Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Really??



Read the description on YouTube.

One word: WOW!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

War Horse

Guess who has a ticket to go see an advanced screening? This girl! I'm pretty excited (mostly because I haven't been to the movies in forever.) The owner of GWB's husband had them pinned up in the barn on Sunday. My friend and I acted like little kids I think when we took them. Actually, the owner of the GWB is currently in CA getting ready to ride in the National Dressage Symposium. A friend of mine went with her to help groom, and when they got there the first horse she saw was Ravel. Drool. We've been messaging her, trying to talk her into getting nice and close and taking pictures. She said she didn't want to embarrass our friend, and another friend of mine agreed that is why she got to go and we are back here at work. (If you followed that.) Ha. I think it's kind of cool that one of the horses I wrangle is the National Champion for 4 year olds. Look where a Craigslist ad get me!

In other news, there is no news, which is good I guess. I'm still checking out horses to ride, but think that I might just take two lessons a week instead. That is about how much time I have to really ride, and I think I will learn a lot faster. We'll see. I'm still suppose to go out and try out the big guy at the barn.

Also, I don't know if I mentioned it on here (Denali gets PISSED if I mention anything other than her) but my husband and I started to foster cats. What's the next logical step? Write a blog about it!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Uterus for Rent?

Before you freak out. The answer was no.

Now for the story.

When I had my momentary freak out over Denali a few weeks go, and felt the urge to rehome her I put an ad up on Dreamhorse. I think I described her to a T and left nothing out. I'm sure that I exaggerated and made her sound much worse than she is, but if someone was really interested in her I wanted them to know all about her. Now that she is at retirement I realized that 95% of my stress was the massive bills that I had. I always pay off my bills and that meant we didn't have much left. Since she moved, I feel so much less stress and I am so glad that she is still MY girl.

Just in the past four days I have had FOUR breeding farms contact me interested in seeing more photos of her, and talking to me about taking her on as a broodmare. FOUR! It makes me sick in the stomach honestly. Of those Four contacts, two of them are racing farms. They want to take my baby and turn her into a baby machine. One of them wants her for her bloodlines, but to breed to their warmblood stallion. The other farm in in Ohio (I think) and breeds and raises Hunters.

I'm a horrible person. I haven't replied to a single person. Not one, and I feel bad. I got one on Wednesday and sort of was shocked. I got two Friday (Black Friday shopping?) and then one today. I don't know what to even say. Denali DOES NOT need to be having babies. She broke so easily, and while her confirmation isn't horrible, it's not "perfect" and I don't want her babies to be broken in a few years and then put into a horrible situation.

In updated Denali information, she is having a grand old time in retirement. They love her, and for that I love them. They sent me a video of her playing with some toys they put in her stall (to try to talk her into going into it.) They always comment on how sweet she is, and what a good girl she is. I'm a proud momma!

Friday, November 25, 2011

One year.

Exactly a year ago today I got the phone call that the "truck has to cancel." A the time I thought it was the worst thing ever, and that all I wanted was for everything to be over. I'm so glad it snowed!

So, for a little fun. I saw this and had to chuckle!

‎20 signs your dressage test need work . . .


Under judges remarks she writes only: "Nice braid job."

Horse confuses dressage arena rail for a cavaletti; exits at K.

Your circles shape reminds the judge that he should pick up eggs on the way home.

Your serpentine was perfect, except that it was supposed to be a straight centerline.

Sitting trot has caused some fillings to be loosened in lower molars.

Your horse believes "free walk" means leaving the arena and heading towards the nearest patch of grass.

Your working trot had you working harder then your horse.

In your salute, your inadvertently use your whip hand causing your horse to perform airs above the ground.

Your walk seems to be more "rare" than "medium."

Impulsion improves only after the horse sees monsters in the decorative shrubbery near letters.

Your horse's response to the canter aid is "Can't, er, what?"

Your twenty meter circle involved jumping the rail twice.

Your halt took place in the judge's lap, instead of at X.

Your thoroughbred interpreted elasticity to involve trying to kick himself in the head with his back feet during the working canter.

Your horse entered the arena at A, and M, and H, and B...

Judge's comments include words like "unusual, dramatic, explosive, and tragic"

Leg-yields involve your leg yielding before the horse does.

Free walk was interpreted by your Arab to involve prancing, a rear, and a few bucks.

The judge asks you take the broken letters with you when you leave.

