The Golden Carrot Newsletter's Archive


September 2009 Newsletter

The Golden Carrot



Hay folks, I’m sorry to have been out of circulation for a long time, but there’s been a lot going on here at TGC. This will be the last newsletter you get from TGC that looks like this one.


Website Changes


I did finally, after a million incomprehensible conversations with one service after another, find a new outfit, CharityAdvantage, to handle my website/donations/database for me. They’re a teeny bit more expensive but their system will be easier to work, And they have gone above and beyond in their efforts to help me get my ginormous site transferred over and made easier to navigate.


And thanks to the amazing donation by John Chun of a laptop computer for which I’ve obtained a wireless connection, I will be able to keep the website up with a fraction of the effort. I have to drive a mile or so from home to do it, but it’s finally possible!


The new website will look different. I am interested to hear what you think. I’m not good at change, as my friends will tell you, and am still getting used to it. It looks a lot like my site. But it has some great features - signing up for donations or just to get the newsletter etc., is really easy; there’s going to be a chat and maybe, if I can find the time, a blog. But does anyone really want to hear me ranting?


The bad part of this news is that I have had to give up the online donation connection I used to have (they would reluctantly work with CharityAdvantage, but would charge me $500 a year to do it!). Now, many will consider the next part good news - I will have a Paypal connection to allow you to donate via credit card, even if you don’t have a Paypal account! I’m not fond of Paypal myself, but it does work, and hopefully will be as easy for you to work as the old one.


The new website and page will be effective in a very short time and I will notify you immediately. Don’t worry about cancelling your other credit card donations - once that link is down, that recurring donation is history. You can still, and I hope you will, continue to use the regular link to donate, until I let you know the switchover is done. I’ll be begging for you to reschedule your donation on the new site ... pretty please?


Amazing Donors


With John’s generous donation of a lovely laptop computer, complete with all the best accessories, and my wireless connection, I will be able to upload photographs (and download them too!), in a fraction of the time, and keep the website in good form with half the effort. John not only researched the type of laptop I’d need and the kind of wireless connection I should get, but he spent the time to set it up for me, and brought it out, and taught me how to set it up and use it! A donor who gives not only the cost of this equipment, but his time and expertise to set it up and educate me in its use is one in a million, and TGC and I offer our heartfelt thanks. Let’s remember that John is one of the steadfast donors for Rocky as well, and many of my best posted photos were taken by him with his really huge camera! And he always shows up bearing carrots! John goes above and beyond in his efforts to help horses, with TGC and other rescues, and deserves credit and appreciation for all he does. THANKS JOHN!


Speaking of wonderful donors! Sunny continues to be sponsored by the woman who has taken care of her for many of her years here at TGC. Kathryn recently stepped up, as she often does, with an extra donation, which I used to purchase a huge truck/trailer load of bermuda grass hay. This hay will last until February, I believe, and being able to buy this large amount enabled me to save $900! I’ve got it tarped like crazy, as bermuda goes bad if you sneeze on it, and hopefully won’t lose any to rain damage (if we ever get rain again....) THANK YOU AGAIN, Kathryn, for your continuing kindness and support of TGC.




I want to take a second here to thank Helle Gylling, who for a year was a kind and generous donor to TGC, first sponsoring Sweet Debbie, and then stepping up for Surely as well. Helle has made some enormous life decisions, and has had to end her sponsorship of the girls, but her kindness certainly made a big difference in their lives, and we hope she has success in her new endeavors, and finds herself able to come back to us soon. Bye Helle! Good luck!   Now, Surely and Debbie are looking for sponsors ... hint, hint...!


The Handsome Hershey


Remember Hershey on June 14 when he arrived at TGC?



And Hershey one month later?



How about Hershey now, carrying Kaylee?




And carrying Julia?



And working with bright eyes, pricked ears and a relaxed manner under Sierra?




These pics were taken on two different days - we’re taking it slow, to build up muscle (so wasted during his starvation period). But Hershey is enthusiastic and thrilled to be working. I wouldn’t put my weight on him yet, but little Sierra and Kaylee and Julia are just what he needs right now. He knows his riders, too, showing more spirit and forward movement with Sierra, and walking calmly and steadily for Kaylee. Each morning as I head to my stall line to clean stalls, he’s waiting for me and encourages me with steady burbling to ‘get a move on’ creating his morning bucket. He’s so healthy now that I have cut that bucket back to half what it was, but he wants it - no joking around now, where’s my breakfast! Remember, at that point, he’s been eating the morning bermuda grass for over an hour .... really hungry, or just greedy? He’s a doll tho, never crowds or pushes, but is never further away from me than good manners demand, until that feed, and his nose, are in his feeder. Hershey is a rare bird, to come back so dramatically in such a short time, and we’re all to thank for accomplishing this miracle. Thank you ALL for your help in getting the extra rations Hershey needed. Isn’t it just amazing?




