Thursday, April 28, 2011


Okay, so not funny because sadly it's true and there are people out there like this.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Summer Pony

I remember reading this book when I was young. I was SO jealous of the girl in the book. I tried to think of a million ways to turn my parent's garage into a stable. One year for Christmas my my dad bought a bunch of straw for his hunting dogs. I was SURE I was getting a horse. I have never wanted something in this life like I wanted a horse. I remember waking up at the crack of dawn running downstairs to see my new horse. When my mom and dad realized why I was bawling on Christmas Day they felt horrible. No pony. Lessons, yes, but never my own horse.

So. Why would I mention Summer Pony? There is a chance. A small chance. A very small chance that I am going to be getting another horse. Not to buy, not even on trial. Just a favor to a friend.  Just for the summer. Difference is he is a large boy, and not quite a pony. I'm not going to go into it because I am 99% sure it won't work out, but that's why I have this blog. I can write whatever I want! I'm slightly excited so I had to write something, or tell someone. I will write more about this story, but first some things need to be taken care of with him. I will bet that I will be able to link to another blog for you to read his story. The trainer at the barn I work at has offered me a stall for all my hard work, so that is taken care of. She's excited for me. Even if this doesn't work out maybe I'll see what I can find. Problem? I'm afraid I'll fall in love. You know I will.

Also. Pop Quiz. Notice anything different about this blog? Anyone? Anyone??

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Notes To Self.

1. Change Smartpak. Do not have them show up the day you run out. That requires waiting for UPS and then an hour drive to the barn.

2. You can't please everyone. It's okay if people hate you. (ROUGH day at work. I won't elaborate.)

3. Remind your blog followers how much you love them! I got my picture in the mail yesterday! I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it!! Thank you so much. Opening the package went something like this

  • Pick up package - Smile
  • Open package - Smile while crying
  • Look at picture - bawling
  • Open Card - Laugh and then cry.

I love you all!! I was SHOCKED at the number of people who donated. My husband said he feels bad that you all donated and then Denali still lived. I do too, well I don't feel bad that Denali is still alive, but that you donated your hard earned money. Thank you again!! It's going to get framed this weekend (well a frame ordered for it!)

Thank you: Andrea, Jennifer, Meghann, Aimee, Beth, Rebecca, Carie, Cheryl, Shannon, Lacey, Kristen, Ashley, Heather, and Jennifer!!!  I know MOST of your blogs, and those I don't I think I know.... I wonder who's "Blogger Name" goes with who. Regardless, Thank you so much!! I am going to get a little frame for the card. It is so awesome. I will need to remember to post pictures.

Drove Denali's supplements out to her tonight and helped at the barn for about two hours. My job? Bring in and feed the TB mare. Um....that would be Denali. I'm getting paid to take care of my own horse. My vet is too nice.  She was a good girl and I used my new magical powers to make her listen and it was the first time I handled her since our bucking incident that I felt in charge. It was a good feeling. I love her. She has hives again. We think it's something in the arena since she slept in that last night. She's in her stall tonight to see if it changes.

OMG!! I need to take a picture of the little tiny pony that is at the barn now! CUTEST THING EVER!! He was the vet's surgery pony in med school (and her reason for creating the center.) Usually they do a bazillion things to the ponies and then put them down. She didn't. She saved hers and nursed him back to health. I could stand over him and my butt would come no where near his back. I'm IN LOVE!!! The center is a place where med students come to learn how to do things so that the ponies don't need to have needless surgeries to teach. Med students get real world experience and I love this vet for it!!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Life is funny.

I find life hilarious.

Example A: For some reason tonight I am severely allergic to SOMETHING in my living room. We don't know what, but if I'm in the room I can not stop sneezing. I gave up and have relocated myself to the bedroom. Boring.

Example B: My knee. I went to the doctor today, and apparently I was diagnosed with some disorder of some part of my knee (patella?) a year ago, but I never listened. Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (I think.) My right hip has no muscles in it because my right knee isn't working right. My right ankle needs a bone removed and it's just a waiting game of how long until the tendon that is stretched across the bone will hold up. I am lucky enough to have an extra bone in my ankle that is putting pressure on a tendon. The older I get the weaker the tendon. Oh the joys of being....30. Dear God, what is going to happen when I'm 40?

The plan for now is to do Physical Therapy. No riding for now, or doing anything that will put pressure on my leg. That means cleaning too right?? Apparently whatever is wrong with me is a common problem for women. The muscles on the outside of my leg are much stronger than the inside. The inside muscles get weaker and my outside (don't you love my anatomy explanation) pull my knee cap doesn't track right. When I run, this happens a lot in a short period of time and every thing swells up. And that is my medical explanation. I also need to build up my hip muscles and get my ankle done.

Funny thing is that if I would have just kept riding my muscles would have been "normal." So before I ride, I need to get those muscles built back up. Ha! Who am I going to ride?

Life is funny.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

The ankle bone is connected....

to the knee bone...the knee is connected to the hip bone....

and they are all broken.

Well. Not broken, but something popped in my knee and I can't walk. Which is AWESOME. Well. That's a lie. I can walk, but it feels like razor blades in my knee. My ankle needs fixed and I was suppose to have surgery last fall, which I put off. So now I wonder if that stress of walking funny is what caused the knee to decide it was done. In addition my hip hurts like hell. Positive? All on the same leg.

Oh the joy! Maybe that's why Denali came into my life. God knew I'd always be broken and couldn't ride anyway.

