Sunday, February 13, 2011

It's a Girl!

Okay... I am a lame blogger. What can I say? It's a time thing. 

I may be late in announcing this but it's not because I'm not thrilled to the limit. We've got a new grandbaby. Eloise Anne was born on January 23rd... right while the National Anthem was being played prior to kick-off of the Steelers playoff game. Needless to say, we missed the kickoff! LOL!

El is the sweetest little thing. The fact that our next youngest "grand" turned 5 in December amplifies how tiny she is, even though she was over 7 lbs. at birth. What a joy to snuggle her wee, warm body!  Mom, dad, and baby are all adjusting to living together... Anyone who has had a baby added to their twosome will understand that it's not so easy. It takes a lot of readjusting to find the right balance so everything jives. But, when you find it, it's a wonderful feeling. You begin to wonder how you ever survived without the baby in your lives! Of course, then you blink and wonder how the baby got so big! I pray that both of my daughters and their families take the time to enjoy every day, ever moment. Life moves at a rapid pace, and as the one country song that charted just a bit ago, "Your gonna miss this some day!" It almost seems as though even the tough times are remembered with fondness. The crises of one day seem like no big deal just a bit later in time.

Changing subjects... I have been contemplating purchasing a gaited horse. I've never ridden one but I've heard that they are so smooth to ride. Sounds nice. Of course, I would have to find a new home for one of my current horses, either Coby or Willy. Coby would be the sensible choice since he would make a great starter horse for someone. As a mater of fact, I have 2 friends who would take him in a heartbeat, one of whom was nearly in tears thinking Coby would go to anyone other than her. I don't know. I need to think on the whole idea a lot more and do some praying before I make such a big decision.

I can't wait until the winder breaks and I can begin riding again. That means the expense of new shoes and lots of grooming as the boys shed out. But, I seem to enjoy riding more and more each riding season. I love long, leisurely rides with friends. I am also hoping that one or more of the grandkids decides to ride a bit more this year and accompanies me on the trail. That would be awesome!

Well, I hope you have a wonderful day. I'll have to bring some photos into this computer so I can share pics of El and also of other important things in my life. All of my photos are on my other computer at the office...


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Another "Little" on the Way!

I just have to share my joy with everyone. Anyone who knows me knows I am totally absorbed in my grandchildren! I love them to distraction and try to spend as much time as possible with them. I never had that opportunity as a child, my grandparents all living far enough away that all we had were occasional family visits. I think a grandparent can be an amazing part of a child's healthy upbringing and I'm so blessed to be in the position to enjoy them to the degree I do.

That being said, you'll easily understand why my heart is overflowing at the prospect of enjoying that same relationship with a new grandchild! Our younger daughter, Devon, and her husband, Cory, are expecting their first child! Devon just had her initial ultrasound this morning and confirmed her due date to be January 31, 2011. The baby is doing fine, with a heartbeat of 152.

January seems so far away and I certainly don't wish for time to pass any more rapidly than it already seems to! But, I'm eager to snuggle the new "little"... It will be a bright spot during the time when winter seems to drag...

Thank you, Lord, for the blessing of grandchildren!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

One of My Dreams Coming True...

YES!! After purchasing a yearling pony 8 years ago, my desire was to involve my grandkid(s) in my love of horses and riding. Well, over the years the three "grands" I have have definitely developed an interest in "my boys" but, besides led pony rides, none of them had actually gone riding with me by themselves.

I decided to try to remedy this by taking Jasper, my pony, to a trainer last fall. He did very well and the kids actually got to ride him while he was in training. I was pumped! Then I got Jasper back home and tried to throw a grandkid up on him and it was a semi-disaster! Jasper was more interested in eating the green grass (which wasn't an option in the dirt training area while he was "in school") and the kids couldn't keep his head up. I was frustrated and disappointed, needless to say. It was pretty much the end of the season and so everything got put on hold until spring broke this year.

