Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Don't You Hate it When Folks Don't Heed the Signs?

I'm  really not sure what the sign says, but it's a great place to scratch my neck! 
Hey, move over, I was here first!
Burro Battles don't suppose that we have to obey the sign, do you?

What did you say? Did you say we were fine?

Alright, alright, alright already. We'll move if we really have to.

 Hey, wait. I can't move. Remember the saying, "Don't step on the crack or you'll break your mother's back!"

Hey lady, what you lookin' at? 
Ain't you never seen burros messing around on someone's front lawn before?

How 'bout opening your door? I'll come home with you!

We came across a small herd of wild burros in a driveway and in the street as we drove into Cripple Creek yesterday. They are so cute! Especially if they aren't on your own front lawn decimating your grass! Evidently the locals find them to be pests. The burros are corralled and fed through the winter months and released to wander during the better weather. This last little fellow came up to the truck to get a scritch on the forehead. Oh, how I wish we could have a few of these darling guys (or gals)!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Doc's Diatribe: One Little, Two Little, Three Little....I Can't Count That High

Today my Mrs. Owner took me out of the stall before I was even finished with my breakfast. Uh oh....I have that funny feeling that something's up. She tied me to the hitching rail and brushed me, washed my legs, cleaned my size twos and combed out my mane and tail. My Mrs. Owner took Pippin out and let him run free in the pasture - that's really unfair. I want to be with Pippin. I called to him and all he did was kick up his heels and run down to the best grass in the far corner. Hey, what about me? "Whinny!" I hope he saves some for me, "Whinny!" He can be such a little piggy! Uh, oh. My Mrs. Owner opened the door to the big white box that makes lots of noise when it moves really fast. I refused to go into the box. My Mrs. Owner said that was the wrong answer and made me trot in circles. Again, I refused to go into the box. After going around for a bit I finally decided I'd rather stand still in the big white box than trot in circles. So, in I went. But, surprise! There was some hay in there. Here was the rest of my breakfast. Nom, nom, nom. 

I munched my hay as we bumped and swayed. The wind coming in from the window blew bits of my hay all over. It went so fast, I couldn't even catch it. We stopped. And when I looked out, I wasn't at home anymore.

Not only that, there were a whole bunch of guys that looked almost like me tied to their big boxes that make lots of noise. What is this, some sort of club?! There were nine of us altogether. In this picture you can see my head over Sparky's rump. Missy is tied on the right of her trailer and you can see just a bit of Spooky behind her. Dijon is tied to the next trailer. There were Haffie's all over! Anybody watching this might think they were seeing double, or triple, or something.

My Mrs. Owner took this shot over her shoulder just before we had some excitement. The horse in the middle got really excited about the ride and put in a little buck. Then another buck. The horse behind her said, "Oh, Goody! I want to buck, too!" So they both bucked. They were really bad. Their Mrs. Owners fell off. I put my tail way up in the air and I snorted. I pranced around a bit. But, I didn't buck. Everyone got settled again and we went on for another 3 miles. The trail was pretty and went through meadows and woods. We went uphill and downhill.  I even hopped over a log.

 Finally, we stopped for lunch. I checked my Mrs. Owner's pockets to see if she had brought me anything to eat. There was nothing in there.
Bad, bad Mrs. Owner. 
Sad, sad Doc!

Oh, well, I was kinda tired anyway!

 We went on riding for another 3 miles or so. I was very brave. I walked through some water. Some of the other horses didn't want to go into the water. How silly. It was only a few inches deep. We had to wait for them. I was bored. Later we came across a big, big rock. A rock that big might hurt my Mrs. Owner or me. I jumped to the side and ran through some scrub oak to get away. My Mrs. Owner made me stop and go back and look at the rock. One of the riders behind me told my Mrs. Owner that he saw that rock jump at me so I was justified in trying to get away!

