Sunday, November 8, 2009

Clean Boy Parts....

Remember my last blog? Snow in October? Well, fast forward to today. Sunday, November 8th. It was 70 degrees. Sunny. Nice warm southernly breeze. Same as yesterday. September in November? Why not? We had December in October.

Since it was a beautiful day, and Ollie has been rubbing his gorgeous tail off by molesting his feed bucket, I decided today was the day to clean his Boy Parts. Yes. His Boy Parts. And yes, you do have to do that. How else do they get clean? He does not have opposable thumbs. Or fingers for that matter. And trust me, his boy parts get nasty, dirty, smelly, grungy, argh! Just gross.

So I loaded up with KY Jelly. Okay, it was the Shopko brand, but I honestly think The Boy didn't really care. That left over glove from my hair coloring (I only use one) and I got The Girl to give me an old pair of knee socks that she no longer wears, since I guess knee socks are no longer cool.
I set to work. Olliver kept giving this look. You know the look. Your significant other may have given it to you at some point in your relationship. That "what in the hell do you think you are doing down there." Followed by the, " step away from Mr. Winkie and I will forget you were down there" look. Followed by the, "Oh my, Mommy...whatever it is you are doing, it's ALL GOOD!"... I felt like I was molesting my son. He got the cross-eyed, lop-eared, goofy grin look. Okay....I think Mr. Winkie is clean and my mission is complete.

Anyway, I'm SOOOOOOOOOOOO glad that this is a twice-a-year job. Not a weekly, monthly or even quarterly task. While far from being the worst thing I've ever done....well, let's just say there are other things I'd like to spend my time with The Boy doing.

And no, there are no pictures of my arm up to my elbow in Olliver's nether regions. Sorry to disappoint.

Saturday, October 24, 2009 October???

Okay. I think it has already been established, but I. Hate. Winter. I hate it. I hate being cold. I hate being housebound. I hate waking up in the dark, driving to work in the dark, and coming home from work in the dark. It severely limits my barn time. I have to put the fishing gear away. I get cranky (just ask the girls at work). I hate to whine about stuff that I have no control over, and do choose to live in Minnesota, the god forsaken country of 5 months of winter...but seriously....

As much as I hate winter - I love fall. Crisp days. Sweatshirt weather. Pretty trees and trout streams. Trail rides where the ponies don't get hot, sweaty and lazy.

October usually means the good stuff. Fishing. Trail rides. Snuggly sweatshirts and hot toddies in the evenings. Apples.

This was scene from my front door yesterday afternoon:

Uh huh. Yup. That would snow. On October 23rd. Almost 4 inches of the white crap by the time it was done snowing last night. It is all melting today. Sun is shining today. Not that it makes me feel any better. 'Cuz it's just a bitch slap of reality from Mother Nature that I really don't need right now. I've got enough other crap going on in my life - between TWFMC shtuff and ex-asshat sperm donor harrassing my daughter, I just didn't need a freakin' October blizzard.

Breathing deep....putting on boots...heading to The Barn...


Monday, October 5, 2009

Christmas in October....

Monday Night Football...

I love it.

And when it's Vikings vs. Packers on Monday Night Football, it's almost like Christmas for me.

Please, please, please let the Vikings win. It's almost halftime and the score is tied...

I love my Vikings...

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Sunday, Perfect Sunday...

I spent 4 hours at The Barn today. Perfect day. The Boy was perfect. Completely, absolutely perfect. Well, except for the session with the spray bottle, but everyone can have bad moments.

Olliver was WAY OUT BACK in the pasture. Which meant I had to hike halfway out to get him. Once he can see/hear me, he'll come right in, but with the wind and traffic, he can't hear me when he's WAY OUT BACK. He was taking his sweet old time coming though, so I told him to pick it up and turned around and started walking back in. Next thing I knew - hoofbeats....he was running to catch up with. Good Boy, Olliver.

Olliver worked today. I haven't been able to really work with him in several weeks. We have had small groundwork ("good boy") lessons...but no lunging or anything. Today, he got the whole shebang. I told him during his prework groom that he was gonna work today. I think he knew what I meant, cuz he got real serious. He likes to work.

