Minnesota Horse Expo 2016 Highlghts = 20 Years

Each April the Minnesota Horse Expo is held on the State Fair Grounds in St Paul Minnesota. Attendees show off the different breeds and horse related paraphernalia, health, feed, education and demonstrations for the horse enthusiast.

Here’s some out takes from this years photos. It began as a way to have photos for painting. The first year that I attended was 1995 and since then I have missed only one year. It’s a great time. This year I attended on Saturday and it was a perfect day. One year it was so cold that my old film camera froze up after the fourth shot. Ha!

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People were in good moods and enjoying the fun. At noon each day, the Parade of Breeds is held. Every year there’s me hanging outside the arena in the waiting area with all the people getting ready to go into the arena to strut their stuff. There’s lots of primping, pride and surprises. The costumes are gorgeous and so are the four legged friends. It was a challenge to keep up with the arrival of the various breeds in order to take photos. As the years went on, it became obvious where to hang out to have better use of the sun for photos, when available. This year, for the first time, there were several very young ladies with very fancy cameras taking photos for a little while. I noticed they wore the same glazed, loving look of young horse lovers.

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Since it’s spring there were a couple of babies. I especially liked the mustangs that were from the Teddy Roosevelt herd. The fella with the big black V shape on his head is called Victory. Unlike Wild Mustangs that are controlled by the BLM, these Mustangs are protected as the area they live in is private. Mustang groups around the US work to save the BLM herds that range the public lands. The controversy about public lands, grazing interests and the once protected American Mustang is ongoing.

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The Minnesota Horse Expo is a fun family event! Pony rides for the kids and lots of fine horses that you can see up close.

Last, but not least, are photos of Guy McLean from Australia, a horse trainer and entertainer. He does a demonstration of training and using “at liberty” horses. Guy removes his horses’ halters in the arena, for an hour, he talks about his training while demonstrating.  It’s really impressive what he can do with his horses. You may notice that horses keep their eye on him when he is hugging the other horse. This horse would never let him touch him in this way, when he first worked with him.

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That was part of my day at the Minnesota Horse Expo.

Thanks for stopping by my kitchen!  New fridge has arrived. I’m getting used to it.

Have a great week.

Adios amigos!


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Refrigerator died = Food went bad – Paradigm Shift

Speaking of refrigeration, where would we be without it? Last week Thursday I discovered that the ailing refrigerator died unceremoniously. Clueless? Well, it was a slow slide into not working anymore. When I opened the door there was a faint whiff(?) what was that? I touched items on the shelves and they were warm – the thermometer read 60 degrees!!!

#@$%^&*****Most of the food went into the garbage.  A very few items went to the neighbors. Phone calls, internet search for a cooler. Purchase cooler. More phone calls with people who were offering, after the purchase of a cooler, to loan me a cooler.

Keep it simple. The new refrigerator will be delivered tomorrow Wednesday.  To make that possible, move furniture, unload a bookshelf, move the book shelf. Keep smiling. Sweat. Move more stuff. (Good that I had started weeding out stuff recently!)

Cooking is not possible without a refrigerator to store the fresh ingredients and leftovers.

What I noticed after I cleaned out the refrigerator was a paradigm shift in my little world. Such a small change brought home the Feelings that come with change. It felt good!  Gave me a cleaner, clearer perspective about making changes. Even small changes can be freeing and inspiring. (No irony intended.)

Learning curve! Always be open, flexible and life doesn’t seem too bad. Ask for help, when needed. Someone always has what you may need. Like a cooler or a kind word of encouragement.

Thanks for stopping by my kitchen!

“No matter how bad a state of mind you may get into, if you keep strong and hold out, eventually the floating clouds must vanish and the withering wind must cease.”
― Dōgen Retrieved April 19, 2016 From GoodReads

More on Zen Buddhism:


Reverend Shohaku Okamura is a Dogen Scholar and Zen teacher who leads the Dogen Institute.

“The Dōgen Institute is the educational outreach arm of the Sanshin Zen Community. The Institute provides educational opportunities for all who are interested in the study of Dōgen Zenji and his teachings.”


