Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year = New Me

I make New Years resolutions every year. It usually involves stopping drugs and trips to the porn store (things I don't do therefore I always keep my resolution.) I went to a Catholic High School and ALWAYS got into trouble with the Nuns because I continually said stupid shit like that at Lent. I was a horrible student. Actually, not horrible, but definitely a goof ball.

This year I plan to make REAL resolutions and keep them. I kept saying I need to write them down, I need to remember what my resolutions are so I keep them. Consider yourself lucky, you get to read my stupid resolutions (save yourself now!) I figured this was as good of a place as any.
Denali has resolutions she wants to make too, I told her I'd write them down on here for her too.

Here they go.

* Lose weight (I know, I know everyone makes this one!) However, I think I've gained 45 pounds since I got married. Seriously, 45 pounds! I've been married 3 years and I've gone downhill VERY quickly. I want to lose that 45 pounds before I'm 30 (December 7, 2010) so I have a lot of work to do.

*Stop snacking between meals (see above)

*No more Dairy Queen. :( Ophelia's mom and I are on a first name basis with the manager at Dairy Queen. Seriously, he gets a big smile on his face when we walk in. It's sad. We actually considered buying him a Christmas gift, but decided that would be creepy.

*Make healthy meals. Stop making my poor husband cook all the time. I cooked all the time in Denmark, and I think he misses that. I blame our kitchen, it's so small and I hate being in it.

*Exercise once I get the "OK" from the Doctor. I use to work out EVERY DAY, I even drove 10 miles just to go to the gym. Now I have a million excuses.

*Make less excuses.

*Less complaining at work. I promise to leave my principal alone! I don't complain as much as I do talk. I promise to not talk her ear off. I know I don't talk about her much on here, but she is amazing and I love her (but not in a creepy stalker way.) I don't get to spend much time with "normal" people so when I run into her I think I talk forever.

*Lastly, be a better horse mom. I have been sucking at taking care of Denali. I can't remember the last time I rode her! Actually it was the Sunday before Thanksgiving. Yikes. Sometimes I wonder why I still own her since I don't ride her, but I can't give her up.

Now for Denali's New Years Resolutions:

*Give Ophelia a 10 second head start before I try to attack her.

*Stop kicking the wall between mine and Juliet's stall when she looks over the top at me. (Boy does THAT piss her off.)

*Take bites out of apples and carrots instead of inhaling them all at once.

*Think before I freak out.

*Stop trying to kill small children.

I'm sure she has more, but that's all I have to write down. She's like for the BO's resolutions to include upping her feed and hay. That's not going to happen. It was a year ago today that I went to the barn for the first time, after being away in Denmark, to find out that she had lost a TON of weight and was "crazy." I really though I'd be less afraid of her a year later, but I'm not. I guess that should be a resolution-Stop being afraid of my horse. I won't say I'm afraid of her, but she does make me nervous!

What do you do for resolutions? Do you start them? I'd put down how much I weigh on here to document that but my husband, WHO I LOVE, sometimes reads my blog and I'll NEVER admit how much I weigh in front of him.

No news on "Little Gary." I hope that things are going well for him. Poor kid :(

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Bad News on "Lil Gary"

I got a message on my phone today about "Little Gary." He got thrown out of his new foster home. They were asking me if I could come get him today. Unfortunately I'm on the East Coast, and honestly, I don't know if I could handle him again. I'm afraid I wouldn't be able to do my job (Somewhat good teacher, NOT GOOD PARENT.) Regardless I don't need to do any thinking since I'm not available to take him. This is going to sound horrible. He needs a residential treatment facility. He's not medicated properly, and until he is, he's going to continue to be unsafe to himself and others. He needs to be in a place where they can safely take him off all his meds, and then figure out what works for him. I am trying to talk them into putting him back into my classroom. That would require him being back in my school district. It's a huge district so I'm hoping someone in the district can take him. Poor kid, I feel awful and so does my husband, but we both know that is not something we are prepared to do full time. Go ahead tell me I'm horrible. I feel it....

Other than that I fell down the stairs today at my parents. I was walking down looking back at my mom while talking... They have a Ranch style house, and when I hit the landing I stepped on one of her monster golden retrievers. I jumped up and then went backwards down the stairs. My Golden, who's AMAZING, came running over to me as I layed at the bottom of the stairs, and licked my face then took off running to find my dad. He then came back and waited for me until my dad came. It was a true Lassie moment. What a good dog. I didn't think I hurt anything, I mean my knee is already fucked up (potty mouth, I know.) However, as the day goes on my back is turning black. Not black n' blue, but black. It hurts so freaking bad.

Okay, off to sleep and try to figure out what to do about "Gary." Think good thoughts!!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Bah Humbug

This was my Christmas Present, I THINK I wrote about it. It is SO Beautiful!! This photo doesn't do it justice, but I wanted to try!

