Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Off and Running

I brought up this window intending to blog, but no such luck.

Tuesday is my paperwork/desk day and now it's time to run and do more massages.

I'm looking forward to having Thanksgiving week off, but now I wonder if I'll take it off completely or not. I also enjoy the money as much as I enjoy the free time.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Lovely Saturday

Today is Peter's birthday. We are sitting here relaxing just for the heck of it. We're catching up our TV watching, cleaning up the house a little in anticipation of a fun day tomorrow. Alexa is coming over and we're going to play games tomorrow night.

I woke up this am and realized I had begun to blog yesterday and forgotten to finish it. I got distracted by TV and work and paperwork and visits with family. Oops.

Today I would love to just stay home. I haven't had a day of just staying home and not going anywhere in ages. Last Monday started out promising, but I had to go to the barn. Plus, I had pink eye, so I wasn't home for shear relaxation, it was b/c I was sick. Same with having been ill a few weeks ago. I had a week of staying home, but it's somehow now the same. Sometimes I'd rather be home alone. Sometimes I'd like to relax with my family.

Maggie is cleaning the barn with her friends today, so I have to leave in a few minutes to take her there. Sigh. I need coffee.

Flip side is I'll get to ride today.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Weight Loss Miracle

I have been meaning to mention my weight loss miracle.

I have weighed over 200 pounds since I broke my arm when Maggie was a baby. I have been up and down between 202 and 224 during that time, but I never got below 202. The other day I weighed and I was 200.4. The only thing I have changed to make this weight was to give up drinking all sodas. I never drank regular soda anyway and I always drank diet. I didn't even drink many of them. However, in September after talking to a friend about how bad they were for me (I already knew, I just liked them) I drew a line in the sand and gave them up. In the last 5 weeks I have had 2 regular sodas, but otherwise I"ve been drinking perrier and iced tea. I have lost 13 pounds since Sept 15. I have changed very little else...well, now I have b/c I'm seeing success and want it to continue.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Still Struggling

Today I am leaning toward taking Liberty back. I don't want to take him back, I just wonder if it isn't the smartest thing to do. Maggie needs lessons and that would be a better way to spend the money. Of course, if she doesn't have a horse to ride, that's not so smart either. I still have a week to make up my mind. I just have to keep thinking on it and praying. So far I'm not sure I have my answer...or if I have my answer, I don't really like my answer so I keep questioning whether I have my answer. Funny how that works sometimes.

I'm really struggling today with some things that I need to help Maggie with. Her attitude toward people telling her what to do is terrible if she doesn't like them. She outright dismisses people she doesn't respect. I need to teach her how to respect people she doesn't like and listen to them even when she doesn't want to. I took a long time to learn that and I hate to see her go through it...but it may be something that has to happen in it's own time. Life may have to bite her for her to get the message. Some people have told me things that she did or said over the weekend that I'm not happy to hear. I have talked her about them and she says that her actions were misinterpreted. I do actually believe her, but I'm disturbed that people think she was behaving inappropriately. I'm trying to teach her that what other people think does matter, at least in some things.

My heart is heavy today.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Where has the time gone?

I didn't mean to go so long without posting, I've just been so busy.

After being sick for a week I then had to make up all the work that was left undone while I was ill, so last week was extra busy. Then at the end of the week, Maggie and I had plans for one last CTR at Horsemasters, in East TX.

The best part of the ride this weekend was that Peter managed to pull off a big surprise! He drove down to the ride and met us at the first P&R. I was really shocked b/c when he didn't come on Saturday, I figured he was going to skip it. I didn't blame him really. It was 150 miles one way. There was no need to spend the gas money just to come hang out. But when I got to the first P&R I did a double take and there he was. I threw my arms around him and starting kissing him and hugging him madly. It was way, way cool.

The guy next to me in line, Mark Carter, missed the introductions. When Peter went down the line to talk to Maggie, I said something about my husband. He said "that's your husband" I laughed and asked him who else I would be kissing in the woods on my birthday. Mark said he didn't know for sure since he didn't know me that well and perhaps I was meeting my boyfriend (not exactly, but I can't remember the exact wording) He was kidding. So, when Peter came back through I introduced them and Peter joked about not telling my husband that he had come to see me. It was funny.

Too bad Freeley had to ruin the fun and good intentions by mashing Peter's hands. There goes Orchestra for a few weeks. Having him come was just the best birthday surprise!

