Thursday, February 14, 2013


I made a flying trip to Colorado, saw my hubby, picked up my other 3 horses, my kid and her new puppy and we are already back in Arizona. We are all moving over to the new place and I will only have internet access through my phone. I'll keep you guys posted on the rodeoing...but the posts will be short and sweet until I get internet access.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Not What I Hoped For

My debute pro run in Yuma was not anything close to what I hoped for...

Moon went down on the backside of the 1st barrel. Not all the way down, but it was close. As close as it comes and I hope it never happens again. I didn't have time to be scared but I was looking for a spot to land and knew that when I hit I had better just keep on rolling because Moon's body was coming in the same direction.

We were the 10th and last runner in the Saturday perf and Moon hit hardpan. I saw the hardpan just as Moon's front feet landed in that spot and I thought, 'Oh hell, I better pick him up.', but it was too late, his front feet just skittered out from under him. I ended up almost upside down on his inside (right) shoulder and I'm pretty sure the only thing that kept me from going all the way off was my spurs sliding up under the saddle blanket and stopping my forward motion.

Moon is a quick footed bugger though. He caught himself, lunged forward and then took off running for the 2nd barrel. I wasn't exactly back in the saddle yet and had no reins (they got jerked out of my hands when he lunged up and forward) so when he took the 2nd turn, he threw me forward again. This time I felt the rubber band on my left foot pop and I lost that stirrup. After that, I was basically just desperately trying to right myself in the saddle and hold on. No reins, no stirrup and a horse that is panicked and flying. Not a fun ride!! I had no way to control him and he ran into 3rd barrel, sent it flying and had to jump it. You know it's bad when you see people jumping over the fence as you are racing toward home because they think they are going to have to stop a runaway horse. Luckily, Moon is really good about stopping at the fence. I just kept telling him whoa and trying to get set up in the saddle.

I couldn't figure out at the time why I couldn't get ahold of the reins. They were right there. But after we got out of the arena and I got off, I realized I couldn't loosen his cinch either. At first I couldn't feel my fingers on my left hand, but then the pain set in. I must have whacked my hand on the saddle and my fingers were not working. Two days later and they are still sore. Of course at the time, I thought that was the worst of it, but the next day is when the rest of it set in. I tweaked the heck out of my back. Particularly the muscle on the lower left side.

Moon seemed to have faired better than I did. I went over him thoroughly the next morning and he does not seem to be sore at all. THANKFULLY!! I swear, I worry more about that horse getting sore or hurt WAY more than I worry about myself (or anything else I have).

I had a couple of people come up to me afterwards and ask me if I was okay. One lady (another barrel racer) said she didn't know how I stuck with him and marveled at how Moon managed to regain his feet. She said she thought we were toast. LOL. Bless her though, I was rather mortified over my debute pro run, she just shrugged and said, 'It happens to all of us at some point. You just got it out of the way early.'

You know, I have to say, I was rather looking forward to being a long ways from home and being able to hopefully get a few runs in 'anonymously'...but that didn't seem to be the case. I was really weirded out by the fact that as Moon was running in the gate that the announcer knew my hometown AND Moon's name. Seriously? The only info I gave the WPRA was my current address and I did not have to fill out anything in regards to my horses. That just sort of freaked me out to hear that info coming from the announcer...of course then everything went to hell in a handbasket and the whole time, I'm thinking, 'Oh great...I'm 1500 miles from SD and I don't even live there anymore and this guy won't shut the hell up about it.' LMAO. Lord knows why such things go through your mind in times of total chaos.

So's over and done with. It's one of those disposable runs. There is nothing to think about or just was what it was and you move on to the next one.

Friday, February 8, 2013

I Could Blame The Pig

I could probably blame Bugs' fit on the pig...but to be honest, he pulled back once before the pig ever showed up, so, meh...He's just that way.

Mercy had asked me the night before if I could wait to ride one of my horses until after she got home from school, so I said, 'Sure.' I specifically picked Bugs because he does not walk as fast as Moon and Frosty do. Those two wear poor Charmer out. Charmer (Mercy's horse) may be old, but he is one heckava horse yet and no way is he letting some young whipper-snappers out walk him. But its too much and I don't like making him have to keep up and then be sore the next day.

So Mercy and I saddle up and head to the desert and Mikey heads out to pick up a pig. Specifically a Vietnamese Pot-bellied pig that was found roaming around by a friend of hers.

Now, you guys know Mikey. That is just the way she rolls. Part of me is wanting to ask, 'What the heck do you want that pig for?' Most of me knows the answer. 'Just because!'.

