Sunday, March 29, 2009

Wyoming Robbins is my name......

.....and becoming a wonderful reliable trail horse for MY NEW ADOPTER is my game! :-)

YES! Wyoming has a new adopter. And YES! We were boneheads and forgot our own camera so no pictures of the adoption itself. Chris J. who came out to help me with Wyoming the weekend before took a couple of pictures and will e-mail them to me, then I will post a picture of all of us! Carol Robbins and her family were at the adoption looking around and she said she kept coming back and she liked how I was handling Wy, and she thought he was very well mannered. Whew! Several times thru the day he was snorting, squealing, and pawing the air at the geldings in the pen next to him. Even tho he is going to be gelded, I was worried the idea of a stallion would concern people. Carol saw something in Wy, and she chose him. I brought him home and will put some riding time on him. I am so excited! Not only for Wy getting a new home, but for the chance to be able to work with him. He is a really neat horse, so smart and inquisitive, and I just know he is going to be fun to work with.

The other good news is Carol's daughter found a horse to adopt, and he will be heading home with Chad Kelly to work.

Here is the story of how we finally made it there:

The adoption was Friday and Saturday, and Brian and I took off work planning on being there with Wy on Friday. We got so much rain, and again, the barn lot and yard were saturated. Thursday night we even got the trailer parked at the pen just in case - that way 1/2 the battle was done.
Friday morning we waited around and finally decided it was not worth the chance so we headed to the adoption ourselves. There were a lot of very nice horses there, and some of the tallest 2 yr olds I had ever seen! One big sorrel horse that they had labeled as a 2 yr old was 16 hands plus! No joke! He was a good looking horse. A young man not much taller than myself adopted him.

I was originally going to stay with Angela and her family about 40 minutes away and Brian was going to come home, but we both decided to come home and assess the situation. The wind had been blowing like a big dog all day long, and it quit raining so the top layer in the yard firmed up a bit. I was still scared we would get stuck on the hill but Brian pushed me (sometimes I need that) and we decided to try and get Wy loaded, get pulled out in the yard and he can stay in the trailer over night. I was also scared that Wy would hurt himself because it was very dark out. He had never been ASKED to load before, so after me not thinking and just trying to get him to go in thru the little chute we rigged up, I finally decided to coax him with food. :-) Yep, it worked! So we had a very unhappy little mustang spending the night in a trailer away from his friends. Made me sad...but it had to be done.

Saturday we got up at 3:45 am (adoption was 3 hrs away from us and it started at 8:00), got everyone fed and then headed out.
He was very ancey when we got there and I knew I would have to get in the pen and show him off. Not something I am comfortable with...I like doing good things, and blend in while doing it. Yup, I have to get over it! :-D Anyways, I finally got the lead rope on him and we worked and worked. When people would walk by I would smack the whip and string around him, I would touch him all over, I would take the short whip and bag and flap it all over his head and body, we would change directions, he would face up with me (most of the time) and Carol is right, he really was well mannered. Just think...the weekend before was the first time anybody touched him, and then we had ugly weather right after that so he was not 100% halter broke yet. He did start acting like a stallion and as pretty as that arched neck and head were, I was worried about people being concerned over a stallion who acts like that.

Here is the funny thing - I had never heard him whinny until we put him in the trailer and parked him in the front yard. And I have never seen him act like a stallion, even sniffing the mares on the other side of the fence here at home. I was very surprised. I think he was just showing his 'stuff' and letting them know that HE was in town.

Several people asked about him and some people really really liked him a lot. There was a young cowboy kid who was there with someone who looked like his brother. He loved Wy! But his Dad moved him on to something else. I think they ended up with something a little stockier - but the kid kept looking over at Wy.
It all worked out because Carol came back and she wanted him. Carol has plans to trail ride with her daughter...which I think is great!
There were several inquiries as to whether he was still available or not after Carol adopted him. Chad Kelly's wife, Sherry, was also very helpful and was pointing people our direction thru the day. Sherry even asked if Vegas was still available because people were interested in gentled mustangs, but he has an adopter who is filling out their paperwork and will send it my direction soon. They also want him saddle trained, so I will be a busy girl.

The weather down there on Saturday was crazy! Lots and lots of rain, hail, snow coming is Spring! In spite of the weather, a lot of people came out, and I think they had a successful adoption.

