show News!Texas Shoot Out (June 2009):  We took Holy Smoke and McCormick Gin for a 'practice' show here in Texas, and although it was their first time away from the farm, they did fantastic!  They walked, trotted and stood still; that's all we wanted, but as a plus, both little guys brought home a ribbon!  Holy Smoke placed fourth in a class of nine outstanding young Texas jacks, many of whom had been shown since they were six months old!  He is a real eye catcher and in another year when he matures a bit, he will be hard to beat in the show ring!  Mac placed fourth in a class of any sex/any age spotted animals, and there were some fantastic spotted animals in that class!  We also took Gypsy, Ras and Rusty (the three redheads), but they are all 'old pros' at this stuff and never miss a beat!

 

                                                                               

 


*************************

 

Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo (March 2009):  Our second show of the 2009 season will be well remembered by Harv and I, and the donkeys will probably tell you they didn't see much of us at all that entire weekend!  We grabbed a 'homestyle' burger the night before the show and got more than our money's worth .............. thanks to one of the fast-food restaurants in the Houston area, both Harv and I suffered from the most horrible case of food poisoning ever!  Neither of us remembers much of the halter competition, and as soon as our classes were over, we left the arena and drove back to the RV park and slept about nine hours; got up and drove back over to the arena to feed and water the donkeys and then went back to the RV park and slept another eight hours!  Saturday we both felt a little bit better (like we might live), and Sunday we were able to drive the 125 miles back home!  What a nightmare!

 

 

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Thank you!Lots of things to catch up on, but first I need to say 'thank you' to the three families of Raspberry Sparkle (John and Jan Stallone), Rusty Nail (Dana Rathbun) and Gypsy Rose (Stephanie Dove) for allowing us to keep 'your' donkeys through the 2009 show season!  We built our plans around these young redheads, and without them this year, 'pa and ma' would be sad!

 

With that said, I can't wait to tell you all about our first 2009 show!  In one word, it was absolutely wonderful!  We took four to the San Antonio Livestock Show (February 2009), and they were all little troopers; they did everything we ask them to do (walk, trot, stand still and 'smile')!  Ras won the yearling jenny class and then went on to be named Jr. Halter Champion; she looked beautiful and didn't flinch when the pigs in the next arena started screaming!  Gypsy was next; unfortunately, she was coming in season, and didn't want to trot for the judge (equine PMS), but she did stand nice and placed second in her two-year old jenny class and was named Reserve Model Jenny. Chili (who we took out of retirement to stall with Rusty) placed second in the three and older gelding class and was named Reserve Model Gelding.  And then it was Rusty's turn; I was sooooo nervous because Rusty was born late in 2007, so last year, he showed at two NMDA shows in the foal class and then we showed him in two Texas shows as a yearling, and he did a terrific job for our breeding program.  This year, even though he just turned one year old in October, at San Antonio, he had to show in the two year old jack class; I thought he was too young; Harv said I was over-protective, and Rusty didn't have a choice, that's where he shows by Texas rules!  Well, the little guy didn't let it bother him!  He walked to the judge, trotted away, stood like a soldier and won the class!  Oh my gosh; I was speechless (well, those of you who know me don't believe that) and I almost fainted!  

 

Then we took Ras, Rusty and Gypsy back in for the Get of Sire Class, and they won that one too!  They are all out of our sorrel herdsire, My World Red Alert, but have different moms!  Many thanks to Kim Stegall for showing Ras in the Get of Sire Class!  Harv showed Rusty, and poor Gypsy got stuck with the novice ..... me! 

 

We did have to laugh at Chili; Harv said that he actually shut his eyes during judging!  Apparently, Gypsy's coming in season peaked the interest of Rusty, who apparently kept everyone up all night!  Poor Chili, he just can't keep up with the youngsters; he needs his sleep!

 

Thank you!The Gulf Coast Donkey and Mule Show Chairman just notified us that Chili earned enough points at the San Antonio Show to be named the Non-Driving High-Point Champion in the miniature donkey division!  Hooray for Chili!  And to think that we took him out of retirement, cleaned him up and Rusty kept him awake most of the night, but when it was all over ............. he was a CHAMPION! 


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I took some pictures, but I was completely on the other side of the arena, so they are fuzzy!  We had the photographer take a couple of pictures for us, and when we get them (two/three weeks), I will definitely share them!

 


Hickory Hills Raspberry Sparkle
First - Yearling Jennys
Jr. Halter Champion

Hickory Hills Gypsy Rose
Second - Two Year Old Jennys
Reserve Model Jenny

Hickory Hills Red Hot Chili Pepper
Second - Three and Over Geldings
Reserve Model Gelding

Hickory Hills Rusty Nail
First - Two Year Old Jacks

 

 

First - Get of Sire Class
2009 San Antonio Donkey and Mule Show

 

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Many, many thanks to all of our donkey friends who have emailed to check on us and make sure that we are 'still kicking!'  Yes, we are!  We've been so busy with lots of 'grandgirl' activities, plus we had a bottle baby for eight days!  Gosh!  Now I know why you have kids when you are young; those every three hour 24/7 feedings will do your body in, but then when it all 'clicks' and you see that fuzzy little foal nursing from mom for the first time, it makes your heart feel so much better, and you can relax a bit (and catch a few more winks of sleep!)  

 

 

Many thanks to Doc Skiles at Robertson County Veterinary Clinic here in Texas for your expertise and care!  On the fifth day, we noticed that the baby wasn't as alert as she had been, and we took her in for fluids.  While she was there, Doc Skiles noted that she had a temperature and 'went to work to find how why!'  Apparently, even though we doctored her navel cord stump and gave her a tetanus, her resistance was down and infection set in.  There was a small abscess right beside her navel; Doc immediately cleaned it out and started her on a high dose of antibiotics for seven days. So in addition to feeding her every three hours, we were giving her a shot every day, and by the second day, she was on the rebound!  She was talking when we went out to feed and fussing when we left! 

 

Today, A Little Bit of Faith (mom is Gotta Have Hope) is almost two months old and just a little pistol!  She runs circles around her mom and the other babies in the nursery pasture, and yes, ............ she is just a tiny bit spoiled!  :)

 

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June 8, our oldest grandgirl, Emily, graduated from high school!  We are so proud!  She's a beautiful young lady (you knew I would say that), and she is as sweet as she is pretty (you knew I would say that too!)  

 

Congratulations!


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We were in Houston several times during April for Shelby's ballet recitals, gymnastic reviews, birthday and birthday parties!  We had lots of fun, but can hardly (or really don't want to) believe that Shelby is already eight years old; my how time flies when we are all having fun!  She went away to camp for a week this summer, and I almost had anxiety attacks, but thankfully, the camp posts pictures at the end of each day for family and friends to see!

 


 


We've added a second red herdsire to our crew!
Itsy Bitsy Stars and Stripes
30 1/2" - red


Photo courtesy of Itsy Bitsy Burro Company
And he's looking to romance a few outside jennys this year!