I actually have been doing a lot of reading about arthritis in horses necks. It's obviously very serious, and usually spells the end of the horses riding career. Some of it seemed to make a lot of sense to Denali. If she did indeed hurt her neck 2 years ago, why did it show up in September? One thing I read was that if the horse can have muscles built up in their neck that helps to support the neck, and the signs are less. I wonder if that would work for Ms. D. Still waiting for the suspensory to finish healing (someday! geez) but then I am going to try to build those neck muscles up to see if it helps. Suggestions on exercises that I can do w/o being on her back? Ground driving, but other things?

I hope you all had a wonderful Easter!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

How's Your Horse?

For most of my "real world friends" they do not know that this blog exists. I can thing of two, maybe three of them that know that I have a blog. This is for a variety of reasons. One is that I can be totally honest here. I can vent, and write down how I'm really feeling without feeling judged. Sometimes I mention it, but quickly realize that I'm not ready to have them read my feelings. Plus I can bitch and complain about them when they are assholes. Ophie's mom knows I have this blog, and her boyfriend. I don't care if they know that my horse terrifies me on a regular basis. That most horses now terrify me on a regular basis. It's funny how your mind works.

So, since my "real world friends (horse and non-horse)" don't know about this blog I often get e-mails and messages asking me, "How's Your Horse?" A nice, simple question that I still have a hard time answering.

Some of my responses:

"There are days that I don't think she's going to live to the next day, and days I think I'm going to be the one to kill her. "

"For  horse, she's totally busted, but for Denali she's doing awesome."

"Interesting." (Which is usually my response when I am too tired, and don't have two hours to explain how Denali's doing.)



I have such a hard time answering this question. She is a complicated horse, and I know they are just asking to be nice and 9 times out of 10 probably don't really care.

I think the most important answer is "Alive."

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Never A Dull Moment...

Today was Denali's Spa day. It's only been 8 months, but princess has developed some nice points on her teeth and they needed to be fixed before she got the ulcers that we both loved so much. (She gets ulcers, I get ulcers....oh fun.)

My poor brother is in town and I made him get up early to come with me. About half way to the barn he asked me if he needed his Passport. Okay, it's far but not that far.

Denali was in the arena when we got there and one of the Vet's interns went into the arena to get her. Ms. Mare showed her best manners.

She pinned her ears, squinted her eyes, and took off running (a bit neurological at I was embarrassed of her poor social skills (because I of course take it to heart) so I opened up the arena and stepped in. Denali saw me, stopped dead and came running over to me good as gold. I just don't think she likes the tech. She is always anti social around her.

The float was normal. Denali needed double sedation. The vet is so calm and patient with her. I am always impressed. Denali's front teeth needed a little bit of work, but nothing bad. During the float I looked over and saw one of Denali's best friends laying down in her stall. I had never seen her resting like that, so I took a picture.

After taking the picture, I noticed that she was looking at her belly. Uh oh! The vet was finishing Denali's float and as soon as she took off her ear protectors I pointed out Sunny to her. I got a halter on her and we took her blanket off. Her belly was so bloated (you can see it in the picture.) She's a cribber, and already had colic surgery as a 2 year old. Poor thing. The vet gave her banamine, but she kept sticking her leg out towards me, like "help!" I felt so bad.

Denali was starting to come out of her sedation and noticed that her BF was laying down (aka out of her sight.) Denali decided to go all herd-bound mare on us and started to scream. She first started to do low nickers, and when Sunny didn't answer she lost her mind.

(Caution: Blood)

The vet tubed Sunny, and we helped mix up the stuff that got put into her belly. I like learning, but not under these circumstances. The poor girl. She got a bloody nose, but other than that it went well. She started to fart and the intern started to hand walk her. I guess she's doing better. I'll be happy when I can go back out and give her a hug

When Sunny was out walking around Denali decided to lose her mind. She kept screaming, and screaming. She hates being in a stall if other horses are going and coming. One of the caretakers joked with me about me wanting to take her out. I have new magical powers, so I figured I could do it. I love my horse. She was crawling the walls, but as soon as I opened the door she stopped and stood perfectly still while I put her blankets and halter on. It sort of reminded me of a 2 year old temper tantrum. As soon as she got what she wanted she stopped.

She was a good girl. She tried to lead me out to the field, and I worked on keeping her behind me. It was much easier when she was totally calm to practice, but I tried anyway. I laughed the whole way. Once we got to the pasture and I took her halter off she just stood with me. She didn't go running off with her friends. She stood by me until I told her it was okay, that she could go. She took off like a bat out of hell. Love my mare. Love her and all her broken parts.

Didn't get a real chance to talk to the vet about all my questions since Sunny was sick. We are going to try Devil's Claw again. We're going to start her out with just a little bit and then see if there is a change. 

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Elbow Grease

I'm off this week from work. I'm such a happier person when I can sleep into 8 am and get my errands run before noon. I could be a stay at home wife. Wake up, drink coffee, go ride my horses, and come home in time to make dinner for my husband.

Oh that reminds me. Honey, can you win the lotto?

Today I wanted to run out to Denali's barn and help since my brother will be in town this week and I want to make sure I pull my weight. I cleaned a few stalls and the pastures. I like feeling helpful. I found out that Denali tried to off the vet this morning during their Tuesday moning staff meeting. She was checking out Denali's scratches and Denali 'forgot' she was there and tried to kick at a horse (keeping in mind that the vet was there.) I think if Denali ever got the vet I'd kill her. The vet had a discussion with her and then Denali was a good girl. The employees were impressed that Denali didn't over react.

