Monday, June 30, 2008

Just Another Weekend...

It was a beautiful May weekend...oh wait...it's the end of June. It is hard to remember because the weather has been so cool and everything is still so green(Sorry to rub it in to those of you who are baking and/or dry as a bone).
What I really wanted to do was ride all day on Saturday. But instead this is what my mom had in mind...
Damn!
Oh well! Right now, what momma wants...momma gets! She has waited long enough to get to finish this. She started 2 years ago, but the paint smell bothered my step-dad-so it was left indefinitely. I think it bothers her that it had to be left unfinished, but it bothers her even more that now it can be finished...
It looks nice. I like the color. Couldn't help but gaze off toward the corral a few times though. Most of those ponies have been on hold for a few years too-a few more days won't hurt.
I tried to get some nice profile pictures of Frosty. Bad spot to do it in-too much junk in the background and the sun had set a little to far to really catch the light...
I really liked his pose in this one. But that darn paint pony of Megan's wandered too close and I caught his shadow...
I can't help but hope that Shooter will grow up to look like this. Frosty is just a pretty, pretty horse. Conformationally he is just so correct. I just wished his brain would mature. It isn't really that he is dumb-it's just that his retention is not as good as I would like it to be. But he is super gentle and very honest-so the rest will come with time.

His foot is healing really well. It is completely healed inside and we are just waiting for the hide and hair to finish growing back together. I doubt there will even be much of a scar...

And the cactus are blooming...
Wished I had been paying attention, because I love cactus jelly and I bet I could have convinced mom to make me a couple of jars if I would have brought her a bucket of the buds before they bloomed.

BTW-Thank you everyone for the super nice compliments on little Shooter. He definitely knows he is special. I really like this one colt a year thing. I tried to upload a video of him tonight, but 30 minutes into it-I pushed the cancel button. I'm tired and want to got to bed. Can anyone tell me if uploading it to YouTube is quicker than to Blogger?

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Shooter speaks...

I like to lay in the tall grass and play peek a boo...
See my pretty profile? I don't know what that is, but those 2-legged creatures keep coming out and oohing and aahing over it...
Darn the flies. Why can't they just leave me alone?...
No problem. I'll just go under momma and get them off me...
I don't know why they keep talking about my butt too. Don't all colts have big butts?



Megan snapped some pics of the severe thunderstorm that narrowly missed us...



Beautiful to look at, but I am so glad it went around. Mrs Mom you need to come up here and rope yourself some rain clouds-LOL.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

What A Wonderful Week It Has Been So Far

I tell ya-this has just been a fantastic week for us. Barrel Racings, Horse Shows and winning the contest from over at TrainWreck's wonderful blog. I love art work and feel very honored to receive the print she is sending my way. If you haven't been to her site yet-you have to check it out. TrainWreck is one talented photographer and artist.

Today was Megan's County 4-H Show. I am kicking myself-I started out the morning taking pictures and got busy, set the camera down and the next thing I know-the day is done and I only have a couple of pictures. Bad Mommy! Of course I was busy braiding manes, brushing tails, washing legs, wiping noses and giving last minute instructions. I think Megan is getting to the age where she likes it when I am showing my own horse-so I leave her the hell alone-LOL. She is such a professional little thing-that she doesn't really need my help-but hey-I'm the Momma-its my job to make sure those stray hairs are tucked away and the grass is out of Strawberry's mouth, etc, etc. Right?
Anyway...Megan and her Strawberry had a very good day. These two fit together like peas and carrots(as Forest Gump would say). She showed him in both English and Western Showmanship, E&W Horsemanship and Trail. He garnered her 3 purples; E&W Showmanship and Hunt Seat Equitation and 2 blues; Trail and Western Equitation.
Showmanship is all that I got pics of...



Rip, the blue roan horse grabbed her a blue in barrels and 2 reds; Western Riding and Pole Bending. Now I am going to defend the blue horse-He had NEVER seen either a WR pattern or been around the Poles before-EVER! But he and Megan just went out there and had some fun. Her barrel run was nice. I think she can let him ease into the next gear. He is consistent and really looks at the barrels. The WR was strictly for fun. it sucked. We laughed-but Meg said she liked doing it so it looks like we will be adding that to the list. Megan had the people in the grandstand laughing because when she was long trotting Rip through the pole pattern-we kept hearing these little Woo-Hoo's out of her. Rip is a large horse. A Very Large horse! He is or very nearly 16H and weighs in about 1400lbs, and we have taken all of the excess weight off of him. He is about as trim as he is ever going to get and still look good. I would never have considered starting him on poles until today.

