Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Debbie Clinic

Feeding time in the morning....

I left work early today, came home, changed clothes, loaded up my mare, Sera, and hit the road to Beybreze Farm , a Cleveland Bay barn, near Johnson's Corner in Loveland, CO for my 12:30 ride with Debbie Riehl-Rodriguez.

Debbie is a judge and has an eye for detail like you wouldn't believe. When I'm riding, she will tell me I'm correct or stop me from doing something before I've done it... when I'm only thinking it! How does she KNOW?

It's like I'm a poker player with an obvious tell.

I didn't have anyone to tape a segment of my ride, so no video today, tho' it went very well.

Debbie hasn't really liked Sera's canter... it hasn't been balanced enough, through enough, consistent enough. I work and work with hope that the next time I see Debbie, Sera's canter will be better. Nope. Hasn't happened.

THIS time, Debbie says we truly look like a 2nd level horse and rider and Sera's canter is GOOD! Hooray! Progress! She said "wow" at our progress! She told me, "This is really good. Try to come back for these clinics as often as you can, this is really exciting!"

(I think the hock injections and chiropractic work have helped us break through Sera's resistance)

Debbie is always encouraging and helpful, however she's never been "excited" about my ride before. I know I'm moving in the right direction which feels really good...

I won't bore you too much with all the Dressage speak, cuz unless you're into it, it can be a little like watching paint dry. I'm to work on

1. Rein back to make sure Sera is straight and round with good footfalls. (Sera tends to feel boxed in with this movement, stiffens, gets above the bit and comes against my hands)

2. Work on maintaining more collection in the canter on small figures while keeping Sera round and deep. This work is hard so Sera wants to stiffen up and get tense or quick to avoid this much work.

She must learn to accept the contact while moving forward in collection. AND she cannot shuffle along in her canter, I have to work to increase the jump. (oy... so much to think about!)

3. And last but not least, the turn on the haunches needs to be rounder, smaller, more collected and more through.
You are gonna make me work on WHAT?! (poor squinty eyes with a flash going off at her first thing in the morning when she just wants her hay)

Sera worked hard for me, she was wet from her ears to her tail at the end of our ride... I put her cooler on, walked her out, loaded her up, came home, curried her dried sweaty hair, put her to pasture, changed clothes, hoped my "helmet hair" wouldn't offend anyone at work and headed back to the office.


I'm pooped. Nighty nite...

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Happy 101

I received an award from Cheryl and it's given me something to post about today... 10 things that make me happy.
1. Furry Husband - I never thought I'd be married. I liked my independence and doing whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. I'd seen my friends get married and drop off the face of the planet. I truly thought being married would be an awful ball and chain sort of thing, full of misery and unhappy feelings.
And then I met Furry Husband... he was tending bar at the Wynkoop in Denver. I told him a dirty joke and the rest is history. I've never had so much fun and I've never laughed so much with someone. We are a team and I know he has my back just as I'll always have his - no matter how much hair ....
2. Riding - my Dressage riding brings me a deep sense of accomplishment and joy. It's like nothing in this world and when things go well, you have such a rush. This huge animal allowing you to be on it's back and working with you to create this partnership. When things are off or going badly - I can get a bit obsessive about it (OCD anyone?) and it makes me strive to overcome and become better.
3. Animals - my life would be so boring if it weren't for my horses, dairy goats, dogs and cats. I love watching all of them and the things that make them perfectly unique and yet so true to their species and breed.
Where would I be without Buzzer the cat walking across my overly full bladder each morning, the horses medical mysteries, the dogs dragging their cute little butts across our carpet in front of company and my life would most certainly be incomplete without having to go in and fish out baby goats when the does are having trouble kidding in the spring. Who doesn't want their arm covered in afterbirth and placenta?
4. Friends - people to share life's ups and downs with. Wonderful conversation over meals and wine! Sometimes laughing so hard you can't breathe and sometimes hugs and shoulders to cry on. Every person close to me in my life is a gift. I love my friends.
Especially since they all have their own bag o' crazy to bring to the table.... I'm never alone.
5. Food - food makes me happy. Everything about food makes me happy - the smell of spices and ingredients mixing together. The texture of food, the taste of food, the creation of new and yummy nourishing dishes. If I'm eating, you can bet I'm happy.
6. Books - escaping into another world, into other emotions - I can completely lose track of time and place when I'm in the middle of a really good book.
7. Music - memories go hand in hand with music. I can be in the car and hear some song from the 70's and I instantly remember that period of life in my childhood. Songs and music can take me back to my teens, my 20s or particular events in my life. Madonna's Crazy 4 U takes me right back to the first slow dance in high school when a guy touched my butt the very first time in my little 14 yr old life.... GASP!
I can hear a song I haven't heard for 20 years and I remember the words perfectly. How does THAT work? Why do our brains hold onto things like that? Shouldn't it be working on understanding quantum physics or something more important than the lyrics to a George Michael song?
8. Plants - agriculture geeks me out - planting, digging in the dirt, watching things grow...
9. Wine - another fabulous part of agriculture! It's a crop that is harvested... planning and dedication go into each vintage. The grapes take on the flavor of the region, the culture of the people producing it. I look forward to sharing it with friends at the barn, over the dinner table - really anywhere anytime.
10. Dog Training - I really enjoy the way each of my dogs learns, their happy expressions when they understand and the excitement they show when they know it's time to work or play. Especially when I "accidentally" trained Bequia, the cattle dog, to kack Furry Husband in the nuts... makes me laugh every time.
What 10 things make YOU happy?
DebH - you're next.....

