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TracyA

Dressage Chit Chat #23

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My trainer has a Clyde stallion who bred a few times before she bought him. Sam throws NICE babies. He adds about a hand in height to the mare, and has a couple nice paint crosses on the ground.

I'm waiting to take my last final of the semester. It starts in about twenty-five minutes. So right around 4:30, I'll be free. Then I need to find out if it is worth driving into work with the expected ice/snow storm headed our way. I'd rather just drive home, but we'll see. I already told them I'd be a bit late, and I will call before heading out. I HATE driving in ice. And hey, I don't drive farther than I need to since my car has no heat right now... :(

Have a good rest of the week!

Tracy

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KTS-Somerimes it is so hard to resist.

3Say-How do you like the weather now. High of 28 degrees. I so can not wait until sprins. Mayhap I will see you at Bucks. I don't know what I have planned for show season yet. My niece will probably start riding sometime during the summer. Of course she will beusing her Aunt T's horse but she will be riding western. I hate teaching the young ones ebglish.

Well the weather has been awful. I got to ride one day last week. The ring is un der a thick coating of ice. So no riding for a bit. So I have a major case of indoor envy.

Holidays are almost done. YAY. Working in retail can kill the holidays for you. I hope everyone has a nice ans safe holiday.

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Happy Holidays everyone!

I have indoor envy too...but the past two days it is even too cold to ride with an indoor:-) Shelby is going to the trainers next month so I can keep riding all winter:-)

Right now I am just trying to keep up with all of the family holiday stuff. Wrapping, baking, shopping...I am beat. School starts in two weeks. And doing chores in this crappy weather wears me out!

I hope everyone enjoys their breaks!!!

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I hear ya on the crappy weather Beckham. Although our is nothing compared to yours, we aren't used to bad weather. It has been unseasonably cold, rain, freezing drizzle, ice, below freezing temps! Yuck! I have not been able to ride since last Sat. A friend and I were going to trailer to a state park tomorrow and ride on the trails for a while, but since neither one of us has been able to ride lately, we postponed it.

On a good note, I am on Cmas break for two weeks and enjoying my time off in my new house. I have decorated like never before and my Mom is coming on Friday. Can't wait. She has not even seen the new place yet.

So everyone be safe, have fun, stay warm and Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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It's Christmas Eve!!!! YAY! LOL Merry Christmas everyone!

I do have more equitana pics, but they're on my computer which is currently dead from a virus. So hopefully they will be recovered so I can share :) I'm on my dad's laptop so I apologise for any mistakes, it's just not the same as my 'puter...

Holly, I bought him... you ready for this LOL... a kieffer half pad which I think he loves, a leather halter that I just got his name engraved on... the one on him in my sig pic, a book/DVD set from Andrew Mclean who my trainer rides with and we "follow" his systems. They had a stall for our biggest tack store chain which was GREAT value. Lightning desperately needed a new halter and flymask so I bought them a couple of weeks before we went, cost me $25 a piece. Got the same ones for $13 each at equitana. Then another that retails for $30, for $13 as well. New half chaps... ummm, I think thats all apart from some odds and ends, I could have bought so much more, but I'm sure I'll be going back :) My mum, bless her cotton socks, went with me to the kieffer stand (mmm heaven in Melbourne lol) and I saw the most beautiful bridle that didn't have a price tag so while waiting to ask the man if it was expensive or really expensive for my own curiosity, asked me if I should ask them if they have it in cob LOL, I told her to wait for the price..... $595 LOL. That turned into a novel, anyway I hope you have Fleck sorted out soon, and you don't get too wet! That picture is tooooo cute! Everyone looks so enthusistic.. my christmas pics usually turn out with everyone looking as impressed as Beckham's dogs haha.

Boocoo, yay for healthy hooves! I can't wait to hear of you and Beau moving up the levels!

Beckham, what a great compliment on Beckham! and it sounds like a great step in getting a new trainer. Lmao, your dogs are adorable even when they look like you're torturing them

Tracy, poor colleen, I hope you can make her comfortable and happy again

csa, brrr, hope it warms up some, so you can ride. I'll share some of my warmth with you, although there isn't really that much of it this year...

Lauren, ahaha yup he does, he goes and sulks away from the herd when he has it on, then goes and lays down and pouts, then stands at the gate and calls for my trainer to come take it off. She's having to put it on at night so she can't see him, and he can't see her to call. It's a hard life ya know? LOL

Glad to hear Scotch is still on the up and up!

KTS, ahhhh gotta love those horses right?! If it's not one thing, it's another.