God heard my prayers... I ran into a young woman who I felt would be the right person to work with Xavier (who had agreed to take lessons). The trainer, Chelsea, has been amazing! Not only is she a very patient teacher, she's an enjoyable person to be around as well. Xavier has had 4 or 5 lessons to date (one a week) and he's been doing great! He gains confidence with every lesson, which is the best witness to Chelsea's ability.

Xavier and I actually went on a trail ride together, albeit a short one. He got tossed before we left the driveway, but he was brave and climbed back on. He did amazingly well and Jasper listened to X's commands. I'm looking forward to our next opportunity to ride together!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Talk about a good time...! We ended up going down to Harrisburg a day early because they were calling for a significant snow storm (which never materialized!). The hotel was wonderful. We had a suite and Margie got it at an amazing price. Little did we know that they put out a picnic dinner buffet as well as a really yummy breakfast buffet. We took advantage of it, believe me!

The Expo itself was a good time and I felt that what I learned through the clinics and demonstrations made it well worthwhile. Add to that the odds and ends I purchased from vendors there and the fun it was browsing through all that stuff and I was pretty satisfied by the whole getaway.

I could go on and on about so many funny things that happened while we were there. I think if we had stayed any longer at the hotel, they would've begun to think we were owners... or at least staff! LOL! We made friends with everyone from staff to other guests. So... they were either really sad to see us leaving or did a happy dance once the doors closed behind us! We're hoping we can stay there again next year - but only if we get another good deal!

We stopped in State College and had supper at Olive Garden. It was good, as usual, but we were sooooo tired! Margie admitted to me later that she was ready to nod off as she was driving. I TOLD her to let me know if she needed me to drive... goofball!

Wish I could take more time and elaborate about all this. We really did have a good time... But, time is the issue and this is about all I can invest this afternoon!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Expo Bound

So, we're here in Harrisburg just waiting for the doors to open for the Horse Expo. It's supposed to start at noon today and we're right next door so we can just walk on over when we're ready.

We've been having so much fun here at the hotel. They probably wish we'd leave. LOL! Actually, though, we just talk with everyone (who will listen, that is!) and it's been enjoyable. It'd be great if we could stay here again next year since we know it's so nice but I don't know if they'll give us such a good price as we've gotten this year. And as expensive as their regular rates are, we'd never want to pay those!

So, I'm just killing time... looking at horse web sites and wishing I had more acreage and money so I could buy more horses. I know... I only have one butt so I can only ride one horse at a time but they're so beautiful. There are so many amazing breeds and they all have their fine points. God surely done good when he created horses!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Where have I been?

Oh my goodness! Can we say "absent"? Guess I've been pretty lax in keeping this blog up. I just thought about it and decided I'm going to do better. At least my intentions lean that way!

Wow! So much has happened between my last post and now... No way can I cover it all! So, I guess I'll just go from here.

Here is a picture of my new horse. I still have Coby and Jasper but I was able to get another horse as well. This makes it great because then I can have folks come over and go riding with me! My niece, Molly, has been really enjoying Coby and we rode quite a bit before it got really cold. This photo is my sister, Ginny, on her first horseback riding experience in years and years. I think she sat up on my first Quarter Horse years back but didn't really ride him. She did great on our ride! I think she had fun, too. I'll get her riding again this spring or summer, I'm sure.

Now as you look at Willy (my new horse's name), remember that he is starting to "fur up" for winter here so he doesn't look as pretty as he really is. He is a very pretty bay and just a bit bigger than Coby and built just a bit more athletically. He can cop an attitude but generally, he's pretty well behaved. I bought him as a 4-year-old and wasn't expecting him to be so laid back. I need to work with him to pick up speed on his walk but he's a good boy. I took him on a wagon train outing 2 days after I brought him home. He did so well!

Coby and Jasper are both doing great. They are furry bears right now as well. Some day it'll warm up and they'll start shedding out. They look so pretty once they're sleek again!