I hope that everyone had a wonderful holiday, whatever it is you celebrated. My husband and I are both from Pennsylvania so we flew back home last Tuesday. Needless to say I am NEVER coming home for the holidays again. I hate coming home. My mom, who I love, dis invited us to Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Needless to say things were a little bit tense around here. We spent the holidays with his family instead. Maybe someday I'll write more about that here, but I'm over it and am not in the mood to revisit it anytime soon.

My knee WAS doing better. I was doing stairs, I was bending it, it was feeling 80% better.... THEN smart one (me) hit it off of a chair. I honestly thought I was going to throw up. It hurt so bad!

Denali's good I guess, lol. I haven't seen her since the 19th. Her trainer called to tell me she cut her nose, but she was fine. I swear that horse can hurt herself on a dandelion.

We fly back to Seattle on Wednesday. I wish we had more time off before work started up again. I'm not ready to deal with munchkins yet. I know, I know, at least I have time off. I went to a Christmas party yesterday and the first thing everyone asked me was for some work stories. I told my favorite story from when I taught middle school EBD (Emotional/Behavioral Disabilities.) I thought that I'd share a trip down "Memory Lane"

Once upon a time I had a student. I got him as an 8th grader and needless to say I thought he'd be the most difficult student I've ever worked with. I even went as far to say, "I'll never have another student as difficult as ........ " FAMOUS LAST WORDS.

One year to the day I got a phone call that I'd be getting a new student who was having a difficult time at his current school. My supervisor told me that he thought he'd do well in my program. I normally have an intake meeting, but downtown gave me some story about him needing to be in a school and that we didn't have time for a meeting. (Mistake Number 1.)

His first day in our classroom (picture 5 feet tall, 280 pounds - I kid you not) he started out well. Cognitively he was really low and I suspect (still) a genetic disorder. I'm not a Doctor and keep my comments to myself on this. ANYWAY, he was sitting at his desk, I was helping another student when he took off ruaddling (running/waddling.) My assistant went out after him, and I assumed that he would get him back. After about a minute I got nervous, put my one student in charge and walked out into the hall. I didn't see them, so I peeked out the door to see this new student yelling every swearword he knew at my assistant. I got frustrated with my assistant for allowing him to get out of the building (seriously, he was huge and he couldn't really run.) I sent him back in and I walked up towards the student who took off down the street. It was raining out (December) and I had left my coat in the classroom. He crossed the busy city street and started to tear off fence posts and throwing them at me, followed by rocks, bird houses, mail boxes (I wish I could say I was exaggerating, but I'm sure I'm forgetting some things.) He was still ruaddling and I reached in my pocket for my cell phone an realized that it was back in my classroom. At this point I was waiting for the cops to show up for his property damage (our school was in a nice neighborhood) and I was PISSED. My supervisor didn't give me any heads up and just gave me this kid with no indication that he was capable of this kind of language/destruction. I didn't want to restrain him because at this point we were 10 blocks from school and I knew he'd put on an amazing show once I touched him.

I decided I needed help. I saw a house with some lights on and decided that I'd run up and ask to borrow the phone. He stopped ruaddling (like how I make up words?) when I went up to the house. He continued to scream and swear at me while I was knocking on the door. My conversation went something like this...

Me: "Hi, I'm really sorry for bothering you. I am a teacher at (such a such a middle school) and I got a new student who isn't doing very well. I was wondering if I could borrow a phone?

Woman (peering over my shoulder at her rose garden being destroyed by my student who was tearing them up and throwing them at me.) : "Oh, of course you can borrow my phone (peering back over my shoulder) Do you want me to call some help? (referring to the cops."

Me (who at this point started crying) : "No, I'll be fine, I'm really sorry about your yard, you can contact the school for reimbursement."

Woman (handing me a jacket: "Tell you what, don't worry about the yard. Take the phone with you and you can keep this jacket (which said Microsoft Executive on it.) Just bring back the phone when you are done with it."


I took the phone, threw the coat on and walked towards the student. He started swearing at me and continued to ruaddle down the street. The first person I called was our schools Jack Ass Security guard who told me he couldn't help me because I was off school grounds. Jerk.

The next person I called was my supervisor. That conversation went like this

Me: "Hi, is this Scott?" (Not his real name)

Scott: "Yes, Hey, How's it going with Gary (not the students new name and apparently my fake name for all my students.)

Me: "I quit."

Scott: "What? Wait, What?"

Me: "I quit, Gary is currently at the corner of such a such street and just climbed up onto a garage roof. "

Scott: "I'll be right there." (Seriously 5 minutes later he was there.)

At this point my student did climb up onto a garage roof. I was waiting for the cops to come, I was waiting for him to fall through the roof (the garage was built into the hill side so that's how he got up on the roof for those who were wondering.)

Guess what he did next? Think about it? What could he possibly do next? He stripped...Naked!

I'm standing on the street with clothes flying towards me. It was about that time that my supervisor showed up.