My mom was there and I know she really wanted to tell me that Megan should not take Rip around the poles because she is always afraid that doing a bunch of different stuff in one day is going to confuse a horse. I roll my eyes at that. Rip is a solidly broke ranch horse and he is 12y/o. We are not talking about a green or young horse that might get rattled by too much in one day. So mom and I are sitting in the grandstands and mom's mouth is a little tight. I know she wants to say something about this but she is doing a good job of not opening her mouth. Megan comes into the arena at a long trot, heads down the pole pattern, sits down, lifts the rein and Rip whips around that end pole like he knows what he is doing. Mom and I look at each other like WHOA-that was cool. Megan and Rip proceed to weave through the poles like they had actually practiced this before, whip around the other end pole and back through. Megan was laughing so hard she almost forgot to finish her final turn and they long trotted out. I see the pole bending pattern coming into play in Rip's future!

Now the fun is over for awhile-its back to riding those other horses that have been getting neglected. Got to get more ready to take to some play days and horse shows-hehehe.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

He Earned His First Paycheck

Still not the smooth run that I would like to have, but Moon is keeping up with the big boys, even with all of my pilot errors. We were awful wide going into first, but he came back out of it good. We went into second pretty good, but came out wide...

We were a little wide getting to third. He was really good and let me move him over some. He came out just a powering...
Our time was 17.098. The winning time was 16.018. We picked up 2nd place in the 3D. Obviously Moon has the speed, now if I could just get my butt in and out of the saddle at the right time...

Megan made a nice exhibition run on Rip. First was sort of wide all the way around. Second was wide going into it...

They came out of it in great form though...

Third was beautiful...
Megan's form is back on track and Rip's run reflected it. I'm so proud of my girl!!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

It wasn't pretty...

But it was fast! Moon made a good run today. Good enough for 5th out of 20 barrel racers. His time was 19.94. That doesn't sound incredibly fast but the winning time was 19.68, 2nd was 19.69, 3rd and 4th were in the 19.8?'s. The horses that beat us were finished rodeo horses, so all in all I feel really good about it.

Now to tear it to pieces, so we can be even better next time!

This Open Horse Show had the strangest rules-1st-you couldn't make a circle when you when in the arena and 2nd-they wouldn't let you out of the arena until you were dismounted. Okay-so I can understand the dismount-some of these kid's horses are barely under control and I am sure that they have had one(or more) run off coming out of the arena, but getting disqualified for having to lope a circle to pick up your lead? That's a new one on me.

Anyway, I wasn't too sure that Moon would pick up his right lead going from a straight away start-so when they call my name and opened the gate-I was trying to figure out the best game plan. I cued him for his right lead and he sort of jumped back and forth between my legs as we was going through the gate. His little pin ears were rigid and he was focused on those barrels. I didn't think he had the correct lead-so I cued him again and he lunged but in the left lead. At this point I was only about 2 strides from crossing the timer and I was not about to let him start for that first barrel in the wrong lead. So I pulled him up and decided to take the circle and the disqualification, every run counts now and I cannot let him get back in the habit of starting in the wrong lead, besides-there was no money riding on it. I tipped his head to the right and cued him for his lead and the little sucker took the lead and headed for the barrel. I was over the line and decided to go for it.
Going into 1st was a little shaky and I think I was about a stride to late asking for the rate but Moon has never blown by a barrel and he sure didn't on this one. As you can see, we are both out of position coming around 1st. I could feel his shoulder wanting to leave and reached up to get a hold of the outside of the rein...
He came out of 1st with just a little bow, but quickly straightened up and was laid out for 2nd. He got there before I was really ready and I know I wasn't looking at my pocket, I was looking at the barrel. I could feel Moon heading straight for it and I picked up the inside rein to move him over but he was already turning it and all I did was cause his shoulder to bow out right here...
Luckily, he finished this stride and sort of paused. That miniscule little pause gave both of us a chance to gather up and we headed straight for 3rd. Moon went straight to his pocket, but I could feel him wanting to slice it. He is so good going into that barrel, but he gets about 1/2 way through and wants to set his hind leg and roll over it on top of the barrel. I lifted a little harder than I should have, I suppose and ended up dropping my hand to hold his shoulder in to finish the turn...
I am also looking down and I should be looking up toward the gate by now. I was so behind in this run-but we held it together and still came in with a fast time. Only 3-10ths of a second off of the leader. I know that we easily lost a 10th of a second or better around each barrel due to pilot error.

