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Until one has loved an animal, part of their soul remains unawakened.

Ride with your heart and soul ~ your horse can feel it

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Times have changed...

... and while I don't think we'll see "normal" as it was before I do hope that things become closer to that than the strange new world we've been living in since covid (SARS-CoV-2) came to us.

Canada had some general rules for how things were to be handled, a lot seemed to be left to individual provinces. We've been fairly fortunate here in the grand scheme of things, at least as far as how many casualties there have been. The social & economic toll has been pretty bad though.

Things are starting to open back up, which is a relief. However here in Saskatchewan some of the decisions being made are not just confusing they're also frustrating. For example you can go fishing, and with members of other households in the boat, yet equine events are a no-no.  Although the government has decided that individual private lessons can take place (which previously they were saying NO to). Still, no clinics, group lessons, or events. Which brings us to this:

I think I can say prior to covid I never thought I'd see this, let alone compete in one. However here we are.

Lefta & I entered in one that ran this past week. Not being sure if I'd enter or not I ended up leaving it to the last day for my run, which ended up being the hottest and windiest day yet.  I set up the pattern* in my arena and had a friend pop over to stopwatch & video for me.

 After it was all set up I changed into one of my MSport6 "air conditioned" shirts (like I said it was hot!), tacked up and brought Lefta to the arena. I think she thought it was the lamest jackpot eeevvveeerrr with no one else there. But heck she had her 'work clothes' on and she knew she was there to make a run. Warming her up... she was spicy. I had no idea what to expect for our run since I don't make runs at home (unless there's an actual jackpot there) but she went in hard and we kinda blew first a bit. Second was nice although we did bow out a bit to third. Third was also pretty good but again we bowed out a bit on the way home, not out of third itself though which is something we've had a bit of an issue with.

I reviewed the video and thought well heck *maybe* I'll place in the 4D lol Then I sent it in to one of the race organizers for approval before sending in my entry. So to say I was shocked that we won the 2D is an understatement ;)

With it looking like virtual events are here for the next little while, possibly the summer, I reached out to a neighbour about co-hosting one (possibly more if it goes ok) and donating part of the entry fee to a local charity. My original plans before all this had been to host a gymkhana or two this summer, again to raise money for charity.

Hope y'all are keeping well and your return to normal goes smoothly.

* pattern size was a 44' score from the timers to 1st and 2nd.  57' between 1st and 2nd.  70' to 3rd.  To say it was tiny in my arena is an understatement lol

Friday, January 3, 2020

First Ride!

Of 2020 that is :)

I rode Lefta on NYE at dusk.  It was my first ride in months, after district finals the horses pretty much got a big vacation/break while I tried to let my leg heal (torn/bruised groin muscle from earlier in the season).She was pretty well behaved but I could tell she really wanted me to let her open up some instead of walking/trotting.  My leg felt the strain of getting on though (should have used a mounting block!) so we stuck to quiet slow work.

Frosty got the call for the first ride of the year and he was so good!  You'd never know he'd had so much time off.  We wandered around the arena playing with a few things to work on softness.  It was the perfect start to the day.

-2C on January 2nd!! :o
I wasn't really dressed for riding, I had gone out to grain and maybe play with the horses a bit but man these fleeced lined leggings are nice for milder winter days!  I may wear them some more, but I either need to find bigger stirrups or wear different boots.  I've been hung up in a stirrup before and once was enough!

While I really like these milder temps I sure hope we get some more snow.

Sunday, December 22, 2019

Crew Update

Its been awhile since I posted about the crew here at Rafter K, and there have been a few changes...

Super Raincloud (aka Applejack, Appy) crossed the Rainbow Bridge :(
Smudge was sold.  Mr Tim bought him back and resold him.  He was a nice enough horse, he just wasn't being used a lot and was too nice to sit around getting fat. 
Tavi (JLS Shock N Twist) grew up into a nice young horse, he ended up going down south with BEC when we made a trade.  Her Frosty horse for Tavi.
Odin (JLS Ima Cool Threat) grew up nice as well... and really GREW UP.  Holy smokes, he went from a tiny yearling that we hoped would hit Voodoo's size (approx 14.3) to 16.1 when I sold him :o 
He went to a ranch in Saskatchewan, the plan was to ranch and team rope off him.