It was a tiring day for me and Wy both. He was getting bored and had enough of showing off for the public, and I was just tired from being up so early. Brian was there by my side the whole time. Having his support, encouragement, and sometimes kick in the pants, is what makes this even more great than what it would be if I was by myself. I love you baby! ;-)
The whole experience itself was wonderful. I was in a position I had never been in before, I got to meet more people than I usually do as a spectator, and Wy got the experience of coming and going and having kids run past his pen (scary at first) and all the hoop-la going on around him.

And guess what I got to do? This is the one picture that Brian got from his cell phone....I got to be on live radio! Woo hoo! Okay, it was not so Woo Hoo at first. I was a chicken but said I would do it. I really love these mustangs and I need to get out of my comfort zone to do what I can to help them. They interviewed several people and it was FUN! I wish I had more time...I had more to say! :-)

Then we headed was ugly but not as ugly as it was in other areas. We got home and got the truck stuck on the hill and it started sliding. I was sick to my stomach and started shaking! Brian finally stopped trying to move it, the truck stopped, I put cinder blocks on the other side tires to make me feel better...I don't think it really needed it, I just needed to do something. All I knew was we had a horse in the trailer and I was scared like you would not believe!

We unloaded Wy in the yard (remember, his leading skills are still very very rusty) with a bucket of feed as encouragement and he was curious about the stuff we had to walk by, but not scared of it. Of course he paused, looked, sniffed, paused again, but it was okay. We made it out to the barn lot and he had to walk thru a small gate, and sure enough, he did it! Then the llama and minis came running over to us! Oh geez! That was when he got ancey. Brian stopped to shut the small gate, so the shaking of the bucket did not distract him, then he pulled away from me. He was talking to my Arab mare (who I locked up before there was an accident)and the mini's, then we got a hold of the rope. He did not even fight us - he just wanted to visit.

Here is the cool part...he got his front foot over the rope and he did not freak out at all. Ropes do not seem to be an issue for him at all. The only time he kicked out was when the rope got wrapped around his back ankle and he could not get it off. He did not panic, he was just annoyed because as his front foot came down it tightened the back loop. We finally worked it off him, and got his attention focused on the grain bucket again. He followed us around the pen to the gate - BACK IN! Whew! By then it was dark and I was worried about him not knowing where the fence lines are.

I was out playing with the boys today in their mud pit, and Wy came right up to me. He is so tired! Kinda made me laugh. On our way home we stopped a couple of times and he was so curious and watched everything with wonder....he was not nervous or concerned, just wanting to know what everything was.

Yep, he is a neat guy and he and Carol are lucky to have each other. I am excited for the weather to clear up so I can start working with them.

I have decided I need a covered area to work. I would love an indoor area, but I would be happy just to have something that has a roof over it, and good drainage around it. Goals are good, right? :-)

Until later...Karen and Tripp

The power of lightning!

There are no pictures to go with this...

A couple of days after Chris came out to help me with Wyoming, we got HUGE storms! I came home Tuesday from work to pick up Bob for his trip to the vet, and the power was out. Our power company is usually right on it, so I did not call them. I hung out with Bob for a while to say good-bye, then left for town.

Brian met me in town and when we got home about 7:00 pm, the power was still out. We called and they did not know anything about it. Come to find out they really did know, but they didn't know they knew. Yep, follow that one! Ha ha! Earlier in the day someone heard a loud bang and some sizzling....that can't be good! So the power company came out and fixed that issue. They did not know anybody else had problems until we called, so they showed up that evening and replaced the transformer at the edge of the yard.

The next morning we realized that the well was not working (no shower), the furnace was not working (due for some cooler weather), and the underground dog fence power box in the house was not working (dogs have to be penned up until we get another box).

Water was the first priority - have you all ever had a pump pulled from a well? ACK! It was not cheap, but it had been in since 1991 so it outlived its average life expectancy. We decided to wait on the furnace after the big expense of the well. We were only due for a couple cooler days, then it would warm up again. We will just snuggle! :-) As far as we were concerned, it was not an emergency to have it looked at just yet.
We got a new and improved dog fence kit ordered (should be here tomorrow).

Oh yeah, the fuse box for the well pump had both fuses blown and the door to the box was blown off of the box itself! As in it was across the yard, and the little bright orange tops to the fuses were also across the yard! Dang!

So, yes, it was inconvenient, but even a bigger YES that it could have been a whole lot worse, and thankfully it wasn't! Whew!

