Sunday, June 29, 2008

Lazy Sunday/Successful Supreme Trail Challenge

It's after 4pm and I am happily enjoying a lazy Sunday. We haven't had a lazy day like this in ages. Peter's computer had an issue last week and we haven't had the cash to fix it, so we're sharing our laptops and watching TV. It's been a nice quiet day. He took care of us this am by going to the store (yikes that was expensive!) and we've been watching food network ever since.

Speaking of watching TV...Peter and I are close to dumping our dish. It's risen to $70/month. As much as I hate to do that, I think I would rather have free TV with an antenna and increase my netflix account to 4 at a time. There is very little I can't see that I want to see. I can buy DVD's on ebay...I just think about how much money it is every month and wonder if we really need to bother with it. I'm sure the answer is no. We can watch TV on our computer...

Speaking of which: I heard on Clark Howard the other night that some of the cable internet companies are starting to charge for people who watch TV on the internet since they are also cable TV providers adn they want to recoup their lost investment. That made me really, really mad! And with the advent of digital age, you have to buy a converter box to watch free TV...I don't want to have to have cable. I want it to be something I have b/c I want it.

Yesterday Maggie and I attended the 2nd Supreme Trail Challenge. We had a great time, though maggie had to pull b/c Freeley was lame at the 2nd P&R. Liberty was fantastic and did the last 7 miles alone. I was really proud of him.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Jerry Jones, Will You Buy My House? (Part deux)

Peter told me to do a search for Jerry Jones, buy my house...I did and found out my other blog post came to the top of the list. That was pretty cool to have my post about Jerry buying my house come to my attention that way.

As the stadium gets bigger, I hope more and more each day that Jerry, or some smart hotel person, will buy up this block and turn it into something other than our house...and we'll walk away, get completely out of debt and buy houses in the country. Are you listening?

Not much to report on this week. Maggie is gone to my mom's and they are having a great time. I didn't work out and gained 2.9 pounds...but I think some of it was water weight. I rode a nice trail on Monday, but haven't ridden since. I was supposed to ride tomorrow, but it didn't work out...I'm painting Maggie's room. OK, take a deep breathe...

Oh yeah...and I talked to the owner of Fiera's sire the other day. I told him I couldn't get over how beautiful my foal was...and he said he thought she was really ugly b/c her ears were too big. I thought he was kidding me, but he completely wasn't. He said the rest of her might be just fine, but all he saw when he looked at her were her mule ears. I was aghast. We love her ears. I think it's one of her best features.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Friday camp photos

These aren't by any means all the photos, but these are the ones I thought was best. When the girls are on the ground, they are playing the Circle Game. Sometimes it went well and sometimes it didn't. Mostly, I had fun taking pictures.

Then they had fun in the round pen, and then they rode bareback in the afternoon. I missed a ton of photos in between b/c I was supposed to go see clients, who then stood me up without a phone call, for the 2nd week in a row. I have called that agency and said I can't see that client's 30 miles away for them to just not be there when they are supposed to be. I'm trying to consolidate to closer, and I missed a great day with my daughter.

The palomino my daughter is riding is named Doc. He was graciously loaned by a boarder of Jennifer's who is injured. I'm so grateful to her. Maggie just fell in love with him. He's so much like Deli in personality. They got along so well.

My next new Truck?

My mechanic knows that I have been looking for a 3/4 ton pickup to tow my trailer and he found this little jewel of a suburban which will actually fit the bill better. Maggie and I can camp in it and it's got a bigger engine for pulling my bigger trailer. It will mean no camper shell or gooseneck for awhile, but I wasn't going to afford that anyway. It shouldn't cost me much more than what I can sell my truck for and it's pretty to boot. Yes, it will get terrible gas mileage, but since I will only drive it for doing "truckey" things that won't be too bad.
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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Maggie swimming with Doc

Maggie has been attending camp in Aledo this week at Ironstar Farm. She has had so much fun. I heard Monday that they were going to have a surprise today, but since it was a surprise I didn't know about it ahead of time. Maggie has grown to really like all the Parelli games and is now wanting to get her Parelli level 1 certificate. I have never been a huge fan of Parelli, but I admit that his followers really seem to enjoy him, so I'm willing to give it a try.

Camp is keeping her busy every day and she is active. The other thing keeping us all active is the new Wii. I have lost 1.8 pounds since Sunday (could be normal fluctuation, so we'll see) and Maggie has lost 1 pound. Tomorrow am we're going to get up and do 15 minutes on the Wii and the treadmill and then switch so we get 30 minutes of exercise in first thing in the am. My abs and side muscles are so sore. One of the games at which I really stink is a hoola hoop game...I am just terrible. I can only spin about 30 times before I lose the hoops and they crash. Peter is currently the king at 303 spins. The other game that I keep practicing is a game where you have to keep good balance while a team of soccer players kicks balls at you. You have to head the balls and dodge the shoes and panda heads. You lose a point for every shoe that hits you and lose 3 points for every panda head. You gain a point for every ball you butt. It's hard b/c the panda heads look a lot like the balls as they come flying toward you. I've been surprised how little control I have over parts of my balance. I also am very sore in many of my deep muscles. There are also aerobic games and strength and yoga games. It's really so much fun. My goal is to log 30 minutes every day.