Scott: "Oh, wow."

Me: (at this point I had been in the rain for almost two hours and was PISSED): "Good Luck, I am going back to write my letter of resignation."

Scott: "Wait, please wait. Don't quit!"

Me: "Ugh, okay, but stop screwing me over and cutting corners."

Scott: "How do we get him down?"

We finally got Gary off the roof of the garage, I think he got cold standing there in his socks. We got him into my supervisors car and back to school. We took him to the nurse's office and stood around taking his verbal and attempts at physical abuse.

It was at this point he peed on me. I kid you not.

Fast forward a few weeks. I put behavior supports in place and got Gary "under control." I'm going to be conceded here since no one knows who I am. I am very good at what I do (which is why my supervisors screw me all the time.)

It was raining outside and I forgot my sneakers at home. I had my rain boots on, and was talking to Gary about the weather. I asked him about my shoes, wanting him to generalize.

Me: "Gary, why do you think I have rain boots on today."

Gary (who got a super intense look on his face. He was looking from my shoes to me, and from me to my shoes): "I know!," He said with a super excited tone of voice, "So when I pee on you your feet don't get wet."

Me: Sigh, "Yes, that's exactly why."

So, if you haven't figured out by now I have a VERY exciting job. I am never bored, and I am always busy with something crazy. I have a MILLION stories and haven't written any of them down, but often play with the idea of writing a book....someday.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

I'm still off on the back right

I am SO tired. I don't know the last time I have been this tired, nor the last time that my week has lasted as long as this. I thought that once Gary left that it would be a calm week. Instead they have all decided to fill the void of crazy. I was amazed at how crazy this week as been.

My knee still is killing me. I had my MRI on Tuesday and another appointment on Wednesday with the "On the Job" doctor. She tried to talk me into NOT going back to work. I said, "Oh no, I'll be fine." Ugh. I feel like I have cement in my knee. This, in return, makes me SO tired by the end of the day. I didn't tear anything, thankfully. However there is fluid built up around my knee that increases and decreases throughout the day. I also have something going on with my patella. She gave me some huge name, and told me that in her 22 years she has never heard of what is wrong with my knee (what the radiologist wrote down after my MRI.) I'm going to an Ortho doctor in January. I am hoping that by then it will be fine and I can cancel it.

Speaking of things that swell up throughout the day, Denali had her Sonogram today. The vet didn't find anything conclusive. She thought she saw "unhappy bone" in her fetlock, but we did X-rays 6 weeks ago and there wasn't anything MAJOR wrong with it, a little tiny shadowing, but that was it. I wasn't willing to re-do the X-rays. She's not off, it's not hot so I'm going to wait.

Denali's lessor came out Wednesday (maybe I mentioned that last time? I forgot!) and they had a lesson. I'm glad they seem to be getting along. Denali is a really good girl, but she needs ridden and I can't do that now. Boo. I'm glad someone can, and that she wants to ride her.

My mother and I got into a huge fight yesterday. I'm not even going to get into that, that's a whole other blog. My husband decided yesterday to give me my Christmas present. I'm in love. It's a photo of Denali's face he re-did using a program. It's BEAUTIFUL!! It looks like a painting, and I'm in love! He had it printed on canvas and I wish a picture of it would do it justice!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


Now for the story!

Monday (which is ALWAYS HECTIC in a BD room) my little guy was totally out of control to say the least. We all felt bad because we knew he was already in a horrible foster home and was probably really worried about going to another foster home. His bus was late because he tired to jump out of the back door so they had to wait for intervention to come ride with him. The entire day was concentrated on him. My poor other kiddos got neglected since at least two of us had to be with the little guy to keep him safe. It was very tiring.

Around 1:30 I got a phone call from the office that CPS was on their way and needed to talk to the little guy (I can't even think of a fake name for him.) I was confused, since I know a report was made a week ago, why they were coming that day.

The lady showed up and our conversation went like this.

"I'm here to see Gary" (fake name, see I can make one up!)
"Okay, I'll go get him, but it might be a minute. Last time I checked he was naked."

(5 minutes later after wrestling clothes back on him I walked him to the office.)

"Thanks. I need you to leave us alone so I can talk to him."
"I can't do that"
(At this point she got angry with me)
"I'm sorry, but I really need to talk to him alone and you'll just have to understand."
"Okay, but remember that was your choice."

(Office door closes)

( 0.3 seconds later)

(Office door opens)

"You can come in with us." (No shit! You think I want to be in there for fun!? "Gary" was unmedicated and totally out of control.)

During the conversation I found out that something really bad had happened to him in the morning. CPS decided that he couldn't go back to the house and the social worker would need to find him a place to stay for the night. I explained my concern over Gary going with people who didn't know what to expect. Yes, he's only 7, but he's very difficult to understand if you don't understand his background. He's very wild, and always in survival mode.