It was great to have him in camp to help pack up and just hang out. I made the mistake of getting in the check out line way too early and blew precious time from my afternoon that I could have spent hanging out with Peter.

This ride was not one of our more shining moments. The weather was beautiful and Freeley was hyper all weekend. Maggie wasn't as overly sensitive as she was at Bigfoot Boogie, but she was not as relaxed as she had been at the benefit ride. I did not like the way the horsemanship judge talked to me or the girls. I had no quarrel with her message to any of us. She has an opinion of how things should get done and I now have more information about what she expects in the future, but all of it felt very patronizing and snotty to me.

We got fussed at for wearing our sandals in camp. I pointed out that we would never wear sandals to the barn, but that when you're camping you are in your "home" for the weekend. We came over to the horses b/c the judges were there. It wasn't like we were running around, frolicking with our horses with our sandals on. The girls were told they hadn't groomed their horses well enough. I saw them bathe the horses, so I wasn't sure what the problem was, but evidently they didn't do a good enough job. Some judges care more about baths than others. Jena called her horse an idiot for not doing something and was docked 2 points. There is some question as to whether the judge said to Jena, Maggie's friend, that her horse wasn't the idiot. I'm still looking for confirmation on that one. In any case the message was fine, but the delivery wasn't and I'm still not happy even after a few days. Riding safety is looking really good right now.

All of this brings me to the dilemma of Liberty. If we are going to back off NATRC for the next little bit, I don't need him. I like him and I'm having fun with him, but I don't need him. Maggie has never committed to riding Freeley yet and I"m not sure that he will behave for her in that setting anymore than he does for me. I just don't have a clue really. He might be perfect for her in that setting and he certainly has enough experience to be a good boy and take her down the trail. In any case, if they thought Brody was too green for Maggie, Liberty is no better, but he is smaller, which is a good thing. It will be 6 months at least before I'd trust him with Maggie on the trail and based on what everyone else tells me about kids/horses, maybe I should wait even longer. I see a different kid with a different set of skills than others see and I'm wondering if it's time to see her through their eyes...which isn't easy to do.

Originally before Deli was lame, we were going to do a few of the colder weather rides and then take the rest of the year off till the foal came and then start riding Deli again. WE don't know if Deli will ever be able to do NATRC again or not. Some people say that Ringbone can go away and she may be fine. Others say that to do NATRC is probably out of the question and chances are they will always be looking for her to have problems. We can do trail trials, but they don't happen that often. They also don't check for lameness.

Many of my friends think that even Deli is too much for Maggie. They don't see her when it's just us having fun. They have only see us stressed out, in a group. I don't know if she is or not b/c she certainly wasn't this summer when we were in Arkansas.

I just don't know the answer.

I did figure out the cost to keeping Liberty each month. For the first time in my life I find myself wondering if the new furniture I'd like to have wouldn't be a better idea.

I have one more week to decide. I have to get several rides in so I know. He's such a cutey and a good deal I know he'll make a great horse. But, I do already have some great horses.

So the question is, change sports (don't compete) or get the horse that will let us compete if Maggie will ride Freeley. The problem is that she will tell me that she will, but I won't know if she's sincere until after I buy the horse.

Alice's Birthday Surprise -- Peter's Perspective

This past weekend was Alice's birthday. On Saturday though I went to a friends annual Halloween party. I did not stay long at the party, leaving at 8pm because I had a plan...an evil birthday plan...

After I got back to the house on Saturday night, Alice called and told me how dissapointed I was that I did not surprise her for her birthday by driving over that afternoon. I told her that I had really wanted to go to Alexa's party since she only has it once a year. You can imagine the response I got from that, but I knew what I was saying. I also told her that I wanted to stay home so I could do my normal Sunday cleaning chores. She was dissapointed but she said she understood.

I woke up the next morning at 5am and took care of the dogs before loading up Frankie and heading out to the camp site (about a 2.5 hour drive). I got to the camp site just in time to get out to the first P&R location (a point on the trail where the horse's Pulse and Respiration are taken to make sure that the horse is fit enough to continue). Alice had not been through so all I had to do was sit and wait for her to get there.

While waiting, I saw a few of Alice's camp-neighbours and they told me how dissappointed Alice was that I had not driven over on Saturday. They all agreed that Alice would be very surprised. And she was. When she saw me her jaw dropped and she gave me a big hug and was quite happy that I had appeared. Oh, and Maggie also was surprised.