Saskatchewan has been in a drought cycle which resulted in the Dexters being sold off as well.  I miss the homegrown beef but it just wasn't financially feasible to buy hay for a hobby herd.
Those scruffy little things I introduced y'all to 8 years ago matured into very nice Dexter cows.
We added a nice bull to the little herd, purebred but the papers never did come :/
He was such a nice tempered bull.  With his build and size he got bought to be a heifer sire by a commercial cattleman. He was pretty happy with him, said he sired really nice calves and of a good size.

But before we sold we had our own calves for a few years.  The Dexters were really good moms and calved easily.  I miss the seeing the calves play in the spring and summer.

So, that's the update on who is gone.  Now for who is here...

The three amigos, Rootbeer, Carlos!, and George are still here.  Rootbeer's estimated age is 30! :o He's getting a little grey in the face now.
We can't really call them the three amigos any longer though, Albie joined the Rafter K fam last fall.
Voodoo is still King of the Universe ;)
And Miss Lefta (On The Money Girl KR) has matured into a very nice mare.  She is definitely The Queen, she's so subtle with her "herd boss" status that it took some watching the herd to realize she is most definitely in charge.
We've had a lot of fun together, and some frustration too (but isn't that usually the truth with horses?) We've also won some cash and prizes, and a couple buckles :)


Frosty (Docs Frosty Command) settled right in as a "new Canadian".  He's taken me to the short go every year in our district finals and the only provincial finals short go he didn't make was the very first year we were together, and in all fairness I had just started to feel comfortable actually running him then (and he didn't miss the short go by much).  He's the first horse that I won money with at provincial's.  And he earned a buckle too at district finals last year :)  
He's quite the guy and I'm very grateful he's with me.

Little Miss Sarita (Fuegos Cuda Girl) was started by the husband of a friend I met through barrel racing, and so far I'm super happy with her.  This spring I plan to start her on barrels (maybe work on it some this winter depending on weather).
Shine (Little Chrome Dually) is turning into a pretty little thing.  When I bought her I had been considering trying Working Cowhorse but for a variety of reasons I'm putting that idea on the shelf.  She may be a barrel horse, but if so I don't think it will be with me.  Current plans are to sell her.

Reya (Fuegos French Jackie) is a little bit of a diva so far lol.  The plan is to have her started this spring/summer by the same guy that started Sarita.  It'll be interesting to see the differences and similarities between the two once they're both under saddle.
And then there's... ? A currently unnamed weanling filly off the stud Two Page Pal.  Her AQHA registration isn't back yet and her barn name is narrowed down to a couple choices - she's a recent, unplanned, purchase.  No joke, part of the reason she was bought is I said to Hubster "well I've never had a palomino" lmao  She's going to be  CBHI and Super Stakes as well as Sask Barrel Bonanza eligible.
Seriously though, TPP is an aged stud and there may not be many chances to own one, I like the temperament of the ones I've been around, they do decent in the barrel pen, and at my age this may well be the last youngster I buy.

Her winter coat came in kinda creamy yellow however she was very gold this summer.  The last pic is the day I brought her home, she's not dirty her legs are that dark.  There's a good chance she'll either be a golden palomino or a sooty/chocolate palomino!  I'm good either way, those are my favourite versions of palomino!

Friday, December 20, 2019

Umm yeah... hi?

O.M.G. y'all... I don't know how or why or when I got so bad at blogging.  I still read on a regular basis but I don't comment very often, and clearly I don't post.

I know part of it is that my internet at home is horrible, actually currently basically no internet (other than the data on my phone).  I am hoping that changes sometime in the new year, but it likely won't be soon unless I find a better provider or ours can fix their crap service.
Part of it I'm sure is that I've become friends (in RL or online) with a few of my favourite bloggers so blogging is no longer the sole form of communication.
I think I've also been in a bit of a slump as for what to say.  Hopefully that turns around too.  The whole thing of having a place to look back at what's happened is definitely nice and there are times where I shuffle through Facebook or Instagram trying to find something and tell myself "if only I'd blogged that..."
That said, there are a few things to update on so if I can get my "poop in a group" I'll have a few posts up in the next short while :)