Friday, December 30, 2016

Oops I kind of lost my mind

I have a blog post that I started on something called redefining Christmas. I have not had the time to sit down and write the whole thing yet but was thinking about it today I got kind of angry about some things that have been happening in my life.  I already know that one of my friends has been having a similar situation and it is painful. The situation is a lack of Old Friends.

I will try not to over hash this because I did cover some of this in my post cause I woke up angry. However I'm in a different place today. When I woke up angry I felt helpless. Today I just feel kinda finished. I have been reaching out to the same people over and over again. These people were very close to me at one time and no they are not. I assume that they feel like I did something to cause the problem. And I am not playing it isn't here. I do know of a few things that I have done to upset people. However, I only know because somebody else told me. The people involved never sat down with me and have a conversation so that any of these issues to be resolved. This leads me to believe that they don't want to be friends. I get it it's been almost a year. I have to let it go. But it's hard.

When I have friends I give them everything. Clearly I am not perfect and I make mistakes. I am a pretty good secret-keeper but occasionally I guess I slip like everyone else. I have apologized to the people I know to apologize to. Sometimes I don't apologize because I don't think anything wrong. But I still think you can be friends when you disagree. You just at least have to have a conversation.

When I try repeatedly to text or call and the person never called me back or text me back what am I supposed to think? I am led to believe that you do not want to have a relationship with me. And I am so tired of pretending that so-and-so is just busy or they have a lot going on or maybe they just needed to change their life. The fact is you don't value spending time with me or you would call me back. When I asked you to lunch and you can't go and then never make another invitation that tells me you don't want to spend time with me. I get it. Finally I get it. In many ways I would find it easier just to have this conversation out in the open. Our lives have changed we are different people I no longer wish to hang out. At least I would have the closure of knowing that is truly what's happening.

There was a group of us that used to be very close. We spent time together and grow together and talk together and hang out on Facebook. That group is gone. Partly because our lives have changed. Partly because I made changes recommended to me by these friends and now they no longer wish to hang out. I don't understand that part. These people told me for years to do something to change my life and when I did we cease to be friends.

Perhaps I did more changing  than I think I did.  I do think that when I quit being weak and controlled that I became a stronger person so perhaps I was kicked out of the herd because I'm not the person I used to be. For house I don't really want to know why we're not friends anymore. Sometimes it is better not to know even though I think I want to know.

I have written letters trying to fix things and it didn't work. I have had endless Facebook conversations trying to fix things and that didn't work. I have tried to have phone calls but don't get called back and no one answers my calls. When it's more than one person I have to admit that it has to be something from within me. However I don't think it's always me. I feel like I'm in high school again and I am no longer the cool kid. It is a crappy way to feel.

So what do I do about it? I am venting and I am blogging. I'm still trying to make right what can be made right but I am done feeling like I am responsible for holding up these relationships all by myself. I agree that sometimes we get busy and don't make time for people however you don't use that excuse for months and months. Or at least that excuse doesn't hold water for up to a year. I have moved physically and spiritually. My life is ever-changing too and it is time to move forward and embrace the new. I will still have times where I hurt and grieve I'm sure. Hopefully through moving forward Bridges will not be burned and friendships can be maintain at least superficially. Someday things may come full circle. 

Monday, December 26, 2016

Good ride today

Except for the fact that I have just rolled my ankle and will be hurting for the next few days, I had great rides today.

First I rode Joe Bob and it went really well. He and I did slow, steady circles and walked and gaited. He was really awesome.  He's less nervous about the dogs, but still bothered me.

Then I rode Hermoso in the round pen for just a little while. The saddle I was trying wasn't good for him, so I got off pretty quick but he was a good boy.  We did a lot of ground work and he joined up super nice.  he followed me everywhere even though the herd had gone off and left him.

Then I worked with Duke. He is a weird horse. He won't move around the round pen. He won't turn to face me. He wants nothing from me. He won't let me pet him. He wants food but nothing else. He turns his butt as if to tell me he could kick me, but he never offers to kick. He won't turn toward me. He has no desire to be part of a team.  I don't know how to train him.

