Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Even Newer Changes!

I really must become a little more creative in my titling, eh? But seriously, the baby was a big change, but NOW we are moving all three girls to a new barn. We have had many issues over the past years at boarding barns, but we've come to realize that is par for the course. It's just a matter of what you are willing to put up with and when do you put your foot down. Really we reached that point at our current barn before the baby was born and when everyone would not keep their hands off our horse and stay out of her stall. But, we decided recently to start looking again for a new place, hopefully one that was closer. Our current barn is about 35-40 minutes away depending on traffic. The cost was ok, but the drive (and certain people who refuse to leave our horses alone!) have gotten to the point of being enough.

I am a firm believer in the fact that things happen for a reason. If you really really want something and it doesn't happen, it probably was not meant to be.

Upon looking in the usual places that one would for a boarding barn, we found an ad that simply stated "6 stall barn with 7 fenced acres for lease. $500.00" and gave one of the suburbs of our city. I thought hmmmmmmm, sounds interesting. My husband started calling, but wouldn't leave a message. Finally I told him to leave a freaking message!! He did, the woman called him right back, they talked, he got some additional information, and he set up a time last Saturday to go have a look-see.


As we pulled in I almost fainted. I had initially thought to myself, hmmm, 7 acres, 6 stall barn, only $500, it's probably a trash pit. I was completely wrong. It is immaculate. The woman used to breed warm bloods for dressage and jumping. She would actually import studs from Germany for her breeding program. She decided she was getting to be a certain age that all she wanted to do was ride and show. She loved the babies, and loved breeding, but her husband and son did not really help her, and the taking care of the property and her horses was just getting to be too much and she just wanted to show. So this summer she sold off all but one of her horses, and is boarding at a facility close by that has all the goods for dressage and jumping competition. After a few months of looking at her gorgeous fenced in property, she thought to herself, what a waste. So she placed the ad. We came along and saw it, went and looked, and voila! We are now the proud lessor's of this gorgeous place. (I will definitely have to take pictures) She has an outdoor fenced riding arena and the rest of the property is fenced off into three pastures (in addition to fencing surrounding the property). Two are side by side, and the other is just the back, probably 1/3, of the property in a huge pasture. The pastures are thick, lush and green. She said she would turn her horses out year round, leaving them out continuously through the summer. She is leaving us all of her heated water buckets, pasture tubs, storage lockers (for tack) and everything. Manure removal (but not stall cleaning :)) and electricity is included, and she has city water. Between saving on gas, and not having the headache of other people, I think it's going to work juuuuuust fine.

Sounds like a dream come true, huh?

There is no lease, just a handshake agreement. She said if we are unhappy, we are free to leave whenever, but she hopes we will enjoy it and stay. I am going forward with the thoughts that it will prepare us as if we have them on our own property. Like a test run. If we figure out we can't handle it or we don't like it, we can always go back to (eek) boarding again. I figure worst case scenario, we come out even (while we save on board and gas, we now have to buy our own hay, grain and shavings). Best case scenario we come out ahead and save money. During the summer (and a lot of spring and fall) we will save drastically on shavings and hay because they will be in the pastures all the time.

I'm excited, can you tell?? We give our notice tomorrow to our current barn. Although only 7 days written notice is required, I think we had verbally agreed to give 30, just to be courteous. And we are nothing if not courteous to everyone there, even with all the issues.

So that's MY great news! Any tips or money saving ideas, I am all ears! lol We are looking forward to it though.

Baby is now 7 months old and she is only a few inches shorter than my mare! She's going to have daddy's height and mom's stocky build. I will have to take some more pictures and post them of all three girls when I get a chance. She's leggy and has a NICE hind end. The guys at the ranch saw pictures and said she's bigger and stockier than some of their yearlings!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Big Changes

Wow have things changed since September 2009. I know that I dropped off the face of the earth rather sudden, and I do apologize for that. You get certain feelings, or rather lack thereof, when you lose your job, go on numerous interviews and still have nothing for almost a year. Thankfully, I was able to finally get a job when one of my boss' decided to ask my ex-boss better qustions while interviewing me. She asked the right questions, got the right answers and I was hired. I have been gainfully employed now about a year and a half (yay!). Needless to say, things are picking back up (finally) and I'm trying to get myself back on track. Please don't think of me as a fairweather friend....I just didn't want to be all doom and gloom in my posts and that's all they would have been.

News on the horsie front, we have a baby!! Unfortunately, our solid old mare Sis began to have serious breathing problems the winter of 09/10 when it was so frigidly cold. As the weather became more mild, she was ok again, but when it was so humid and hot, she started having the problems so bad she couldn't walk a couple steps and have to stop andn gasp for air. We tried steroid injections to open up her air passage, but the vet said she was too old and it was probably her time. He gave us other treatment options, but with her age, he said everything was too stresfull for her. We made the decision to put her down :(, took a bunch of farewell pictures, cried endlessly, and she's buried at the farm where we board.

I thought we had made the decision to wait on looking at new horses when about 3 months later, a horse presented herself to us. She also came with a little surprise. In April we have a nice, strong, rambunctious little filly. As we board our horses, we got the call about 7:30 in the morning. The barn owners said you got a baby, we don't know what yet because it's running all around and kicking up a storm. Everyone was saying she looked like she was a 3 week old already. Nicely formed, good strong bones, and muscles all over. She's a pistole. We tried thinking of names for about 4 weeks (yes, it took that long) and came up with a few good names, until people would automatically shorten the name as soon as they started using it. We really liked Coconut, but the first words were "awww, Coco!" No. I wanted Cocnut. So eventually we came up with Raelyn. My hubby likes the tv show Justified, and my middle name is Rae, so it just kind of came to that. Here are a few pics :)

We have the funniest video of her a few days after she was born. She loved the sound of her hooves on the stall mats. So every time we were picking through the stall and would push some aside, she would go jumping and running around the stall, kicking her heels up. It was too funny.

Anyhow, I hope everyone I used to spy on (aka visit blogs) is doing good and well and having their own bright spots in their lives. Drop by again some time, and note that I will be doing the same.

(Side note: Laughing Orca Ranch, I have not forgotten you. I had your scrapbook pages done shortly after the quiz, and I have them here still with me. I will get them out to you some day, with an extra treat for your patience with me.)

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