Ms. Slew
 After working at the barn I went to the "Giant Warmblood Barn" to clean up Pete. He smelled so bad on Sunday that I decided that the next sunny day I was going to give him a bath. Today it was sunny, and slightly warm so I decided to give it a go.

1 hour, 1/2 a bottle of shampoo, 4 tail washings, and 2 body scrubbings and he was somewhat clean. He reminds me of an old man who doesn't get out much. I took him out to hand graze him when we were done so he could dry. He was SO naughty, lol. I was so mad at him. Keep in mind that I am 6ft tall and  can not see over his withers. He's huge!! He was grazing and then decided that bucking and rearing was an acceptable behavior. I was so mad at him. I let him dry out a bit more in his stall and then took him out to the arena to run around. He looks sound, which is great. I feel so bad that his owner hasn't been out since October to see him. I figured that I could pay some attention to him so he doesn't get totally bored.

This is the wash rack after washing him. Keep in mind that I groomed him before I washed him.

The clean man. His face isn't great and he didn't want it washed with the sponge so I did the best that I could.

And without further Ado. The Lusitano baby. He is by Rubi Alter Real and is the only son in the United States. I am in love with him. He is so sweet, so cute, and is going to be an amazing horse. Go ahead, drool. His mom is such a nice lady. I'm not going to put his name here since I don't want her to google him and come across my crazy blog that discusses my obsession with her horse. This MIGHT be one of his sale videos. I won't say that it is...that would make me creepy.  ;0) Cute isn't he!

Have I mentioned that I LOVE my job?

Monday, April 18, 2011

Sit down

Are you sitting down?

No, seriously....sit down.

I'll give you another second.....

Ready for this one??

I had fun with Denali.

Not only did I have fun. I had a lot of fun.

We had our 2 hour introduction to Parelli today. I must say, when he got out the stick and long rope I was a bit sceptical. I know that's part of it, but still. I told him of my experiences of Denali and he did a quick evaluation of her. My heart sank when he commented that he could tell she was in pain. My head started running with thoughts of where her pain is, how bad it is, how can he tell, what should I do, should I cancel, should I put her down. I surprisingly got myself under control quickly and focused on the lesson. She looked uncomfortable, but not as horrible as I've seen her.

Denali did great, by the end she was so focused and relaxed. I really enjoyed our lesson. Parelli is something that I could see working for us. It made sense for me, it made sense for her. After our lesson I gave her some bute in her dinner. Before our instructor got there she was trying to scratch her butt, and after she scrached it she stared shaking and shaking her neck. Poor girl. Sometimes I wonder how much it bothers her. Her heart rate is normal, temp normal. I guess I'll ask the Vet Thursday her thoughts. I don't want her to be in a ton of pain, but selfishly I don't want to lose her either. She seems so happy. I know I'm over-reacting. I still get sad that she's so broken.

Off to buy a magic stick. ;0) (no, seriously.)

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Weekend Update

My friend left this morning at 4am. I drove her and her husband to the airport and then rolled my car windows down, turned the music up and sang every bad 80's song on the radio on my way home. Then I went back to bed and slept for another 6 hours. Yikes. I do love sleep almost as much as I love obsessing over my horse (although I don't technically love obsessing...)

I got an e-mail from Smartpak the other day offering 50% off of Cosequin for the first two months if you add it to your smartpak. I've been thinking of trying this for some time, and my vet suggested Cosequin ASU, so I figured now was the time if I was going to make the switch. I dropped my SmartFlex Repair and added this. It makes me a bit nervous (I hate change, have your figured this out?) I liked the SmartFlex Repair because of the Silica. A friend of mine suggested Silicon instead of Silica (I forget the name right now) through Platinum Performance. Do you have any suggestions for tendon/ligament health?  This won't come until her May 19th Smartpak, so that gives her another month of the SmartFlex Repair. If I don't see a difference we'll go back. I also took her off of her Vitamin E. She gets Smart Protect which has 3,000 IU's and her SmartVit Performance has 1,500. Plus she has Cocosoya oil which has .... well, I don't know exactly, but I'm pretty sure it's in there. I was only giving her 1/2 a dose of Vit E anyway. If I see any changes I will put her back on it, but I think she's getting enough. I wish that every thing that I wanted for her came in a SmartPak. I LOVE them!

Enough about supplements. I could make a whole blog dedicated to JUST that. I went to work today and continue to fall in love with the Lusitano baby. He is adorable and so funny. He knows I'm the food lady, and that makes me his favorite person ever (other than his mom.) He makes me laugh the entire time I'm there. He tries everything in his power to convince me to come see him. I need to take a video of him. He's adorable! Today I also ran out after shift one to help at the Center where Denali is. It's funny, I am not doing anything different than I normally do, but I feel better. I cleaned up the one field and brought Denali in for her dinner. she's such a good girl. I can't wait for the ground to dry out a bit. Her feet have a few stone bruises on them. They look great, but need to harden up a bit more. That isn't going to happen until the ground dries out a bit. She also has scratches on her legs. Awesome. I'm going to buy some MTG and try that.  I'm sure the people who work there think I'm a moron. I'm fine, fine, fine, freak out. In my defense, I only have mini-melt downs in enclosed places with the mare. That's an improvement right?

As for tomorrow. I have another lesson. This is with a Parelli Level 2 person (ask me what that means... I have no idea.) He was recommended to my by a few people and I went to see him in January. He's moving to CA in a few weeks so it was now or never. Our lesson is two hours long, so we'll see what I get out of it. I told the girl I worked with tonight she may be scraping my body off the arena walls. I told Denali too. She looked thrilled. (Okay. Not really.) Wish me luck. This could be interesting. Her vet appointment was changed to Thursday morning.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Oh Denali...