Lightning's having Christmas off, well 2 weeks, so he can have a break, and my trainer can too! My last ride was on Saturday, it's now Wednesday night and I'm wondering how I'm going to make 2 weeks LOL. I've brought all my tack home to clean, I made a new browband.. I'm running out of horsey thing to do ahhhhh.

We left off working on straightening the leg yield, and me feeling where exactly his haunches are by moving them around and making him really, truly straight. Not sure where we'll be when I get back on, but my last ride was much more consistent, so I was happy.

I can type and watch the TV at the same time on this thing! WOW lol. I'm watching Christmas carols and feeling all Christmasy...

Hope everyone has a good day/night/whatever time it is there and a wonderful safe Christmas!!!

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It's Christmas Eve!!!

Yes, my dogs hated having their picture taken...they promptly ran off and pulled the hats off as soon as I snapped that picture! HAHAHA!

Have a GREAT Christmas everyone!!!!!

Edited by Beckham03

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Merry Christmas to our friends in NZ and Aus, Merry *Almost* Christmas to the rest of us. :) I saw something posted on the yahoo blind horses group that I just had to share. Enjoy!

Tracy

Your Horse is Your Gift

To have a horse in your life is a gift. In the matter

of a few short years, a horse can teach a young girl

courage, if she chooses to grab mane and hang on

for dear life. Even the smallest of ponies is

mightier than the tallest of girls. To conquer the

fear of falling off, having one's toes crushed, or

being publicly humiliated at a horse show is

an admirable feat for any child. For that, we can be

grateful.

Horses teach us responsibility. Unlike a bicycle or a

computer, a horse needs regular care and most of it

requires that you get dirty and smelly and up off the

couch. Choosing to leave your cozy kitchen to break

the crust of ice off the water buckets is to choose

responsibility. When our horses dip their noses and

drink heartily; we know we've made the right choice.

Learning to care for a horse is both an art and a

science. Some are easy keepers, requiring little more

than regular turn-out, a flake of hay, and a trough of

clean water. Others will test you - you'll struggle to

keep them from being too fat or too thin. You'll have

their feet shod regularly only to find shoes gone

missing. Some are so accident-prone you'll

swear they're intentionally finding new ways to

injure themselves.

If you weren't raised with horses, you can't know

that they have unique personalities. You'd expect

this from dogs, but horses? Indeed, there are clever

horses, grumpy horses, and even horses with a

sense of humor. Those prone to humor will test you by

finding new ways to escape from the barn when you

least expect it.

Horses can be timid or brave, lazy or athletic,

obstinate or willing. You will hit it off with some horses and

others will elude you altogether. There are as many "types" of

horses as there are people - which makes the whole

partnership thing all the more interesting.

If you've never ridden a horse, you probably assume

it's a simple thing you can learn in a weekend.

You can, in fact, learn the basics on a Sunday, but

to truly ride well takes a lifetime. Working with a

living being is far more complex than turning a key in

the ignition and putting the car or tractor in "drive."

In addition to listening to your instructor, your

horse will have a few things to say to you as well. On a

good day, he'll be happy to go along with the program

and tolerate your mistakes; on a bad day, you'll swear

he's trying to kill you. Perhaps he's naughty or perhaps

he's fed up with how slowly you're learning his language.

Regardless, the horse will have an opinion. He may choose to

challenge you (which can ultimately make you a better rider)

or he may carefully carry you over fences - if it suits him. It all

depends on the partnership - and partnership is what it's all

about.

If you face your fears, swallow your pride, and are willing to

work at it, you'll learn lessons in courage, commitment,

and compassion in addition to basic survival skills. You'll

discover just how hard you're willing to work toward a goal,

how little you know, and how much you have to learn.

And, while some people think the horse "does all the

work", you'll be challenged physically as well as mentally.

Your horse may humble you completely. Or, you may find that

sitting on his back is the closest you'll get to heaven.

You can choose to intimidate your horse, but do you

really want to? The results may come more quickly, but will

your work ever be as graceful as that gained through trust?

The best partners choose to listen, as well as to tell. When

it works, we experience a sweet sense of accomplishment

brought about by smarts, hard work, and mutual understanding

between horse and rider. These are the days when you know with

absolute certainty that your horse is enjoying his work.

If we make it to adulthood with horses still in our

lives, most of us have to squeeze riding into our

over saturated schedules; balancing our need for

things equine with those of our households and

employers. There is never enough time to ride, or to

ride as well as we'd like. Hours in the barn are stolen

pleasures.

If it is in your blood to love horses, you share your life

with them. Our horses know our secrets; we braid our

tears into their manes and whisper our hopes into their

ears. A barn is a sanctuary in an unsettled world, a sheltered

place where life's true priorities are clear: a warm place to sleep,

someone who loves us, and the luxury of regular meals. Some

of us need these reminders.