 

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The proof is the babies ................... like father; like son!
 


Hickory Hills Zig N. Bock
Date of Birth:  11/21/02
Present Height:  28 1/2"

Hickory Hills Zig Zag
Date of Birth:  04/07/08
Present Height:  almost 27 3/4"

 

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Hickory Hills Tillie

 

It's Another Girl!

Late in the evening on March 9, Skittles finally laid down and gave birth to this gorgeous tiny chunk with fantastic square legs and a nice little round rump!  I had been 'hawking' her all day from the house, hoping that she would hurry up and deliver this precious bundle before the weather turned bad; we were predicted to have misting rain and 30 degree temperatures by the end of the week!

We measured Tillie at 'almost' 19" with some of the thickest, longest newborn 'booties' that I've ever seen on a baby, so we're guessing 18 1/2" might be more accurate!  She's a little pistol and was running around the pasture lickity split within the first hour!  Poor Skittles has been babysitting Wynona for her friend, Isabelle, but now she really has her hands full trying to keep up with her own little toy!

Tillie is out of Merle Haggard and Skittles, and bloodlines of her 'grands' are George Jones and Desperado!  She is named for one of Merle's best friends, Floyd Tillman, a  Country Music Hall of Fame member who died here in Texas at the age of 88.  Merle, Willie Nelson, George Jones and Dolly Parton were featured in duets with Floyd on his final album, aptly titled The Influence

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I love 'then and now' pictures! 

  Here's McCormick Gin - aka 'Mac' (Tangueray
  Gin x Hannibelle) as a new foal, and now at
  almost ten months!  He still has some of his
  baby fuzz, but he is growing up and maturing
  way too fast!  He will be a year old on May 25!

   

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Tangueray and Isabelle have done it again! 

Early on the morning of February 27, this little gal decided to make her debut, and we couldn't have been more delighted!  She is very wiggly and already knows how to give donkey hugs; she measured 22" with her 'footies' on, but we haven't decided what color she is going to be; we're guessing dark brown!  She's really dark on her rear end and legs, and as you can see in her picture, the hair on her shoulders and neck have some brown in it; she also has some good old Texas dirt on her in the picture as I woke her up from a nap to take her picture!

We haven't let her know yet, but she has some big shoes to fill!  She has two full Hickory Hill siblings, Junipero Gin (standing as herdsire at Cotten's Half Ass Ranch in Longview) and Norma Jean (bred to Country Music's Merle Haggard and also making her home with Mic and Rusty in Longview), and they both did really well in the show ring for us!  Harv's looking for a repeat performance from Wynona!

 

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Skeeter's Biggest Fan!
When Shelby comes to visit, Skeeter doesn't have to walk anywhere; he is tucked away safely in Shelby's arms!

Some of you remember that last year at the San Antonio Show, we adopted Moose from a local dog rescue group.  Well this year, we took him back to see his foster mom, and Sandra had something (or someone) in her pocket for us to see!  So, you guessed it, now we have two of Sandra's little success stories!  Moose, and this little guy that we call Skeeter.  He is five years old and weighs three pounds, and he was turned over to rescue because he didn't like to wear clothes!  He 'fits in' perfectly with our crew!  He needs to gain some weight, and we are feeding him a special food for a short time, but Louie, the French Bulldog puppy  that we adopted last fall from an Oklahoma rescue group loves him; he licks his face to make sure that he didn't leave any crumbs!

So if you are ever in need of another pup, get in touch with Sandra at her Hound Haven rescue (Hound.Haven@Gmail.Com); she has lots of beautiful dogs, both large and pocket size, that need a good home and a second chance!             

 

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Oh my gosh .......... on Tuesday night, February 10, we had a storm come through our part of Texas; it packed lots of thunder and lightning, and high winds that blew a tree over on top of one of our jack's shelters! 

 

It gave me chills to look at it, but we are thankful and feel very blessed that no donkeys were injured! 

 

                

 

 

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An on a sad note, our beloved Miss Impressive lost her foal, a beautiful little black jack; our first baby of the 2009 foaling season!  What started out as a textbook delivery turned completely wrong in a matter of seconds.  The little guy was lying on his back (legs and tummy facing up) and there was no way to turn him.  With the help of our vet, we were able to finally remove the foal  without any cutting, and we are very thankful that our jenny was saved, but it's so hard to start the year off with a broken heart!

 

 

 

 

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Looking Back Over the Year and Smiling!

 

  Our little donkeys worked hard in 2008; they did everything that we asked them to do and more!  From Rusty's first show at seven months of age where he got tired and laid down in the arena to yesterday's GCDMA's annual awards banquet, we've had a great time!   

 

At the annual banquet, Ras was named Class Winner - Foals, based on the total number of points she accumulated in halter classes; Gypsy was Class Winner - Yearling Jennys and the old man, Merle, was Class Winner - Five and Older Jacks!  They each received a garment bag with the GCDMA logo, and since we don't have nearly enough clothes for three bags, we will be sharing two of those bags with Ras and Gypsy's new owners.  We have a deposit on each of them, but the new owners are allowing us to keep them and show them in 2009.  Many thanks to John and Janet Stallone and Stephanie Dove; we appreciate you sharing your Hickory Hill girls!

 

Both Rusty and K.B. each earned an award jacket with the GCDMA logo!  Rusty was Reserve Jr. Champion for the 2008 show year, and K.B. was Reserve Champion Jack!  Way to go boys!

 

The memories are great, and we smiled all the way!  Many thanks to our donkeys, to Steve Wilhelm, Beth Burgess and Kim Stegall who helped us show them when we didn't have enough hands, to the new owners who let us keep their girls to show and to all of our friends who encouraged us along the way!  Thanks so much!
 

   


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These are the gals who know everything that goes on around the farm!  They live in the front pasture, can see our house from their barn and can see the vehicles that come up our drive!  From left to right, that's Sweet Charlie, Debutante, Pixie and Sweet Pea; the middle two are full sisters and the two on the ends are mother (on the left) and daughter (on the right).  As you can imagine, they are extremely social and love to entertain!  They are usually Ziggy's girls, but this fall, we bred them to a fantastic little 29 3/4" gray jack in hopes of still getting spotted babies!

Romeo is new to our farm, and according to his former owner, he has never bred spotted jennys; he was in shock when we put him in with these four!  Even though they are all about 30" in height, they chased him around the pasture like school girls on a playground, and when they got tired of doing that, they started doing some serious flirting and kicking!  Poor guy; he just went to a far corner of the pasture and watched!