Monday, January 25, 2010

Weird lady in a car....

Sunday I loaded Sera up and headed out in the truck/trailer for my weekly lesson. There was a small sedan type of car sitting in the middle of our dirt road. Hmmm? As I passed by - slowly - watching my mirrors cuz it was in the middle of the road, I see a person sorta hunched over with a big floppy hat.

Yeeks. Is the person o.k.?? I was wondering about stopping to check when I see the reverse lights come on and the car begins hightailing it toward me. There is dirt and dust and the car is weaving back and forth in it's haste and since it's going BACKWARDS.

And I'm thinking - whoa - so is this going to end up in some sort of shoot out? When I stop at the stop sign on road 15, is this car going to smash into my trailer? It was really odd to be chased in my "rig" by a car swerving backwards down the road.

I'm watching the car nervously in my mirrors... felt like The Transporter... but with a much less maneuverable vehicle... no sporty BMW to outwit the dangerous follower.

The car backs into a house's driveway, almost falling tail end into the irrigation ditch. I see the cars tires spinning in the dirt, weeds flying and clouds of dust like it's General Lee from the Dukes of Hazzard.... and it comes racing up to my truck and trailer... honking the horn...

I slow down and this lady who doesn't seem quite all the way there asks me if I know where 302 is. No. I don't. She goes on and on about something that was supposed to be left on a bench for her and it was posted on and she doesn't know where 302 is... she's very agitated.

I tried helping her out but she couldn't seem to process anything I said. ? I'm not sure what was going on there. I hope she found her free stuff.

I slowly pulled away and went on to my lesson. There were 40mph winds and it was cold - I was the only rider to show up for the day! Rex said everyone else called to cancel. I'm glad I didn't cuz I had a truly awesome ride.

One of those rides that can carry you for a couple days - Sera was round and supple and submissive with floppy ears - perfectly content in her work. Loved it. I had an e-mail this morning about an opening in a Debbie Riehl-Rodriguez clinic Wednesday... I feel sorta guilty taking off work - but I'm going. Maybe I can get someone to take some video to post?

Hope y'all have a happy, happy Monday....

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Guess who we ran into on our walk....

Furry Husband and I took the pups for a nice long walk Saturday morning and saw a big ol' bird...
We thought it was.... And it WAS - a big ol' bald eagle!

That lil' speck is him flying away after having enough of the gawkers... Geez, can't anyone get a little quiet time without all the paparazzi around here?!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Dog Tricks...

I like to entertain myself in winter by teaching dog tricks... Bequia almost reads your mind she is so smart and learns so fast. Toe learns it but he's more "what's in it for me?" and likes his treats and then there is Sammy who is such a spaz I have to really tone it down and not use my happy voice or he really just can't think.... he still gets treats and praise but it's on a much low-key level.

So far - they know gimme 5 (right paw) and shake (left paw)... I'm teaching them all spin where they turn in a small circle...

Sammy and Toe know how to roll over (Bequia is older and rolling over seems like it's uncomfortable for her so I don't ask her that one anymore tho' she could roll over both ways when she was younger).

