Friday, November 19, 2010


Well, we might be getting a pony and donkey from my mom's friend who doesn't want hers anymore because her son lost interest.

I do not want them. And frankly, we can't really afford them right now. That's two more vet bills, two more farrier bills, two more mouths to feed. And our pasture isn't big enough for two more critters. I told my mom that if the friend doesn't want them, she can just sell them. We need more horses like we need a hole in the head. We don't even have anywhere to put them! There's no more room in the barn. And we only have one pasture. We'd have to fence off part of the back yard, but that isn't an option right this minute because the ground is frozen. And they would have no shelter. We would have to buy a run-in shed, and those things aren't cheap. I just don't see how it would work.

I know my mom has always wanted a donkey, but now is just not the right time.

Please, just say no.

Things are not good at the old barn.

I am so glad to be done with that place. I cannot even express how much I do not miss it. And I know it's none of my concern now, but I'm really worried for Christy and Lorena. Management has gone to Hell (what else is new?) even worse than before and apparently, the BO suddenly thinks that Lorena owes her a ton of money for board. Lorena has always worked to pay off board, and payed for all her feed and supplies herself (like I did). That was always the agreement, but now the BO has it in her head that Lorena owes a year's worth of full-price board. Why? That's anyone's guess. Christy told me the two of them got into a huge fight over it and they're not speaking to each other. Poor Christy is stuck in the middle of it. God knows I love Lorena and have all the respect in the world for her, but she does tend to go off on tangents and overstep her bounds. When she gets angry, she doesn't always think straight. Therefor, she says things she shouldn't and doesn't know when to shut up. I don't know how much more the BO will tolerate.

The thing is, Lorena is the most experienced and knowledgable person there. She organizes all the events and shows, she helps everyone out, she gives lessons and trains a little. That barn would fall apart without her. I don't think the BO appreciates it at all, and I can understand why Lorena gets so fed up. I've been there, too.

I've known the BO for almost 6 years. I know how impossible she is. And I honestly think she's suffering from some mental illness. If she had any sense at all, she would have hired Christy or Lorena as the official manager a long time ago so she wouldn't have to manage things herself. She just can't do it herself. It's even more of a shame because there is such a wonderful group of people there. Ever since Cynthia and Mitch left, they've gotten new boarders and for the most part, they're all very nice.

There is one guy who sounds shady, though. Lorena tells me he "trains" his horse with a tree branch. I'm not sure what all that means, but it doesn't sound good. Of course, the BO doesn't mind at all. If she's even aware of it.

Sigh. It's a Hell of a place to board, let me tell you. I feel so bad for them. I wish Christy and Lorena would look for another barn.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

I need to ride.

Seriously. I haven't ridden since July. How sad is that?

But lately, riding has become more of a chore than fun. I don't know why. I think I just need to get off my arse and go saddle Vic up.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

The perfect hypothetical foal...

It's one of my many goals in life to breed one -and only one- foal. I've been thinking about it for quite some time. Someday, when I have the time, experience, and financial means, I want to breed, raise, and train one foal that I would keep forever. I want to be there when it's born and be able to spend time with it every day, and train it to lead, tie, load, bathe, pony, lift its feet, and expose it to as many experiences as I can before the time comes to ride it.

I don't have any particular breed in mind. It depends on what I plan on doing with the foal. It's going to be a long way down the road, and I might not still be interested in showing by that time. I can see myself just trail riding or maybe going out west and doing those 3-day trail rides in the mountains. That would be sweet.

I know I'll either want an English-type or a gaited horse. Or an English horse that's well broke for trails. Either way, I like my horses tall and husky. I've always thought that a Morgan/ Andalusian cross would be gorgeous.

I would breed this mare (JMF Wild Side from Rafter Bar D Morgans):

To this stallion (Fandango Del Sol from Rothrock Andalusians):

Yep. That would be my dream foal. Someday... hehe.

BTW, if you're ever interested in Andalusians, check out Rothrock. I've met Cara and have seen their stallions in person many times. They are hands-down the best in the business. ;)

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Feeling a bit down.

