The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Friday, June 25, 2010

It has been quite a week - lots of yays and neighs (ha) happening around here, which inspired my "theme". It's a bit longer than my usual posts, but lots of pictures  :o)
First: Some mood music for you....

In all honesty, I had to blink to clear my eyes and make sure I wasn't hallucinating (the temps have been hovering near the 100 mark, which I believe can make a body woozy :o) For those of you that missed it, Sara's arrival at the farm absolutely ruined Rina's life (really). If you'd like to read all about the teenage drama that ensued following Sarabear's arrival, it's here.
Last year, a friend was looking for a good bareback pad to use with her horse. We found a Cashel "saddle" in the Sale Barn at Jeffers for a great price; she bought it and reported back that
she and her horse absolutely loved it. That had already been on my wish list, but running a charity means such [expensive] items are way down that list as a priority because most of my money goes straight to the non profit.  Anyway, I ran to Jeffers last week for some feed through dewormer and what did I see in the Sale Barn?  Another Cashel - and me with just enough money in the account to cover the dewormer *sniffle*.  I told DH about it; okay, it was probably closer to whining because I really really wanted to try one on the horses and look what he did! Totally fudged the birthday, as mine's not until December (and do I care? absolutely not!) Sneaky, sneaky man - he plunked it down on the saddle stand on the patio/tack room and never said a word. Whaddaya think? Major man points? Most definitely - Woo!
I am happy to report that Shadow absolutely loved the Cashel; me too. I am riding every day and trying to get myself back into shape after the whole muscle disease deal (and it's a long road - uphill both ways don'tcha know :o) After a few days with Shadow, I decided to try it on Cinnamon  - would you believe he liked it too? We only had one small problem (and the dirty details begin further down under "Bad" and end under "Ugly").
I'm starting to get the tack room back in order; it is really a small patio and gets cluttered very easily with all the items that are stuffed in there. Because space is extremely limited, we've got things literally up to the ceiling (you can see the bottoms of the saddle pads which are up over the halters and just below the ceiling :o) Of course after seeing the tack room at Grey Horse Matters' blog, I'd be waaaay too embarrassed to post photos of the whole room - that place is cleaner than my house!

I'm sad to say that the grant application (the big one) was denied. Apparently, we do not have enough cash on hand in the bank nor steady incoming donations so they were afraid we would fail the "public support test" - you know, we'd crash and burn 20 minutes after we ran out of their money. Anybody out there need a tax writeoff? *Grin*. We can, and will, reapply and in the meantime I have submitted a second grant and am working on a third - ask me how much I hate paperwork -  BLECH!
Poor Miss Sarabear got into some bees somewhere in the pasture, so her week has been less than stellar. She now has little black dots

