Showing posts with label Love. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Love. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Pushing through

I want to say thank you to everyone for your condolences, thoughts, and prayers. It's been a rough few days and my heart is broken, but I'm surviving. Again, thank you for your support.

It's too difficult to go into too much detail, but Beefs coliced. The fiancé said it was okay to go ahead with the surgery as long as the vet was optimistic of his chances of survival. She wasn't. She wasn't even sure they could get him into the surgery room as soon as he would need to go. I would have paid any amount of money to save him, but I wasn't going to pay in excess of $10,000 to have him go through surgery, suffer a few days, and then have to be put down anyway. I've never seen a horse in so much pain, none of the medication had helped Beefheart at all. He kept falling down and whinnying. I couldn't take seeing him like that any longer and made the decision to put him down.

The fiancé has been in Hobbs for the last week, but JL and MB were there with Beefheart and I.  I'm extremely grateful that they were because I'm not sure I could have handled making the decision I did without their support.

I miss Beefs so much. I always will. He was the horse that gave me back my confidence and taught me to enjoy riding again. Beefheart gave me so much happiness in general. Right now, I am just trying to focus on how lucky I was to have the time that I did with him.

So, I'll be okay. It's going to hurt like hell for a really long time, no doubt about that. I have had and probably will have mor breakdowns over losing him. The last few days have been filled with guilt, denial, hopelessness, anger, and about every other negative feeling in between. The worst is when I just become numb. I've had a lot of wonderful horses in my life over the years, but I have never gotten as attached to one as I did Beefheart. Through him, I was finally getting the dedication and love of riding that I used to have back. He helped me put my heart back into it and I will always be thankful for that.

A company has generously donated product for me to do a giveaway. I owe it to them to get this contest going and I need to do something fun and distracting, this will be good for me. Contest details coming soon.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

VCMBH: Interested Parties

I'm seriously thankful to Viva Carlos for doing these awesome blog hops! They're always interesting and fun. I love reading the different answers/stories to her questions from other bloggers.

So L asks what it was that made us interested in buying our horse in the first place. I figured Beefs would be the best one to write about since I had trained Winn before I got him and bred Indy.

Because he makes me smile :)

Sometime in the summer of 2008, my fiancé (then boyfriend), had gotten a call from owners saying they were sending him a horse. We went fishing with some friends that day and when we arrived back at the barn, one of the cutest little horses I had seen was waiting in a stall. I asked Ty what his name was. Beefheart. Say what?!!! What an awful name for such a cute horse!

A few days later, I was watching Beefs on the track. He was a nice (not extraordinary) mover, uphill and balanced. Too bad he wasn't taller. I figured he could make a really nice youth/smaller adult horse one day.

Fast forward to 2009. Long story short, Beefs had two horrible races, a win, and then another horrible race. As a racehorse he was one dimensional, meaning that if he didn't get the lead he ran like crap. The owners wanted to find him a new home.

I knew he might be hard to sell because he wasn't very big and was a little long in the pasterns. My friend looked at him and wasn't interested. I jokingly told Ty that maybe I should buy him for a dressage horse. Nah, he's too short for me. Ty said that he wasn't and that I needed to get over the height thing.  The more I thought about it, the more it seemed worth a try. He was extremely athletic and smart. I didn't have a dressage horse of my own at the time. Why not? Sure, I'll take him. Always the voice of reason, Ty asked me if maybe I thought I should ride him first. Oh yeah, that might be a good idea.

I threw dressage tack on him and trotted him along with one of the racehorses Ty was jogging, thinking I was going to be pissed if I got run off with on the track in a dressage saddle. Beefs was actually really soft in the mouth, almost too soft. He wasn't spooky and was steerable. Good enough. Not for Ty. Why don't you ride him in the rodeo arena (that is connected to the track). Um, okay. He was really good, but the whole circle concept was pretty new to him. He would trot half of a perfect circle and then drift towards the track for the other half. By the end he had figured it out. To top it off, he didn't spook at the flags and banners flapping in the wind or any of the other scary looking things in the arena. Okay, sold. Ty traded out what the owners owed for training for Beefs. Best. Gift. EVER!

I'll never regret buying him. I bought him with the intention of selling him down the road, but I'll never be able to do it. He will be with me or someone in my family (I want my niece to be able to learn on him and show him) for the rest of his life. I couldn't have found a more perfect imperfect horse.

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Sunday, March 2, 2014

One to remember: Scherzi

I was reminiscing about Scherzi today and decided she more than deserved a write-up in my blog. Anyone who worked with this mare loved her. She was a complete pleasure to have in the barn and will always be an amazing horse!