We started out with some groundwork....flexing, backing, moving fronts and backs....just to loosen up and get focused. Then on went the lunge line. He was perfect. He worked completely off of verbal commands. Well, except for "whoa". He understands "whoa". Just not a lunge line. It's way too much fun to keep going in a circle around Mom to stop. When he does "whoa" - he thinks that means it's time to come to me for love. We're working on it. I was just really pleased that he actually walked on verbal command and transitioned between walk and trot on verbal command. Lunging time is short. As much as he loves it.....he's got soft bones and growing joints. No more than 5 minutes in each direction for my Boy.

Then I got out the spray bottle. That evil, horse-eating monster. Not fun. He was sure that thing was going to get freaked out as he gets by the spray bottle - jumping around, running around me in circles, impersonating Lippizzaner Stallions, he never runs me over, bumps into me or anything. He's oh so careful not to hurt his Mom. Good Boy, Olliver.

I threw his saddle pad all over him....very little reaction. Much, much better than the last time. (YEA!!!!)

After that it was time for fun. I always end work sessions on a good note. I got out his big rubber ball...and the barrels....and we ran around them....he admired himself in the mirrors....he got to run, and buck and fart. Then he pooped. Poor Olliver. He hates to poop inside. He doesn't even poop in his "house" (his run in shelter in his pasture). He hates to be dirty (only rolls in his sand pit). He's very fastidious. Almost snobby about being clean. And he pooped inside. He got the most disgusted look on his face. I got the fork and cleaned up....and followed me around and then trotted off happy as could be once the poop was gone. An odd one, my Boy is.

Once the work and play were done and he had a second grooming, I hand walked/grazed him around the lanes between the pastures. Just quiet bonding with The Boy. Ahhhhhh.....perfect - so perfect that I will not think about my return to TWFMC in the morning...

Saturday, October 3, 2009

October? No way!

It's October? Seriously? Not possible. What happened to summer? Where did it go? Have I seriously not blogged since May? I really suck at this blogging thing...

Summer was okay. Just okay. Work was insane. The economy, along with the healthcare "crisis" created by the Nobama administration has made my life at TWFMC a living hell. Every free moment I have is spent either at The Barn or fishing. But now that fall has set in, I'm starting to wonder how I'm going to keep my sanity. Thank God for The Barn. With its indoor arena. I can work with The Boy as much as I want to (or the roads are clear enough for me to get out there)...

The Boy, which is what I have begun to call Olliver on a regular basis, is amazingly wonderful. He is growing up to be monster-huge. He's now over 15 hands. I did some measurements with my farrier and we've estimated him to end up being around 17 hands when he's done growing - and probably 1300-1400 lbs. Holy crap.

His training this summer went really well. He's so smart. And honest. And willing. I couldn't ask for anything more. Well. Let me put a modifier on that. He seems to think that fly spray and velcro are horse-eating monsters in disguise. But you can throw barrels, big rubber balls, chairs, etc at him and he doesn't even bat an eyelash. He's an odd one, my Boy is.

Olliver is exceeding all of my hopes, dreams and expectations. And I suck as a blogger. But I promise to try to do better. Seriously.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Happy Birthday to The Boy....

It's The Boy's birthday. He's one year old today! He's growing into such a nice looking horse. As he sheds out his baby and winter coat, he's turning into a black mealy - which I love, love, love.

T and I moved the horses to a new boarding facility in April (we basically got kicked off of the farm she was renting after my accident). I love the new place. We've got an indoor arena, two outdoor arenas, a round pen, an indoor wash stall, trails for riding. Olliver has a run in shed in his paddock. He was turned out with Shadow, but pulled up lame with heat in his knee a week and a half ago, so we pulled Shadow out so he could heal. He just feels this overwhelming need to try to run around on three legs on keep hurting himself. So we took his buddy away to slow him down a bit. Dork. Kids. He's doing nicely now.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


I'm all better. All healed. Well...kinda sorta.