Friday, December 23, 2016

First ride on Joe Bob--reprint from The Adventures of Joe Bob. (and an addendum)

Today was our first outing together. It was not as Idyllic as either of us would have liked.  We started out OK, heading over toward Mike's sister's house. We picked up a dog there, a border collie who is really into chasing horse tails. I was able to keep her in front of us, but either my nerves or his got the better of us both and we ended up getting really short and nervous.  He got impatient waiting on me while I talked to my brother in law and his wife, but then we went on. Somewhere in the next 5 minutes he got really agitated and I had to dismount to fix his curb chain which was way too tight. I was riding him in the wonder bit as I have been advise, but may try to find my snaffle for the next ride.  I had to get back to my brother in law's house to borrow a footstool so I could remount. I'm thinking I need a footstool everywhere I go where I might dismount and need to remount. Then he wouldn't stand by the mounting block so we went round and round, back and forth and generally had him a sweat just to remount. He finally stopped in front of the block on the off side, and I went for it.
In the meantime, Mike had walked down the drive way and he seemed really nervous about all the dogs and Mike in the distance. He was also hearing his herd whinny and I'm sure he wanted to be barn sour, but he is so well trained that he didn't "do" anything bad.  A few times we walked sideways down the road, but as soon as I moved his butt over and we turned around to face away from home and relax he was fine. Then we hit a stretch where he was almost perfect...then he heard the herd again and got a little squirrely.

All 4 feet stayed on the ground at all times.  He just got quick and agitated and my own fears of being run off with came into play. I suspect they are dumb b/c every time I whoaed him or moved his hip he immediately disengaged and stopped...good boy Joe Bob. He hasn't been ridden in quite some time, so I feel pretty good about the way things went. I never felt unsafe and I felt like he was trying really hard all the time to do what I asked. We did some obstacle work which went pretty well too. Then I dismounted and walked back down the road to Mike and then we came home together.  I jogged him in hand which went great until I rolled my right ankle on a rock and went down on my left knee.  Joe Bob stopped and looked at me like I was a fool and that I should get up b/c I was embarrassing him in front of the other horses. He stood perfectly still.  He let me lean on him to get back up. Good Joe Bob.

When I took off his tack I saw that my saddle left smooth hair but there were not even sweat marks so the specialized I have always had for Liberty may not be wide enough. Or I may not have ridden him long enough to make him sweat under that part of the saddle.  I don't know him well enough to know if he acts badly if he's uncomfortable or if he just keeps plugging along.  I have a couple other saddles to try so I can find out later on if another one fits better.  I may also try Sherman's walking horse bit or a couple different snaffles I have.

In reflection it could be that I'm used to my little bitty horses and I just need to get used to how he moves. My walkers always needed a pretty snug rein, Joe Bob may need a looser one. I need to experiment.

My knee turned out to be a bloody mess :-(

I'm still thinking every time I ride a new horse...why aren't they as good as Liberty. This isn't fair of course, b/c Liberty does plenty of not good stuff and I always joke and say "Liberty wasn't always Liberty" Meaning, of course, that he had to be trained and grow into himself.  However, Joe has so much personality it's going to be a fun journey.

Tomorrow if it's not raining I'm going to ride Vandy. I have a bridle for him to put his bit on...he is more the shape and size of Liberty and I may end up just using his Hackamore. IT's my plan to get him a teal bridle from Trail Blazer's tack with a breast collar to match b/c he is so much smaller through the chest than even Liberty. I was able to make Liberty's breast collar fit Joe Bob, but I had to adjust it so much that isn't pleasing either, so Joe will also need his own breast collar. I like to have a set of tack for each horse when possible. Otherwise Liberty, Hermoso and Vandy will end up wearing a pink breast collar b/c they are small and so is it...with different colored head stalls and nothing will match. That pink head stall is so tiny it only ever fit Fiera and Ollie and I was shocked it fit Fiera.  Of course, all this stuff costs money so for now I'll just acquire pieces slowly. 

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Joe Bob



Joe Bob is new to our herd. He comes by way of a friend of a friend. He is 12, has been with the same person since he was 3, has excellent TWH blood lines and a witty personality.  I have only known him a few days and I am already in love.  He runs up and past you and then stops and backs up to have his tush scratched.  He runs straight at you in a terrifying way (he's a big boy) and then stops a foot or two in front of you and smacks his mouth together as though he were a foal.  There is a part of him I think will never grow up.  He runs up and says "I'm Bob, Joe Bob" (like James Bond) and then sticks out his tongue and says "just kidding"  He gets along with every single horse in the herd, but right now his special friend is Vandy.  The two of them hang out at the round bale with the cows like it's the office water cooler talking about all the adventures they will have together. I see it now...me on Joe Bob and my grand daughter on Vandy.

He seems afraid of nothing. This morning when I fed he tried to follow me up the steps and into the cabin/office/feed room/craft room.  When I went in and closed the door, he walked over the porch several times.  He politely went to his bucket to eat beet pulp and alfalfa pellets with a little bit of feed. Stormy, the foal, was at her own bucket.  When he finished his he came over to Stormy and asked politely if he could have some of her food. She said no and he left with no discussion.  Then he came back and asked again and they shared what he had left.

Sherman is very aggressive about his food. The other morning he came after Joe Bob when I brought the food outside. I could very easily have been run over, but sweet Joe Bob spun around and out of the way, avoiding Sherman and not knocking me over.