I walked back to my room and between the office and the classroom (20 feet) the Social worker had called me twice. She asked me if I was serious about taking him. I said, "Yes" because I didn't want him traumatized with yet something else added to his baggage. I needed to call my husband to get his SS number. He answered the phone and as I was talking to him I opened my outside door to see him standing there. He knew I'd be upset about Gary leaving, so he came to say goodbye too and to just hang out with my kids (I LOVE MY HUSBAND!) Long story short we became his guardians.

Last night was really challenging. I think he had a great night. It broke my heart when he started to make up his own bed on the couch. I know it's great when a 7 year old knows how to do things, but the fact that he was doing this because he's never had anyone to really take care of him is just so sad.

We watched Coraline and had dinner. My husband got him to eat all his veggies (something I've never been able to do.) He went "manic" twice during the night. I don't know how to explain that other than imagine Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. He'd go from totally sweet to trying to figure out how to kill us. The episodes lasted for 20 minutes and the other one was almost an hour. Gary finally fell asleep at 10:30 (we tried to get him asleep at 8!) He's on meds to help him sleep and we didn't have those either.

I think I slept an hour and a half. I kept imagining waking up with him standing over us with a knife. Sadly, he would do this if given the devices. It's really sad. I was really worried about the morning because it was my responsibility to take him to his day care to await his new family. Something he didn't want to do. However, in the morning he was back to being at total love bug. I got him there all on my own. He didn't even try to escape.

He is going to a Therapeutic Foster home. I hope they give him the chance he deserves. I hope they are really trained to take care of him the way he needs to be taken care of. I hope he has a wonderful Christmas. My husband and I are still in the process of finishing our paperwork. We'd like to be a respit home for him so we can still see him.

That's his short story. I have a million more. I should write a book.

As for my horse (that's why I have this blog right?) She's doing well. I took her bell boots off of her outside. She's to lazy to run hard enough to tear a shoe off outside. Sunday my hubby and I went out to see her (the fourth time he's seen her since May.) We walked into her paddock and she came nickering up to me. THEN she saw him, and she took off running to him. DENALI IS OBSESSED with my husband. She always has been since she first met him. I have no idea how she remembers him, or why she loves him so much ( I know why I do!) but she does.

Tomorrow the lessor is coming back out to ride her. I had my MRI this morning and have another appointment tomorrow. I'm walking better, but it still hurts. I am just hoping that it's fine.

Okay, I've had 3 hours sleep in 24. I'm off to bed!! Thanks for everyones comments! I'll let you know how Gary's doing as soon as I hear!!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Nobel Peace Prize

My husband needs nominated for it.... My student from the previous post? He's currently sleeping on our couch. He's unmedicated and we're exhausted! I'll post more later. I also need to tell you about Denali yesterday! This is my reminder!!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Sucking at Life

I don't think I really think I suck at life, but I feel like it. This has been a real emotional week for me. For once it's not horse related. Monday one of my kiddos came in with really weird marks on his eyes. He said he didn't feel really well. I showed one of my assistants this little guys face and asked her what she thought it was from. She thought it looked like the marks that people can get when they are asphyxiated. I was shocked and thought she was crazy. Who would do that to a little boy? I asked him how his weekend was and he said it was fine. I took pictures of his eyes, and decided to call foster mom (you read that right, foster mom) to ask her about his weekend. She told me that some "crazy lady" got "pissed" at him at church and jumped on him. She continued to tell me that he said he stopped breathing, but she wasn't sure because she walked away. This my friends is the hardest part of my job. What I wanted to say: YOU ARE A FUCKING MORON WHO WAS ENTRUSTED TO KEEP THIS LITTLE BOY SAFE. What I said through a clutched jaw, "Have you contacted his Social Worker?"

A little background on "my" little guy. He is only 7 and has been through 6 foster homes in a year. He is not an easy kid and anytime I mention something crazy that happens in my classroom it is probably him. He is the one who wrapped himself around my knee and hurt me. He's thrown glue at me, hit me, bit me, punched me, thrown all bodily by products at me, but through it all I love him more than anything. He reminds me so much of some horses I have known. I know that SOUNDS INSANE, but think about it? He's never been treated nicely by any human being. He's spent 7 years being beaten and neglected. He needs to know what a loving home is and I can tell you from conversations I've had with foster mom (we refer to her as his "handler") he wasn't get that from her. I could write a whole other blog just on him.

Back to Monday. I walked out of my office, picked him up and just started crying. I couldn't help it. My kids asked me what was wrong, and I told them I was just sad because I was getting so old. They bought it. I couldn't believe this lady! I asked him how Church was on Sunday, and he said, "I didn't go to church." I wasn't surprised. He loved his foster mom, and didn't want to get in trouble. A little while later, during Math, he said to me, "Have you ever stopped breathing?" No, of course not, but I didn't know what to say to him to make him feel normal. I knew from his social worker this wasn't the first time he's been choked. I asked him why he was asking me and he proceeded to tell me the story of church. How he was mad at this lady and kicked her, and how she jumped on him and pinned him to the ground with her knee. He told me how he saw his foster mom walk away and that was all he remembered.