I'm done with cervical collar as of yesterday. I realized today just how much muscle power it takes to hold your head up. Because I have no muscle power in my neck right now. It's exhausting. But it will get better...just gotta build the stamina back up.

It's gonna be another 6 weeks until I get the all clear to ride again...but that's okay. I can work with Olliver again on his "good boy" lessons and that's the most important thing.

I've neglected the blog while I healed from my injuries...but I didn't want to waste my typing on a big ol' pity party about how bored and miserable I was. But a lot of changes have happened in the meantime.

I'll write about those soon....


Friday, April 3, 2009


I'm getting better. Much, much better. So much so, that if it wasn't for this darn cervical collar, I could almost forget that I crash landed off of Talon almost 3 weeks ago. I do get to see the spine doctor on Tuesday. He still wants to wait until 6 weeks out from the accident to take new x-rays, but I'm hoping to get reprieve from the collar. It sucks. Big time. It's uncomfortable. It makes me itch. It's hard to wash my hair properly. Or my face. I'm breaking out like a 14 year old. I can't drive, so I'm stuck in the house, waiting and hoping for one of my friends to come pick me up for an outing....again, like a 14 year old. ARGH!

On the bright side...I got out to the farm last week to see Olliver. It was very emotional for me. I cried. I missed my boy tons and tons. I got to brush him and gave everyone treats. Even Talon. Bastard.

One of the girls from work came to pick me up today. She took me to my favorite yarn store. SMILE. I got some new stuff for the stash. Came home and knitted a calorimetry head band for Mikayla. She picked out some fantastic banana yellow wool. Finished already. She loves it. SMILE. I feel like I've accomplished something.

Monday, March 23, 2009


I meant to post this last Thursday, but hit Save instead of Publish. I blame the Vicodin...

Last Sunday (3/16) was gorgeous. T and I had plans to ride together, but due to family obligations, I ended up staying behind, while T went to HayCreek with CA. When I got to the farm, I saddled up Talon. He was flighty...dancing and spooking while I was saddling him. I took it easy at first...just riding around the corral. He was responding well, so I opened the gate and took him into the back paddock. Once we got to the back of the paddock, the wind started blowing...not sure if that was all that spooked him, but he spun around and took off like someone lit a firecracker under his butt. I lost my balance in the saddle and was hanging off the left side. Managed to pull myself up, but over-corrected, lost my stirrups and was then hanging from the right side - just as he hit the right side of the paddock- - with the T-post and hot wire. I hit my head on a T-post and down I went, right under his hooves. I got zapped by the hotwire a couple of times on my way down too. It was a couple of minutes before I could move...and about 10 minutes before Bryce heard me. 911 was called and off to TWFMC I went. I broke my C-1 vertebrae, my L2-L4 vertebrae have minor fractures and I have 11 staples putting my scalp back together. The trauma team that stapled my head up had to scrape green paint off of my skull when they cleaned up the wound (thankfully they put me under in the OR for that). I broke 2 teeth. I have a really painful, nasty contusion on my right flank/hip from where Talon stepped on me. As well as other miscellaneous bumps, bruises, etc.

I spent two days in the hospital...and I'm home now. I'm feeling a little better everyday. But I'm afraid that this blog is going to turn into "Olliver Grows While I Sit on My Butt at Home Unable to Go Anywhere or Do Anything"....UGH!!!!


Wednesday, March 4, 2009


I love Spring...

Okay, I know. Slow down. There's still snow on the ground. The weatherman is still talking about windchill factors. I don't care.

When I left for work yesterday morning (at 5:45 a.m.) a cardinal was singing outside my front door. Hearing a cardinal sing just before dawn is ALWAYS the first sing of Spring to me. Forget robins...for me, it's cardinals....

Spring is coming....

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Cross one off the bucket list...

One of my dreams was to see a performance of the Lipizzaner stallions live and in person. Not a video...seen 'em. Watched the You Tubes a bazillion times.

