"Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby, to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion. It seizes a person whole and once it has done so, he/she will have to accept that his life will be radically changed." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Milwaukee August randomness

Mader's 2 liter beer boot.

Rob hard at work. No, he didn't share.

I was hoping he would drink all of it so I could use it as a goldfish bowl boot.
Sunday morning at the Wisconsin State Fair.

I'm guessing the body builders don't enjoy chocolate covered bacon, fried pb&j, or Krispy Kreme cheeseburgers.  (I only ate one piece of bacon and the pb&j.)

Ummm, ok.  Little kids asked their parents if they could pay to slide out of the pig.  Only at the Wisconsin State Fair.

My birthday present - new running boards!  This truck will be awesome by the time I'm done with it.

Here's an adaptation of what my work day is like according to the Wisconsin State Fair goats.

Dan and Dan.


It only took 26 years for me to break something.

Really long story short, I was dismounting off Tyler the Friday of Silverwood when my right foot stretched over a rock.  By Monday, my foot looked horrible and didn't feel so great.  Rob went to the doc with me and the initial look at 3 x-rays didn't show anything.  However, the return phone call I got an hour later said otherwise.  Rob drove me  back to the doctor to get a splint and crutches.  Needless to say I was pissed.  Rob's a saint (he doesn't read this blog so I can say that.)  I yelled the entire drive home about all the stuff I couldn't do because of a 1mm break below my big toe that I can't see on the x-ray. 

I don't do well with crutches and  I'm not very coordinated to begin with.  Thank goodness by Tuesday afternoon I was off crutches and in a walking boot after seeing the podiatrist.  Rob was pretty happy about not having to carry my purse around anymore.  I could do almost everything but drive.  The boot doesn't fit between the brake and center consul.  With lots of ibuprofen, ice, and the boot over two weeks the foot is almost back to normal.  I go to the doctor's on Tuesday for one last check, but I'm expecting a good report.

I didn't ride for the first week of the boot and only twice the second week.  That was horrendous!  Kira rode Tyler almost daily on the flat.  She worked him and he felt amazing when I rode on Thursday.  Charles rode Tyler last Friday over fences.  I missed it due to work, but I heard it was a battle.  Tyler refused to participate, but Charles finally got through to him.  Yesterday, a week later, Charles warmed Tyler up and showed me what our rides should and could be like.  What a difference!  Tyler remembered everything Charles taught him last week and we had a great ride.  I hadn't jumped in 2 weeks and it was easy and fun!  Jumping Tyler is never easy, but always fun.  I really appreciated it.  

The boot.  It's better than crutches, but miserable in humidity.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Silverwood HT Aug 6 - 8

Tyler and I completed our first mid-west horse trial.  A two day event even!

Friday morning I went up to the barn to pack up the trailer and get us ready for the weekend in Camp Lake, WI.  I drove Tyler and Finn, a boarder's horse going to his first event, to Silverwood after lunch.  Anne stayed home for the weekend to help with the barn and Charles drove down to Silverwood each day since he was competing Finn.  

We unpacked, set up the stalls, walked the cross country course, rode around, and then packed the boys in for the night.  It was after I rode that I hurt my foot.  I landed on a rock when I dismounted and essentially, my foot wrapped around that rock in a manner it should not have.  

I stayed at a local hotel for the weekend.  How odd that I felt uncomfortable in a hotel!  The Doubletree Milwaukee really has become like home.

Our ride times on Saturday were 11am and 3pm for dressage and XC.  Charles and I were in the same division.  We did our morning chores, washed Tyler again, finished braiding both horses, and got ready for our rides.  Tyler had become VERY attached to Finn.  Our dressage was kind of accurate.  Tyler was distracted by his wanting to find Finn.   A 43.8 was a gift score and put us in last place, but within a rail or two of many riders.

The XC course was great!  I really liked it when I walked it.  There was a coop, bank, wishing well, log and hill complex, hedge, rail and ditch, barrels, and roll tops.  It was a fun course with more max fences than not.  

The first 4 fences road great.  The fifth fence was the rock pile under a log.  It took it for granted at Tyler ran out to the left.  I can't leave my guard down for a minute!  He circled around and jumped it without a thought.  We were running to make time.  I've never run that fast around a XC course before and I loved it!  I wish we could go that fast each time.  Optimum time was 5:09 and we went in 5:22.  The refusal didn't help us move up the standings like I had hoped.

A nice addition to the day was that my friends Diane and Donna from work came to see us!  Donna has heard about Tyler and what we do for years now and it was cool to show her in person what we do.  Diane is an avid rider and it was nice to have her support and a helping hand around.

Saturday night I fell asleep early at the hotel after taking care of the boys and tucking them in for the night.

Sunday morning brought rain. It started about half way through the Training division's stadium round.  There were a few moments of lightning and the jumping stopped.  Tyler and I jumped near the end of the rain.  He was great!  The rain didn't bother either of us.  Get this, Tyler rubbed a back rail of an oxer on a long spot!  The rail stayed up.  We had a solid round and I was very, very proud of him.