I walked back into my office and called his social worker,her supervisor, my supervisor, and then CPS.

Wednesday, I found out that he was being removed from the home. I was so happy for him to be away from such a horrible woman. Then I found out that the new foster home was 75 miles away. I'm so upset. My husband, who is a WONDERFUL MAN, gave me the go ahead to try to get the paperwork in order to foster. We don't want children. Not anytime soon, Denali is enough of a financial (trying to think of a word to go here...burden?)

Thursday I found out that the paperwork wouldn't be through fast enough. The social workers supervisor tried to get the paperwork through, but it would still be about two weeks with all the holidays. He needed to be out of the home by Monday. On Thursday he asked me if he was a horrible boy. I asked him why he said that. Guess who told him that? I told him she was a liar and there was no such thing as a horrible boy. We talked about life and what he wants to be when he grows up. He told me he wants to be a dentist.....right after he's a murder. Sigh.

Friday we made gingerbread houses and watched Toy Story. It was a good day. I didn't have the heart to tell him he's leaving his school too. It's going to kill me on Monday to tell him it's his last day. His social worker asked us to wait.

My husband and I are still filling out the paperwork to be a respite home for him. That way we can go and visit him. In reality he should be in a residential treatment center. He needs 24/7 consistency and predictability. Mostly, he needs love. He can't trust anyone. He trusts me which I think is what kills me so much. He's made so much progress in the few months we've had him.

Today hubby and I went Christmas shopping for him. We wanted to make sure he has something to open on Christmas, and we're not sure if his foster family will do anything for him. I've met two kinds of foster parents, AMAZING and those who are in it for the money. (ONLY MY OPINION!) I really hope this one is amazing. He needs amazing. He needs a miracle !! We got him some clothes, a stuffed Lion (to remind him to be brave) and another little toy. I heard that song "I'll be home for Christmas" and started to bawl. PMS much? But still, I feel so bad for him.

Okay... enough of my ramblings. If you've gotten this far thank you. Maybe think good thoughts for this little guy.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Dear Knee, I hate you...

Still not walking anywhere fast... If you can call it walking...hobbling maybe. I had an x-ray on Tuesday, and of course that didn't show anything. At least I'm assuming that if it did the Dr. would have called me. I am going for an MRI on Tuesday. I'm pretty sure my leg might fall off before then.

Hobbled to the barn yesterday for Denali's first lesson with her lessor. I must say it was really nerve wracking to watch someone else ride your horse. She did great with Denali, but it was still nerve wracking. I kept thinking of getting sued for Denali freaking out or something. I guess she spooked once, but I didn't even notice. I was really proud of Denali. She hadn't been ridden for a month, and she did a lot better than I was expecting.

The lessor told me that she didn't think she could continue because she just got a huge docter's bill. I asked her if she could ride and didn't need to worry about paying for the lessons would she'd be interested still. She said yes. My trainer and I worked out a deal, and so Denali has a rider. If Denali was totally broke with zero issues I'd look for someone else, but this way Denali gets ridden/trained/in shape. I can't ride her and my trainer can't ride her.

Have I mentioned another boarder is on crutches too? There are only 6 or 7 boarders/leasors at the barn. That's pretty bad odds! I am not on crutches, I HATE them, but am starting to regret not having them....

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


I did something that I said I would NEVER DO!! I am actually still feeling a little ill from doing it... I added up every penny that I've spend on Denali in one year. ONE YEAR! I could have a very nice little down payment on a very cute car. I wouldn't change that for the world. This isn't even including blanket cleaning OR training!! I just thought of that!

12,453.73 + 350.00(4) = I don't want to know

I don't want to know + 89.00 in blanket cleanings = I think I'm going to be sick

I think I'm going to be sick+ $350.00 Insurance = I'm going to throw up

The amount of Joy she gives me? Priceless... Seriously I am sitting here thinking of all these incidentals that I forgot! Yikes.

You're probably wondering, "Why in the hell would you add up those numbers?" Well let me explain. I teach kids with SEVERE behavior disabilities. Yesterday one of my kids (who was naked at the time) WRAPPED himself around my leg. I wanted to get him off without touching him (and giving him the attention he was seeking) I lifted my leg off the ground and held it there until he got tired. It worked!! He let go of my leg. My knee? Doesn't work so much anymore. It was okay for a few hours and after work it totally crapped out on me. I've been resting it since yesterday and taking lots of pain killers. Fun times for me. I am going for an x ray in the morning. (Although I know it's not bone) I've been sitting on the couch since walking isn't so comfortable and going out and handing the pony beast? NOT EVEN possible. :(

Tomorrow night is suppose to be the lessors first lesson. I hope she can make it, she was sick on Monday. She sounds like a really good match for Denali who DEFINITELY needs ridden. She's so bored right now. I feel bad. I like having her where she's at because she's so well taken care of, but it is 20 miles through Seattle traffic. Sometimes it takes over an hour just to get there. Plus I can't handle the cold. Maybe someone needs to ship Denali and I to the South for the winter. 1st we need to win the Lotto.