Last Sunday, the Lipizzaners came to Rochester. I got tickets for me, Mik and T awhile ago. Great tickets. Amazing seats. I was soooooooooo excited. When the first horse came out from behind the curtain, I burst into tears of joy. I don't think I breathed for two hours. It was the most amazing, beautiful, awe-inspiring performance I have ever seen. Such beauty. Such grace. So much power. Wow.

I have about 100 pictures from the show. Here are some of the best...

And the horse of the day? The man I fell in love with? It was the Andalusian stallion...try not to drool on your keyboard....

Monday, February 23, 2009

Olliver FAQ 1.0...

While I wait to get the photos from my weekend adventure off of the camera and uploaded to photobucket, I thought it might be a nice idea to compile a FAQ on Olliver. So here are the most frequently asked questions about my boy and the answers...

How did Olliver get his name?
Olliver originally had the barn name "Dealer". Yeah. I know. Not so cute. Especially considering some of my past aquaintences (ahem). Once Mik and I decided Olliver was THE ONE, we sat down to decide on a new name for him. His breeder wanted him to be registered as "Geramiah's Holy Dealer" - which we were cool with...but he needed a barn name that we gave him. Mik likes "O" names. We picked Olliver because he had such a rough start in life (Oliver Twist reference here)...and "Oliver" means - The olive tree. The biblical olive tree symbolizes fruitfulness and beauty and dignity. 'Extending an olive branch' signifies an offer of peace. I added the extra "l" just to be different. To be honest, everytime I look at my boy, he offers me peace and I forget all the stress of my life and my job. The name suits him perfectly!

Can you ride him?
No. Absolutely not. At least not for several years. And no, you can't set your baby on his back either!

Why not?
Because he's a baby. You can't ride baby horses. They have to grow. Their bones and joints need to develop. I don't care that he's half Thoroughbred. And that TB's run races at just 2 years of age. He's also half Friesian. Friesians grow slowly, sometimes until they're 8 years old. He needs time to grow and develop properly. He'll most likely be 4 years old before his first backing.

Well then, why'd you buy a baby if can't ride him?
Why not? Especially when it's been my life's dream to take a baby from weanling to riding partner? And yes, I plan to do a lot of his training myself. But, I'm not afraid to call in the professionals when necessary. His breeder also trains (dressage) and has offered to help with whatever aspects of his training necessary. Just the little bit of groundwork that we've done to this point has been so rewarding. Developing our bond has been a complete joy.

How big is he?
I can finally answer this question. We got the tape out on Friday and Olliver got his first "sticking". He is 13.3 hands. A hand is 4 inches. You measure from the ground to the top of his withers. So he's just about 4.5 feet high at his withers. He's still a little bit behind height-wise, but he's catching up from the unfortunate events of his early life. He weighs approximately 564 pounds. He could stand to gain a little weight...but he eats like a pig - he's a growing boy!

How big will he be?
Best estimates put him at just over 16 hands...that's pretty big. And he'll probably weigh close to 1200 lbs. He's gaining great bone and is showing every sign of being "warmblood" in his body type. His mom is over 16 hands and his dad is still growing and is just around 16 hands. I wanted a big horse and I got one!!

What does he eat?
Well...he's a hay burner. He gets all the hay his little butt cares to eat. Plus...he gets 5 lbs of Equine Junior, 2 lbs of Purina Mills Strategy GX, 2 lbs of sweet feed, 2 lbs of oats, 1 cup of Purina Mills Amplify - plus, for the winter, he's getting 3 ounces of Cool Calories 100. A day. That's a lot of food...BUT - he's a growing boy.....oh...and I forgot to mention, he gets treats too - apples, carrots and other horsie treats....

What is Olliver's job gonna be?
My plans for Olliver include trail riding and some dressage training. He's bred and built to be a 3-day eventer, but I don't know that I'm up for all of that. He'll get plenty of work though, and the dressage training should keep him challenged (me too!)...

Hmmmm....that should about do it for Olliver FAQ 1.o. I'll keep track of questions as I hear them, and provide v.2.0 in the future.


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

I'm Officially a New Mom...