Voodoo dolls of your horse were found in the possession of the show's grounds manager.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving

I am Thankful for my husband who keeps me sane when I want to give up.
I am Thankful for my family who raised me with strong values and beliefs.
I am Thankful for my friends who are there when I need them the most, even if it means listening to me ramble on and on either excited about something, or terrified.
I am Thankful for Denali, and the extra year that I wasn't suppose to have with her (this was suppose to be her last Thanksgiving last year.)
I am Thankful for Denali's vet for saving her life and giving her the chance to be a horse.
I am Thanksgiving for you, for joining our journey, supporting me and Denali, and being there when I had told things that no one in my personal life know about (and not judging me.)

I hope your Thanksgiving is the best!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Building the Ark

It started to rain sometime last night. Not the normal rain, but bucket dumping, wind blowing, rain. It made me so happy that it worked out that Denali was shipped out already. I would really hate to have this storm hanging out around here this weekend, and have to take Denali down in the storm.

I got an adorable short video of her last night. She looks so happy and that makes my heart sing. I was worried that she'd be lonely and sad, but she seems to have stepped right into her role of snack taster and is happy to do it. The caretakers are so great, I don't know what I did to deserve to find them. I'm so glad that they like Denali so much. I've gotten multiple text messages about how sweet of a girl she is and how much they like her. I did tell them all the horror stories, so they probably thought that I was bringing a flying hell-beast. I know I probably exaggerated, but I don't ever want someone to not know what they are getting, and then Denali to suffer because of it. The caretaker told me she's adding a scoop of grain (total of 2) to try to get a little extra weight on Denali before winter really sets in. I'm glad she's worried about Denali. She's been getting fed 3x a day, and has access to the hay field.

Tonight I had a meeting for the center that I volunteer for and found out that one of my volunteers is taking polo lessons 7 miles from Denali!! We are going to plan trips together. I will drop her at her lesson (it's 3 hours) and go see Nawlers, then pick her back up. I'm glad to have someone to go with.

In other news I went out tonight to watch the owner ride the Dutch Warmblood I might lease. I did NOT realize how big of a horse he is. He is a big, big boy. He's a beautiful, beautiful mover and is a really good boy. He spooked once, and it of course made me nervous. GRR. The owner of the GWB is amazing, and she suggested that I take some lessons on him. I feel really stupid telling people in my life that I am really afraid of riding. Everytime I have ever came off a horse I have hopped right back up. After the trailering accident it took me months to be able to walk normal, so hoping back up wasn't easy. Now, when I get comfortable with a horse, I do okay, but I wish I could just go back and ride all different types of horses with no fear.  It takes a lot to talk myself into getting on their back. I hope to go talk to the doctor soon. I don't know what she can do, but I figure that's the first step to get over my fear. It would be different if I didn't want to ride again, but I miss it a lot. It's hard when my head is telling me NO and my heart is saying get going and ride!

Thanks for your nice comments. I'm glad you won't mind listening to me babble.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Photos!

DSC_0158 ladies
Denali meets Duchess for the first time.
DSC_0161 mares being mares
First, "I HATEZ YOU!"

DSC_0162 hussy part 2
Nah, I lovez you. (HUSSY!)


DSC_0167 pony neighbor
Denali meets Henry the Pony

DSC_0138 meeting of minds
Denali meets the herd of horses through the fence. The pony LOVES her!

DSC_0120 portrait
Beautiful Girl!!

DSC_0115 fenway
Unloading, and calm (unlike mom.)

DSC_0146 hussy
Hussy.

DSC_0116 where is everyone
Hello? Iz just sawz ponies. Wherez they go?

A million thank yous again to Ophie's mom who gave up her Sunday to not only horse handle, but to take the above awesome photos!! I love them! I have gotten several updates on Denali, and that makes me so happy. She is doing great. She went into her stall at some point over the night and they found her there munching this morning. They sent me a picture of just her nose (because she thought the camera was a cookie.) She looks bright eyed and really happy. It makes me feel really good that she's doing well.

I had to call up the vet hospital that they use today to set up an account. They had me go through the things that I authorize for them to treat, and things that I do not authorize. They asked me lots of questions, and it made me feel good about the move. I gave them our credit card account and an amount that they treat her without contacting us first.

