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Terri Farley
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Thursday, June 30, 2011

Honeybandit's Band

Dear Readers,
Here's a note from Palomino.

Honey Bandit finally has his "BAND," his own little "family", made up of the two minis and Suri. It is wonderful to see the four of them playing together and watch the interaction as they each find their own place in the pecking order. It won't be long before Princess Suri rules, as she will definitely be the lead mare.

She is quite comical when she gets her milk. I have to distract DaBubbles, as he thinks that he should have it, and would take it away if he could. At the very end he gets to help "clean up" the bowl. The other night I went out to give her more milk and DaBubbles was on the floor, with his feet stretched straight out in front of him, the milk bowl firmly in between his hooves.

[Readers, I can just imagine this, can't you?]

When Suri gets tired of DaBubbles, she backs up, nearly sitting on him. Then she bottom-bumps him. That little girl has attitude and she's recovering energy. For a baby her age, she is as fast as lightning.

Honey Bandit is amazing. He is so beautiful and just continues to improve. His big strong neck is almost "studly". When he arches it and does his little prance, you can feel the power he has as he moves beside you. He has come so far from the pile of bones and carcass, and continues to grow bigger and stronger daily. He is going to be a very solid horse. Wouldn't it be great if, someday, we're able to ride him as he runs across the land.
For now, he is safe and happy and well, thanks to all of you.

We are still trying to raise funds for Suri's surgery, and I want to thank everyone who has helped our rescue and these beautiful babies.

God Bless you so much! P & the critters

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Saturday, June 25, 2011

Wild Ponies in the Hills of Snowdonia

Cody Duncan photo

Dear Readers,
Wales tops the list of places I would love to visit. The land and language call out to me in ways I can't explain. I only know it feels like the cry of a bagpipe sounds.
Because you like my stories, you might share this feeling and enjoy this article.
I only feel a little sad that so many humans insist on stamping a $ value on things which with worth all their own.
Go visit Wild Mountain Ponies here, and if you see them on the moors, blow them a kiss from me.
Happy trails,

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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Suri & HoneyBandit: growing like weeds :)

Here's the newest update from Palomino:

Suri is doing fabulous. She is getting more energy, growing like a weed and becoming fast friends with DaBubbles. Had a scare the other day when DaBubbles grabbed her hernia in his mouth. Not sure whether it is instinct that told him not to bite hard or just angels from above.
Suri has gotten stuck in the panels twice. She simply rolls over when she is getting her "sun bath". She was so good though. She had her top and bottom hind legs quite a ways under and through the panel, (she was on her side) but she just hung out quietly for a couple of minutes while she waited for us to get there. Shows what a smart little girl she is.
Her cough is getting much less noticeable and she is doing better and better letting us lift her feet with very little fuss. For those of you who are not too familiar with horses and why this is a big deal, the reason is this. When a horse doesn't "have it's feet" (all four on the ground) they cannot choose their option of flight. Horses have two options when their lives are threatened or they are scared. "Flight or Fight". If they can't leave, their instinct is to fight. It is not as much in the forefront of the domestic horse's mind, but the mustangs live by being smart and their survival skills, which means "keeping their feet" on the ground. The mustangs survival skills are obviously much more honed and quickly acted upon. This is one reason why people should not turn their domestic horses out to survive on their own when they cannot afford to feed them, as they are not equipped. Their survival skills are buried under years of coddling.

Another difference that I have been told about and have witnessed, is that while a domestic horse might give you a "little warning kick" if they are irritated or frightened, a mustang kicks for real the first time. This is why they survive. In the wild, it is the first kick that will save their life. (Just a tid bit of info that I find interesting and painfully true). (long time ago)

Honey Bandit is doing very well, although I think he misses all the time we spent together. (Or maybe that is just me hoping that he misses it as much as i do - ha ha). He is a very healthy guy, although his brain is still finishing up the rewiring process. He & Patches are hanging out together. As soon as he can kick a bit better and is a little more sure footed, he will get to start hanging out with Chilly Pepper and Dakota. After talking to the vet, we decided to let him get a little more surefooted and the ability to "let fly" before we put him in with the big guys.
That way he can boot scoot out of the way if he needs to.

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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

June festivities

Dear Readers,
With luck, I'm getting back to daily blogs.
I've had fun at the Horse Expo (little horse lover is fingerpainting friendly Arabian in photo) & watching the drill teams and barrel racers at the Reno Rodeo (here's a link to a teeny video tweeted by a University of Nevada student :Arena Autograph party but it's time to crawl back into my own little writing corner and do something for you & our wild horses and burros. They need us.

If you ever want a reading and riding visit with me when I'm not posting, feel free to skim through my newsletter archive stretching back to Dec. 2007. Here's the link:
Phantom Stallion newsletters

Happy trails,

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Monday, June 06, 2011

Suri runs & plays

Dear Readers,
Here are some quick updates from Palomino.
> It is amazing what prayers and love can do for a little orphan. Yesterday we took Suri out into the round pen. The weather has been horrible, rainy and cold, dreary and gray.So we grabbed the few minutes of "no rain" that we could and brought Suri out into the round pen. She was ready to go and bucked and ran and slam, slid right onto her side. She had her blanket on, so she slid several feet and got up and started again Twice more she went mud diving..then her little brain was churning and when she started to run you could see the difference in the way she placed her feet. After that, it was bucking and running and sliding to a stop right at the last minute. That little girl is smart.

>Today, we took her to the lower field and she had a blast. She ran and ran and ran. Her tail was up and that little girl can float without even touching her feet to the ground. She is poetry in motion, but we could tell that she was left repeatedly by her band, as she is in constant communication with us, never letting us out of her sight.

