Archive for June, 2008

and i’m pretty sure i now owe my life to the banana

So I’m playing around with Anna-Banana last night, who was having a grand ol’ time in the cool weather. BO comes out to practice showmanship with her two year old. She is literally having this horse sidepass the entire centerline, do a 540* pivot, and the sidepass back the other way. Over and over and over again. I’m mostly sticking to the rail, keeping out of the way.

Well, BO and her horse get way down to one end, and I had been doing a 20m circle at that end. She’s still sidepassing, but I figure her path and mine won’t quite meet – we were trotting just a shade faster. All of a sudden her horse freaks out (says “NO MORE!” I’m sure!), and starts rearing up and leaping backwards, rear up, leap backwards. 😯

This all starts about 10 feet away from us, and gets closer FAST. Anna was the one of all four of us to totally keep her cool 😉 She watched the rearing/leaping horse getting closer, and didn’t react at all. I’m still thinking at this point that if the horse keeps on her current path and I just keep us trotting on ours, we’ll be in the clear. But right as the horse was about two feet away from us (within kicking distance was my thought!) and still rearing, she also managed to finally yank her lead out of BO’s hand. Anna scoots straight forward a total of about ten feet – just clearing us both to safety as the mare reared up for the last time and flipped herself over. After scooting forward, Anna had turned to face the mare, and just stopped. No panic, no nothing, just watching (waiting for the next outburst I’m sure!).

I jumped off since now the other horse was loose. BO caught her horse, I got back on, end of story. But I’m pretty sure had I been on, oh, ANY other horse on the planet, it would not have ended quite so nicely!!


June 17, 2008 at 7:53 am Leave a comment

the benefit of having a sick pony

Yes, I’ve discovered there is one 😀

Sunday I of course left the barn very little. Monday I took the day off work, so more of the same. Yesterday I worked half a day, and was there before work and all afternoon.

But of course, it’s not like I could just stare at my pony nonstop the WHOLE time, so I watched selfcarriage on her training horses, I watched lessons, I watched everybody who happened to be riding. In between rides made good timing for taking Snow’s temp again. But meanwhile I was learning a TON.

Much of it was stuff I “knew” or had been told before. But even with the same trainer, WATCHING, or having things phrased differently when a different horse or student was invovled was great.

So I had all sorts of ideas floating around my head, and yesterday evening I finally braved being an hour away from Snow and going to ride Anna. Sure enough, I had the best ride EVER on her. Just wonderful!

June 11, 2008 at 7:04 am Leave a comment

weekend in review (or, too much excitement)

The short version: As of right now everyone is still alive.

The really really long version:

We’ve had our new-to-us 1977 fishing boat for about two weeks, and after tuning up the engine and completely overhauling the outdrive, my dad and I put the outdrive back on the boat, and started it up. RUNS GREAT! AND I got to play with power tools. We planned on taking it out this weekend, barring any weather issues 😉 Woohoo!!


I left work about 4:00. Got home and checked the radar, and decided I had JUST enough to go and lunge the Snow-pony before the storms hit. So I head down to the barn, yank the pony out of her stall, lunge her a bit, and put her back when the dark clouds started looking close. Well, when I went to put her back into her stall I noticed she hadn’t touched her food. She was eating her hay though, drinking water, and pooping. So, since I had added a new feed on Tuesday, we decided maybe she didn’t like the new feed. I told the BO that I’d bring out bags of JUST her old feed the next day.

I FLY home. The clouds are looking mighty dark, and there are tornado warnings everywhere (though not quite where I’m headed). One that caught my attention was the warning in Dewitt/St. Johns area, since our other pony is in Ovid, just north of Sleepy Hollow. I get home and my parents are in the driveway, watching the lightning show. In a panic I ask them what the radar looks like, and my mom said something about, “Oh, a tornado was spotted near Portland and it’s headed east.” I said, “Yep, and now it’s in Dewitt/St.Johns and it’s headed for Ovid!” Her eyes got big and she asked if her pony was okay. I don’t know!! We all trouped inside to watch the radar, and sure enough, they might as well have zoomed in on Anna’s pasture. I waited for it to clear the area before sending frantic text messages to my BO. She said all was well, but that it came way too close for comfort.

As soon as it seemed safe I drove up there to give Anna a once over and survey the damage. She wasn’t kidding when she said it came too close for comfort! The neighbors to the west had MANY trees down and completely uprooted. The neighbors to the east – a stone’s throw from Anna’s pasture – had their new steel barn FLATTENED, and pieces scattered for miles. But it arched just behind their pasture, and missed both barns completely.

The barn doors were blown in, but the barn was still standing. Amazingly enough, my tack was not only still there, it was DRY!

And the fencing was yanked off the t-posts, but it was still there for the most part.

With no power and no fencing, we opted to lock Anna in the barn for the night. But she didn’t have a scrape on her and was no worse for the wear.

