Monday, May 26, 2008

Our Growing Boy

It is so hard for me to believe that a year ago I was waking up every nite and 3 am to go out to the barn and check on Daisy to see if our little one was ready to join us. Sawyer waited and waited...until the end of June 2007 to arrive (I think he just liked making me get up in the middle of the night for a whole stinkin' month). Then we spent weeks calling the vets, several times a day, to see if he would make it through his intestinal infection. He proved to us then just how strong he is and continues to amaze us with his determination, curiosity, and strength. For example, it took three times the medicine (for a full grown horse) to knock him out long enough for him to be gelded (that means neutered, for the non-horse folks). He is so fun. I can already put a saddle on him (we don't ride him, of course), pull his mane, fly spray him, and he loves to play with bits; he is just the coolest horse. He is now a weird not-quite-bay-chestnut-or-gray color. I think he may turn out to be buckskin, but I am not sure. I measured him and he is now a little over 14 hands and weighs over 700 pounds. I used the horse weight formula to measure this... it is (heart girth x heart girth x body length)/330= est. body weight. Below are some pictures of Wes and I playing with our "BIG" boy the other nite.

Kisses from Mom






Sunday, May 18, 2008

A Horsey Weekend

I had a great time enjoying a few horse shows this weekend. Daisy and I traveled to Mill Creek where we were reserve champions in the Special Adult division. Then we booked it back home to unload, get cleaned up, and make it to Keswick to watch Brooke and Marcy WIN the $10,000 Habitat for Humanity class. They finally broke the second place curse and came home with a nice paycheck. Wes and I took Lily with us to watch Brooke ride. It was Lily's birthday on Friday so we thought she should get some special treatment! Here are some pics of the weekend fun!




I tried to snap a pic of Daisy and I with our ribbon. This was the best I could do...



Daisy took a snooze while I was packing up the trailer.


Brooke and Marcy after receiving thier spoils.

Rodrigo reluctantly posed for a shot with Marcy. He loves her so much!

Lily enjoyed all of her birthday cake on her 5th birthday!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Glue?

Meghan called me on Sunday. She wanted to let me know she was thinking of me on Mother's Day and that she had said a prayer for me at church. I was touched. Meghan also said that she felt a little distracted at church, she spent much of her time watching the mothers be the glue of their families: making the little ones taking their first communion feel special, while tenderly caring for other children, entertaining out-of-town guests, and looking completely composed in the midst of all of this. As she spoke, I recalled a conversation I once had with one of my godmothers (Susie). She explained that women were the "strong ones"; they are emotionally tough, spiritually tough and physically tough. Essentially, we are the "glue," that Meghan described to me. What wise women I have in my life! This is not to discount the special men in my life and their roles, but I am taking this moment to honor the women!

In the past, Mother's Day was limited to giving my mom a gift and making her feel special and calling or visiting my godmothers, and taking my mother-in-law to lunch or dinner. I limited the scope of Mother's Day to celebrating these women. I know they are all amazing and each had a unique impact on my life: Aunt Linda taught me to HATE tomatoes, Susie taught me to treat the person I shared my meals with as the most important person in the world (in other words, no cell phones!), and Mom, well, she taught me to SPEAK MY MIND and Judy, to keep the faith! Most importantly, they all taught me to LOVE: love people, love family, love Jesus, love animals, love the earth (gosh, I am starting to sound like the "granola" my students seem to think I am...). I am blessed and thankful for these four "mothers" of mine! I also think it is important for me to acknowledge the countless other amazing women that have taught me so much: Aunt Judy, Aunt Meg, Granny (this is my first mother's day without her. I do miss her.), Grandma, and Aunt Sue. Thank you, each of you, for all the seeds you have planted in my life.

But... this Mother's Day was just a little different. As so many pointed out to me, this could be my last Mother's Day as a non-mother. Aunt Linda put a bit more delicately as she called me a "mother-in-waiting." (She knows the feeling well...). I began to ponder...what will my child thank me for on mother's day? What will I teach him/her? Will I even be a "good" mother? Will I be the "glue" that Meghan described? Wes assures me that I will be a great mom, but being the not-very-touchy-feely-or-openly-emotional type, I do wonder???? And, what amazing standards I have to live up to...Mom, Susie, Linda, and Judy! Whoa!

