Friday, February 26, 2010

For my Friend

Thanks Jen!

Jen gave me an AwArD. WooooHoooo! Now I have to list 7 things about me and pass along to 15 people. 15 PEOPLE? I don't KNOW 15 BLOGGERS.....but I'll do the bestest I can!

7 Things About Me ......... HUMMM

1. It has always been a dream of mine to own ONE amazing horse and win a world title....I'm still dreaming that dream! Maybe soon I can live it!

2. After hubby finishes school, it's MY TURN!

3. I'm not sure what I'm going to College for, but I'm going!

4. Been giving lots of thought to raising a child/children lately. And after much consideration I'm not sure that is something that I want to do in my current location.....hummmmm

5. I like all types of music, except RAP

6. I prefer a quiet evening at home to the BAR scene.

7. I'm dying to know why MOST of the men I've met in SOUTH TEXAS can't hardly ever be seen with out a beer in their hands? What is this place and why is it this way??

Hope that was enough information for you!!!

OK.....Pass on the Award....let's see.....

1. Eventing-A-Gogo - your blog entries are NEVER boring! Never a dull moment in Gogo land! Keep Gogo-ing and keeping us posted! Love reading your blog!

2. Saving Argus - Maybe an AWARD will motivate some more posts huh? The story of the horses recovery and all those involved is AMAZING! Check it out!

3. The Horseshoeing House Wife - Mikey your adventures NEVER cease to amaze me! Keep the stories coming! Thanks for the photos, and VIDEOS!

4. Riding Aside - something I could never do, and admire this blogger for doing! You go Girl!

5. From Bell Boots to Botox - this blogger is keeping it real! No topic is off limits! A fun, fun, FUN read!

7. I Will Jump Sweet Jumps - follow the many adventures of Beckz -an aspiring show jumper who lives in New Zealand. Beckz, you keep jumping those jumps!

8. Mommy In Spurs - Lil Mamma, maybe this will get you out of your A$$ draggin slump! blog on, blog on!

9. Work In Progress - Because my life IS your title! I enjoy your posts...when you post! We are on about the same page...the only difference is you are riding and I'm not! I'm on the hunt for the prefect show horse, still, and you are doing it! keep blogging, i LOVE reading!

Alright bloggers! Enjoy your award, and have FUN passing it along!

Breeding Class 202

I spoke with my trainer last night, and got some bad news.
One of her other clients has a very nice mare that they bred last year. I'm 99% sure she was bred to Only Krymsun.
The foal was born earlier this week. The mare is a black and white overo. She and her kiddo won many, many awards at shows, including some PINTO world championships. The resulting foal was a Lethal White, and died with in 24 hours of birth. Here is some information about Lethal White. Please have your mare tested, and make sure you verify that the stallion you are breeding to has been tested.