I think my horse knows that I have a hard time making decisions, so she makes them for me. Friday she made the decision that we're going to stay where we are for now. I went out with one of my best friends from high school who flew in to visit me. Denali was still in her stall, and was next up on the list for her body work appointment. I went in and cleaned off her legs as best as I could, and Denali being visited by my friends. All was right in the world. Then she noticed that other horses were getting as much attention as she was. Not okay with her and she started to be naughty. Not horrible, but moving around the stall. Not the end of the world. I still am having issues with being in a small enclosed place with her. We're both clausterphoic, so we're not a good pair. I got really nervous and walked out of her stall. I'm anxious, she's anxious (you see the horrible pattern right?)

I went to see when Denali was going to be worked and went back to her stall to get her. I opened her stall door and the silly girl reared up on me. It scared the shit out of me and I slammed the door. (Flash backs to post Denmark/November almost dying.) It wasn't to "get me" but more-so, "I'm so done with this stall, I wantz out." I started to get upset and went to tell the girl who was going to work her that she was in her stall and I just couldn't do it. I was so upset with myself. It's hard to convince yourself that you won't die. I decided to put my big girl pants on and try to do it again. No problems. I think Denali knew. I put her halter on her, and she stood perfectly still until I was out of the stall and then asked her to follow me. She was a peach. Poor thing. It's not her, it's me. I do know that I'm not ready to take her to a new environment. I need to feel confident handling her all the time before we can do that. I'm fine, I'm fine, I'm fine...she freaks once and it terrifies me to no end. I know she'll be a freak when I take her to a new barn (because she always is) so I still need to feel better.

When we went to do her body work she was a bit of a pill. We trotted her out a few times and she started out looking really well (because she was totally wild and was doing big huge trots, big huge, beautiful floating trots....drool) but when asked to slow it down she was obviously still really lame but no where as bad as last week. We have a vet appointment on Thursday (changed from Monday, more on why tomorrow) so I'm going to ask about an x-ray to make sure the splint bone isn't broken. She's going to think I'm a nutcase!

The vet and I talked today. I love her. She loves my horse, all is right in the world. She reiterated that I don't need to work at the barn and she doesn't mind. I just feel so guilty that I would feel better if I would be able to work for her and also keep Denali there (at least for the summer.) I wouldn't have my own "shift" but I would go out and help whoever is already working (since they get paid and I'm just a "volunteer.") I think it's a good thing for us, for now.

Oh, I found out she's only drinking a little bit of water at night. There's no way to judge how much she drinks during the day. Do you use electrolytes? She only drank about half a bucket at night time (10 hours in stall) and the care taker said she always does that. She use to drink more water than that at our old barn. Suggestions? She might be gulping a ton during the day, and her grain is really a grass mash with 6 cups water at night and morning. Just something else for me to be neurotic over.What would I do if she was perfectly healthy, sound, and sane? (What would she do if I was perfectly healthy, sound, and sane?)

Friday, April 15, 2011

Barn 4 (aka-Vet Barn)

So I don't think that techniqually it counts as barn 4 since we already live there, but since it is now an option I can add it to the mix. I had sent the vet an e-mail telling her about the first place I looked at and my concerns over the glass-legged mare. I told her I didn't want to leave, but that I felt horribly guilty at the deep discount she gives me, and it's not fair to her for me to assume that I can stay. I offered to work for her doing "whatever" to aleviate some of the guilt.

I got an e-mail from her offering to "hire" me to work off the board (I'd still pay what I'm paying) but would work at the barn for X number of hours so that I would work off the rest of the board. If that makes sense. We still need to sit down and go over it, but I'm excited that we might be able to stay longer term. I've already made appointments to go look at barns, and I might still do that in case for some reason I can't work enough for the vet.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Dear Mom,

Dear Mom,

I love you, but if you could PLEASE stop telling me to give Denali to a rescue that would make me feel a lot better. I'm not getting rid of her. Ever. Finding me rescues and giving me their names doesn't help. You're wrong. She wouldn't be happier somewhere else.



Barn 3?

I haven't gone to see barn 2 yet. This weekend. Maybe.

A few weeks ago I called a barn that is 20 miles from my house. It doesn't have an indoor arena, but has great recommendations. It is $500.00 a month (which happens when you get closer to the city.) I know they have a waiting list, so I figured I'd try to get on it. Today she called me back to tell me that the barn has a long wait list for mares. Figures. Then she asked me about Denali. I had told her a little bit in my e-mail about our lack of riding ability and her other problems. Apparently she has a few stalls at her house with a large pasture and she's looking for a mare to keep her sister's mare company. It's not finished yet, butI'm going to go look at it in a week or so. It's not exactly what I want, and would prefer a barn environment where I can see other people (I like being social) but it might be a good back up plan if barn 2 doesn't work out. Not sure of a price yet. I hate barn hunting. Denali's issues make finding a barn difficult. (Large turn out, grass to eat so she works her neck, someone who can handle her moments of stupidity.)

