I missed my anniversary...

Sunday, September 26, 2010

...and I am tickled PINK!
My husband and I were talking the other day, when it suddenly occurred to me that I had forgotten all about my anniversary. I'm not talking about my wedding anniversary though, I'm talking about cancer. Yep, this past July I was officially four years out, and I completely forgot (yay!). For each year that passes the chance of survival increases; the first five years without a recurrence being the most crucial.  I was 40 and in the best shape of my life when I was diagnosed via my very first mammogram. My risk factor? Less than one percent.  
October is pink ribbon [BC awareness] month which means, ladies, you should go get 'em squashed; it could be more important than you know! The photo is me and my "chemo buddy" (I'm the one with the pink hat ;o) God took him home not long after this photo was taken; he and his wife were a precious couple that went to church with my parents (she still does). His infusions were done through the arm (hence the pillow), while mine were taken through a central line (I had a port surgically implanted near my collarbone). My treatments were every 21 days for a year and a half; it completely eclipses your life and can cast quite the lingering shadow. All I can say is that this survivor (yours truly) is sponsored by the grace and glory of God: Boo-Yeah baby, Woo! If you or anyone you know has been recently diagnosed with cancer, please feel free to visit my Pink Think lens for some helpful information.
Lady and Cinnamon will both be celebrating their 20th birthdays next year. Since a horse is 3 to 1 in people years, this means they'll be turning sixty. My best guess is that they are supposed to share the card (I wonder if this means we'll be able to ask for a senior citizen discount at the feed store now - whaddaya think? :o)
Although I believe we probably had more than two donations, there were only two people that actually left their names for the WEG giveaway.  Since we had two prizes up for grabs; a box of goodies from us, and an Equestrian Collections gift certificate from Stacey at Behind the Bit, we thought we'd have a little drawing to see who got to choose first. I typed each name on a blue piece of paper (horses see blue better than any other color) and let Bella choose the one who gets "first dibs". We're slightly soggy looking - it rained - but we got the job done...the most important thing is that LAURA G. IS ABLE TO GO AND COMPETE - Sorry for yelling (ha ha), I'm just so very excited for her! 
NOTE: In case you're wondering why I said, "Lady, don't help", she was parked right behind DD and stuck her nose about two inches from the camera *grin* (I was kinda thinkin' one blooper was enough :o)

WEG Giveaway from Jen on Vimeo.
I'm posting an updated photo of The Girls' cleaning crew; I still can't get over how fast those little boogers are growing. They were circling in anticipation of an incoming breakfast delivery (you can see Lady's reflection in the water). Personally, I'm thinking that Faith wins the pudgepot award this month. She'd be the tubby little white one on the left...looks kind of like a ping pong ball, doesn't she? ;o)
 Have a great week everyone!

You know, I never did like math...

Friday, September 17, 2010

Because Insult + Injury = Me (you see?)

