Saturday, January 30, 2010

A Tribute to Liberty

My friend Karen, and breeder of Liberty, my awesome horse wrote the below and I wanted to share it. Without her stallion/mare "accident" he wouldn't exist.

A Tribute to Alice and Liberty

Isn't it interesting how "mistakes" turn out? You see, Liberty is the
product of two breeds that one would logically not think of mixing. The two
breeds are total opposites in their gaits. The Paso Fino is bred to have a
short quick stride and the Arab flows in long, ground covering strides.
However, both breeds are similar in their temperament. They both possess
heart, stamina.and brio. They will go and go for you. They are quick and

Liberty's sire was a beautiful, bold Paso Fino. He had the smoothest gait.
It was so thrilling to ride him and have his luxurious mane, that was at
least a yard long, whip along beside you. He was not afraid of anything on
the trail. Rabbits could jump out or birds could fly up and he would be as
steady as can be.You could take him anywhere and away from other riders. He
was not dependent upon any other horse. He was brave on the trail and
successful in the show ring. He would have been great at distance competition.
Unfortunately, he died as a result of a tragic accident at only 7 years
of age.

Liberty's mother is an elegant, demure, Arabian of Polish lines. She was
used primarily as a brood mare and was not ridden in competition. However,
the Polish horses are known for their athletic abilities and devotion.

Liberty was one of the most beautiful colts I had produced.He was so
balanced and fluid. He was striking in his black and white coloring. Just ask
Alice to see his baby pictures! He inherited boldness, integrity, and
quickness from his sire. From his mother, intelligence and refined beauty.
From both-heart, stamina and great feet. I now think that the two breeds
combined to make a great endurance horse!

Liberty was definitely not a finished horse when Alice bought him. He had
been raised well and taken care of. He understood the saddle and blanket,
tied and loaded well, and understood the longe. However, he had been
mounted only a few times, and had never been off the farm. But, he was mature
and ready to go under serious training.

Alice took this very green horse and worked hard at training him. She
worked through several training issues with courage and tenacity. In addition,
she was not afraid to reach out to the community to ask for advice. It
is no surprise that she has reached this level of success. Now, as Liberty
and Alice embark on their next level, (50 milers) I am sure that we will all
hear about many more accomplishments.

I salute Alice and her award for Liberty as the #1 Half Arab of 2009.


Karen Haile
Rancho del Rayo

Karen has great horses and she has been reducing her herd some...anyone who reads this...I can probably get you guys in touch with her. She has some beautiful animals.

Friday, January 29, 2010

The year of the YMCA

I joined the Y 2 years ago and have hardly used it. I don't really like the machines and would rather walk outside. I love water aerobics and swimming but the Y with the pool is across town and not as easy to access as often as I would like. However, now that I have discovered Zumba and now am discovering other classes, I am excited about the Ymca again. Class tonight was huge and I loved my work out. I plan to make pilates tomorrow morning. I feel really good to be working out and focusing on exercise.

I found out tonight that Liberty is the nation's top 1/2 Arab for Natrc. I am so proud of him. I think I cried for 10 minutes when I saw the note in my facebook box. I had no idea. I keep reading it not quite sure it's true :-)

Still trying to decide about the fifty versus 25. I am starting to think 25 and the 50 just because it's a new venue but I kept keep from wondering if I am selling us short.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Nice ride until the cactus

Cactus hurts! Yes, I realize that is a huge newsflash, but it's one I share freely. Yesterday, while having a really nice ride with a friend, Liberty spooked huge at something (problem a wild turkey or a deer) and left me hanging in the air just above a huge prickly pear. Of course, since gravity is ever present, I went straight down into the cactus and the fire ants next to it. I wasn't hurt, and got up quickly. Liberty being the good boy he is did not run away. (Funny how he runs away in the pasture as a game before I ride him, but seems to know leaving me after I have fallen off is just wrong) Peter helped me to pick out the prickles I couldn't reach, but I have some embedded still as I have little welts where the prickles will just have to fester out. Oh was a nice ride anyway. I got back on and rode off. Funny how I'm not scared of him and really don't worry about him spooking, even though he does. I think I just trust him.