Still can't believe that she's moved. It went so well. I'm so happy and feel so much less stress. Getting $1,000 bills each month takes a toll on ones sanity. I just hope that she does well at her new barn. I was happy that the caretaker told me she thought Denali could gain some weight. Makes me feel better that they want her a little fatter (instead of her looking fine, and maybe not trying to get weight on her.) She looks great for Denali, but anything extra that they can get on is great.

As for this blog, I'm not sure what to do with it. Do I stop here? Do I just pop in to do random Denali updates? Or include my new horsey exploits here? I don't know yet. Thoughts?

This week last year I was in intense pain emotionally and physically. A year ago we decided to put Denali down and my heart broke. I love the idea of retirement. She's still my girl, and she will always be my girl. This week is going so much better than last year! Yay Denali!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Moving Day

Today was a very emotional day for me. I woke up this morning at 6, and just laid in bed. I enjoyed the first few seconds of the day before I remembered what was happening today. Ophie's mom and boyfriend showed up at my house around 7 and we left to head to the barn. My stomach was doing the biggest tumbles and I thought that I was going to vomit.

It was a beautiful day! The ground was frosted over, and Denali was happily munching on her breakfast. It made me sad to see her so happy, knowing that she was about to leave her best friends for a new adventure.
Last breakfast with friends.
Being that I was a nervous, vomiting, wreck Ophie's mom and one of the caretakers went and got Denali from the field and wrapped her legs. I couldn't go out. I was so nervous and upset and I know that she can smell that a mile away.

When they walked her down the road I started to cry, but held it together. Here was my horse and my best friend had to handle her because I was too afraid. It was a very odd moment of emotions of guilt/sadness/gratefulness. I helped to put her cooler on her for the trailer ride and finished packing the truck.

The hauler was so nice to Denali (who mind you was totally calm as a cucumber.) He made sure her hay net was ready to go while I got her shipping halter on her (read: Ophie's mom held her while I put her halter on over her rope halter.) We handed her over and he walked her up to the trailer, and she walked right on as if she's done this everyday for her entire life.



Auntie, Iz good girl, momma's crazy. Whatz the deal?

We had her out of the field, wrapped, and loaded in under 20 minutes. I only started crying a few times and we were off. The trip was 100 miles from the rehab barn to the retirement barn. The haulers said they could call us when they got close if we wanted to go ahead. No, no thanks! I made my poor husband drive behind the trailer the entire way, while I yelled at people who got between my car and the trailer. 

Ophie's mom and Ophie's mom's boyfriend helped make the trip go fast and we were there in a little over two hours. We stopped with about 20 miles to go, and Denali was still calm as could be. I was so proud of her! I gave her a cookie and a pat on the nose. The hauler had brought his retired show horse to keep Denali company, and I know that was probably a big help in keeping her calm.

We showed up at the farm around 11am. We drove in front of the trailer and opened the gates. I went back into panic mode and sort of freaked out when the trailer stopped. You can see how Denali handled getting off the trailer below.

video
I was so proud, and so relieved. What a good, good girl. It was great to see her act like a normal horse. She has never gotten off a trailer so calm. I LOVED the hauler and highly recommend him! Denali usually AT LEAST runs around and is an idiot.  The caretaker of the property took her from the hauler and was so nice to Denali, but still expected her to listen. It was a great feeling of, "hu, I think this is going to be okay."

Denali and the caretaker walked around a little bit. Ophie's mom unwrapped her legs for me (see what I mean, totally incapacitated by fear. Boo.) Denali kept looking out into the pasture to check out the three horses who were there before they took off running into the barn (they thought she was going in there.) The care taker took Denali into her outdoor arena and let her loose. You can see the introduction below.

video

I paid her board and handed over the contract to the owner/caretaker's husband while she was showing Denali aroun the property. She kept telling me what a good girl she was, and she was! She walked Denali to her stall/run and introduced her t Duchess. Denali wasn't sure if she should kick Duchess or present herself for breeding. She decided to present herself and started to clack. Oh Denali. Duchess was in her stall, and was NOT having this new horse in HER paddock. It was really funny. Here I was so worried about Denali, I didn' think that another horse might not like her. It's usually the other way around. Denali didn't seem too concerned about Duchess, and was slightly interested in Henry the pony. She went around eating the grass.
Look Ma! No mud!

While Denali was settled in I showed her Denali's "essentials." She asked my husband if Denali had a stylist that came with her too. Opps. She does have a lot of stuff, but she might need it! I did take back her Back on Track blanket/boots and her winter coat that would be great if she lived in Antarctica. The owner reminded me that she works in Seattle and can pick up anything that Denali might need.

