Back in the game

Happy Monday morning!

Y’all. This weekend was pretty great.

I will try and keep it short and sweet on the word front. We know how I can be a bit…long winded. Yes, I surprise myself. Another fun thing about blogging. Anyway, I got in tree rides this weekend. These days that is pretty good!

So, first. I rode the mare horse. That is what my dad affectionately calls her, ha! Cheetah. Cheetah Beetah. The Beets. She goes by many names. On Saturday she was my angel girl. She was being so sweet and was surprisingly focused and relaxed for just coming back into working regularly. This might mean she will be not so great for the next ride, but I am not going to focus on that. I am choosing to focus on the good and allow the good to come through on our next ride. AHA moment. I round penned her briefly to get her warmed

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SOURCE HERE! SO FUN!

up before I even mounted. She seems to appreciate that most of the time. In the beginning, I thought she might have had a broom stick up her bum as she was doing her best old west bronc impersonation. It was not a very good likeness, but for me it was quite comical. Once I mounted up it felt almost like I had been riding her every day…except that she is pretty out of shape which is to be expected. She was relaxed and forward off my leg and seat, very between my legs, thinking not reacting. On the aids, if you will. I kept it pretty basic so we could stay well seated within her brain. If I start to ask her too many questions before she is ready, we move straight into the reactionary running side of her that has no bottom to the tank. She was the perfect Appendix Quarter Horse, the best of her full 50/50%. Man, it felt great! We did some big relaxed circles with some yielding in both trot and lope/canter and then called it a day to go for a cool down walk/hack up to the front gate and back. I wanted to continue going, but I decided it would be best to finish on a positive note…another AHA moment. We have all the time in the world for longer rides when she is back in shape and going consistently.

Pre-ride photos…It was one of those crazy foggy days where the fog does not clear for hours.

Cool down walk and post-ride photos…

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She has model poses.

Then I rode Second Chance, Chance/Give Me A Chance, Chance. I am not sure which descriptor name I like more. His name is Chance and we took a chance on him. He has worked out very well for us! He has his quirks, like they all do, but once he realized we were team players, he blossomed. I need to show you his ‘before’ pictures. Anyway, he was pretty darn good too. He is a very lazy horse and I am not sure who worked harder, me or him. If he could get paid for stopping and resting in the shade, he would be a rich…err…horse. Just the thing we want for beginners! We had a good arena work and then went down to check the cows. He is your typical ranch style, grade QH. Built like a tank with an unknown history. The poor guy already has half a winter coat (makes me worry that winter is going to be bad!) and needed a good hosing off after our ride. Good thing it is warm enough for that.

Last but certainly not least, I rode the Lito Man. He was pretty good. Not as amazing as he has been, but certainly not bad. I was a little all over the place, so it was mostly all me. It was is ninth ride I believe. We worked in the arena first. It lasted a little longer that I wanted it to, but I was looking for a good stopping place. He is very hard to get forward in the arena. Anyone else with young horses have this problem? I think I am going to get a friend to come out and ride another horse while I ride Lito and get a good forward pasture ride soon so he can see what it is all about. After the arena, we took a walk to the river and back. Here is his pre-ride shot. Can you see his 50% PRE blood? He deserves more text, but I said I would keep this short and I have not! He will get his own post soon.

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What positives did y’all have this weekend that you are going to focus on?

Have a great Monday!

 

…So NOW…

Is there a podcast or something that you regularly listen to? Share!

I go through times where I mostly listen to music and then other times where I mostly listen to podcasts. I have been on a little podcast stint as of late. I feel the need to share the greatness of St. John the Divine Sermons and Lessons podcast! I find it truly helps me stay in the right frame of mind, reminds me of what is truly important, and keeps my eye on the prize or end goal. It makes me think and puts an extra zip in my step.

I like to listen to sermons etc. on podcast, online, or radio because I am often at the farm during services. I try to go to bible study during the week, but sometimes it just does not work out. Yesterday, while driving the hour to the farm after work to take care of a water leak and check up on everything/everyone, I was catching up on my SJD podcast.


Have a listen to what really spoke to me. Rocked my world. Floated my boat. Insert them all here, because that is what it did for me! It is a quick 35 min lesson by Meg Rice. I love to listen to her! “God moved…His power at work within you…God will meet us in the everyday things of life…see the burning bushes in our lives…God wants nothing more than to communicate with us…SUNRISES, SUNSETS, STARS, ANIMALS…whatever it takes….eyes to see when He is reaching out and talking…ask for your burning bush…don’t be so busy you miss it…HERE I AM…YES…our promised land is a state of the mind and the soul and the spirit…walk through our wilderness and reach the fullness of His intimacy and LOVE…FAITH.” Sitting in my car listening, it felt as if I was there, sitting in a chair, listening and laughing with everyone else. It felt straight from God, through her mouth, to my heart. That might be cheesy, but it just is what it is. It was also recorded on a special day for me!