It was a decent weekend weather wise. After the recent warm weather that melted the majority of our snow, we had a couple days of intense wind, that dried everything out really well...which meant time to ride the ponies!!!

No pictures from the weekend, but we had a grand time. On Friday, Olliver and I just hung out. Spent a lot of time just grooming, picking up feet, etc. He picks his feet up at my verbal "up" now. He's so smart. Good boy, Olliver!

On Saturday, we went riding. I got to ride Talon. He's really starting to settle in and is being more attentive to the people in his herd. He lets us catch him now and will come to us without the offer of food. He and Tubby are getting along better. Most of the squabbles come at feeding time...typical men!

After the ride on Saturday, Olliver gave a good scare. I noticed he was a little off. Not exactly lame or gimpy. But off. I was able to localize the issue to his left hip, in his stifle area. For those who may be horse-illiterate, that would be his hip area, but it's where his kneecap is. Scared the b-jeebers out of me. I was so scared. He didn't want me touching his stifle, kept moving away from me. Olliver's way of dealing with stuff he doesn't like is to walk away - and he kept trying to walk away from me. I sat in his stall and cried.

I called LaDel (his breeder). We decided to give him stall rest for a couple of days to see if that helped. With the somewhat icy footing in the pasture, and being turned out with big boys, he may have mis-stepped, or gotten kicked or something. Of course, as a new mom - I imagine all sorts of horrible things and completely freaked. Thank goodness for the ladies at HT - they helped calm me down and sent good vibes our way.

Of course, Olliver made me look like fool come Sunday morning. He was as good as new after a night of rest. Picked up his leg. Squeezed his stifle. Stretched his leg and did some range of motion. He was fine. I made him stay in all day. That made him a little hyper...all of that little boy energy cooped up all day. What was I thinking???

We went for another ride on Sunday...rode Tubby this time. After riding Talon, I felt like I was on a pony ride at the carnival. He's soooooooo lazy. He's gonna be in for a rude awakening once spring really hits and I get him working in the round pen. Gonna get that laziness out of his butt!! Gotta get him in shape so that he can keep up with Talon. God, Talon can really move out. He's a goer and rides like a DREAM!

So...back to Olliver. I was hanging out in his stall with him when we got back from the ride. He decided that my hat looked like a good snack and tried to nip it off my head. I snatched it back from him - and gave him my "ears pinned back 'here now!'" ("HERE NOW!" is what we say to the herd when someone gets unruly - they all now what that means). Olliver immediately went into his submissive "baby face" posture. I love his baby face. And was so touched that he gave it to me. Really showed me that he sees me as a leader of the herd.

Okay....I've babbled on long enough and have probably bored my reader(s?) to tears...but I'm having a REALLY bad week at work, and talking about the horses makes me feel better :)


Friday, February 13, 2009

Catching up...

Two weeks. Two whole weeks since I've taken the time to sit down and blog. How negligent am I? To be honest, I've been sick. Nasty, nasty cold. Still got it. In my chest. My nose ran like a faucet for 4 I can't stop with the coughing. And talk about TIRED! So, I've been using what energy I have to run my daughter back and forth to rowing practice and spend some time with the ponies...

The family did come to meet Olliver. It was FANTASTIC! He was a good boy (of course). My niece adored him. I have officially given her "the fever." My brother hates me. Life is good :)

Emily got to ride did I. And my brother. And my sister-in-law. He was very well-behaved and minded his manners well.

Last Friday, T took the day off and we went riding. The weather was gorgeous (around 40 degrees). Got in a fair amount of loping. I almost fell off once though. Winchester picked up the wrong lead (he's kinda dumb about that)...the started weaving, and then threw in a couple of bucks for good measure. It was such a beautiful day...everyone was feeling good. Even the Old Man was running...couldn't believe he still had that in him.

We brought Nick home last week as well...a week early. We were dying to get him home and get the farrier to work on his feet. His hooves looked horrible. Luckily, once Larry the farrier got done with him, his feet look much better and he is feeling good.