Because of the rain, we had to cancel XC schooling.  Charles was going to let us go around the Novice course so I was really bummed.  We packed up to head home just so we could unpack everything.

It was a great experience and I'm glad we went even if we didn't place well.  It's always good to get Tyler and I out to new places and jump new things.

Photos of the weekend:
My Facebook photos
The Professional Photos

Good company.

Birthday celebrations should last several days.  Mine did!  I flew back to Milwaukee on the Monday after my birthday.  It was a bit of a hassle with a canceled flight, but I made it in time for drinks!  Danielle made me a lovely pink velvet cake and we met the boys at Ryan Braun's waterfront restaurant.  Ryan Bruan is an outfielder for the Milwaukee Brewer's.  We sat out on the deck and enjoy the Milwaukee River at night.  Rob, Detroit, Ramon, and Julian came out with us.  
Danielle and I at Braun's.

 Rob and Ramon
It had been nearly a week since I'd seen my Tyler-Rose and we got right back to prepping for Silverwood.  We rode our dressage test for the first time.  At the very least we should be accurate with our test.  I rushed home, changed, and picked Danielle up so we could go see Inception.  It was a good movie.  Rarely do I go to the theater to see a movie and Inception was worth it.   

For the second Wednesday in a row, Rob and Ramon both came up to the barn.  Rob's really catching on to how things work around the barn.  He gets Tyler out of the stall, in the cross ties, and grazes Tyler during is cool down after working.  Tyler and I did a lot more work on our test.  Then Rob rode!  I was quite impressed with Tyler and Rob.  Rob caught on quickly to steering, but not so much on how to move Tyler forward.  They walked over poles, trotted a few steps, did some simple patterns, and called it a day.   Tyler's super careful with new riders and I think it's adorable.

 Me trying to keep up with Rob and Tyler.

Thursday was my last opportunity at home to work on the test.  I wasn't thrilled with Tyler's movements, but we knew our test and I felt good about that.  Thankfully it was a peaceful evening with the work crew.  We played cards for a few hours.  So I shouldn't say it was a peaceful or quiet evening, but it was laid back.  I think 5 or 6 of us sat around.  Some drink, some don't.  We know each other well enough that we can have real fun.  It's a great dysfunctional traveling family.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

There's no place like home.

I took a long weekend trip home for my birthday.  I left work Thursday morning at 10:30 and was in Pennsylvania by 4.  I visited quickly with my parents and headed to Harvest View for a lesson on Perfectly Patrick.  And perfect he was!  It's tough for me to hop on another horse and jump around.  It took me months to really feel comfortable navigating Parker.  Patrick was his saintly self and packed me around anyway.  The last time I rode Patrick was last March, so it was a perfect birthday present from Cindy!  

 Patrick and I - March 2009

It was wonderful to see the HVS crew.  I had miss them terribly.  Besides the office, I spend a majority of my time at HVS.  Amazingly, I even remembered to take the cheese curds home for Gale. 

The real reason I went home was to get my hair done Friday morning.  Ha, I'm kidding, sorta.  After my appointment, I headed out to HVS again to see Cindy and Delight work with Sarah.  Delight has really improved in 6 weeks and he looked fabulous before.  It was nice to catch up with Sarah and Cindy.
Dad needed help moving furniture and I was expecting my college BFF, Jackie, so I didn't stay long at HVS.  Jenna and I hadn't seen Jackie in at least a year.  We had a lot of fun!  We talked the entire time to catch up.  The three of us went to dinner at Rockwell's (yes, we shared RhinoFries) and then went to the casino.  It was a gorgeous night for horse racing and we watched a few races.  We didn't win any money, no thanks to Sylvia's Sweetart.  LClark, her boyfriend, and friend Lauren joined us later on for some penny or even 2 cent slots!  It was a good evening.
 Jenna, Jackie, and Me at the track

Me and LClark

My mom's name is Sylvia and she loves sweet tarts.  We lost money on that horse.

Saturday was boat day!  I worked around the yard/house on Saturday morning before Mom and Dad picked me up.  We ended up floating in the river until we were prune-y.  The weather took a break for my weekend home and it wasn't 100 degrees with extreme humidity.  

Sunday morning was my sleep catch up time.  Jenna and I went to my grandparents' house to see them, Aunt Gina, Aunt Lisa, and Cousin Gillian.  I haven't seen any of them since Mother's Day!  We talked about the family vacation in September.  It'll be the week of Labor Day in Sea Isle City, NJ and right on the ocean!  I'm working from home that week and may work from NJ for a day or two if the weather cooperates.

Jenna and I left for my dinner with Mom and Dad.  We feasted on steaks and ice cream cake.  My traditional birthday dinner.  Oddly enough, Dad bought me sidewalk chalk as a gift.  I brought it to work and we plan to terrorize the poolside and office parking lot.  

Monday traveling reminded me why I don't like weekly travel.  Tyler received a good report from my weekend away.  He got extra treats for being well behaved.