Wednesday, September 20, 2017

The Fourth

You may have noticed in my last post I mentioned having four horses. But wait..I thought I only owned three? There is Riesling, Czoltar, and newly acquired green bean Merlot. 

And then there was four. 

I want to say I briefly mentioned unicorn mare a few times in passing on my blog, but I'm also too lazy to go read back my posts. 

Back in early spring, Best Trainer CJ got bombarded with calls from an unknown number for days. Because her phone number is on the internet, she avoids calls from people she doesn't know and lets them leave her a voicemail if they want her to call them back. Normal. One day, CJ just couldn't take it anymore that this unknown person wouldn't stop calling so she answered. And who would it be? This mares old owner. She will be in my life a lot more so I will call her Horse Show Grandma (hey- she told me she wanted to be that to me!).

HSG got CJ's number from a friend and was contacting her to see if she wanted a horse. CJ had a history of getting horses that were injured and needed layup and rehab in the past. Well, HSG had this lovely young mare that had a suspensory injury, and despite having a 99% chance of full recovery and 4 months left of stall rest, decided that she herself was getting older and ultimately it was in the horses best interest to find a new home. 

HSG came to CJ's barn one day to check the facility out (and this is when I met her too!) and see if it would be an optimal home for the mare. You see, HSG had this mare custom made and didn't want money out of her, just really wanted to know she would have an amazing life. After some talk and HSG approving of CJ and her facilities, CJ would be receiving the mare for $1 and provide her a good home and also breed her (HSG didn't want to see her sit and do nothing so they both thought breeding her was a good alternative to her not being a riding horse right now). 

Magical mare came to CJ's  and I was instantly obsessed with her. This lady is drop dead gorgeous! Through CJ and HSG I learned more of her history. Her name is Meghan Leesha Moore. She is a 7 y/o Irish Draught mare that was bred in California for eventing. She did some YEH stuff and competed recognized Intro as well as schooling BN as a young mare. She got hurt while playing in pasture last year and HSG had done stem cell therapy, aqua therapy, and all sorts of other things to make sure she would have a full recovery. 

CJ told me that her plan was to sell her to me as my future forever horse next spring after she had her baby. The plan was perfect because Evita was to be bred at the same time and both of their babies would grow up together! 

But as luck would have it, neither of them took. At this point I was already leasing E so CJ wasn't super bummed that it didn't work out for a baby this year. But it left her with a mare just sitting around her farm and doing nothing. 

She spoke to HSG about her plans, and offered to have me buy Mae for a small price just so CJ would get some of the money back she put into her from shoeing, hay, ect. Of course I couldn't say no. But there was one condition. I wanted Mae to have another ultrasound confirming a full recovery of her suspensory and a vet's clear prognosis with no limitations or future soundness issues. 

Earlier in August I hauled her over to Idaho Equine Hospital where she was foot perfect in her manners from me taking her out of her stall to the ultrasound being performed. The vet I spoke with had studied her previous ultrasounds prior to our appointment and did a lameness evaluation first. 100% sound. Next he ultrasounded (because I don't care how cheap a horse is, I want to be damn sure I'm not getting a money pit) and showed me his findings. While the suspension wasn't "normal" per say, he told me it was 100% healed and having a normal suspensory didn't guarantee perfectly sound. He saw no evidence that there would be any future soundness issues caused by it down the road, and ultimately if she was slowly brought back into fitness, she had no limitations. 

I've paid for her and shes officially mine. Am I a little stupid to buy not only another horse but another horse that already had a major injury? Eh yeah..a little. But professional advice assured me she should be sound. So why not take a little risk? She could be my horse of a lifetime (I mean nothing comes above Riesy) or maybe shes just destined to be a broodmare. But I'd hate myself for not taking the time to find out.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017


Last Monday was my first day back at BSU where I continued to fall into the past habits I always do. I hadn't bought any books, nor a parking pass. I didn't know where my classes were or quite frankly, the names of half of them.

I sat down at my laptop an hour before I had to leave and decided I should probably buy a new parking pass. Much to my dismay, all the passes were sold out. This wasn't common compared to the past few years I have bought one. I called up to ask about the wait list and found out they were 200+ persons long.

Today I added an extra 25 minutes to my commute time and parked off campus. The air inside my building was disgustingly too cold and I wasn't prepared for the feeling of walking in an oven when I finally left my classes for the day. It was a frazzled to start my day, but at 2:45 pm I found myself leisurely strolling back to my car. I had time to think. I thought about where I was and I reminisced about what I would be doing if I was walking back to my old apartment or house instead of walking to my car to take a commute home.

I'd stroll home with an afternoon left to my day with no plans. Maybe I'd float the river. Maybe I'd play beer pong in my backyard with my roommate. Maybe I'd tan. Or maybe I'd decide it was too hot outside and I'd lay in bed and watch Netflix.

Life with less responsibilities. Life with seemingly more fun and more time to do what I want. Why did I give that all up to have so much on my plate and so much more stress?