The bad news is that I now missed two Zumba Classes. I'm bummed, but I could not zumba being sore from falling off and still having prickles.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Weigh In

I maintained this week. I have only lost a total of 20.5 now. I was at 24 pounds, but then gained weight back over the holidays. I have lost some of that, but not any in the last 2 weeks. I know some of it was going to San Antonio and some other cheating, but I'm recommitting myself to ditching at least another 10 pounds before the end of February.

I did another Zumba class tonight. I didn't enjoy this class as much as I did the first one. It was a different instructor, and was actually a little easier, but I found that the faster pace not as interesting. There is another one at 7pm tomorrow at the same place that I went before and I hope to make it over there in time after seeing clients.

I get to ride with Alanna tomorrow. The weather is supposed to turn south the next day, so I will be grateful for the ride.

My 50 mile ride may be in danger. Max, my friend Eric's horse, is sick and he doesn't think his mare is in good enough shape. He doesn't want to drive from MO to TX for 25 miles and I can't blame him. Doing a 50 alone sounds pretty dull to me...will give it some thought.

Saturday, January 23, 2010


I may have to face that popcorn is my waterloo. I need to get it out of the house where I can't make it when I think I am hungry. I need to limit my popcorn intake to, at the most, the few times I go to the movies. Far better, I should just decide that popcorn for me is doughnuts or chocolate to others. I love dessrt and I eat it, but I have deceivedmyself about my popcorn intake for far too long. People say airpop it...blech! I would sooner not eat it at all as eat it in 'diet' form. I have already been thinking I should eat it only once per week at most but I think perhaps it should go on my never list. Popcorn is not on plan!

Good news is that I did an hour of exercise today...but was up 3 pounds from yesterday. I need to go back down 3 pounds before weighing in on Monday.

Since the holidays have not been 100% and I don't know why.

Today I almost had a serious accident at my field. Fiera had gotten tangled in some wire I had been in the process of eradicating. She had it wrapped around all four legs, her body and her neck. She was still connected to the fence. She was very quiet and didn't move while we freed her. I was very proud of her. She has a good brain. I finished cleaning what I thought was harmless wire.

Liberty was very naughty today. He waited for me to put hands on him and then took off running. Maggie chased him down on Dixie, not giving him a break until he was in the round pen. He finally went in because I fed Fiera and he couldn't stand not take it from her. Then he got to work more, but it was 30 minutes before I could catch him. Don't know what it was all about because he worked perfectly, faced me, played all the games but was jumpy to touch and very twitchy. It was like he was spooked though who knows why.

Tomorrow, grasslands.

Friday, January 22, 2010


I went to a class called Zumba tonight. It's a Latin fusion dance/aerobic class. It was a great workout and tons of fun! I've already looked at the YMCA schedule to find out when I can go again! The steps were hard, but I found that I was pretty good at it in spite of my normal, non-dancing ways!

Today wasn't a good food/eating day, so I thought extra exercise was called for. Supposedly zumba burns about 600 calories in an hour, so I figure it was worth it.

The hour went by really fast.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Fiera under saddle

Today I decided to put a saddle on Fiera. I did some round pen work with her and then put Maggie's English saddle on her. She took it completely in stride. She bucked a tiny bit at the canter but I think it was more willful disobedience than distress. Then I bridled and unbridled her a few times...also no big deal. She is sooo smart.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Medifast stalling out

My jump start after my fun weekend has been tricky today. It was not awful in that I didn't have any dessert, but I did eat two meals instead of 1 and I only had 3 (I may still have one more) of my meals today. I'm finding that the longer I do this, the harder it is to for me to only eat the foods on the plan. I'm still doing a reasonable job, but I miss potatoes on occasion and I miss pasta. Today I did pass up dessert and I ate egg beaters instead of real eggs, so that's good. I am making better choices than before, but I am stuck at 210 and it's not budging. When I try to get back to eating just my medifast food, I find myself hungry all the time. I'm wondering if my body is trying to stay stuck here. I have to start exercising more.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Our trip to San Antonio

Currently Peter is above me on the top bunk sleeping. I dozed a bit but found my mind too restless to sleep. I don't nap well anyway, so I figured I would blog about the trip while it was fresh in my mind.