Now me?...When I was growing up, we always had a butcher pig or two around, so our horses were quite used to them. But I know full well the effect seeing a pig for the first time can have on a horse. I watched my dad rope a pig one time and even though the horse he was riding was used to seeing the pig...when that pig came up the rope, squealing and charging...That horse L.O.S.T. it. He blew up, he tried to run off and he darned neared killed my dad. I don't think poor old Nevada was ever the same after that. Of course, none of us had any sympathy for my dad. As his age he should have known better than to rope a pig. But watching the wreck was funny as hell!!!

So anyway, Mercy and I get back from our ride and I see Mikey out there and every horse on the place is on high alert. Oohhh...She let the pig out of the trailer and it was roaming around the yard. I told Mercy to get ahold of Charmer and be prepared in case he noticed the pig. I gathered up my reins and got prepared in case Bugs saw it too. Bugs was actually more focused on Moon, who was high trotting around his pen, head up and tail flagging. Wished I had video of that...Moon looked quite pretty. LOL

Mikey comes to help Mercy get in the yard, I tie Bugs behind the trailer and go to help wrangle the pig into the dog kennel. Moon is spazzing out, but instead of running away, he kept leaning over the fence. The pig, who is just wandering around comes strolling by Moon's fence and Moon goes into attack mode. OMG...Both Mikey and I were yelling at him and running to get the pig away from the fence. I'm pretty sure Moon would have come right over it and he was intent on KILLING that poor little pig. He was striking and stomping. His ears were pinned and his teeth were bared. I had the oddest thought cross my mind in that moment, 'Moon would have been a really nasty stud.'

We get the pig moved away from Moon's fenceline and he heads for the fenceline where Mikey's horses are. Apparently this pig really likes horses because that is the only place he wants to next to wherever there is a horse. Mikey's horses were enthralled, but not aggressive like Moon was...

As you can see, Dolly and the pony wanted nothing to do with that pig...They stayed at the back of the pen the whole time.

Mikey gets some grain and gets the little pig to eating some...

It took all three of us to ease little piggy into the kennel, but thanks to having worked at a pig farm in North Dakota...I do know how to move a pig. LOL. Pigs do not have good eyesight, so you have to move them kind of slow. We got the pig close enough to the kennel that we could encircle him and then we just crouched down and spread our arms. When the pig would take a step toward the kennel, we would move in. When he would turn to face us, we would wiggle our fingers and talk to him. I'm sure we looked hilarious from behind-all crouched down, arms spread and giving the pig some 'spirit fingers'. Mikey and I are trying not to laugh to loudly and Mercy was like, 'I don't know about this.' Oh my hell!!! But it worked. He finally eased into the dog kennel and started snarfing up grain.

I swear, we had no sooner shut the gate on that dog kennel and Mikey's phone rings...The pig's owner called to claim him. And THAT is how it goes at Mikey's house. ROFLMAO!!

Later, Mikey says, 'Well darn it, I wished the pig would have stayed around for a couple of days. He was a great training tool for the horses.' Personally....I was glad to see him go. Moon NEVER took his eyes off of where that pig disappeared to (in the kennel)...
(Picture is a little grainy because I had to lighten it so you could see Moon. It was almost dark by then.)

I told Mikey, 'Well thank god it's gone. I would have had to go to town and buy a case of Ulcergard for Moon. The way he was acting, he would have been exhausted by Friday and in no shape to make a rodeo run.'

Of course, you would think that would end the excitement for the night, but NO! Immediately after is when Bugs had his fit and then Mikey takes off in the desert (in the dark...but armed!!) after a feral dog that has been running with the coyotes. He's most likely the reason so many pets have gone missing around here this last year and Mikey and Wade are pretty determined to eliminate him.

And so ends another day hanging with the Fearless Farrier crew. It all seems so normal...and then all hell breaks loose. LOL.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Fat and Grumpy

I got a chuckle out of the trainer's assessment of one of our fellow blogger's horses. If you haven't read it, here ya go...Nuzzling Muzzles.

Speaking of fat, lazy and grumpy...

Bugs is starting to think this 'working horse' thing is for the birds and today he decided to pitch a fit.

Bugs was notorious for pulling back for no particular reason and he don't quit until he breaks a leadrope. He hasn't done that for quite some time but today he showed he's not entirely over it. I have figured out it is a temper issue with him but I thought I had him over it. I guess it's back to the tie blocker for him and keeping my buggy whip handy.

Ya know, I know the horse is body sore, but I'm doing all I can to alleviate his discomfort...grooming, massaging, liniments and I am even applying Sore-No-More mud to his knees, hind fetlocks and stifles. The fact is, the horse is soft. Like marshmallow soft. He's 12 years old and never worked a day in his life. And it's not like I am riding him hard either. In spite of well-meaning but completely stupid people telling me I need to ride him up a few mountains to get the blubber off of him, (eyeroll) because he is so out of shape, I have either been ponying him or going for an hour to hour and a half WALK out in the desert. It's flat out there and yet he comes home dripping in sweat. His body is just not used to regular, forced exercise and it is pissing him right the heck off.