Megan snapped this while I had Moon at the fence so he could watch a couple of runs. Yes, he actually does watch-sounds crazy huh? I think it gets his mind thinking about it and gives me a chance to see if there are any trouble spots. After spending the day tied to the trailer, Moon was in pleasure horse mode...
A friend of the family was sitting to my left and he asked me if that was my barrel horse. I said yes. Meanwhile Moon has a leg cocked and his lip is hanging-he is basically asleep. He's kind of a smart ass(in the good, funny-haha sort of way) and he said "Looks like a pleasure horse to me."

When I came out after my run-he had the funniest expression. I do like my barrel horses to be quiet, but Moon takes the cake-LOL.

Megan had a good day on her pink pony too. She was just out of the ribbons in all 3 of her classes, but I think her and Strawberry are in the right mindset now.
Strawberry is a natural little pleasure horse. He just likes to go slow. When Megan leaves his head alone and used her butt to control his speed, they are hard to beat...
Today, Megan just couldn't leave his head alone. Her hand would get higher and I could see her jiggling her reins. Strawberry's head just kept coming up and up and his legs got faster and faster. I think she forgot it was her butt that controlled the cruise on him and not her hands.
Oh well, ride and learn. This is the first show of the season and Megan is in a new age division. Her and "The Berries" will step it up.

She had a beautiful Trail run going until they got to this slicker...
Strawberry didn't mind her picking it up, but he was a little freaked that she was actually going to put it on(as required). But other than staying a little stiff, he decided it wasn't going to eat him and she finished fine...
It was a long day, but much fun. I found a couple more playdays and another horse show to go to in July. And lo and behold-there is a NBHA barrel racing right here in town on Tuesday. Wonder how old Moon will do on his home turf?

Friday, June 20, 2008

Busy, Busy, Busy...

It seems that I have been going non-stop since Chris left. I have managed to take little breaks and try to keep up with everyone's blogs, but just haven't had time to leave many comments. Summer is definitely here and the project lists just keep getting longer and longer.
I started this patio stone project about a month ago. First I had to dig out all of the old grass and dirt that had accumulated in the last 20 years(I had a picture of that too-but must have deleted it-oops).
This is the second step...
I had to bring in tub after tub of sand to level it again.

Finally! The majority of it is done...
I just have to pick up some new brick to finish the edges and get it seeded. It sure feels weird to walk out the door and not have to walk around the mud puddle that used to accumulate here. Mom likes it so well that she has added 3 landscaping projects at her house to the list. Yikes!

Megan's 4-H Horse Show is only a week away. I had wonderful plans this spring to get the practices going early and really work with these kids this year. It never happened! All of the kids are so busy with school athletics that no one could ever fit in a practice. Now that the show is only a week away-they want me to start having practices. I don't think so!!
But Megan and I have been going to the arena and riding regularly. The other night some other kids showed up, so we all worked on the new Horsemanship patterns and I let the kids end the night with a game of "Arena Tag"...
I was rather sad that I didn't have a horse there that night(I had to take the cones and poles up in the pickup). They had a lot of fun.
The girls ganged up on the boy...
But his little yellow horse is pretty quick and he got away--this time...
Of course our little Shooter is growing like the weeds I have spent hours weed wacking...
He is at that stage where he has to put his mouth on everything...
I bet he is wondering what on earth his momma finds so fascinating about this green tub.

He likes to play King of the Hill on the dirt pile...
I'm sure it isn't as much fun as it would be if he had a playmate. Red Dog would like to be his playmate. That silly dog will spend hours sitting there staring at Shooter. But, he has not given chase one single time. That's good-because if he does-he will find himself getting UPSed back to Colorado to spend the summer with his dad-LOL.

Tomorrow is another full day and then Sunday is a horse show in Nebraska. I'm glad Megan is going to get a show in before next Friday. It ought to get her mind right and relieve those first show of the season jitters. I get to take Moon and finally get a timed run on him. There are some open rodeos coming up and I need to know whether I should spend the money to enter. I guess I will know soon enough.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

How Chris Finally Got Home

Holy Crap-I just figured something out on blogger. All of this time I have been uploading my pics and posting while on the Edit Html tab. While trying to load the only pic I have this morning, I fumbled around and clicked on the Compose tab. I always wondered how people got their posts to do cool things like different font color, center and stike-out-now I know. And you can see the pics while you are typing-on Edit Html all you see it the Html code. Wow-don't know if I feel really smart for figuring it out or really dumb for not figuring it out sooner-LOL.