So what did I get for giving her the surprise? A mangled hand. It was dusk before the awards meeting even began so in order to facilitate a speedy departure, Jenna (a friend of Maggies who had come with us) and I went to load up the three horses. In order to load Freeley, you have to keep a hold of his lead rope after he loads into the trailer to keep him from backing out. So Jenna loaded Freeley into the trailer and I held the lead rope. Unfortunately, Freeley decided he wated out of the trailer and jerked back. Since I was holding on to the lead line, it resulted in my left hand slamming into the side of the trailer causing a number of cuts and scrapes on the back of the fingers and some rope burns on the fronts of the fingers. Also my fingers are somewhat swollen and bruised. No cello playing for me for a while until my fingers heal.

Regardless, it was worth it to surprise Alice like that. We had a good afternoon together packing up camp and all so I think it was worth suprising her like that.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Prayers for a friend

I just got word that the daughter of one of my horsey friends fell off her pony tonight and broke her arm. She's really upset feeling like it shouldn't have happened. I tried to tell her that all kids fall off and bones get broken. Maggie fell off at 5 or 6 and broke her collar one. We all survived and she was back on her pony before we knew it! God Speed to my friend!

Photos of Maggie and Brody

These are photos taken by Jim Edmonson at the Region 4 benefit ride in Decatur, TX on Oct 6-7. He says that he is only an amateur, but the photos are just fantastic. He captured Maggie and Brody just perfectly and caught them in moments when they were both smiling and getting along. Thanks so much for sharing these photos.

Fantastic Video

My husband just shared this link with me and I thought it was wonderful.

This is a story about a guy, a guy like most of us, common, questioning his existence,
measuring himself to others, never believing in his abilities or his worth.

Then one day, his passion outgrew his fears as he stepped onto a stage, a stage that took
him to a place beyond his self imposed prison.

Watch the faces of the judges as this guy walks out on the stage. You can almost see what
they're thinking as they pre-judge this guy based on his looks and the fact that he's a cell
phone salesman.

Maybe this guy stopped believing in what people told him for so many years and ultimately started listening to his passion.


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

I'm sick for real--Wednesday update

After fighting it all week believing from moment to moment I was feeling better, I decided to go to the doctor. By the time I went in I was sure that I was just making it up and I didn't actually need to go. But, the doctor said I had a fever, my asthma was off the charts and I should be there, so I guess it's good I went. He gave me four prescriptions, a shot of steroids, a breathing treatment and the admonishment to come back in 10-12 days to make sure my ear infection (I haven't had an ear infection since I was a kid) was under control.

I also am to take tomorrow off. I have been avoiding taking off tomorrow b/c it's my Springtown music therapy day. I needed to buy grain and I needed to work tomorrow. This mean that I have to make up the day in a few weeks, which I hate doing! I keep thinking I can have a real schedule and see everyone on time and it's just not happening. GRRRR. I sent Springtown my doctors note. I'm blogging about it. Hopefully, they'll KNOW I'm not a faker. I even downloaded music and made some cd's today, anticipating not being able to sing tomorrow, but I guess I'll have that for next time.

And there are still rumors circulating that Deli is still lame. I'm home sick, so I can't prove it one way or another, and Cat says she looks fine. It's so stressing me out. I don't know if I am in denial, if there's nothing wrong with her, but Nicole is seeing things, or if she's always looked this way. I just don't know. She's fat with the baby, so her rear end looks weaker than usual. I suppose it could be changing her overall balance. I just know that a month ago Deli was Nicole's favorite school horse and now she's not and there is not reason for her not to be ridden. I used her 10 days ago and she looked great. She's still a little gimpy on her front right, but tons better after the shoes. I even called my vet in a state of paranoia, who reassured me of what we found that day. She said that since she's been laid off for the last month she's likely to not be as strong as she was when she was ridden every day. So, the only way to get her over the weakness is to ride her and make her strong again.

Tomorrow I will sleep in and do as little as possible. I have watched all the TV I want to watch. I want to read my book Blessed are the Broodmares, but I can't find it. I have stuck it some place and can't find it. How annoying!

