Thursday, October 30, 2008

The One I Forgot To Mention...

Zydeco has returned home to us here at The Ranch. You'll notice, in the picture above, how the trailer appears to be carrying two horses.

The Thoroughbreds around here are multiplying.

My mother purchased a horse on September the twenty first. His name is Summer Game, and he is a lovely, button-nosed dark bay Thoroughbred. He spent five years of his life racing, another two jumping, and now he is going to learn the fine art of dressage. Come Hell or high water, that damn horse is going to put his nose down.

But first he must befriend Tia.

Summer spent the first month being owned by SuperNan living at my coach's stable with Zydo. There they had a grand time, both of them having the crap beaten out of them by that dastardly Chestnut Trakheiner named Stetson. Apparently trauma can cause two horses to come together, and Zydo and Summer seem to have a strong, well functioning relationship thus far.

Summer's introduction to life here at The Ranch consisted of walking into the barn, looking amicably at Tia, and being greeted in return by her up on her haunches, screaming at the top of her lungs and flailing with her front feet. Seeing as I, too, have recently come to know contact with Tia's dainty hooves, I must say that I commiserate.

Watching the order of horses at pasture is quite entertaining. Horses choose who is the king of the castle, and who takes a beating depending on each of their personalities. Tia has decided that she will be the boss. She must have one gelded Thoroughbred on each side of her at all times, or hooves will fly. Neither may the Thoroughbreds communicate with each other at any time, lest there be fisticuffs -- Arabian style.

Life at The Ranch has been slightly more complicated (We now own twelve horse blankets, as opposed to just nine, for example) and we shall all ride the winter together on the backs of our fine steeds, or land sweetly in the snowbanks here in CowTown.

Time will tell.

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Monday, October 27, 2008

When All Else Fails: Have A Baby!

My grandmother has been tremendously ill these last couple weeks. I have been very worried for her, as we all have. She has pneumonia and congestive heart failure. Only forty-eight hours ago, the doctors were talking about putting her on a ventilator.

It seems that the medications and care she's recieved in the Intensive Care Unit have done her well, and today when I arrived at her hospital room she was sitting up in bed looking like her old self again.(A skinny, frailer version of her old self, but her old self nonetheless). I must admit that I gasped when I saw her and said "Grandma, you're back to being you!" To this she responded that she didn't have time for a funeral, and that she had too much left to do before she went. Truer words have never been spoken.

My grandmother and I were just talking about nothing, shooting the shit, so to speak, when I mentioned the pets in my life. I was simply stating that, once my current dog leaves me, I won't be looking for another as dogs are quite the hassle. Grandma then said: "You should get something smaller, that you could hold here." And she motioned to her shoulder.

So I said: "Oh, Grandma. I've tried having cats. They hate me and go insane before trying to eat me while I sleep."

And Grandma said: "Oh, for God's sake. I wasn't talking about a damn cat. I was talking about a baby."

I must say that I was stopped completely in my tracks. Here I was, talking about my dog with a woman I love dearly, when she dropped this complete bomb on me.

I NEED TO HAVE A BABY??!?!?!!???

A Baby?

My grandmother was full of her old self today. She was precocious and vivacious, just the way I've always known her, and for this I am very, very glad. I'm not entirely sure that I'm going to run out and have a baby in the fit of glee I'm feeling this moment, but I have to say that almost anything is worth having my Grandma back to the way she was only a couple weeks ago.

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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Halloween Woes....

I'm mourning the loss of a really, really good costume idea tonight.

Mal, the infamous, wonderful Mal, has invited me to a Halloween party with her. The last time I partook in something like this was 2005. No, really. 2005. In 2006 I had completely lost my mind and my brother had left for Afghanistan, and last year I had the crap kicked out of me the night before Halloween. So this year?

Totally Halloweening it up. Like it's my job.

I wanted to go as a sexy cowgirl. (Mal and I have noticed that, as you age, Halloween becomes less about being something and more about being a sexy something. We briefly discussed going simply as Sexy ["What are you being this year?" "Sexy." "Sexy what?" "Just Sexy."] but we nixxed that idea in fear of being mistaken for actual hookers.)