Exhausted, I drove home.

I have 10:30 lessons on saturdays. But when I got out to the barn BO said Snow definitely did not like her new feed. She was still eating hay, drinking and pooping, and her temp was normal. So, we canceled my lesson since she hadn’t been eating, and I just walked around on her for a while. She felt fine! I left bags of just her old feed for dinner and breakfast Sunday, and figured that’d be the end of that.

Came home, ate some lunch, went and rode Anna and helped repair fencing. Headed home and waited for yet more storms to hit, which fortunately weren’t as severe.


I was just about getting ready to go check on my pony when I got an e-mail from my BO that she wasn’t eating even her old food, and she just wasn’t acting right. I about ran out the door, thermometer in hand. Lethargic, not eating, and now running 102.8. Called the vet and she was out in less than 45 minutes – by which time Snow’s temp was up over 104. Begin treatment for Potomac 😦

After filling her up with antibiotics and banamine, I cold hosed her to try and get her temp down. Left long enough to eat lunch, came back to hose some more, and braid all of that mane to get it off her neck and help keep her cool. Then I cold hosed her again. About 3:30 I finally decided to leave for a while – not much else I could actually do for her, and standing outside her stall and staring at her wasn’t helping anybody.

I’m driving home, and the sky isn’t looking anywhere near as dark as Friday night, so I’m taking my own time and obeying the speed limit signs (for probably the first time all weekend). I pull into the driveway and my dad had just finished mowing the lawn, so he’s sitting on the bed of his truck drinking ice water and trying to cool down. I’m just about to give my parents a pony update when we hear tornado sirens going off. My dad suggested we at least go inside and look at the radar, and see what was going on. My mom and I pull up the radar online and on the TV, and as the winds pick up my dad heads to the sunroom to watch. We don’t even have the radar up yet when all of sudden my (the sort to run outside and watch the tornado blow by) shouts, “Oh sh*t! Basement! NOW!” So without questioning him I yank the cords out of my laptop and we all run downstairs. The dog thinks this is a FANTASTIC game, and she’s running laps and pouncing on her ball while we find the cable and plug in the basement TV. It sounded horrendous upstairs. A few minutes later when it quieted down we all headed back upstairs. My dad and I went for the sunroom, which has a big view of the backyard and all the trees we have that like to shed big branches in storms. My mom went for the front window. She froze, stammering, “Um, um, um….”

We walk over, and see daylight where we shouldn’t and branches where we shouldn’t. Remember that new boat?

My dad calls the insurance agent immediately, who says we get $500 to cover the cost of damage to the boat and removal of the tree. Oh, and we have a $500 deductable. SOL. Thanks for the help.

So, let’s get to work. At the very least, let’s get some of the weight OFF the boat.

Okay, first we sawed off all the branches (well, my dad sawed them off and my mom and I carried them around the side of the house):

Then, just as we got as many branches as we could…

…These guys just happen to drive by

They asked if needed help, and we said no, but they put on the lights and got out anyhow.

So my dad kept with the chain saw

While this guy kept the tip of the tree from hitting the boat as it came down

Then a few more pieces of the trunk (clearly the hardtop is pretty darn strong!!)

After the weight was off, the tree actually started to right itself

What’s the reverse of “Timber!” ??

And this was where the firemen left us:

The boat, AMAZINGLY, is unharmed. Not a scratch on it! Even the antenna and the light on top lived through it.

By this time it was about 7:00, and I had to go check my pony again. Her temp was BARELY under 102, so I decided to cold hose her again, and then give her banamine before I left for the night. Hosed her down, brought her back to her stall. In the time it took me to draw the banamine and fill the syringe, she had kicked at her gut and gone down and up and down and up three times. Just great. So I quick give her the banamine. She goes down again while I put the needle in a safe place, and then I start walking her and walking her and walking her. I called my vet who put up with my whining about was she SURE there was nothing else I should be doing? 😛 Sure enough though, the banamine kicked in, and she perked right up. BO promised to watch her closely the rest of the night, and told me to go home. So, hesitantly, I did.

Then came time to pull the tree down for good:

Or not. After all of that, it didn’t want to come down any old direction. We actually had to move the boat, and let it fall down the way it went the first time.


Some more saw work…

Oh look, we have another tree down too!

Right about this time the pizza guy pulled, and at 8:30 or so we finally ATE!


Called in to work and missed a huge staff meeting because I had to take care of a sick pony 🙂 I LOVE my boss, by the way. Temp first thing in the morning (12 hours since last banamine) was at 100.8!! She had also pooped once and was picking at her hay – all VERY good signs! Feet were cool and not showing any signs of laminitis, and she wasn’t acting colicky or crampy either. I let her be for a while, watched a few lessons, braided her mane and tail, watched some more rides…finally decided enough time had passed to warrant taking her temp again around 10:30 and it was down some more to 100.4!