We were out of there by noon. The owners seemed to want Denali to get settled, and with anxious, babbling me, that's hard for her to do. She was SO GOOD. I was just so proud of her. She wasn't even drugged, but the vet did have us give her some calming homeopathic stuff.

I've gotten two updates. The first one as telling just "how sweet of a mare she is" and the other one that they are going to wait to put her and Duchess in together. Duchess isn't having the new neighbor yet, and they don't want one of them to get hurt. Also, Denali REFUSES to go into her stall. They have the water and food in there, but had to go out tonight to put her water outside because Denali just won't do it on her own. While we were there she went into her stall because we had snacks. I'm glad they are keeping an eye on her. She also didn't get her breakfast so I made up some grain/supplements. She sort of poked it around, but didn't dive in. It was only a little bit of grain since it's new to her, but she didn't seem interested. I hope she ate it!

Overall I'm really happy, and really sad. My friends have been amazing and so supportive. Ophie's mom took a whole day and spent it helping me, and I don't know what I'd do without her. I'm so glad that Denali settled in so well. I'm so glad that I decided to do retirement and not give her away. She is such a special mare, and I love her like I could love no other horse. I think a break is good though. I'm also sad that I won't be able to see her as often. I know that I could make it down there if something happens (GOD FORBID!) I am going to try to go down this week, and in December. I want to at least make it down there once a month, if not more to check on her. I just hope she's okay! It's so hard. I want to send the woman 500 text messages, but I won't. I don't want her to realize HOW crazy I can be. :)

Ophie's mom took some amazing photos today! I will post those as soon as I can steal them from her!
In other news, a friend of mine leased a horse (18 year old Dutch Warmblood) but her horse she bought showed up yesterday. She wants me to ride him for the remainder of his lease. He is boarded at the GWB, and use to work at a therapeutic riding center. I remember him from being there, and I know him from working on Sundays. He'd be perfect, but I just don't know if I'm ready to get back in the saddle yet. I think panic attacks need to stop first. Either that or strong drugs! ha.

Thanks for all your kind words.



Friday, November 18, 2011

T -36 hours

I took today off from work. I had to go to a doctor's appointment for my allergies and then Ophie's mom became Dr. Ophie's mom! She got her doctorate in Neurobiology (correct me if I'm wrong.) I think I knew what 4 of the words were in her title. :)

During her defense I got a phone call from the hauler. He called to say that he could haul her down this Sunday. Instantly I went into panic mode (and have been there ever since.) I panicked and told him NO that I wanted to wait until next Sunday. Then I thought about it and realized that really, this Sunday is much better. I have most of next week off, so if something happens I can run down to her. I called my vet, and the caretaker to see if this worked for them. The caretaker said she'd prefer this weekend too. Gulp.

I have so many emotions running through my head. I'm a nervous wreck. I realize that many of you don't see the big deal. This is a huge deal for me. I have never been this far from her. I am "officially" retiring Denali to a life of green pastures and friends to keep her company. I wish she could be closer to us, but the closer to Seattle you get the more expensive it gets.

The vet had her final appointment with Denali. She said that overall Denali looks good, and that she will really miss her. I will miss her too! I know that I'll still see her, but she saved Denali's life and for that I am forever grateful. I'm just afraid that something will happen to Denali and that I won't be able to make it to her. At least 63 miles is closer than 183 miles.

Think good, safe trailer rides and non-Duchess killing thoughts!! We need them. I need a stiff drink.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Roar!

So, I don't know how many haulers I've called over the past three day. Regardless, not one has gotten back to me. Not one. How long does it normally take to hear back from haulers? I've always had friends haul for me, but after last November, and me traumatizing Pia's mom, I stopped. I think it's safer for everyone involved if the person who hauls her has no emotional attachment to me, or Denali.

Also, I talked to my doctor today. HA! She won't give me Xanax. BOO!!  She told me that I have PTSD, and need to go talk to someone, and drugging myself won't help unless I talk to someone first. Sometimes my doctor is a little to blunt, but that's why I like her....I guess. She's been my doctor for 7 years. I still want the drugs.

Hopefully I have this figured out this week (horse, not drugs.)

