Friday, November 27, 2009

Shire & Other Draft Horse Gifts - & Other Holiday Shopping -- Blog-Style!

Judy & Ben in Los Angeles

Meet Judy Brodland, a friend who absolutely loves her Shire geldings, Buckley, Bentley, Dickens and Griffin, constituting the famous Tally Ho Hitch. Just in time for the holidays, back by popular demand here in the States and abroad, Judy has produced yet another beautiful, full-sized 2010 Shire Wall Calendar. The 2009 calendars, once seen, flew off the tables at the Equine Affaire, as well as the Peterborough (England) Show. This 2010 calendar is full of gorgeous photography which includes professional shots by Judy, as well as favorite shots by the owners of the horses featured in the calendar (if photos have met quality standards). A peek at the 2009 Equine Affaire Release gives you an idea of what's in store for 2010 -- click here:

Those on your gift list will receive the Shire Horse Calendar wrapped in green moire holiday paper and accented with a red organza ribbon. It's delivered with the Shire Christmas card seen below and signed with your name(s). No mess, no fuss, your holiday gift giving is taken care of by Santa's elf, Judy! ~ Still Available

And for the rest of you fans of fine horse feather, she has published a separate calendar for Gypsy Horse afficionados, which features, in its entirety, J.Brodland's finest photographic work capturing the annual trek to the historic Appleby Fair. The link for the purchase of this calendar: ~ Still Available

And let's not forget the kids! (~ Still Available)

To memorialize the American Shire Horse Association's 125th AnniverShirey in 2010, Judy has branched off into T-Shirts, Hoodies, Champion Zippered Fleece outerwear promoting the beloved Shire breed. Her shirt selection includes a whimsical Tee for the breed, "Draft On Tap -- Give Me a Tall One, Make It A Shire!"

The shirts are pigment dyed ringspun cotton and come in a variety of beautiful colors and shirt styles. If interested in ordering any of Judy's outerwear or calendars, please click on the link: - 12/7/09: SOLD OUT

Gypsy Mare Studios 2009

Now, for that lovely Shire (and other horsey) artwork around the home . . .

FDF's friend, talented artist and fellow blogger, Jennifer MacNeill-Traylor of Gypsy Mare Studio

has a wonderful selection of these Shire (and many other breed) ornaments to choose from . . . Shire Keepsake Boxes that will protect all your precious treasures:

Shire canvas tote . . .

and Mousepad Too!

Visit Jen's studio to view her exquisite talent and horsey goodies galore! She's even given us a "Black Friday" shopping link to save some $$ that's available right now thru the holidays:

(Here's a teaser of other breeds. . . .)

Her work can also be found on Ebay: where she currently has 8 pieces up for auction ending 11/30, including this incredible Gypsy piece . . .

. . . and not to mention this peaceful Percheron sign:

Moving on, and departing away from Shires. . . . let's certainly not forget about those kids again!

Fun Driving & Riding Society friend, Lisa Blackstone, has developed an educational DVD which includes 18 VIDEO HORSE LESSONS…a MUST-SEE DVD for kids that love horses. Fun . . . entertaining . . .educational! To meet Lisa, and become acquainted with her extensive experience and knowledge about horses, visit:

The Horse Riding Videos will teach basic horsemanship from….. understanding the nature of horses, how horses behave, communicate, and react, all the way to…. caring for a horse, including grooming, bathing, clipping, leading, tying them safely, saddling, bridling and much, much more.

Visit: http://www.HorseRidingVideos.ORG and also Lisa's children's website: Sign up for your child to receive their own FREE newsletter giving riding tips, and enjoy the site that helps parents and kids get on the right track in the horse world.

And finally, let's not forget to Purchase With a Purpose to support the fight of breast cancer. Visit:

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Pink Glove Dance

Cool video by Providence St. Vincent Medical Center, their fun & inspiring way to raise Breast Cancer awareness. . .

Here's how the story goes: When the video gets 1 million hits, the glove manufacturer, Medline, will be making a huge contribution to the hospital, as well as offering free mammograms for the community. Please check it out. It's an easy and great way to donate to a wonderful cause.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

There's A WHAT In The Lobby??

Today, at the law firm in Atlanta where I work, I got an email that simply said, "Lynx" in the subject line, and in the body of the email "in the reception area in 2 minutes." Huh?? I walk downstairs, round the reception desk, and sure enough, I see this sight . . .

Meet Taz, a 16-year old Canadian Lynx (or Northern Lynx) which is a mid-sized wild cat between the smaller Bobcat and larger Puma. Taz weighs between 40 and 50 pounds, and is one of the oldest known living lynx in captivity. They usually have a life span of 12 years in the wild.

Sweet Taz was born in a captive breeding program in Wisconsin without inner ear drums and was unable to be released into the wild. Since Taz was genetically not suitable for breeding, The Wildlife Sanctuary adopted this animal. Taz is blind due to degenerative retinitis, is cared for daily and has become the Sanctuary's wild cat mascot.

Silly me, I didn't realize how short a lynx tail is, and their fur is somewhat coarse and very thick.

The attention that Taz gets is part of the normal routine. This cat has been touched by over a half million school children alone, since rescue.

Taz knew when it was time to head home, and let out a low guttural meow/purr when it was time to "kennel up."

The Ellijay Wildlife Rehabilitation Sanctuary in Georgia, is a 40 acre rescue, rehab and release facility for the wild indigenous animals of Georgia and the southeast. From the smallest mammals and reptiles to the largest carnivores and birds of prey, they medically care for all species of orphaned and injured wildlife. Currently, the sanctuary cares for 3 of the rarest “big cats” on the North American continent, the Eastern Panther. This represents 10% of the known population. These cousins of the Western Cougar only exist in the wild in a small area of the Florida Everglades and were recently declared extinct in Georgia.

This endeavor began 30 years ago when a young boy named Craig "Grizzly" Cylke (in the hat) began rescuing and caring for injured animals that he found in the wild. It wasn’t long before the surrounding community learned that Craig would take care of any wild animals in need that were brought to him. Today, the sanctuary is a state and federally licensed facility that remains under the guidance of Craig and his wife, Debbie, who are both certified in wildlife rehabilitation.

All of these activities require funding and many dedicated hours by volunteers. If you believe you can help financially in some way, and are wary about whether or not your donations are actually getting to big government rescue organizations, please visit the folks at "2 Wild 2 Tame" (at the top of my margin notes) or Your donations will get in their hands, and will be greatly appreciated. Tell them your friends at "First Draught Farm" sent you!

Good Kitty!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

What Those Welshmen Do When They're Bored . . .

This post is in honor of my cousin's Border Collie, Beowulf . . . .