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New Year…New….

I really don’t care much for the New year, new me phrase! I like me the way I am! Many people think of the new year as an opportunity to change themselves. I do it a little different! I plan to grow! Not change but grow! Whether that be in mind, spirit or body, I shall move forward! I would like to learn more about horses and how they work. In fact, I think I will find some cattle and give sorting a try! I am still going to barrel race! No doubt about that! But I have two cowy geldings that would be a blast to just work some cattle and enjoy learning more about how they work! I used to team pen back in the day! I was pretty darn good at it too! It was something I did to keep my barrel horse from being bored! Splash and Lynx both really love cows! So that is my goal this year. Lets learn something new!

Another thing I am super excited about is Summit! This product has changed my horse and dog management! My vet was shocked at how fluid my horses are moving! My 13 year old red heeler is actually playing with her siblings! She found a new lease on life! She has terrible hip dysplasia! She was beginning to get a little depressed last summer. I started her on Summit and WOW. She is jumping and running around like a pup! My retired gelding, Gabe, is back to giving lessons! He was 100% lame before starting on Summit. Now he is the horse I put the scared kids on to build their confidence! Heck, I even get on him and ride him around. He has also found a new lease on life at age 20! Splash and Lynx are rockin’ out on it as well! Last month they announced the new human product called Pure C4S. I took my loading dose and have taken one of my maintenance doses. My only complaint is that I feel good and too more than what I should, being out of shape and such! One thing I know about this product is that the longer you take it, the better you feel! My horses and dogs are proof of that! I would love for you to try it too! Check it out at www.summitjp.com/resbarrelracing

Watch out world! With my horses feeling like Rockstars on Tour and my body healing, we are going to blow the doors off!!! What doors? Not sure. But we will find doors to open!

My other goal or something I would like to grow….is my Faith. My Faith in the Lord and how he will provide! I think we all are befuddled by the state of our country right now. I have watched in wonder at the world crumbling around us. At the same time, God has blessed my home! I have gained more students! I have grown my company! My husband still has a good job! My son is doing great at his new school! RES is doing good! Then I go outside of my bubble and see all the masks being worn. All of the protests. All of the “madness” and all I can think is…when will this calm down?? In God’s time. That is when. I need to quit questioning HIS time. I need to pray more. I need to spread HIS LOVE more. I need to look at ways I can help MORE. I am not much for cold weather so I will do this from afar for the moment! But soon….soon I will be back out in the world spreading HIS LOVE!

With this post I leave you with one more thing. Stop and count your blessings! Count your loved ones twice!

Reasons

When it comes to horses, in any discipline, we all have our way of doing things. A lot of the things we do are because someone else told us to do it THAT way. Think about it. Who up and decided that we should always lead, saddle and mount from the left side of the horse? If I had to guess, it was a right handed person! If you are leading on the left side of the horse, your right arm is your strongest, so that would make it easier to control the horse. Makes sense. Saddling from the right side is a different perspective . Reflect back to when men carried swords. They carried them on the left side to make them easy to draw from the scabbard once mounted. Can you imagine swinging your leg over a horse that had a steel sword strapped to it? Makes sense for back in the day!

So now I wonder why we mount from the left in modern day. It’s the side that the latigo and girth meet up to tighten a western saddle. English saddles, it’s the side the elastic straps are located (on my English saddle) so I assume it’s easier to re-adjust when you put your foot in the stirrup to get one and feel that your saddle is loose. Makes sense!

With all this being said, why do we do it every single time? Horses are used to routine. Their brains prefer this, that and there. I know mine do! However, I have been in many situations where I had to mount or dismount on the right side. I’m so glad that we had already worked on that move because I was in a bad bind! I highly recommend that you practice mounting, saddling and leading your horse from both sides. One day you will be in a situation that you have no other choice. We do things out of habit and perhaps there was a real strong reason for it, but I don’t often carry my sword anymore!

It has been one month…

It has been one month since I was kicked in the chest. One month since a random hoof flew at me and into my chest. One month since I decided to turn my horse out, forgot to let the horse out of the other paddock and walked forward vs turning around and going back to the gate….and I got kicked in the chest. My oh my how one blink can alter your reality.

