getting payed

I am on staycation this week. Instead of sleeping longer, I've kept my alarm set for work hours. I've swapped getting ready for work, with getting ready to do horse chores. It's much faster, easier and far more enjoyable. There is no dress code, the horses could care less what I wear. All four of them have been so good, and sweet. It's too dark for pictures during chores, but I'll try to capture a few. It's warmed up a little, and today there is this odd bright thing in the sky - I think they call it the sun. Not sure, haven't seen it for a long time. 

The funny part is, I look forward to my staycation morning routine (and I'm not a morning person by choice). I am getting payed more then my design job could ever pay me. The satisfied feeling of spending time with our horses and caring for them is priceless.

It is really making me think...


because of you

For many years I handmade a good half of my Christmas cards. It had become a family tradition, that included bribing asking my family to take professional photos. I liked the tradition and "documentation" of how our family evolved over the years. I also enjoy the creative hand work of making cards/scrapbooking, altho I can't seem to pull those types of projects together - but once a year I do. 

Every year we alternated, one year I had the kids only photographed and the following the entire family. As a reward, I would take them out to eat after. Some photo outings even included new articles of clothing. Not a bad deal if you ask me, and we always ended up having fun (and have some silly photo memories) especially when we found a creative photographer. Last year I couldn't pull off the photoshoot or card, for different reasons. But this year I did, because of you.

While I didn't do the professional photo outing/dinner thing, I did make my own annual Christmas card!! Shirley, Fern Valley, Dreaming and Wolfie inspired me when they commented on my photo. Not a traditional Christmas photo perse, but I decided to use it for the cover anyway. I usually hand stamp the covers, and put family photos inside. I wasn't sure how this years card would come together especially with a photo for the cover, but it did. After taking a year off, I was going to let the card tradition go all together - but I'm glad I didn't. I used all my own photos on the card below, and truly enjoyed doing the hand work.

While we still may do the occasional family photoshoot outing, in the interim I plan to continue to create and feature my own photographs/composites in future cards - most likely with an equine flair. It will be interesting to see what transpires each year. Thanks for the inspiration, in more ways then one.

2011 Christmas Card cover

Inside spread

Wishing a Merry Christmas to all my blog friends!!


life is hard

I've been somewhat absent from blogging, for no particular reason. Busy? Yes. Still transitioning additional work responsibilities, which included travel to the "windy city" for a couple days. Nothing horse to share? Yes. My horse time is limited at best, chore related and savored on the weekends. WI is less then pretty with it's early darkness, gray days, mud and bare trees? Yes. Doesn't inspire me to take photos. In fact, I've taken none. I've popped into the blogsphere occasionally to catch up with other blogs, reminding me why I blog in the first place. To share and experience horses with other aficionados, the good and the sad.

Tears filled my eyes for 50+ Horses has suffered an unexpected loss, and now faces a hard decision. Take a few minutes to visit her, and share. Life has been hard. After sending my heartfelt support, it spurred conversation at our house. 

First came my concern, with our own horse living situation. Altho dynamics have changed within our herd, I'll never trust Old Man again. Who knows when he could decide to strike out, and unlike our horses when he does his intent is to injure. Nemo now herds him around, but Koda is still on the "out"...I'm glad my horse is smart. We've made what adjustments we can, mainly feeding earlier and later. Other then chow time, when the residents get turned out they've become a relaxed herd of six (four are ours, two are not). It's an odd pecking order, that rotates. Koda moves the pony & Cierra, and both of them move Old Man. Whatever, as long as it works and no one gets injured.

Harmony is doing better. The gradual turnout time seemed to work, and her girl took her horse to work one day (she recently started working at our vets) for an Electrotherapy treatment. She is so happy to be back out with her herd full-time. The ground is so hard and uneven, hoping for no set backs. So far, so good. We took apart the makeshift stall, and opened up the rest of the walk-in. Just in time, winter arrived this weekend.

Next came, what would we do if the un-thinkable happened. What if one of our horses changed demeanor and intentionally injured another? I hope I never find out. If that isn't a double whammy, I don't know what is. On that note, I'm off to feed & hug...wishing you an easy living horse-filled day.


it's never too early

I'm pretty excited about the upcoming Midwest Horse Fair for several reasons. They are bringing the Extreme Mustang Challenge back. I'm hopeful enough trainers applied? The past two challenges, I followed training blogs & learned from them. It was heartwarming to see them come full circle as a team, many unable to part with their beloved Mustangs. Amazing things were accomplished in a short period of time.

They have changed numerous things up. Among them, presenters. This year Al Dunning is coming. I've never seen his presentations in person, but if they are anything like his books - they will be good & sensible.

I was happy to see the big Saturday night show change to something beside jumping. I truly enjoyed it the first year, the second not so much. Too repetitive for me. The fair's overall 2012 theme is Horse Heritage, they always do a nice job of working it. Saturdays "Epic Night of the Horse" will be no exception, and should be entertaining. "The audience will take a journey through the past of the horse and witness how horses have shaped the history of nations and the cultures of millions. The evening show will consist of roughly 20 acts with performances ranging from reining to dressage and Spanish horses to jousting. Although the acts are comprised of various genres from the horse world, they will all be connected by a continued storyline." Most acts will be professionals, some will be locals. It's good to mix it up.

An interesting change, is the addition of Taking the Reins a hands on type of event taking place, um in an entirely different month. They are mix-marketing it...not to be confused with Midwest, it is presented by them. I'm sure we will check this new event out, however pretty sure I could do without the Project Cowboy reality "show" portion. Sounds hokey. Maybe it's not? It will likely bring appeal to the younger crowd. Will I watch it? Perhaps, out of curiosity.

Something that hasn't changed is the Friday night PRCA Rodeo, good thing too - we love it!  It's always a highlight.

Midwest is a huge fair, and well worth the trip for travelers. Say what? it isn't until April? Yes, I know - but it's never too early for fact finding & planning!!

ps tickets are already on sale 


another leg?

Everyday I don't get to see her, I ask. Usually I get "she's ok". Last night when I asked how Harmony was the answer I got was different, "sore on another leg". What! another leg? She's only got one left that isn't giving her grief.

She seems to be caught in a vicious cycle of hurt, getting better, and more hurt. Harmony is under vet guidance, and has responded to the various treatments. Her girl does her follow-up care, and does it well. Everyone reminds me it could take many, many months for her to completely heal. I get that, but the traveling cycle of hurt is down right scary. A person has to wonder if one thing isn't causing the other.

After making my point well heard, we got some cow mats to help her be more comfortable while stalled. She get's daily turnout, within her limits, and is a good patient. Better then I would be. Not much else we can do. Winter is looming, and going to complicate things. I sure hope Harmony gets better, sooner then later. Not only for her sake, but for her girl.