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Show NewsOur last 2008 show was the Texas A&M Show in Bryan, Texas on November; yes, that's right, the weekend before Thanksgiving, and it was cold and windy!  Actually, I should have said "just plain miserable!"  We only took the three young redheads (Rusty, Ras and Gypsy), and we didn't clip them, but I still felt so badly for them when we got them out of the trailer and took off their blankets!  Their ears went straight back on their heads, and their tails were immediately tucked tightly between their back legs as if to say "are you crazy?"  Poor little Ras, she is the youngest and the smallest, and she looked so pitiful that I immediately put her blanket back over her like a shawl until right before the show actually started, and as soon as each of them had finished up their class, they trotted straight to me to get back in their blanket!  Unfortunately about the time they warmed up, it was time for the championship classes, and again off came the blankets!

 

We took a vote, and it was 5 to 0 that we wouldn't do anymore November shows; the weather is always cold, but this year, it was so darn windy!

 

Here are three pictures; not very good at all because it was so cloudy and so early in the morning that the arena was almost too dark to see them!  And they all had their ears backed and their bottom lip poked out!  They weren't happy campers at all!

 

Ras - Foal Class Gypsy - Yearling Jenny Class Rusty - Yearling Jack Class

 

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We took Raspberry, Gypsy and Rusty (our three young redheads) to the Fall Show in Corsicana this weekend (November 8 & 9), and they all did a good job for us!  It was cold (in the mid-40's, but that's cold to a Texan), and when I took off Ras's blanket, she humped up like a turtle and tucked her tail between her legs; she was not having fun!  Usually, she is a bold little girl and really strikes a pose when the judge come by, but not this time; she stood with her ears backed (at me, I'm sure because I was the one that took her blanket off), and her tail clamped tightly between her legs!   Because Rusty had a birthday in October, for this show he moved out of the foal class and up to the class of yearling jacks, and Gypsy showed in the yearling jenny class!

 

Ras placed second in her foal class; Rusty took first place in his yearling jack class, and Gypsy took home the blue first place ribbon in her yearling jenny class; then it was on to Model and Reserve Model Miniature Donkey!  All three qualified, so Harv took Rusty, I took Gypsy and we recruited one of the younger exhibitors to take Ras back in for judging! 

 

And are you ready for this ............. Gypsy and I won Reserve Model Miniature Donkey!  It was another good day!

 

Sorry, I don't have many pictures to share, we had three halter classes back-to-back, and they lined up for judging on the opposite side of the arena, so I didn't have enough time to get around the arena and take pictures and then get back in time to hand-off the next donkey and back number!  Here is one of each as they walked in to meet the judge, but that's about it; the ones that I tried to take across the arena are way too fuzzy!

 

Hickory Hills Raspberry Sparkle
2nd - 2008 Foal Class
Hickory Hills Gypsy Rose
1st - Yearling Jenny Class
Reserve Model Miniature Donkey
Hickory Hills Rusty Nail
1st - Yearling Jack Class

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We were in Dallas the first weekend of October for the Texas State Fair, and I'm delighted to say, we came home smiling again!  Our little donkeys are young, but they have big hearts, work hard and love to please!  Rusty won the foal class and was named NMDA Reserve Jr. Champion; Raspberry came in third in the foal class (many thanks to Kim Stegall for driving over to show Ras for us); Gypsy placed second in the yearling jenny class; Chili won the two year old gelding class, and the old man, Merle placed second in the five and older jack class!  Everybody had a good day! 

 

 

Here's Rusty's "official" photo and a few very informal pics that I took with my camera; unfortunately, I was standing in the warm-up area at the opposite end of the arena!



 

 

Reserve NMDA Jr. Champion
2008 State Fair of Texas
 

 
 
Until I started posting these pictures, I hadn't realized how much Gypsy and Raspberry look alike, and Chili and Rusty look like clones!  They all have the same dad, but different moms!

 

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Official Photos from the 2008 ADMS National Show
 

 

 

The "redheads" of Hickory Hill
Raspberry, Gypsy and Rusty
And here's Rusty,
2008 ADMS National Jr. Halter Champion

 

Thanks to Steve and Beth for helping us out and thanks also to Sarah Hall's Photography for the fantastic pictures; do you know how hard it must be to get six ears up at the same time?  Actually, Kenny, her husband was on the sidelines opening/closing an umbrella; these little country donkeys haven't seen rain in a long time!

 

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The pictures below aren't very good; classes started at 7:00 a.m. (that's right, 7:00 o'clock in the morning); the sun was sleeping in and it was still somewhat dark, but I just couldn't wait to share the good news about our three young redheads!  The one of Rusty is actually in the show ring waiting for the judge to come by, and the ones of the two girls, Gypsy and Raspberry, were taken at home after they had been clipped!

Hickory Hills Rusty Nail
2008 ADMS National Show
Jr. Grand Champion
1st Place NMDA Foal Class
Conroe, Texas - September 6 and 7, 2008

 

Hickory Hills Gypsy Rose
2008 ADMS National Show
3rd Place NMDA Yearling Jennys
Conroe, Texas - September 6 and 7, 2008

Hickory Hills Raspberry Sparkle
2008 ADMS National Show
3rd Place NMDA Foal Class
Conroe, Texas - September 6 and 7, 2008

 
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And it gets even better ....................based on the total number of halter points earned by his foals (Rusty, Gypsy and Raspberry), our sorrel herdsire, My World Red Alert, was named Supreme Champion Sire of the 2008 ADMS National Show! 

 

We smiled all the way home!  :)

       
           
My World Red Alert
2008 ADMS National Show
Supreme Champion Sire
Conroe, Texas - September 6 and 7, 2008
 

Many thanks to Eeebray.com for sponsoring the Supreme Champion Sire award!


 

      

  Christmas 2009
 

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Web Design



Many of you have emailed and asked if I did web design and hosting for other farms/businesses, and up until recently, my answer has always had to be "no," but since I have quickly settled into this wonderful new world of  "retirement," I now have more time and have decided that I might like to try it!   I will be happy to design your web, get it up and running and then turn it over to you to maintain, or if you would prefer, I will design it, get it up and running and continue to update your  information.  Either way works for me!  If you think you might be interested in more details, please email me at: 
hickoryhilldonkeyfarm@windstream.net.  Thanks!

 

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Please keep the family of Pat Krombholz, Erin Hill Donkey Stud (Australia), in your thoughts and prayers; I was notified by her son and daughter that Pat passed away  last week.  Although she and I never met in person, we were good friends through emails.  She loved her donkeys and looked forward to having Hickory Hills Zig Zag as her herdsire.  Sadly, Pat died before she had the opportunity to meet him; Zig Zag was scheduled for quarantine and shipping in December/January.


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Weaning Time!

 

Our first 2008 baby is six months old and has been weaned!  Introducing Hickory Hills Raspberry Sparkle, and sparkle she does!  We think she is a super nice little sorrel jenny,
and we are trying hard to have Sparkle, Rusty and Smoke Alarm (Big Al) ready to show
at the ADMS National Show in September here in Texas! 