Friday night we hung out in the bar and met 2 sets of people from Montana. Peter wandered around taking photos of the gorgeous chandeliers at St. Anthony's. We found out that the hall was originally called Peacock Alley because after eating in the formal dining area with their wives, the men would go to that part of the hotel to stru their stuff and smoke and drink while the women went elsewhere. The chandeliers were purchased for a relatively small amount of money originally but are currently appraised at 1/4 million each.

Saturday we slept until 9am and then had breakfast at Blanca's cafe. I went traditional and had a regular egg and bacon breakfast but Peter had a dish called chilaquiles. He made the better choice! We should have shared this dish b/c it was huge...and spicy.

From there we began to walk. We visited the Alamo and we took a carriage ride around the Alamo. The carriage driver told us about the haunted hotels and some other interesting Landmarks. I got to pet a horse and learn more about driving.

From there, Peter and I went to the Menger hotel, which is supposed to be haunted. It had a beautiful lobby and some neat shops. The bar attached was where Teddy Roosevelt recruited the rough riders.

We took a cabout to a place that had been recommended called The Liberty Bar. It's a very crooked building that had an interesting menu,but we ended up next door, eating at a place called The Josephine Cafe. There, we had a 7 oz, peppered & bacon wrapped filet for $12.95. At Liberty Bar, the same food was over twice as much. It was really tasty!

By this time it was four o'clock and Peter was tired. I had slept great on Friday night, but Peter not so much so we lounged and dozed & watched a little tv. I could have really slept but he was restless and our room was cold as the heater had quit working.

So, at 6pm we headed down to the bar again. We hung out talking to a group of folks until 10 and watching football. John, the bar tender was always up to make a new beverage and one of the guys bought everyone a round, I think, b/c he was enjoying the company so much that he wanted us to say. Rick, the policeman from Saledo, was so entertaining that I am still laughing today. He and his wife, a flutist, said they had come to San Antonio, looking for a chandelier for their chapel. He joked a lot about pulling off a 3am heist of one in Peacock Alley. Later, when he revealed he was a policeman, Peter commented that he had been gathering suspects to pin the theft on. At some point a joke got started that he was related to wyatt earp and things spiraled from there. Aaron, the young man from California continued to add fuel to the joke fire.

It was such a fun night we hated to have to go to bed. However, the train pulled out at 7am, so we made it an early night. We were almost asleep when a group of teens at the hotel for a beta club conference came in loudly and woke us up. I could not believe how loud they were. I almost got up and said something to them, but I wasn't sure it would matter. I finally really got to sleep about 2am. Peter slept great though and even though he is currently snoring away, seems to be fairly rested.

We'll be home by 2pm today. It will be good to be back. I had a great time getting away from home.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

An evening in the bar

I realize many people go to bars often, but I am not one of the. They are expensive and loud and smokey. That was not the case with the St. Anthony's bar. We spent the evening with Rick, a police captain from Saledo, his wife, Denise, who is a flutist. Rick quickly became the great grandson of Wyatt Earp, which led to muany jokes. There was John, an architecture professor, who lives close by but likes to spend the night in a hotel occasionally. There was Aaron, who was attending a leadership conference. He was from Ca and liked to drink Irish wiskey. Then there was Nicole, a dance teacher from Beaumont. I also met a lasy from Duncanville who was looking for a music therapist for her son and was ashtonished to find one at the bar.

We didn't drink too much, but we had a great time tryung out some new cocktails. These included the green Iguana, which was midori, tequila and sweet & sour. I had a white russian made with raspberry vodka. Peter had a suntan lotion which was amaretto, malibu and cream. I had a martini...the bar tender John was just the best.

Anyway, tomorrow we head back on the train. It's been fun.