Stalking the Lethal White Syndrome
University of Minnesota researchers track down the gene responsible for lethal white foals
By PAUL D. VROTSOS RVT and ELIZABETH M. SANTSCHI DVMfrom the July 1998 Paint Horse Journal
In order for a lethal white foal to be produced, each parent must contribute a copy of the lethal allele. It is important to note that the genetic makeup of the lethal foal will not affect that of subsequent foals. Occasionally, solid white or nearly solid white foals are born to Paint Horses of overo lineage. Initially these foals appear normal, but after a short period of time show signs of colic due to an inability to pass feces.
This condition, referred to as Overo Lethal White Syndrome (OLWS) is always fatal, and results in both emotional and economic loss to breeders.
In 1996, the University of Minnesota Genetics Group sent a grant proposal to the American Paint Horse Association. We requested funds to study OLWS using newly developed techniques that allow scientists to decode genes. In September of that year, APHA gave the Group $7,500 to begin the investigation.
The Equine Genetics Group is comprised of faculty and staff who seek to improve equine health and breeding by investigating the genetic basis of diseases found in horses. The OLWS group includes veterinarians Dr. Elizabeth Santschi and Dr. Stephanie Valberg, biochemist Dr. James Mickelson, and Paint Horse breeder Paul Vrotsos, who manages the university's large-animal hospital.
The focus of the Equine Genetics Group is to find the genetic basis for OLWS. If a causative gene could be found, Paint breeders could make better-informed breeding decisions and minimize the occurrence of OLWS.
The body of all living things is made of protein, mineral and water. The proteins comprise a large proportion of the body's structure, and also regulate body functions by acting as hormones and enzymes.
The building blocks of proteins are amino acids, and the function of the protein is dependent on the order of the amino acids. The order of the amino acids is determined by DNA, which codes for the composition of the body, its growth and function.
The code for inherited conditions such as OLWS is in the DNA, and therefore its composition must be determined before it can be known how it causes disease.
Similar to how a protein is made of amino acids, DNA is made of bases. These bases are arranged in triplets that code for the amino acids.
When the base pairs change (through mutation) and cause an amino acid substitution, the function of the protein coded is altered. The alteration of protein function causes genetic traits, including disease.
The University of Minnesota has been involved in research on OLWS for many years. The first anatomic description of OLWS in 1982 was by Dr. Bruce Hultgren, who also noted the similarity of OLWS to certain conditions in humans and lab animals.
Paul Vrotsos was motivated to pursue the cause of OLWS because his mares had delivered OLWS foals. He was aware, based on his own experience and scientific training, that there was misinformation circulating about OLWS. Some breeders were basing breeding decisions on this erroneous information.
He also knew that small breeders such as he need the best information available to be successful.
Vrotsos joined the Equine Genetics Group to help find a molecular cause of OLWS, so we could begin debunking the myths and replace them with scientific fact.
The work began, as many projects do, in the library.
This overo mare has had three lethal white foals. The only way to know if her tobiano foal is a carrier of the lethal gene is to bloodtest it.
We knew that causative genes responsible for similar conditions in other species had been detected. We elected to sequence (determine the order of base pairs and the resulting amino acids) for two "candidate genes."
During the summer of 1996 (mid-point in Minnesota's breeding season) we collected tissue from four OLWS-affected foals. During the winter and spring of 1997, sequencing of tissue from normal horses and those displaying OLWS was performed.
By early summer, we thought we had detected a mutation; two base pairs in OLWS foals differed from those found in normal horses in a gene that controls an important receptor. This changed an amino acid in a critical section.
The next step was to develop a test for the normal and lethal sequences, and test samples from OLWS-affected foals, the parents of those foals, and unaffected horses. This would determine the correlation between the gene sequence and the disease.
Each gene has two units (alleles), and foals inherit one allele from each parent. We expected OLWS foals to have two lethal alleles (L), their parents to have one normal (N) and one lethal allele, and solid-colored horses of other breeds to have two copies of the normal allele.
To test the theory, we asked for and received the support of the Minnesota Paint Horse Association. They provided approximately 100 blood samples for analysis.
We were gratified when test results were as expected; all OLWS foals were L/L, their parents N/L, and solid horses N/N.
This is strong evidence that the gene mutation detected is responsible for OLWS. To date, we have tested almost 1,000 horses, and the results are consistent.
The next step to prove that this mutation causes OLWS is to demonstrate a change in the function in the receptor in tissue, and that work is progressing.
There are some Paint Horses born completely white with blue eyes that survive. These are often termed "living lethals," a misnomer as they are not homozygous for the lethal allele.
Concurrently, we are testing Paints from all over the country to determine the association of the Lethal allele with coat color. While the results are not yet final, it appears that all overo horses are not the same, at least for this gene. Overos can carry either (N/N) or (N/L). We have not found a living adult horse that has two copies of the lethal sequence (L/L), and we have tested several all-white Paints.
We have found carrier horses in overos, tobianos, toveros, Solid-colored Horses, crop-out Quarter Horses and Pintos. The discovery of the lethal allele in Pintos is important in limiting the spread of this mutation, because many Pinto breeders are unfamiliar with OLWS and the gene is now making its way into other breeds that are crossing onto Paints for color production.
By taking the lead in the investigation of OLWS, the APHA has provided valuable information to all breeders. At the University of Minnesota we are excited about these discoveries and the avenues of investigation they open.
Our success is due to the collaborative efforts of scientists, the Minnesota Paint Horse Association and the APHA. We are now anxious to move forward in the discovery of new information about the inheritance of coat color, coat patterns and equine disease.

Following are nine common myths regarding lethal white syndrome. The correct information is provided by the University of Minnesota Equine Genetics Group.
Myth #1: All overo horses are carriers of the lethal allele.
Fact: There are many overos that do not carry the lethal allele.

Myth #2: Twenty-five percent of foals from two overo parents will be lethal whites.
Fact: Because there are overos that do not carry the allele, the incidence of lethal white syndrome is less than 25 percent in overo-to-overo matings.

Myth #3: Registered tobianos, Solid-colored Horses, or Paint crosses cannot carry the lethal allele.
Fact: There are tobianos that have overo bloodlines, and these horses can be carriers of the lethal allele. Solid-colored Horses and Paint crosses can carry the lethal allele.

Myth #4: Totally white Paints are not carriers of the lethal allele.
Fact: These white horses are often carriers of the lethal allele.

Myth #5: All totally white foals born to two overo parents are lethal whites.
Fact: There are totally white Paints that are not affected by the lethal white syndrome.

Myth #6: Mares cannot produce lethal foals in consecutive years.
Fact: The genetic make-up of one foal does not affect subsequent births.

Myth #7: Only one parent determines if a foal will be a lethal white.
Fact: Both sire and dam contribute a copy of the lethal allele.

Myth #8: Crop-out Quarter Horses cannot carry the lethal allele.
Fact: A small number of crop-outs have been tested and found to be carriers of the lethal allele.

Myth #9: You can reliably tell the carrier status of a Paint by their color pattern.
Fact: This is false.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Play with Skeletor

Although I didn't get out to the round pen till well after dark last night, I did take some time to go play with Skeletor with OUT putting medicine on his owie.