My dad is growing tired of the horses because of the financial strain, which I completely understand. However, it scared the bejeebers out of me the other day when he told me he wants to get rid of Norman. He is not a horse person, and he seems to think that horses are like motorcycles; just sell them or trade them in when you don't want to deal with them anymore.

I feel extremely guilty not being able to take more of the financial load off of my parents, but as of yet, I haven't had any luck finding work. I really do understand where my dad is coming from, but the thought of parting with Norman scares me to death. I hear too many horror stories of horses ending up in bad situations once they're sold. It's even more unsettling because Norman isn't exactly the epitome of a dream horse. He's green broke and needs a serious tune-up. Not many people want a 17 hand project pony. If he had a show record and was really well trained, it would be a different story. I wouldn't worry so much if that was the case. But it's not. Finding out that one of my horses ended up with a negligent or abusive owner would be my worst nightmare.

Also, he's been tossed around between homes quite a bit. We bought him at 18 months old, and he'd already had 2 owners before that. I would hate to do that to him again. My dad doesn't think it makes any difference to him, but I beg to differ.

I'm scouring the internet and every bulletin board in town for a working student position with a good trainer. I'm hoping against hope to get an apprenticeship under a dressage trainer where I could bring one of the horses with me. That would at least make it a little easier on my parents. If I found something like that, I would bring Norman and leave Victor with my mother, at least in the beginning. It would make more sense to bring Norman because he needs the training and experience, and because Victor would be easier for my mother to take care of.

It's kind of aggravating though, because my parents want me to find a job and go to college (and I agree with them there), but at the same time, they're smothering me and doing whatever they can to keep me at home. I think they're afraid I'm going to take off and never come back. Which is ridiculous. I cannot stay at home forever. I need to do what I have to do to make sure my horses are cared for and find a job.

On a lighter note, my mother has apparently met a trainer that could help me get a therapeutic riding instructor certification. I would have to start out volunteering, but that's fine with me. I'm all for it.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

I don't know what I'm going to do with the little bugger.

My mom loves her horse, but she can't handle him worth a crap. He can be a little obnoxious, seeing as he's young and still slightly colt-ish. But it's ridiculous when it comes to my mom treating him like a delicate little kitten. Drives me nuts. Norman is a horse. A fairly gargantuan one. You won't hurt his feelings if you give him a spanking when he deserves it.

We've only ridden together once since we moved, and the horses both did fairly well. Except Norman kept dragging my mother into the tall grass on the side of the trail, and mom doesn't have the heart to be firm and correct him. She's stuck in the "passenger" frame of mind. She also keeps anticipating him doing something naughty, even when he's being good. That fall off of another horse years back didn't do anything for her confidence. I want to go out and work with Musclehead sometime today, but it's been too beastly hot the last couple of weeks.

My goal is to be able to load the horses up and go on trail rides with our friends from the barn and not have any hassle. Victor's pretty good about it. He's a very good traveler. And Norman's getting better and better about loading. I'm just worried about him behaving once we're on the trail. I really need to put some miles on him. But it would work a lot better to have another horse ride with us and keep him calm, and my mom can't ride Victor unless she gets over this ridiculous nervousness.

We've been talking about possibly getting a third horse sometime down the road. If we do, it'll be a 12-15 year old Walker or Foxtrotter. But that won't be for a while, if it happens. I would rather spend the time and money getting Norman more trained before we bring another horse into the picture. And who knows? Once Norman is better behaved, we might not even want another one.

I've been asked why we don't just sell Norman and get another horse. Well, because 1] with the market the way it is, we would take a hit money-wise, especially since we paid way too much for him in the first place 2] because he isn't very marketable the way he is at the moment, and I would be scared to death of him ending up in a bad situation and 3] most importantly, because I made a commitment to this horse and I have no intention of walking away. When I buy an animal, I keep it forever. We've had him since he was 18 months old, and he was my first horse. I can't even picture seeing a different horse in his stall.

He's also a really pretty lawn ornament. ;]

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

How important is your relationship?

For me, the connection between horse and rider is everything. If I don't click with my horse, it isn't even worth having one because it takes all the enjoyment right out of it. I suppose there are a million people who would dispute that, and they wouldn't necessarily be wrong. I think it boils down to why you have horses in the first place.