Monday, November 14, 2011

After our whirlwind of a Friday I was exhausted most of the weekend. Saturday I ended up going into the Doctor's because my left knee kept popping out of place and eventually it happened with every step. Boo. I think at this point I can just diagnose myself. I have some syndrome (of which I'm too lazy to google to spell it correctly.) Long story short ligaments swell and it causes the knee cap to dislocate when I walk. SO, instead of working at the Giant Warmblood Barn and having my riding lesson I was suppose to "take it easy."

HA.

I did call off at GWB (with more than 24 hours notice AND a replacement) and left a message at the lesson barn. I was a bit bummed and was looking forward to my lesson. Sunday morning I woke up and was feeling really anxious. I hadn't seen Denali in a week and after spending the week trying to figure out what's best for her I was feeling a bit stressed. I talked to Ophie's mom and we planned our first "Tour de' Barn" in a while. We went out to see Denali first. She looked oh so good! She's so happy, which of course makes me feel guilty, and the "what ifs" start to flood my brain which of course makes me an anxious, nervous wreck. (I e-mailed my Doctor to ask her if she'd prescribe xanax, lol.)

After visiting with Denali and giving her the apples I brought her I wished her a "Happy You Almost Killed Me a Year Ago Today" and we were on our way. We stopped down at the barn to say hi to one of the caretakers and I told her that I found retirement board for Nawlers. I still have NO idea of when we're moving her. I haven't heard from the woman (which in turn stresses me out.) I keep reminding myself that I'm only moving Denali to save some money, and the worst thing that is happening right now is me spending money. The world will not end. Still, if the one barn doesn't work out and I need to start my search again, I'm going to be sad. The woman is very laid back, and I don't want to drive her nuts, BUT GAH! It's SO HARD!

We drove the 63 miles (no joke) from Denali's barn to Ophie's barn. Ophelia was running around in her paddock when we turned up. She's such a pretty girl. I got to meet two horses that were just imported from Germany and showed up yesterday. God I wish I had that kind of money. I promise I'd be generous with it. They were beautiful of course.

Ophie has been taking lessons from Denali on how to get out of work. Her mom just road her lightly, but she was a good girl of course. It was fun to go barn hoping with Ophie's mom. I miss our daily barn trips. I miss being at a social barn, with people to hang out with. I haven't had that in over a year really. It's also nice because there is no drama.

In other news Green n' Green = Black n' Blue had it's 100,000 visitor sometime since yesterday! WOW! Thank you everyone who reads this blog, you amaze me! I have the best readers EVER. Also, this morning I picked up Andrea's gift that I commissioned. It is pretty much the most amazing thing EVER! I hope she loves it. It's KILLING ME to not put a picture of it up here. KILLING ME! Those of you who donated will have your name added to the card that I send her. I haven't done that part yet, and it will probably come second to this gift.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

More Begging

I know I often get on here and beg you to do something that will benefit me in some way! :) IF you use Facebook, could you PLEASE do the following.

"Like" Chase Community Giving
"Search" for Northwest Equine Stewardship Center
"Vote" for Northwest Equine Stewardship Center


Chase Community Giving
The "Share" with your friends asking them to vote.

We just need to make it into the top 100. You have 10 votes and can only vote once for each charity. Feel free to post "suggestions" of how to use the other 9 votes in the comments section. This money could help us do SO much for so many horses. If you can't find it search for Denali Slew in the search bar and friend my horse. She has the link on her page.

Please? (Said in my most pathetic voice)

Friday, November 11, 2011

27+ hours, 500 miles, $130 in gas

So we're back!

We left work yesterday at 6pm and started our barn checking out trip. I'm glad that we did, it was fun to get away with my husband even though I was an anxious, nervous wreck the entire time. We got to our hotel around 9pm.

I wish I would have taken a photo of our hotel room. I have not laughed so hard in a while. We had the "mini suite."  We opened the door to the room, and yes, it had two beds....two twin beds! I proceeded to call my husband Ricky (as in Ricky Richardo) all night and we were in bed by 10. We left the next morning to drive the hour to the first barn.

The first barn is in Eastern Washington. That's one thing I love about Washington state. You can go from the beach, through the rain forest, through the mountains, to the high desert. The first barn was in the desert. Little rain and a lot of sunshine. That was it's main selling point for me. The woman was so nice, and so knowledgeable. The horses looked great, and everyone seemed really happy. We left there feeling like, "Yes, I could send Denali to live there."