all over her (Ichthamol ointment  works well on the stings - it's a drawing salve). Rina's attitude toward her has definitely improved, so that's something anyway.  
Shadow and Max managed to make complete pests of themselves the day I decided to ride Cinnamon; both of them where duly chastised. Unfortunately, Max was the only one that had the good sense to appear chagrined (notice I said appear) and I have my doubts there. Shadow, on the other hand, was completely offended because I did not pick him that day for a ride (and what was I thinking?) You'll have to wait until you get to "Ugly" for the conclusion of this little *cough* Tail. I have to admit though, Max has that "I'm so pitiful" expression down pretty well, doesn't he?
Our patio/tack and feed room is not actually a completely indoor room; although we have put Visqueen (is that how you spell that stuff?) over the screens. The most recent grant I submitted is for a small storage facility for our tack; we have 10 saddles, saddle pads, halters, grooming supplies, and a gazillion bridles crammed together on the patio along with feed bins and several hundred pounds of feed; not to mention the two-man auger. It will also cover the cost of a dehumidifier to keep the feed from mildewing (even with the plastic up, some of the moisture gets in there as you can see by the state of the tack - eeeeew). So in addition to trying to write grants left and right, get the horses (and me) back on track, and finish the demonstration area, I am also on a tack cleaning bender (and it certainly is a long overdue one *wince*). 
Call this a rant, but I just have to say I was very disappointed in Michaels this week. I have been calling our larger local stores to find out who I should send a request for donation letter to, and it has been quite educational. The only thing close to donating that this store does (according to the manager) is they "give away" items that they are going to throw in the garbage; you are not allowed to request anything specific either. So it's not that they won't donate anything just to us, it's that they do not donate anything to anyone. Now maybe I'm just being picky but that just seemed awfully Ebeneezer-ish of them, don't you think?  After all, I've seen their lines at Christmas (not to mention spent quite a bit shopping there myself). Hmmmm...Hobby Lobby anyone?
Remember I mentioned earlier that Shadow was mortally offended because I didn't ride him? Well I guess he figured that I just wasn't getting the message, because his next move was to bite Cinnamon on the top of his tail which resulted in...
Here is a somewhat embarrassing photo (nothing like high dose steroids to make a body look like the Sta-Puff Marshmallow woMan, yeesh) of Shadow doing his level best to explain his side of the story. You know, it's hard enough to keep a straight face when your kids do something funny when you're in full-blown parental mode; but I really had to struggle with this one (this is Shadow's "pleeeeeeze" face...Oh, my :o)
Hope your week was an adventurous one as well! 


  1. That is a long post. Sorry your grant didn't go through but that is exciting that you got your bareback pad.
    Have a great week end.

  2. I enjoyed every minute of it!

  3. Marg: Yes, I was very disappointed but it was a six figure request so I guess they have a right to be paranoid (and you're right, the Cashel was a great distraction :o) Thanks for the comment!
    Grace: Thank you so much! Even though I pretty much write about what I want to, it's always nice to know you're not boring the visitors. After all, I DO want you guys to come back. *Grin*

  4. Sorry to hear about the grant, hope it goes in your favor the second time around. What a nice surprise that was from your husband. just how long did it take you to notice it sitting there?
    Love the last shot, too funny. How could you stay mad at that

  5. Sorry the first grant didn't go through but I hope the second one does! That's not very nice of Michaels to be like that - I would have thought they'd be more generous. It's very disappointing. That last photo is so funny! No way you can stay mad him doing that!

  6. Why are you wasting your time with filling forms for grants and donations when you should be camped outside of some network executive's office with a reality show proposal? Yeah, I know that you haven't done anything really talented like sending a kid who thinks of a happy meal as being one of the major food groups up in a balloon, but I think you and your ponies have a great amount of potential. Hey, if that pest control putz over there in Shreveport can get a show by rooting out dirt-dobber nests with his forehead and challenging possums to no-holds-barred death matches--why can't you-all get one?

  7. Ann: I don't think it had been there too long...we had a vet coming for an inspection at 4 (a requirement of the grant I turned in) and I went out intending to set the folder I was carrying down on the old saddle that was sitting there on a stand, but there was a brand new Cashel there instead.
    All I know is it was not there in the morning when I went out to feed everyone breakfast nor was it there right after lunch. I'll say it again - Sneaky, sneaky man *Grin* :oD

  8. BeadedTail: Thanks; we're on the If at first you don't succeed... plan :o) I know that a lot of places have specific charities they donate to, and that's not a big deal (I certainly don't expect everyone to "pick" us!) It just really put me off to hear that kind of mentality from such a successful business. In a way, it's harder to keep a straight face with the horses than kids, because it tends to catch you off guard.
    FishHawk: EEK! I'm thinking the last thing we need on this planet is another reality show. While I am pretty sure I won't be able to avoid publicity forever once we get going, I'm seriously dreading it. It's really too bad I didn't have a video camera handy the day we had a opossum in the pasture (the horses were in a frightened little group and followed that little guy all over the place sniffing and snuffling at him). Then Shadow got too close and accidentally stepped on his tail; the opossum squealed, Shadow snorted and both of them jumped straight up in the air in opposite directions. I'm pretty sure that poor little opossum spent the next year in therapy ;o)

  9. oh my...those horses sure have unique personalities, love the looks! To bad you didn't get the grant, but keep trying.