To some people, mainly avid competitors, horses are a means to an end. They need horses to compete in the sports they enjoy, and that's as far as it goes. They don't need to "get along with" their horse in order to love equestrian activities. I'm not saying they mistreat their animals- far from it. But they have little to no emotional attachment to them. It's a business relationship, so to speak.

On the other end of the spectrum, you have the people who covet their horses' affection above anything else. To Hell with the glory of being a successful competitor or winning a case full of rosettes if it's done with a horse that you don't connect with. It doesn't matter how athletic or well trained the horse is if your personalities clash, it's just not fun.

And I'm sure there are gray areas in between the two.

I would fall under the second category. I value my horses not because they're expensive investments, but because they're my companions. If my horses aren't happy and we don't enjoy each other's company, what's the point of having them? I don't want a horse that I feel detached from, or one that wants nothing to do with me. Again, what would be the point?

My old BO offered to let me show Harley, her Quarter Horse, but I turned it down. I don't really like that horse and he doesn't care for me, either. Granted, he's much more docile and easier to ride than Victor. But he's not my Victor. It wouldn't have meant anything. And it has nothing to do with familiarity, because I've know Harley a lot longer than I've known Victor.

And it doesn't necessarily have to be your own horse that you click with. Reba and I were two peas in a pod. =)

So tell me, do you value a purely athletic and successful horse, or one that is more of a good friend? Or are you somewhere in between?

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Photos! The horses' first day at home.

I know these are long overdue. I believe they were taken May 1st... They got a kick out of the neighbor's goats. XDD

I can't believe how sparse the pasture was. The grass has really grown well with all the rain we've had. The dirt areas in the pictures are now almost completely covered. =)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Just got back from my second lesson

And I blacked out halfway through and had to quit early. I'm shocked at how out of shape I am. Yes, it was hot out, but I used to be able to maintain a working trot for an hour straight in this weather without a problem. It's so incredibly frustrating. I feel like a blob when I'm on the horse. It feels terrible. Kudos to poor Hershey for putting up with my flabbiness with such a patient attitude. He's a pretty cool horse. Always such a gentleman. ;)

But... Ugghh. I've never had to stop early before. I'm exceedingly mad at myself. Lorena would be so disappointed if she saw that. I know exactly what she'd say, too. "How the Hell could you be tired?! I taught you better than that, Miss Thang!"

Yep. That's what she'd say.

I need to start riding my own horses. Victor has gotten fat. He and I are a couple of lard asses right now. What a pair we make. XDDD

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

I don't know what to think of this place.

My mom and I found a lesson barn about fifteen minutes away from our house. They breed Paints and do mostly roping, WP, and HUS. The trainer said there are about 100 horses on the property. The facility is very nice and most of the horses looked really good, but I did see a couple of skinny broodmares and one horse that was a bag of bones and had clumps of fur falling out. I have no idea what the story is behind those few horses. I don't know if she's rehabbing them or what. The stalls were kept immaculate and all the horses had food in front of them. The owner/trainer seems to really know what she's doing.

I had a lesson with her today on her $30,000 Paint gelding, which was the most expensive horse I've ever ridden! The lesson went well and it was a whole new experience learning to ride a WP/HUS horse. He was trained to respond completely off of leg aids, which was really cool. My legs are going to hate me tomorrow, but it was worth it. I have another lesson scheduled for the same time next week.

The barn isn't as laid-back as my old boarding barn. Maybe that's why it feels so weird to me. And I get the impression that the people there are strictly riders, not horsemen. The horse was saddled for me and she didn't even want me to rub him down afterward. Which is okay for me because I already know how to do those things, but what about beginners? I get the impression that she only teaches people how to ride, and not how to take care of a horse.

I don't know. I'm interested to see what happens with the skinny horses. I don't know how you can have dozens of horses that look like they're ready for a show, and then have ones that look like poop. If things don't improve, I'm going to quit. I'll just have to wait and see.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

A few photos

These are some old photos of the new farmette, taken before we moved in. These are all I have until I can figure out what's wrong with my computer.