Vet came out for a recheck and more antibiotics about 1:00, and her temp was down to 100.0. If her temp was still down by that evening she could get a handful of feed just to see if she was interested. And a salt water slurry to get her drinking more. She wasn’t dehydrated, but she could have been drinking more. Gut sounds were much improved from the day before, and her feet were still cool/without pulse.

I went home for lunch, and planned to ride Anna. I ended up taking a nap instead 😛

Temp was up a little, but still okay by that evening (100.7). And she did NOT appreciate her saltwater slurry. I got her to hand graze for a few minutes, but she wasn’t interested in feed. BUT, she did have one fresh pile of poop waiting for (second one the day – both looking normal). Her feet still felt good. So, on the whole, still good. No further improvement, but nothing bad.


That’d be today. It’s only Tuesday? Really? Went out to the barn this morning before work. Temp was at a wonderful 99.5, and she had downed half a bucket of water. Also pooped SEVERAL times, which I was very glad to see. Still not interested in food, but that’s okay. I’m only working until noon, and then the vet is coming out again this afternoon for another check and more antibiotics. Still not out of the woods yet, but if we can keep her temp down and keep her gut moving, we should be okay. Hopefully. Fingers still crossed.

So yeah, I’m pretty much exhausted. That was far, FAR too much excitement. How was everybody else’s weekend?

June 10, 2008 at 8:03 am 1 comment

forgetting i have a horse to ride

Sounds crazy, I know! But I do.

At two and through the end of her three year old year, Snow was obviously not under saddle. So I’d do groundwork with her and then ride my mom’s horse. At the end of her three year old year, Snow was so green and so unpredictable, that I’d ride her, and then go ride my mom’s mare to make myself feel better.

Over the past month or so, Snow and I have finally reached a point where I REALLY look forward to riding her. Even so much as to be driving out to go ride Anna, and just counting down until I was done there and going to ride Snow. Not that I don’t still LOVE working with Anna, I’ve just hit a really good spot with Snow. We have our issues, but I’m starting to trust her. She tells me when I’m wrong, but she’s not stupid, and she’s not spooky. The more I relax, the more fun the rides become, and that’s starting to work in a great upward spiral.

So yesterday, while my mom was still contemplating the keep-or-sell-Anna-debate, I was sulking about possibly losing my “fun horse.” The horse I rode when my own was nothing but frustration. The horse I rode because I didn’t have a horse of my own that was rideable. Eventually I made my way out to the barn to see Snow, and she was wonderful. And somewhere in there I remembered that Snow is growing up, and I FINALLY have a horse to ride. A fun horse. A horse I like riding. And while I’m more than happy to keep riding Anna as long as I can, it was nice to be reminded that I have a horse too! It was definitely a long road getting to that point, but it’s pretty nice now, and only getting better 😀

June 6, 2008 at 11:10 am Leave a comment

five things you don’t know about me

Did you really think I wouldn’t notice those tags Halt-near-X and I will jump sweet jumps? And then not respond? REALLY? So what if your tags came in January and October of 2007. I noticed.

So I’m sitting here at work wondering what on earth to share with you all. This should be easy, since I rarely post non-horse topics on here. So in theory I could post anything at all (like, say, that I’m an IT major at school) and it would be something you don’t know. But that’s boring and I don’t think that’s how this game is supposed to be played. Not that I promise to actually be interesting or entertaining. It IS finals week, after all.

1. I put shredded cheese on my sandwiches.

2. I don’t drink pop (or soda or soda pop). It’s not some healthy mission I’m on. I never have. I don’t like it.

(jeez, two in a row about food….think I’m hungry? off to get a candybar, I’ll be back)

3. I’m always cold. Always. Those pictures from the other day of me lunging Snow? I was wearing a polar fleece jacket and I think it was 75 degrees outside.

4. I work in a cube farm.

5. I have a signed 8×10 of Johnny Depp 😀

I’m sure it’ll only take me another year to figure out who to tag in return 😉

June 4, 2008 at 1:56 pm 1 comment

fingers crossed…

The other day I put out a very formal and business like proposal to buy out one dollar less than half interest in my mom’s mare. Idea being splitting expenses and giving her some cash, KEEPING the mare, but still have her “belong” to my mom and giving her the right to final decisions should we disagree on something (unlikely, but it’s been known to happen).

I outlined riding, lesson, and showing rights, and responsibilities for board and health care (routine and emergency). I also proposed moving her to my trainer’s place so our horses would be together (and listed various reasons why this would be a better place for her than the current wonderful farm she’s at). I had a VERY convincing argument, if I do say so myself 😉

But, as I’ve told her, and you all have told me over and over, she simply canNOT sell that mare.

I’m supposed to get her response this afternoon. Fingers crossed!! 😀

And a couple pictures of my mom and her Banana for good measure:

June 4, 2008 at 1:31 pm Leave a comment

A few words on how horses haven't managed to kill me (yet...)
June 2008