Nick has some issues though. We need to put a lot of work into him. He runs if you try to catch him. He fights with Tubby like he's a stud. Squealing, screaming, kicking. He basically ignores Olliver - so I'm happy about that. Since he seems to have no idea that his name is Nick, we've decided to call him Talon. He just basically feels no use for or connection to us - time for the round pen.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Something to look forward to...

Saturday is going to be a big day for Olliver. He's going to get to meet the rest of the family. My parents, my brother, his wife and my niece will be coming to meet him for the first time. My brother (Eric) and his family live in Indiana and don't get to Minnesota all that often. Luckily, Saturday is supposed to be pretty decent weather-wise. Traci and I are planning to saddle up Tubby and maybe Winchester to give Emily (my niece) a ride. Hopefully Mikayla will take another ride too. I can't wait for Olliver to meet his grandparents! LaDel is going to be coming by to see him on Saturday too, so it's going to be a big reunion.

Y'know, I called this blog, "Watching Olliver Grow"....last night, I actually noticed how much he's grown in the two months since we brought him home. We haven't measured him, but I'd guess he's grown at least 4 inches (a full hand) since then. He is so GORGEOUS. I love my boy so much!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Online Horse Home

In the age of the internet, everyone seems to have online home, community, or some such place where they spend the majority of their time. They make friends, share advice, gossip, gripes, and on and on. I've found an online home for my horse life.

The members there have really made me feel at home. I've been lurking there for quite awhile, but finally took the time last week to introduce myself. It's been a lot fun reading about their horses and drooling over their pictures. Been learning a lot too.

One of the members over at "HT" has started a blog on her new horse -Dillon. She loves him "almost" as much as I love Olliver. It's a new blog, but take a minute and check it out....

Friday, January 23, 2009

Bracing for another deep freeze...

Temps are expected to drop again I'm bracing for another round of sub-zero temps. I think I might run out to the farm for a little time with the boy while the sun shines. I had a good visit with him last night. He almost fell asleep during his brushing....with a big pile of hay in front of him. He was in heaven....getting all of his mommy's attention.

We got an update on Dancer from the trainers...she is doing fantastically! That makes me feel much better. Apparently they are seeing none of the behaviors from her that we were seeing - so I guess she just really hated Olliver. That makes me sad. But life at the farm is so nice, and mellow, and quiet. And we are so excited to get Nick home. Dancer will be happy with her job and the girls at her new home, so this is really for the best.

Next week is the last week of January. Which means February (short month)...then March. Spring IS coming. I can't wait to start riding again.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Falling in lurve with a shiny, black horse...

Let me introduce you to Nick. Nick will soon be the new kid at the farm. Traci and I went to take a look at Nick at the recommendation of our farrier, Larry. Traci fell in lurve. I kinda did to. He's gorgeous. Don't let the brown in the picture fool you. That's just summer fade. This boy is jet black. And there is just something about a shiny, black horse that does funny things to a girl.

Please forgive the picture. I lost my mind a little (lurve...shiny, black horse) and forgot that I was supposed to taking pictures...this is only good picture we got of him from his current owners.

Nick is a Morab (75% Morgan and 25% Arabian). He's 9 years old, but wasn't started under saddle until he was 5 years old. He has kind eyes. A very willing personality. A very easy-to-sit trot (I rode him, so I know this). He hadn't been ridden in two years before Saturday, but you'd never have known it.

Traci broke every rule there is when it came to horse shopping. She put money down on him without getting a vet check. And he's underweight. Hasn't had his shots in two years. His feet are in horrible shape. He needs finishing. And she agreed to the asking price without even trying to haggle down, get them to agree to a farrier/vet visit, nada. Yup. Lurve. Shiny, black horse.

Traci did come to her senses later on Sunday, once we got away from Nick's aura. She will be talking to his current owners about vet check, farrier visit, shots, etc. He'll most likely be coming home to the farm on Valentine's Day.

Ahhhhhh....a big, shiny, black horse for Valentine's Day. What more could a girl ask for???

Friday, January 16, 2009

Semi-frozen but still alive

I've survived the start of the 2009 ice age. It was -25 degrees this morning...but a balmy 1 degree right now, with promise of continuing to warm up overnight. I really think that Al Gore should visit Minnesota in January before he makes anymore a sequel to his movie about global warming. UGH!!!!