When you step back, it's not just about horses - it's about love, life,

and learning. On any given day, a friend is celebrating the birth of a

foal, a blue ribbon, or recovery from an illness. That same day, there

is also loss: a broken limb, a case of colic, a decision to sustain a

life or end it gently. As horse people, we share the accelerated life

cycle of horses: the hurried rush of life, love, loss, and death that

caring for these animals brings us. When our partners pass, it is

more than a moment of sorrow.

We mark our loss with words of gratitude for the ways

our lives have been blessed. Our memories are of joy,

awe, and wonder. Absolute union. We honor our horses for their

brave hearts, courage, and willingness to give.

To those outside our circle, it must seem strange. To

see us in our muddy boots, who would guess such poetry

lives in our hearts? We celebrate our companions with praise

worthy of heroes. Indeed, horses have the hearts of warriors

and often carry us into and out of fields of battle.

Listen to stories of that once-in-a-lifetime horse; of

journeys made and challenges met. The best of horses

rise to the challenges we set before them, asking little in

return.

Those who know them understand how fully a horse can

hold a human heart. Together, we share the pain of sudden

loss and the lingering taste of long-term illness. We shoulder

the burden of deciding when or whether to end the life of a true

companion.

In the end, we're not certain if God entrusts us

to our horses--or our horses to us. Does it matter?

We're grateful God loaned us the horse in the first place.

Author Unknown

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Well today the weather turned sunny and warm and I had a lovely ride. Beau was awesome! But then I had some sad news as well. My husband called me from work and one of his employees was tragically killed in a car accident last night on her way to visit her grandchildren. No other vehicle were involved, so they think she may have fell asleep at the wheel. So prayers for this family please, for their loss at what is supposed to be a joyous time of year!

I am off to pick up a blanket I had taken in for repairs, then to meet hubby for Cmas Eve service at church, so Merry Christmas everyone!

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Glad you got to ride Boocoo! It is in the 50's here, but pouring rain. I am actually out of town at the in-laws for the day.

I am so sorry about your husband's co-worker. What a terrible thing this time of year.

Tracy, thanks for posting that...it made me cry!!

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I have been MIA. Sorry guys. As Im sure all of you are, I have been so busy! But I have been reading about everyone so I am trying to keep up.

Its unseasonably hot here. Last Friday, I rode in a tank top and got sun burned. Then Monday the high was 56 and now today its back to 77.

I spent last night in the ER. I started getting signs of a UTI Sunday morning and I have a Dr appt on this Friday. But yesterday, I started getting the pain in my left hip/side and I went to the chiro and he was like "nothing is out in your hip" but I have felt this "out of alignment" in my left hip for like 2 weeks. Well as the day went on, this pain was getting worse. Randy and I did some shopping and then came home and at 10pm I took some Motrin and tried to sleep. My side was throbbing and I figured it was just from my UTI. I woke up at 12:30am and just couldnt sleep. I felt awful. My side hurt so bad and I knew this was more than just a UTI.

So Randy took me to the ER this morning. Luckily it wasnt too busy and the longest part was waiting for my urine sample results. They gave me some anti nausea meds and torodol, which made me feel wonderful! Turns out, I have a kidney infection along with a lower UTI. So lots of cranberry juice and antibiotics and Loratabs. I got home around 4:30am. I had to call work and tell them I couldnt come in. Mainly from the drugs - I could barely walk!

Im feel much better in the respect of pain today but feel really "out of it". Im sure its all the meds. I have to take Benedryl along with the Loratabs b/c they make me itch, so Im super sleepy.

We are having all of our family over on Sunday for a Christmas dinner. About 23 people I believe. Ham, turkey, etc etc etc. So that will be nice. And I dont have to go back to work until the 5th, which is nice, except I am missing 1.5wks of work - IE - $$$. What are you going to do though? At least I have a job.

I hope you all have a great Christmas and everyone is safe.

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Thanks for the thoughts Beckham. Actually she was one of my husbands employees, not a co-worker. So everything is falling on him, this after he had to lay off 3 people last week. He got all the details finally. Turns out there was another vehicle involved. It happened at 6:30 this a.m. and she was on her way to Eastern New Mexico, not Mexico. The other driver hit her head on and both were killed instantly. He was on heavy, heavy medication, not supposed to even be driving and had his drivers license revoked already, and quite elderly to boot! So two senseless losses of life over all this!

Church was awesome tonight. And instead of doing candles they had glow sticks. That was a lot of fun and the band was awesome!!