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Barn 2

So I asked a trimmer friend of mine if she knew of any barns that I could take Denali. She sent me the contact info for a barn that is 29 miles from my house, and offers all day turn out (10-12 hours) on pastures. The woman is looking for someone to work for her and pays $1.00 per horse turn in and turn out. Totally easy for me to do. The price is already reasonable ($425.00 per month) so if I can get it below $400 a month that would be great. The pictures are great and it sounds too good to be true. I have never heard of this place and wonder if the owner is crazy. I called her today and it sounds great. It's not a training or lesson barn, which is good since a lot of barns around here only want boarders who are going to spend more money on lessons. I'm going to see it this weekend. We'll see. She said I can bring my own trainer in, but they can not give other lessons out of the barn (aka only boarders.) I liked everything she said. I know they only give so much hay, and if your horse needs more you pay extra. Nothing works out for us, so I'm not getting my hopes up too much.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Devil's Claw = The Devil

Know how to get me to break laws? Send me a text that says, "Denali is acting funny." I'm pretty sure I made it 43 miles in less than 40 minutes. Denali was acting weird yesterday too. Really grumpy and agitated. I was convinced she had a brain tumor yesterday. (Because I'm neurotic like that.) The care taker text me to tell me that she was "off" and was really hot. She said she checked her out and that she'd be okay, but even at 7:30 at night I had to go see her for myself. I started her on Devil's Claw last Wednesday, and my friend had warned me that it could irritate a sensitive horse. I own the most sensitive horse in the world, what was I thinking.

I got to the barn and everything was turned off (it was 8:15 at that point.) Found the lights and groomed Denali and checked her out. She seemed calmer than yesterday when I groomed her, but slightly jumpy. Water was drank (probably 1/2 a bucket in 2 hours) and her mush was gone. Lots of poop, so not too nervous about colic. Still a little nervous. It's me, how can't I be. As much money as she costs me I will be devastated if something happens to her.

After grooming her and getting the mud off her legs, I decided to try to teach her some tricks. "Touch your belly." She sort of got it after 5 minutes, so I don't think teaching her tricks will be hard. She just wants the treat and does a million different things to try to get it. I didn't want to give her too many since she's acting a little funny. I think it's just the Devil's Claw. If she's still wonky in a week I'll freak out.

I felt horrible when I was leaving. Denali HATES, HATES, HATES her neighbor. He's an ex Hackney Stallion (now gelding if you didn't get that) and he just freaks her out. She didn't want to come in tonight, and I think it's because she hates him. When I turned the lights off he slammed himself into the wall screaming. I ran to see if it was Denali or him. She was a wreck, panting and pacing. I stood and talked to her and told her he was an idiot, but I still feel bad for not staying longer. I couldn't get the lights to come back on and it was pitch black and a little too quiet for my liking. I hope she's okay.

I've been looking at barns. I contacted Melissa at Paradigm Farms to look at options. Tonight, when I found out that Denali didn't feel well it reminded me why I want her close. I know they would take the best of care of her (which is why I contacted them, I think they are awesome) but for now I need her close. Another barn actually contacted me to see if I'd be interested in working there in exchange for reduced board. I'm going to go look at it at some point... I'm not vaccinating Denali right now and they require proof of vaccines. The shots just throw her for such a loop, and I don't think her body is up to fighting that right now. My vet agrees with me. (BTW: I love my vet.) 

Thanks for your kind words. I actually had a lengthy conversation with the "Big Guy" on my way out to the barn. I am sure people driving past me thought I was nuts, but I figured I'd put it out there. When I was a little kid I always wondered if God could hear our thoughts or if we had to actually say them for him to "get the message."

Sunday, April 10, 2011

No go.

I just want out of horses. I told my husband that I don't ever want to own another again. I got back into horses the totally wrong way, I took "lessons" in a shotty barn. I say "lessons" because I was often left on the horse by myself while the "trainer" did other things.  I bought a horse that wasn't matched to me in a way that was totally wrong. Every decision that I've made involving horses has been wrong. I have no desire to ride, I find my love and obsession going away. That makes me sad, but maybe I need to walk away. I can't walk away from Denali (nor would I ever do that.) I'm committed to her, and it wasn't her choice to come home with me. Nothing has gone right. I have used my heart every time and it's always been wrong. I know it could always be worse. Sorry, guys, I'm just so sad about the whole situation.

Denali is not going to live at that barn. I pictured 50 ways for her to kill herself in the first 10 minutes. It's beautiful, and if she didn't have glass legs I'd be all about it. There are a lot of rocks, and trees. The girl who owns it is so nice. She told me that she's not a boarding barn, and she isn't looking for boarders. That if I change my mind (after them living there for a few months and getting things picked up) Denali is welcome any time. There really isn't anywhere for me to do anything with her, not that I can.

I'm having a hard time using the words "retired" and "Denali" in the same sentence. That brings such a sadness over me it's hard to describe. It make me sad for her, sad for me, and sad for my husband and me. I don't know if I'm ready to say that yet. Today was just a really hard day. You don't need to give me any positive comments, I don't deserve them. I know you all care, I am just worn out.

(And again. People suggest I put Denali down. I can't put her down. She's happy, she's "healthy" and that's not fair to her. I'll live in my car first.)

Friday, April 8, 2011

I'm so excited.

The more I talk to this girl, the more excited I get. Best part is that she isn't a total stranger, so no need to worry about her going crazy on me (I should label this so I can come back when I am wrong, I don't think I'm going to be wrong.) Denali would live with 3 or 4 other horses, but no more than 5 total on the property. I know there's a pasture (duh) but I don't think there are trails or anything. That's fine. I just need to hang out with Denali.