  10. Rebecca: The absolute individuality of horses is something that totally fascinates me - I tell people that horses are just like icebergs (90% of them is below the surface).
    I have a whole stack of possible grantors to weed through; can't say I'm too excited about it, but I'm slowly working my way through it (haven't gotten any takers yet on the "tax writeoff" comment *Laugh* :o)

  11. Thanks for visiting and commenting - yes, my daughters and I were very fortunate - we found Mark Rashid just when we needed to and then have had the change to ride with him a number of times, including two week-longs in CO - I could tell lots of stories about our adventures trailering multiple horses 1,000 miles each way!

    Sorry to hear about the grant application - that's a real downer.

  12. Kate: Oh I'm so glad you stopped by! His books are terrific, but I've caught up to him so now I'm re(re)reading and saving my pennies for a DVD *Grin*. Can't imagine doing the week long deal - and with your daughters too - that must have been an awesome experience!

  13. Sorry to hear your grant didn't go through this time, but it probably will next time.

    Love your pictures, especially the last one. Your hubby is a great guy, very thoughtful. I think that Cashel looks like a nice idea for a fun ride. Thanks for the plug about my tack room. I wasn't sure whether to put it up or not. I love it and it's one of the things that sold us on the farm. Before that we boarded and didn't have more than a closet or cubby cabinet for our stuff. Some places had nothing so we used the car or trailer as a tack room. Yours is fine, I figure as long as it holds your stuff and you don't have to carry it around with you like we did, it's a plus.

  14. I honestly never realized that a horse would get jealous for not being ridden. It makes perfect sense though. Sometimes not being around an animal can make a person not realize that they have strong feelings, just like any creature.

  15. GreyHorse: *Laugh* he comes through with some good ones sometimes, that's for sure. I have to say that somehow it makes me feel better knowing you "inherited" the tack room instead of it being a custom built thing (just don't ask me why - I never claimed to make sense on a regular basis *grin*). Hopefully, we'll be able to have a real tack room one day too!
    Ratty: Isn't that funny? I have learned so much stuff that I never knew - I hate that I was so clueless about the true nature of horses for so many years. I'm doing my level best to make up for it though (one clue at a time - HaHa :o)

  16. Oh Jen, I'm so sorry you didn't get your grant, I'm praying for a miracle for you and your farm so that you get the funding you need. I do like the one reader's idea of a reality show...publicity means money for the farm! You could always try just doing a short YouTube video once per week (just a 5 min video) to get the word out about your farm, with links to your website so people could donate...I know, I know, who has the time, right? Still, it is a good idea.
    I laughed so hard at that photo with Shadow! You look fine, in fact, considering all the steroids they've pumped into you over the last year and a bit, you look darn good!!! Shadow is a character, and wooooo that bareback pad looks sooo good! Now I know why I used to get horse hair in unmentionable places when I rode bareback - I didn't have one of those *so jealous*
    Missing my Etsy friend, hope I haven't insulted you or that you are mad at me (eep, I'm sorry if you are!!)
    Hugs and prayers,

  17. Meghann: Thanks girl - you are SO kind! Cut my calorie intake in half, and still got an extra 20 pounds from those nasty things - UGH! I guess considering some of the horror stories I've heard - 60/70/80 pounds - I should be thankful that's ALL I gained.
    I'm tapering back down on those %&$# steroids now and only have another week to go before I'm off them again (hopefully for good this time!)
    Now I'd better get my tail back on Etsy and convo you (methinks I'm WAAY past due :o)

  18. know things will happen when they're supposed to...hang in there!

  19. Carol: *Laugh* You are exactly right. I've had all kinds of things fall through only to pop up again later ever so much better than I expected (Gods plans are always WAY better than mine, that's for sure ;o)

Your comments really brighten my day!

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