Thursday, February 26, 2009

Friends. .....

Today's topic.... Friends

I want to take the time and say thank you to all of you reading along.

Lately it has been a crazy life and without all of you I would be lost.

So Thank YOU!!! I so appreciate your kindness and sarcasm when needed as well.
I am still sick and my poor brain is taxed as well from all the congestion but I hope we are on the mend.

Special thanks to Jamie at Seat belt for my saddle for awarding me this little ditty just when I needed it most:

These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly-written text into the body of their award."

I am passing this along to some deserving blogs as well feel free to pass along or just know that I value your friendship!

All in a day's work

gecko musings

Life at the rough string homework

Noble Ridge Farm

A Year With Horses

There are so many more of you I wish to bestow this award to, but my head is splitting again so I may save this for another day. Thanks again for riding along with me. Tank is safely in his new home and one day I may be able to write about it without going into crying fits. Just know he is safe and happy and will be fine..

It is what keeps me going.......

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Almost wordless Wednesday

Farewell my beautiful boy, may your new life treat you well!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Decision is made

I have made the tough decision of where my old friend Tank will live out his days.
Kept me up most of the night and surprise today I have a head cold and feel like general crap. It was not easy and I sincerely thank all of you for your input.
Most of your comments were direct reflections of what was going through my mind.
The family while extremely nice just scared me a bit with the lack of knowledge and the fact that the girls might ride him to hard or lose interest. He also would have had no horse buddies, just cows. So..... I decided he will go and live with nice lady Linda in Southern Indiana, almost Louisville. I called her today to confirm and made arrangements to haul him to her tomorrow afternoon. As a good friend of mine once said "no sense in prolonging it, get them in there and go down the road."
It was not for this particular case but fits none the less. The more I agonize over it the worse I will feel. I will spend the day with him tomorrow and cherish our last day together, it is supposed to be in the 40's. I may sneak a last ride .
It is bittersweet to let him go. I know this gal will treat him well and keep him until his days are done but it doesn't make it any easier. Wish me luck, it will be the longest 1 hour drive of my life down there and even longer and sadder on the way back.

Happy trails....

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Mental meltdown

Yes, I think I am in a mental meltdown ....well if I could think. Things are just crazy around here now. I spent the past week answering emails about Tank and talking on the phone with perspective new owners and this weekend did farm visits.
I have two very good options for him. Now I must try and come up with the best choice.

On one hand it is a family that owns the local feed store with three teenage girls wanting to get involved with horses. The girls do not have a lot of experience, but the dad does. They also raise and show cattle in 4 H. I know they would provide him a good home and he would get daily attention and ridden .

On the other hand is a dear lady who rescues horses, minis and whatever else comes her way. She drove over an hour to come see him and rode him and got along fine. I visited her place yesterday and she has lots of pasture and a nice barn for cruddy days. She probably would ride him occasionally and there are several other older horses to keep him company.

Ugh! this is hard to make the right decision. Especially since my heart is breaking to give him up at all!

I am going to sleep on it tonight and hope that God leads me in the right direction.

Happy trails....

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Back at it again

Well, it is back. Winter again. After a nice reprieve from the cold, wet snow and ice we plunged to 24 degrees today for a high with 30mph winds. Ugh! To make matters worse out of the 20 some odd blankets and sheets I have none fit Mr Frankie no hair. I do have a quilted winter blanket that is big on him but works in the stall. To nice to turn him out in and I worry with it being large on him that it will get caught on something. So poor ole Frank had to brave the elements today in his skibbys. Guess I am heading over to EBay to check out some deals.

The weather pattern is supposed to hold through the weekend so no riding will be going on around here. Just as well, I am preoccupied with Ranch horse details and other things.

Got some good leads on getting Tank adopted but haven't found just the right place yet. I am doing a farm visit on Saturday for a potential new owner. Jane is tolerating Frankie herding her around the field all day. Makes me think the boy may be good in cattle one day!

No word on the job or judge's card just yet but expect both to have news any day now.

That's it from the frozen tundra for now.

Happy trails....

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Frankie goes to Hope

Yep, Frankie came home yesterday. I meant to blog about it but was bushed from the weekend festivities. Saturday evening I had enough margaritas for all of us. Can you say hang over???

Anyway, went down to Cory's in the morning and rode. I was very distracted with everything going on in my life and was riding in the "fetal position" according to Cory. I just could not get in sync and it was not pretty. Oh well......