 


Hickory Hills Raspberry Sparkle
30 1/2" - dark red

Hickory Hills Rusty Nail
30 1/4" - dark red

Hickory Hills Smoke Alarm
27 1/2" - dark smokey gray

 

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"Camp Momo" ........... the first week of July, and all three grandgirls were here!  My heart doesn't want to admit it, but they are all growing up!  Emily will be a high school senior in the fall; Katie will be a freshman, and Shelby will be in the second grade!  Momo's three girls aren't babies anymore!  They did a farm photo shoot, and here are some of their favorite pictures!

 

       
 

 


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Cute, cute, cute!


"Aunt Susan's little donkeys
are sooo adorable!"

The second week of July, we delivered two bred jennys to their new home in Oxford, Mississippi; what a great new donkey home these two will have!  Susan is new to miniature donkeys and just beginning to put together a small herd.  She is so excited, and her enthusiasm has rolled over to her family and friends!  In fact, during the short time that we were there, four visitors stopped by to welcome them, and the town newspaper was just waiting for the the foals to be born in early fall so they can come out and do a story!  Millie and Kasey are truly the "talk of the town!"  

 

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Remembering our beloved Miss Kitty! 

She "adopted" us just before the first of the year, and mid-March she gave birth to the two prettiest barn kitties that you have ever seen!

Mid-June, Miss Kitty was bitten on the face by something: the vet suspects a poisonous snake!   We gave her medication for more than a week, but in the end, all of our efforts and thoughts and prayers, weren't enough; one morning, she just laid down and didn't wake up!  I think they needed a mouse catcher in heaven, and Miss Kitty knew we loved the kitties and would take care of them, so she applied for the job and got it!  I knew she would; she was an outstanding cat!

We have been busy trying to keep up with the two boys; we named them Hissy and Pissy because when they were babies and living behind the bales of hay in the barn, I would go out to take pictures of them to send to Shelby, and when the flash on my camera would go off, they would hiss and spit at me! 

They are very playful now and hide in all sorts of spots that we never think to look in!  Here's a picture of them snuggled down and taking a nap in a flower pot while we were looking for them about 45 minutes!

 

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Congratulations to the Tippies, and we look forward to seeing them and Speedway at the September show
in Conroe!

Jim and Rhonda Tippie of Lil Graceland Miniature Donkeys got up early and drove almost 200 miles from their farm in Whitewright, Texas to a donkey show in Belton, but the trip back home didn't seem nearly as long because their little jack, Speedway, was named Reserve Model Donkey!  He will be a year old next month, and this was his first show!  Wow!

Rhonda called us with the good news, and I didn't have to beg too long to get her to share one of the many pictures that she took!  Actually, when I asked if she would send us a picture, she said "Sure, as soon as I find my camera!"  You gotta love the excitement!

Speedway's pedigree goes back to the My World bloodline on the sire's side (our sorrel herdsire, My World Red Alert) and the Cobra bloodline on the dam's side (Rhonda's gorgeous dark brown jenny, Cobra's Nina Bonita).  Speedy got his rich brown color from his mom, and that trademark My World butt from his dad!  It was definitely an outstanding cross!

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Picture of the Day - June 8, 2008 - Equusite.com

This picture of Silk Stockings (Silkie) and McCormick Gin (Mac) is one of our favorites, so we entered it in a photo contest and with the help of all of our friends and family who voted .......... they won!  Many thanks to all who participated on such short notice; it was fun to watch their rating go higher and higher and finally at midnight, they had the winning 9.5!

 

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2008 NMDA National Reserve Champion Jack

Blue ribbon prize ribbon graphicGood job, Merle!  How proud we are of this little guy!
Our newest herdsire, Country Music's Merle Haggard, showed us he could come out of retirement and be a winner again!
   Merle was named Reserve Champion Jack as a yearling at the 2002 Great Celebration in Shelbyville, Tennessee, and this year, he won the Five Years and Older Jack Class and went on to be named Reserve Champion Jack at the 2008 NMDA National Show in Waco, Texas the first weekend in April. 

 

 

Introducing a New Herdsire!

 

Hickory Hill Donkey Farm is proud to add Country Music's Merle Haggard to our group of herdsires!  We feel very fortunate that Simply Sweet Miniatures in Powderly, Texas made it possible for us to purchase him!  Thanks so much, John and Wendy!

 

Merle was born 06/09/01; he's 30" in height and has a deep, dark brown hair coat with a big white star on his forehead.  He was on the show circuit in 2002 and did very well; at The Great Celebration in Shelbyville, Tennessee,  Since then, he has been out in the pasture romancing jennys!  We are going to work with him some and put a little weight on him and see if perhaps we can get him back in the show ring for the 2008 NMDA National Show! 

 

The weather has been so nasty lately that I haven't been able to take pictures, but Donnie Green, of Lone Star Miniature Donkeys, was kind enough to send me this photo of he and Merle at the 2002 Great Celebration in Shelbyville.  Merle won his class and was named Reserved Grand Champion Jack!  What great wins, especially as a yearling!

 

Our breeding program focuses on four main factors:  conformation, disposition, size and color, and Merle certainly "fits" all four!  Along with our other six (did I actually say six; oh my goodness) breeding jacks, he will be available for breeding to a few outside jennys in the spring! 

 

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Show Update:

 

2008 NMDA National Show - April 5 & 6, Waco, Texas

 

This was a good show for the little Hickory Hill donkeys; they worked hard and did a good job for Pa & Ma!  Merle won his "old man" halter class, and then went on to be named 2008 NMDA National Reserve Champion Jack, K.B. placed second in his two year old jack class; Chili placed third in his two year old gelding class and Jus Smokin "danced" his way to sixth place in the yearling jack class! 

 

The weather was beautiful, and Gulf Coast Donkey and Mule Association did a fantastic job of hosting the show for NMDA.  Friday nights exhibitor dinner was a lot of fun; they served delicious Texas barbeque and some of the best desserts ever!  We had a lot of fun and meet some great new donkey friends! 

 

 

Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo - March 16 - 17

 

This show will always be a big blur!  Two hours after we arrived, Harv had been kicked by a polo horse, blacked out and was in the hospital; our weekend changed dramatically!  We feel blessed that after four days of extensive testing for underlying causes, he was given a clean bill of health, and the intense pain of the injury was ruled the only cause of the whole ordeal! 

We want to take this opportunity to thank those that came to our rescue with their prayers and get-well wishes and offers to help get the trailer and donkeys back home and anything that I might have needed; we have made some fantastic friendships through our donkeys!  A special thank you to our friends at Lil Foot Mini Ranch!  Kim and Shirley took care of our donkeys like their own; they fed them, tucked them in at night and bathed not only their donkeys, but ours too!  Kim showed Jus Smokin and Chili in their halter classes, and Steve Wilhelm showed Norma Jean in hers!  Our donkeys definitely missed Harv; actually, they took advantage of his absence and didn't cooperate with Kim and Steve.  Norma Jean wouldn't walk or trot, Chili acted like he was asleep, and Jus Smokin leaned on Kim the whole time!   In spite of it all, they all brought home ribbons! 