Scherzi enjoying turnout in El Paso.

Scherzi is by Brahms out of Happy Scene, a Dehere mare. Our owner had claimed her out of Golden Gate for $5,000. Scherzi already had four wins out of seven starts and then also won the day the owner claimed her. I think she had around $30,000 in earnings by the time we got her.

Monday, February 24, 2014

A horse I adore

It's funny how there are certain horses that you just want to ride. Correct that: HAVE to ride or it'll drive you insane.

Me and Woody last year.

Woody came to our barn October-ish of 2012. He was such a friendly horse with a great attitude and I instantly adored him. I watched, practically drooling, as my fiancé rode him all last year.

Total blogger fail, reusing a picture, but I wanted to show why I was drooling and couldn't access my pics of him.

I wanted to ride him SO BAD, but I figured he was probably just a little too much for me to handle and it was probably better for the horse if my fiancé kept riding him. Then the meet was over here and his owner wanted to bring him back to Golden Gate for the summer (he lives in that area and enjoys watching his horses run in person whenever possible). We ended up getting him back in Phoenix, as the owner had said we would.

Yesterday, I was watching my fiancé track him AGAIN and decided I could do okay on him. Due to a tragic experience with a moronic shoer (not ours), he is just coming back from a layoff and is only jogging right now anyway. So, I asked the "boss-man" if he thought I could track him. He said yes without even hesitating. Woohoo!

So, I have to interrupt my story really quick to explain how I feel about tracking racehorses. It's not necessarily my favorite thing to do. I don't mind being on the horse, I'm not scared of falling off. Getting run off with, though I don't love it, doesn't really scare me as long as they aren't rank about it. It's the things I can't control.

A picture from when I was learning to gallop. Not sure what the hell I was doing....

There are very good riders at the track. There are also some very bad ones. There are also some very crazy horses. Combine the psycho horses and the bad riders out there and anything can happen. That's the part that freaks me out. Put me on a track with just a few other horses and I'm fine. Add fifty horses and so begins my hyperventilation stage. The hardest part for me is just getting on. I think too much. I've seen too many bad wrecks. I worry too much about what can go wrong. Literally, my hands are shaking by the time I get legged up. On a good note, once I'm on their back, I'm fine. So, If I actually ask to track a horse, you know I must REALLY like them.

Today I tacked up the horse my fiancé was going to take and then I tacked up Woody so we could get them out at the same time (sorry I didn't get any pictures, my photographer was on a horse). It was weird, I didn't get nervous at all. For some reason I just felt like I would be okay on Woody. No matter what happened.

How Ty reminds me to put the blinkers on.

He walked to the track with his ears forward on a loose rein. Totally relaxed.

I've learned a lot about riding just from watching good riders. Trying to immitate what they do has gotten me a long ways. My fiancé had been riding him with a long cross (longer reins, into contact, with the reins crossing between your hands). It's not hard when you're sitting down (racetrack term for posting). Doing it while standing up makes it a little harder because you can't use the contact for balance like when they are pulling you around with shorter reins. The main problem with this is if they throw their head up and try to take off, you're scrambling for the reins or you fall back and hit them in the mouth. A long cross is all good when you're in shape, have good balance, and are confident in your skills. Me, the balance part is okay. The other two, not so much. In any case, if that's how my fiancé rides him, I'm going to also. I'm competive that way.

Woody galloping out after working.

Fortunately, Woody was AWESOME! Since we are letting him gain strength by carrying himself instead of holding him together, there were a couple of times his head came up. Not very bad, but just enough and just quick enough for me to lose contact for a couple of strides. Thank goodness for having all those dressage lessons of sending horses forward into the connection being hammered into my head. When he did it, I just put my leg on and he went forward dropping his head back into a nice contact without me having to shorten/adjust my reins. Woody did the last lap staying loose over his top line and using himself well. He got into a really nice rhythm! I didn't have to do much other than soften him a little bit here and there.

We pulled up and he just stood there while I watched our other horse go for a minute. Then he walked off of the track and back to the barn like a perfect gentleman. (One of the worst parts about galloping can be just getting them to and from the track.)

In the whole scheme of things, jogging a horse a couple of laps isn't a big deal. For me, it was since it was Woody. I think I would have been heartbroken if I hadn't gotten along with him. Why it should even matter, I don't know. Maybe it's because I like him so much or because I needed to prove something to myself. It probably doesn't really matter why. What matters is that riding him completely made my day!

For some reason getting on Woody today felt like it brought me back to the rider I used to be. The one that had confidence in her ability and complete faith in her horse.

See how loveable he is?

The bad part: now I want him for a dressage horse even more than I already did. Crap!