Friday, January 15, 2010

I am leaving on a train

Peter has always wanted to take a train trip. This weekend he made reservations for us ro take a trip to San Antonio via train, complete sleeper car and everything. The trip is 7 hours and, while we have our phones, and ipods for music to listen to, the rest of our electronic media is staying home. Of course Peter is taking his camera to take pictures!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Reflecting on the diet journey

Tonight it's going to get cold. They say it will be colder than it's been in Texas in 13 years...I am not ready.

Not to talk about this twice in one day, but it's on my mind...and that is what blogs are for.

I weighed in today and I gained four pounds. I don't really feel all that bad about the pounds as I was actually up by 3 more last week and I have been dropping steadily each day per the wii fit. I'm exercising and eating better than I was eating previously when I gained 30 pounds last year (from March till September) so overall, I can't be too upset with myself.

I'm finding that I dislike the very diet industry that is helping me. I'm getting over the attitude b/c they are providing me valuable tools and I'm losing weight, but I'm finding that I resent not being able to eat any fruit (per the medifast plan) and I'm missing the occasional potato. I really want to get the weight off, so I'm going to stick with it b/c I know it works, but I do find myself looking longingly at plates of pasta and produce and wishing for some. I don't even really miss dessert when I don't eat it. But I do miss popcorn. Of course, all this missing is good for me b/c these are things I was eating that was wrecking my health and making me gain resenting the diet plan is not very productive. I was reminded again today that it's one day at a time, one meal at a time, one choice at a time.

Last night we watched the Good Eats special: Live and Let Diet. Alton Brown showed videos of when he was 50 pounds heavier and talked about the plan he developed for himself to lose 50 pounds in 9 months...a feat which I found to be impressive.

He works off four lists which I will copy below. He starts each day with a smoothie for breakfast. I hope to use these lists as I finish medifast and continue onto maintenance...only I suspect I will continue to lose even while on Medifast maintenance.

- Fruits
- Whole Grains - Leafy Greens - Nuts - Carrots - Green Tea

3 times a week

- Oily Fish
- Yogurt
- Broccoli
- Sweet Potato
- Avocado

Once a week

- Red meat
- Pasta
- Dessert
- Alcohol


- Fast Food
- Soda
- Processed meals/frozen dinners
- Canned soup
- "Diet" anything

Eat breakfast every day, no exceptions

Medifast Weigh in/music therapy rant

I will weigh in today at 230pm. I know that I will have a gain, but I have accepted it. I'm almost back down to where I was pre-holidays according to my wii fit. I can't catch that up by I decided I would just have a fresh mind set and recommit as of today. I will probably be up 3-4 pounds.

I had a good start today. I made some medifast eggs and I put some of my veggie allotment for the day in it and that filled me up nicely. I'm currently drinking a chai latte. I have to do a group in 45 minutes and then I will weigh in. This week, I'm planning to get one thing that is "food" but the rest is going to be shakes and hot drinks. I seem to be better at this when I don't eat. The act of eating seems to be more of a trigger. Plus, the shakes have fewer calories, so I hope to jump start things again.

It was so great not to go to the nursing home the last couple days. Maggie stayed in her room yesterday and I made no real attempt to accomplish anything. I watched a little TV...found a new show on History channel called "life after people" which I found really interesting. I went to the store, I fed the horses, I did counted cross stitch. I stayed up way too late (which resulted in sleeping extra late this am) Peter watched TV with us which was nice. He sorted photos on his laptop and hug out with me and Maggie.

I found out that Lifetime Wellness, my employer, never discussed the music therapy program ending with the facility, Emerald Hills. I guess my boss thought she would have 30 days to sugar coat things for them, promising them bigger and better things, or begging off due to lack of funds. My understanding is that there are no more music therapists left, save one, besides me and so they decided to discontinue the entire program. It's a shame because the residents will suffer and they really benefited from the services...but...oh well. I find it somewhat amusing that I left the way I did and put her in a bind. The reason that they don't have music therapists is that they don't want to pay them.