It took him a few minutes to realize I was 'ok' in the dark and I wasn't the big, bad boogie monster.
I took some treats.
Rubbed his head, scratched his ears....made loud noises by 'slapping' his blanket and scratching it....undid and redid his Velcro (he use to HATE THAT). Made him lower his head to pressure behind his ears (getting ready for the bridle at some point) He wasn't perfect. He did stay right with me though. He jumped sometimes, at somethings. But I've never messed with him in the dark before, and he hasn't been messed with THAT MUCH in the daylight!
Why bother? Because I don't want him to think every time I go out there I'm going to do something he sees as 'bad'.
It's like the cowboy who can't catch his horse. When asked how often he catches his horse he replied "only when I need him to work". DUH, if I only came to you when I needed you to do something for me....don't you think about the 3rd or 4th time I saw you coming, or saw your name on caller ID I'd run the other way or not answer? Damn Skippy!
Horses are no different. Creatures of habit, hello!
So...Skelly and I played last night. I think he enjoyed it. He followed me all over..and tried to follow me out to gate!
He's a good boy, and quick learner!

Sometimes you just need a friend

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

You Go Girl!!!


Interesting title huh?
Well, let's just say we didn't get the SNOW that was predicted last night...but we got some more unneeded rain at my house. I know, I know...don't complain. We'll be screaming for rain again this summer I'm let's take all we can get now.
Got up a bit later this am to dr Skelly. He's been sooooo good....I figured he was really learning something.
DH was less than cooperative...he stayed in bed. MUST BE FREAKIN NICE huh?
So, i crushed pills after donning a few layers and headed out into the COLD....
Yeah, chilly...but no SNOW.
Skelly's 'pasture' (aka round pen) was a muddy mess.
Maybe I should explain my choice in foot wear sneakers. YES SNEAKERS, not TENNIS shoes....I DO NOT PLAY TENNIS
That being said.....UNLACED SNEAKERS. It's gotten to be a habit lately..slip 'em what needs done....slip 'em off. Easy Peasy....I like that.
Enter Skelly's Pen. Turn, close gate. Set bucket in bucket (LOL). Turn. Catch Skelly with ease. He was waiting right there...didn't budge. I rubbed him for a sec.....then undid right side of neck cover and folded it into itself. Next I undid the chest straps on his blanket so I could see his owie. I'm so happy to report that his owie is healing. VERY WELL. It's covered over, nice small scab. Very good.
Like I said...DH STAYED IN BED. SO, I'm dr-ing Skelly myself. I keep his nose turned into me...nice small circle.....he moves a little bit and stops. I go to touch his owie, he moves a little bit and stops....he moves a lot! I move with sneaker doesn't....i step in about 4 inches on mud with my right foot...i start cursing DH. Not HIS fault I didn't tie my sneakers, but I wouldn't have to be following him all over the round pen so much if he'd have been there to lend an extra hand. Not taking my stress out on Skelly I step back into the sneaker (squish squish) and follow him some more. Spray medicine....move a bit.....put baking powder...move around a little bit. Rub shoulder till he stands still. Rub some more. Touch owie area....he stands still. We end on a good note! put blanket back together, but neck cover back on. Pressure behind ears, he lowers head. Scratch scratch rub rub on face. I dump his food and leave him to it. He's happy to eat his medicine enriched breakfast, thank goodness!
Leave sneakers caked in mud on the back porch steps...ask DH to hose them down. Rinse of muddy foot in bathtub and get ready for work.....
I'm happy I didn't take the DH and no sneaker tying frustration out on my horse. He didn't deserve it....
On the plus side I know I can dr Skelly solo now. That's a good thing!
Have a good day everyone!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Tuesday AM Meds

Ok.....this is a test
A test to see what Skeletor learned yesterday
I got up at 6:15 and said...well...I might as well get out there....this way if he's bad I've got almost an hour to work with him before I have to get ready to leave for work.....
I gathered up my stuff.....meds....water spray bottle.....grain with mushed up meds...and headed to the round pen...
I opened the gate.....i set the bucket down...I closed the gate.....I turned around.......I set the bucket in his food bucket.....I turned around......I walked up to Skeletor and he.....
Stood still......let me catch him.....and attach his lead rope.....
Lots of head scratching and licking and chewing......
We pulled his blanket off......
I started spraying......
Robert sprayed the medicine with only a slight sideways step....
He put the baking powder over it with only a slight flinch....
Blankets went back on
neck cover went back on...with lots of Velcro noise
he stood nice and still
pressure behind ears lowered head and got some licking and chewing
on both sides
we backed up....walked forward...backed up....walked forward....
scratches on the head...licking and chewing....
and then I let him go to eat his breakfast.
What a good Skelly, good boy.

Skeletor, the Round Pen, Sweat, Houdini

Now.....that's a mouth full!!

Arrived home last night with about 20 mins of daylight left. Skeletor had been soo good I figured NO problem!
Grabbed the WATER spray bottle, the medicine spray bottle, and the baking powder....and his dinner,m his blanket and off I went.....