I went out to the farm to chores for Traci tonight. The little trooper did chores every night this week. Including hauling water one night when the power went out and the automatic waterer froze up. It was SO GOOD to see "the Boys". WOW. The dynamics have really, really changed with Dancer gone. We took her down to Iowa last weekend to get some training before she's sold. There are two teenage girls (sisters) who are really interested in her...and they'll be good to her, so we're happy that she'll be going to a good home, instead of being sold at auction.

I hated to see her sold, but she had gotten all "hormonal mare" and evil, witchy mean. She tried to go through a metal stock gate to get at Olliver two weeks ago. She was beating up on Shadow (her son)....she was causing much unrest in the herd. Traci was ready to let her go. The trainer in Iowa is the person that Traci bought her from and will make sure that she goes to a good home.

In the meantime, there is nothing but peace and love at the farm now. Nothing but geldings...well, technically, Olliver still has his little testiculars, but he's young enough that it doesn't matter a whole lot yet. There is no tying up at feeding time...they respect each others space and food. Ahhhhh.....Shadow told me tonight that while he misses his mom, it's pretty cool with just "the Boys"...they can fart and scratch their butts all they want to...and drool over the cute little mares down the road...and not get smacked around for it. Tubby just rolled his eyes, "Kids..." LOL.

Olliver was happy to see me tonight, and I him. I missed the little bugger something awful this week.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Holy Shiz-nit!

I need to vent. Seriously vent. It's so freakin' cold...I mean ridiculouly, inappropriately cold. Cold enough to make me question my sanity as to why I live here. It's supposed to -26 degrees in the morning. That's below zero, folks. And without factoring in the windchill. That's cold enough to freeze your fingers off in about 0.2 seconds. I can't stand this. I haven't seen Olliver since Saturday night. It's just too cold to risk the drive out to the farm - and we've had snow this week too. - so the roads are crappy. I'm satisfied just to make it back and forth to work everyday. UGH! I honestly cried this morning before I left for work. I'll probably have to take a valium just to get myself to leave the house in the morning.

On the bright's supposed to be close to 30 degrees ABOVE zero on Sunday. That's a 50 degree temperature swing to the positive. I can suck it. It will get better. (yeah...just keep telling yourself that...)

I put a pot of decaf on when I got home tonight....already curled up in bed with the cats. They are sooooooo snuggly when it's cold like this. I swear I'm moving south when this economy straightens out. I just can't take these Minnesota winters anymore.

GRRRRRR.....or should I say, BRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!! If you don't hear from me in the next week, send out the search party with the big furry dogs with the barrels of brandy :)

Monday, January 12, 2009

Here I am...

I have been sooooo neglectful of the blog. It's winter. It's cold. I'm basically house-bound. And yet, I'm neglecting the blog. I promise to be better.

Olliver got to meet his new farrier last week. Larry came out on Thursday evening. Olliver got his pedicure. He was a pretty good boy. He did get a little wiggy, but overall he handled his trim quite well. Only clipping - which was great! Larry (who I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE) couldn't say enough good things about my boy. Apparently he has perfect feet. Strong, hard, slow growing hooves. Naturally sloughing frogs. He had no bruising on his soles. Phew! Larry thinks he can fix some of the issues with the cow-hocking. Said Olliver's issue is pretty normal for his breeding at his age. Larry also breeds horses, trains (using Clinton Anderson's Natural Horsemanship) and he and his wife give riding lessons. Best part, he just lives a couple miles up the road from Traci. Traci and I are looking forward to spending LOTS of time at his place if winter ever quits.

Once Larry was done giving pedicures to the ponies....he and were chatting. He told me that it was very obvious that Olliver and I have a very strong bond already. He said that Olliver was instantly calm once I got to the farm that evening...and he responded really well to me. Larry totally made my night!

Sickeningly cold temperatures forecast for this week...along with blowing snow. We got about 5 inches of snow so far today. UGH! I'd give anything for a January thaw right about now.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Back to Work Monday...