We headed back to the big boxes and with a little encouragement from some of the other Mrs. & Mr. Owners I hopped right in. After swaying and rattling and bumping for a while, I was magically back in my yard. Pretty soon I was in pasture telling Pippin all about my adventures, between mouthfuls of grass. He had left some for me. What a guy!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Control of Your Mind

So, I couldn't think of anything to post on the blog and it has been a while since I have posted. I was feeling the pressure. Then, I read Linda Benson's blog and discovered that there's an Eight Question Internet Tag game going around which asks readers to answer eight questions, and send it on to eight people. She had seen it on several sites and commented, "we've changed the rules a little." So, if you're reading this post *insert evil chuckle* ~ You're It!!

This reminds me of one of my son's T-shirts which states:

So, by dint of the fact that you are reading this, you are now charged with answering the questions if you care to play along. Let me know in a comment so we can read your answers!

Have fun!

1. If you could have a super power, what would you have? Why?

Teleportation. I love to travel but I hate to take the time to get from point A to point B. I'd love to be able to teleport myself, instantly, to a different place and perhaps even to a different time. I've always been fascinated with books, like L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time or TV shows like The Voyagers or Quantum Leap and movies like Back to the Future.

2. Who is your style icon?

You have got to be kidding! If there is anyone out there who could be my style icon, I feel so sorry for her! Since I retired my style (if I had any to begin with) has become frozen in time and has become more Goodwill or ARC Thrift than anything else. Not that those are my favorite fashion shops, but the clothes I can usually be found wearing look like they came straight off the racks of a resale shop, a very low-end resale shop! My jeans are comfortably worn, with frayed threads hanging at the heels. My shirts have permanent stains, and since I lost a fair amount of weight, most are far too large. I have one black dress and a few pair of black pants that can be worn with a few hold-over jackets to carry them through different seasons. I would love to be able to wear my Crocs or Ariat barn boots with everything, but alas I guess I have a bit of fashion sense, or some sort of guilt that requires that I wear something a bit finer with my dress or nice(r) pants - so I squish some very low heels or sandals on my calloused feet. At times I think I'm a candidate for 'What Not to Wear' but unless I do gain the power of teleportation I have few places to go and besides,  my horses just don't care what I wear and wouldn't think to nominate me for the show anyway!

3. What is your favorite quote?

"Today well lived makes every yesterday a dream of happiness,
And every tomorrow a vision of hope!
Look well, therefore, to this day."

From "Salutation to the Dawn" by Kalidasa

4. What is the best compliment you've ever received?

Tough one.....maybe my husband recently telling me that I am in better shape, with more muscle definition, than I have been at any point in our marriage (close to 38 years now)! It was kinda nice to know that he still looks at me!

5. What playlist/cd is on your ipod/cd player right now?

I don't have a cd player or an ipod. I have very eclectic tastes in music - I love oldies, country, classical, and anything with an upbeat tempo and a catchy tune.

6. Are you a nightowl or a morning person?

I have always been a morning person. I can jump right out of bed (although recently it is sometimes more of a hobble) and be dressed (in my frayed jeans), ready to go, in 5 minutes. I tend to shut down around 9 and begin snoozing unless I push myself to do something active.

7. Do you prefer dogs or cats?

I love all animals. I really can't pick one over the other.
I like cats because they are independent and can be so silly in their play. I like that you can go away for a few days and they will be alright with a self-feeding bowl for water and food and a litter box.

I like that you can train dogs to do wonderful things and they are such wonderful, trusting and forgiving companions.

8. What is the meaning behind your blog name?

I really feel like I am living my dream. Life is good. I am happy.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Trot - Trot Easy - Easy I Say

I have that lovely slightly achy feel that comes from doing a lot of riding. It feels good. But to be honest, I am tired of trotting. Probably as tired of trotting as Pippin is! I've been lunging and round penning Pippin to get him to settle into a nice, steady trot and to work at relaxing and bringing his head down. Once he's settled, I usually get on and we do some more trotting. I never realized until recently just how nervous Pippin is. I think he really is anxious when he has a person on top of him, and that is the root of all of his problems. When I ask for a trot I get a and furious. My intention is to 'ride it out' without meddling with his mouth until he settles. However, I usually give in before he does and ask for some smaller circles and serpentines to settle him. I hope to look back at this post (in the very near future) to see how much Pippin has changed. (Hint, hint, hint!)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

They'll Make a Liar Out of You - Every Time!