What the donkeys didn't know was that our son video taped the show, and Harv was able to see it from his hospital room.   Needless to say, after we got back to the farm, they each spent time at the "thinking tree!"  

 

San Antonio Show - February 11
 

Oh my goodness; how this Texas weather can change!   It was 81 degrees on Sunday as we drove over to San Antonio from our farm in Leon County, and it waited to start raining until after the halter classes were completed on Monday!  What a huge difference from our January trip to Fort Worth in 20 degree weather! 

 

We took four donkeys with us to SA; Norma Jean, Smokin, Chili and K.B.  This was K.B's first show since his allergic reaction to horse flies back in June.  We think he still needs to gain a few more pounds, but he placed second in the three/four year old jack class; he will be three years old this summer!  Good job K.B and good job to the other three; they all worked hard and brought home ribbons too! 

 


Norma Jean and Harv are set and waiting for the judge!


K.B. "our go-to man" never misses a beat!

 

 

      
Here comes Smokin!  He better get those feet set
before the judge gets there or Harv's going to be mad!


Ears up, Chili .....................The judge is looking your way!

 

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January, 2008

 

We are busy, busy, busy clipping three of our donkeys for the Fort Worth Show; the weather has been nasty and cold so we waited as long as we could to start, hoping the conditions would improve, but not so lucky!  We are only taking three (Smokin, Norma Jean and Chili) because after we clip for a show, we have to keep blankets on them 24/7, and that's a huge job; three is plenty in bad weather!  No matter how snug we pull the straps (we also pin the two openings with blanket pins) Smokin is always going to get out of his during the night, and the first thing we have to do every morning is go out in his pen, find his blanket and dress the boy again! 

 

 

Fort Worth Show, January 20
(temperature 20 degrees - brrrrrrrrrrrr!)

 

We had a great time despite the cold weather!  Well, after we are at home in front of the fireplace, we can say that, but actually, it was too cold to smile; your face actually hurt to move!  Each donkey had on three blankets and a heat lamp in their stall; they were warm and snuggly.  About an hour before show time, we took off their hoods and one layer; they looked at us like we were crazy!  In the holding area, we took over another layer, and then a class before their class, we took off the third and final layer; as soon as they left the arena, we bundled them back up again!  They were great little troopers, and besides being troopers, they brought home some ribbons, a belt buckle and a halter with leather inlays!  Pa and Ma were delighted with their little donkeys!  :)

 

Norma Jean was cold, and she wasn't in the mood to put her ears up!

Norma Jean will be two years old in May; she showed in the two year old jenny class and placed second.

 

 

 

 

Smokin, standing at the front of his class!  He is so much like his dad!  He likes to have  fun in the arena, and
Harv really has to work hard to keep
his feet from dancing!

Jus Smokin will be two years old in July, and he showed in the two year old jack class; he won his class and then went on to be named "Reserve Champion Halter Jack" for the show!
 

Here's Chili; first in his class! 
.What can I say!  He always has his ears up and knows when it's show time! 

Chili (Red Hot Chili Pepper) will be three years old the end of October,
and he won the three year old gelding class and was named "Fort Worth 2008 Grand Champion Gelding!"

 

 

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Pearl and Stella "on alert!"
We get asked all the time if miniatures make good guard donkeys, and I always say "no, they aren't big enough," but I guess I'm going to have to change my answer now; they sure can point out a trespassing grandgirl in a hurry!
Who's that digging holes on our sand pile?


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Buckskin Joe
2007 GCDMA Reserve Champion Halter Gelding

 

The new year started off with the Gulf Coast Donkey and Mule Association's annual awards meeting, and what a great time we had!   Lots of good food and fellowship, but the most exciting part was when they announced that Buckskin Joe had won the 2007 Reserve Champion Halter Gelding award, and that both Buckskin (three/four year old gelding) and Chili (two year old gelding) were class champions of their respective halter classes!  I just have to show you my new belt buckle; yes, the box actually did have my name on it instead of Harv's! 
I was so proud of all three of my boys ........... Harv, Buckskin and Chili!


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Dragging your little ass!  (Chapter 2)

Here's one of my favorites; Harv and Jus Smokin leaving the arena at Fort Worth
to collect their ribbon and halter awards for Reserve Model Jack.  Harv is two-stepping and
Smokin isn't ready to leave; he's still having fun!

 

   Chapter 1:  Like father; like son!  Here's Harv "dragging his little ass, Smoke" several years back after finishing a lead-line obstacle class.  It's almost spooky how much Smoke and Smokin's personalities are alike! 

Smoke was so much fun to haul and show!  He loved meeting people and introducing them to the wonderful world of miniature donkeys!  Of course, now he is content to stay home and romance the jennys, but I still miss him traveling with us!  He was a fantastic PR donkey!


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Can you believe it! 

This is the second year in a row that we've had snow
in Texas at Easter! 
This year, it was two weeks before the holiday,
and last year, it snowed on Easter Sunday!

  Guess what else we brought home from the San Antonio Show  ..............................

A precious bundle of love!   This little guy is a rescue pup; he has been under the watchful eye of Sandra and Mike Harrington of Hound Haven, a rescue group in San Antonio.  Sandra has recovered from foot surgery and will be going back to work, so she needed someone who could feed this little bugger at least every four hours, day and night!  How could we say "no" to this little face!  Before he was rescued, he had a very rough start; he is now 14 weeks old and weighs just over a pound!  We are hoping that his health improves, and he grows into a healthy little boy!  Thanks to Sandra and Mike and to the staff at Deason Animal Hospital in Floresville, Texas for your dedication in helping this little guy get back to good health!

 

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Grandgirl Update:  Shelby recently spent a weekend with us and had a great time "helping" Popo.  She drives the golf cart while he feeds the donkeys.   Here she is resting on a bale of hay!  Don't you just love those bright green farm boots?  When her daddy asked if she had a license to drive the golf cart, she quickly said, "yes, Popo said I could!"  Some girls learn fast!


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Last Year's Memories ...............

 



I love this picture! 
Zig is saying "Where in the heck do you guys come up with these big old gals!"

 

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January, 2008

 

We are a bit late with our wishes as we had a lightening strike over the holidays that put our computer down, but we still wanted to take a minute to wish you good health and lots of fun with friends and family (and donkeys, of course) in 2008!

 


 

December, 2007

This picture of “the boys” makes a great Christmas card,
but it was actually taken on Easter Sunday, 2007.

Wishing you a holiday season filled with happiness and  

    good health as you celebrate with family and friends!

     Harvey and JoAnn Jordan   

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This little donkey is is one of our most cherished gifts. Our youngest granddaughter, Shelby, "designed" Dazee as a cut-paste project in pre-school, "Santa" had it framed, and now it hangs near the front door to meet and greet our farm visitors.