Here's the barn:
The pasture:

Part of the back area, which would be great for another pasture if my parents would let me fence it off. I'm still working on that...

Alas, the best pictures are on my camera. We've been doing tons of landscaping and whatnot.

On another note, having only two horses has presented a problem: they're herd bound. I've never had that issue with them before. It doesn't help that they're a pair bond. Even before we moved, they were always side-by-side. I've only ridden three times since we moved. I rode once with my mom and they did fine as long as they were together. But if I take Victor out of sight, Norman goes nuts. That's why I really want to fence off another turnout area, so I can separate them for a few hours a day. I'm pretty sure I can break them of it if I can just make another pasture. Victor isn't too bad, he only gets upset when Norman starts running the fence line.

I rode him a couple nights ago and he threw a fit when I took him too far away from the pasture. It didn't bother me (I'm used to his tantrums), but it scared the bejeebers out of my mother. Now she wants to get me a new horse. *facepalm* Like Victor's hissy fits are anything new? He'll calm down with more riding. He was the same way when I first bought him and tried to take him out trail riding at the old barn. He eventually just gave up and settled down to the point where we could hack out alone without any drama. It just takes a lot of time and patience with him.

Other than that, not much is going on. *sigh*

I miss Reba so much. :'(

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

For some odd reason...

My computer isn't letting me upload photos from my camera. I'll post pics as soon as I figure out what the problem is.

I have a gazillion photos that refuse to get onto my computer and it might drive me insane. *twitch*

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Sorry for my major hiatus...

Things have been seriously chaotic around here. But hey! Guess what!

My mom and I got completely and utterly fed up and the boarding stable. Things went from bad to worse and we just couldn't stand it. Ugh. It makes my queasy just thinking about it.

My mom and I have also been wanting our own horse property for years. And we've been "window shopping" for eons. The rest of the family was pretty much against moving until my mom found this one place online. We convinced Dad to at least go look at it, and voila! He loved it.

Long story short, we moved! And we now have our beasties at home. I can't tell you what a relief it is to be free of that hell hole. The horses seem much happier as well. It's just the two of them in our pasture, so there's no bickering or bullying, especially at feeding time. It's wonderful.

We have a 2-stall barn with a hay loft and a smallish pasture that's just right for our two guys. There's also about six acres in back that we can ride in. No arena, but that's a small price to pay. =) It's wonderful being out in the country, too.

Pictures are coming soon!

Now, I also have some bad news. Major bad news, at least to me it was. Lorena just informed me today that Mitch and Cynthia are leaving the barn and taking Reba with them. I want to throw up. They're taking their two horses, Jack the pony and Mitch's [totally bitchy, obnoxious, dangerous] TWH mare along with Reba to Cynthia's mother's place. They're putting up a fence as we speak. There's no barn or anything. Just a pasture. That means no shelter during storms or in the dead of winter when wind chills reach 20 below. That sounds wonderful for a 25 year old horse, doesn't it? I'm sure Reba will just love getting the shit beaten out of her by Mitch's horse and being fed moldy cattle hay.

[/end sarcasm]

I'm scared to death for Reba. She's old, she has back problems, and Cynthia won't give a flying fuck. It's all the more frustrating because I'm powerless to do anything about it. I hope she enjoyed the bath I gave her right before I left, because it will probably be her last. I saw her today and took a piece of her mane with me since I don't know if I'll get another chance. I might never see her again. This sucks.

The BO is pretty irked about it, too. She and Cynthia were supposedly such good buddies, and now Stank Bitch Cynthia is taking a paying boarder right out from under her. Yeah, they were real pals.

She's not taking Reba because she cares about her, she's taking her to stick it to everyone and because she doesn't want to lose her toy. The BO's place is by no means perfect, but at least there are people there who look out for all the horses and clean up after people like Mitch and Cynthia. However, I am glad that Cristy and Lorena won't have to put up with the garbage anymore. I know they were as miserable as I was. But I'm hoping the situation will be a lot better with Mitch and Cynthia gone. Nonetheless, I'm ecstatic to be done with the place.

*sigh* So yeah. That's my juicy news. Lord have mercy on poor Reba. I'm really going to miss her.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Considering my options...