So today, I searched high and low throughout the Big City for cowboy boots, which I've sort of wanted for a few years anyways. I thought if I could find some in the neighborhood of a hundred dollars, I would suck it up and buy them. Cowboy boots are a lifetime investment, after all.

Many of them cost near FOUR HUNDRED DOLLARS. Some were in the three hundred dollar range, and the rest were well over a hundred and fifty.

After I picked myself up off the floor, I looked at some second hand stores and came out empty handed.

New plan?

I'm going as Jill Henselwood.

Ok, I get that none of my costume ideas are necessarily inventive, but I'm not really an inventive person and I don't feel that I should be judged as a result of it. Regardless, I'm going to a social function on a social day of the year!

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Friday, October 17, 2008

Kicked! By A Horse!

My parents have left The Ranch to foray into the world of twin babies and over-exhuberant Chocolate labs. As such, my brother and I have been maintaining the care of Tia; everybody's favorite horse.

I've spoken here about Tia's craziness before, and this week has been no exception. She seems to have a love and a fondness for my father, which tears my heart up and makes me want to squeeze her because it is just so damn cute. However, it would be nice if others could care for her without risking life or limb.

Tia does this thing that is kind of hard to describe. It is like with every step she takes, an explosion goes off in her feet and she must not make contact with the ground at any point in time while one is leading her. Today she was cavorting and carrying on while I got her out of the barn and then BAM. She was off like a shot.

I managed to reel her in and continue our march (Our hopping spree? Our dancing fest?) across the yard. Unfortunately, the flag pole (or the wind, or a blade of grass, or her own shadow, or who knows? The voice of God?) made her freak out again. At this point she jumped, kicked me with a hind leg, and then reared high in the air. Of course, high in the air is a relative term here, as Tia is only a petite little mare.

I've found with Tia that quiet, gentle talking in a calm voice is the way to go; however, this morning?

Well, she HAD JUST FRIGGIN' KICKED ME. So my quietness, my gentleness, and calmness sort of left me for a moment as I hollered for her to stand up and act sane.

Oddly, this command seemed to have an effect for about three seconds as we made it the rest of the way to the pasture.

I'm sure the bruise is on it's way, but guess what else is on it's way?

My mother's Saturn Vue, with both my parents in it.



Sunday, October 12, 2008

On My New Job...

When I started my last job sometime last July or August, there was a position there that I wanted. Last December, I made it my goal to get that position, and as of September, I got it. One day after receiving official notice of my promotion and raise, I handed in my two week's notice.

Employee of the year?


Explaining my reasons for giving up my new position would take days. I could write a novel on the reasons I had to leave, and another on the reasons it felt like it was killing me to do so. The only way I can do it is to relate it back to the training of horses.

There is such a thing as overfacing young horses. Too much, too soon, too fast is the logic behind it. You need to train and work, but you also need to just chill. In a single year, I went from a person who had never worked with troubled children to a person who was supposed to manage the programming in working with said youth. Other parts of the job included managing certain aspects of the staffing. There were some other responsibilities as well.

I am twenty four years old. I am young, I am friendly, and I aim to be amicable in all interactions I have with people when I am interacting with them. As such, telling people what to do and when is not exactly my strong point. And as the promotion I was to get loomed in my mind, I knew I couldn't do it. I had several opportunities to prove myself and test the waters; I tested those waters and generally came out on top. However, as a long term position, there is no way I could continue there.

So I moved on.

I've been going to work for the last couple of weeks with a sense of freedom in my mind. I no longer have to tell people what to do. I am no longer the person that other people turn to in times of high stress. I am no longer the one who has to make decisions, and I LOVE going to work and being told what to do.

Life is generally looking up right now. At my new job, I also make a considerably higher wage, and as such, I'm looking forward to the freedoms I will have as a person with more than zero dollars in her bank account. The dollar signs are jingling before my eyes: A new saddle? A new pair of riding breeches? A new car come the spring, or perhaps another horse to add to the herd? Jeans that fit me appropriately? A few more university classes so that I can work towards my master's degree?

Sometimes I feel like this life will never work out the way I want it to work out; other times, I feel on top of the world knowing that little, itsy bitsy baby steps are all the ones I need to take so that I can work towards something more in my life.

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