Speaking of Lotto I bought a ticket yesterday. If I don't write for a few weeks just picture Denali and I sitting in Arizona drinking Mai Tai's. :)

Humorous Side Note: If you go the the Bad Way To Sell Your Horse link, the featured "bad seller" is the boarding barn that Denali was at before her new home. (Dec. 8 feature)

Monday, December 7, 2009

It's my birthday and I'll blog if I want to.

I know, that's bad right? I laughed as I typed it!

I went to the barn on Sunday and proceeded to have a HORRIBLE allergic reaction to horses/hay/dust. I really thought that maybe I might die. I was sneezing and hacking until late last night. I took so many different allergy medications that I figured I'd either A. feel better or B. die in the night. Sadly I don't feel better, but I also didn't die, which is a plus.

I hate being allergic to the barn. It makes me very sad. Luckily I don't always have such a horrible reaction every time. Usually I'm fine, but yesterday it was horrible. I'm also allergic to Denali. Only in the winter and the spring when she's shedding, and usually I can make it through. I wear those stupid medical masks which helps and surprisingly doesn't freak any of the horses out.

I've tried shots, I've tried medicine, I've tried diet... nothing works. It's been a while since I have had shots, so maybe I'll go back to that. When I went and got re-tested the doctor told me that people are either not allergic to horses or a little allergic. I'm moderately allergic. Something he said he's never seen. Interesting.

When I was little an allergic reaction would send me to the hospital in about .2 seconds. It was bad and I spent half of first grade in the hospital with breathing problems (which came from the reactions.) Stupid Asthma how I hate you so. Okay enough of my medical history! Happy Monday to everyone!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Another follower?

Sorry I'm easily amused. :)

I went to the barn on Friday night. It was "one of those days." One of my students got thrown off the bus AFTER school. The bus brought him back and dropped him off. Sigh. I finally left work at 5 pm and ran home to grab Denali's medication that was delivered. I got home and my upstairs neighbor was gone. And there sat my package on their couch. Sigh. I finally was able to leave for the barn by 7, about two hours AFTER I told my trainer I'd be there.

I think I was at the barn a whole two minutes when the barn owner (different from trainer) asked me if his horse looked okay. He hadn't eaten any of is dinner. His heart rate wasn't elevated, his gums looked good, but the look in his eyes told me that he wasn't comfortable. He kept stretching his neck out and making chewing motions with his mouth, but wouldn't eat. I got his mouth open and thought he maybe broke a tooth. I massaged his neck and was talking to his owner about calling the vet when Sox layed down on the ground. He asked me what I thought he should do and I gave him my anal horse owner response, "Call the vet now!" Sox refused to get up and the vet said he was 10 minutes away. I sat on the ground with Sox waiting for the vet after several futial attempts at getting him up. It was the weirdest expereince. Luckily the vet showed up just as we got Sox to his feet. The vet quickly determined that he had a (and don't quote me) hyper active colon. He was colicing, and he didn't think he would have made it through the night. I was crazy, especially it wasn't the experience I've had with horses colicing in the past. They've always been thrashing around, trying to roll, and looking at their stomache. (This was at my first barn.) We took turns keeping an eye on Sox until 11:00pm when I finally went home. I live 20 miles away and it was late. He looked good when I left. I'm glad I'm anal.

Today I went out to the barn and lunged Denali for a little bit just in her halter. She had a bug up her ass. I can tell she isn't enjoying being ignored and I feel bad. I'm glad she doesn't try to kick up her heels outside on the icy ground, but WOW she was wild tonight. I was just trying to check to see if she was still lame, but then I had to spend half an hour lunging her because I didn't want her to think she won.

1 point Me, 0 Denali

The one thing that I've improved on is I think I can say with confidence that she doesn't scare me at all on the ground anymore. I don't think she likes that I've gotten a lot more assurtive.

Tomorrow is my birthday the big 29. I won't be back out to the barn until Tuesday. I have already announced that I am going out to work my horse. We went out last night to celebrate. Let's just say it took me a while to get up this morning. On Friday I mentioned to two of my assistants that they should come out with us. My students were SO mad at me that they weren't invited to my birthday party. At least thats the way they put it. I told them I'd buy them cupcakes and that seemed to make them less angry.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Thanks Katherine!!

Here's my lease. Doe this make sense? Thanks to Katherine for her HUGE help at this!!