I walked into the round pen, set down the bucket. I turned to shut the gate.....turned around and the flight was on! Skeletor wouldn't get near me. He would run the other way and swing his butt my direction...nope...nothing doing.....
Around the round pen we went. I started using 1/2 the pen...turning him to keep him away from his bucket (which hangs on the side of the round pen) and his blanket which I'd laid next to his bucket.
Over and over he'd swing his ass my way. Over and Over I'd turn him, over and over he'd turn his butt. When he did turn towards me...I wouldn't send him away quite so hard.
When he'd turn into me 2x in a row...and turn my shoulder in and ask him to stop.
I'd approach him and he'd run...
Lather, Rinse, Repeat for a good 30 mins.
It's dark.....I can't see all that well....and he's still going......
He'd stop and let me almost get to him and take off....
and Around and Around we'd go....AGAIN.
Finally, FINALLY after about 45 mins he turned into me when I asked him to stop....licking and chewing and stood stark still as I approached. I rubbed his sweaty head while he licked and chewed. I clipped the lead rope on him and we walked to the gate.
He was huffing and puffing and was sooooo tired! Poor guy.
Bless his heart. It's not his fault he doesn't know anything.....but he learned a great lesson tonight.
He was too hot to eat and too sweaty to blanket.
I took him over to his old "pen" and tied him to a tree to 'chill' out while I went to feed and blanket the others.
I fed and blanketed one and went back to the pen to check Skelly. He'd pulled his rope and was munching some grass on the ground.
I went back to the pen and shortened his rope and left him in his pen.

I went to the front to feed Cam, Pissy, and Momma and blanket them.
Momma no problem....Cam, no problem. Pissy on the other hand wanted no part of being caught or blanketed. She ran around for about 5 or 10 mins. Long enough for Cam to eat his dinner and get his blanket on. I took her grain and blanket and left the pen. No catch, no dinner. That simple. She wouldn't change her mind. There's a big round bale in her pen...she's not starving.

I walked back to the feed 'barn' and as I rounded the corner I glanced at the pen where Skelly was. He was running around his pen, no halter or lead.
What happened?
I dropped buckets, blanket, flashlight and walked to the pen. He'd pulled on the rope and slipped his halter off. GREAT!
He's had his halter on for a while now. It's the only way we can catch him. He's NEVER going to let me get a halter back on him.
I hung Pissy's bucket on the fence....
A few approach and retreat and approach and retreat....a little patience on my part and Skelly let me put his halter on. He just stood there and let me put his halter on.
What a good boy. He'd learned something in that round pen session tonight. People aren't so bad. Mom is in charge.
No longer huffing and puffing but still a bit damp we walked to his round pen. I put his blanket on....he stood very still.
I decided he needed his neck cover.
It's pitch black....has been for over an hour.
He walks calmly beside me back to the feed 'barn' to get his neck cover....
He stands still while I put it on. That means undoing the Velcro....Velcro use to scare Skelly. He doesn't budge.
We walk calmly back to the round pen.
We back...we walk forward...we back....he's light and responsive. He lowers his head to pressure behind the ears....first on the left, then the right. We back one more time. Perfect....
I rub his face between his eyes. He licks and chews....
I unclip the lead and he follows me to his bucket. When I step away he started to devour his dinner.....
What a good boy.....

Very tired I gather buckets, blanket that should be on my filly and flashlight and put things away.
I go inside and find a hungry Tucker and company.
I feed the hungry dogs, and let them out....
9pm I'm making dinner for myself......
What a night!!!

Monday, February 22, 2010

I don't like my medicine!

Sometimes, horses are like little kids....they don't like their medicine.

DH called me Saturday afternoon......he was complaining about whoever shot Skelly....he wished he could make THEM come deal with him.
Apparently he didn't want to stand still for his meds....not his oral meds...his topical meds.
We use Underwood's it's truly the best medicine on the planet!!

Skeletor hasn't been messed with much since he came to our place. I know, our fault.
We didn't have the place to work him till the end of 2009. We got a round pen. Then the weather got bad and...well...I know most of you can relate. We don't have any place covered to work our horses and we are at the mercy of the elements.
Skelly often times acts like a wild 2 yr old whose never been touched.
Apparently that's how he was acting Saturday when DH went to put his medicine on.

I told him to wait till I got home to help.
He said he got it done...
I said ok...I'll help you in the morning.....

Sunday am came and out we went to put Skelly's medicine on.
And the fight was on.
Guys don't always understand that 5 minutes of prepping can turn what might end up as a war into a small hissy fit.
DH had gone in with the 'just do it' (thanks Nike) attitude instead of the 'lets teach this little bugger something' attitude.
20 misn of squirting a spray bottle full of water on and around Skelly and he stood pretty well for his meds.
Lather, Rinse, Repeat Sunday PM and Monday am......what a good boy.....
Monday PM however.....a story all of it's own!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

How Skeletor came to us

Skeletor doesn't know much. He tolerates people and that's about it. When he was born I messed with him a lot. He loved people.
Then, he smacked his head on something and left a nasty owie on his face right about his right eye. This caused him to start being head shy. He was put on meds, and his head was dr'd every day.
At this point my ex and I split. Skelly was still 'on his momma' and my ex wanted his momma so Skelly stayed with him. At this point though, he wasn't named Skeletor...his name was Joker. He was always running around the pasture bouncing around the other horses. He reminded me of a court jester from medieval times....trying to make everyone it was.