I need to go stuff stockings for my boys. Merry Christmas all!

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ack, i'm so far behind again...

MERRY LATE CHRISTMAS!!

So... just a quick update.... Fleck is doing better... still sore in his lower back, even after the chiro, but that did help. He's much more willling to stretch out in the trot, but at the canter, he still hurts. So... we shall see. we are on week 3 now of the marquis and all seems to be going well with that.

Got the Wii Fit for xmas.... so yay for yoga and pilates :) but no time to play yet. work was crazy and is finally a bit slow tonight. And the weather has sucked..rain, rain, and more rain. which is nice...since I can't really ride anyways :)

anyways... hope everyone had a good christmas! Sounds like some shopping spree lightning!!! Fun!~!! and great poem tracy..t hanks for sharing!

have a happy New year!

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Hey gang! I know I haven't been around much lately ... my recovery from the c-section and adjusting to motherhood has resulted in not much extra time. (The baby's asleep right now.)

As noted, I had a c-section and the recovery took forever ... about 6 weeks after, about the time you usually can start doing things again, I was trying to protect my abs while lifting heavy items and ended up pulling all my back muscles instead. It was so bad I was literally in bed for five days (and several more weeks before I trusted those back muscles again.) Then, I came down with the worst ever case of strep throat ... 12 weeks with that one. UGH!

I'm still not feeling 100%, (and close to a year without riding now, I've gained some weight ... yuck!) but at least I feel good enough to get started again. For the last week I've been lunging my 7 yr old TB and the 4 yr old Trak (that needs to be broken in.) If the weather will continue to cooperate more or less (as it has been doing for the last week,) then I think I'll be ready to ride the TB in about another week. I need to take a little more time with the 4 year old ... he still has a lot of "firsts" coming up before I get on him.

My coming 2 year old Trak is due to be gelded soon and he sure is looking GREAT!!!! I'm really pleased with his development. I recently weaned the filly and put her in with the TB -- they're getting along fine. And now perhaps the filly's mother can put some weight on! She's one of those broodmares who gives every calorie to the milk bag. (I sure wish that had been the case for me! I guess I'm an "easy-keeper.")

Let me say this to our younger riders on the forum .... don't rush into motherhood!!! It really does interfere with riding, even if you have a great support system! I know some people have no problem getting right back into full time riding, but believe me, it doesn't work out that way for everyone, regardless of your intentions!

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Good to hear from you again Rio. I was wondering what you've been up to. Doesn't sound fun the least bit. How's your baby? How old now?

That is one long time to deal with strep. I can't even stand 1 week of it + recovery...yuck. I hate to think it lasted 12 weeks! Sounds like a NASTY strain.

Glad to hear you're back in the horse life. This summer I started to get back into horses again. We ended up buying Jaggar, that one horse that I asked you about in March. The owner was finally ready to give him up in July. I've been getting back into the riding mode- working on both of us. He likes to go fast and I'm weak, so it's been a project n' a half. BUT, I think Jaggar and I are FINALLY coming around. I'm gearing for an away clinic/lesson and a schooling dressage show this summer (intro or training?). At any rate, it feels soooo good to get back into the saddle!

Will this be your only baby? I'm already gearing for baby #2, but I realize that that means a good year, if not longer OUT of the saddle. Hubby won't let me ride during my pregnancy... at all. And, I'm destined for another C-section which will call for a long recovery...again. Oh boy.

Anyway, glad to hear from you! Motherhood gets easier... MUCH easier once the little one becomes more independent, as long as they're on some sort of routine.

[Huggy]

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Hey Sylves! Yes, I knew you purchased Jagger, and I have been reading your posts from time to time about your progress with him.

CJ is almost 7 months old. And yes, he's the only one I'm ever going to have. I wasn't a huge fan of having a child in the first place (it was my husband who really wanted one,) and although he's cute and all that, there is NO WAY I'm ever doing this again. Motherhood doesn't seem to be fitting me super well. I mean, I'm sure I'll do an adequate job, but I'm certainly not "into" it.

I haven't really been "out" of horses during this time. I have been giving some lessons, and of course my six horses all need care. And every other day I've been griping to my hubby that the pregnancy, c-section, nursing, and baby-care is keeping me from spending as much time with my equines as I'd like. It's just been so hard to find time, health, and weather that combines at the same time to let me actually work the boys.

Anyway, enough complaining. I'm just pretty down today (and yesterday.)

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Rio- Hi there lady. I missed you and your sage advice.

Sylves-I know I sjould haves this on the other post, but congrats with the improvement with Jag.I am kinda jealous you and Jag have been progressing so nicely. Meanwhile Cheese and sometimes get it and sometimes don't.

