Sunday, October 19, 2008

George and Alan – The Greatest Hits Album

Today is the one-year anniversary of George and Alan's arrival at the 7MSN Ranch. While we're out celebrating with carrots, carrots and more carrots, we present for your enjoyment a pictorial review of the last 12 months.

Some of you who have been following this blog from its inception may recall Rancher-woman's motivation for adopting two BLM burros. She had applied to be on the CBS program Survivor and was not chosen. The burros were her consolation prize to herself. She arranged the adoption over the internet with the BLM office in Canon City, Colorado, then she and Smooch took a road trip to pick them up. Click here for the unabridged version.

The Canon City BLM facility was located at the state prison. See this handsome cowboy? Prisoner. The story of my life...married, gay, or felon.

The first time Rancher-woman got a good look at George and Alan was when they were in her horse trailer. And it was love at first sight.

Even after nine hours on the road, George and Alan were in no hurry to leave the trailer once they arrived at their new home. They were a little skeptical of this new world they would be stepping into.

But by the next morning, they figured out that the room service was decent, the food was pretty good, and maybe they could get used to this place.

George was a friendly little guy from the minute he stepped off the trailer. Rancher-woman could touch him, stand near him, and even hug him. Alan was another story. He was curious, but there was no way he would let any human get close.

Rancher-woman kept them in a quarantine pen for several weeks. When she released them into the corral the first time, she got a glimpse of all the fun to come. They ran laps, chasing each other and leaping into the air with abandon.

After a few months of over-the-fence contact with the horses, it was finally time to let all the boys out in the pasture together. Hank let everyone know he was in charge, and there were no altercations.

Rancher-woman's new hobby became hanging out in the corral, waiting to see what George and Alan would get into next.

The new herd dynamics presented endless photo opportunities.

By the end of winter, Alan remained as curious as ever, but much to Rancher-woman's dismay, she could not get close to him or handle him as she could George.

Alan needed his hooves trimmed and his spring vaccinations, so Rancher-woman had to come up with a plan to tame the wild beast. She decided to give clicker-training a try, using an old glove she named Chuck as her training tool.

Almost overnight, Alan transformed from his wild self to Rancher-woman's shy little best friend.

George and Alan thrive on each other's company and are an endless source of entertainment, playing Jollyball...

...dancing with the cone...

...and starring in their own burro ballet.

And they learned to love modeling whenever Rancher-woman pulled out her camera.

They taught themselves to load into the trailer (click here for the video), and put on a brave face for their first trip to the vet.

Come on, George. Can we gather 'round for a group hug and anniversary picture?

Ok, so this is our half-assed attempt at a family portrait on this very special occasion.

Thank you for following our journey. We look forward to sharing our next year's adventures with all the new friends we've met through this blog.


  1. Happy *ahem* Happy anniversary! :)


    You're both so lucky to call The 7MSN your home, and I'm so glad that I was lucky to have met you two in person.
    You are everything that Linda said and more.

    Have a special day and enjoy all those hugs and carrots!


  3. I was not here in the beginning, but I have enjoyed every bit of the journey once I found you.

    These two are just too much. I told my husband just today I wanted two donkeys...and he wanted to know just where I thought I was going to put them.

    If I lived in a wonderful place like you do, I would have a ranch full of animals. But for sure I'd have two donkeys. I just love your two.

  4. I really enjoyed your 'greatest hits album' of your first year with your boys ... each paragraph was so neat to read and each picture had me going, "aaaaah" or "oooooh" and LOL, but the picture of them 'hugging' when you first loaded them was priceless as is the one when you brought them home and they're just standing there.

    I really enjoy reading your blog, but this post was THE best, and HAPPY ANNIVERSARY to you all!!!

  5. Half-assed or not the pic is beautiful :) May you have many many more years of antics with George and Alan

  6. Awwww.....what a sweet story! They sure look like they KNOW how to have FUN! I have friends who adopted 2 little female burros from the Ridgecrest BLM. They have a blast with them!

  7. Aww, so cool! They remind me of a couple of dogs playing! Happy Anniversary!!

    Phyllis in SC

  8. I just stopped by to see what was happening at the ranch and am so glad I was in time for the annual recap of the burro tail/tale. Thanks for all the great photos and a terrific story.

  9. I like your little group hug picture. Happy Anniversary George, Alan and Rancher-woman!

  10. Yay - what a great year. And now Redford shares the anniversary date with George and Alan - he arrived on November Hill this morning! Details to follow, but right now I'm just in for a lunch break. :)

  11. Whew... I just finished reading your blog from the beginning. What a wonderful life!

    Happy Anniversary to all of you!

  12. That is so sweet. They truly are a special pair with loads of personality. You're blessed to have them in your life.

    BTW, loved the gratuitous cowboy shot. ;o)

  13. Loved this! What a sweet happy family!

  14. Great, great pictures and a super story. I would love to have a pair like that, but I'm not sure we can afford more livestock.

    So, I'll enjoy yours in the meantime.


  15. You applied to be on Survivor??? How cool would that have been? I bet you could have given those young whipper snappers a run for their money!

    George and Alan are truly blessed to have found their way in to your life, and vice versa.

  16. I wasn't aware of George & Alan's story, and it's a terrific one! So glad you add the photos to your blog, wouldn't be the same without them.

    Every time I hear about George & Alan, or see pictures, I'm thinking Shiloh would like a donkey buddy.....
    Janet & Shiloh

  17. What a fabulous journey!

    I reached here from Skywatch.:)

  18. George and Alan are the luckiest BLM refuges on the planet - You definitely did the right thing when you rescued them. And congratulations on your successes with Alan - what a difference and what a snuggly boy he's become. As for "Survivor", you won, hands down, with the rattlers, spiders, long horned bulls - Rancher Woman, there's no doubt who's the bravest!

  19. Hey Linda - Callie just "ghosted forward" to me and I'm doing it to you - Drop by my place and check it out!

  20. That looks to be a scrumptious year for all involved. Congratulations on your anniversary. Donks are probably waaaaayyyy more fun than dealing with some of the scary people on Survivor.

  21. What is not to love about George and Alan? They look like two wonderful characters and clearly they add a great deal to your life in the same way that you add to theirs. Thanks for sharing.

  22. These are terrific photographs. Thanks so much for sharing.

  23. Hi there - new visitor here. I think George and Alan are adorable!!! They are just too cute for words and I WANT ONE!! Your pics are just great and your ranch looks amazing. Lucky you...

  24. George and Alan are the greatest!! Every time I see how happy they are together I am that much more dedicated about finding a friend for Jasmine. Happy Anniversary you three!!

  25. LOVE the Greatest Hits and the Family Photo!!!

  26. Absolutely adorable!!! Your burros are precious, and I just love the upclose facial shots! Made me laugh!

  27. Happy one year and best wishes on many more! I loved being reminded of Chuck. How clever and amazing that Alan responded so quickly to the clicker training. I love your burros!

  28. Great post. HA. Made me laugh. Thanks.

  29. Happy anniversary! I so enjoyed those pictures.

  30. While we enjoy all your posts, and think Lyle and Hank are wonderful, we LOVE George and Alan. So glad you got them rather than Survivor.