Friday, August 13, 2010

August..What the HECK?

No way. SHUT UP! It can't be August already!! I am not sure what I did in July, yet. I'm not ready for that month where people start saying "back to school" all in one word, and leaves start to turn..well, a color other than green (can't bring myself to say it yet). I'm so not ready. *stomps feet in a pile of leaves*

This week has been crazy busy, but that's how I like it when my Michael is gone away for hunting season. He will essentially be gone for the next two months, so we try to stay busy and distracted and time goes faster.

Monday I took Duvall to Ridgeway Farms, a riding stables where we like to hang out. Its about 40 minutes from home. Chena rode him and did some of the jumping courses there for awhile. We got him settled in his stall, and then we drove on out to Sterling, where we picked up a new miniature horse, Stormy Night's Delight "Stormy" to bring home for me to do some training with. He is recently gelded, and still acting a bit like a stallion, and I told his owner that I would do some clicker training with him to settle him a bit. He's a super cutie. :)

Penelope worked with Carhartt at home on some on-leash heeling, and learning to sit each time she stopped, with him beside her. It went very well. He was picked up by his family that evening, so now we only have Pluto at home. From four dogs down to ONE! That's wild. Before long we will have our three again, and then in mid November we will add 1-11 puppies..if all goes as we hope. If I could pick the magic number, I think I would choose 4.

Tuesday I worked with Stormy a bit in the round pen, and got him introduced to the other horses. He met Mukluk, with both of them on lead ropes, then one tied and the other loose, and then finally face to face and both loose. I wanted to determine which one would be dominate and bossy, and who would rule the pecking order. At first Stormy scared Mukluk, but he quickly bounced back and remembered that he can even boss around our full size horses, so he turned the tables and now he's in charge in mini-land. :)

Mukluk and Stormy getting to know each other, face to face! (waaaay face to face!)

We had a meeting at the homeschool office, and we picked up our brand new laptop we are leasing for the school year. Yippee! The girls picked out some movies and books to get started with in the new school year, as well.

Wednesday we went back to Ridgeway stables with the trailer. Chena rode a new horse she is helping to train, an Arab named Topanga. She's a beauty! After she worked with her, Penelope had her lesson on Topanga as well. I see a real friendship in the works for those two! She hung out by her stall for a long time after she put her away. Chena got Duvall out, and rode him for quite awhile. She was trying him on some bigger jumps. She did great! I was supposed to do some dressage on him, but time got away from us and it was time to head out again.

While we were there, one of our friends at the stables was getting all dressed up to have her senior pictures taken with her horse she boards there. I could not resist following the photographer and grabbing some shots of my own. Her dress was super duper cute, and she even did some jumping. Interesting riding attire...I love it!
This one I had to change to black and white...she looks so ethereal to me in it.

I drove over to see Dandelion, which is near Ridgeway Farms. I miss her SO MUCH! I don't know if she is quite ready to be bred yet, but getting close. I told her to "get it on" so she can come home! LOL. I'm pretty sure she winked at me.

Back at Ridgeway, we hooked the trailer back up (I had to drop it to run errands) and loaded Duvall. It was around 5 pm and barrel racing/pole bending started at 6:30 at the rodeo grounds. Chena wanted to run Duvall so we headed that direction, so we could have time to warm him up.

She had a great time, and improved on her times in both events. We are not serious barrel racers, its just for fun...and she likes to do it once in awhile. They have it every Wednesday night, all summer long. Most are competing for points, to win saddles and other awards at the end of the season. But there are a few, like us, who only show up a few times a summer. Everyone has a good time, and cheers each other on!

Here's Chena on Duvall doing barrels...
And pole bending...

I visited with my horse buddies while we watched our girls ride. One of my friends said she was going team penning the next night, there at the rodeo grounds. I had heard about it, of course, but never really considered doing it. Well, she told me I would LOVE it, and she worked hard to convince me to try it the next night. I finally said okay. She even said she would pick me and my horse up and bring us.

So Thursday night, she picked us up with her trailer, loaded Summer in with her two horses, and off we went. I was nervous as heck. I had never done it before, and everyone else had been doing it all summer. My horse had never chased a cow! I had no idea what to expect. I got there, tacked him up, and then headed out into the warm up arena. After I had galloped around a bit, did some circles and got him warmed up, I was not as nervous and I was raring to go!

It was a TOTAL BLAST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I cannot say enough how much fun I had. We rode, wild and fast, and rounded up cattle, (they wore tags, and we had to "cut" out the cows and drive them into the pen, by their numbers.) working in teams of 3. Summer did a great job, for his first time, and he was not afraid at all. We had a "draw" so we didn't know who we would be riding with each time. Or what cows we would be cutting out of the herd. I felt like a kid again, riding the way I used to ride when I was fearless and free. And shouting and hollering at the cattle! It was a rush, I tell ya. I can't wait to go and do it again.

Now its Friday night. The girls were invited to a sleepover, and I was invited to my mom's house for pizza and hanging out. It was great, but I came home early. Its been a busy week and I'm tired! (and a wee bit saddle sore..) So I'm munching on Poppycock (popcorn treat) and contemplating bedtime since its after midnight. Tomorrow is my niece's 15th bday, a bowling party (or a beach party if its not raining....fat chance!) in town. I have to pick up the girls on my way. Sunday we are bringing Duvall home, because we have a horse show on Wednesday. Its our last one this summer!
And I leave for Portland and the AMERICAN IDOL CONCERT in one week!! Its in all caps because I'm SO stinkin excited!!!!!!!!!!


Krystyn said...

Hi...I saw your question on my site, Krizzy Designs (I didn't see your email address). Yes, I still design sites for blogger, too. Please email me: krizzydesigns at gmail dot com

Kim said...

This summer went by SO FAST. I wish it had been a little less rainy and windy, but maybe that means next summer will be sunny and hot.

Love that girl's senior pictures—so unique!

You'd better post about the American Idol concert when you get back!

Mere said...

You've had your hands full sister! I think Stormy is a beauty!! Dandelion better hurry up because I miss seeing pictures of her! I'm pretty sure Penelope is destined to be a famous horse trainer and Chena, a barrel racer! It just looks like something that comes so nautral to them. I'll be waiting for those AI Concert pics.

Love, Mere

Margo C. said...

Love seeing your updates! Thanks for being a wonderful family for Duvall! Awesome photos!