Fleack-I am happy to hear Fleck is improving fingers cross the Marquis does the trick.

KrazyTBMare-I hope you are feeling better.

3Day-How are you liking this crazy Pa. weather?

The weather has not been to coopertive lately. So not to much riding for me. Although I was able to get a lesson on my instruster's horse. That horse needs so much contact. My arms felt like jelly after the lesson. The inructer kept saying that is how much contact I need with Cheese. Heck no. Cheese would freak with that much contact. The instucter will change her mind when we get back to working with Cheese and be telling me less contact. She can be a bit scattered brain at times.

On a sad note my friend had to put down her horse yesterday due to colic. She had the mare for 20 years. This was the horse I learned how to ride on. So I kinda had a soft spot for this horse.RIP RHF SilverShadow sks The Beast.

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Happy New Year everyone!!!

Kudos to those of you that have kids and keep up with the horses. I have decided I am far too selfish:( I don't want to give up the riding at all. We have settled into a married life with no kids where we both have hobbies and are able to take off and do fun stuff whenever we want. I think my husband would still like one, but I don't think I am into it at all. My mom kept riding and showing when she was pregnant with my brother and I and he and I were both taken all over to horseshows from a very young age...but I don't think it is that easy anymore!!

Have a great day everyone!

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CSA- I'm so sorry about your friend's horse. Colic is such a nightmere. Chad lost his competition horse to colic as well; it's been 9 years ago, and he's still getting over it.

I accredit my progess with Jaggar to several things:

1. weekly video taping for self assessment (I just prop up the camera on a fence post and tape the entire ride).

2. sharing pictures/video with you guys and getting pointers. I can snap stills from my video camera, so, of course I find the best moments for the stills. Keep in mind, those pictures don't reflect my entire ride.

3. My HORSE'S CHIROPRACTOR! We'd be no-where if it weren't for the adjustment /rebalance!!!

4. finally finding a dressage saddle that fits Jag and me very well. That saddle has been awesome (Ancient Kieffer).

Do you have a video camera? The camera has helped me tremendously.

Rio- I totally hear ya about not getting enough time with the horses. As I wrote in the earlier post, it gets MUCH, MUCH easier after you wean baby from nursing and when your baby is walking. You write that you're down... I was down everyday until I went in for counseling. They put me on Zoloft and told me that I was going through post partum depression. Within a couple of weeks of taking the medicine, I was back to my old self.

You also wrote that you feel like you're not as involved... I can relate. Trust me, you'll become much more involved when CJ gets into the toddler stage. He'll be a joy to watch when he's acting silly. It gets easier, especially with the help of a counselor...

The thought of not being able to ride my horse for an entire year, especially after the progress in just the few short months makes me want to wait on having another baby... but on the flip side, I'm driven to be a mommy to human babies, dogs and horses :-), and I'm not getting any younger - pushing 35... I'm finding silver strands in my hair.... lovely.

Beck, I can't wait to take my daughter to our first horse show... maybe this summer... I think my daughter loves horses, and she's only 18 months. She calls Jaggar's name, she pets him on the face and she loves to sit on his back. He is so gentle with her. I'm crossing my fingers that he turns out to be a good youth horse for her one day (maybe when she's 6 and he's in his 20's...(?)

Fleck, My dad has a Wii- he got the show jumping game for Chad and me to play. It's a great game, although the darn horse always lands on the wrong lead, and it's rather annoying. As I'm playing the game, I get frustrated because how is a horse supposed to preform well jumping tight courses of 4-5 feet when he's on the WRONG lead? Err. At any rate, it takes some time figuring out the stearing and other aids (totally different from riding), but once you get a handle on it, you figure out that subtle "aids" are the key (which is true when riding). It's a cool game; I recommend it for horse people!

How's Fleck doing on the Marquis? Is he more than half way done? How did the other alternative vet appoinments go? I really hope he comes back to his normal self; I miss seeing Fleck and Holly pictures with your bright smile!

Boocoo, That must be really rough for your husband at the workplace. With all of this going on, were you at least able to enjoy your Christmas and New Year?

Do you have children? How old? Are they into horses like you? Do they hang out at the barn?

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Let's hope for good weather, a miracle on Wall Street, healthy ponies, keeping our jobs, and happy times for everyone!

Edited by Sylves

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Rio, great to see you back on the board!! Glad you are feeling better. Got any recent pics of CJ? I know we all saw his new born ones and he is the cutest darn baby! I agree with Sylves, talk to your Dr. about feeling blue! And know this, it does get easier the older the baby gets!! [Huggy]

Thanks Sylves and yes we had a lovely Cmas and New Year. My mom is here and we always have fun. The funeral for my husbands saleslady was this past Tuesday, so the entire sales staff went and they just forwarded the phones for the morning. I think that helped them all to have some closure and knowing she is laid to rest. Very sad. She was only 46 years old!!