Maggie is spending the night at Cat's (I think) but may be coming home. I can't call b/c both their phones have dead batteries, so I just have to wait for someone to tell me they are somewhere. Maggie was jumping Joe in her new saddle. She told Cat it felt weird and she isn't sure she likes it...oh well.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

I'm still sick

Peter came home and told me that he feels bad too. I told him he wasn't allowed to be sick b/c it was my turn to be taken care of and if he gets sick then I end up taking care of both of us. I said this tongue in cheek, but there is some truth in it...It seems like every time I get sick, he follows suit. I'm sure it's that he gets my bugs, but it's so inconvenient when we are both sick. Just once I'd like to be the only sick one in the house and have someone take care of me! I'm really not trying to sound hateful, but I know, reading my own words it sounds really hateful. I just want the chance to be pampered and cared for occasionally...

I'm so tired of being sick. I feel terrible and I want it to go away! I'm not sure I'm going to be ready to go tomorrow. I need to go back to work, but I feel so crummy. It may be time for a doctor.

I have to get out tomorrow. I have to pay for the farrier and I need to see a few clients. I just don't hardly have the energy to move. So, I guess I'll make tomorrow a light day and just do what is necessary and no more. I have to go to Springtown on Thursday. I so need some new material. I'm bored with myself and my music strategies. It's time for something new.

Monday, October 8, 2007

I'm sick

I have that cold I've been avoiding. I have really been lucky and stayed healthy, but now I'm sick. I started getting sick on Thursday last week, but I didn't start to feel really bad until I was on my way home last night from the CTR. I canceled all my activities for today and for tomorrow. I'm going to stay in and just try to feel better. I even was lucky enough to have someone bring Maggie home and they are picking her up before school tomorrow. Tuesday will be a similar day and I hope to sleep and watch TV for most of it.

Maggie did great at the CTR. She came in 5th again (well I guess that's really last, but she doesn't care) She and Brody had a great time. She's going to ride him again in two weeks at the next CTR. She and Jena had so much fun riding, swimming and just playing with the other kids. It was a good w/e, even though I was sick.

I discovered that Freeley is really not suited to riding safety. It made him nuts to have follow and never catch the last rider in line. He wanted to catch up and while he was never uncontrollable, he wasn't really good either. He kept trying to get up the next riders hindend and was only happy once they were truly gone for good. On the other hand, I rode him alone for one of the first times ever and he was fantastic. It was so nice to have my buddy out there on the trail. I found that I enjoyed not talking, just riding and enjoying the day.

We brought home a little puppy for the day for my friend Karen. Her son picked her up this evening and Maggie is still missing her. She was cute, a little miniature pincher. She will be for my friend's son 's birthday. She was a lot of fun and my big guys were actually quite nice to her. I was very surprised they were so good. Frankie wanted to play, but I kept a close eye on him.

Hopefully I'll get to feeling better and be back to riding by Wednesday. I need to play with Liberty some more.

Nicole said she had Deli out today and that she looked lame and wouldn't track to the left in the round pen. I wasn't there, so I don't know what was going on, but sometimes she's just ornery that way, so it's hard for me to know. I'll hopefully get her out on Wednesday and see what she's doing and if there is really a problem or not. I don't know what I'm going to do with Maggie's broken heart if that mare doesn't get sound eventually. I can already see myself pulling away from her in preparation for the tragic reality. It's not fair to Deli b/c she might be OK eventually, but it breaks my heart so much to see my animals in pain I suspect I do it to save myself hurting when they have to leave me.

Well, off to bed with me. I'm pooped and still coughing.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

A Brief, free moment

I am in between activities for the moment and just want to sit. I have read my email, should start on supper, need to start packing the truck for the next great adventure. I keep hoping for a completely free weekend to just sit and enjoy the cooler weather...only it hasn't gotten cooler and I'm just too darn busy.

No word back yet from Crowley. I'm not going to contact them again. I have enough work to do and I will do it well and hopefully not be overly stressed. I'd love to have the paycheck and if they call me I will go, but I also like the idea of being able to clean my house and just be alone sometimes. Right now I'm not home except when everyone else is...which is why I'm just sitting here with my random thoughts for a few minutes.

I have papers to write, assessments to do shortly too, so this will be short...unless I keep procrastinating.

I worked with Liberty last night when I ran out to the barn. I went b/c Nicole had called to tell me that she couldn't get Deli's feet cleaned. Turns out it was just the pads that the farrier put in the shoes, not the hard clay she thought it was. I caught Liberty and longed him in the round pen. I worked on him giving his head to the sides and tried to teach him to disengage his haunches. Either I don't teach that so well (likely) or he doesn't like to do it. He almost reared up when I put pressure on him, but I popped him and asked for the disengagement again and after that he seemed to understand. He actually longes better than he disengages, which is interesting. Most younger horses learning to longe just move their butts over in my limited experience.