It's the perfect price, at ALMOST the perfect location. She'll feed her, change her blankets (another worry of mine) and keep an eye on her. Her horse's personalities sound like they will compliment Denali's very well. I am going out on Sunday! More updates on that to come. I still need to check with the vet about taking Denali. I'm sure she'll be happy! $300.00 for full care pasture board (feeding supplements/changing blankets) is such a good deal for this area.

Fingers crossed! (I am surprised that I can cross any of my fingers anymore, they are crossed all the time.)


A friend of mine posted on Facebook that she was so excited about their new house. I know that they have two horses, so I joked that she should take Denali on as a boarder to bring up the property value. She's actually interested in having Nawlers live there so that when she takes one horse out, the other one will have company. It's only 24 miles from my house! (Still at least an hour in traffic, but can't complain.) They don't move in until the end of May which could be perfect. Still haven't discussed price or if she'd be able to give Denali her supplements. Lots of questions, especially about the temperament of her horses... Still a little excited. It's 4 acres.

Update: $300 a month for hay/grain/probiotics and a monthly parisite check. I'm so excited!!! I hope this works out because I could afford board AND vet bills at this rate. (By afford meaning we actually put something into savings....)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Part 2

The tale doesn't get much more exciting, I just ran out of time earlier... Oh, how about the best part of the appointment was when Denali kicked herself and cut her leg. Really? Really mare? You're just putting salt on the wound now.

Where did I leave off...oh, selling Denali. To who? It's not like I can ask Bill Gates to buy her? I'd love to find someone looking for a pasture puff, but not because I  don't love her, but because I do love her. If I could find someone who had $$ and was willing to put the work into her then I might consider it. She's the love of my life, but I get so afraid she'll need something that I just can't afford. I get terrified of what's going to happen when my husband finishes Grad school. I don't know where we're going to end up and I get worried about the vet care we might have available (or not available.)

So again, back at taking it a day at a time. I think we're getting pretty good at it.  My husband I talked about looking for retirement board, but he pointed out that 'cheap' retirement board is at least an hour away and he doesn't want to deal with me boo-hooing about not seeing my pony. I'm still hoping that I can find something cheaper since we don't really need an arena and while he smiles and doesn't say much I do feel really guilty about spending so much money on Denali.

I'm trying to think positive. The vet did say there was a chance. Well, before she didn't even have a chance and she pulled through. Nothing makes your heart sink more than watching your horse run with a horrible limp, and then watch her buckle when her neck is pressed on. I wish I would have never went to Denmark, then she would have had turn out and then maybe NOT gone through that fence. I know, I have so much to be grateful for, but I still get down. I'm not planning on taking lessons other than groundwork. I think it would just break my heart knowing that I don't have a horse of my own to practice on. I've had all my riding gear stacked on my saddle rack in my living room. Tonight I decided the best course of action was to sit, stare at it, and cry. I'm so responsible and know how to solve a problem. My poor husband picked up my dressage whip and I cried some more. Not sure why I'm crying. It's a great coping mechanism.

A friend of mine sent me some good thoughts and I of course drive my vet totally insane with them. She'll probably be glad to get rid of us.

 Onto The Lesson.

The lesson went fabulously. It was so awesome and she was so patient with me (Barb). I loved her and I loved the work that we did. She gave me some good things to work on, and help me to communicate with Denali. We worked on backing and leading. I am always amazed at what a quick learner Denali is. I might buy these books. Watch out Lukas, you might have some competition. ;0)

Part 1 (Vet Appointment)

Whew. Still have that pit in my stomach.

I hate vet appointments. I don't remember the last time we had a good you? Denali was in the field when I got there, and came barreling up to the gate. The silly girl managed to break the back strap on her blanket and her blanket was all kinds of crazy.

The vet and I decided we'd talk about "options" once we worked Denali in the round pen. The last time she was "ok" and was a 1/2 out of 5 on the lameness scale and pretty much worked out of it. Yesterday, yesterday she was an obvious 3/5. She did work out of it a bit, but going to the left. Ouch. Going to the right she looked pretty good, it's that left hind that is still a mess. The vet said if we sonogram it, that we would probably still see a lesion on it. Damn it. I don't have the $ to sonogram it at the moment.

Here is the downfall. The best chance for that syspensory to heal is to put her on stall rest. Problem? She can't go on stall rest because of her neck. It would end up killing her one way or another. At this point it's just a matter of which is going to quit on her first, her neck or her leg.

Positive? I'm selling my saddles and don't need to worry about saving that money for another saddle. I own a pasture pet. I did sell a saddle so when I get that money we will talk about doing a sonogram on that leg. It doesn't really matter since I'm not willing to put her on stall rest. I also told the vet that I have a gut feeling that something is going on up near her ears. There is a lump there, and Denali has been twiddling her ears a lot, and if she has a halter on it's continual. It's a bad gut feeling.

We scrubbed her scratches, and then the vet did chiro on Denali. She was so out. We did confirm that it is her C5/C/6 that has the arthritis. How do we determine that? The vet pressed there and Denali all but dropped to the ground. Sigh. While the vet was doing Chiro Denali tried to pull out an old trick. Biting. The girl who was handling her yelled at her, but didn't reprimand her any other way.  After the third bit attempt I took her from the girl. I was so mad/embarrassed. Yes Mare, it hurts, but you DO NOT BITE! I told the girl I knew she wasn't afraid of her, but that I also know it's weird to be holding someone elses horse and to discipline them in front of the owner.