Then we started our 4 hour drive to the next barn. We had to drive over a higher pass through the Cascade Mountain Range. It was snowing and there was some road work. We got to the barn right around 4 o'clock. It was really nice. She has 28 acres, and the property is right on a river in the shadow of Mount Rainer.  The property owner showed me around and introduced me to who she hopes will be Denali's new friend. She's an older OTTB who gets picked on by the other horses. I told the woman that either A. Denali will take her under her wing and protect her with every ounce of her being, or B. Denali will make it her job to end Duchess' life on this earth. I never can tell. I think it will be fine...hopefully. *gulp*

The barn has stalls with runs off of them. I like the idea of Denali being able to come in if she wants to, and be able to stay out if she wants to. I think that will help her anxiety a lot. During the winter she and Duchess will be turned out in the hay field. It's HUGE and flat. In the summer they will be in a really long run. It reminded me of a football field, cut in half the long way. I told her that we'd take it. She was really laid back about everything, which makes me nervous, but I think I need that. She was also HILARIOUS. I love sarcastic people being one myself.

There are a load of trails around and one down to the river. I think Denali would like going down to play in the water. There is also NO MUD. There was some wet ground by the gates, but it wasn't muddy. She said the soil is sandy, and drains really well.

 The caretaker has vet tech experience and her best friend lives 10 minutes away AND is the vet. Good to know. This barn is only an hour and a half drive. Much better than the four hour drive of the other barn. I hope I'm making the right choice. So now to figure out how to get her there. I need to hire a hauler, but need to wait to see what day the other new boarder is showing up. Any suggestions of something I can give her for the trailer ride? I think I'm going to need more drugs than she is!!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Thank you!

Thank you everyone for your nice comments! You make my day and help me keep from going TOTALLY crazy.

I spent most of this week either doing e-mail, or on the phone talking to different boarding barns. That's when I wasn't at work.

You know Denali....and I know you'll find this shocking, but she's not the most desired horse at the barn. I didn't want to lie to them, and maybe I made her sound worse than she is....but I don't want to get a phone call in a few weeks to "come pick her up."

Tomorrow my husband and I are taking off for a long road trip to check out three barns.

One barn sounded so awesome. The woman SOUNDS amazing. Board is $300, but she has never done retirement board (meaning I live 90 minutes away without traffic.) She has a stallion, and a 10 year old. I'm worried Denali would break down the fence to get to the stallion. She's a hussy. Plus, Denali + Small Children = Bad news. Better Safe than Sorry. She was so nice I almost wanted to make the trip "just in case."

It's narrowed down to Barn C (on the map) 4 hours from Seattle. We are leaving tomorrow to get "almost" there and staying in a hotel. We have an appointment there at 10am on Friday. She has been doing retirement and rehab board for a long time. Cathy, (who wrote the Fugly Blog) told me she boarded some of her horses there and she was happy with the care. The weather pattern there is much drier and sunnier than where Denali currently lives. Supposedly 300 days of sunshine a year. It's in the Yakima Valley.

Cost: $200 a month, (Plus $1.00 a day to feed mash, $2.00 per blanket change, plus feed.) I figured around $250 a month. Denali has already been blanketed, so she'll need to keep it on (plus she'd drop weight like crazy.)

The other barn is a private facility Barn B. It is 65 miles from Seattle. I really like the lady that I talked to, and she has experience with Thoroughbreds. She sent me some photos and the set up looks great. The price is $225 a month. She mentioned that they get mud in the winter (which I'd guess since they are in the shadow of Mt. Rainer.)

I am skipping over the initial barn (Barn D on Map) I don't need crazy right now. I really hope that one of these barns work out. I know that I will have a hard time moving her that far. At least now I can go see her whenever I want to visit. I will need to plan the trip to either of these barns.

The trip is close to 500 miles and 9 hours of drive time. JOY!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

WHY!

I am a true believe that things happen for a reason. I never use to think that, but the more that time goes on the more that I am convinced that there is someone watching over me (and sometimes I fell like they're fucking with me.) I have spent the past week in tears. I think it's an automatic reaction to last November. I just hate November. Thank you for your kind words. This totally, 100% sucks.

This week is one of those weeks. The person who contacted me about Denali MIGHT not work out. I have had enough people tell me "don't"  that I am obviously worried. I left Denali while I was in Denmark and she was left in a a stall for the majority of 4 months. I don't want that to happen. They all told me that they have no fear of her harming Denali, but that they'd still not do it. It all was for personal reasons, but not horse care-taking reasons. I can deal with crazy, as long as the horse is taken care of, but still. I am going to check it out anyway. Even if it's a wasted trip.