 

Christmas, 2007, "Santa" had Dazee's face put on a farm flag, and now it proudly waves in the wind just below the flags of the U.S.A. and Texas! 

 

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November, 2007

 

 

Update:  For those who have asked about Shelby, our youngest grandgirl!  She is doing great; loves first grade and enjoys spending some of her extra time with us at the donkey farm!  Recently, her school had Grandparents Day, and she could hardly wait to show me this portrait that she painted of herself!  She was so proud, and of course,  I loved it!  :)

 

 

Show Update:  I just have to share this with you .............. can you see the smile on my face!  We went to our last donkey show for the 2007 show season in Bryan/College Station on Saturday, November 17; I like to call this a "fun" show as it is put on by the college Horseman Club, and it's the last show of the season, and everyone just seems to have a good time! 

 

We took Smokin to show in the yearling class, and we started off with a bang!  Smokin won his class of yearling jacks, jennys and geldings!  Then it was time for Norma Jean, and before I handed her off to Harv, I whispered in her ear that this was the last show and the last time that she would have to walk and trot for the judge in 2007!  She put on her show face, and off she went!  She walked; she trotted, and she won her class!  Yiphee!  We were delighted that she walked and trotted; the blue ribbon was a plus!

 

Then it was time for Buckskin Joe and Chili; they were in the same class as all geldings over the age of one year were in "the" gelding class!  Harv had Buckskin, and Chili, bless his heart, I was showing him ......... Chili placed second in the class, and Harv and Buckskin placed third!  I really think Harv and Buckskin felt sorry for poor Chili and let us beat them!

 

Then it was time for Model/Reserve Model Donkey; we had three of the ten donkeys that qualified to compete in this class.  A good friend of ours, Teri Maxwell, volunteered (well, o.k. she couldn't resist my begging) to show Chili; I took Norma Jean (what was I thinking) and Harv took Smokin!

 

Are you sitting down?  Norma Jean and I won Reserve Model Donkey!  I didn't realize it when they called our back number as I was so intent in keeping her ears up and her feet/legs square!  We didn't move a muscle until they called out her name, and then I about fainted!  I'm not kidding, my legs wouldn't move!  So cheers for Norma Jean; she made me look like I knew what I was doing!  :)

 

Unfortunately, I don't have any pictures to share with you as I was in the show ring, but I can tell you one thing ................... we were all smiling!

 

As soon as we got home, we emailed Mic and Rusty Cotten to let them know the good news; I promised to mail them Norma Jean's plaque and ribbon, but first I wanted to sleep with it safely under my pillow!  Mic and Rusty purchased Norma Jean when she was just a fuzzy baby and have graciously left her with us at Hickory Hill so we can show her!

 

Here's a couple of pictures from November's first donkey show; it was held in Corsicana, November 3 & 4! It was hot and dusty, but when it was time to show, "Pa & Ma's" little longears did a super job!   They never disappoint me!  They put their game face on and do it! 

 


Chili does it again!

Placed first in his two-year-old gelding class and then went on to win Reserve Model Gelding!


Ziggy placed first
and brought home a blue ribbon
in the spotted class!

 




Here's Norma Jean getting all prettied up for the show ring!  She "almost" trotted this time!  We are still working hard on trotting away from the judge to show off those great Marilyn Monroe legs!  Norma Jean placed second
in a tough yearling jenny class! 

Jus Smokin' won his yearling jack class,
and he and Harv are setting up for the  Model/Reserve judging!

 

October, 2007

 

  Taking a moment to count our many  blessings and to give thanks for
the wonderful friendships that
we have made through our love
for miniature donkeys!  

 

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family from the herd at Hickory Hill Donkey Farm!

 

 

Our weather has been fantastic; fall is definitely in the air!  Mornings are a brisk 65 - 70 degrees, and during the day, the temperature only reaches the high 80s or low 90s! 

 

We had a baby due October 1; Shelby our youngest granddaughter was here over the weekend of the 5th and 6th to see a new baby donkey, but the mother jenny waited until later in the week to deliver our little red surprise!  About 1:00 a.m. on the morning of the 11th (Thursday), Hickory Hills Rusty Nail made his grand debut, and he was well worth the wait; he is outstanding!

 

Since we didn't have a baby donkey to play with, Shelby and I talked Popo out of a roll of hay and made a jack-o-lantern! 

Here he is, Hickory Hills Rusty Nail;
isn't he gorgeous and has never met
a stranger! 

 

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We had a very special visitor in September!  Carole De Koster paid us a visit; she raises miniature donkeys in France.  You can visit Carole's website: www.anes-miniatures.com; she has several little Texas donkeys in her herd!


Here's Carole talking to Ziggy, and it was love at first sight!  I think he is begging her to take him back to France! 

 

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July, 2007 ............... Hello to everyone!

It has been so busy around the donkey farm for the last several months that I didn’t realize how really long it has been since I had sat down and updated our website until I received several emails from some of you asking if we were alright and if we still had "donkey fever!"  I’m glad to say “yes” to both; we’ve just been up to our chins in things to do around the farm and with our donkey club.  

The Weather!    We had snow on Easter morning; can you believe!  The donkeys couldn’t; they were wide-eyed!  And then a couple of weeks later, we had a hail storm!  The little boys in the weanling pasture didn’t like the noise that the hail made on the roof of their barn and couldn’t decide whether they wanted to stay inside or stand under a tree and chance a few knots on the head!  These great little creatures are so funny! 


 

Now remember, this is Easter morning in Texas!  Have you ever seen a more confused group of little boys!  It wasn't the cold that bothered them as much as it was the noise that their feet made when they walked across the pasture!  They found this little area where the snow wasn't as thick/deep and just stood really still and waited for me to get close enough to take their picture!

 

Soon after the snow and hail came the rain!  And more rain, and even more rain!   Thunderstorms would just blow in and stay right over our place!  Here's a picture of some of the donkeys hiding from the hail storm!


 

 

 

And here's a picture of some tree damage as a result!  We were very lucky though; it missed a barn, the well and even the fence! 

I know most of you remember how hard it was to find hay last year, so this year we had our eyes/ears open for any word of nearby hay!  We soon found that hay haulers we are not!


And speaking of weather!  I just couldn't resist showing you a picture of Gingerbread Joe in his new haircut! 

He lives with the weanling/yearling little boys, but when we brought him back with his new "do," the boys took off for the back forty!  :)

 

The Grandgirls!