East Bay Berkeley Birds of California

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Sharing Wednesday’s Read “This side of the sun”

You will actually miss nap time when you’re older. Milk it. Your mother will become your best friend. Treat time with her like the treasure it is. Quit wishing for happiness, create it. Every second you spend wondering what someone else is thinking is a second lost. Next time your mom cooks dinner, let her show you how. Just […]

via 25 Things I Wish I Knew Before 25 — from this side of the sun

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Recipe for Carrot Cake Oat Bran Muffins = April & another snow day

Recipe for Carrot Cake Oat Bran Muffins From Catherine Cuisine

I collected this recipe, for Carrot Cake Oat Bran Muffins, a year ago, inspired by the ingredients and the idea of using whole-wheat flour and oats in a muffin recipe. I went out and bought organic oats, oat bran and pumpkin seeds from the local coop; purchasing the amounts needed for the recipe was a wise move.

Today I can happily report that the muffins are in the oven and smell very good. The originator of this healthful recipe is Catherine, who has a food blog that anyone would enjoy reading. The recipes are in French, then English with measurements in both metric and American amounts.

The Carrot Cake Oat Bran Muffins are ready!

The last time I remember making a sweet with whole wheat was long ago and far away. When I brought it to work, my supervisor made a face like it was the weirdest cake in the world. She had no problem letting me know that. Me being an optimist just smiled. The cake was made with whole-wheat pastry flour and had a very fine crumb. Never mind. I never made a whole-wheat cake again. It was good, but then I was used to eating healthy. At that time, health food had a smaller following.

Today’s experiment has turned out fine. Catherine’s goal with the recipe was: “I really wanted to create a flavorful yet healthy and hearty bran muffin… No compromise here!”

Taste wise the muffin is a light, cakelike treat with a deep color! Good enough to serve with coffee or tea and share with friends. (YUM Factor!!!!!) They stay moist and cake like.

To Catherine’s recipe I added coconut and used a sprinkle of allspice and ginger as I was out of nutmeg. Here’s the recipe:


The muffin batter

1 1/4 cup boiling water 300 ml

(1/3 cup) canola (colza) oil 80 ml

(1 cup) quick oatmeal (don’t use old fashioned or instant) 105 g

(1/3 cup) sugar 65 g

(1/3 cup) brown sugar 75 g

(1 tsp) vanilla extract 5 ml

2 eggs


1 cup whole-wheat flour 140 g

1/2 cup oat bran 50 g

2 tsp baking soda 10 ml

2 tsp cinnamon 10 ml

Some freshly grated nutmeg (to taste)

1/2 tsp salt 2 ml


1 medium carrot, finely grated (total of 130g grated carrot)

1/2 – cup raisins 50 g

1/2 cup chopped roasted walnuts 50 g

Zest of 1 orange


INGREDIENTS for the crunchy topping

1/2 cup walnuts 50 g

1/4 cup pumpkin seeds 35 g

1/4 cup oatmeal 25 g

3 Tbsp brown sugar 45 ml

1 egg white


Preheat oven to 350 F / 180 C.

In a large bowl, combine the first three ingredients by pour the boiling water over oatmeal and canola oil, and stir. Then add the white sugar and brown sugar, mix all together with the vanilla extract. Let the mixture set for a few minutes to allow the oatmeal to absorb  the liquids. Whisk the 2 eggs into the lukewarm mixture.

At this point, I grated the medium carrot into the wet mixture along with (my addition) 1/3 cup of sweetened coconut, nuts (pecans for my taste) and orange zest.

Mix together whole-wheat flour, oat bran, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg* and baking powder, in a separate bowl before adding these dry ingredients to the oatmeal mixture then add to wet mixture. Pour the batter in the muffin cups.

Topping: Mix all the ingredients and garnish each muffin top equally. Bake for approximately 20 minutes, or until done.

Notes: *I substituted allspice and scant amount of ginger and added coconut to the original recipe.

Enjoy! And thanks for stopping by my kitchen. Haven’t had much time for cooking as I am preparing for a craft fair next weekend.:-)


Carrot Cake Oat Bran Muffins


Now check out Fiesta Friday #114 with Angie and her solo co-host this week is Jhuls @ The Not So Creative Cook. I am bringing this vintage style recipe to the party!

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Baby Squirrel helped by a man – Spring Vignette

“Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” ―Dalai Lama

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The first beginnings of spring had me out with my camera in the hood two years ago. When I saw this man helping a baby squirrel that seemed injured, I couldn’t resist taking pictures. I have some qualms about photos of people without permission. The moment would be gone. It was too tender to pass up.

There should be a fourth frame of when the baby squirrel lets out a long string of  expletives in squirrel, which was unbelievable to hear, as the baby looked at the man and made it known that she was very upset. It seemed she had fallen from the nest. It would have made a great video!

Spring will be here sometime. Meanwhile the forecast predicts snow mixed with rain for this week.

Have a great week wherever you are.

Thanks for stopping by my kitchen!


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