LISTEN NOW!

My girl Darcy had so much at the farm yesterday evening. I walked down to the pond to sit with the horses and somehow she missed the memo that I was going . Once I was down there I looked around for her, and nowhere was she! I looked up towards the house and called to her. Bounding down she came. Once she saw me on the other side of the pond, she sprinted to the shore. To my surprise, she swam across the pond to me instead of running around. You do not know my dog, so I will explain my surprise. She is a full blooded outdoor bird dog, but a water dog she is not. Now, she can swim, do not get me wrong. It is just not her strong suit and she prefers to just wade in and then wade out never getting to swimming depths. Not often will you see her just swimming…as in I have NEVER seen her do it on her own accord, but swimming, swimming, swimming she came to me! It is a big deal. I just love her and love that the feeling is mutual. Man, this week with my animals has been great (Click here if you missed my telling of this weekends love fest)! My heart is full and my cup runneth over! I have even gotten hugs from the nephew and niece.

I have been a bad dog mom and have not given her much time lately on the blog here! Bad, bad. Here she is posing with a nearly destroyed toy…really though, she is hard to catch in a good photo!

Please forgive the messy background…

Have a look at a little snip-it of my hang out session…turn the volume all the way up! You know how I love my grazing noises!

 

Lead with love, dear readers!

Drives me CRAZY…

Do you know what drives me absolutely, up the wall crazy?!?!?! When I have a few lyrics of a song stuck in my head and I can not call the name of the song! I either need to listen to that song at that moment or I am trying to tell someone they need to listen to it at that moment. LIKE RIGHT NOW! It drives me bonkers until I can figure out what song. It is so bad that I usually can not do anything else. I google and google and think really hard. If I am lucky, I remember quickly. If I am not…well…it has taken me a couple of days to recall. To me, it is like having something stuck in your teeth when you do not have any floss on hand. Do you get it now?! CRAZY! It always appears right on the tip of my tongue, right within reach, and yet so so far away in the depths of my mind. It happened to me this very morning. It took me till now to name the song. Man. The relief when it comes to me is just as real as the frustration. Sigh.

What song was it, you ask? Oh, good! I was hoping you would!

OK, so I will get to that. Remember the other day when I posted the follow up to Truth, Speaking of truth? I shared with y’all the song by Sean McConnell, Praise The Lord. If you missed it then, or even if you didn’t, have a listen and or check out the lyrics. One of the lines states, “I find I know less as I come to know you more.” Is that not the truth? We get so consumed with our own knowledge and preconceived notions in our heads that we miss Him for who and what He truly is. It is a little like that whole forest for the trees bit. Working with horses is the exact same as our faith, relationship with God, and life. The more we learn, open, and improve our skills, the more we realize that there is sill so much to learn and to do to get better. We must continue to strive and never quit questing. AHA moment right there.

Anyway, that line got me thinking, you know, the way I do. Thinking about all the multitude things I do not know and how small we are compared to the greatness that is. I remembered that song by Ryan Bingham that was in the movie Crazy Heart. The lyrics are great, just my kind of song about writing a “book about what I don’t know,” should know better, where the wind is blowing. All the things. You know, the wind sure seems to blow from one place and come back around…

…that is a story for another day, I digress. Thanks to theshmcc on YouTube for the vid. Then that song got me thinking about our lives as books. Whole books. Not just a page (open that door for all the metaphors!!!). A culmination of all the things in our lives as a whole. THEN that is when IT happened…the terrible awful, my brain quit and I could not call the song that was on the tip of my tongue. It felt like another Ryan song, but then it could have been somebody or so and so else that is similar to Ryan in the whole of Texas Country. All morning it was like a bur in my saddle pad. I googled and thought and googled again.

All of a sudden someone hit fast forward and turned the volume up and I got a whole line of the song rushing to the front of my brain. It came to me! It was another Ryan song, ‘Snake Eyes’ (lyrics here)! I could talk about this song for a while, but what made me think of it was the line, “bind me down, I’m a book not a page.” Have a listen and enjoy this great video shared by Lost Highway Records on YouTube.

I will let that sit with you, dear readers.

I hope you enjoy. Share your thoughts!

My supervisor…

Please allow me to introduce you to my supervisor…He answers to Lito, but his formal name is Manolito.