I love the way I call him and he comes running from wherever he is in the pasture.

I feel so blessed to have this boy in my life. I can hardly wait for our adventure to begin.

The Holidays and other such fragmented anecdotes

Today I sit at home in a quiet space. Mike when to church and I stayed home. I feel bad about staying home, but my face is a combination of black and blue and swollen red from the beating it took when my face made contact with a foal raising her head really fast.  I was bent over putting more feed in her feeder when she suddenly raised up, smacking me square in the face.  I saw stars, thought I would cry, and pass out all the at the same time. I was so stunned that I thought about crying out for help, but not only was the wind blowing 50 miles per hour, my half deaf husband (really, not being mean) was in the house and wouldn't have heard me anyway. So I staggered back and finished feeding, all while feeling blood rush down my nose and from my mouth.  When I got back in the house I was happy to see it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be, but my gums were bleeding above my two front teeth...Never thought I would consider that I might have to sing "all I want for Christmas is my Two front Teeth" ever again.  Considering I have such a high prejudice over people with missing teeth I was very relieved to find that they were loose, just bleeding and skinned up.  I immediately got ice on my nose and my mouth, but needless to say it still swelled up and I feel like I was in a cage fight to the death.  Poor little mare didn't mean to do it...purely she zigged when I zagged.  It's the first time in 30 years that anything like this has happened to me...ouch.

Today it is so cold and Blustery. I can't remember a morning it has been this cold in Texas in...well, I can't remember. It reminds me a little of when I left Iowa, thinking the weather would be better in Indiana and we got a huge ice storm with temps at or below zero just a month or after I moved there.  The water froze on the troughs and we couldn't go anything except take buckets of warm water out to the horses because it was too cold for words.  Finally the troughs overflowed with the warm water we had dumped on the troughs to melt it and then we had to carry buckets out to offer water every couple hours.  Everything was in a state of emergency...made us happy we had hot dogs and eggs in the house.

Last night we had our holiday dinner with Mike;s family and it was really great. Good food, good fun, good family.  We stayed way too late and slept way to little, but it was totally wonderful. I love being part of this family.  It was so much fun to play with Xandra and William (my grandchildren) and hold the baby, Jonathon, though I think he does not like my perfume bc I couldn't get him to quit crying. I'm fairly good with babies usually, but I didn't have the right moves yesterday it seems.

I'm heading out to feed horses in a few minutes, but it's so cold. I'm not looking forward to it.  I'm making some hot water up to warm their bellies with their mashes.  I usually carry a bucket around to each other their buckets, but I think today I will bring the buckets in and then take the buckets back out to them rather than have to be dressed up like an eskimo toting heavy, wet feed around.  It's been kind of a weird, round robin kind of  day with one task reminding me of another. I have been paying bills, canceling subscriptions to save money (trying to figure out how to get my drop box files over to one of my other 2 gmail accounts so I can save myself the money I have been spending on drop box each month. I have to take violet out periodically because she is kennel confined.  She is really good about telling me when she needs to go out.

I had to make the unfortunate decision not to travel to Missouri for Christmas. With all the money we spent on the dog, we just don't have the money to travel. Plus we have to take Violet anywhere we go and our family isn't particularly dog friendly.   So, we will have a quiet Christmas here at home and finish getting me moved to Purmela.

Heading out to the cold...

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Analysis Paralysis--horse feeding

I have a herd of  various horses with various needs...They eat different amounts, need different calorie counts and have different positions in the herd. I'm trying to figure out what to feed and how to feed them best that each one gets what he/she needs. 

Gorgeous Dixie Lynn--pretty much lives on pasture, but needs a few more calories through the        winter--near bottom of the herd.
Mike's Dixie--lives on just pasture and hay and is fat--near bottom of the herd
Sherman--needs a fair amount of high quality feed and is a bully about being fed, so needs a larger  amount of feed and needs to be kept from stealing the other horse's feed
Liberty--Much like Sherman, needs a higher volume of feed, but can't keep his feed away from  Sherman when he wants it.   
Duke--Mike's 3 year old who is still a stallion (this will soon be rectified). He was out running around  with Mike's Dixie, a foal (Stormy) and a mule until we penned him up to start getting him halter  broke and turned into a solid citizen.  He has gone from heavy to too skinny. I'm contemplating  letting him out to eat more forage than the hay he has been getting. I have been feeding him a couple  times per day, but he frets when left alone and has not done well in confinement. So I need to make  sure he can eat all his feed, but that he feels secure enough to actually start eating again.
Jezebelle--Mike's mule who is on her way to live somewhere else (someone want a mule that is  mostly wild and likes to stomp dogs, gorgeous, but cagey and hates dogs.
Stormy--6 month old foal who is of good weight...a little too heavy but since it's winter I don't want  to cut her back too much.
Hermoso--Paso fino gelding from a rescue in florida...very cute, not a bad weight but could gain  more. Hasn't come to Mike's yet, so I'm not sure what will happen when he comes here.  He  currently eats Bluebonnet Omega Force feed (which I love) but not a huge amount.
Vandy--Needs a little more weight, but has held his weight well at Teresa's over the last month on  pasture, getting fed sporadically. Also currently eats Bluebonnet.
Joe Bob--Yes, his name is really Joe Bob. He has been on one scoop of One and only, which I can't  get down here. Not sure about his ease of keeping yet, but he may be slightly insulin resistant and  may have to have his sugar watched.