Just yesterday I had a conversation with a friend about horses that went something like this:

Friend: We have four strands of wire, except along the back of our property where we only have two. But, the horses respect the fence and I've never had any problem with them going through it.

Me: My guys respect a fence, too. We have one strand of electric along the top of 4 strands, but we have separated our large pasture into 3 smaller pastures using 2 wire braids.

Friend: And they respect that?

Me: You bet! We haven't even had the charger turned on since before May and we've had no problems at all.

So today I look out and what do I see? Doc, happily munching grass in the wrong pasture. When I went to investigate I found that he had walked through the top wire braid, pulling the insulator's nail out of the post and then he stepped nicely over the lower strand to get to grass that he thought was better. You know...the grass is always greener yada, yada, yada. So I shooed him back over the wire. I trotted into the barn to get the screw-in insulators that we had just purchased, not an hour before I discovered my wayward horse! By the time I got back out to the pasture, Doc was once again in the wrong pasture. I shooed him back over and fixed the top wire using the new insulator.

Scene of the Escape
My dear, sweet husband brought down the weed trimmer and cut the grass that would probably have shorted the fence out. While he was working, Doc continued to nibble on the good stuff...on the wrong side of the fence. Oooooh, you wascally wittle horse. Be vewy, vewy careful! 

The power is plugged in and voltage is checked. The fence is HOT!
At least my wascally wittle horse seemed to sense that the fence was on. He stayed clear of the fence for the rest of the afternoon. I hate to see them get zapped.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Pippins POV: I tried to be good...honest

Last week my Mrs. Owner had a friend over. This was the third time she's done this in one week. My Mrs. Owner's friend rode my friend, Doc, and my Mrs. Owner rode me. It was a beautful day. A little on the crisp side with a nice wind bringing all kinds of sounds and smells right over to me.
I was happy when my Mrs. Owner turned me away from the round pen. 
I was happier when my Mrs. Owner turned me away from that other lady's indoor arena. 
I was happiest when my Mrs. Owner turned me toward the wide open hay field. 
(Isn't it fun to use comparatives and superlatives?!) 
We were going to walk around on the nice grass with the birds and the toads and the frogs. What fun! We walked down the hill, up the hill, across the dam and then, damn! What in tarnation is that thing?! Out of the corner of my eye I saw two young human guys gliding down a hill. I couldn't understand what was making them move like they were, but, they were moving, almost soundlessly, faster than they normally can walk. They were almost hidden from my view by the top of the hill, so I could only see a bit of them as they seemed to magically glide along. I thought about what I had seen. I just couldn't make sense of it. I thought about what I had seen some more. I still didn't understand it. I thought about it a bit more and even though it had been several minutes and even though I was several hundred feet away I decided that what I had seen could  be very dangerous, indeed. What I had seen could hurt me or my Mrs. Owner. I thought about what I had seen and decided I better get out of that place....! So, I ran. Oops, I probably should have given my Mrs. Owner some sort of signal that I was going to try to save us. My acceleration was so darn fast that she was just about left in my dust, along with Doc and my Mrs. Owner's friend. So, here I was trying to save my Mrs. Owner and she didn't seem very pleased. She rudely pulled me around in a circle and unkindly yanked on my mouth, telling me to 'whoa'. I tried to tell her about the perceived danger in every way I could. I held my head high. I snorted. I made my eyes open really wide. I pranced. I tried to run .... again. My Mrs. Owner just didn't get it. She made me walk on. She made me walk across the field, across the bridge, down the hill, up the hill and across the damn dam...again. She made me walk past where I had seen the scary thing. She made me walk past where I had tried to save our hides. She made me walk all the way home again. My Mrs. Owner isn't much fun!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

One Potato......