A while later I learned he'd been sold to a mutual friend. I was happy about that. Friend was a good guy......

We learned a short time later he'd been 'sold' 2 more times.....the 'middle' guy starved him to death. the last people to own him before us tried to put weight back on him. As we all know it comes off much quicker than it goes on. We didn't know who he'd been sold to. One night at a friend's house we got talking about horses. They started talking about their paint colt. One thing lead to another and before I knew it, they were talking about Joker. They called him something else...but dun and white paints are not very common...and after putting 2 and 2 together....I figured out it was Joker. They told us where he was...and the next day we drove by to see him as it wasn't far from our house. They'd told us the person they got him from didn't feed him....but I wasn't prepared for how bad he really was terrible. Every rib visible...hip bones sticking out like skyscrapers on a city skyline.....the eyes that once held a twinkle of mischief were dull and lifeless. I started crying.
The next day we went with truck and trailer over to the pasture where he was to catch him.
You can't catch him....they said. He's afraid of people.....they said.
A bucket of grain and 5 minutes was all it took to catch him.....imagine...
He won't get in a trailer....they said...we walked him over here.....
Again.....5 minutes, a bucket of grain and some horse savvy and he was in the trailer.
No chasing smacking him on the butt with a lead rope or lunge whip. He took a cautious step up into the trailer.....waited 5 seconds...and leaped inside. He knew he was going to a better place.
They stood outside the trailer dumbfounded. Jaws on the ground. When DH closed the back gate they started clapping. They were amazed.
Like I was some kind of magician who waved a magic wand and made a halter appear on his head and them made him appear in the trailer.
It was strange.......
So that's how Skelly came to be at our house. And, it should be obvious to all why his name went from Joker to Skeletor.....that's all he was....a skeleton of a was terrible.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Pellet Guns and Horses Don't Mix

Got an interesting call from DH at work today around 1:30-1:45......
one of the horses had been shot. Yes, you read that right, shot.

DH went to pull blankets for the first time in over a week as the afternoon was turning quite warm. He pulled the blanket off my 2 yr old paint and a huge chunk of skin/hair came off with it. Upon further investigation he found a wound with a hole about the size of my pinkie nail. It stunk, should was hot...obvious infection.
Calls me in a panic.
Calm him down....tell him to call the Sheriff (we live in the country) and don't do anything really with it till he gets there so he can see.
DH did just that....

Enter Sheriff J.P.

J.P. takes statement, looks at critter, concurs it's a bullet hole of some sort (we are thinking BB or Pellet gun at this point). Neighbors on the side of the property have kiddos. I made sure to tell DH to ask Mr. Officer to go have a talk with them. If DH or I did it, it would be too personal and get ugly. I'm laid back and nice until someone hurts my critters.

J.P. did go talk with neighbors. He let them know what happened, and that there was a horse in the wooded area between our properties and to not shoot that direction.

J.P. left, and dh dr'd the wound best he could. I sent him to town for antibiotics and tetanus shot.
He had to leave those in a friends mail box as all of this mess had taken a good chunk of time out of the afternoon and he had to get to school.
I grabbed meds on way home and pounded 10 pills to a powdery pulp when I got him and put in his dinner. Took the tetanus shot like a champ....good boy.

Let me introduce you to Skeletor.

Skeletor is a 2yr old paint gelding. Full brother to my black and white pain filly.
We 'rescued' him in January of 2009 from a friend who sold him to a friend of a friend who starved him to death. He was soooo thin and lifeless. I didn't think he was going to make it.
But, over a year later he's packed on some lbs and is full of spunk. He was a big colt who I don't think will grow to his full potential as his lack of good quality food at a young age has stunted his growth. Prove my wrong Skelly, prove me wrong.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


This is what my nose looks like now!

Yes folks, this is what I need.

A co-worker and I decided if we'd remove the majority of my nasal cavum to prevent further rhino-sinusitis.

The procedure would alleviate that severe pain that is being caused by my rhino-sinusitis and prevent further episodes of this terrible sickness.

Said co-worker has graciously volunteered to perform the surgery at no charge. She'll be in the RN program this fall, so I'm safe, right?
Procedure scheduled for after work today.
let you know how it goes!

Post surgery should look something like this

We now return to our regularly scheduled programing!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Friday Fill Ins

1. Pickles, can't have a burger with out them!
2. I really wish I was at home.
3. The snow is not here, I wish it was.
4. I wish I had more time to enjoy things in nature.
5. It's 5:16 PM; that means I'm on my way home.
6. A nice horse for little money is hard to find.