Bugs is at the same point Frosty was last year. I started to wonder if I was EVER going to get Frosty to slim down and take shape. It's just harder on and takes longer for these older horses to come around...and they are generally none too happy about it while it's happening. But since both Frosty and Spooks came through their PT pain and are much better, happy and healthier horses because of to shall Bugs!

I just might have to buy some major stock in a leadrope company. LOL

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Missing The Fire

Weellll...I did some things right today and one thing wrong. Darned if I didn't pick my hand up off of the horn too soon on first barrel and that always causes Moon to bow between 1st and 2nd. Damn, that's a bad habit. But it's pretty easy to fix. Once I see myself do it (Thanks Mikey for videoing me!!!), I can usually remember to keep my hands where they need to be for that one extra stride. It's one of those weird things I never remember doing until I see it in a video or pictures and I'm like, 'Oh yea...gotta remember to hold that turn.'

Moon was not coming across like he needed to for his 2nd barrel and I almost sat down and pulled, but thanks to working cattle on the fence yesterday (even though it wasn't Moon I was riding), I thought...'Girl, you had better get your butt up there and ride this horse a.r.o.u.n.d. the barrel.'...So I did.  I also remembered to use my legs to drive Moon into the turn instead of throwing my body forward to try to keep him going. I made myself do the exact same thing on the 3rd barrel and lo and behold...a clean run. Funny how that works isn't it? (sarcasm intended ;-)

I loaded this video on Youtube, so you can enlarge it to see it better....

The only thing that was disappointing was Moon really wasn't firing all that hard. He ran...he just lacked that feeling of 'blast off' I have come to expect from him. And I could feel him fading on me on the homestretch. Maybe you will have noticed it in the video. By the time Moon got to between the 1st and 2nd barrel on the way home, his speed just faded.

His attitude was 100% better today though. I should have known his stomach was acting up, but since everybody is feeling extra frisky in this beautiful Arizona weather, I was slow to catch on. I sure knew the way he was acting yesterday at the team penning wasn't right though. It doesn't take much to make him right. I gave him a 1/2 a tube of Ulcergard to start him out and will just give him a 1/4 of a tube a day until I get home and get my powder. It's wayyyyy cheaper to feed the powder form than the tubes.

LOL...I probably made it sound like Moon ran horribly slow...but we placed 6th out of 45 barrel racers and was just 3-10ths off of the fast time. That bow between 1st and 2nd probably cost us a 10th or two off our time, which might have put us in the money (and winning $$ is always a good thing), but my boy sure wasn't firing on all cylinders, so I don't think we would have won the race even with a smooth run. Hopefully we have all the kinks worked out now and Moon will be firing on all cylinders next Friday. It's our first Pro rodeo in Yuma.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

A Long Day

Today ended up being a lot longer day than I anticipated...but one of those days I wouldn't have missed for the world. Earlier this week, Wade asked me if I wanted to come with him to a team penning he and some friends have started putting on at the Wild Horse Pass Arena at the 'new' Rawhide Old West Town. These guys put on a weekly team roping there on Sunday and they decided to see if a team penning would take hold too. The turn-out was a little light, but once it catches on, I think it will be a success.
It's a jaunt from Mikey's to Rawhide...They are on opposite sides of the valley actually. I don't know the exact mileage, but it's probably 60 miles. When we got there, we unloaded horses, tied them off with their breakfasts and loaded steers in the trailer and headed to another arena with them. These guys provide roping stock for several of the local associations and we were delivering fresh steers to this other roping. When we get to this other arena (about an hour away), we dump that load of steers, load a  bunch of the 'practice' steers in the trailer and head back to the arena we are going to be competing in. When we get back, we dump that load of steers and run them through the chute so the guys can affix numbers to their sides.

(Whewww)...Not that any of that was hard work. Wade and The Rancher pretty much did the loading and unloading. I know when people have a system and I know to just stay out of their way. While the guys were getting everything set up, I started warming up horses. Frosty warmed up good, so I warmed up Wade's horse and then moved to Moon. Moon is still being a jerk. Not only was he a pill to warm up, the whole time I was riding Frosty, Moon was in the back pen, pacing, whinnying, pulling on the leadrope and half rearing on the fence. Although it was really my intention to just work Frosty lightly and focus on Moon...