Good news was Brian talked to the husband of a friend (thanks Angela and Mike!) and Mike gave Brian some ideas in case the furnace was having big time issues. While they were talking they mentioned the thermostat and I got to thinking that we put a digital on it last year - why not try putting the old one back on?
Brian popped the old one back in and sure enough, the blower came on. We got the house warmed up and we thought all was well. A while ago I realized I never heard the blower shut off, and it was blowing cool air. I am not going to stress about least the blower came on. Will figure it out later.

Lightning is a pretty powerful and amazing thing! Wouldn't it be fantastic if we could find a way to channel that energy and save it?

This weekend was our Mustang Adoption - Missouri only has one again this a lot more rain and the mud was out of control...

More on that in the next post.....

Until later, Karen and Tripp

Sometimes the right thing hurts...

When I adopted my cat, Bob, he was listed as a 4 or 5 yr old. When we crossed over to 2009, that put him at age 19 or 20. Bob has been showing his age the past couple of years, and the weekend before last he quit eating. I had to make that horrible decision to do what was right. If he continued to eat, I would have let nature take it's course because other than that, he was fine. So I made a trip to the vet....Bob will be missed.

Bob was also a victim of my "Self Portrait-itis" - ha ha!

Bob loved dogs! He made it very clear several years ago that no other cats were allowed in this house, but I could have dogs. I babysat a cat for a friend of mine, and Oreo was here for 3 months. Oh my gosh...Bob let me know that this was not acceptable! For a solid 3 weeks after Oreo finally went home, Bob gave me the cold shoulder. October 2008 we adopted two cats because Bob lost his luster as a mouser. Bob seemed to perk up a bit watching the other cats run and play. Reminded me of visits to the nursing home when elderly people seem to brighten when younger visitors show up.

Here is Bob and Brado. Brado was adopted at age 13 and passed on at age 15.

I miss Bob, but it was time...he let me know.

Until later...Karen and Tripp

Monday, March 23, 2009

Wyoming and Me...

What better way to start the evening than with a self portrait? :-)

Tonite was a great night with him! It is very windy so I was not sure how everyone was going to act. I got the other two boys in the small pen and Wy and I were in the round pen. It only took a few seconds for me to grab the lead rope and start walking him around. He still gets sticky feet, but I am still pleased with where he is right now.

After walking and petting a bit, I grabbed my short whip with what is left of a plastic bag. I expected a pretty big reaction but it was quite uneventful. I walked away from him first flapping it around in front of me and beside me, and he followed. When I stopped he just had to know what I had, and he thought he needed some too! The next thing I know I was rubbing his face and ears with it. It was hard to get a picture while doing this...but I managed.

It was getting dark quick, and my photographer showed up! Whew! Pictures are blurry because of the time of night, and we have not figured out a good night time setting on the thing. My camera is not reliable. Pictures I took this weekend made us all look like we had been slimed. Not good!

Wy getting flagged around his head and not seeming too concerned about it.

........and getting flagged on the legs...........(and on his belly, but pictures did not turn out)

..........and getting an ear rub.............

.........and getting rubbed on his back...........

.........then of course we had a little bit of nose blowing.........

I gave him a treat after we were done. Then I let the other two boys back in the pen. The other two could smell the treat on my hands, so they were crowding me, then Wy thought I had another one for him so he was all over me too! The boy who was scared two days ago, is now a treat hog! So sorry...a treat is only given when we are completely done, and when it was earned. No bribery here! Well, until trailer loading...ha ha! Just kidding!
It was a very good night and I feel good about it.

I have to go to bed now...have been sick and not sleeping - I am running out of steam. I just took something to help with that and to help the cough, so hopefully I will get a good night sleep and I will start to heal.

Until later...Karen and Tripp

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Wyoming gets a visitor.....from Aunty Chris!!!!



One of the first people we met at a mustang adoption a few years ago was Chris, and her husband Phil. Anybody who knows them knows that they LOVE the mustangs! They have been working with mustangs for several years and work closely with the BLM. They are also mentors if anybody should need help.

Chris is the one who worked with Judy and her mustang Bob for the 2008 Mustang Makeover, that they unfortunately did not get to attend. ( - July, August and Sept archives) Chris offered to come out and help me work on touching Wyoming so HOPEFULLY we can get him to the only adoption we are having in our State this year. She knew I had been out of town a while, so was behind on gentling. I did not think of getting pictures early on....darn it!