With much in trepidation I took Frankie out to his blue coach. Yes, the blue trailer.
He has only been trailered twice in his life so I was apprehensive on what might happen. Not to worry the little gent took a good look and a smell then quietly stepped on up in his new limo. I must say he trailered well and seemed quite happy back there. Getting out was another story! When we arrived home I opened the gate and climbed in to untie him I gave him the back up cue and he froze. He was scared, really scared! He took a few steps back and started shivering from fear. I eased him back another step and he stepped one foot down and panicked, jumped back in on top of me. I let him settle and tried again, when he got both rear feet down I tried applying more pressure to keep him backing. He really freaked lunged forward, fell all the way down on all fours leapt up and banged his head on the roof. Neither of us was hurt but it shook him up but good. After he stopped shaking and was somewhat relaxed I turned him around in the trailer and led him out without to much trouble. Guess I know what our first project is going to be. I have a small hill by the horse barn and I am going to back the trailer up there and make the step down not so high and we will practice one step in then one step out until we are comfortable backing.

He handled the rest of the day better and is fast in love with Jane the donkey!
I left him in last night and today I put them all out together. He has claimed Jane as his own and Tank is not to happy about it. Jane either, she just wants the boys to leave her alone. Things seem well and everyone is adjusting to the change. Here is another shot of the boy.

And one of the donk~

Friday, February 13, 2009

Lexington update

Hi all,

Just a quick update from the road. I am at the national convention for the ARHA this week and testing for my judge's card. On the way down I got a call back for the job at USEF at the horse park! I had an interview on Wednesday and I feel like it went really well. The job would be issuing licenses for all FEI riders which basically if I understand it correctly are people who compete internationally. I would also be working on pedigrees for the top 25 leading sires for the Performance Horse registry. Can't tell you how exciting this is!!

On ARHA news, yesterday was the judge's seminar and we went over videos and scored reining, cutting and working ranch horse classes then had discussions on them. What fun! This morning I have the rule book test at 9 then video testing at 11 then my individual interview with the judges committee. After all of that I must sit in on the show secretary school for 2 hours. Think I will need a margarita after that???

Or two??


Wish me luck!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Winds of change

Well, life here is ever changing why last week we were having sub zero temps and the past week we have been near 60. The glacier has all melted and we are left with the mosh of mud everywhere. I would still rather have mud than ice any day.

I am really close on being employed again....Yea! It does however, mean that I have to step up my moving time. I had planned on July but now it may be imminent. I am grateful, I know I don't have to tell you all how the economy is and it's affect on all of us.

I am heading out tomorrow for Lexington. I will be looking at apartments, houses and horse barns. I haven't decided if I will board Frankie down there or leave him at Cory's place, it is the same time distance as it is from here. Thursday I am doing the ranch horse judge seminar and Friday is my written test and interview. Saturday is show secretary school and awards banquet. Looking forward to it but a little nervous about the test.

I did get down to see Frankie yesterday but Cory did most of the riding. He is taking some of the bend out of his turn arounds. It was fun to watch how much progress he has made and to see his stops now that he is doing them correctly.
I did get up an lope circles and work on rating him from fast to slow and vice versa.
He is such a sweet boy I am going to miss him this week. I think I will stop tomorrow on my way out of town to see him one more time.

Because of all this change I am not sure if Jane donkey will stay with me or not at this point. She has a home to go back to but..... we sure do love her. Guess it will depend on where we land house wise. I do have my other horse up for adoption to the right home. I will do a post on him tomorrow if I have time. I am sure most of you remember he was going to a fellow blogger but that did not work out and we are searching for the right place for him. Anyone need a handy gelding with a lot of life left in him???

Happy trails....

Saturday, February 7, 2009

That wonderful soreness

Yes, I am sore. It is wonderful! It is from riding!! I have ridden Frankie four times this week! Considering I have only ridden him a total of 8 times this is something to talk about.

NO, he is not coming home this weekend. Truck is in the shop. Yes, the brand spanking new truck we just bought in Oct to replace the 05 that was plagued with problems. This one has a hole in the radiator with less than 30,000 miles. Needless to say this is the last Ford. By the way it is our ninth one.

I could care less about him not coming home anyway. It means more training and more riding for me! You see the glacier has melted finally here and now it is a mosh pit.
I would have nowhere to ride IF I brought him home. Besides I leave Wed for Lexington to attend the Ranch horse convention and take my judge's test. YIKES!