As for Motherhood, my son is 14 years old, in the 8th grade and 6' 1" tall!!!! I love him very much, I am very proud of him and I am very blessed to have him. I tell people we did it right the first time, so we didn't have to do it again! Ha ha. Truth is, once was definitely enough. I could not have gone through being pregnant again. However, I had it pretty easy. About the time I hit 6 weeks pregnant, my mare at the time was 9 months pregnant. Good reason to quit riding. We took maternity leave together. When her foal was born I was about 6 months along. I slowly started longing her and my husband worked with the baby for just a few min. each night. Halter breaking, tying, picking up her feet, getting used to being groomed, handled, vaccines, wormed, all that good stuff that babies need to learn. I had my son in October and was back in the saddle 6 weeks later. I went to a gymkhana about another 3 weeks later and won every single event! :happy0203: I had my horses at home, so that made it a lot easier. I would take the baby outside, put him in a playpen and work my horses. One of my dogs would lay next to that play pen and guard that baby with everything he had. If the baby cried, the dog came to get me. Course the play pen was in plain view of the arena, but he came and got my anyway. As my son got older I had my husband build a play yard out back with in a good view of the arena, where I could keep an eye on my son. He would play happily out there while I worked with my horses. On the weekends when my husband was home, I went for trail rides or to gymkhanas. I was very fortunate that my son was such a little angel and my husband was so supportive and they both still are. They go to shows with me now and help me groom, muck stalls, shine my boots, etc.... I am fortunate that my son is very smart, does great in school and will go far in life. He is really a true blessing. I know it is not this easy for everyone and I know a lot of women that have chosen not to have children because of their love for their horses. Thank goodness we live in a country where we are free to choose and we all choose what works best for us!!!

I am going to finally take Beau on a trail ride in a state park on Sunday. I haven't gone "real" trail riding in a few years so I am really looking forward to it.

I got my USDF regional qualifying certificate in the mail today and should get my USDF Rider Performance Training level certificate any day now and a patch!!

Happy New Year to all of you!

Edited by Boocoo

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I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and New Year!

Tracy, what a beautiful post, and so true. Thanks for sharing.

Boocoo, I'm glad you had a lovely ride, but what a horrible thing to happen at any time, but especially around the holidays, and in such terrible circumstances.

Shantel, eek I'm sorry you had an unexpected trip to the ER, I hope you feel better soon!

Holly, Oooooh, Wii Fit, lots of people got Wii's this year, I'm so jealous! I'm glad Fleck is doing better, and I hope he continues in that fashion!

RTA, oh dang! sounds like you've had a bit of a rough time. I'm glad you're feeling good enough to get started again though

Csa, That's so sad about your friend's mare, it's always hard to do. Hopefulyl you'll get some more riding time soon!

Nothing much going on here, I can't wait to ride again, but I've been sooo busy between work and festivities!

Hope everyone has a great day/night/whatever time it is there!

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Boocoo...your regional certificate came today??!! I have to go get the mail:-) I am a certificate junky! I have the rider's ones at training and first and am close to second level. Beckham only needs a few more scores for his certificate of performance at training level. All this stuff keeps me happy until I feel like I am truely moving forward on my bronze:-) I hope you enjoy your trail ride! I wish it was Summer...

As it is, the weather has been pretty nice here and I have been riding a lot...more then usual for this time of year! Shelby goes to the trainer's in 2 weeks and she has some nice clinics lined up; so I will be very busy.

I start back to school on Monday to get my degree as a veterinary technician. I feel like, after 2 other degrees, I finally know what I want to be when I grow up! HAHAHA! It just means more school...but that's okay, I am kind of a geek and enjoy school!

I hope everyone's new year is getting off to a great start and everyone is starting to think about their goals for this year!!

Okay, sending DH to get the mail...

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Thanks for the kind words everyone! Boocoo, how in the world did you manage to put your baby in a playpen and still get anything done? For the first five months or so, I could barely do the basic chores if the baby was with me, much less any work for the horses. Now it is a little better, but I still can't get anything done if there isn't someone else with me to watch over the little tyke. A friend's daughter comes out sometimes and that works out pretty well. The girl is a little too young to be a true babysitter, but she loves CJ and is old enough to keep him happy and entertained as long as I'm somewhere near in case she feels she can't handle something.

Who can I send a PM to in order to get a picture or two posted?