Bequia knows how to crawl on her belly, sit up to beg and holds a treat on her nose til you tell her o.k. then she flips it up and catches it.

Toe can skooch... he lays down and moves backwards while in his down.

And Furry Husband has ME trained to fetch him a beer when I'm all done playing with the doggers!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Cheese mistake...

We had our fun friend Ann over for dinner the other night - for our weekly Friday night Cozzola's pizza and killer wine. Ann helped me so much with my little garden square and making our hard packed clay, Deliverance yard look like somethin' OTHER than the setting to someone wanting me to squeal like a pig, that she now has a 'magic cheese container'.

Any time I see this container, it is magically filled with cheese.

I thought I might see that 'magic cheese container' Friday and I wanted to make a fresh batch o' chevre. Spot is our only milking goat right now and she's giving 3-4 lbs of milk a day. I have to save up 3 days worth of milk to make cheese glorious cheese...

Thursday night I pasteurized the milk... only I forgot about the milk in the hot water bath on the stove while I was uncharacteristically torturing myself on the treadmill. Furry Husband normally has my back, only he was in the office working on his laptop. The milk heated up to and right past 160 degrees for pasteurization to over 200!

Well crap-ola.

We hate to pour 3 days of saved milk down the drain... only we weren't sure if this milk would form curd or taste like anything you'd WANT to eat. Shrug. All you can do is try!

We put the chevre starter culture in the milk once it cooled to 86 degrees and we waited. We let the starter culture stay in the cheese longer than recommended because we'd screwed it up this much already... we wanted to let the curd have ample time to form.

When we put the curd into the cheese cloth it was really solid... hardly any whey to it at all. And while it drained all day? The whey was a much smaller amount and completely clear... really odd.... normally it's sort of opaque.

Hmmmm. Dunno 'bout this batch.

We warned Ann when she came over and we moved it from the cheese cloth into her 'magic cheese container'. The texture was not like normal chevre - it was softer - it was almost like thickened cream - like maybe a super soft cream cheese.

And it was super tasty! We dipped our pizza crusts into the cheese and called it a success. Who knew.

When I took Spot to meet her buck, the buck owner and I stood around talking and watching to make sure there was really something going on between Spot and Headliner... you gots to make sure there is "penetration"... and that in itself is so be at a ranch in Livermore CO with some young vet student you've never met, making small talk while your goat is being bred.

I told this guy about a Parmesan I made. It looked like Parmesan, it tasted like Parmesan, smelled like Parmesan but it was so hard that we could barely get any knife thru it. I ended up scrapping it because we just could not cut into that sucker...

He laughed and said someone once told him that whenever you tried to make a cheese, it WILL be cheese. It just might not be the cheese you INTENDED.

Lucky for me, the 250 degree, super pasteurized milk with extra long starter culture exposure was worthy of the 'magic cheese container'!

Saturday, January 16, 2010


We have a mystery at Star's Hollow Farm...

Furry Husband asked if I was getting even with him for the egg joke he played on me.

Picture me blinking eyes, slack jaw and blank look .... Wha? nooooo...?

He moved a hay bale and found 10 blue chicken eggs. All in a pile. We have a blue egg layer but we don't let our chickens out of their pen much and when we do, they keep out of the yard because Toe chases them. We haven't had them out enough for that many eggs ... cuz they lay an egg a day roughly when the days are long and not in winter... so ??

I thought maybe some other kind of bird layed them but they look like chicken eggs.

Furry Husband thinks maybe one of the neighbor's chickens came to live in our hay shed only we haven't seen any stray chickens roaming around.

Mrs. Kravitz thinks a weasel has been hoarding them in our hay pile but we are pretty sure weasels don't hoard eggs - they eat them.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Winter doldrums...

Sorry for not posting... nuthin' much has been going on. Feeding animals, scooping poo from said animals... what goes in must come out.

I'm teachin' the dogs new tricks from my dog trick book and I remember why I don't like training Sammy so much... if he was a human he'd be Sue from SNL. He is SO friggin' excited ALL the time when it's training time.

My back went out again Sunday. WHILE I was riding my mare. That is a first. Geez... am I old or what? It's frustrating and I decided to try going to a personal trainer dude to get exercises for strengthening my lower back and stabilizing my hips. He had me on this inversion machine and kept telling me to "pump my butt - open my butt - make my butt big - like in the movies".

WHAT sort of movie would that be exactly?