This Thursday and Friday a friend of mine (Margie), Molly, and I are heading to Harrisburg to the Horse World Expo. I am really looking forward to it! Last year it psyched me up so much I could hardly wait for the weather to break so I could get back to riding. There are tons of vendors, trainers doing demonstrations, clinics, seminars, etc. The Expo runs through Sunday but we think the first 2 days are the absolute best since attendance is low. By Saturday, the place is a mob scene and I hate the crowds and chaos!

I'll fill you in on the experience when I get back. If you're not into horses, it'll probably be a bore, though!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Jasper's an "A" Student!

So... I finally found just the right place for Jasper to "go to school"! My brother helped me haul him up to a trainer in Centerville, about an hour and a half ride. He's been at Rose Haven Quarter Horses for a week now and last evening Jaxson, Madelyn and I went up for a visit, a requirement that Rose Haven has when agreeing to work with your horse. I've been a bit nervous that he would be a drop-out, expelled or in constant time-outs. I mean, think about it, I buy Jasper as a yearling and he's now 8 years old. All that's been asked of him is an occasional pony ride at a church or birthday party. Those rides are all done by leading him around with a lead rope. Other than those small events, Jasper has just been treated almost like a big dog. Fussed over, loved up, and fed! Suddenly, Jasper's been given a job...

Well, I have to tell you, I was so thrilled to see Ricky, the trainer, tack him up (getting him to take the bit is an area he needs worked on with) and jump on. Fortunately, Ricky's not a big guy and so he's able to work directly with Jasper... right from his back. He put Jasper through the works; walking, stopping, standing, going around obstacles, backing up... I was amazed at Jasper's progress in just one week's time.

In the meantime, Jaxson decided that there would be NO way he was going to ride Jasper and so he climbed back into the car and locked all 4 doors. That's right... and the keys were inside. I finally convinced him that no one was going to make him ride if he didn't want to and he emerged although he clung to me like manure clings to your boots!

Madelyn had agreed to climb up on Jasper even though I could tell she was very hesitant. So, after Ricky had shown me what Jasper had learned, he changed saddles and adjusted the stirrups so that Maddy could sit on him comfortably. That's when I noticed that Madelyn
had on clunky flip flops... NOT the proper footwear for riding, that's for sure! The flip flops made it nearly impossible for her to use her heels to urge Jasper to move. So, I encouraged her to just kick them off and go barefoot. I wouldn't normally suggest that but since they were in a controlled environment, I figured it'd be okay.

Okay... here's the exciting part... After Ricky led Madelyn around for a wee bit, he took her into a small round pen and let her get the hang of the reins herself. Before too long, Maddy was back out of the pen and riding all by herself in the larger paddock area. I can't tell you how big my smile was but I know I probably looked like a total goober, grinning from ear to ear!

Jaxson also decided that he wanted to ride. Yep... that's right! The little guy who had locked himself in the car now wanted to climb aboard the pony! He got to the point of begging and so we threw him up and Ricky led him around. Jaxson was feeling pretty good about it all even though we wouldn't let him go totally on his own. He's just not quite big enough to handle Jasper, especially at this point of his training.

We ended up having Madelyn get back on, after much pleading on her part. She actually kicked him up into a trot a couple of times! I literally had to be stern to make her get off when it was time to go. She's got the horse bug for sure and I can hardly wait until Jasper gets farther along in his training so that he's ready to come home and take Madelyn trail riding with me! That's my goal!

Xavier wants to go next time so it seems like next week I'll have 3 tag-alongs! But, it's a sweet feeling for me. This is what I've been hoping for ever since Maddy was wee. Ricky and Connie, his wife, were teasing me that I'll be buying more ponies before I know it because they'll all want to ride! Well, I don't have room for more but if I could, I would!! LOL!!!

I can hardly wait to see how Jasper does after another full week at Rose Haven!!!