San Antonio Livestock Show and Rodeo Horse Judging Contest

and...the results are in!

My Victoria group has had minimal practice time, and this was either the 2nd to 3rd contest for all the kids, except one girl who just joined us at our Tuesday meeting ( 2/9/10) so she'd only had one meeting and went to her first contest! Way to go!

Victoria County Horse Judging Team
208 entrants in the contest

Cerenity - 34th!
Mackenzie - 95th!
Sydney - 110th
Broc - 129th
Casey - 158th

There were 55 Junior teams and this team ended up 19th!
Way to go guys and girls! You ROCK!

Calhoun County Horse Judging Team

575 Senior Individuals

Kelli - 255th!

208 Junior Individuals

Kristi - 37th!
Karla - 148th!

Way to go to ALL my kiddos! What a great job!!
I'm so proud of you!

Tick Tock, Tick Tock??

Jen and I were talking last night after a super yummy dinner. Talking about Friends, high school, FaceBook.....which lead to a discussion about babies.
MY co-workers keep telling me TICK TOCK, TICK TOCK. I just turned 29. I have many things I want to do yet before I feel I'll be ready to put my life aside, and dedicate 18 plus years to raising a little one. I believe Jen and I are on the same page here.

We did, however.....decide how to split the kiddos up.
I have a hang up on the first 2 years. The up all night screaming, bottles, diapers....clingy needy stuff. Jen, on the other hand isn't looking forward to the 2 - 5 year stage. I'll gladly take that on. So.....she's going to graciously take on the first 2 years, and I'll take on the next 3 years!! I think that'll work out well! Don't you?
Jen and I used our interpersonal expectations and came to a sound, solid decision on the important matter at hand!! :)

Here is some information on getting pregnant "later in life"

Pregnancy After 35
How Does Age Affect Fertility?
As women reach their thirties, they experience a decline in fertility. Furthermore, complications during pregnancy are more common when women reach age 35. Age-related decline in fertility may be due, in part, to the following:
A decrease in the number and health of the eggs to be ovulated.
Changes in the hormones resulting in altered ovulation.
Fewer number of eggs.
A decrease in sperm counts.
A decrease in the frequency of intercourse.
The presence of other medical and gynecologic conditions, such as endometriosis, which may interfere with conception.

Pregnancy After Age 35, Is It Safe?
While advances in medical care can help women over age 35 have safer pregnancies than in the past, infertility and pregnancy complications for this age group are higher than for younger women. If you have decided to delay having a child, you should understand the risks associated with this so you can take precautions to minimize risks and improve your chances for a healthy pregnancy and child.

Pregnancy After Age 35, Does the Risk Birth Defects Increase?
The risk of giving birth to a child with a birth defect does increase as the mother's age increases. This is probably due to abnormal division of the egg, called nondisjunction. This leads to unequal chromosomes at the end of division. The traditional age at which a woman is considered to be at high risk for chromosomal abnormalities is 35. Approximately 1 in 1,400 babies born from women in their 20's have Down syndrome; it increases to about 1 in 100 babies born with Down syndrome from women in their 40s.

Pregnancy After Age 35, Will the Risk of Miscarriage Increase?
Studies show that the risk of miscarriage (loss of a pregnancy before 20 weeks gestation) is 12% to 15% for women in their 20s and rises to about 25% for women at age 40. The increased incidence of chromosomal abnormalities contributes to this increased risk of miscarriage in older women.

Pregnancy After Age 35, What Other Problems can Arise?
Chronic health problems, such as diabetes or high blood pressure, are more common in women in their 30s and 40s. Be sure to get these conditions under control before you become pregnant, since they pose risks to both you and your baby. Careful medical monitoring, begun before conception and continued throughout your pregnancy, can reduce the risks associated with these conditions.
High blood pressure and diabetes can develop for the first time during pregnancy, and women over the age of 30 are at increased risk. If you are pregnant and over age 35, this makes it especially important that you get early and regular prenatal care to ensure early diagnosis and proper treatment.
Stillbirth (delivery of a baby that has died before birth) is more common in women over age 35. Older women are also more likely to have low-birth weight babies (weighing less than 5.5 pounds at birth).
Cesarean birth is also slightly more common for women having their first child after age 35.