 

For those of you who have asked about Shelby, our youngest grandgirl and official donkey spokesperson, she is growing up way too fast for Popo and Momo; she is six years old now and starting first grade in the fall!  Although our farm is almost 125 miles from Shelby's house, we still try to drive down at least twice a month to have dinner with her (and the family, of course)!  After all, we've been told that this is the last!  :)



 

Here's another one of Momo's darlings; this is is Emily, our oldest of the grandgirls!  She is sweet sixteen and beautiful!  Emily called me last week about 10:00 p.m; she was dog sitting the neighbor's dog and bored, so I listened and laughed with her and at her until midnight!   I am shocked that she has grown up so fast and is now old enough to drive, but Popo was shocked that she is old enough to have a boyfriend!

Show News!       My responsibilities that go along with my new Show Chairman position with our donkey club have been somewhat overwhelming; we had our first show the end of April, and our second show was the first weekend in June!  Talk about on-the-job training and a crash course in reality; I got both!  But we survived and had two successful shows both for the club and for our little Hickory Hill donkeys!   In fact, at one of the shows (and I think it was the April show), K.B. our junior herdsire who was two years old in June, won Reserve Model Donkey!  We were delighted!
 

Remember, he was the little toot that was “team leader” of our 2005 jack foals; he had a giant case of “terrible twos” when he was only eight months old!  We showed him in Shelbyville last year, and he placed second in a big class of yearling jacks (thank goodness the judge didn’t hear him grinding his teeth), and then we brought him home and took him  out of the little boy pasture and put him in with two breeding age jennys!  This year, he is a “changed little man!”  :)



Jus Smokin'

 

Norma Jean


Red Hot Chili Pepper

 

Here's three of the youngsters that we are showing this year!  Smokin' and Norma Jean are yearlings; Norma is a May 2006 foal, and Smokin' was born in July, 2006.  He placed third in the NMDA June show in Corsicana in a full class of good-looking yearling jacks, and Norma Jean won her class of yearling jennys her first time in the show ring!  Chili is showing as a two-year old gelding this year, and doing fantastic ........................ always in the ribbons and most of the time at the head of the line!

 
These two boys are the old men of the show string!  This is Concho and Buckskin Joe and they are show ring pros!  This is their third year to show at halter, and now it's time for them to learn something new, like driving!  These two boys have each won several Grand/Reserve ribbons and many, many blues!   

More Show News!

This show season, although very successful and a ton of fun, was “different!”  Most of you remember Shirley Temple, she was a Tangueray/Callie Jo baby raised right here at Hickory Hill and never went in the show ring that she didn’t walk out with a ribbon!  Her “favorite” ribbon colors were blue and red, and she had a great collection!  John and Wendy Kelley purchased Shirley along with her best buddy, Veronica, but I have to tell you ……………… I still miss that girl; especially when it’s show time! 

And then there’s Smoke, my Christmas present four years old!  We showed him three years, and this year Harv talked me into leaving him at home romancing the jennys while we hauled some of  the younger donkeys!  Reluctantly, I agreed, but every show I've kick myself, especially the larger livestock/rodeo-type shows where there are so many folks that have never met a miniature donkey!  Smoke loves people, and in turn, people love him; he is truly an ambassador for the breed, and next year at the three big Texas livestock shows (Fort Worth, San Antonio and Houston), Smoke will be there ………………… working the crowd and spreading the word of miniature donkeys!  He and I will both be smiling! 

Norma Jean made her debut at the April show and won the yearling jenny class!  Mic and Rusty (new “parents”) were there to see her for the first time since they fell in love with her when she was only two months old!  She had really changed; she wasn’t that cute little fuzzy baby that they had purchased; she was a beautiful young lady!  We are looking for good things to happen with this girl in the show ring!  You should have seen the big smile on Mic’s face when Norma Jean and Harv presented her with that big blue ribbon!

 And speaking of good things ……………………. Chili (Red Hot Chili Pepper) has been our “ace in the hole” this year!  Chili has been outstanding in the show ring; he looks good, and he stands like a pro while he waits for the judge to come by!  We showed him as a jack foal last year, and he did very well!  He is herdsire quality, and we hesitated to geld him, but we have his daddy, and we needed to add a young gelding to our show string.  I have always said that it takes a good jack to make an outstanding gelding, and Chili proves just that!

New Babies!

We have two new spring babies!  One is a gray/brown (I called her squirrel color); she is out of Anna and Smoke, and with that combination, she was destined to have good straight legs, pretty little head, a nice round butt and a FANTASTIC disposition! 

And the second one is a beautiful sorrel with a little white “thumbprint” right in the middle of her forehead!  She’s out of Peppermint and Red Alert and is typical sorrel ……………….. prissy and sassy!  She is Chili’s full sister, and we are hoping that Twist does as well in the show ring as her big brother!  Now wouldn’t that be something to smile about!


Nikki


Peppermint Twist

We have another sorrel baby due the end of this month (July); it’s a cross between My World and 758 bloodlines, and should be a little dandy!  This one has big shoes to fill; full brother is Red Rover and full sister is Prairie Rose; both are outstanding sorrel donkeys.

Update:  Born July 16 - Welcome Gypsy Rose, a beautiful dark red jenny foal; another outstanding baby out of the Red Alert/Allie cross! 
 



Gypsy Rose

 

In the fall (October/November) we have five/six babies due:  another sorrel, a Tangueray baby (full sibling to Shirley Temple), a Ziggy baby, two out of our Jr. herdsire, Country Music’s Kevin Black (this will be his first two; one jenny is spotted and the other is black), and sweet, sweet little 30” Phebe is due to foal in late October (bred to Red Alert – sorrel), but not at our place; that girl will be living in France with her new mom, Carole De Koster, by that time, but we made Carole promise to send plenty of pictures! 

Donkeys for Sale!
Here's a sneak peek of some of the donkeys in addition to the three babies that will be available and their information posted as soon as it stops raining, and I get out in the pasture to take pictures!  Please continue to check our For Sale Page frequently to see what we have available!  This year is going to be particularly tough!  We have decided to sell some of our favorite brood jennys, plus Harv keeps saying "Babe, we can't show them all; we're going to have to sell some of the babies!" 

Millie, Daisey, Annabelle, Priscilla, Kasey, Asai - These girls are mature brood jennys (wonderful old gals) and will go to their new home as "guaranteed" bred!  Our vet draws blood from each jenny at 90 days after exposure to the jack and runs an estrone sulfate test to confirm pregnancy!

Joleen, Lexie, Stella, Pearl - These four girls are delighful yearling jennys!  I have to confess that I've had them "in hiding!"  We measured them last week, and Joleen is the tallest at 29 1/2" and Pearl is the shortest at 28 inches in height.  If you are looking for mini, these are the girls for you!

Liberty, Buddy, Roy - these little guys will make fantastic playmates; they love to run and play!

Thunder - a yearling gelding that we are preparing for the show ring; we are hoping to have him ready and trained by the fall!

Concho, Buckskin Joe - let these two introduce you to the show ring!  They are experienced winners; both are outstanding three years old geldings!

Chili - this little guy is showing as a two-year old gelding; he is just beginning what should be a fantastic career in the show ring, and when he turns three years old, he will make a beautiful cart donkey! 