Maggie is looking forward to going to see my mom next week. She is going to go to Silver Dollar City and a couple water parks...I guess that means that Peter and I get the Wii all to ourselves.
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Tuesday, June 10, 2008

New Job/no horses/fun Wii

I'm not sure what order to go in here, so I'll just start rambling...starting from the most recent to the oldest...This is like in a TV show when they show you a teaser and then say "24 hours earlier" only backwards.

Tonight we went back to the pub and played Irish music. I discovered that I could actually play between 30-50% of the notes if I closed my eyes and didn't try to pretend that I could read the notes off the page. Bless my piano teachers' hearts...I just never learned to play well by ear. But, a good time was had by all. I think we'll go back next week. Tuesday night IS date night for us.

Today I didn't get to check on my horses, but Cat and Maggie took care of them. I won't get out there tomorrow till late in the evening either. Work all day and then massages after.

Speaking of work...I love my new job. It's not too hard, the people are nice and I like being able to work in a slower paced, laid back atmosphere. One of my residents has now challenged me to find some songs I Never heard of before...downloading them now while I blog. Tomorrow I'm not sure what we'll do, but hopefully they will be well entertained. I am having to shift gears from kids to adults, but it keeps me going.

The Wii is just too cool. I got up this am and worked out for 20 minutes doing strength, balance and aerobic training. It weighs me and gives me a fitness test. I was a 46 for my Wii age the first time I did it. I think it was b/c I didn't really get the instructions. Today I was a 31, which means I got 15 years younger in just a day. I am amazed how it tracks my balance...I have always thought I was pretty balanced. People tell me I am balanced in the saddle all the time, but it's just not true. I stand on my right foot and I put my weight too far back. When Wii says that I am balanced I feel like I am leaning forward. I keep trying to play this game where you butt soccer balls with your head....I end up getting socked in the head with shoes and panda bears. It's really hard. It's supposed to work core muscles. I love it b/c if i skip a day (i missed yesterday) it scolds you.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Slideshow of the Great Chase and an Explanation

I had lots of emails today of people worrying about my horses and about Fiera. I want to say thanks to everyone who offered me help and advice on my fence and on my situation. I wanted to post some other photos and make sure that all the folks who were concerned don't need to be worried. I guess I will need to tell the whole story.

First, I need to assure everyone that the fence is really much better than it appears in the photos. There is a solid exterior fence. One side is loose, nasty barbed wire. One side is a pipe and cord fence, and two sides is cattle fencing with barbed wire at the top. The back has other horses, but the two long sides have foliage as well as fencing. There have been horses successfully kept in this field for a long time. No one ever did much to make it safe, but I didn't like the fence, so I wired the inside with poly strand hot wire. I have a strong fence charger and it regularly hits 4.5 or higher (4000+ volts) I had cross fenced originally so that Deli and Fiera would have their own space, but they had outgrown their pen.

On Sunday, it was time to put them all out together. Originally my plan was to leave up the paddock fence so that I could bring in Deli and Fiera in for feeding with less hassle, but it didn't work out. Deli headed out to the big field without Fiera right behind her and Fiera, who isn't afraid of the other horses, ended up with Merlin between her and her mother. In the slide show posted, the first photo (the one I originally posted that I found to be such a neat photo never mind the content) Merlin has his ears back, not b/c he's feeling evil toward the foal, but b/c Deli is coming up on his rear. This moment took place so quickly and then they made a lap around the field, where Fiera blasted through the poly wire which broke as it was supposed to.

While the situation with Merlin and Deli was more exciting than I wanted it to be, it wasn't as dangerous as the photo made it look. I Just loved the photo I had up on Sunday. I have a new camera and it took such a lovely picture. It did look really vicious, but I wouldn't have been snapping photos if I had been worried about the proceedings.

Tonight they are all fine together. The paddock fence is down and they have split up into groups. Freeley watches out over Fiera the most, but Liberty seems to be able to get closest before mom has a cow. Today I took Freeley out for a ride and they seemed to be a little weirded out without their leader. I wish I'd had a separate place to put them today only b/c they run a little more when their leader is gone. It has made me wonder if it will be more stressful on Sat. when Maggie, Jena and I go riding and the only two left are Merlin and Deli and thinks I will build a new paddock to keep Merlin in just to be safe.

I have had foals before and they all lived in the herd setting. I never had the means to separate my mares and foals for more than a few weeks and I felt like this was better for my herd. I don't know how most breeders do it. I wish that I could split up the field and put the two mares and the foal together, but honestly, Dixie wants that baby bad and bugs Deli...Deli hates Dixie and might hurt her. As a group they are all doing just great. I worry constantly about whether or not I'm doing the right thing. I just have to hope and pray that the decisions I have made for the herd are the best ones.

