December 31, 2013

Year End Review....2013

In January I took a lesson with Laurie when I was still getting used to riding Dani.  I felt much more confident after the lesson learning how to yield Dani's hindquarters under saddle.  The rest of the month I rode some but did the beginnings of Clinton Anderson type groundwork.  Dani showed a lot of attitude but eventually learned it didn't do her any good and she's become a pro now!

My long time Ariat paddock boots died finally died so I was in the market to find a new pair.  I started looking at the boots and found that the Pinnacle tall boot was nearly the same price as regular paddock boots so I tried to determine my size.  Dani was working on realizing that the mounting block wasn't scary and I trained her to stand nicely at the block for mounting.

Dani met a couple of my friends, including their young son who absolutely loved her.  No pony rides though since I don't have a small child's helmet in my equipment storage.  Steve came to visit Dani a lot and enjoyed playing with her in the indoor arena....he still hasn't really ridden her yet though!

In march I finally go the right size Dublin Pinnacle boot and have enjoyed them so much!  Very comfortable boot with a casual look.

My friend Jessica came down to meet Dani and we borrowed a friends horse so we could walk around the arena together.  It was fun riding like when we were kids growing up.  Loved playing with Breyer horses as kids but it's fun to play with the full size model as adults! 

I took some fun St. Patrick's Day and some bunny ears pictures for a Julie Goodnight contest and one a DVD of my choice.  Dani was so tolerant and such a good girl!

I joined the Kit Carson Riding Club to meet some horsie people.  The group is awesome so I was excited about the future activities to get involved with.  I started looking for new places to board at and found one to move to at the end of the month.  I was mixed about leaving Whispering Winds since it was such a nice facility but I had reasons for moving...mainly the distance and secondly it was a little too busy of a barn for with lots of kids running around in the arena doing their jumps and making it hard for this still apprehensive riding trying to walk circles.  I started looking for hay as well....totally another major aspect of owning horses!

Our favorite appaloosa friend Rock died from several bouts of colic.  He was only 9 and had a lease rider that was so in love with him.  We were heart broken, Steve loved Rock and even though we weren't going to get a second horse anytime soon the connect Rock had with Steve was so cute!

I purchased 30 bales of nice Timothy and Steve and I got to use our truck for hauling purposes...weee!!  We moved to a ranch just down the road from KCRC.  Uschi and I didn't have luck with Dani getting in her trailer but a gal, K, from KCRC rescued us with her trailer and worked Dani hard outside the trailer.  At a later date I had a training session with K on loading Dani into the trailer so I have an idea what to work on once I finally have a trailer. 

After less than a week at the new facility I moved Dani to KCRC.  I'd been warned about many things regarding the owners of the ranch and decided it would be safest for all to move to the barn at KCRC.  At the time GG was still there with her horse who was for sale, so was K and David of course had his mare Ducky and an older mare there are well.  We settled in well and got all the supplies we needed for taking care of my girl.  She began eating like a mad horse so it was obvious she wasn't comfortable at the other place either!

Around the time of the move I found a great Circle Y saddle on craigslist and tried it out on Dani.  It fit well and was comfy for both Steve and I do ride.  I did take it to a tack store to get the stirrups adjusted and to add some more D rings and such that were missing on it.  It was a great deal so I was pleased.


My brother and his family came out for a week to visit with family in Colorado.  I got to show Scott my baby....Dani and his son Bryson was able to meet his first horse!  It was a fun visit to include a nice picnic with extended family in the Black Forest Regional Park.

On the 21st, the Black Forest Fire started and horses were moved to KCRC among other locations.  Because of my work with Emergency Management I decided to voluntarily evacuate my horse since I wouldn't have the time to do so with my work and because she was a difficult loader and because I didn't have a trailer available to me when ever I would need it.  I had to make a quick decision that would help me do my job and not worry about Dani in the process.  Laurie was able to accept Dani during that time, she also had Rio and Orchid, Uschi's horses.  Uschi's house was fine but the fire burnt a huge patch of forest just behind her house.  It's amazing to drive through the forest and see the damage.  It's unreal that last year I was responding to the Waldo Canyon Fire around this same time period.   


My best friend Marie came to visit for a week in July.  We were in a parade as pooper scoopers for the 4th of July!  Weeeee!!!  We chilled at the pool and just did other fun things.  I even got her up on Dani for a little pony ride.

