Saturday, December 28, 2013

2013 Year in Review

This was a year of some highs and some really bad lows. We started off with a bang and not the good kind. Winston had a major freak out, ran into the stairs and flipped over. Luckily he and I both survived the shaky start to the year. The other big thing in January was Rosemary's eye. Her sarcoid reached new heights.

February brought new beginnings with the birth of my niece, Anna and the first time I backed Roscoe. He was a super star.
 In March Comrade and I ventured out to a jumping clinic at Morven park. Though I was totally sick, the experience was enlightening. We learned Comrade needed wooden poles to learn to respect the jumps. He took to the indoor arena like a champ though.
April was a month of revelation. We discovered Comrade needed joint supplement and on his 8th birthday he started moving so much better. He work improved and we finally began to canter without bucking. Rosemary's sarcoid had a piece fall off beginning the size decrease that continues even now. This was the month we began to learn the facets of breeding and training. Roscoe spent the longest two weeks learning to mount a phantom and how to behave around the girls. It was a big expense, but totally worth it to see how well he behaves now.
May brought Roscoe home and one of the worst moments of the year, Winston is diagnosed with Laminitis. Every horse owner's worst fear. We started the cycle of icing, soaking hay and slashing his diet. Our light in the dark, an article I saw on Facebook about a new laminitis drug trial for Laminil. Amazingly, Winston is one of 40 some odd horses allowed to receive the drug. His pain level decreases and each day he moves better. The experience is one that will never leave us.

This month also brought the first Welsh Show. Comrade was double Supreme Champion Gelding, a great result considering we switched him to breed classes instead of ridden at the last minute. Roscoe ended up Reserve Grand Champion Cob under one judge. Even better we found out the boys would go under the canopy :) For Comrade this marked the start of his diet. In retrospect, looking at his feet we really think he had an episode of laminitis too.
June was a month of frisky ponies. Winston was able to get limited turnout and Roscoe got a field trip for his birthday. He and I went for a pony ride with Mom leading the way.
July was a really up and down month. We really started having issues in the mare herd resulting in injuries requiring stitches. That began the downhill snowball of problems with turnout. Roscoe finally had  and kept a collection appointment to finish his breeding season. Unfortunately, neither mare became pregnant :( The upside of the month was really Comrade. He began to trust that he would not be in pain anymore. He readily showed his improvement at our first CT where he led out of dressage and after having a rail down, took 2nd overall.

August was rough. We suffered the sudden death of our 11yr old Corgi Kayla. Animals give us so much during their lives which makes losing them even harder. I did have a good ride on Comrade just because grief put into auto pilot. No over thinking, just natural responses.

As bad as August was, September was great. With a modified muzzle, Winston was able to go out on pasture for short periods. DaVinci's previous owners came for a visit and were thrilled with how well he was doing. Plus we had the second Welsh show where Roscoe got a Grand Champion, Comrade a Supreme Champion and together we rocked the Ridden Cob. Redemption at last. Then the month got better. Rosemary and Comrade were super at a Hunter Pace even with our oops detour. And Comrade did a gymnastic exercise impressively smooth.

Almost forgot, Winston also got a thumb's up from the vet for his body condition and Mom got on for a ride. Told you this month was great.
 October brought a new face into our family: Deliah a corgi puppy.

With her arrival, I felt the pinch financially. So I put two of our saddles and one of Peggy's for sale to raise some money. That has been an interesting experience.
And speaking of saddle's, we found out this month that the shifting saddle problem Comrade had was due to his uneven muscling on his back. Concentrated riding and in hand exercises were his prescription. Plus we used towels to help the saddle panels.

Ah November, not a good month. Dottie began a Mud Fever trial for Hilton Herbs and she ate the medicine. Then things go downhill when I get sick and have to deal with a scam. My horses maintained happy work ethics even with my lack of initiative. M enjoyed Rosemary rides and K enjoys Dottie rides until she falls off and breaks her collar bone :{
Mid month we are devastated by the death of my grandfather. Mom and Dad leave for Florida while my sister and I hold down the home front. I devise a contest to share funny stories and raise my spirits. It really helped take my mind off the sadness. Thanksgiving was subdued but heart felt.
And December has brought crazy work schedules, a few super great rides and lots of precipitation. Did I mention mud? Lots of mud. I have taken the steps to advertise Roscoe's stud services and have talked to his breeder about next year. So hopefully there will be Roscoe babies in 2015. I also have a new camera to play with and have to teach Peggy how to use so I can get VIDEOs :)
Winston has gained free range of the pasture since snow put the grass dormant. I love seeing him run in after being with the boys. His happy face makes the bad parts of the year smaller.
Welsh year end results were finalized this month. Roscoe ended the year as National Champion Colt and Comrade finished 3 place 3&up D Gelding Nationally and 1st place Regionally.
Not too shabby.

This month wraps up my second year blogging. I really enjoy the responses of readers and the support. Can't wait to start the new year.

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