Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

I found the original longer version of the Christmas Budweiser Clydesdales. Twice as long, definitely worth seeing again.


Friday, December 23, 2011

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Back home

I made it to the barn and back.  The only place I had any trouble was on my own street.  I got stuck just yards from my driveway, luckily I was able to back out of that one and try again.  And coming home I got high centered on the dam that the snow plows throw up.  I thought I had a path through it, but nooooooooo.   That one took about 10 people to get me out of.  Heavy little car, sunk down in the snow.  The roads around town were floating in mag chloride so even though the temps were in the 20s they were mostly wet, snow packed here and there.  I noticed that the E/W streets were more snow packed than the N/S streets.  Weird. 
Nina was glad to see her beet pulp.  The snow was deep and drifted at the barn, fortunately it was still powder cuz it was up to my waist around her gate.  The sun is suppose to be out tomorrow, I sure hope so.

a better view of winter

This looks like more fun than rush hour on C-470.



Yuck.  And it is still coming down.  My street is full of snow, you can't see sidewalks, driveways or anything.  yuck!
I am trying to move my lesson this morning to tomorrow and put off going to the barn until mid afternoon after they have had some time to work on the roads. 
I have lived in Colorado for 30 years without a 4 wheel drive, the last two winters are making me rethink that. 

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


on a cold cold cold day.  32 degrees and the wind blowing.  He is a sweetheart.  He is up on his toes, very concerned about everything going on around him, but not the least bit spooky.  (Unlike a nameless black mare who was spooking at her own blanket.)

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

screwballs in the cold

Yesterday when I got to the barn it was cold and had just started snowing.  Nina was in a sheet because the day before was too warm for a blanket, but she was cold and needed her big Rambo. 
I had been going to get her out for a little exercise, but the ground was frozen solid and slippery so I decided to pass.  I also decided to just throw her blanket on over the sheet which turned out to save some rodeo time.  I threw the blanket up on Nina - I have to throw, she is 16.1 and I am 5-5 so it has to land UP there - and she skittered around and flung it on the ground. 
Not happy, I picked it up, made a slower approach and she not only did it again, but pulled away from me and ran from one end of her pen to the other, sliding into the ends. 
Now I was pissed.  She has been wearing this blanket since I got her.   I picked up the blanket, grabbed her lead rope, shanked her a couple of times and proceeded to do some yelling.  It has been a long long time since I yelled at her and I went on for quite a while about her parentage, appearance, intelligence and general behavior.  She finally decided that she was more impressed with my yelling than she was skittish about the blanket and I managed to get it on her without killing either one of us.
She was still giving me the evil eye while she ate her beet pulp and I stomped back to the car.

Monday, December 19, 2011

I know you are waiting for a weather report...

Saturday was nice, Sunday was beautiful.
Today - not so much.  27 degrees, snowing, blowing, icy icy roads.
Fruit loop of a horse spooking away from her own blanket. 
Glad I am home for the evening, going to watch Terra Nova and ignore the weather.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

contest for a wow! hunt coat on Get-My-Fix

If you want to enter a contest for a Hayward Hunt Coat, just visit Get-My-Fix and find out how to get entered.
Since my hunt coat is over 20 years old, I have my fingers crossed.  Here is one of the yummy options:

without words

we finally got a break from the weather

It was not the 50s that the weatherman promised, only low 40s but the wind quit blowing and the sun was out so it was pretty nice.  I had a couple of lessons to teach and we played with the new horse, who is a sweetheart and went to the feed store. 
Somehow in there Nina did not get ridden, hoping for time today.  And the better weather still wasn't enough to melt any of the ice that is everywhere. 
Hope everyone is having a good weekend.

Friday, December 16, 2011

more babbling... weather....