Today hasn't been much better in the productivity department. I did the dishes and sorted some laundry, but I didn't even wake up till 9:30. I woke up...made breakfast and watched my TNT rerun of ER. They are to the episodes I never watched so I'm enjoying them immensely. Today's episode starred Ray Liotta as a dying man and was very interesting.

I'm finding that I am probably sewing and watching TV far too much though...

Last night (or rather this am) I had the weirdest dream. First I dreamed that I had been kidnapped and I was trying to call Stotlemeyer and Monk to come save me. Then I dreamed I was having a baby, breech and one of the doctors from ER was trying to pull the baby out feet first. I kept telling them I needed a C section, but no one would listen...more and more people just kept coming to watch and observe. That was the dream I was having when I was waking up this am and I just couldn't get away from it. At one point in the dream they agreed I needed the Csection, but they were going to make me walk to the OR. Crazy!

Monday, January 4, 2010




The results are in..... the points are tallied..... verifications made....AND THE WINNERS ARE:


2009 NCTHA





All Around Performance Champion

Maggie Steinke &

Gorgeous Dixie


All Around Performance Reserve Champion

Alice Yovich &



All Around Performance Third Place

Cheryl Edmondson &

Ojala Ariel Moon


All Around Performance Fourth Place

Elaine Swiss &

EW Zarabella


All Around Performance

Fifth Place

Miriam Rieck &

Misty Blue Moon


All Around Performance Sixth Place

Betsy Zimmerman &

NKR April's Jewel








High Mileage Champion

Cheryl Edmondson &

Ojala Ariel Moon


High Mileage Reserve Champion

Alice Yovich &



High Mileage Third Place

Maggie Steinke &

Gorgeous Dixie


High Mileage Fourth Place

Miriam Rieck &

Misty Blue Moon


High Mileage Fifth Place

Elaine Swiss &

EW Zarabella


High Mileage Sixth Place

Betsy Zimmerman &

NKR April's Jewel



* 250 mile chevron

* 500 mile chevron

* 750 mile chevron

* 1000 mile chevron



Happy trails, fair winds & safe anchorages,
Bev & JD

Friday, January 1, 2010

New Year thoughts

I wanted to have happy New Year thoughts...but my day began with services charges on my savings accounts to the order of $12...when they paid me a whole $.12 interest for the quarter. I can't figure out why I have these services excessive withdrawals that I can see. The only thing I can think of is that the balances are below $1000, though that's never been a service charge issue before. Of course, I can't find out today b/c it's a holiday, so I have to remember to hang on to my outrage through tomorrow. If I find out that they won't allow me to have a basic savings account without service charges, emigrant direct bank will have more of my money in the future I guess. I'm so irritated with the bank!

My other source of irritation comes from my job status in the new year. My contracts have been picking up with DSSW, but I received an email from the head of my Lifetime Wellness division late yesterday (no doubt right before she left for the year so she wouldn't actually have to speak with me) letting me know that music therapy was being discontinued as of Jan 31, 2010 at my facility. They have been hard to get along with for about 6 weeks now. My direct supervisor kept showing up whenever I was in the building and then pulling me aside to criticize my previously good work with the residents. She first picked on one thing, which I was doing well, then something else, and then got upset b/c one of us (me) had gotten on facebook at work. Funny part about that was that I was actually copying activity suggestions from a fellow music therapist. Then she started saying I wasn't engaging the entire group of residents from the lowest functioning, almost comatose, to the higher functioning, almost normal, senior. Of course, during the course of the criticism I had anywhere from 30-44 residents in a group...near half the facility, so I figure I wasn't doing that badly. And the residents I saw privately in their room continued to appreciate me as did the nurses and aids I worked with. So, I honestly don't' feel like it had anything to do with me. If it had, then all the efforts I made to do what they were asking for would have been followed up on...which they weren't.

I have new contracts for the new year which pay better anyway, so I that is something to be very happy about!

Today Dee and her kids are coming over, so I need to get off the couch and clean a bit. I will feed at 3:00 and then they will come over afterward. We'll play games which will be lots of fun.