There is still a small chance that at some point she might be ridable. The problem is that it is going to be a long/expensive road to get her there and I just can't afford it. There is no way. If we lived somewhere else where board wasn't so expensive maybe. For now we are going to try to determine if that suspensory is healing or if it is deteriorating. How do you do that? You work her. She is going to get worked five days a week at the walk/trot in the round pen. I unfortunately can't get out there 5 days a week so I need to hire someone to do it. She only is going to charge $10.00 an hour (she works for the vet and is doing it for so little for me), but that is still going to add up fast. I might break out the Rehab Denali blog and put stuff on there to sell. We don't need it right?

I picked up some Devil's Claw Plus to see if adding that will help with some of the inflammation that she has in her legs/neck. We'll see. Fingers crossed.

Lots of things to think about. I can pull her off of half her supplements since she's not ridable, but I'm afraid that they help and I don't want to have her in pain. I won't put her down. She's happy, and I know that in the past people have suggested that. When she's in pain we will put that back on the table.

1. Continue Rehab - problem? - $$$$$$
2. Retirement board - problem? - There is no cheap (aka less than $400) retirement board in the Seattle area. At that price, I will just board her so she's at least close to me.

At this point we are going to work her for the next two weeks and see what happens.

The vet asked about selling her. To who? Who in their right mind would want to take her on? More on that in Part 2 (coming soon to a blog near you.)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


I'm back. I will write more when I finish processing everything. Thanks for the nice messages. The lesson went well. Unfortunately the vet appointment did not go so well. :( More later. Long day and I'm exhausted.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Tomorrow's the day.

We have our vet appointment and then right after our lesson with Barb Apple.

I'm excited/nervous. I am afraid the vet will tell me Denali's not getting much better, I'm afraid she'll tell me she's "good to go" and we'll then have to find a barn. I'm afraid that during her tests she'll fall. I can't put her into training in good faith if she's going to trip and fall consistently. That's unsafe for everyone. Horses trip sometimes, but they catch themselves. I don't know if Denali can catch herself. I am worried to ask about going to training. I'm worried about everything.

Don't even get me started on the lesson. My heart has been in my throat for two days. I'll post an update when I get home tomorrow! Wish us luck!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Thank you.

I love you. I love you all.

I forgot about this until a few days ago. Back in November (horrible, horrible November) Andrea at Eventing-A-Gogo collected donations to make me a gift since I was losing Denali. It was a horrible, horrible time in my life, but honestly knowing that you were all thinking about me helped me to get out of bed. Those of you who had been down this horrible road offered me your advice, your sympathy, your insight. Denali and I got cards in the mail (which I still have saved), we got e-mails, we felt the love. You helped me feel ready for my baby to leave this earth. By some luck of God, Denali was spared. I still think it had to be divine intervention. It was just so close and if it wasn't for the snow.... well you know what was going to happen.

Andrea sent me a copy of the drawing. It is the most beautiful thing I've ever seen and I proceeded to sit at my computer and bawl. I love it. My husband is already figuring out where it's going to go on the wall (next to our black and white photo of Mt. McKinley.) It's by Sandy Rabinowitz, who does the illustrations for Dressage Today. I love it. I love it. I love it!!! The photo was taken by Ophie's mom and it was a beautiful photo, I'm just so impressed with the drawing. It looks just like her.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!! I don't know who donated, but I will forever remember this act of kindness and hope to pay it forward someday!

Lesson Wednesday.

I got an e-mail this morning with a phone number to call to schedule my lesson. I'm having a lesson with Barb Apple on Wednesday, and had to call her today. I am so nervous. I haven't asked Denali to do anything other than to eat cookies for a LONG time. I just told her that we are a "hot mess" and that there is a high likely hood that I will cry. She was so nice. I'm just so excited and so nervous. I know that we can't move forward by doing nothing, but doing nothing has been stress free.

In addition I'm going to make an appointment with the vet. I know I could just ask her a million questions when I see her, but I want to pay her so I don't feel guilty for taking her time. I need to ask her what her thoughts on Denali going to training. We're going to look at her suspensory and see how that has been healing. It will be one year at the end of the month, but we think she strained it in November. I didn't have the money to sonogram it, and it didn't swell up. I want to talk about Adequan and the possibility of giving that to her. She just seems so stiff. I'm afraid of giving it to her and not having any progress with her neck. The next step (if Adequan doesn't work) is to put her under and inject the joint. I can't afford that. I also get nervous about needles near her spine. I need to keep reminding myself we're doing what's best for her, not what's best for me. If I can't ride her, I can't ride her. As long as she's happy and pain free that's all I care about.

Sunday, April 3, 2011


If you haven't figured it out by now I'm a bit overprotective of Denali. I never thought about her being protective of me. Yesterday and today I got a little glimpse of the horse I think she wants to be.

Yesterday I was brushing out her gross, gross tail while she was eating hay with her boyfriend. He seems like a nice horse, and there is no "warning" on his stall so I just stood there brushing her tail and talking to her. I had him behind me, but he was eating and it is HONESTLY his favorite thing to do. I didn't think anything of him. She did this weird spook thing and ran in front of me ( putting her between me and Cody.) I was mad at her for being a butt and gave her a half hearted smack on the butt. That's when I noticed that Cody had his ears pinned to his head and was giving me the snake look. She kept glaring at him, but he wasn't aloud to go near me. Good Mare.

I ran out today to check out her hives (did I mention mare-face has hives all over her face?) and they were in the arena together again. She saw me pull up and turned her nickers on high. I love this horse more than anyone can understand. I could do without the anxiety attacks I get when I think of trailering her or riding her.... but regardless, Love her!!