This was an average morning. I went to turn horses out. I didn’t let the one horse that sleeps in the paddock, that is located inside the back pasture , out before letting Lynx loose for the day. A simple thing. So I took the halter off Lynx, put it on my shoulder and stepped forward. I woke up 15’ from where I was standing. It hurt. I could not breathe. I did manage to get up and let that horse out before the ambulance arrived. I spent four days in the hospital and did not break anything. Blunt force trauma to my chest wall.

What I have learned since this experience? A lot! I learned that the world keeps turning. I learned that my child still had baseball. Dinner still needed to be cooked. Horses still needed to be fed. I also learned that my 42 year old body takes longer to heal! I learned that I have limits.

On my 14 year wedding anniversary, September 29th, my son got sick. Of course we got tested and come to find out it was the vid. My son was sick for maybe 24-36 hours. He is 100% now! I tested positive but do not have any symptoms aside from my “I just got kicked in the chest by a horse” symptoms. All I want to do is ride! But yet….I got kicked in the chest by a horse. Sigh.

So what does one do when we are in quarantine and healing from trauma? I’m not 💯 great but I am also way past the sleeping all day phase! I cleaned saddles. I cook dinner. I do laundry. Gah the laundry! What do we do? Watch tv. That’s it! So please go ride your horses and breathe in the ragweed air! Enjoy the little cool front that might make your steed a little fresh! Think of me while you glide along on that horse of yours! I can’t wait to ride again! But…I will! Why? Because “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” does not apply to people over 40! 😐✌🏻

Barrel Racing…

I have not really ever hauled a Horsw to the race without one for myself to ride. However, I did just that this weekend! One of my students, Maggie, went to her first big race! The whole weekend was totally different for me!

First, I will say that this kiddo is almost 12. She is a quick learner and such a positive kid! I’d like to think that I had a hand in that attitude but I’m going to give all the credit to her parents! She is a Boy Scout, (yes, Boy Scout), volleyball player, rides English and rides western! But… with all that going on, she made the decisions on what to do. Her parents encourage her to figure out her own path then help her get to where she needs to be to follow said paths! She is a middle child of 3. Not once have I ever seen this child throw her sucker in the dirt!!! Never! Not a single time!

To start off, she has gone to some playdays, attended several of my races to watch and always ends up on a horse. She has fallen off. She has gotten back on. She has made mistakes but corrected them and she ALWAYS loves on the horse she is riding!!! ALWAYS! This makes the coach a happy coach! (Me) I applaud her efforts every single time she rides yet she doesn’t need that constant pat on the back! But she will smile and love that horse like they won a million bucks! Man oh man! You just don’t get that sort of competitive yet loving nature all the time! This is why I had zero negative thoughts about loading up and heading out to a weekend race for this kiddo!!! I knew, no matter the outcome, she would come out with a smile, learn from the experience and get ready for next time! And she did! First run was a little sketchy. She did get a no time due to just having a little too much control on the seasoned 19 year old Splash. We made some adjustments and had them ride bareback late that night. Her comeback the next day was amazing! And that is why I coach! I love seeing them recognize the issue, putting the changes into action and seeing them progress!

As for me, y’all, I have only run my horse maybe 4 times in 2021. It’s been a rough year! I’m finally starting to heal and ready to get my horse in shape. It’s an odd feeling. Going to a race without my mount. I had so many friendly faces ask me if I’m ever going to come out of retirement. Last time I ran was spring break? I think? It doesn’t seem so long ago! I was simply shocked that so many thought I hung up my Spurs! I didn’t. I just had a lot of jaw dropping injuries (not all horse related but barn related) and just need some time to heal! 💪🏻 I need to get back at it! So thank you to all my well wishers. Is that a word? I will be back on my pint soon! Lynx was plum pissed when I loaded up his older brother and left for the weekend! He is still pouting!

So here is three cheers to barrel racing! To taking the time to heal myself so I can be the best rider for my main mount! Honestly, right now, I am enjoying coaching and watching my students grow and thrive through the love of horses! Rock on kids! This week, I may even coach from the saddle! 😜