Back to Frankie news, I rode yesterday and he actually rides better with a day off in between. That is good fits right in with the plan around here. We had some beautiful stops and I am getting the feel of him. I only got jammed into the swells once. OUCH! He sort of anticipates the stop and front end stops when running the whole arena, this causes me to hit the swells. Today I went down there despite it being Saturday, it is usually a zoo of people on weekends so I don't go. But....
I feel the need to keep up our progress so I went. There were around 6-8 people riding at all times in the arena which I think is good for Frankie to get used to.
He had no issues today. At one point I did a run down the middle of the arena and had a beautiful stop of about 10 feet, you could here the hush then Cory excitedly yelling YES! pet that horse and walk to the wall. We walk to the wall after a good stop to let them sit there facing it so it becomes a happy place, that way when it is time to "fence" they do not fear the wall. I loped some circles and tried a flying lead change or two, we haven't quite got that yet. I must take tomorrow off my body is so sore everywhere, but it is a good kind of sore! I will be back in the saddle on Monday you can bet on it!

Happy trails.....

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Old mare ain't what she used to be

I am of course speaking of ME! After the not so graceful fall the other evening I find myself sore all over, I am sure some of it its from riding as well. I had all intentions of going back and riding Frankie on Tuesday but mother nature had other plans. We got dumped on again with 2" of snow in one hour. My kids did have school that day, the only day this week again! When I was on the way to get them it was near white out conditions, I decided better to not drive the hour down to see Frankie. Cory rode him and said he was a real "turd". They can't all be good rides now can they?

I awoke yesterday to 4 degrees and really did not want to go outside. I carefully picked my way to the barn and got the horses fed without slipping on the ice again.
They are sick of being inside! Who could blame them.

By afternoon it was a balmy 17 degrees and I opted to go ahead down and ride Frankie.
It was cold and I was cranky from being sore and this dang weather. I had to take my youngest with me which is always a challenge. He must stay in the viewing room and play while I ride. He does not always stay inside like he should. So with distractions of someone yelling mommy five thousand times I tried to have a productive lesson. Thank God Cory has children the exact age as mine and understands the mind of a three year old. We did ride and got a lot of good out of the day. Same schedule we did on Monday, turn arounds and stops. I made good progress figuring out where my hands should be and how not to have ever growing rein syndrome. One thing that is really bothering me is Frankie's lack of ground manners.
I realize no one has ever worked with him much other than to lead him to be brushed and saddled but we need some serious time put in on manners. I am not worried he will get plenty of that when he comes home.

Oh yeah, he may make it this weekend. We are supposed to have weather in the 40's and 50's all weekend and next week! Hooray! I am going to try to ride again today although this old mare is really sore today and I am realizing I ain't as good as I once was.

Happy trails......

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Yep, today's thought is progress. Progress in all kinds of directions.

First let me tell ya I finally made progress on the website, it is up!
go to Beyond the barn door to see it.
Not exactly perfect but a good start and yes I am making progress getting more of my stuff on there each day.

The weather has been above freezing the past two days so some melting of the glacier is happening out there. Progress.... not sure if it is a blessing or curse as it refreezes each night and then we have a giant sheet of ice to deal with in the morning. The horses have stomped down the area around the gate and trusty hay feeder so much that it is OK to put them out now. They do not venture to far from that area except to poo and roll. I did a very graceful slip and fall last evening on the stinking ice again...... bruised up my elbow but good but I am functioning.

No progress on the house hunt. Spent the weekend in Lexington searching for houses and helping my BFF Susan get her manure spreader unstuck from the snow and ice.
We will continue our hunt some more.

But now what you really want to hear. Frankie progress.....
Because it is such a mess here I was unable to get the trailer unstuck and fetch Frankie on Saturday. I went down yesterday morning and rode him. I finally got to put my saddle on him and it fits great. Cory did not ride him first this time. We went over how I was to start his exercises each ride and what it is I am looking for.
We started with the turn arounds and I am amazed at how flexible and how much softness this horse has. He is just starting to get some speed to the turn around and while he probably won't be as blazing fast as Harley it is pretty and correct with no hop to it. We then went on to stops.... my fave as you all know NOT!
Well, actually they may become my fave after all. What a difference a horse makes.
Harley was very heavy in the front and drug himself which equated to alot of front end stops, which made me very uneasy after much horn humping. Frankie he is a driver from the rear and when this boy stops it is cool! We spent time loping and stopping correctly with shoulders up and nose in. It only took me a few times to get my ever growing reins and self under control. It is a whole new ballgame when the horse carries you into the stop, what a rush! I think we did a 10-12 foot slide yesterday! Cory had a good laugh at me and said that actually I had good feel and was getting along good with him for really only riding him for the second time since his training. PROGRESS! YIPPEE!
I left feeling really good about it and it took my mind off the rest of the junk in life for a bit. Heading back down today for another lesson if I can manage it.

Happy trails....