When she showed up, she just watched me a while to see what I was doing with him. I had a lariat rope around his neck, and he was doing very well at facing up to me, etc., but I could not get any further than his nose as far as touching.
Before Friday evening, I could walk by him and touch him all over with the lunge whip, but he has a lot of energy and would go and go. I finally got him to stop and look at me when I asked, but it did not last long. He would get distracted and move on.
Friday evening I looped a rope around his neck and worked on him facing up with me, etc. Angela said something one day that is right on the money - they become experts at avoidance. And even tho Wyoming is afraid to be touched, he is not afraid of any of us, if that makes sense. Just look the other direction, sniff the mystery manure and make like he doesn't know it is his, and make like he doesn't see the two-legged's.

Chris came in and started working him - I mean REALLY working him! Wyoming is easily distracted, so he soon realized that the more distracted he was in between working, the more he had to work! After a little bit of that he finally stopped and looked at her with a look of "WHO IS THIS MASKED WOMAN?" After 2 1/2 hrs, which 1/2 was of visiting and me messing with him, and the other 2 hrs was of her messing with him and petting on him, he was doing very good!

Nothing like a good old fashioned forehead rub.

Hmmmm, maybe she isn't that bad after all.

Just a really neat shot...

Chris resting her cheek on Wyoming's was awesome.


After a good sweaty work out, a nice chest scratching is in order.



Vegas....he thought he was in the clear, but nope, he wasn't. Okay, I messed up and tried putting my big heavy saddle on him because that little one I had on him a couple of days ago did not fit. I wanted to see how mine fit. Well, he was not ready, so when it hit the ground with a big THUD! and the pad went with it, he was a little on the nervous side. I will say this. This guy tried real hard not to run me over when the saddle fell off. He tries so hard to please, and he does listen to me. He is just afraid and unsure of himself. I finally had to quit the big saddle because it is hard work, so we brought the lighter saddle back out. This was his first time with this pad too. Not that it mattered...he is still reactive to everything.

Chris worked with him a while, and suggested throwing anything at him that I can think of, every single day until he gets bored with it. And not to even THINK about getting on him until he gets to that point. Oh is hard not to THINK about it! Ha ha!

This is the first time Vegas has had two of us in the pen before. So much to think about! The horse eating pad, the new lady that chased Wyoming, and the person I can usually count on...why is she doing this to me? Oh, she is doing this so I can become a confident riding horse and best friend - FOR MY NEW ADOPTER! YES! Vegas has someone who wants to adopt him. We just need to do the paperwork and get approved first, then I will tell more! :-)

This saddle is not as scary as that other one that kept jumping off my back! Whew!

We had a lot of fun, and I am so glad that Chris came out. You know how we learn things, but forget them? I did that...when I first brought Tripp home, I found myself wanting to baby him, and the thought of working him to the point of sweating was not a thought in my head. Not because I am afraid of hard work, just because I didn't want him to be afraid of anything so I did everything slow and soft.
Well, they are going to be afraid, and I realized that I fell back into being too soft. I can still work slow, which is a better pace for me, and I can still be soft, but I need to be more assertive. I have certain expectations for people - I also need to have expectations for my horses.

I got sick the end of last week, and I over did it a bit yesterday, but had so much fun! Today I did not get out there as much as I wanted. I still don't feel good, and I need to rest. Oh gosh, that brings me to another topic! I can't sleep. Then today when I should have been napping, I could not shut my brain off...had to go out and play with the horses. So I did. Then I came back in. Brian headed out and I stayed inside...for a while. I just could not handle it! I had to go out and find out what was going on...I didn't want to miss anything! So that is why I can't rest! I am nosey and want to know what is happening everywhere else.

That is it for now.
Until later....Karen and Tripp

Bruce the Llama is now called....Chase!

The llama, who I called Bruce, now has a new name. He is called Chase. Why? Because he has fun chasing the other critters! He still chases Jester, the donk, when it suits him, but he also chases the fowl. The neighbors muscovy ducks were in our field yesterday and Chase took off after them, but when he got close, he ran slower - almost as if to be sure not to hurt them. I came home from work early because I was sick, and I went out to check on him, and he came trotting up to me. He is a cute dude!

There is some netting in this dirt pile, so I was pulling it out. Chase wanted to know what was up....

Chase dusts himself just like the others! Pretty good view of his feet - sure don't want to get kicked or struck by him!