In addition to my own pondering on motherhood, I thought about my pregnant friends/family Erin, Cristin, and Cristen waiting on their children to arrive this fall. Are they wondering these same things? I also thought of Sara who finally finished her paper-pregnancy on the 8th when USCIS FINALLY approved their paper work so they can get their little girls in Ethiopia. What a great Mother's Day gift for her! Praise God!

Mother's Day is starting to look a little different, and as I shared these thoughts with Wes on my (hopefully and prayerfully) last non-mother Mother's Day, he reminded me that I was wrong. I am already a mommy to many. Their names are: Carmen, Lily, Jackson, Guthrie, Topper, Daisy, Bandit, and Sawyer. On that note, I am adding a pic of Sawyer and Daisy from last summer , just moments after Sawyer was born. My mom always call this the "a-ha moment," and I must say ... it is so precious to witness. I can't wait to have my a-ha moment with my little one. This not-very-touchy-feely-or-openly-emotional-type just might have a few (okay...a lot) tears of happiness!


Sunday, May 4, 2008

My Soapbox

A friend of mine asked me what my take was on the death of Eight Belles... here is what I wrote to him. (Chad, thanks for asking!)

Here's the deal (or at least my interpretation of a cruel sport). All riding disciplines seem to find fault with each other's styles of training, etc and I'm am sure people will say my sport (hunters/jumpers) is cruel as well. BUT... what bothers me the most about racing is that the HORSES ARE TOO YOUNG! Horses continue to grow until they are 5 or 6. The horses that race in the big races, like the Derby, are simply too young and their bones are not fully developed. It is like making an 8 year old kid run a marathon. Their bodies are not ready for it. If the entire racing industry started racing these horses when they are mature, there would be far fewer injuries! Right now I have a 10 month old foal. While we will put a saddle on him when he is 2 1/2 long enough to teach him what it means to w-t-c (walk-trot-canter), he WILL NOT be subjected to full workouts until he is almost 5. He is a growing boy and the pounding on his legs and knees will ruin him if he is worked too young.

Poor Eight Belles was a beautiful filly, bred to be as light as possible. She was too young to train and race and her bones just gave out from the constant stress of training and racing. It is a terrible tragedy. I will not support horse racing until changes are made to protect the ANIMALS and not the wealthy owners.

On top of the sad stories of the BIG races are even more disgusting abuses on the cheap tracks. Owners buy/sell horses for next to nothing and many end up abused or shipped to Canada for slaughter (the US outlawed horse slaughtering). I have helped rescue several of the track failures from this sad situation. One had flipped in starting gates, others too slow, others had such damage in there ankles that they had literally fused together and could no longer flex. One had a small bow in the tendon and the vet advised the owner not to race him again, the owner did NOT listen and raced him again. Of course, the tendon bowed again...only worse this time. The owner refused to pay the vet bill. They placed a wrap on his leg and left it there for over a week. By the time we removed his wrap, he had sores from the swelling. This poor horses eyes were so sad. He had worked hard for his owner, won him so much money, and was then abandoned. These living creatures need advocates to protect them! I will be a voice AGAINST racing until rules change. I hope you will join me :)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

September?

My birthday was on April 12th and my mom gave me a P Buckley Moss print "September's Baby." Mom said she picked it because she had a feeling that our baby would arrive in September. I don't know if she is right, and I am even a little hesistant to write this as once again I am wanting to get excited but afraid to get TOO excited. BUT...Wes spoke with our agency today and they have eleven birth mothers due by the end of September that have not picked adoptive families yet. They do plan to show our books to some of these mothers. That is all the info we have at this point, but I must say... I got butterflies in my stomach when Wes told me. Maybe, just maybe, Mom is right and we will meet our baby in September...