Back-to-work-after-1o-days-of-vacation-Monday today. Reminded me of why I hate being a supervisor. Wish people could just follow the rules and not have to push their limits all the time. My daughter is more mature some days. Why oh why can't I win the lottery so I can spend every day playing with Olliver and the other critters?????

So I guess I owe you a report on sheath cleaning. I hope you did your homework and read the article "Meet Mr. Hand." Well, I hate to disappoint you're not going to get one. There take that! Heh. Just kidding. I really don't have much to tell you because I didn't have to do it :) Traci, bless her sweet heart, was the one that stuck her hand and forearm up into Tubby's nether regions...poor woman. He was a good sport about it all and got lots of treats and lovin'. He even got his favorite peppermints for being such a good boy. He's still swollen, but no longer walking like he's got a stick shoved up somewheres...

While Tubby was eating his peppermints, Olliver was just sure that he needed some too. He'd lip one up from my hand....his eyes would bug out, he'd toss his little head around and spit the peppermint out. It was hysterical. He finally decided after trying a couple that I must be trying to poison him, and he took off, rip-snorting around the corral.

We kept Tubby in with Olliver for a couple of days. They get along great! Lots of playing going on...very cute. It will be really interesting to see how the social dynamics in the herd change once Dancer and Shadow are gone...which could be as soon as this coming Saturday.
The best part of vacation was all of the time that I got to spend with Olliver. I took him for long walks down the road and back every day. Traci came along with Tubby on New Years Day. We did lots of groundwork. He is such a smart kid. And he tries so hard to figure out just what I want from him and wants to please me so much. I can tell he thinks about his lessons too, because the next time we work, he just that much better at his exercises. He remembers what he if I have to go a few days between working with him, he doesn't lose what he's learned. He is just an absolute joy!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

OMG It's Saturday!

I woke up this morning and realized it's Saturday. Saturday. As in the day before Sunday. And Sunday is the last day of my vacation. Monday means back to work. And the rat race at TWRMC. ARGH!!!!

Vacation has been wonderful. I've sooooooo needed this break. I've had such a great time. Hanging out with Mikayla. Spending time at the farm with Olliver and the rest of the herd. Chilling with Traci. It really has been a busy vacation. No wonder why I'm still TIRED!

One of the highlights of my vacation was an impromptu trip to Winona to see my parents. We went over to Winona last Sunday. I got to watch the Vikings game with my dad. Then....I got to spend a couple hours drinking coffee and catching up with Dorkchic. She was home for the holidays from LA. Oh...who's Dorkchic?? We grew up together in Winona...but lost touch after high school, but thanks to the power of the intranet we've been chatting online on occassion. She has a wonderful blog - which was the inspiration for this here blog. She knits beautiful things with yummy yarn. And she thinks Olliver is cute. So - she's very, very cool. Anyway, this is my official shout-out to Dorkchic and her blog. It was wonderful to see you guurrlll...hope to see you again soon!!!

Oh plans for today....I'm procrastinating getting out of bed this morning. One of the most unsavory things about owning a gelding is having to clean their sheaths. Yes, that sheath. His weenis. YUCK! Traci hasn't cleaned Tubby's in a long, long time. And now his sheath is swollen and ouchy. He's walking funny and we're worried now that he may get an infection. So....I get to help with that today. Yippee. In preparation for my upcoming story on cleaning Tubby's sheath, here is a funny article/instructions about how to clean's a humorous take on an unhumorous task (Meet Mr. Hand). Take a few minutes to read will make you giggle. I will write all about it'cha can't wait :)

Friday, January 2, 2009

Happy New Year!

Happy 2009!

I hope everyone had a wonderful and safe New Year's Eve... Mikayla hosted a sleep over with her girlfriends - "retro-80's" theme. The girls got a good laugh when I told them that I was their age in the 80s...There was lots of food and revelry and piles of confetti for me to vacuum up yesterday morning (lucky me)...
Hang in there...An update on Olliver is coming soon with some new pictures...