One big dust ball!

Until later...Karen and Tripp

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Got Milk???

He should be in commercials! GOT MILK?

Meet Brian's new pet. He is a 2 yr old male llama. He is black, except for the milk lips. :-) He does not have a name yet...we will see what comes to us as we get to know him. I am secretly calling him just came to me. Hee hee!

When we got him home, Tandee, my older Arab mare was all excited! She chased him around, then after a couple of minutes, lost interest. I did not get still shots of that - just video. Will have to make time to play with it to post. I was home sick today and am doing good to get this done.

The llama, aka Bruce, LOVES to chase the donks! He seems to get the most joy out of chasing Jester.

Here is a full body shot.

Brian hand feeding Bruce. He is sort of tame...but we need to halter train him. He will be great for the horses too!

Speaking of the horses....they are very curious about him. His attention was short lived. He has lived with horses and cattle so they are nothing special to him.

That is it tonite....hope everyone is doing well!

Until later...Karen and Tripp, who has his own llama...I mean Brian has his own llama! ;-)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Vegas wears a saddle! Woo hoo!

I LOVE DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME!!! I got to work with Vegas last night and again tonite. In a t-shirt! Woo hoo!

I had not worked with Vegas for 3 1/2 weeks, and I really was not too happy about that, but sometimes that is just the way it is. I will just try to do the best I can with the amount of time I have. My goal was to have both of them ready for the only adoption that is going to be in our State. Goals are good...the adoption is the end of next week and I am not giving up yet! :-)

When I took the saddle in the pen tonite, Vegas freaked! He squatted down low and started shaking. I threw the thing on the ground and started walking around the pen to try to distract him. I felt horrible that he was so afraid of it! I put the halter on him and we walked around the pen back and forth, and worked our way closer to it. Finally I could pick it up without him getting so scared, and he followed me around while I carried it. That is my trainer tip for the day - don't chase them with scary things...let them think they are the ones doing the chasing! ;-)

I got it up on him, and after a little bit of "I don't know about this" I took it off. We did that several times, then walked some more. I also put my bitless bridle on him to get him used to the feel of that.

Isn't he cute?

I took him for a walk outside of the round pen, and we walked thru the wooden box and over the big dirt pile.

Karen: See? The box is not so scary...

Vegas: AH HA! I can do this!

Vegas: Look at me flex!

Vegas: I don't like lifting my foot, but I guess I will...this time. And maybe next time too. (The backs are still a no-no)

After a nice work out, it is time to head back to the other pen.

Wyoming: I will sniff you over this dude's back...but that is all...for now.

Vegas is still very reactive, but I can see a big difference in him. Last night I had the bareback pad fastened to him, and I was jumping up and down beside him. He was not too keen on it at first, then it was not a big deal. He is really coming around...I am proud of him for being so brave.

Off to bed....Karen and Tripp (who is probably snoozing already)

Ace has a Full House....

While I was gone Brian tells me that Ace was trying to be romantic with one of the girls. ACK! WHAT????? I sure did not find anything when I looked right after we got him. Apparently I missed them....

So, as Brian put it - Ace has a Full House! So now he is living with the TIP horses until I can get the vet out here.

Until later....Karen and Tripp who does NOT have a Full House! Whew!

Road to the Horse 2009 Weekend

Brian and I had a fantastic weekend! I got home Wednesday evening, went to work on Thursday, then we left Friday morning for Franklin, TN for Road to the Horse.

Our journey on the way there was fun. We stopped in Metropolis, IL to visit superman. Actually we were going to hunt for a letterbox, but the park that we think it was hidden in was closed due to downed trees and big branches. There were crews out there working.

So we headed into town:


This is a neat town!

Okay, the sign made us laugh!

I did not get any pictures of the actual competition - my little camera just could not work from that distance. We pick our seats at the top of the row in the center so we can see everything.

This year was great! Richard Winters won, and honestly, I would have been
happy with any of them winning. I think Richard was more consistent with his little horse, and he was the first one to ride his horse thru the obstacle course wearing the halter and lead. He said if he was at home he would ride the first few times with the halter, and he was doing it the same here. I did not realize he was the first one to ride the course bitless - I read it today. :-)

Tommy Garland picked a tough horse! That horse had a lot more 'go' than Tommy had time, but let me tell ya, he still rode that horse, and the horse did great for him! Tommy ended up buying him and said he is going to keep his web site updated on the training progress. He is also going to let the people suggest names, then they will pick one. He bought his horse last year too, and his little boy told him that the horse looked like Spirit (that is his name now). Tommy says that is one
horse that will grow old on his place...a forever home!