I continued to work on improvements to horse care like adding a water filter to the trough.  I was also battling algae so found a natural preventative that helped keep the algae amounts down.  It's still a battle!  I was contacted by a gal that owned Dani's full sister, Maddie.  I learned a bit more about the horses pasts and was glad to here how well her sister was doing.  They look so much alike!

In August came the rains.  Everyday it rained and there was a river running through KCRC.  Part of the arena was washed out and I probably lost a lot of sand from Dani's run.  I had to respond for work several times for flooding around the county.  Up north of Denver it was really bad.  This has just been a year for natural disasters in Colorado! 

When I could I worked Dani on a few obstacles like the cowboy curtain.  I tied back the noodles and walked her through.  Slowly I let down more and more noodles until she didn't have any issues walking through.  Now I can ride her through them...just at the walk since even I don't want to get slapped in the face with the metal washers that hold the noodles onto the rope.  Dani learns fast so it's been fun teaching her to accept the noodles and negotiate other obstacles.

September continued with more rain and many busy days at work.  Steve and did manage to get 100 bales for the winter though.  We bought them from a hay charity and have been pretty happy with the hay purchase though I'll be looking for a consistent supplier this year and perhaps certified weed free hay.

My silly Aussie mix Loki, got trampled by Sugar when he ran into her pen and I didn't notice at first.  Luckily he wasn't injured but for a minute or so I was afraid some nerve or spinal damage had been done.  Poor baby!

I worked on more trotting and getting over the fear of speed.  We succeeded and have done many rides with lots of trotting about! Because of the rain and lack of putting on hoof oil as regularly as I should Dani had a hoof chip that freaked me out.  It actually wasn't a big deal but has made me more aware and now I round the hooves regular to prevent chipping in between trims.

My slow feeder has failed, the plastic lattice kept breaking so I've ended up buying a nibblenet.  It doesn't fit as much hay in it as I need so still have been working on making the trough into a slow feeder using a nibblenet sheet.  It's still a work in progress but at least it does slow her down and reduce the wasted hay.

I started to see Stubs around a bit more, running here and there.  I continued to feed her dry food but never got too close to her.  She seemed curious so I always talked sweetly to her when I saw her.

KCRC had a vaccine and floating clinic so it made it very easy to get Dani's fall work done.  The club also had a clean up day with a cow run.  Other club activities included being a pooper scooper for the Veterans day parade but this time I got tot drive an ATV.  That was pretty cool!  Someday I'll ride in a parade but not just yet....

November meant a time change so the days got darker sooner.  I got a night light set up with one of those indoor work lights.  It did the job so I could do groundwork with Dani during the week.  Then we hit some cold spells and I didn't want to do groundwork.  Wuss I know!  Stubs started showing up and hanging out with me and my girl.  I got some wet food to start feeding her when I saw her and it became a consistent thing.  I started planning on how to trap her and get her spayed.  Local Trap Neuter Release groups never got back with me so I was sort of on my own.


In early December I borrowed a trap from a friend and brought Stubs home.  Steve and I already accepted the fact that she probably would be staying in our house if Armani my other cat was okay with it.  He was.  We got her fixed and all her shots.  She's been settling in very well and though we can't pick her up and hold her yet we can love on her, hug her and scratch her itchy spots.  She's made a great transition from feral cat to spoiled house cat in such a short time.

We've had some really frigid cold spells but Dani didn't mind.  The past two weeks I've been off from work which is nice to just chill and do nothing.  We've had a great Christmas too.

Hopefully the New Year will continue to have great blessings for us and our little critter filled home.  I really want to get Dani a pony friend but that mainly depends on my hubby and his work schedule.  None the less we are doing well and enjoying KCRC.

This next year I want to get a trailer, trailer train Dani so she is a perfect little loader and then I want to hit the trails with my horsie friends!  I just need to give confidence to Dani and have confidence in myself that we can overcome our fears....her's are of the trailer experience and mine the fast speeds.  I think we have gotten to a good level of trust in one another and will continue to develop that bond.  I love my girl!

Wishing everyone a great New Year!  Remember it's the Year of the Horse!!!  Make it a good one!!


Venom said...

This is a more sturdy slowfeeder my husband is going to build (a few of) for our herd.

Emmi said...

Sounds like you had a wonderful year! I wish you so much happiness for this next year to come!

L.Williams said...

happy new year

Clipping Path said...

Happy New Year
Clipping Path