After the workout, he did some light massage and acupressure points to release stiff or spasming muscles. Some of these points were on my inner thigh turns out. Like RIGHT IN my inner thigh near my ... my... OH MY!

I snorted and he asked what was the matter. "Um, your hand is in my sweaty crotch!" He said he normally works on "streaky" 300lb plumbers so my sweaty crotch was nuthin'. Yes. Streaky. Glad I'm not in the "streaky" category.

I haven't been man-handled like that since I was in my 20's, pre-marriage...I left the gym wondering, "Did I just cheat on Furry Husband??"

My back didn't hurt anymore but I was crippled for 2 days with screaming muscles from the workout. Today is the first day I can walk without significant pain. Hoo-ray.

Rosso's eye looks like it's getting worse... the cataract looks bigger. The eye specialist said this type of uveitis is easily aggravated so we aren't sure what to do. If the shots meant to decrease the inflammation are going to aggravate the cataract... a lavage sewn into his eyelid will most certainly inflame things... we'll pull blood today to make sure there isn't anything systemic going on.

Heeeyyyyyyy. Wait a cotton pickin' minute.

I had a one-eyed cat for a 18 yrs... and a one eyed bunny for 8 yrs.

Maybe the universe finally noticed all my one-eyed critters died and it's trying to give me another?

Friday, January 8, 2010

Checks and Cataracts....

My very first check from EsScentuals retail store for my goat milk lotion which is on their shelves! Rosso in his stocks waiting for the eye Dr. It was -10 outside. It was warmer inside but certainly not peel your clothes off and stand around in your skivvies sorta warm.

I was bummed cuz there is no definitive answer. He has uveitis... inflammation or low grade infection in that eye. Probably caused by a trauma at some point... like bumping his eye hard on something.
We don't know when it happened cuz like I said before, there hasn't been any squinty eyes or tears or swelling... it could have happened sometime back in September when we first noticed it while we were working on his teeth.
Anyway - the important thing is to stop the inflammation. We don't know if his eye will have recurring bouts of uveitis... esp. if there are no outward clinical signs. The eye doc kept asking if he's been squinting a lot or if there have been tears. Nope and nope.
This makes it harder for me, I'll have to evaluate pupil size by shining a flashlight in his eyes in the dark. When one pupil is smaller than the other, it means there is uveitis.
The eye guy said something about this recurring and the blood barrier breaking down and the eye beginning to act like a lymph node to fight infection only the eye begins to work against itself. If the uveitis can't be stopped, the cataract could grow causing blindness. Or the cataract could grow and turn into glaucoma which means he loses his eye. OR the opposite could happen... his eye could atrophy and wither away into nothing.
We don't know if we can stop this uveitis. The treatment is to inject the eye with antibiotic steriod every 6 weeks for 6 mos. And then monitor....
AND say good-bye to my first check from EsScentuals! Tho' it's why I wanted to create my own lotion biz anyway - to supplement this crazy horse habit I have!
Dun dun duuunnnnn.... the cataract. (the bluish cloud in his eye)

Thursday, January 7, 2010


I received my dog trick book in the mail last night. I am so geeked! I LOVE dog tricks! Especially in the winter when the humans and dogs are getting cabin fever... super way to whittle away the time on cold and dark winter nights.

All tricks are ranked by degree of difficulty - there are tips about issues you might run into with each trick and how to overcome them. Lot of empasis on keeping things super positive and to have patience. She goes into tricks from basic obedience, agility, tracking, retrieving, jumping... and into the classics like beg, shake, roll over.

I told Furry Husband that before he knows it, I'll have Toe balancing on a ball and rolling around the yard this summer.

How suprised are you that he just rolls his eyes at me over his coffee cup?

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Eye trouble...

We woke up today and it was 35... within the hour the temp dropped to 15 with a wind chill of zero, nada, zip. Depends which channel or radio station you listen to.. but I heard a forecast of wind chill -20 and 4-6" of snow. Brrrr!

Rosso has an appointment tomorrow with the Animal Eye Center. He had an ulcer on his eye maybe 2 years ago after a windy day. Something had bounced off his eye and injured it.

I put the eye drops in umpteen times a day along with the ointments and it healed up. You could barely, barely see a tiny pin prick of scar tissue on his eye.

