Tag Archives: horses

At the Gate

horses, pasture

At the Gate.

I had just finished talking to the young man about taking photographs on his father’s farm. As I started to get into my vehicle, I spotted the man at the gate to a ranging hillside pasture. This stunning pair of steeds trotted down to greet their friend. Since he had given me permission to shoot photos, I had to take this scene. I doubt that the man thought he and his beautiful horses would be my first photo.

“At the Gate” is my Photo of the Week.

© Bruce Stambaugh 2017

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Filed under Photo of the Week, photography, rural life, Shenandoah Valley, Virginia

The Grass is Greener

Amish country, horses,

The Grass is Greener. © Bruce Stambaugh 2015

I am fortunate to live among the largest Amish population in the world. A photo opportunity is seemingly around every curve. On a recent nice day, I was out and about taking some photos of spring emerging. As I topped a small hill, I saw this pastoral scene and just happened to catch this horse reaching across the fence to munch the same lush grass it was standing on.

Apparently, the grass really is greener on the other side of the fence. “The Grass is Greener” is my photo of the week.

© Bruce Stambaugh 2015

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Filed under Amish, Ohio, Photo of the Week, photography, writing

Photo of the Week

When I rounded the “S” curve north of our home, I saw this scene and hoped the horse wouldn’t move before I could capture the moment. Fortunately for me, it didn’t. I think the beautiful animal was simply enjoying the warmth of the morning sun, something that has been all too rare in northern Ohio this spring.

It just seemed logical to title this photo, “Outstanding in his field.”

outstandinginhisfieldbybrucestambaugh

Outstanding in his field. © Bruce Stambaugh 2014.

Click on the photo for a full image.

© Bruce Stambaugh 2014.

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Filed under Amish, Ohio, photography

Photo of the Week

I have been encouraged by friends and followers of this blog to share more of my photographs. I have decided to post a Photo of the Week, choosing the best photograph taken during the previous week.

I hope you enjoy this series of photos, and I welcome your comments.

The first offering is of an Amish farmer with his Down Syndrome son. The youngster walked the length of the field to catch up to his father and the team of work horses. His father placed a large chunk of a recently cut tree trunk on the harrow for the boy to use as a seat. Half-way across the field, the father handed the reins to his young son to guide the team of horses on his own.

Click on the photo to view a full image.

fatherandsonbybrucestambaugh

Taking the reins. © Bruce Stambaugh 2014.

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Filed under Amish, family, Ohio, photography

Spring’s multifaceted green abounds

horses and plowing

Horses frolic while others work.

By Bruce Stambaugh

Green is not my favorite color. But I’ll make an exception, especially now when every plant and animal seems to be greening up in some way.

The most obvious change is in the grasses. They all transitioned from bland dormancy to verve seemingly overnight. Once relieved of their heavy snow burden, then drenched with intermittent rains followed by warm, sunny days, the grasses grew emerald uniformly on natural cue.

Whether front yards or rolling pasture fields, the green on green effect is stunning. It may be the greenest green I have ever seen, or maybe the winter was simply so long and so hard, that I forgot what true green really looks like.

Nevertheless, it’s marvelous to see the countryside covered with such a luscious, vibrant carpet. Only problem is mowing will commence shortly, if it hasn’t already. But it will be nice to inhale that fresh cut fragrance again.

In preparation for that initial trimming of 2010, many of the yards in Amish country have already been rolled and fertilized. That was part out of necessity, and part out of relief that winter was finally over. Yes, we had one nasty, last snow that left the roads the slickest of the winter. But my bones say that ammunition has been spent.

Grass isn’t the only vegetation to go green. My wife’s tulips, daffodils, crocuses and lilies have all displayed their various leaves at different intervals. Of course, the crocuses have bloomed and faded, and the daffodils were primed for Easter.

In the woodlots, colts foot were the first to unfold. The giant hardwoods hovering over them have swelled their buds, anxious to let their leaves unfurl. They’ll wait until it’s safe from certain future frosts, unless coaxed open by an extended warming spell.

The evergreens have no such problem. They have already transformed from the deep, mature green of the hibernation months to a lighter, brighter green that mirrors that of the grasses.

Things are greening up around my little garden pond, too. The moss and lichens, long covered by two feet of snow, now look like splotches of paint and bristle brushes, respectively. Water lilies are shooting their first leaves to the surface.

Both the variegated water plant and the variegated reeds are coming to life, with the former having a huge head start. Its bulbs are pushing their pale green and russet pointy leaves profusely, fighting through some soft, velvety grass that somehow homesteaded over the winter.

I would eliminate the grass altogether, except that the pair of resident bullfrogs prefers its lush softness for their sunbathing and bug collection. The frogs’ color, too, has evolved from the mucky blackness of the bottom of the pond to more their natural camouflage.The male tries to woo his mate with his deep throated croaking both day and night. From nearby wetlands, choruses of spring peepers erupt. It’s all music to my ears.

High on the neighbor’s pasture where Holsteins and draft horses grazed earlier in the day, deer come out of hiding at dusk to nibble at fresh green sprouts. By night, they clean the corncobs at my birdfeeders.

Really, just airing out the house with open windows and doors that invite refreshing breezes brings you closer to mother earth. I also glory in the secondary benefits, the simultaneous serenading of birdsongs and echoes of children playing.

Spring doesn’t get any greener than that.

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Plowing haiku

Row by row Belgians
pull the farmer and his plow
up and down the field.

Bruce Stambaugh
April 8, 2010

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Filed under poem

Horses in the snow

Hillside horses

Hillside horses fixed in the fog,
All facing north,
Heads to the ground,
Nibbling at whatever
They can find
Through the new fallen snow.

Bruce Stambaugh
Dec. 31, 2009

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