So, me being me, once I make a decision I need to go with it. I decided to look into real retirement board for Denali. That makes sense. I can ship her off somewhere a little dryer and she will be happy, I will be paying less (which is the one thing that stresses me out the most), and we both get a break. Then maybe in a few years, when we move from Seattle, I will be ready to be her leader. I will still look for that "perfect" home for her, but let's be honest. Broken TB mares are a dime a dozen. I have two additional places that I'm going to try to see on Friday. That totals almost 9 hours in the car round trip. DAMN HORSE! I just can't ship her off somewhere without looking at it myself.

Does anyone know of an easy way to search for Retirement board? I want her in WA state for now. I need to be able to check up on her.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

...where to start....when to end.

I think that November has proved it impossible for me to enter the month, and have everything go as normal. Where do I start? I guess at the beginning, and since you read this blog I can skip that part. You know our story. I have been struggling with this decision for a long, long time.

This is the email that I sent out last night to some horse people that I really admire:

This is the hardest e-mail I think that I have ever written and I know that many tears will fall while I type the words.. I need to re-home my precious, love of my life, Denali. We have been through more in 3 years than I think most owners go through in a lifetime. She's my first horse, so perhaps I'm wrong, and this was a normal path for every horse owner. I love Denali more than anything, but finally realized that I am being totally unfair to her, and unfair to myself. A year ago we had an accident in the trailer which was 100% my fault. I scared her and she trampled me. I'm probably only here because my husband pulled me out. It has been almost a year, but I am still unable to do much more with her than lead her around and that has been a huge step for me. Physically I'm fine, emotionally I have deep scars, which grow deeper as time goes on. I try to work with her and do other things that will help me gain confidence. I have refused to admit that I am scared, but I can't lie to myself anymore. I have gotten to the point that I am able to handle most horses, and finally rode for the first time in 9 months a few weeks ago. With everything she still sends a terror deep into my soul, which in turn breaks my heart into a million pieces. I love this horse more than anything, but can't be around her without a bone crumpling fear. I know that she knows.


Denali is a 7 year old (foal date: 2/22/2004) Black Bay Thoroughbred mare (reg. name: Storm City Slew.) She is not the world's easiest horse, but does have the world's best personality. She loves a schedule, and likes to know what to expect. She does well with someone with confidence and intermediate to advance horse handling skills. She is NOT for a first time horse owner, I learned this the hard way. She gets excited if she has been in her stall overnight, or if something spooks her. Denali has not been ridden in 9 months, and before that it was 7 months. In April 2010 she tore her left hind suspensory. She isn't 100% sound but works out of her lameness enough that she could probably be used for light riding by an advanced rider. She does well under saddle, but does the spin and bolt out of nowhere which has unseated me more times than I can count. She has only ever bucked one time. That was in February 2011, after our accident when I tried to get on her again. I know that I am so nervous that I make her feel uneasy. She has never bucked with anyone other than me. I know that I scare her. :(

She also has some arthritis in her neck. It flairs up if she is in her stall for long periods of time. She does well (and LOVES) being outside 24/7. I purchased her from the Enumclaw Auction in July 2008. She had raced one time. To give you a taste of her personality, she tried to bite a horse near her during the race when the horse started to beat her. She had intermittent training for the first 6 months and pretty much just learned how to be a horse. After that I put her into dressage training, where she demonstrated true potential. Sadly in October 2009 she displayed some neurological signs that were first diagnosed as EPM. She was treated for EPM, but I found out later that she has arthritis, not EPM. After EPM was the suspensory.


She has been staying at NWESC under the amazing care of Dr. H since November 13, 2011 (also, the date of our accident.) I don't know what Denali is destined to be in this life. All I know is that she deserves a life, and not one that I can give her. I have worked two jobs (teaching and tutoring) to do the best for her that I could. To pay for the bodywork that would help her to be the best that she could be. To put her into training (2009-2010) to make her a proper horse. She has never wanted for anything. I love this horse, I will always love this horse. I know that if the day comes that she finds her "forever" person that a piece of my heart will load into that trailer and I will never be the same.