Liberty, Sherman, Vandy, Hermoso, and Gorgeous Dixie were all with me in Bluff Dale.  Duke, Jezabelle, Stormy and Mike's dixie were all at his house to start.  He fed his horses Omolene 300 (because of the foal, who was an orphan) and Country Acres 12/8 pellets. I fed my horses Bluebonnet Omega force. It is similar to Ultium and another ADM feed that was high in Omega 3's.  The price point is around $25 per bag give or take.  Mike's feed is much less expensive and I can get it down the road, but I have been so happy with the Bluebonnet I really hate to switch. It seems like they could all eat it and be ok if I fed it in adjusted amounts, but dang, it's so expensive. I have wondered about feeding the "working" horses the better feed and the ones who are just hanging out something else.  

I know there are a million different ways to do this and there isn't a right or a wrong, but there are so many choices I have a hard time making up my mind.

What I haven't been able to decide or figure out is if omolene is good for the horses or not...it's been around for so long but it seems like it has too much sugar? Shrug. I have been guilty of buying the TSC 12% sweet feed in a pinch too and they don't seem to be suffering.

But the real dilemma is how to get some weight on Duke really fast. So I would love some suggestions...

Anyway, pardon the paralysis, and please I do take constructive advice.


Tuesday, December 6, 2016

I must be getting old

I have gone to bed before 9 the last 4 nights...2 of them were because we were camping, one because we were pooped from camping, and  last night was because at 8:42 we were just tired.  Tonight I am at "my" house in bluff dale. I had a glorious afternoon of getting things done planned, only to have truck trouble in Hico. Of course Mike was there to save the day. Turned out that the oil filter had blown out all the oil. Easy fix, but turned my productive afternoon into an unproductive one.

I have had to begin to admit that I am a morning person.  I'm not an extreme morning person, but I confess I'd rather get up early and do some things I enjoy from riding to working out to just drinking coffee and watching TV, in the morning than at night.  I started to watch a show this evening and at the first commercial break I turned it off. I flipped through my DVR and instead of finding a show I wanted to watch I deleted half the contents.  I don't like to pay bills at night and I love to crochet and watch TV most evenings, but tonight I have a cat in my lap and we are quite cozy.  

I am coming to the end of my time here in Bluff Dale and I'm ready to move on. I didn't see clients today because of the truck and I plan to tomorrow, but I also know that I'm not really loving dragging myself into the city.  I still haven't gotten word about my second interview back and I hate to not keep working as much as possible or January will be very lean.  I have things lined up, I just have to follow up and make them happen. I don't really want to start delivering pizzas for a living, though it certainly wouldn't be the first time I have done something like that.  

In any case, I'm heading to bed soon. I have been texting Mike but he hasn't been answering, which tells me he has probably already fallen asleep in his chair.  I have on a snuggy and a cat and I'm still chilly, so it may be time to soon crawl into bed with a good book.  

Speaking of books, I have received three books from the book club that Natalie had us do. They all look good.

Mike and I had a great ride this weekend at Parrie Haynes in spite of the cold.  He got first and first. He told me if I was fierce enough to scare off the competition then I could have blue ribbons too. Liberty and I weren't on our best game this weekend. Amy got first and Kate second. I know that they had great rides on their calm and quiet ponies. It makes me wonder again why I do this with this horse. He is emotional and naughty and misbehaves so often, but I love him dearly and we are a good team.  This week just wasn't our week.  There are a lot of good people in CP this year and who knows if we will stack up when it's all said and done.  Vet judge said he was a little off in the left front...that is the leg from Colorado.  Liberty may be getting to an age where we have to take it easier. he's only 15 and I hate to think of that because he has the heart and the spirit of a youngster.  But he may need an easier life :-(

I was going to get up and ride in the morning and Thursday like I did last week...only I realize that in spite of having a couple of saddles here I don't have girths or stirrups and no bridles or helmets, so I guess I will be doing work the next couple mornings instead. It's ok as I need to do my music therapy CEU stuff and that will be good to have out of the way.  I just felt so great when I got out and rode last week and soon I will be dealing with black gumbo farm mud instead of sandy farm soil.  oh well...