Oh, why don't you eat the first potato we got from the garden?

No, you did most of the work, you eat it.

Hey, why don't we share it?

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Pippin Rap

I have been having great fun with both of my boys. I think sending Pippin off for training was the answer - for him AND for me! While he was gone I had a chance to focus on Doc and on my riding. I have built up both my muscles AND my confidence. Now I can relax and enjoy my ride instead of constantly worrying about the "what if's". Well, to be honest, some of the worries still sneak in, but they aren't as pervasive as they once were.

Thanks to Mr. Country Cowboy trainer (MCC), I have much more trust in both my horses. MCC keeps brainwashing telling me that Pippin is a good horse. Pippin isn't going to hurt me. Pippin is a lot of fun. Yet, we both know that Pippin is still a striking shade of green and needs lots of time and many different experiences. 

Yesterday we had a brisk morning with more than our typical amount of wind. The average was running about 22 mph. Ugh! I had invited another friend out to ride so I worked both boys in the round pen to settle them a bit. Doc (my 'Whoa go-to kinda guy') actually blew up and bucked and kicked out a few times, and exhibited waaayyyy more energy than is his usual.

While Pippin remained remarkably calm. He did put in one boot scootin' boogie and even my friend noticed it. His relapse reminded me of the rap that my dear friend sent me just after I had posted about Pippin's training. What a perfect summary of Pippin's adventures with MCC!

Pippin - 'in-trainin' Pippin - your dippin' and scootin' - ain't her blame.

Pippin - Pop-in (pop-out) Pippin - She twern't overreactin' to your game.

Pippin - back-cinch-buckin' Pippin - MCC's fixin' to tame your mane.

Pippin' - tie-up-hatin'-fender-hoppin'-halter-slidin'-eye-twinklin'-goose-sniffin'-foot-stompin'-puddle-hoppin'-silly boy Pippin - Your mama cain't wait - to have you home again!

She's right. I'm glad to have Pippin back at home, and I would like to add that after our round pen work we had a nice ride. My friend began working with 'Whoa' and then switched to 'Go'. No dippin' and scootin'. Just a pleasant ride on cute horses!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Name That Pony

New names for my guys? 

How 'bout Whoa! and Go!

Go! and Whoa! on a trail ride this morning. They were both perfect, despite the different energy levels they brought to the ride.

Friday, September 3, 2010

An Elevating Experience

Hay is ready for pickup. That's what the email said. Time for work!

We have a wonderful opportunity in our community. We have a fairly large common area of land that can not be developed as it lies in a flood plain. The area is mowed and baled and each horse owner has the opportunity to purchase a certain number of bales per horse at $3.00 per bale. This year we were allocated 50 bales for each horse. We all watch the cutting and baling process, anxiously awaiting the 'go ahead' to collect hay. We all have our own opinions of just where the best hay is located and there is somewhat of a scramble to get to those spots. There are a few folks who are a bit underhanded about the hay pickup, but for the most part we have a good time and neighbors help each other and enjoy the camaraderie of bucking hay - although for some of us the bucking is more like a feeble crow hop!

Close inspection. Was this the area where the thistle was growing, or was that closer to the road?

Hurry up and take the picture. This bale is heavy!

Hay (sic), just toss that bale up here to me.

Doesn't this look like fun? Aren't you just dieing to help us next year?

Even Dad, who happened to be visiting, was pressed into service! He was our designated driver.

We only have room for two more bales on this load. Phewww!

Our truck is full. Now let's help our friends load up.

We get to try out our 'new' hay elevator. This sure beats hauling one bale up at a time with the block and tackle!

Grab it! We'll put it on the third row on my right.

Finished for now! Who needs to pay for a gym membership?!

What is Four?

Have you ever thought of the meaning of "four"?  Four is the number of: seasons in a year. corners and sides to a square. virtues....