This fall when I had his teeth floated, our vet said, "Hey, I thought his eye healed up better than this..." Sure 'nuff there was a white spot on his eye... hmm? That is weird. He's been acting normal - no squinting, swelling or tears.

The past weekend I went out to skritch the ponies - it was cloudy but not dark and Rosso's pupil was dilated. The white is much bigger! I went out later when it was brighter and when his pupil is constricted, you can't see the white so it's IN his eye, behind the pupil.

And when I go out at night to feed, it's dark... I look for blood and how the horses move and if they eat... I would have noticed tearing or a swollen eye or a squinting eye... but I don't really look IN their eyes when everything seems perfectly normal.

I called the vet. Cataract... but why is it growing? He has an appointment tomorrow night in the dark and -20 weather for an eye exam. I'll take him to our vet (4 doors down) so we can be in her shop, out of the weather and warmer than the out of doors. The opthamologist will meet us there. Besides her shop has a set of stocks and lights to turn on and off for eyeball viewin'.

When I told Mrs. Kravitz? She said I was lucky. She'd like it if her horses went blind because then they'd have to rely on her and wouldn't try to kill her. Isn't she funny?

I won't go that far. Rosso has nice, big, kind eyes and I'd like it if he could see while keeping them both.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

New Year pictures....

I know these look sorta dirty... but they were tasty with a capital T. Fried pickles. Rex...
Rex's Ma....

Is that a cat butt magnet on the fridge??

Pins and beads and glo-stix ... oh my! Vulcan mind meld?

Lab-a-doors and Border Collies....

And now the cat head-butting games begin.... TOE! Have what have YOU been drinking?

At the barn on Sunday...

I woke up to a grey and cloudy day. Ugh. Seasonal affective disorder anyone? Those days seem to zap my energy and normally cheerful spirit. It's why I live in Colorado. We have something like 360 days of sunshine...

Well not today.

However, today is my lesson day and that is motivation enough. Our lovely neighbor, Mrs. Kravitz, sent her husband over with the tractor to dig our trailer out.... the 40mph winds over Christmas created a wall of snow that I'm quite sure our truck would not blast through hauling a trailer. (see why I love Mrs. Kravitz in spite of her binocular watching habit? - she does have a heart of gold)

I loaded Sera and off I went to the barn. The three yellow labs - Molly, Turbeaux and Josie in her puffy periwinkle coat run about cheerfully barking to announce a new trailer pulling in. Jake, the Border Collie, is silent and ducking about watchfully as all good Border Collies seem to do.

Rex's husband Glen was working on the manure pile... using his tractor to load the composted manure into the manure spreader and heading out to the pasture to spread it... a constant sound of machinery filled the yard. Slow and steady.... moving to and from the barn while the unearthed compost steams in the cold...

After a friendly greeting, all the dogs return to galloping along with Glen... out to the pasture and back from the pasture. Happy in their work - following - taking turns riding shotgun.

My lesson was a good one - I rode for half and Rex rode for half. I ask Rex to ride Sera occasionally cuz it's a good check-in for both of us. Rex feels where Sera is at and gives me good input. I get to see what Sera looks like... "Oh! Rex, can you do a turn on the forehand.. she isn't stepping out as wide as I thought she was on the left hind is she? Oh! And can you ask her for a lengthening - she seems very straight and uphill doesn't she? Oh! And maybe ask her for a simple change....yeah, she totally blows me off there too! And what is she doing when you ask for a flying change?"

I always learn something in watching and's really fun for me.

I cooled Sera out and brought her home. Furry Husband met me in the pasture and while I put Sera out to pasture, he unhitched the trailer. We stopped for lunch and I headed back to the barn to clean stalls. The Sunday cleaner was out of town and I'm the fill in. (Heck - it earns me lessons and I'm a lesson whore so I don't mind mucking stalls a bit.)

I cleaned the pasture run-in's first. Honeymoon, a dapple grey, Holsteiner mare imported from Europe is out here. She has eyes that would make anyone fall in love with horses. The rest of the herd is Rawhide, a red roan, QH gelding, 20 something lesson horse... Dunny, a wooly cushing's dun QH mare approaching 30 (I rode both Dunny and Rawhide long ago...) Cachet, a 20-something bay Holsteiner embryo transfer foal from CSU... she came with Metia, one of the barn horses. My roommate in college leased Cachet. (wow am I old) And Pal, the youngster of the group, a Paint gelding owned by Rex's other sister, Jamie.