But I thought long and hard and really remembered how I felt. Even though I look back now and think about how "easy" life was without everything going on that I do now, I still was stressed. I still was worried about money, worried about time, worried about my weight. I worried about saving up for the next show and about school and getting along with my roommates. I worried about boys and family and friends.

I decided stress is a state of mind. Even though I technically have more things in my life to be stressed about now than I did back then, I also have so much more positive and joyous things in them as well. While four horses is a lot to take care of and definitely more expensive, I have four horses! I mean, how kickass is that? Sure farm life and living in my own space has a lot more responsibility, but I'm living with the person I love and get to live the life I always dreamed of! I most certainly cannot say that my living arrangement was dream worthy when I lived with any of my roommates.

Maybe adulthood isn't all that its cracked up to be yet. I'm only transitioning. But I have no reason to keep holding on to the stresses that will always be. Live and let live.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

2 for 3

Well. Ive had 3 jump lessons. And guess what I managed to do in this last one? Fall off. Again. 

I'll start from the beginning. I was finally early for once for my lesson and was set to ride a new horse, Bing. He was a previous eventer. Getting ready I managed to yank my boot zippers too hard and busted them. Whoops. Black vet wrap to the rescue.

I got on and was told he had been hacked that morning so he was already pretty warmed up so I only spent a few minutes getting to know his gaits. We were going to work on a grid to a roll back that day. Mind you, I've never done a roll back and man they are hard!

The grid started with poles to cross rails and ended on 2'3 verticals with 2'6 oxers. Going through the grid set up at full height I felt Bing start to lose energy. He kind of gave me the middle finger to my leg encoragement and balked at the last oxer, from a bounce. I prompty flipped over (thankfully not hitting any poles.)

This sucked. I bounced up but mentally was pretty shaken. This is where my fear of jumping lies. The hard part is I was truely beaming with joy sailing over fences when I had a horse beneath me. 

I was a little shakey but got back on and tried to hold back the tears. I took a few laps of transitions and started crying. My trainer asked if I would be more comfortable just jumping a single vertical to get back in the groove. 

I took a deep breath, legged him up and got him very infront of my leg and kept my chest up and headed back to the grid. I had a small vendetta with this horse now. And by forcing myself to rise like I knew how, we completed the grid beautifully and I continued on the mini course and jumped a roll back to another figure 8 roll back. We ended going through the grid one final time. 

That fall really did some mental damage. Here's hoping the next ride goes smoother. 

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Getting my sea legs

My final for my last summer class is tomorrow! Wohoo! Anywho, something neat I've been up to is taking jumping lessons again!

Back in May I won a three lesson package as part of a silent auction. Finally this month I was able to put them to use! Because I haven't jumped in so long I wanted to ride some lesson ponies to get started. 

I fail at media but I've had two lessons thus far and have ridden a super kick-ride appy lesson pony. The first lesson was with a rider and her 9 month of the track, 4 year old tb. 

Now I'm obviously a rising olympic show jumping star and jumping a whopping 2' in these lessons. But I seriously have no lady balls and as I need more confidence this is the height that works for me. 

First lesson went really well and the thing I need to work on most is keeping a flat back and engaging my core. 

The second lesson I had just a few days ago and I was in a group lesson with some kids. The flatting was rough as we were trotting at the two-point. My thighs were burning so quick. We worked on jumping S curves and I was doing mostly ok at this. 

However, in the 100+ degree heat and some mild humidity; I was so tired toward the end of the lesson I was getting sloppy. My last course I couldn't stay straight and keep my lesson pony forward enough. We were getting burried to the fence and throwing in some super ugly chips. 

I was pushing myself super hard trying to keep going. After the last fence my trainer told me to keep going and do it again. Now I should have asked for a quick walk break to catch my breath, but bucked up instead. We made it over the first crossrail fine (because crossrail) but were so underpowered. At the next 18" cavaletti poor pony had to deerhop over the fence because I sucked at riding and I totally leaned. I was popped out of the tack and because I was leaning managed to fall off on the landing side of the fence.

Ouch, bruised ego. I got back on and saintly lesson pony managed to carry me over the line and it was called a day. I have a lot more stamina to improve upon but it was overall a good learning experience. 

One more lesson left, then I have to figure out how to scrape together my pennies so I can stay in the program! 

Monday, July 24, 2017

Baby's First Vet Bill

Now upon first glance the picture looks like baby Z is just resting his hind fetlock. But as soon as he started walking he dragged it behind him rather alarmingly. 

I had never seen or heard of it, and neither had CJ. She was afraid he broke his pelvis. Luckily this was not the case. While waiting for the vet I posted on one of my fb groups and quite a few people said it was locked stifle. I spent a few monutes googling and it seemed like that to me too.

The vet confirmed the diagnosis and told
Me its common in young horses. The medial tendon that supports the patella was loose and slipping. The vet gave him some IV bute and told me to bute him over the next few days then start exercising him to build up muscle and tighten the tendon. 

He immediately went back to normal! So I guess baby horse has to start "working" a little earlier than I wanted. We will just be handwalking hills, he has a lot more growing up to do before I get too crazy with his work.