Maggie went out to play with him today. She sent me a photo and he was in the barn which likely means that he pooped everywhere. I like him, but I'm still not sure. Too tired tonight to be too excited!

OK, back to the trenches.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

So Tired today

I have slept almost all day today. I got up, took Maggie to school and then went to the grocery store. When I got back from the store, I did paperwork and lamented that I had to see clients all afternoon. I ended up rescheduling one of the clients. The other one never called me back...at least not till I had fallen asleep and couldn't be reached. I slept 3 hours today and feel like I could go back to sleep any second.

Tomorrow is a springtown day. I have a lot of paperwork to do this week too. I'm just so pooped. I don't know why except I think it could be all the ragweed. My asthma is wearing me out.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Working with Liberty

I had about a half hour to work with Liberty today. He still isn't getting into the herd, but they were coming by him closer and talking to him a bit today. They let him eat and drink without incident so that's not a problem.

It was hot and I was having trouble focusing, so I kept it short and sweet. I worked him in hand on the longe and over ground poles and cavelletti. I also worked on teaching him to move away from pressure on the ground sideways. He was great from the left, but was clearly clueless about handling him from the right. He tries very hard to please, but he didn't know what I wanted him to do at all. I need to work with the dressage whip as well so I can give him better cues on the ground.

He was jumpy today, looking for a herd of horses to be friends with and calling. Another boarder had her horses out and rode off and he called after them for a little while, but when the other horses didn't call back he went back to work. I tied him to the trailer and brushed him and tried some saddles on him. Maggie's english wasn't the right size on him, so off to ebay it goes. My western was a little big, but not bad. Her western seems ok too. He didn't seem small to me at Karen's, but he does at home since I've been riding Freeley.

I won't get to see him tomorrow, but I hope that I can get on him on Wednesday afternoon.

I'm still not sure about long term. He is a beautiful horse and I like him a lot. I can't say I love him yet, but I have always been a fan of waiting to see. I know that I am being logical. Deli looks better than I expected when I began this journey with this horse. I'm torn b/c I think he will be fantastic and I'd like to work with him, but I worry about what I'd do if this time next year I have 5 horses. I didn't have 5 horses when I had 15 acres that was just mine. What if something happens at Jackie's or she started making me pay what she charges now every month in board...I have it sweet, and I know it, but I can't imagine paying for all of them full price. Anyway, it's a lot to think about. I don't want to let Karen down...I know Peter would really rather I not do this venture. It's a lot of responsibility and I will have to look to God for guidance.


This is a rant...if you don't wish to read my rant, skip this post now.

I experienced rejection today. I hate rejection. I have a client I've been seeing for both music and massage therapy since May. I didn't feel like I was a good music therapist for him and discussed it with his mom last week. We both agreed that he needed a different music therapist. He hits me when he doesn't like what we're doing. His mom says that I don't hold his attention. It's Ok, I don't mind as I'm tired of getting beat up on. However, we did agree that he likes my massages and I'd keep doing that. I got an email today from the agency with a note from his mom saying that she wanted a different massage therapist, one who was punctual and could keep the same schedule each week. I was so angry since I do go the same time each week and I have been on time or early most weeks...She is the one who is inflexible. A few times I've been to their house early before they get home from where they are. It seems to bother her that I don't like her son hitting me. All in all, I'm really relieved that I don't have to go anymore, but what upsets me is that she had to blame me for her preference. If she had told the agency that she doesn't like me and wants a new therapist, that wouldn't bother me near as much as her making her preference my fault. She's not able to just say "I don't like Alice and I want a new therapist" she has to tell the people I work for that I am inadequate.

Why do people do that? why can't people just be honest. She and I sat and talked for a good 20 minutes the other night. She had plenty of chance to say: I want a new therapist. I could have gone to the agency and said: she wants a new therapist. It seems like it's really all about power with these folks. They not only want to dump you, they want to look like they've been wronged in the process.

I've been over the conversation trying to figure out when the conversation from happy to sad happened. I thought we were bonding over a conversation in the dining room, and she was evidently deciding she didn't want me to be a therapist and concocting a story for my demise. The agency has told me that people change their minds about their therapists all the time, so that it's usually nothing personal. And, I have stated above that I don't actually like this family anyway...I just don't get why they had to lie about the reasons they don't want me as a therapist. Sigh.