New Pictures Around the Farm!




 





 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

March, 2007 - Wow! .......... this year is flying by, and spring weather can't get here soon enough for us! 

January was a tough month at Hickory Hill!  We went from cheers to tears in just a few days!  We slept in the barn with a newborn foal and his mom three days, and we still lost the little guy!  We found him on Sunday morning all wet and cold; mom was standing nearby.  As we watched, we saw a shallow breath and immediately grabbed him up and ran to the barn; mom was running right behind us!  John and Wendy were here picking up their donkeys, and they helped us dry him off and stabilize him; thank goodness for good friends when you have an emergency!  The vet said that since he was too weak to nurse, we needed to milk mom and feed him with a syringe.  When he got a bit stronger, he tried nursing, but just didn't have the strength to get enough milk, so we continued to feed him along with his nursing.  By Tuesday, he was up on his feet and following mom around a small pasture.  Although we were in constant communication with our vet, and he said that we were doing everything right, by Wednesday we just didn't feel like he was making progress, so off we went to the clinic.  He was on his feet and never stopped nursing, but early Thursday morning, we got the call that he had given up and lost the fight to survive!  Our hearts were crushed; it's so hard to lose one at foaling, but when you nurture one for four days and think that you are winning the battle and then lose, it's devastating! 

Mid-January, our weather was horrific; we had snow and ice for three or four days in a row and during this time, our water lines to the pastures froze solid, and we hauled water from the house in five-gallon containers back to the donkeys!  They appreciated the "room service" but they were also really glad to see the ice melt and the sun come out!  These little Texas donkeys aren't use to this super cold weather!  And neither are Harv and I; we were all miserable!  

During all of the cold weather, our truck was in the shop with an electronic problem, and we just never "got it together" enough to get our donkeys ready for the Fort Worth Show.  We looked at each other Friday night, and said "let's stay home!"  Now that's the best idea that we've had in a long time!  We stayed home by the fire and watched movies; the donkeys were tucked in their barns nice and warm, and we were all happy!

Two weeks later, we were trimming for the show in San Antonio!  It was cool and misting rain, but the show was a huge success for Hickory Hill!  The boys were terrific and brought home a third place, two first places, and Buckskin Joe was named Grand Champion Gelding!  We were thrilled! 

 

Here's a picture of Buckskin and Chili and my favorite little ass, Harv!  I snapped this one while they were posing for the official photographer! 

Today, it's beautiful weather outside, 68 degrees and sunshine, and we're busy clipping for the show in Houston next weekend.  We will be taking Buckskin (they only have one gelding class so Chili is younger and staying home), K.B.(this will be his first show since Shelbyville in July; he has been romancing two jennys, and we sure uncovered a lot of nicks and scrapes) and a pretty little gal named Norma Jean!  She has been doing really well "in school" with Harv, and he's ready to make her debut!  She is a full sister to Junipero Gin, a little black jack that did very well for us two years ago and now stands as herdsire at Mic and Rusty's place in Longview!  Cross your fingers; we think she is fantastic!  I hope the judge does!  :)

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We finished out the 2006 foaling season on a high (very high) note!  Hannabel and Tangueray are the proud parents of a beautiful little girl!  She was born about 11:30 p.m. on December 29; had she waited two more days, we were going to name her Eve (New Year's Eve), but she just couldn't wait to make her grand entrance, so we named her for our oldest granddaughter!

Introducing Emily Anne,
our 15-year-old granddaughter,
and Emilee Noel,
our newest miniature donkey!

  We think they are both

"special!"


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I just couldn't resist sharing this picture of little Bity Bug; he wanted no part of the Santa hat and hid behind the golf cart while we were taking Christmas pictures! 


The picture that we selected to put on our Christmas message this year is a photo of Shelby, our youngest grandgirl, and Ghost Buster (Boo) who was born on Halloween! 

 

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What's Happening at Hickory Hill ................ 

 

We were super busy this fall with four shows in October/November, and I can't say enough about how proud our little "pa and ma" donkeys are doing in the show ring!  What a great group that we hauled this year; Harv and I were dragging, but the donkeys did a super job!  Thanks to Smoke, Shirley, Veronica, Glory, Concho, Buckskin, Storm, Chili and K.B.  for a great year!

 

We have been busy, busy, busy weaning babies and giving annual vaccinations!  The weather has been perfect, and we have been able to spend lots of time outside. 

 

Many thanks to all of you for your friendship, and to those who have fallen in love with our donkeys and just couldn't resist taking a couple home with you, we want you to know how much we appreciate your business!  This year, most of the donkeys that we sold have stayed right here in Texas, but we also sent two yearling jennys to Maryland and two bred jennys to South Carolina; it's always double hard to let them leave and travel so far away from their Texas roots, but these four little gals are in wonderful new homes, plus I get regular updates from their new families!

 

2006 is quickly coming to a close, and it has been a terrific year in the wonderful world of miniature donkeys!  We look forward to many more; thanks to all!

 

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We hope you enjoy looking back over the year with us!

 


 

Chili with his eye on the judge!

 


Smoke says "not me, Boss!"
These two pictures are from
the State Fair
 


 

Veronica really makes Harv work to keep her ears up!


And these are from the ADMS show in Conroe

K.B. sets up for the judge.
 


Storm and Buckskin compete for Grand and Reserve Champion Gelding!
 
 


Veronica tip-toes to the judge.

 


Wake up, Chili; it's showtime!

Six donkeys went to the SDMS show in Corsicana, and they all brought home a ribbon!  Aren't they little troopers!  They make us so proud!

Shirley has her eye on the judge.


Smoke is tired, but he knows the routine; walk, trot and stand pretty.


He's going to check my what!


Buckskin's not afraid.

 
 

Shirley is busy digging a hole while she stands in the sun to dry from her bath!

 

 

Getting ready
one last time!

Buckskin waits patiently while Harv shines his little ass for the last time!

 

 

 

 

 


Isn't Veronica a pretty girl when she holds her EARS UP! 

She makes Harv work really hard when they are in the show ring
 to get them to look like this
for the judge!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These pictures are from the show in College Station; the last show of the
2006 show season.


When there is work to be done,
count on Buckskin.


Now set that back leg down,
and stand pretty.


  She never misses a chance to shine; Shirley has a ribbon from every show
 

 

 

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            You go, Smoke!
Smoke is working hard on some "new tricks," and to our great surprise, the "fat boy" can jump!  His first attempt, he clipped his heels on the bar, but the second time, he cleared it with a smile on his face!  He is like the little engine that could! 

 

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The new pup
Thanks to Kelly
for making this adoption possible!

Shelby after dance recital

Cute, cute, cute; what else would you expect a grandmother to say!

My retirement cake
I don't miss the alarm clock,
but I worked with a bunch
of great folks!
 

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