I decided Moon could just stand back there and pitch his fit. He KNOWS better. But it did get me to thinking...So I texted Mikey and asked her to pick me up a tube of UlcerGard while she was in town working. Weeks ago, I had asked a friend to order me the powder Omaprozaline, which I fed to Moon most of last summer and noticed a marked improvement in his attitude, but she kept forgetting to order it for me, so I don't have any with me. :-(. Of course, I always worry about ulcers with Moon, but besides a crappy attitude, he usually goes off his grain and he has been cleaning up every bit of his hay and grain, so I'm not sure it that's the problem or not. We'll see because I gave him a 1/2 tube of UlcerGard tonight and that should calm his stomach. If he is still bonkers tomorrow at the barrel race, it's just the beautiful weather that is giving him 'spring fever'. 

So anyway...Frosty got his work-out and then some today. Holy crap did he work good...

He was only mildly hesitant to ease into a herd of horned cattle (which he has never done before) and when he locked on...He LOCKED ON! We got a lot of practice runs in. Because of the very few riders, I got to practice running some steers down the fence and turning them back (a la Working Cowhorse)...Frosty was ruu-nningg (Forest Gump accent) after those steers, I could push him past one and he was only missing the turnback by a stride. That is freaking phenomenal for a horse that until just recently was terrified of pretty much ANYTHING that looked at him. LOL. The last steer we worked was just a random unnumbered steer and it did NOT want to leave the herd. Frosty got down and dirty and worked his butt off to get that steer to cross the line. I had NO IDEA the horse had that much heart and try in him. He's always been such a big baby. I think my 'baby' has grown up. He was making some incredible moves on that steer and I could hear Wade and everybody watching, commenting and cheering him on. The big yella horse made me PROUD today!!!

After that, we were done. Frosty was done in.  He would have kept going if I had asked, but he was dripping and panting. I cooled him out, tied him in the the meantime, Moon was still being very unhappy in a separate pen....but was over his total meltdown. Standing there and letting him have his fit was exactly what he needed. While the ponies rested, we all headed over to Rawhide to have lunch. On the way out, we coerced poor Wade to take a ride on the donkeys...

ONLY Wade!!! OMG...It was too funny. He was doing the queen wave and posing for the tourists who lined up to take pictures. Meanwhile the rest of us were attempting to get him to reach up and rake the donkey with his spurs. See how long his legs are? They touched in front of the donkey's chest. LMAO...These guys are tooo freaking funny!!

You would think our day was done right?

Oh no. We had to load steers. Take that load back to the arena we had been at in the morning. Unload. Sort. Then strip all of the horn protectors off of all of the roping steers. Sort again. Pen everything. Load up a load in the trailer. Back to Rawhide. Unload. Pen. And thennnnn....We got to load our horses and head for home. We left the house at 6am, was on the run the entire day and got home at 7pm. I'm exhausted and this is how hard these guys run most of the time. Sheeezzz...I don't think I could keep up day after day.

It was the funnest day I have had in forever. I did good too. I didn't embarrass myself in front of Wade or The Rancher. Frosty did phenomenal...and even if Moon was a goob...he didn't destroy anything or start throwing himself down or anything. So all in all...It was a hugely successful day. I think Wade and The Rancher might even let me come around again. ;-)

Friday, February 1, 2013

Just A Recording Away...

The realtor and I did the final walk-through on the new place today. I am even more excited about it than before. It's way nicer than I remember. 

This is the front of the house...

The backside...

Looking west. Our property line runs all the way to those electric poles. The horse set-up will go just to the left of where I stood to take this picture (there's already water and electric there) and eventually an arena along that west fenceline....

This is looking north toward Mikey's place. Maybe 40 minutes or so cutting through the desert. All of the bare dirt in the picture is part of the property...

Standing in the dining room and looking into the living room...

The little office area off of the living room. I will put some curtains on a sliding rod and then when guests come to stay, there will be an extra bedroom. :-)...

Detail in the living room...

Looking into the kitchen and there is a breakfast nook in the back. The washer/dryer hook-ups and another door (which leads out to the driveway and garage) is back at the far wall and just off to the left is a nice little pantry/storage closet...

This hasn't been as 'issue-free' of a process as what we had hoped. The title company was horrible and I think we are going to have to have our personal attorney send a letter to the 'well manager' for the shared well. The bitch made up a $400 'transfer' fee and is saying that our share of the well costs is $75 per month. Because the title company was so horrible about doing their job, none of this came to light until the day of closing. WTF??? We paid the fee just to close the deal, but you can bet I will NOT be letting the well manager slide on her BS. That's one of the wonderful perks of having an attorney on retainer. LOL. ;-)

We was prepared for the recording to be done today, but the bank apparently forgot to get something notarized, so it will be Monday and then the place is ours. Free and Clear!! Whooo-hoooo

I have to say, as excited as I am about getting moved over there...I have enjoyed hanging out at Mikey's so much that I will be very sad to leave. The Fearless Farrier crew is just that freaking awesome!!!