NAME OF HORSE: Storm City Slew (Denali)
SEX: Mare
AGE: 5
BREED: Thoroughbred
COLOR & MARKINGS: Black Bay, black mane and tail


The parties to this lease agreement are _________________(hereinafter “LESSOR”), a resident of the state of Washington, residing ________________ and ________________, (hereinafter “LESSEE”), a resident of the state of _____________ residing at ____________________________.

THE PARTIES, in consideration of the mutual covenants contained herein, do hereby agree as


A. LESSOR leases to LESSEE the horse on a month-to-month basis, beginning on
(_December 6, 2009_____). The LESSOR shall be paid by LESSEE as follows:
i. $0.00 for the lease of Denali
ii. $25.00 paid directly to Carolyn Parker for the first 4 lessons.
iii. $40.00 paid directly to Carolyn Parker for Lessons for every lesson after that

B. LESSEE shall NOT have the right to sub-lease the horse. Only LESSEE is granted access to ride the horse. No other riders are allowed to ride the horse unless authorized to do so by LESSOR, which will require that rider sign a waiver of liability form.

C. The terms of this lease is for a “free” riding lease. The LESSEE may only ride Denali in a lesson or with the LESSOR present until it is agreed upon by the TRAINER (Carolyn Parker) and the LESSOR that the LESSEE is able to ride Denali unsupervised. This is in order to make sure there is a good connection between the horse and the LESSOR


LESSEE hereby agrees to keep the horse in good health, giving proper grooming and hoof care before and after riding. LESSEE agrees to properly cool off Denali before putting her back into her stall or her paddock after riding. LESSEE agrees to put on all brushing boots (front and back) and bell boots before Denali enters the arena. The bell boots are on at all times.

LESSEE shall humanely treat and care for the horse. If any injury to the horse occurs under
LESSEE’S care or supervision, LESSEE is responsible for any and all veterinary and/or farrier expenses. Injury or other health related issue with horse should be reported to LESSOR immediately by phone.

Shots, checkups and regular farrier care are the exclusive responsibility of LESSOR.

LEESSE agrees to the following terms of use: no jumping, barrel racing or other extreme equine sport; the use of the horse is strictly for Dressage.

LESSEE further agrees to keep the horse at the current stable location. The horse shall not spend the night away from current stable location, unless prior WRITTEN (via e-mail or letter) consent has been given by LESSOR. LESSEE agrees to follow LESSOR’S advice on how to care and train the horse and LESSEE further agrees to follow all of stable’s posted rules and regulations.


LESSEE hereby agrees to keep any equipment used in good condition including the saddle, bridle and grooming equipment. LESSEE agrees to keep all equipment in its proper location.

If any damage to the equipment occurs under LESSEE’S use beyond normal wear and tear, LESSEE is responsible for any and all cost of replacement.

LESSEE should notify LESSOR of any equipment issues within 24 hours of last use.


Conditions of Liability.
LESSEE agrees that LESSOR is not responsible for total or partial acts, occurrences, or elements of nature that can scare a horse, cause it to fall, or react in some other unsafe way. Some examples are: thunder, lightening, rain, wind, water; wild and domestic animals, insects, and reptiles which may walk, run, fly near, bite, or sting a horse; and irregular footing on outdoor or indoor groomed or wild land which is subject to constant change in condition according to weather, temperature, natural and man-made changes in landscape.

Neither LESSOR or stable or its employees and associates are liable for any accidents, injuries, or thefts to animals and personal property kept at the stable. LESSEE understands that horseback riding carries certain risks and dangers, and that LESSEE will use best judgment to always take safety first into consideration while riding the horse, including always wearing a safety helmet.

By signing below, LESSEE releases LESSOR of all liability in connection with any injury sustained as a result of LESSEE’S activities on the horse. LESSEE also acknowledges that horseback riding is an inherently risky activity and hereby releases LESSOR, and stable, and any other person associated with stable from ANY liability for injury, damage, or loss to LESSEE or LESSEE’S equipment.

LESSEE will NOT be allowed to ride the horse without the use of a helmet. LESSEE
understands that LESSOR is not responsible for any accidents, injuries, damage, or loss to LESSEE or LESSE’S personal property, in conjunction with the horse. Warning: There are
inherent risks of injury that you voluntarily accept in connection with your riding, and other activities (which are not limited to grooming, longing, feeding, bathing, hoof care, etc.) with the horse. LESSEE, as part of this Agreement, agrees to sign the Waiver of Liability attached to this Agreement.
________ (LESSEE initial)


This lease is subject to LESSEE’S performance of the covenants and conditions set forth herein. In the event LESSEE defaults in performance of any such covenants or conditions, and the breach continues for more than 30 days, LESSOR may, at __his/her/their__ option declare the lease forfeit. This lease agreement may be voided with 30 days’ WRITTEN notice from either party for any reason, or may be voided immediately if the LESSOR and/or stable manager deems that the horse's health is put at risk by acts or omissions of LESSEE. If less than 30 days’ notice is given by LESSEE, then payments for the next 30 days will be due notwithstanding. If proper notice of 30 days is given, then any monies paid in advance will be refunded.