I am really discouraged with our weather.  Today I went out to the barn and the sun was shining, but it was 35degrees and the wind was blowing and the ground is frozen solid and covered with sheets of ice. 
I put Nina in a round pen and couldn't lunge her, half of the pen was a sheet of ice.   The outdoor arena is ankle deep frozen mud.  
Nina has had some time off because of her sore foot and she is simply not safe to ride without being lunged a little in this cold weather and there is no place to lunge. 
It's not the barn, they keep working the arena and breaking up the ground in the round pens, hoping that something will melt or dry or do something.
This is so unusual for here.  We have had old snow and ice - two weeks and more - on the ground.  We never do that here.  If you have ever been to the Denver area in winter you have seen the biggest snow falls just melt off in cold weather because of how intense the sun is.
But this year the wind is blowing non stop and it is offsetting the sunshine. 
I was determined to ride this winter and found myself just spending some time with a cranky Nina.  And I was totally frozen any time I got in the wind.
If this goes on through January and February - when it is SUPPOSE to be cold - I will have to learn how to ride all over again.
Vent over.....

more babbling, new horse....

The new CANTER horse arrived a little after 7am.  He left his awful track name of Admiral Dumyat at the Maryland state line and will be known now as 'Fawkes.'  When she told me about the name changed I thought she said 'Fox' because of his color.  I will have to find out more about the name.
He has a much prettier head than his field photo showed.  A little ewe neck, a little thick through the throat latch, all typical racehorse on pasture, upside down muscle.  Wait to see what he looks like a year from now.
He was known on the track as 'The Orange Horse' and judging by his winter coat I have to agree.  I wonder how orange the summer coat is?  Well, he will be easy to spot on cross country!

just babbling today....

I was reading Year with My Horse about the Hags on Nags holiday party. 
I suddenly remembered our over-the-hill group at the barn where I learned to jump.  A bunch of us started scheduling trail rides or trying to coordinate our jumping lessons together.  We called ourselves OFOF - Old Farts Over Fences. 
It got so bad that the trainer started putting OFOF lessons on the posted schedule.  She said it gave everyone fair warning.  HEY!!!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

new CANTER horse!

I am so excited, you would think it was for me.  I just like new toys!
Remember my client who got screwed over by the local (new) trainer with the nice TB, who changed the price after they had a deal?
Well, that client found a horse on CANTER that she really liked, and she was taking a business trip near the breeder's farm where he was hanging out so she went to see him.
He arrives at the barn on Friday!  He has been a pasture horse for a couple of years so he is a little rough looking, but he is built like a jumper.  His breeder says they bred way too many mares to his sire, all of them were flops on the track but lots of them have done well in show jumping and eventing.  (This is also the story of Scotty's sire, remind me sometime).  I wouldn't call him a total flop, he did win some money, just not enough to pay his way. 
He is on his way, arrives at a to be determined time on Friday and starts his new life.
His present life includes rolling in the mud.  His past life included some winning shots at the finish line.  See one here:

Nina's haircut

It has been so cold since I clipped Nina that she is in a blanket most of the time.   So here are her (delayed) pictures of her haircut.   It has been too icy to ride so I could have waited on the clip job, but at least it was nice to get it done on a nice day.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

and to create a little balance

Here is a new organization with the goal of educating people about the Thoroughbred horse.  The more educated the public is, the less chance of people trying to beat Thoroughbreds into acting like Quarter Horses.  And the more likely rehomed OTTBs will find the right new home.

Retired Racehorse Training Project website

and here they are on Facebook

here is a gag-me article

Horse training and horse riding is nowadays all about the gadget that can fix your lack of ability to ride your horse.  Don't take lessons, don't learn how to ride a horse into your hand or otherwise learn any horsemanship.  Just pull its head down, put on some bigger spurs and voila! you too are ready to show!

In defense of people who use a PROPERLY ADJUSTED running martingale - when it is properly adjusted it cannot be used to pull the horse's head down, it does not engage until the horse is above the bit and its purpose is to help manage a horse that will go above the bit and bolt or will knock you out of the saddle when it gets excited.  It is, in my opinion, a safety device and not a training device.

However, The American Quarter Horse Association is advocating martingales short enough to pull a head down (also known as a training fork) and drawreins in the hands of people who cannot possible know how to use them because getting the head DOWN is the total goal of training horses these days.
Excuse me while I go throw up and here is the link from the AQHA. 