I rubbed her face, which at first she was not happy about then realized that it felt good. Poor thing looks like a chipmunk. I put some benedryl on her door that they can give her if she's still bad tomorrow. Mr. Cody was standing back eating hay and watching us. I ignored him (really he's fat, but I can take him ;0) he started to come up to us and Denali got this look of "I'm scared, but don't want to leave you." The next part was so weird, I told her I'd be fine, to run away from him ( I don't want her to get hurt! I have insurance that will pay for me.)  No sooner were the words out of my mouth then she did a nice roll back (although, obviously stiff) and took off running, but watching me the entire time. He took another step towards me, and she came tearing back down the arena towards us, pissed him off and he took off chasing her and I quickly got out of the arena.

She's in heat, and I swear she gets very momma like when she's in heat. We'll see if protective Denali stays around.

I LOVE this mare. I can't wait to put this all behind us, and just have a good relationship. I think she wants to work with me, I just don't fully get her and still have some fear issues (bucking and trampling do that I think...) I'm starting to trust her again, and I think once I can do that the riding will be easy. Hell, I'm just so glad she's alive. I don't care if I can't ride her. I'm going to turn her into a trick horse. (Plan B)

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Lucky Me.

That title can be taken both literally and sarcastically. Read on.

I had one of those weeks that I had to drag myself out of bed in order to go to work. I rarely "dislike" work and usually look forward to the kids. This week was the perfect storm of a million things coming together.

Monday morning I woke up, felt fine and jumped out of bed. I quickly realized as I grabbed the bed to keep from eating the floor that my hip wasn't all. I have no idea what in the hell happened, but I couldn't put pressure on it and I couldn't walk. I hobbled everywhere and debated taking off the day. I ended up sitting in my chair at work and my student teacher did the "leg work." I went to bed Monday night and work up Tuesday and it was fine. Totally fine. Totally weird.

Tuesday I kept taking deep breaths from killing my extra substitute assistant. He was eating all of my snacks (which are for the kids) and was ALWAYS on his phone. I secretly started wishing that one of my kids would rip it out of his hands and throw it across the room. That would be easier to explain than if I did it. I ran out to see Nawlers and...well I blogged about that didn't I...

Wednesday I had a "discussion" with the cell phone using, food eating IA and he no longer worked in my classroom. Win for me.

Thursday my hip started trying to kill me at 10 am. After work I had to run to drop off my ProCert. I hadn't burned it to CD yet but went down to fill out some paperwork. I found out that I needed to take some class that I didn't take. I can substitute another class from undergrad, but that was 12 years ago and like I remember...SHIT!

Friday. Friday I had this great blog post planned as an April Fools, but I could barely muster the energy to teach let alone write a blog post. Hilarious- Fail. Just know it would have been an awesome trick. I honestly had to muster up every ounce of patience for dealing with the aftermath of crappy IA, multiple unmedicated children, and lack of ProCert being done. The fact that I am not in jail right now is a miracle. I ran to the local tack shop to their Birthday Sale and got 5 gallons of Cocosoya Oil for 15% off!! $70 for 5 gallons! I was so happy. I also entered their raffle. I had dinner with some great people, but despite being 8 miles from Denali's barn I didn't make it to see her. I didn't want to drive down the road at night and freak out the owners of the property.

Today. After sleeping for 10 hours (AWESOME) I woke up to have my lovely allergy shots which make my arms swell up to twice their normal size. After getting my shots I was running to meet a friend for lunch when my phone rang. I started screaming before I even answered it. It was the tack store and I knew that I won!! What did I win you ask? I won this:

That my friends is a Sprenger KK Ultra, and it has been my dream to own one for at least the past year and a half. However, I couldn't justify the $125.00 that it costs to buy one. I magically made it from Seattle to the tack store in 20 minutes. Not sure I did it legally, but I was so excited I just had to go pick it up. I walked in squealing like a 7 year old girl. It's beautiful. It's a 5 1/4 so I actually don't know if it will fit Denali, but I own it. I can just stare at it's and be happy. She wears a 5" (HA ,HA, like we use a bridle and a bit right now...) but her loose ring was a 5 1/4 so we'll see. It should fit pretty snug because of the way it lays across their tongue, so I hope it's not too loose. That and that we can use it SOMEDAY.

After having lunch with a friend I ran out to see Denali and show her our new toy. She seemed less than impressed with it, and I (being me) couldn't wait to see if it fit. I don't have a bridle at the barn, so attempted to have her take the bit, just the bit and keep it in. It sort of worked, but I didn't get a good idea since I couldn't hold it and take a good look at it. Tomorrow I'll take out the bridle to see if it fits. She was such a good girl about it.

No one at the barn can believe that she use to act the way she did (and I'm afraid she still can.) She's a favorite and everyone loves her. One woman tonight told me "You know that Denali is a magical horse. There's just something about her." I wanted to tell the woman that when she starts shitting money that will make her magical, but decided to smile and say "I know" because I do.

She seems pretty stiff still. I am going to talk to the vet about injections (Adequan and/or Legend) to help her. She looks like she's 30 when she get up. It's not nero, I know that. Our old vet had mentioned that we should give her Adequan, and then this all happened. Also, has anyone used acetyl-d-glucosamine? I heard it was cheaper than Adequan, but almost as good.

I am in the process of planning a lesson with Barb Apple. I hope that we can make that work this week, as I told her my "tool bag is empty."

Hope all is well with everyone, I have run out of time to blog let alone read blogs. Hopefully next week will be better and I can slack off and catch up!