John Lyons picked a horse that I thought was very bold. John touched him real quick, but the horse was in John's space, but John went with the flow. On day two the horse got sticky feet and just did not want to move. But in the end, they did very well! John talks a lot - he explains everything he is doing and things he thinks the horse is responding to, etc (which is fine for me).....they had 35 minutes to get their horse saddled, get their requirements done, do the obstacle course, then a free style. He was jabbering away, and Rick Lamb was reminding him that he only had 11 minutes left and still needed to do the obstacle course. John was very calm and let us all know that he had plenty of time. He was not too excited about it. At about the 8 minute mark, John decided to
do the obstacle course, and by golly, he just zipped right thru it! He really did pleasantly surprise me!

I enjoyed all three trainers, and even tho they did some things I was not sure about, they were all great and very entertaining. I think this year was better than last year - don't know why, it just was.

Before the competition each trainer comes out and rides their horse for a few minutes. Tommy came out on Spirit and he had ape hanger handlebars (the tall kind) on his saddle with the reins wrapped up on the handles. He was dressed like a biker, and he gave a great performance! Then he announced that he had not practiced that - that this was the first time they did that routine. Wow! Can't wait for the DVD to come out!
Richard rode some reining moves, and John had fun with his horse Preacher, and he rode and drove him. He also took his wife Jodi on a date in front of 6000 people! It was a real neat performance...very romantic!

The Battle of the Bling was alright. Not as big a deal as I was hoping. Mark and his mustang went up against a QH - they did a reining pattern.
Then another QH and Wylie with her mustang did a short obstacle course. She rode
bareback - that girl can ride! She started out way ahead, then got
behind on the figure 8 around some poles. They had a surprise under some bales of shavings - it was a live chicken! She had to dismount, then get back on again (Mark helped her back on) and carry the live chicken to the finish line! It was so darn funny! All I could think about was how great her horse handled it! Tripp would have had a coronary if I was carrying a chicken....they did give me an idea for another thing to get him used to! I have plenty of chickens to practice with. Hee hee!
The best part is the mustangs still won! Everyone had to text their votes in, and I think the mustang people did not give up and they were voting just like it was American Idol! They voted A LOT! Ha ha!
A lady beside me voted for RTTH and she just voted once! I kept my mouth shut and kept on a dialing!

There were a lot of vendors, and a lady who builds driftwood horses had a horse there. There were supposed to be two of them, but we never saw the other one. In fact, I didn't think this was the one that was supposed to be here.... doesn't matter tho, it was beautiful! Inside the horse, around it's withers, you could see a real fiddle inside! I missed it the first time, and the security guy told us about it. Sure was there!

Full body shot.

Brian and I had no idea that we would meet up with our EMM stall neighbors! Stephanie (not in the picture) and her two sons who are trainers were there. Kris (not the tall one...ha ha) and Nik Kokal(the tall one) and I getting our picture taken. It was great to see them!
Here is a neat of the top 10 horses in the Idols division was adopted by someone close to the place that adopted one of their EMM horses. Nik had been hired to work with this horse! Nik said the horse was great for arena work, but the people wanted to trail ride, etc., and the horse would have none of it! So the adopters have been flying the Kokal's to Texas once a month to work with the horse! How cool is that?!

There were several EMM trainers at RTTH - and several of us joined in for a photo op. Brian was the photographer for this picture - Patti Colbert had her own photographer who had stood up on a chair and got a few shots angled down. I can't wait to see them. It was fun to see some of the trainers again and catch up with what everyone is doing.

It was a great weekend! They did not announce trainers for next years event...wonder what is going on with that. Maybe a new format? I will have to be patient....

Until later...Karen and Tripp who missed me while I was gone! :-D

I got to meet up with one of my 2008 EMM friends!

Originally I would have headed home by way of Louisville, but one of our adjusters hit a deer, and I needed to detour the other direction and drop one of my supervisors off in Madisonville to get the new vehicle. In the meantime, I had contacted someone I met at the 2008 EMM - Greg Reynolds. He competed in 2007 and 2008 EMM. I found out he has two mares he is training for the Gatorland Makeover, and I wanted to pay him a visit. We did better than that - he and his wife invited me to stay the night at their house, so after dropping off the supervisor (and catching my 2nd wind the minute we passed into the Central time zone) I spoke to Greg and confirmed I would be there.