LESSOR represents that the horse is in sound health and that there are no known illnesses,
infirmities, or unsoundness. LESSEE understands that Denali was treated for EPM.

THIS LEASE AGREEMENT is entered into in the state of Washington and will be interpreted and enforced under the laws of that state.

_____________________________Date: __________Phone: ______________
Lessor/Owner Signature
Print Name of Lessor

_____________________________Date: __________Phone: ______________
Lessee Signature
Print Name of Lessee

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Vet, Lease Update

Tuesday night was a busy time! I rushed out to the barn in time to see one of the 12 year old 4-Hr's being taken for a walk by Denali. I was running late for my vet appointment so she was trying to help by getting her ready. It was really cute.
"You know your horse is really lazy."
"Really? Why do you say that?"
"I thought she'd freak out a lot more when I got her."

I lunged Denali for the vet who told me that she had "Good News and Bad News."

Good News (and I knew this) Denali looks A LOT better now. We're going to do one more tube of the Marquis and then pray she doesn't relapse.

Bad News, she's lame on her front right. She tore off her shoe a week and a half ago and got a new shoe a week ago, so this is understandable. I'm sure she'll be fine.

The vet is going to come back out to do a sonogram on her right hind. The lump isn't getting better and the vet is afraid it's an infection. She's not off and her x-ray was clean so we'll see how this goes.

Later that night one of the people who responded to my ad came out to meet Denali. I told her all the Denali horror stories and turned Denali out in the arena to play with her treat ball while we chatted. Actually, this was the same girl that came out and tried my friends Mustang last January at the old barn (I'll call it hell from here on out.) Click on the hell link to see pictures of why we left. ANYWAY, I remembered watching her ride and being impressed. My friends Mustang is a lesson horse and he'll only really go if he is made to go. He is lazy, and she did a great job on him. I didn't make her ride Denali.

Long story short, even thought I had 6 other responses I actually talked to, I picked her right away and we'll go from here. I have some "back ups" who might do fine, but they didn't ride and I never heard of their trainers.

She's coming out on Sunday to have a lesson on Denali. I told her I'd pay part of the first four lessons (making it 25$ a lesson) because I still have a training package left with my trainer. She'd be responsible for paying the $40.00 after this.

The mean thing I did? I didn't respond to all e-mails. I hate when people do that to me, BUT I also didn't like when people don't read that ad and respond about their beginner 12 year old kid riding my horse.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


There is one thing when starting this blog that I don't think I've ever shared. I've owned other horses (*gasp*) I've technically owned one and leased (stuck with?) another. I actually owned Ophelia, before I gave her to a friend. I bought her for $80.00. Her "owner" (can I call her that?) was going to take her BACK TO AUCTION because she had horrible feet and wasn't cutting it as a jumper. A friend of mine wanted her (not Ophelia's present mom) but the "owner" wouldn't give her to her. She'd rather taker her back to auction. Bitch. Anyway, I called her and offered her $200.00 (what Ophie was bought for) to buy Ophie as a pasture pal for Denali. Ophie was one of the few horses that Denali liked, and I knew I would only "own" her for a short period of time. Long story short, I couldn't bear to see Ophie taken BACK to the auction. Shortly after buying her, I gave her to another friend. This is who Ophie's mom started leasing her from. When she went up for sale again, my friend had fallen in love and bought her. That's a cinderella story if I ever heard one. Ophie went from living in a dark stall without any human contact (minus the barn owner) to being an amazing little dressage horse who is so loved by her human.

Then there is Maddie. Maddie was a friends horse who lived on one of the islands around Seattle. She had her up for lease and a girl at my barn was looking for a new jumper. I agreed (don't DO THIS EVER) to pick her up and share the lease with the girl. Maddie was a huge TB with four white socks and a beautiful blaze. She was perfect! I went over on the ferry to pick her up. She loaded beautifully and I was excited to get her back to the barn. On the way to the barn I got a phone call that this other girl was thrown out for lying and that she wasn't invited back. I worked at this barn and couldn't get board cheaper anywhere else. So, through a series of events I ended up with Maddie, and Denali.

Maddie and I didn't get along. She hated Denali, and Denali didn't like her, but not with as much hatred as Maddie had for her. She beat the crap out of Denali once and the scar on her back is STILL healing (a year later.) She was a beautiful girl and had amazing bloodlines.

After three weeks, this girl was allowed back at the barn. It was summer and I had time for two horses, but WOW was I worn out. I signed over my half of the lease to this girl (with my friends permission) and no longer "owned" two horses.

The reason that I am writing about this now? I found out that Maddie died. She coliced really bad and died last week in her stall. The girl who owns her and I don't' talk anymore, so I don't know the details, but it makes me really sad.

So to her I say, Rest in Peace Maddie. 1997-2009