Show season is coming up. Who else is nervous?

I've been doing Hunt Seat for the past three years and I've found that I suck at it. I can walk and trot around in circles and that's about as far as my riding skills go. It doesn't help that I haven't ridden in months and I've lost all my riding muscles. I also can't jump worth a bucket of spit. The tiniest cross rail is a huge challenge to me. Not that I don't love hunter/jumpers, I'm just not good at it.

I've been wanting to switch to dressage for a long time. I think both my horses and I would be better suited for it. But I don't have any dressage equipment, my horses have no experience with it, and I don't know any good trainers. In my area, equestrians are few and far between.

I will find a trainer eventually. ;) If I got good at dressage, I figured my hunter/jumper skills would probably improve. Until then I'll just stick to halter classes and trail riding.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Some things really make you count your blessings.

There's a really old Arabian mare at the barn who isn't doing well at all. She's having problems with laminitis and she can barely walk. But she's alert and has a good appetite. She's actually Mitch's horse, and I was pleasantly surprised to find out that he's been taking good care of her and keeping in touch with the vet. I think it's finally sinking in that horses aren't play toys and once they're dead, they're gone for good. Cynthia is another story, but at least Mitch is starting to see the light. I hope.

Decision time sucks. I hate losing pets. It never gets easier. I'm grateful every day that my horses are strong and healthy. I hope they stay that way for a very long time yet.

I'll never understand people like Cynthia. Horses have comparatively short lifespans anyway, so why would you want to speed up that process? Most people would have their pets live forever if it was possible.

Saturday, January 30, 2010


The vet was out the other day to do teeth and coggins and I had him look at Vic's old injury. It's this hard plate-thing on his left hip that was from being kicked by another horse when he was a foal. It had been weighing on me for some time and I was worried that it might start to bother him as he ages. All these horrible scenarios were running through my mind. What if it does cause problems and he's lame for the rest of his life? How would I keep him fit if I couldn't exercise him? What if I had to retire him at such a young age? Could I afford to keep a horse that's going to wrack up tons of vet bills? What would happen if I ever had to sell him, God forbid?

However, the vet said it's just scar tissue and he doesn't think it'll ever affect him. THANK GOD.

That made my day. I've never been more glad to feel silly for worrying over a small, superficial thing. There's nothing like the relief you feel when you find out you worried for nothing.

I've also learned to never buy a horse without a pre-purchase exam again. I don't know why we didn't have a vet check when we bought him. What if the owner had been lying about it? Definitely not a smart move on my part. Especially since she lied about his age and training. She told us he was eight years old and was trained for eventing. I only found out years later that he was actually only five at the time. Just a baby. Which explains why he was a naughty little schmuck when we brought him home. But it worked out for the best. Buying him was the best dumb thing I've ever done. Go figure.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Your early horse-crazy years

I don't remember exactly when I became obsessed with horses, but I remember having a closet full of equine merchandise from very early on. I had My Little Ponies (the original ones, not those new, stumpy, weird-looking critters), Fantasy Fillies, and a battery-powered Barbie horse, among other things. I still have the pink Fantasy Filly and the Barbie horse. I think I still have most of my toy horses, actually. My poor Barbie horse had a rough life. He used to have a long mane and tail, but I took scissors and cut it all off. I guess I thought it would grow back. Now he has a cropped mane and a little bobtail. Poor thing. He still works, though! I probably had around a hundred toy horses at one time, and I had names and personalities for all of them. O.o

Our old house was a small ranch on about an eighth of an acre and I thought I was going to keep a mini horse in the backyard. I thought if I got a little tiny horse, I could just put a leash and collar on him and walk him around like a dog. He would be about the size of a large dog, so no one would have a problem with it, right?

I after I accepted that keeping a pony in the backyard wasn't going to work, I upgraded to Breyer horses and used them as an outlet for my horseless-ness. I couldn't have a real horse, so I collected as many model ones as possible.

Now that I have my own Real Little Ponies, I'm not as enthusiastic about Breyers. That's probably a good thing because I don't have money for Breyers anymore! When I have thirty-five bucks laying around, it usually goes toward feed or the farrier. lol