Greg is one of those people who really left a great impression with Brian and I both. Brian was excited I was going to get to visit!

Here is the bonus - that morning Greg asked if I needed to head home right away, or did I want to go ride? I will admit I was quite ancey to get home - but I wanted to ride! I had not smelled a horse in 3 weeks! :-)

It had rained hard that night, but I did not know it. I slept sooooo good! I did not know about riding in the mud, but Greg said "It is just mud." So away we went. The other horses were running around us having a grand time, and Dixie, my girl, wanted to play too. It was at this moment I realized that I was not very brave! After my face plant off Tripp, I thought I was fine, but with the other horses running around, and that is what got Tripp started along with the strong winds, I realized how nervous I was. We still rode, and I just moved Dixie around one direction and the next. I was also worried about ruining her training....isn't that crazy to worry about that? Greg reminded me that it is good for her to have other people ride her.
We ended up in another field while the other horses stayed in the front field. That helped, but I still realized that I am a big chicken, and I don't take risks. Part of it might be because I was worried about messing up Dixie, part of it was I did not want to fall off! Ha ha! There were lots of limbs down, and Greg and Mustang Sally would go crashing thru them while I would take the easy way around. I eventually started going thru some of the fallen branches, but not as good as Greg was! Greg is an excellent rider and gave me several tips on little things I was doing and not doing, along with compliments about my riding, which made me feel good. I really wish I could have hung around there all day to have a horse play day! It was fun, the company was great, and I learned new things!

Dixie has quite a story: Greg and a friend went to Land Between the Lakes to ride. The saddle slid sideways and the other person slipped off, Dixie got scared and took off. Poor Dixie was gone for several days with the saddle hanging off her side. After several trips out there riding to try and find her, Greg found out that someone had finally found her and took her to his place. That is a story itself - but the good part is Greg got her back, and she is fine. Greg was just sick that she was gone out there - plus the saddle being on her like that. I was the first person who rode her since that ordeal, and she did GREAT! Personally, I think she did so good because Greg had done such a good job with her training and she trusts him.

Here is Greg with Dixie (I rode her) and Mustang Sally.

After our ride, we played around and I was sliding off Dixie's butt while holding on to the gate rail - and hoping I would not slip off! Ha ha! We laughed so hard - and I had to do this several times before Greg got the picture.

Here are Greg's Gatorland mares. They had horrible ice storms in Kentucky (which is why I was there working) so he and his wife thought it appropriate to name them Ice and Storm. Both are very pretty mares. Storm, the bigger of the two, really reminds me of one of my TIP horses, Vegas. They are built a lot a like.

Here are his other horses, along with Ice and Storm running around having fun with them. Dusty is the light one, and the sorrel is Charlie Horse.

Thanks Greg and Stephanie for your hospitality!
Until we meet again....

Karen, and hopefully Brian next time!

Back home from Lexington, KY!

Okay, can someone let me know if the pictures I am posting look like they have lost their dimension? As in...they look very flat to me. Now I am wondering if it is my monitor because pictures that Brian took this evening (which will be posted later) look flat to me too. (I think I just fixed it...let me know)

Now, I am back home and am soooo glad! Three weeks is a long time to be away from home, especially when the weather isn't so great plus it is dark when I got off work, so I could not go walking in a park.

This was the view out my window. The hotel was located behind The Red Mile harness racing track. I did not get to see any horse activity, but the view was pretty neat! The first several days I was there, we had snow.

My first Sunday there I got up early that morning and went driving around. This was the neatest road! I sure do like those rock fences.

Keeneland had a big sale that included their gift shop stuff (great prices on shirts!) and other people brought things in. It was fun. The last two Sundays, before and after work, I went letterboxing ( or and I found several boxes. One of the places that had a box hidden was out at Keeneland. This bird bath was one of my markers to find a box - this thing was huge!

My last weekend there we had a couple of nice weather days, and Daylight Savings time kicked into gear. Woo hoo! I did not care that I was now two hours off from when I left home....I was just so happy that it would be lighter later.

Lexington is a pretty place and the grass was already starting to green up, and trees were blossoming. It won't be long and things will follow suit here at home.

On my way home I got to meet up with a friend......see next entry for that story.

Until later....Karen and Tripp