Monday, December 12, 2011

Seriously Horsing Around

If you are not following the blog, Seriously Horsing Around, you should be.
Today she featured a coupon for $5 off SafeGuard.  
Awesome!  Thank you Bethkay!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Jim Graham Cross Country Clinic Part II

Here is a nice video of Jim Graham showing a BN horse and rider how to be calm on cross country. Just another day at work, ho-hum. Very nicely done. The wind noise is distracting but it is worth listening to.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

cranky in the cold - a grade horse rant

Since I haven't been on a horse in a week I have been getting my horse fix on some of the forums, chat rooms and blogs. 
I keep running into something that I think is a symptom of our extremely shallow, learn what's on the surface, everybody needs to be 'special' society.

When people are chatting about their horses, and yes, I do understand that everyone loves their own horse, the descriptions go something like.... my warmblood who is a Percheron, TB, QH cross; my warmblood who is Friesen, QH, Oldenberg and I'm not sure what else; my warmblood who is part TB and we think part draft.

These are not Warmbloods.  I suppose you could call them warmbloods in the dictionary definition of the roots of the modern Warmblood. 
These are GRADE horses.  GRADE horse is not a dirty word.  It is, or was, the accepted descriptive term for a horse that was not a purebred, eligible for registration with a breed registry.
Now all of these grade horses have a registry, if you can't find one then you make one up, breed a bunch of foals and voila!  create a breed!

Here is my problem with this - it encourages people to breed grade horses (who now have a breed name and a breed registry) and if you don't think that these horses are the stars of the FUGLY blog, you just aren't paying attention. 

In the dog world, legitimate breeders are very quick to point out to gullible buyers that there is no consistency in Peek-a-Poos, Labradoodles or any other made up cross breed because they are not being carefully bred by people with a vision of the future and a GOOD education in genetics, they are being bred by idiots trying to make a buck off of people who want to be 'special' and will pay a small fortune for a mix breed that they could get for nearly free from a rescue or dog pound.  

We are condoning the same 'get rich quick with your newly created horse breed' AND filling up the kill pens with pathetic, ugly horses who did not ask for their sad fate.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

cold cold cold

It is almost noon.  I wonder if we will break into the double digits by noon?  Apparently DIA is at a roasting 12 degrees but it is 8 here. 
daily disclaimer: I hate winter

Monday, December 5, 2011

weather report - 11 degrees

ELEVEN flippin degrees at the barn at 2pm with the sun shining.
Since it is Colorado sun at about 6,000 ft, it was evaporating the snow, not melting it. 

Nina seems to be handling it well, all snuggled up in her big ole Rambo.  She wants out of her run but everything is covered with ice and way too slippery.  She would be happier if we just went about our normal routine, the cold doesn't bother her.  ME, however, a little different.  I am not hanging out with her for very long at 11 degrees.  She was a little miffed but agreed to eat her beet pulp.
I think the high for the last 3 day has been around 20.  Tomorrow it is supposed to get near freezing - heat wave!!!
daily disclaimer: I hate winter

Saturday, December 3, 2011

my house will get cleaned

Stuck inside most of the time.  We were suppose to warm up after the cold Thursday/Friday.  The forecast was for up, up and up.  Nope, we are stuck,  20s during the day and single digits at night for a few more days.  ugh! 

Thursday, December 1, 2011

A little lucky in the cold

I got a little lucky today.  This morning I was watching the snow fall in my yard, piling up on the street, the wind blowing hard.  I was dreading my drive to the barn.  But I hate to make Nina go without her beet pulp and I really needed to put a winter blanket on her for tonight.  Yesterday evening it was too warm for anything but a sheet but tonight it is supposed to go down to 4 degrees and with the wind blowing it is going to be COLD.  So I really needed to make a barn run.
Surprise, when I left the house the roads were wet but not snow or ice.
I made it to the barn where Nina acted like a fruit loop while I changed blankets.  She finally skidded into a fence and that sobered her up for a minute.  Dumped her beet pulp in the feed bucket, gave her an unappreciated pat on the neck and left.
Right now I am in Starbucks making use of their WiFi to do some work.  I need to get home before rush hour, relax for the evening and watch The Mentalist.  Have I mentioned I hate winter?
Have a good evening.

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