In the barn, I started with Metia's stall... she is in her 20's now and retired from PSG level Dressage. She was one of the first CSU embryo transplant foals from way back when. She's registered Dutch... Rex's sister, Mindy, owns her and evented with her before she went to vet school. Once she went to vet school, Metia came to live with Rex. I leased her one summer long, long ago and a picture of me smiling from her back is in our bathroom. They were able to get an embryo transfer from her 3 years ago and I remember all the rectal exams it took for the reproduction work... she seemed to like the exams so we started calling her "Back Door Betty"....

New Moon is next. A dapple grey Holsteiner mare born on the farm out of Honeymoon, out in the pasture. New Moon is injured and we weren't sure she'd make it. She hurt one leg pretty bad and her other leg began to break down from the strain. The last time I came to clean stalls, she was down and depressed. This week, she is up! She is alert and moving around. Her attitude is 180 degrees better. She is rearranging her stall mats and trying to break free of her stall... I don't think she's out of the woods yet, but it looks promising. She won't be a riding horse anymore but her strong personality will still be around and we are all grateful.

Cabachon is the third stall. A bright bay... he seems smaller than many warmbloods to me, yet when Rex is riding him he magically grows in size and looks big. He is also a Holsteiner and a stallion. I remember when he was born. Honeymoon is his dam too... he is always a gentleman and seems to have a very playful way of getting between me holding a forkful of poo and my poop cart... rascal. We think he looks like Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron - that animated movie?

Coyote Moon is next. A dark bay Holsteiner gelding, also out of Honeymoon. I remember his birthday too and I remember his approvals and Holsteiner branding. Yeow! Furry Husband calls him "Wild Child". Coyote has a temper... he doesn't WANT to be in his run while you are cleaning his stall. He gallops and spins and bucks and carries on because you won't let him in... His owner is in NM and he's in training with Rex. I think he's 7 this year.

Magnot, a black Trakhener gelding, is the next horse to greet me. He is from WY and was in training with Rex for his futurities. He developed an unknown growth in his gut... he looks like a bulging pregnant mare but only on one side. It stopped his show career and he stays at the barn because CSU Vet Teaching Hospital is close and no one knows what might happen to the growth (that we all call "Matt"). His owner prefers he's close to CSU vs. in the middle of nowhere WY. He's been to Littleton Large and to CSU and no one can make "Matt" disappear. He seems comfortable and happy for the most part....

Highbrow, another Trakehner gelding from WY is in the stall next to Coyote. He's chestnut with a white blaze ending up in a thin raised eyebrow looking mark over one eye. Rex's mom owns him and rides him... he is the most cuddly horse in the barn and would rather have you hold his head and swoon over him than clean his stall.

Max is next to Highbrow... I forget what breeding Max is... I want to say Holsteiner but I'm not sure. He's bay, tall, beautiful and afraid of EVERYTHING. When you enter his stall with the fork to clean manure... he acts as if he's never, ever seen a fork or anyone cleaning his stall for that matter. He came from OK for training in the spring and we don't know if he'll ever go home? He's doing well and his owner came out this summer to ride and check in on him.

Last and certainly not least is Obari, Rex's riding horse. He is a bright bay and he has PRESENCE. Wow. He's come a long way... he came for training last year and really didn't like people at all - his story was long. His owner wanted to sell him - she was the third in a series of fearful owners and he'd learned to intimidate his riders - people said he was dangerous. After he came so far with Rex, she decided to buy him. Now? Obari goes to clinics and he tries hard under saddle. She plans to show him this season and there's been no more monkey business. Obari comes to say hello to the humans in his life and he is amazing to watch.

I stopped cleaning long enough to chat with students in between stalls. Gail rode Rawhide. Karen, a local veterinarian, rode her Holsteiner mare, Mocha and told some Mocha stories. I talked to Amber who brought Callusaur... another Holsteiner that I remember being born at the barn out of Cachet. He is dark bay - almost black and has a white stripe on his upper lip that looks like a milk mustache. Amber is amazing with Callusaur and he is not an easy horse - she told me he's 15 this year. (did I mention how OLD I am?) He's been laid up with an injury and it was good to see them together!

And there are the horses who have died... Clown, Valkyrie, Kolissa, Chopper.... I remember them all.

I finally made it home and feel lucky to have spent the day at the barn with horses and people I love and know so well...