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He thought I was doing the fence repair all wrong. He was sure to tell me that if he only had thumbs, he would show me the proper way to do the work. He watched my every move to ensure his paddock was fixed to his high standards. In the end, he approved of my work.

I just love this guy. The feeling appears to be mutual, I think. He seems to always want to hang out with me. I could not ask for more. I am so blessed to have him in my life and, of course, to have the awesome mare that gave him to me. Seriously, the two of them, I am without words. Funny thing for a blog, no??? I promise to give them both their own posts soon. I tried to take some pictures of them this weekend, but I am not happy with what I got. I did get to ride my girl and give Lito some work. Lito was great. Cheetah was pretty good. I kept getting in her way. She had a little bit of the season change snots, so we took it pretty easy. Honestly, I need more work than she does. Going from riding multiple horses a day to only once a week when I am lucky sure makes my body do stupid things when I ride. I often find myself saying, “uh, hello, what is your outside leg doing?!!?” Or, “uh, your hands, have you ever done this before?!” I need rider boot camp and for life to slow down. Does anyone else feel this way???

I also gave my family’s other gelding, give me a chance, Chance a work and got several chores crossed off the list. The list never seems to get smaller though. It is like a roll that keeps rolling while things just keep adding. That is the way I guess. It keeps us busy!

Yesterday, instead of doing an All The Fall Things session, my cousin (I suppose now that we have gotten here, we shall call her Cousin H), another cousin (Cousin T), and I went over to our grandparents house to cook them dinner and spend some quality time together. We made burgers, hash brown casserole, roasted veggies, and apple crisp a la mode with caramel sauce. It was a winner of a dinner, I tell you! Sorry folks, no photos. Wah waaa. I know, but I was being present. We have to be. Every day is a gift, especially with my grandparents, and tomorrow is not promised. AHA moment right there…maybe the most important one to date. We are soaking up as much of them as we can. This grandmother (and really my grandfather too, but mostly her) is where most of my horse gene comes from. It is one of our special bonds. I showed her all my new photos of Cheetah and Lito and could not help but love them. She especially loves the Lito man. Let us be honest though, who would not? To me he exudes love. I feel I named him well! More on that in his own post ;).

Alright, on that note, I must get going. Go get with your family, either by blood or not, and share a meal. Share the love. Be present with them. Enjoy it!

Go lead with love!

I am lame. 

So. I am feeling pretty lame. I should have just gone to the farm yesterday after work. I didn’t want to sit in the car for an hour was my reasoning. I was too tired from working and vacationing. I was going to have a nice evening at home and be available if any friends wanted to do anything. Ha! That never happens when I plan for it! So, I stayed home, watched show jumping on tv, had a cocktail and ate pizza, and went to bed early. I will not admit to falling asleep on the couch before 8 PM. All I could think about was, “man, you are so lame. Why are you sitting here by yourself. You should be at the farm or out on the town.” I suppose I could have rieled up some people myself and gone out for a good time. Sigh. I really was tired! 

Anyway, I did get some good rest. I think I really needed it. I am up, dressed, and enjoying coffee now. I will soon load up the dogs and head out. I am ready for horse time! Y’all get ready for horse pics! I think I might give each of my dub duo an introduction to tell their story. What do you think? 

Before I do. Has anyone ever heard of Bola Pizza? I think they are a company out of Austin. Go look them up. I would link it for you, but I’m on my phone. You can buy their pizzas in the freezer section at HEB. At least that is the only place I have seen them here. Man. They are good. It is an expensive freezer pizza, but it is quality. I did not feel guilty eating this for dinner…well only a little. If you ever see them, stop and get you one. Did you like that?! I had to say it just like that. It was in my head like that! The best to me are the polka dot and the mushroom. I had the mushroom last night and I did not eat the whole thing! Go me!


Next time I will get a zoom picture of the pizza. I am new to this whole blogging thing. I am rewarding myself for taking any pictures!

Off to the horses I go. Go lead with love!

TGIF

I have made it to Friday, y’all. This post vacation week back at work has gone better than expected. However, it has all caught up with me now and I am sure glad today is Friday. I am feeling it, whatever it is, and am a wee bit draggy.

I still have not figured out exactly what I will be doing this weekend. I am feeling some veg time with some fall themed Hallmark movies. You know you love them, even if you will not admit it. I am a proud Hallmark lover!