As for feeling blue, I don't have true PPD. I did talk to a specialist about it. She said I'm fine, just overwhelmed. I simply am not getting my therapy (riding!) It will get better soon.

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Congrats on your achievemnts Beckham. Did your regional cert. come? I am still waiting for my Training level performance Cert. to arrive in the mail.

Rio, my son was just such an easy baby! I could put him in his play pen with books and toys and he would play happily by himself for hours. Or outside in his fenced in little play yard whilst I worked with my horses and he would play happily on his own. He was never colicky, nor did he cry a lot. If he cried there was usually a good reason why! He prefers to be on his own or hang out with his folks, even now. I will say to him, would you like to invite some friends over? Sometimes he will, or go to their houses, but mostly he just wants to be at home and read, write novels, play on his computer or his playstation 3 thing. He loves to hike, kayak, rock climb and mtn. bike as well and likes to do all of that with is folks, even now at the age of 14. He is an old soul really!! He has always gotten really good grades and gets highly irritated with other kids that disrupt the class, hence his learning. He is big enough that they all listen to him if he tells them to hush up! [ROTFL] I think he will end up writing novels and teaching english! His vocabulary blows me away! He has a senior in college level of reading as of now! His english class is an advanced class and his teacher tells me he has a hard time keeping up with him! [shocked] He truly wants to be a published author, so I hope and pray it will happen for him! I began reading to him when he was still in the womb! I am also on the strict side and don't put up with any nonsense. When he was a baby I simply told him, because I am the Mom and I said so. That's all I ever needed to say. Course my tone of voice spoke volumes. I also instilled manners into him as a baby, before he even knew what please and thank you meant and he better use his manners, even now. Nothing irritates me more than a child with no manners cause that's the parents fault! If I said to him he needed to be quiet cause I am on the phone or working on something and he wasn't quiet, there were consequences later and I usually did not have that problem again. I certainly never beat him or abused him in any way, don't get the wrong idea, I was just and still am, very firm, consistent and my expectations are made very clear, no questions asked! He even told me one time in the airport as we watched a young mother struggle with 3 very rude, spoilt children, "mom, I'm sure glad you raised me the way you did" as he shook his head at those 3 children. He was 9 at the time!!! He is very good with small, young children also. So incredibly patient and good at entertaining them. I always get compliments on my son, how well behaved, mannerly and smart he is!! So I take that as a huge compliment and my husband as well, although I am the disciplinarian. My husband is like having another kid! [ROTFL]

I have just written a book about my son! Wow!

Did not get to go on my trail ride today. It turned bitterly cold. Hope it warms back up by mid week. I need to ride a couple of days. I am going to a clinic next weekend and riding Beau in it! Woohoo! I can't wait.

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Boocoo, I am so concerned that I won't be a good enough discplinarian. I also appriciate well behaved kids, but for some reason I am the biggest push over. Well, actually I've gotten better in recent years, but still the kids get away with murder sometimes when I'm teaching...

Please give an example of the type of logical consequence you would give, say if your child wasn't quiet while you were on the phone.

With my 18 month old, I'll firmly tell her to clean up the mess she makes, especially when she goes to throwing food or toys. I'll remove the food or toy, and I'll set her where the mess is, and I say firmly, "Shannon, pick it up now. Put them here. Go get that one. Now Shannon." I'd end it with ,"We don't throw food." Then, I'd give her a hug and a kiss, and redirect her to something else. I try to stay active with her so that boredom doesn't take over...

When Shannon gets to hitting my face (tapping gently turns into a hard slam of the hand onto my cheek), I'll firmly grasp her hand and say, "No hitting. Give kisses."

She's been a pretty easy baby, but going to church is a challenge and a half. We don't have a staffed nursery at church; all of the family's kids sit through the hour long services. It's difficult for her to sit still for so long. I have large crayons, paper, a dress up baby doll, books, water in a sippy and a bowl of cheerios in my "church diaper bag." We don't overwhelm her with too much; she only gets one toy at a time. Sometimes we have to leave our pew to go running after her. Sometimes she'll blurt out during the sermon or prayers. I know this is typical toddler behavior, but it just frustrates me, especially when I know that there are other families who are able to control their young children better than Chad and me. They'll have three young children sitting intently, and my little girl is trying to carry on a conversation with the people behind us... I sometimes have to hold back my giggles; she just cracks me up, but I know that when she sees me giggle, it encourages the behavior.... I must restrain the laughing!

You must be SO proud of your son! I totally look up to you; you have raised him well.

Hey, Tracy, how is your boarding situation going?