This e-mail was extremely difficult for me to write, but I know that the best way to find a horse a new amazing home is by asking amazing horse people. She will be going out on contract giving me the first right of refusal as well as site/reference checks. I saved her from slaughter and it is my nightmare that she will end up there again. If you know anyone who might be interested in my sweet mare please forward them my way. She has more supplies than most horses her age, and they will be going with her. (Blankets, wraps, etc.)

Thank you for taking the time to read this rambling mess. I feel numb and don't want judged. Please know that I have thought about this long and hard, but have been putting this off for a long time, but I love her and realize that she needs "her" person that can give her the attention only she deserves.

I was worried about some of them and how they would respond. I had to ask them though because they are very well respected. However, everyone was so nice, and very understanding and made me feel better and worse at the same time.  I wasn't going to share this with you, because I don't handle criticism well. I LOVE all of you, but there is the occasional ass. I can't deal with that one ass, especially when making choices I don't want to have to make. Plus, I figured that re-homing a broken down, TB mare that you don't want to be used as a baby making machine would take years.

It took less than 12 hours.

I got an e-mail this morning and then I spent over an hour on the phone with a woman who has 17 acres on the other side of the Cascade Mountain range. Higher up, dryer air, less rain. It is 2 hours from Seattle. Denali will have 4 thoroughbred siblings. One has very similar bloodlines to Denali (and from photos looks JUST like her.) I have been facebook friends with her for years, so she has followed our journey there. I don't know if she knows about this blog.

Best part? Currently, I will remain her owner and this woman will be the caretaker. I will pay $150 to help offset the cost for 6 months. In 6 months we will meet to decide what I want to do. I am allowed to visit her whenever I want. This will just be retirement board. More of a care lease with me kicking in some money. $150 is FAR LESS than the $1,000+ I've been paying for the past months...yes. $1,000+ each month.

I couldn't be happier, and I couldn't be sadder. Obviously I am not going to load my horse in a trailer and ship her off to a place I have never been to. Friday my husband and I are going to make the trip over the mountains to check out the ranch. I will spend the week making sure that she is who she says she is and isn't going to pull crazy out on me. If this is going to happen it will need to happen soon. I am going to schedule a shipper now, and cancel if the place turns out to be a hell hole.Winter has already set in up in the mountains, and the pass closes periodically. I don't want Denali in the trailer stuck for 12 hours. I've seen a ton of pictures, but you can take nice pictures of a shit hole.

I really hope this works out. I don't want to give up Denali. I really don't, but I think a break will be good for both of us. It will give me time (and money) to learn and grow as a horsewoman. Then when I have a clear mind I can make a decision. Cross your fingers that it works out the way it's suppose to work out.

.....okay....comment....but be nice.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Buck Clinic

We are actually having fall in the PNW. In years past we have gone from summer to rain and leaves all over with rain all the time and no sun. This year the leaves actually changed and are still on the trees. The weather is cool in the morning and in the 50's during the day. The sun is shining and it's beautiful.

I started my new job a few weeks ago, and today got my paycheck. It's nice to have some extra money to help pay for the mare-beast, but sometimes it's just discouraging. In order to save any money I needed to work this job, but working this job keeps me in Seattle. I don't make it to the barn, have been out there two times in four weeks!! TWICE! Maybe that's why I feel so craptastic.

A week ago I got a cold, and it kept getting worse, but did I stop and rest? Nope. I went to the Buck Brannaman clinic. It, of course, was AWESOME!! I was so glad that I made the drive down to see him in person. A friend of mine was there and we kept commenting on how we thought our horses would behave. She owns a fiery red head Saddlebred mare. The clinic was fascinating. I took a load of pictures, but can't find my camera to post them (but I will.) There were 22 horses in the session that I watched. It was the Horsemanship 1. Here is the discription from the website:


"For the green horse and rider already comfortable in the snaffle bit along with aged horses needing continued work. This is the first stage of progressing into the bridle with all basic movements introduced. All levels of riders - no matter what discipline - will benefit. The class features strictly dry work - no cattle. All maneuvers stress the vaquero style of riding and are appropriate for horses from first level snaffle to experienced bridle horses. Hackamore horses welcome."

I wish that I could have seen a colt starting clinic, but I took what I could get. I will post pictures soon.

Sunday my friends and I did a 5k. NOT the best idea when I've been sick because today my body has decided that it's done. I woke up coughing so hard that I kept getting sick. I went into work and promptly walked back out and slept for 4 hours. I feel more human like.

Hope all is well with you. I need a few more hours in the day. Let me know if I can borrow some of yours!