Funny story that happened before I was leaving. Fiera was laying down sleeping and Liberty wandered over. Deli started urging her to get up and she didn't want to. I could almost hear her say: Naw, mom, I'm comfy, life's cool, chill out...So she nudged her and nipped her on the butt. Fiera didn't budge...not until Deli bit her soundly on the ear. Then Fiera hopped up and trotted off. Liberty trotted after them, and they all went to the hay bale to eat.

I love this foal. She is just everything I have ever wanted in a foal. She's bold and friendly (now) and put together so well. I would hate it if anything happened to her, but I also know that I can't wrap her in bubble wrap and set her aside till she grows up. She has a good mom who protects her in the herd and they will all be fine! If anything happens I will be so miserable, but I don't know anyway to keep the little one completely safe unless I keep her totally alone. The other horses will teach her to be a better horse. They have room to run and get away from each other. I think it's probably better than any other situation I have had my foals in from the past.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Happy Family

I went back to check on the ponies tonight and all was well. Deli was in the field hanging out with Liberty, who she lets stay close. Freeley was with Dixie...Merlin seems to have been ostarisized and was alone in a corner of the field by himself. Deli is taking good care of her charge. Fiera is staying close to mom. I played with her for a long time tonight. She has gotten to be so friendly in the last week. She lets me halter her, though leading is tricky...she lets me pick up all her legs. I can scratch her anywhere, though she does get touchy if I scratch her butt in certain places. She's exploring everything with her mouth...including my skin (ouch!) I'm going to see how they do in the next day or so, but Cat and I talked about putting up another small pen for just Merlin if we have to. I hate to do that. I would like them all to have space to stretch out instead. One of my friends emailed me nervous about my fence...I'm incredibly nervous about them all the time...I think no matter how I kept them I would worry constantly about them. I don't know how breeders do this. I've been made crazy worrying about my baby.

Merlin Chases Baby

In one of my most terrified moments of new horse motherhood, I got a photo of Merlin, the draft cross who belongs to my friend Cat, chasing Fiera across the field. How did this happen, you might ask? Well, Fiera is 3 weeks old today and has begun to outgrow the confines of her little paddock with her mom. I have tried several combinations of the whole herd over the last week and today seemed to be a good day to give them a chance to mingle. They have been getting along over the fence just fine and it jus seemed like they were ready...well, I was wrong!

The story ended fine. I had to tear down the entire fence and let them out but now they can't run into it. When I left at 2:30 they were all fine together. I just thought this was a great camera shot and wanted to share it.

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We got a Wii

The subject line says it all. I really wanted Wii fit so we hd buy a Wii to go with it. Fun!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Riding at southlake

We rode today at the lake and had such a blast. Liberty was being a bit of a toot, wanting to go faster but not able to break out of the group to get around. We had a few nice trotting/cantering stretches but I didn't feel like those around me had enough control so I didn't want to risk it so we mostly took it easy. Maggie was there too and I really noticed how his stress level increases with more more horses. All that walking wore me out. The highlight of the day was all the opportunity to mount and dismount which went well! We also went swimming in the lake and that was great fun. I saw a lot of progress in his obstacle work and hill work. He went into deep water several times. He's questioning less, trusting more. And when it was all over he was still my best little buddy in the field.

Fiera is getting really big. We have done some lead line training and she gets sweeter every day. I am relieved. I was worried for awhile that she wouldn't be friendly.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

No more LIttle Toot

Maggie says our baby is getting to be too sweet to call Little Toot anymore. She should be called Tout Suite...or is that Toot Sweet (like the sweets in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang) We haven't turned her paperwork in...I suppose the name Fiera might not stick, though I really like it. I have been calling her Tootie...which makes me think of the Facts of Life. The last two days have shown a lot of progress. Yesterday I put a halter on her and today she walked right up to Maggie to be handled. This is good, good news!

I start working at my new job for Lifetime Wellness tomorrow. I'm a little nervous, but I think it will be fun!

I had a riding lesson today with an instructor who does Parelli work and dressage. We have been working on managing Liberty's emotions in new situations. Today we started him on lateral work, haunches in, shoulder in, leg yielding. It was hard work, but alot of fun. I got to have lunch at The Rock House again...she promises me that there will be a website soon so I can link to it!.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Playing Catch Up

It's been a busy week. I have so much I want to write about, but some of it just isn't worth writing here and some of it is still swirling around my head. I am trying to sort out what I am responsible for and how much of what I am feeling is really not about me at all, but about the behavior and actions of others. Since I want to be fair, I am trying to examine it from all angles, while doing the thing I do often..which is cave in just to get along.

I finally feel like I am getting healthy again and feeling more like my old self. Maggie and I went to the lake and rode yesterday and that was great. Liberty took me swimming (bad boy!) but it was really funny and the water felt really good. Maggie wanted to go back again tonight, but it didn't work out to do so.

I finished a book called The Abstinence Teacher, which was good, but odd...want to blog about that at more length later.

Played with Fiera, who is now renamed Little Toot or Tootie...she's naughty naughty.

Heading to bed...I'm in a bad place tonight. Mourning some things I can't change, trying to accept that life may not be as I want it to be and trying to embrace what it really is.