>Honey Bandit put on quite a show as he watched her. He demonstrated how beautiful and studly he can be. His head was up, neck arched as he floated around the pen. He can't wait to meet her

Also from Palomino: Suri still needs prayers, but is doing wonderfully compared to her start in life. We appreciate all your support as we have to get this little Princess ready to be adopted by some lucky person. I have to say that whomever is lucky enough to adopt her will need to spend some serious time with her here as she has been "left" by the bands over and over. She definitely is concerned about being left behind. But she is the biggest love you will ever meet. I can't wait till she and Honey Bandit can run and play.

If you would like to help save this little Princess and help her get through her hernia surgery (in the near future), please send your tax deductible donations to Chilly Pepper, Miracle Mustang, 30027 State Highway 44 East, Shingletown,CA 96088 or visit to help save this little miracle.

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Saturday, June 04, 2011

Bravest Dog Ever?

Dear Readers,
I'm sharing this cool book review NOT just because of Balto's amazing story, not because you'll be touched by the neglect, abuse and eventual rescue that followed his heroism, but as a sort of an example.
If you're a student, you've probably been asked to write book reviews. If you find yourself saying "I liked reading the book, but I don't want to write about it!" save this review as example of how the "why" of your feelings about a book can make the review GREAT.
If you're not a student, I promise you'll appreciate the contemporary connections the reviewer makes.

Richie's Picks: THE INCREDIBLE LIFE OF BALTO by Meghan McCarthy, Knopf,
August 2011, 40p., ISBN: 978-0-375-84460-7

THE INCREDIBLE LIFE OF BALTO is the picture book true story of a sled dog
from Alaska who became amazingly famous; was soon thereafter forgotten and
neglected; and was later rediscovered and saved from further neglect and
mistreatment thanks to a public fundraising campaign.

Balto was the lead dog on a dogsled team that was instrumental in saving
lives in 1925, when a shipment of medicine was desperately needed in
blizzard-bound Nome, Alaska to combat a deadly epidemic of diphtheria. With no

alternative method of delivery available in those days, Balto led the team of
dogs and their owner for many miles through deep, blinding snow to
successfully deliver the medicine.

This made Balto famous. He modeled for a statue that still stands in New
York City's Central Park, and he was the four-legged star of a silent
movie. But then the dogs were sold, first to an owner who presented them in a
vaudeville show and, then, to another owner who ran a sideshow and didn't
treat them well. Things again turned around for Balto and his teammates when
a Cleveland businessman successfully spearheaded a public campaign to buy
the dogs and move them to where they would be provided better care.

The danger and daring nature of Balto's historic feat make this an
exciting story. Meghan McCarthy has a very recognizable and kid-friendly
illustration style that makes this story really fun. Together, these
qualities, by
themselves, make this a must-have book.

But this is just the beginning of why I choose to write about THE

It was Balto's feat and fame that inspired the present-day Iditarod
--promoted as "The Last Great Race on Earth" -- in which dogsled teams cover
1,150 miles of Alaskan trails over a couple of weeks. Part of the Iditarod
race covers the same trails that Balto followed. So this book provides a
connection to my beloved buddy Gary Paulsen, the award-winning author who has
run the Iditarod several times.

I've heard plenty of times over the course of my life that we live in a
throw-away society. Some try to make it sound as though things were better
in the "old days." But it takes just a little bit of studying history to
realize that this is not true. Just as we see Balto being "thrown away" once
his 15 minutes of fame has passed, we as a society seem to have always
thrown away people (and principles) just as easily as we throw away an
outgrown frock or toy.

Over the past 78 years, since Franklin Delano Roosevelt became President
the same year that Balto died, and -- at the insistence of Labor Secretary
Frances Perkins -- began setting up a societal safety net for the poor and
elderly and unemployed, there has been an ever-present tension between two
opposing forces in our country. On one side are those who support the use
of public monies for helping others who are old or poor or under-educated
and those who, to quote my hero Mario Cuomo, "believe that the wagon train
will not make it to the frontier unless some of the old, some of the young,
some of the weak are left behind by the side of the trail."

And so I am also a big fan of THE INCREDIBLE LIFE OF BALTO because I
believe this true story about caring for others will help develop empathy in
impressionable young people who don't always get the best modeling in this

Finally, I love this book because I have always been fascinated by history
and by change. Ever since my eighth grade American history teacher shared
her first-hand experience about daily life in America during World War II
-- the shortages and the rationing coupons and the recycling and the
blackouts -- I have never gotten enough of looking at the similarities and
differences between Then and Now. And so, I figure that there are plenty of
out there that will get a kick out of how things were different
eighty-five years ago. Just like I do.

Read more on BALTO & follow some good links: Wiki Balto
Read more reviews by Richie Partington: Richie's Picks

P.S. Do you know any TRUE STORIES of other brave dogs?

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Thursday, June 02, 2011

This orphan will make you smile!

Dear Readers,
Sweet Suri, the wild filly rescued by Palomino Armstrong, just got the energy to kick up her heels! Clicke here to
watch Suri horse around!

This little mustang is surrounded by affection. Watch the dog celebrate with a wide "smile" and wagging tail & Matt watching and touching the foal. Best of all, listen to Palomino's voice.

Love heals!


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Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Just a day late (I hope)

Dear Readers,
I'd like to blame the snowy northern Nevada weather and say that I FORGOT it was almost time for my June newsletter, but that's not exactly true. I've been working on it all day!
The next newsletter should be out before the weekend and it will feature some cool stuff, including world famous authors in BANANA SLUG SUITS!
Happy trails,

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