Alrighty then-so where was I?
Oh yes, so Tuesday morning Chris and I woke up rather abruptly to some serious lightening and window rattling thunder boomers. It was 4:30 in the morning. All the noise was followed by a heavy rain. But it was a fast moving storm and it was over quickly. So we dozed off again until daylight. Chris wanted to get an early start because he has to ride his motorcycle 700 miles in one day. He gets his bags ready and gets ready to take off. Of course, there I am out there with the camera documenting his departure. As he is leaving, I am trying to snap a picture and the memory if full. Crap! As I am desperately trying to delete a picture(any picture) so I can get one of him leaving, I hear the motorcycle engine rev, a crash, then no engine but a lot of cussing. When I look up, I see Chris and his Ultra Glide laying in the mud. HOLY SHIT! I just about threw the camera in the mud but luckily the tailgate was down on the pickup and that is where it landed and I haul ass up the road to help him. Now mind you, I am in PJ's and am barefoot. Chris is cussing up a storm and pissed beyond belief. We get the motorcycle up and he gets on. I am thinking we need to make sure that everything is okay before he takes off again, but he is so angry that he takes off up the road, slipping and sliding in the mud. I am left standing there to watch him leave with mud squishing up between my toes, thinking this is not a good start to this trip.
Finally, I go inside and wash the mud off my feet. I don't have a good feeling about this trip. It started with a crash and Chris has no cell phone. Seven hundred miles in one day is a lot anyway-but on a motorcycle?
Within an hour the phone rings. I was relieved that it was Chris on the other end. He made it about 50 miles down the road and stopped to fill his bike up. But he can't move his knee and is wondering if I can call mom and see if I can drive one of her pickups for a couple of days. He wants to leave his bike and take the Duramax. I told him that is no problem and to come on back. I am relieved.
I called mom, told her what happened and asked if I could drive one of the ranch pickups. Somehow mom totally misinterpets everything. She thinks Chris and I got into a fight before he left and while she is saying its okay to drive one of her pickups she is rattling on about us fighting and our tempers and blah, blah, blah. I stopped trying to explain that he was only mad after he dumped his bike and just said "Thanks, I gotta go." Time enough to explain later-Megan and I have to get the Duramax cleaned out so Chris can get down the road in it.
Mom calls back after a little while and I finally get her to understand that Chris and I did not get in a fight, that he dumped his bike and his knee is wrenched. Once she understands, everything is okay and she does what my mom does best--she comes up with a much better plan. Why didn't we call the airlines and see if we could get him on a flight. Now why didn't I think of that?

So when Chris gets back to the house, we take a few minutes to discuss the options and I start looking online for flights out of Pierre. They were $1,500 bucks. Chris says no way. Finally, I decide to call the airlines direct to see if we can get a better deal. YES!! We got Chris on a flight, out of Pierre, the next day for $450. Hey-it would cost about that in fuel and still take 11 hours for him to get home. This way he left at 6:30am and was home, in Grand Junction by 9:30am. Couldn't beat that deal with a stick.

That night we loaded up and went to spend the night in Pierre. We almost didn't get a room. Now who would think that every hotel in Pierre, SD would be booked on a Tuesday night? Not me! But we did and got to enjoy an awesome steak dinner at a little hole-in-the wall restaurant. The next morning, I got Chris to the airport and because the Pierre airport is so small, I got to hang out with him until he boarded. We got to watch a gorgeous sunrise and the news. As we was watching both of us held our breath and gave each other a wide-eyed look. Apparently, a devastating hail storm had come up from Nebraska and cut a wide swath just 50 miles east of my home town. Softball sized hail covered the ground like snow and there was not a single leaf left on the trees. Chris would have been in the direct line of that storm if he had been on his bike headed back to Colorado. OMG!

Things happen for a reason, even if you don't know what the reason is at that moment. There was no reason that Chris should have dumped his bike. He is a seasoned rider and a little mud is normally nothing to him. He doesn't know how he wrenched his left knee, the one he uses to shift. His bike went down on its right side. And the odd thing is he could hardly move his knee all day Tuesday, but Wednesday morning he said it was fine. All I know is that if he had been on his bike or even in the pickup, he would have driven right into the middle of that hailstorm on Tuesday and the outcome would not have been good. Don't things like that just make you wonder about karma and the universe?

My karma was pretty good too. I picked up this awesome 101 piece drill bit set for $25.00....
Everything I will ever need in one handy little roll up bag. SWEET!!

EDITED!! To add pictures of the new purses my brother made and sent home...
That is inlaid hand beading on this black number with matching wallet.

And I just love this chocolate brown alligator bag...

All of the bags that my brother makes are 100% hand cut, hand sewn and one of a kind. His work is so impressive. He wants to me to start selling it but I don't have any idea of how to get it out there. Anyone have any ideas besides Ebay?