I will absolutely be getting out to the farm at some point. I need some quality time with the dun duo like I need air to breathe. I also need to get them both back into regular work now that my trail riding vaca is over. What is your favorite way to get your horses back into regular work after life has taken over? I like to rotate round pen, riding, and lunging work until they are a little more mentally and physically fit. Then I transition into more riding work. I think this will be a Cheetah round pen then riding weekend and a Lito lunge and walk to the river weekend. I believe I am going to be by myself, so I have to be safe and not ride the youngster alone. Bummer. But, better safe than sorry. If it is not safe, it is not fun. It does not matter how much I trust him or believe that he would not do anything bad (I am nodding my head). He has less than ten rides on him and all horses are unpredictable. My game plan moving forward with Lito is to get a schedule going with family and friends so I always have someone with me at the farm. The sooner I do this, the sooner we will graduate to trusted equine citizen.

I think Sunday my cousin and I will do another All The Fall Things craft/bake/cook session. Earlier this week I was feeling the need for fall pumpkin flavored things. How 4f9bd57fdf06c591fbb3174fb379b2ddstereotypical of me, I know, but alas the NEED was real. I attempted to make pumpkin cinnamon rolls. I did not exactly follow the recipe…again, who is surprised??? Not a single person. I picked these partly because I wanted instant gratification. It called for the use of store bought dough! I could not handle the time yeast needs, I tell you. Anyhoo, I actually used the recommended dough and I think it is too buttery. Strange, right? It takes over the flavor. I did more on the spice front. More cinnamon. More nutmeg…the fresh graded…I can not go back to the pre-ground stuff. I added some ginger and cloves. Why not, right?! I added a dollop of cream cheese to the filling instead of milk. I skipped on the icing to conserve my calorie budget and I figured they would be rich enough. I was right, they are good enough without the icing. Do not hate me. I believe I will make something like this again, but I will spring for homemade dough. They both need and deserve it.

I also attempted making a pumpkin spice White Russian for a desert cocktail. I will let you know when I perfect that. It is not there yet. It might also morph into a pumpkin spice Milk Punch…I prefer Milk Punch to White Russians I think.

This best thing that came out of this pumpkin spree is that I made extra milk/pumpkin/spice base (you know, sans alcohol) for the White Russian…for coffee! You need to do this. Right now. It is good. Better than any pumpkin spice anything you can get at a coffee shop. I do not think I can ever order one anywhere again now that I have had the real deal.

Here is to hoping for some good horse time this weekend! What are y’all doing?!

Speaking of truth…

This guy (Yes, Sean McConnell again!) knows the truth! Thanks to Music Fog on YouTube for the vid. Our God is a God of LOVE! It is about the personal relationship between you and Him, not anyone else. He communicates with each of us in a unique way. As unique as each of us. For me, it is horses (animals in general), nature/outdoors, and music. That is what IT is all about! AHA moment. Have a listen.

How does He speak to you or where do you feel His presence?

Go lead with love!

Truth.

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AHA moment every time I am with them.

Have an open mind to receive the gifts! ALLOW it to happen! They are abundant! To me, horses are one of the greatest gifts from God. They keep me present and I am able to see, hear, and learn what He is trying to show me.

I started following Emily’s blog, The Exquisite Equine, and I love what she has to say about self discovery through horsemanship and being open to the gifts that horses have to offer us. Especially her two most recent posts entitled Just Let It Be and Expanding Trust. Hop on over there have a read. I could not agree more with what she has to say. To top it off, she has trained with Anna of One Horse Life. Jealous!

A ride in the Hill Country…

Please enjoy this scroll through of my ride with friends and fellowship in the Hill Country along the Frio River! Not many words needed, I dare say! If you missed the reveal of my gifts, check out yesterday’s post.

I had a little bit of traffic on Friday, but it was OK, I had great music. Petunia thought she would help herself into the yard when I got there. The Sunrise on Saturday was just…just. Beautiful!

Loaded up and pulling out Saturday morning!

We were so blessed to have no incidents while hauling and no traffic, either way!!! We only had great conversation and music! Oh, and plenty of great Texas views and beef jerky. Hey, we did not want to get hungry!

We met at a friend’s place in Bandera for a couple of days along with some other friends before heading to the Frio. They were all going on the ride. We had great times, story telling, rest, and sunrise/sunset times. Yes, that is me with my nails done. I had to hide the horse ruined nails, but who cares when your horses are that cute!

We lost someone along the way!!! Ha! Just kidding…

Ike getting fancy in his stall! I then added more shavings. I like to really bed them down. I also documented his BMs. You horse people understand that.

Now time for the good stuff…Riding snaps!

Hydrating…

Such beauty! God’s beauty!

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Me before we headed home…Ha!

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I hope you enjoyed! Have you gone on any fun trips lately?! Share!

Lead with love, dear readers!