I am (at long last) finally getting over some stupid sinus "thing". Now on the one hand, it's kind of nice to know that Ester C with Immune Support actually works (I know this, because I got sick approximately one week after I ran out - Grr). On the other hand, I feel like I have spent the last two weeks trying to corner the Kleenex market; or perhaps I should say "Codder duh Kleedex barkit". Ugh. At least my head is down to [almost] a normal weight; for awhile there it seemed to be weighing in at somewhere around 200lbs and was so full it was making my teeth hurt (weird, but true :oP 
Semantics, otherwise known as "Phraseology" can sometimes be pretty doggone important. Finding funds as a non-profit is a never ending labor of love (??? well, sort of). Large private donors are almost impossible to find, individual smaller donations are dwindling at an alarming rate, and the competition for grant money is fierce. Of course micro-mini charities like us have a much harder time finding funding than the big dogs; I mean, it's not like we have a real grant writer on staff, it's just me. That's why I was elated to find an email in my inbox from a foundation we applied to over the summer entitled, "2010 Grant Award Notification".  HOT DOG, all that hard work - plus those eight bars of chocolate and twelve bottles of Tylenol - has paid off! Yipee!!!
Heart pounding, I said a prayer of thanksgiving and opened the email to find, "We are sorry to inform you..." Glad I was still dragging that stupid box of tissues around with me; talk about a nasty surprise and a crushing disappointment! Afterward, I have to admit I got kind of irritated over the whole thing. Now maybe it's just me, but how would you have interpreted that email title? I don't know if they are mean-spirited or oblivious (hopefully oblivious) but it would have been nicer to word it a bit differently. You know, somewhere along the line of "Your 2010 Grant Request" or something like that. Bet I'm not the only who went from elated to devastated in 60 seconds or less either. Buncha meanies *sigh*. Guess that means I'd better get busy on the next one three proposals...Raspberries!
DD is off and running at college, and I must say that shopping for school supplies this year was far less mundane than it has been in years past. She is studying woodworking and cabinet making, so instead of a plain old ruler we needed cooler things like a tape measure and folding rule. I can tell you it sure felt strange to be doing our back to school shopping at Harbor Freight, Lowes and Home Depot (not to mention the checkout being considerably more traumatic for Mom - man this stuff is expensive!) Thus far, she's in heaven finding herself in a huge shop loaded with just about every power tool known to man (well, woman :o) The only hiccup so far has been her Interpreter who is leaving for another job (one with health insurance; and I can't blame her). Thankfully, she's helping with the mad scramble for a replacement. I'm not sure about other areas of the country, but around here Interpreters are in very short supply. 
I love daylight savings time; to a point. I think, though, that I will be very happy for the time change this fall. I'm also ready for some cooler temperatures and a reduction in the humidity (can't do the makeup before feeding, as I'll just sweat it off *sigh*). It's getting lighter later, and I still have to get everyone fed before I can get ready for work. Did I mention that we do not have lights for the Moo Crew? Talk about "being in the dark". Sheesh. I've never had to leave as early as I do this year, and I'm having a teensy bit of trouble seeing my way through the morning feed. Of course I can't wait until it's daylight anymore because then I'll be late for work. Let the stress begin, right? Although it would be much easier to get ready for work before feeding, it is a proven scientific fact that horses love you much more when you are clean (and yes I have tested this theory; the results were a nice big muddy nose print to the chest - dead center, of course, where else?) :oP 
In case you're are thinking I'm a half empty kind of gal, I am happy to share one of the positive aspects of my new schedule with you. Hope this will brighten your day a bit...God sure paints some pretty ones sometimes, doesn't He? 
To those of you who donated to help Laura G., thank you SO much for your kindness. There are only a couple of days left before the drawing; we'll let you know what happens - hopefully, she can GO! :o)

It really is there; even when it's not...

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Finding the Sense in the [seemingly] Nonsensical
It took me a long time to realize that there was a grain bucketful boatload of truth in that statement. Just because we can't see it, doesn't mean it isn't there. Horses (and other animals) are infinitely more aware of their surroundings than people; we tend to be fairly oblivious as a species. I walked outside one afternoon to find The Girls and The Moo Crew standing together in a frozen, frightened blot on their respective sides of the fence. Since they were all staring in the same direction, I used my brilliant powers of deduction to look in that exact spot to see what might have frightened them. Ummm...I see the land next door, a dead tree, and a whole bunch of weeds. We didn't have a storm, there was nothing moving, and no noise, so what was it?? I had to walk halfway across the pasture and do a considerable amount of scanning (both high and low) before I finally figured it out:
Almost completely hidden in the weeds at the base of the tree was a large branch; a.k.a the top portion of the tree. Although we'd had some gusty winds that day, it was hardly anything major (that is, of course, unless you are an old, brittle, dead-as-a-doornail tree). Got it; mystery solved (and yay :o)
Yesterday morning yielded a new mystery: and would you believe I actually had my camera with me for once? The Girls had not come down the hill for breakfast (they're usually waiting for me), nor did they answer my first whistle. The Moo Crew, however, was quick to materialize when they heard me. I called out to Rina, who whinnied back (a regular whinny; everybody's ok - whew). Yet they still did not come down, which meant that something was definitely off. I walked up the hill and found The Girls staring over the fence toward a house down the street. The people that live there have horses who, since they rarely feed them, are forever getting out in search of something to eat. Although I didn't see them anywhere, I had little doubt that's what probably happened. The Girls willingly followed me back down the hill, but still seemed uneasy. 
When we got down to the stalls, Rina suddenly went on full alert. [A relevant aside: Isn't she a pretty girl? I didn't even have to do anything with the photo...although I probably should do something about those weeds - yikes].
I went after Rina to see what she was looking at, and this is what I saw:
Hmmm....more icky weeds, the horse trailer, the neighbor's houses and a bunch of trees. That's it. Of course once Rina and I had declared the front yard "safe", then Taya and Lady wanted to know what was going on (beats me :o) Bella and Sarabear were right behind them. Hey I know, let's ALL stare:

NOTE: Although I have yet to find the manual, (I know they've stashed it somewhere around here), it's important to note that there are specific emergency procedures/protocol to be implemented in times of crisis: 
1. Do not report for a meal (a definite no brainer for the biped that something's amiss). 
2. Notify Mrs. Ladyperson by either a) Making too much noise if she's in the house, or, b) Not making any noise at all when she's outside and whistling for you.
3. Give Mrs. Ladyperson The Look when she comes to see what's wrong - the one that says, "DO something!"
4. Wait (sometimes for quite a while) while Mrs. Ladyperson attempts to figure out specifically what it is she's supposed to do something about.
5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until a) Mrs. Ladyperson finally gets a clue, or, b) the situation resolves itself.*
*I am happy to report that 99 times out of 100 these days, it's "A" (go me... HA ;o)
Strolling a bit further toward the street (and putting the zoom lens to work) solved our morning mystery:
Sadly, the closer I got the easier it was to see exactly why they'd decided to attempt an escape; they were starving. Poor babies...
You could literally count the vertebrae going over the rump to the tail of the horse on the left. The one on the right was also horribly thin; her spine protruding quite sharply all the way down her back.
I tried [very slowly] to get closer to the one with a halter, but they were quite clearly afraid of people. Since one of the neighbors had already called the sheriff's office, I opted to just let them handle it (the last thing I need is a hospital visit due to self-inflicted stupidity).
It breaks my heart, but there is nothing to be done about this situation. As long as the horses have water and are still standing, they'll stay where they are. Of course we couldn't afford to take on any more anyway, but it sure does hurt my feelings to look at them.
Geez, now I'm depressed. We need something to lighten things up a bit...Let's try this:

HaHaHa...Okay, okay, that's my Bella and although she does indeed have a lovely delicate muzzle, it's not really in a's a small batter bowl that had a few shredded carrots in it. I made a carrot cake the other day and had some leftover carrots (knew just what to do with 'em, too).
Please don't forget about helping Laura G! Look below to see the items I'm kicking in; scroll down to my last post or click here to see what on earth I'm talking about  :o)

WEG = Wondermous Equestrianne Giveaway!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

World Equestrian Games or Bust  :o)
Maybe it's because she's the most severely disabled of all the Para-Equestrians members on the team;
Maybe it's because she's their oldest competitor; 
- or  -
Maybe it's just because I admire the sheer grit and determination that help her overcome the physical challenges that should keep her out of the saddle (having had a degenerative muscle disease myself; thankfully now in remission).
Whatever the reason, a number of us "horseyfolk" have teamed up to help Laura G. achieve her goal. 
You don't have to be a Rockafeller, either. Just a regular person that wants to lend a helping hand. To encourage people to donate, we are putting together a number of prizes; some are horsey, but some are for the regular folks too! More details and a list of prizes are coming soon (we're still compiling - woo! :o) I can tell you that I'm still raiding my Etsy Shop inventory for enough items to fill up this 8.5x11x5" Priority Mail box, including one of my hand-poured soy candles in Dozen Roses (mmmmmmmmm :o) I'll give you a sneak peek at a few more of the items at the bottom of this post.
All you need to do to enter the giveaway is make a donation to Laura Goldman HERE (be sure to put her name in the "Notes to Seller" box on PayPal). It doesn't have to be a big one; $5 works as well as $50. You don't have to have a PayPal account either, you can just use your credit or debit card. Then leave a comment with your receipt number (copy and paste) and your email address on this post. That's all! Pretty simple, right? Laura's computer crashed a week or two ago, so she has no idea what we're up to...I just love a good surprise, don't you?  
Better hurry: The deadline is tentatively set for September the 20th. 
Let's all team up and git 'er done, everyone. Thank you!!!
Here's a sneak peek at what's in the box so far...
Registered at
Okay....Here's the whole kit-n-caboodle, just click on the image to blow it up: 
 Won't you please help us help Laura? Thank you!!

Postus Interruptus (cause it's important t'us ;o)

Sunday, September 5, 2010

In case you missed my blurb on Laura, it's here. I made a very small donation a week or two ago, and received a lovely handwritten thank you note from her yesterday. Although my muscle disease is (thankfully) in remission, the memory of it looms large when I see Laura. I understand all to well how much of a challenge this is for her, and it is my fondest hope that she will be able to compete in the games; she only has a few more weeks to come up with the funds (this is the Olympics of the horse world for those unfamiliar with it).

Here's the link to help: If you'd like to see Laura live and in person, here's her interview with Sheri Israel:

Feel free to help spread the word by creating your own post about this terrific lady (we'll take all the help we can get, but please let's make it happen :o) 
Thank you!
And kudos to Hope Hand, President of the USPEA for responding (in less than 60 seconds) to my email that their site was down; and she's already fixed it. Talk about being on top of things....WOW (Thanks Hope! :o)
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...