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

My Blogging Space

That crazy Pony Girl comes up with the greatest ideas. Girl, you are just too cool! I think you should come hang out in SD for a couple of weeks. I am sure I can take you to the rodeos and we can find you a whole list of cowboys. Why settle for one, to start with-LOL. We would have a blast!! And you wouldn't even have to worry about sharing them with me-number one-I have the man of my dreams and number two-I don't do cowboys-but I sure know a bunch-LOL.

Anyway, this is my little corner...
As you can see, I am still working with my pieced together computer. I did have the case back on the hard drive, but it locked up on me one day and so I had to take it apart, pull the RAM strip and decided not to put it back together until I get the new RAM stick.
I don't have the beautiful painting Chris got me for Valentine's Day on the wall yet. Shame on me!! The walls in this house are CEMENT! It isn't easy getting nails in them and until I remember to get the correct hangers, I am not taking a chance that, that bugger could fall down(on me or the computer-LOL).
In the cubby holes you can see my sewing machine and kit. I haven't used it this year yet. I gotta get rolling on Megan and I's new show shirts-but I have to get the material for the collars and cuffs still-another unfinished project-oh yay! And of course my barrel racing and pole bending books are handy too. Gotta keep that reference material right where I can see it.
The rest of my reference material is in the black case to the far right and bottom of the picture. That seems to be the only paperwork I can ever keep organized. Oh well, at least I have my priorities straight-right??
The little rolling cart under the window is all of my drawing and painting stuff. I haven't done much of that in the few years but I will never get rid of my stuff. Having to replace it all would cost an arm and a leg. I still sketch some-gotta stay in practice a little bit.
Of course, all I have to do is lean back and I can look out the window and see Woofer and Shooter. Can't beat that view!!

So if any of you haven't been to Pony Girl's page(yea right-everyone goes to Pony Girl's page-;) consider yourself tagged...

Monday, June 16, 2008

How to Resolve Frustration

So what does a cowgirl do when things get really frustrating?
She hooks up a trailer...
Loads it with horses and heads to the arena to ride! Nothing like riding to make the worries of the world go away!

Megan got to put a little sweat time into Blue's day...
Now Mrs Mom was very kind to call my horses WIDE. That isn't exactly the term I would use for this guy unless I was saying Wide Load or Two Ax Handles Wide. For Blue there is no other term than OBESE. Gargantuan comes to mind! He is one of those kind. You know the ones that you can give a bucket of water and a handful of air to and they stay overweight. He's a lovely horse though. I have no idea what direction we will go with him. Hard to tell until we get the blubber melted off.

And then there is Turk. Turk the Jerk!...
He and I finally got to have our little "go-around". Turk doesn't think he can transition to a lope without kicking out or throwing a buck or two in there. In the arena, I got to work on this. Hehehe-I won! That's why he is standing all stretched out--he is trying to get his air back. Funny how a little hard work, like rolling back on the fence-repeatedly, makes them think twice about acting out.

Now here's what you would call a bad wire cut scar...
When Turk was being ridden by one of the locals, the guy who owned the pasture next to where he was at, turned his stud and mares out. For some reason Turk never read the memo that he had been gelded and he and the stallion got into a fight over the fence. Turk lost...and almost lost his foot. The guy that was riding him doctored it for 6 months, finally gave up and turned him out in another pasture. One day, the guy calls mom and said he had the killer buyer coming by to get him. Mom freaked and made the killer buyer bring him home. As for soundness-As long as I keep him trimmed he is completely sound. We will see what he can handle and may end up getting front shoes on to give that foot some support.

And then there is Sandy...
He is just a really nice ranch horse that should be a barrel horse deluxe. Last year we learned that about that right lead. What is it with team ropers NEVER teaching their horses about leads? Sandy remembered and picked it right up this time. Good boy!

Megan rode Leo for me...
He is back to slow work on the barrels to get his pattern fixed. He has had so many of my brother's girlfriends run barrels on him that he doesn't know where to go or what to do anymore. Lots of slow patterning will get his confidence back.

Here's Megan with her barrel horse(in training) and her show horse...
That darn kid gets all of the colorful horses-LOL.

Look at the size difference in these two...
You gotta click on the photo to appreciate it-LOL.

And after a long, hard day of riding, mowing, weed-wacking and trimming feet(No, there was no fence building-I figured if my brother wanted to spend that much time and effort redoing the corner posts-thats his choice)--this showed up on my doorstep last night...
When he walked in the door, the only thing I could think to say was "I thought you were dead?". Guess he really did lose his cell phone again-LOL.