Pregnancy After Age 35, How Can I Increase My Chances of Having a Healthy Baby?
Good health prior and during pregnancy will help you reduce your risk of complications. Here are some general recommendations.
Be sure to get enough folic acid in your diet. The current recommendation for women of childbearing age is to take a daily supplement containing at least 0.4 mg. of folic acid, in addition to consuming foods naturally rich in folic acid. Folic acid is naturally contained in leafy green vegetables, dried beans, liver and some citrus fruits.
Limit your caffeine consumption. Do not have more than 300 mg. of caffeine per day. The caffeine content in various drinks depends on the beans or leaves used and how it is prepared. An 8-ounce cup of coffee has about 150 mg on average while black tea has about 80 mg of caffeine. A 12-ounce glass of caffeinated soda contains anywhere from 30-60 mg of caffeine. Remember, chocolate contains caffeine -- the amount of caffeine in a chocolate bar is equal to 1/4 cup of coffee.
Maintain a healthy, well-balanced diet and eat a variety of foods to get all the nutrients you need. Choose foods high in starch and fiber. Make sure you are getting enough vitamins and minerals in your daily diet. Eat and drink at least 4 servings of dairy products and calcium-rich foods a day, choose at least one source each of Vitamin C, Vitamin A and folic acid every day.
Exercise regularly. Review your exercise program with your health care provider. Generally, you may continue your normal exercise routine throughout pregnancy unless you are instructed to decrease or modify your activities.
Don't drink alcohol during pregnancy and don't use any medications unless recommended by your doctor.
Don't smoke during pregnancy.
In addition, be sure to obtain prenatal care, especially early in your pregnancy. The first eight weeks are especially critical in your baby's development. Early and regular prenatal care (health care during pregnancy) can increase your chances of having a healthy baby.
Regular appointments with your health care provider throughout your pregnancy are important to monitor your health and prevent or control any problems that develop during pregnancy. In addition to medical care, prenatal care includes education on pregnancy and childbirth, plus counseling and support.
Pregnancy After Age 35, What Types of Prenatal Tests Should I Have?
Because women over age 35 are more likely to have certain problems during pregnancy, the following tests may be recommended. These tests can help detect disorders before, during, and after your pregnancy. Some of these tests require appropriate genetic counseling, including a detailed discussion regarding the risks and benefits of the procedure(s). Whether you choose to have the tests is up to you. Talk to your health care provider to find out if any of these tests are right for you.

Pregnancy After Age 35, What Types of Prenatal Tests Should I Have? continued...
Ultrasound: a test in which high-frequency sound waves are used to produce an image of your baby. Ultrasound is used early in pregnancy to determine viability (if the baby is in the uterus and if the baby's heart is beating), the presence of more than one fetus, and to determine your baby's due date or gestational age (the age of the fetus). Later in pregnancy, ultrasound may be used to see how the baby is doing, to determine placenta location and the amount of amniotic fluid around the baby.
Quad Marker Screen: a blood test in which substances in the blood sample are measured to screen for problems in the development of the fetus' brain, spinal cord, and other neural tissues of the central nervous system (neural tube) such as spina bifida or anencephaly. Neural tube defects occur in 1 or 2 out of every 1,000 births. The quad marker screen can detect approximately 75-80% of open neural tube defects.
The quad marker screen can also detect genetic disorders such as Down syndrome, a chromosomal abnormality. The quad marker screen can detect approximately 75% of Down syndrome cases in women under age 35 and over 80% of Down syndrome cases in women age 35 years and older.
The quad marker screen may be performed between the 15th and 20th weeks of pregnancy.
First Trimester Screen: A newer test done between weeks 10-14 detects the presence of 2 markers in a blood sample in conjunction with an ultrasound to measure the thickness of the back of the fetus' neck. It tests for chromosomal abnormalities, like Down syndrome. It is essentially as accurate as the quad marker screen but results can be obtained earlier in the pregnancy.
Amniocentesis: Amniocentesis, also called an amnio, is a procedure in which a small amount of amniotic fluid is removed from the sac surrounding the fetus and tested for birth defects. While it does not detect all birth defects, it can be used to detect sickle cell disease, cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, Tay-Sachs disease, or Down syndrome if the parents have a significant genetic risk.
Amniocentesis can also detect certain neural tube defects (where the spinal cord or brain don't develop normally) such as spina bifida and anencephaly. Because ultrasound is performed at the time of amniocentesis, it may detect birth defects that are not detected by amniocentesis (such as cleft palate, cleft lip, club foot, or heart defects). There are some birth defects, however, that will not be detected by either amniocentesis or ultrasound.
Chorionic Villus Sampling(CVS): a test in which a small sample of cells (called chorionic villi) is taken from the placenta where it attaches to the wall of the uterus. Chorionic villi are tiny parts of the placenta that are formed from the fertilized egg, so they have the same genes as the fetus. If you have certain risk factors, you may be offered CVS as a way to detect birth defects during early pregnancy. CVS requires appropriate genetic counseling, including a detailed discussion regarding the risks and benefits of the procedure.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Blood Type

I got my letter from the Red Cross stating that I have

O Positive
Your blood type is very important because it can potentially be transfused to any patient with a positive blood type. O positive blood is also very common, so more people with your type are in need of transfusions.
The best donation for your blood type is double red cells.* By donating double red cells, you can give two units of these potentially lifesaving cells at one time. Double red cell donation is a special automated process.
Automation allows you to donate certain components of your blood in larger amounts. During an automated donation, your blood is drawn into a machine which separates the needed component from the rest of the blood. The final component is collected in a donation bag, while the rest of the blood is returned to you.
To schedule your double red cell donation, call 1-800-GIVE-LIFE

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

For Hunter in Training

Based on your most recent HM posts you deserve this!!!

Funny Test

Take THIS your results in the comments all means, please do!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Where I find myself, lately

Minimal posts this week, I know.