At long last, I may have a volunteer who can come on a regular basis, and has the horse knowledge to take over almost any chore for me. Sierra is 19, lives about 4 miles away, has three horses of her own, and wanted to volunteer initially to see if she could ‘work off’ the cost of an adopted horse, a young one she could train and show (her own horses are either too old or unsuitable for the show circuit). Circumstances changed in her family, and she didn’t get a job she thought she might, so she is not looking to adopt a horse now, but that works to my advantage! In exchange for the experience and riding lessons from me, Sierra comes three times a week in the afternoon. She has helped with cleaning and feeding horses; helped water and put the TGC horses away; exercised (both riding and lunging) Star, Song, Joyful, Ronan, Rocky, Surely,,Dion and Hershey; and has bathed and groomed over a dozen horses including the chore of cleaning Surely’s legs. In particular, she has been willing and able to begin ground work with Ronan, driving him several times now. This is HUGE for this young horse - we hope to have her riding him soon as their communication is proceeding with leaps and bounds.



In addition, we have plans for her to work both Joyful and Star enough that she can take them to local shows - hopefully, we can impress some people with these "rescue" horses!


I’m very grateful for Sierra’s help, as she is strong, skilled and absolutely willing to do whatever needs doing, no whining! If you would feel so inclined, and would like to make a directed donation so that I can pay her a little money, perhaps you might like to send $10 for her to lunge a particular horse; or $15 to groom or ride your sponsored horse, or a few bucks towards a little "show fund" to pay for transport and a couple of classes for her to enter with Joyful or Star? The new website will have a neat donation page that allows you to specify how you wish your donation to be used, but meantime, an email to me will be sure that she gets some gas money at least for all her effort!


At some point, Sierra will find a job, and I may lose part or all of her time, but let’s help her help the horses while we can!




As the above pics show, one day I had Kaylee and Julia come out with mom Lisa, and additionally, Susan and Alex came to visit . Falcon and Prophet worked with Hershey to show them a good time, and the kids helped with stall cleaning, bathing and feeding as usual.  Give me a little more time and I'll have another page up with photos of that day.  In addition on that day, Sierra gave the kids a demonstration as she worked with Ronan. It was another great day, and I watched the kids leave with sadness - summer was over and it may be months before I can hope to see them again...



In addition, just a few days before that, Jean Kravitz and her daughters, and two of their friends, also made an ‘end of summer’ visit to TGC. These girls were more interested in helping me with my chores; filling all the water barrels after dumping and scrubbing them; distributing the feed buckets, and interacting with the horses. Jean cleaned out my feed shed as well. I enjoyed their visit, both visiting with them, and being able to get some work done in house while they worked with the horses. After several visits, Jean’s daughters know the program pretty well, and thus are more useful - they worked a ‘buddy system’ with their younger friends to keep them safe as they groomed horses in the herd. Once again, I sighed as they left - school to start in a few days, it may be months before I see them again. Both I and the horses will miss them...



As always, I end the newsletter with a plea for your continued support. Donations are down, as I’m sure you would guess given this economy, and yet, appetites are still eager! Summer is always hard for me - most of the people I get work from are on holiday, and donations drop as people go on vacation. I’m a little terrified at this summer’s end, as donations weren’t huge to begin with, and have fallen, and I had even less work than usual. And despite dancing hard and fast, there was no way to make these changes to the website without some additional expenses. So any help you can send this way will be greatly appreciated - more than I can say.


I’m glad to report that the incomparable Albino has come back after a summer off, and is willing and able to begin working again on the innumerable repairs necessary on the stalls and fencing. I spent my last dollars getting some much needed fencing repairs done but now need some help both with his labor costs, and some materials. I’d really love to be able to buy about 30 thin plywood sheets (4x8) to replace some roofing that has warped badly and created holes in the stall roofline. I need more posts and 2x4s for various other repairs. In addition, before winter hits, I need to have Albino build out the rest of Savannah's stall, which at present is a small three sided structure.  That will require 6 plywood panels (4 thin and 2 thicker), as well as approximately 10 2x4s and miscellaneous hardware. 


So, if you’re reviewing your monthly budgets, and can find a few bucks a month to send this way, I can put it to good use. And you would have my gratitude, and the pleasure when the rains begin of knowing that a crew of happy old horses are standing under their roofs, munching away, dry and comfortable.....all thanks to you and others like you...


Keep an eye out for news about the new website .... coming very soon!


Love you all!


Casey O’Connor

The Golden Carrot