Rio, I'm glad that you had yourself checked out for PPD. I recall you saying that your vet/trainer/? was a doula? Has she been of any help with this?

Rio, when I ride, I have to have a teenager babysit Shannon. I've tried the playyard (the six panel play pen) outside the field where I ride, and it was really difficult for me. She'd cry when I got more than 20 meters away. I felt guilty. The one time I tried it, I think Shannon let me ride without her crying for about 10 minutes... It was a lot of work for that short ride. ON top of that, Mr. Jaggar was being a pain. I think it was me being tense because of the crying, etc that was the problem. At any rate, I just have the teenager watch Shannon now if I want to ride. When the hubby is home before dark and when he's not in the fields for planting/harvest, he'll watch her. I hope that when she gets older... she'll join me in the field with her own little pony... <sigh>

Edited by Sylves

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Ok wow all this talk of kids and how you manage it all makes me want to hide in a hole. Being that of 23...I really haven't thought too much of kids. Except NO way. Now it makes not want to think of them at all. The responsibility is quite scarey. Or at this point in my life I am like that. Way too much ahead for me to do and finishing my college education is a definate must. But is certainly aweing. My trainer and his wife have 2 kids and manage to teach, train, and show internationally and still have family time. Very inspiring.

It sounds like everyone had a great Holiday and a nice New Year. Hopefully this one will better in the long run.

Congrats on your baby Rio! Wish I could give you some words of wisdom, but I am lacking in the kid department. But it sounds like things are going fairly well for you and I'm sure the equines will be 100% back in your life as you will figure out to balance the baby and the horses out.

Boocoo- Sounds like you have a fabulous son! Is he still taking fencing lessons????

Ok Regional qualifying certificate? Elaborate? Wonder if I will get one? hehe.

csa- ugh crazy PA! I don't even know what to think. It needs to be consistent! Hope all is well for you! PS have you ever heard of Patti Thompson?

Beckham- haha I'm w/ you in the rider certification. I have Training through 1st level. As well has having the 2nd level portion of my Bronze medal done. It will be awhile till I can complete that though. hehe. Need to have Scotch solid 3rd first. Wow you already have 2 degrees?! In what? Good luck w/ your VT!

Holly- Still keeping my fingers crossed for Fleck! How is he doing? And sweet you got a Wii fit! I just got the Wii for Christmas!

LTS- Been able to ride much? How is Lightning doing?

YaY. Holidays are finally over. This is my last week off before the dreaded semester starts back up. And to make this week worse, which really should be a great one, Scotch is dead lame in the trot. We seem to like to start off the year w/ being unsound. Such a bummer as he was going fantastic in December. Especially coming off of our Hassler high. Called the vet today to see if he can get Scotch in this week. Keep your fingers crossed that he can!

Have a great day!

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Boocoo-- I would also like to know more about the "natural consequence" theory. I started reading a book on the subject, and I thought that, in general, it made good sense. But at times I thought the author was full of it. Some of the "natural consequences" the author used as an example were not so much "natural consequences" as they were punishment, plain and simple. Not necessarily a spanking or anything, but still punishment. Not that I have a problem with the idea of punishment, but I do have an issue with someone calling it the "natural consequence" of something.

For example, if a child throws food on the floor, what are the natural consequences? In my house, the dog gets to eat it. So, what has the child learned? As near as I can tell, the child learns nothing that will stop him from throwing food on the floor.

If you tell the child, "if you throw food on the floor, first, your food will be taken away since you obviously don't want it, and then you will clean the floor," and then if the child throws food anyway and you enforce your statement (that is, take away the rest of the food and then make the child clean the floor,) that is a CONSEQUENCE, and a fair one since you stated what would happen. But it's not a NATURAL consequence. And if the child doesn't want to clean the floor you have a whole other issue to deal with.

Can you help me out with this? I'm just not getting it. Perhaps my definition of "natural" consequence is wrong.

Nothing new to report at this time!

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I'm thinking "natural consequence" is something that happens naturally as a result of the behavior, such as, if you run on ice, you're most likely going to fall down.

What's more important than a "natural" consequence is a "logical" consequence. A logical consequence is directly related to the behavior and out come. I have a difficult time, sometimes, coming up with a logcial consequence for everything.

I know that the key is really to be consistant with your rules and consequences, stick to a routine for everything, don't lose your cool, redirect ASAP and keep the child active. My problem is remaining consistant with my rules and consequences. It's easier with my child than it is with my students.

As I write this, I realize that my little girl is entering the terrible twos.... Here we go!

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Do any of you work with MS Access? I'm trying to design a database, build macros, etc, and I'm struggling big time with the syntax. Anyone? Please?

Edited by Sylves

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