I find myself in a not so happy place these days.

My Cas won't co-operate. My husband won't co-operate. I don't like my job, while I am grateful to have one. The weather isn't co-operating. And I just feel pretty much blach!
I'm normally an optimist. My glass is 1/2 full, not 1/2 empty. There is sunshine on the other side of the clouds, things WILL get better. So, please excuse the gloom and doom while I vent a little bit here. Maybe it will make me feel better....and maybe, just MAYBE some of my blog friends will kick my rump into a better place huh??

Casper - He won't get excited about doing ANYTHING. The ONLY thing we haven't tried yet are SPEED events - Casper has NO get up and go anyway, so no way would he like speed events - cow events - insert picture of me hands on the reins heels drug into the ground being drug water skiing style to the 'cattle arena'. I am SO against Casper doing anything cattle related that my blood boils, steam pours from my ears and my face turns lobster red just thinking about it.
He doesn't have the movement for western pleasure or hunter under, he's not compact enough for trail (or at least not yet), he will grudgingly doing showmanship pattern but it's a push to get him to do it, and last but not least, he plows THRU fences, not over them. He won't lift his front end enough and tuck up those legs to clear the fences. Plows through them :( So, my plans and dreams of making it to the AQHA world show with Cas are slowly but surely slipping and twisting down in to the drain where all impossible and unattainable dreams go.

DH- We won't talk about DH too much. Other than I just wish he'd GROW up and get his SHIT together!

Job - Hummm, the job. It's a job. I'm not excited about going to work every day (but are there really people out there who are?). I have an hour drive one way (maybe if it wasn't so far it wouldn't be so bad). I am fortunate enough to work for an agent who's been in the business a long time and we are not an office that has to sell, sell, SELL. We are more of a servicing office. We take care of our policy holders and do new quotes when people call or come in. We do ask friends and family if they'd like quotes, but don't push. I could NOT work in an office where I had to sell a lot. I'm not a sales person. I don't have that used car salesman mentality. That's just not me.
What is me? I'm not too sure! I've tried many things....and can't seem to find my 'place'.

Weather- It's just been blach here. Rain, rain, and more rain. All the rain we'd needed this summer we've gotten this winter. It's muddy, nasty, yucky. Can't do anything outside at our house with our rubber boots. We had 2 days of sunshine and now it's back to nasty rainy, cloudy yucky! I know, I'm from the north! But, at least in the north it's full out winter. Here in South Texas it's about 1/2 winter - just the nasty part.

DH will be done with school soon, and I'm contemplating going to college. But for what? Which direction should I go? Too many options, and not being sure what I want to do I'm not sure that it wouldn't just be a waste of time and money to get a degree and not use it?
Decisions, decisions.

Or, I could do what I told DH I was doing instead of coming home Friday night...Running away and joining the Circus!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


Jen can't get to the computer.....well, I'm sure she CAN but she's SOOOO busy that she can't!

Here is a bit of an update.....

She arrived Monday to find a bit of chaos and un-organization.
A few of the others were running late and the MEETING they had to be there for at 4pm got postponed.

I'll let Jen fill you in on all the details....but.....

Ransom decided in his usual fashion to NOT eat!
Called her vet who said try some probiotics.
Something about the stuff in it causes their tummy's to calm down and relax and eat. :)
SO, Ransom started eating and Jen calmed down quickly!

She's supposed to ride today......her slot is 1-6 I keep your fingers crossed for her that all goes well. She's the only English ride of the whole event....
Can't wait for her blog details, but just wanted to let those who follow her blog know she's doing well @ HorseMaster Julie Goodnight.
Oh, Jen said Julie seems "real nice" and really "trains the horses".

Feelin Yucky!

We've had TERRIBLE weather, and everyone is getting sick!
Myself included. Yep, that's right. She who NEVER gets sick got sick!
Missed 2 days of work (hate that) and still feel not 100% up to par.

That being said....

Had long conversation with our trainer on Saturday.
WE know Cas isn't going to cut in it WP....his gaits are not slow enough nor is he a peanut pusher! I'm happy he's not a peanut pusher. I hate that wp fad.
I was HOPING he'd be able to do some HUS....but we don't feel he has the height and scope to make it there.
Pattern classes - We had HOPES for pattern classes! But, western pattern classes are getting now where they expect WP movement and precise completion of movements. and in trail they are squeezing obstacles and maneuvers into such small spaces - Cas doesn't like moving in a small space. He's a big horse....
He's not 'good enough' to make an amateur horse - as he's a stallion I can't show in Novice Amateur -
We tossed around the idea of making him an "open show stallion" No offense to anyone I don't want to deal with most of the 'open show' crowd as far as breeding goes.

Our last ditch effort? Jumping. We are going to see if Cas likes Jumping. Oh yeah, and cows too. DH insists on seeing if he likes cows.
SO....Mary is going to start working on some ground polls and cavaletti and see if we can get him over some x rail's soon.
So...keep you posted!! Cross your fingers!