Monday, August 27, 2012

50 Years x2

Having celebrated our own 21st Anniversary this summer, and thought "it couldn't be THAT long ago we got married!" I wonder if my parents and my in-laws feel the same way about their own marriages?

Both my parents and Ken's parents celebrated their 50th Anniversary this summer.  My parents celebrated in May and Ken's parents celebrated on Saturday.

My Mom and Dad have been gallivanting around the world (it can only be called gallivanting when you're travelling the world on a cruise ship for 105 days) ( so our celebration was more long distance.

Ken's parents chose to have their 50th Anniversary party at our house.  The whole Lordier family was here.  All 4 siblings and their families.  And Toni's brother and sister-in-law joined us too.

We took the opportunity for a family portrait.  Casual style.  My favorite!

I love this photo, as I love my In-Laws.  They're special people and I count my blessings to have them for my family.

My wonderful co-worker Robin made the Anniversary cake as well as my nephew's birthday cake.  Both beautiful AND delicious.  

The girls got some quiet time in the pool.  Weather was perfect as was the company.

Bob and Toni (in gold, of course) relaxing and enjoying the warm weather

Horsing around in the pool

Bob and Toni cutting their cake - 50 years to the day!

I sure hope that Ken and I can follow in both our parent's footsteps.  They're both wonderful, fabulous and  amazing couples.

Ken and I wish them both many more years of happiness.  Love to you all!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Beach Ride!

Woo Hoo!  I went on my first beach ride with Blu Sunday.  I've only ever been on one beach ride before this - and that was on Cre many, many years ago.  It wasn't pleasant (the ride with Cre) as he pranced (there's really no other adjective) the whole time - though that was something he always did on trail rides so the beach ride wasn't anything unusual in that regard - and I'm sure he thought the ocean was going to come up and swallow him whole.

At the parking lot waiting to head out - Blu is watching the other horses get unloaded

My beach ride with Blu started out the same way.  Prancing.  Hmmm.  Well, it was more of a "come-on Mom, let me GO!" type action.  But it's only his third trail ride ever, second on the beach, and my first with him.  So I couldn't really blame him for being anxious, since I was too.

At the trail head

We had a great group of people and horses on the ride and Blu settled in pretty quickly.  More quickly than I, truth be told!  I'm so used to the awesome horses up at Deadwood Outfitters that I'm spoiled.  Their horses are rock solid and I can ride with a loose rein and KNOW that I'm I don't need to wonder what the horse might spook at next.  And yes, I know it takes selecting horses with the correct trail ride type temperament and years of training, whereas I'm riding a 5 year old show horse who's only been on two trail rides prior to this.

And that's what my brain kept thinking about.  That, and this:

  • Looking around to see what he'd see and spook at.
  • Hearing the roar of the ocean we couldn't see wondering if Blu knew what it was and that it wasn't going to eat him.
  • Feeling the breeze blowing and wondering what smells (or flapping bags ;-)) it might bring.

All that was going through MY head.  Dolt that I am.  I should just turn off my own brain.  Things would go much smoother!

We walked along the dunes for a bit before we went down to the beach

In any case, we walked North along a trail through the dunes until we got to a turn off where we could ride a trail to the beach.  Todd said if any of the horses got to the top of the trail and stopped or hesitated, we should spur them on.  So I was preparing myself.  Wouldn't you know Blu was 100% fine!  Calmly walked to the top of the hill/dune then didn't so much as pause before he walked down the path onto the beach.  Waves crashing and everything.  Easy peasy!

On the beach (that's Blu's ear in the bottom left)

Wide open beach, absolutely gorgeous weather, it was heaven!

We rode south for a while, probably 45 minutes, passed maybe 5 people.  Two guys fishing (saw one catch a piece of seaweed), a couple picking up shells, and one sunbathing (in sweater and sweats).  Where were all the people on a beautiful summer day?  Not here!  Too bad for them.  Good for us.

My view - what a gorgeous day it was!

I don't know about you all, but my way of thinking about beach rides is a nice walk along the beach.  Loose reins.  Looking around, enjoying the scenery.  I'm not one to go galloping down the beach as fast as we can go, racing everyone.  Maybe because I didn't ride all my life, or at least all through childhood, so I am a bit cautious?  Maybe I'm just chicken.  Whichever it is, my idea and Blu's ideas were different.

Blu's way of thinking was "lets get there now!" wherever 'there' was.  I can't and won't fault him for that since he doesn't have any way of knowing what my preconceived notion is/was.  But Todd was his usual good trainer-self and told me to let him go.


Yep, let him go.  Todd knew Blu wasn't going to go bolting down the beach.  Todd knew he just wanted to move out.  So if I'd let him move out, Blu would realize soon enough that it's MUCH harder work trotting in the sand, and would choose to walk.


But true!

As soon as I let the reins go Blu picked up to a trot and moved out.  He didn't try to canter or gallop.  Just trotted.  And then went back to a walk!

I laughed because that's all it took and there I was having an awesome ride!  I looked over to Todd, and being the joker that I am, said something along the lines of "Huh!  You'd think you were a trainer or something!"

Todd's knowledge helped me (and Blu) have a fantastic ride on the beach.  I learned that I could have fun trotting down the beach (and probably even cantering) and Blu learned that walking wasn't so bad either.

Good for both of us!!

Heading back to the trailers

Soon enough though it was time to head back.  We had a few young horses with us and didn't want to tire them out too much or have anything bad happen that might alter their view of beach rides.  

After the ride - Blu posing in his new halter (we won it with one of our blue ribbons at the Watsonville show)

Yep - it was really me on Blu - I didn't get a photo of us on the beach.  Ah well.  Next time!

So, when do we get to go again!?!  Huh?!?!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Skywatch Friday - my first time

I've never posted a photo for Skywatch Friday before but when I went into the kitchen to have my breakfast this morning this was the view I saw.  I immediately thought of my friend Sally's blog Sally Saw on which she  regularly posts some spectacular sky photos for Skywatch Friday.  And since it was Friday morning it just seemed appropriate.

I took a few photos with and without the power lines, but there was something about this one that I just liked.  So, completely untouched, power lines and all, here's my first Skywatch Friday posting.  Please click their link to go check out some other amazing photos that they host from around the world.

August 10, 2012 6:18am

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Watsonville Show - Saturday and Sunday

Saturday and Sunday's show was the "All Amateur Show" meaning professionals (like Todd) couldn't compete.  It was all about US, the amateurs, doing the showing.  With our trainer along the rail to offer encouragement or suggestions and congratulations.

Here's the show in pictures.....

Team Azevedo! (Sunday morning)  

It is truly amazing to have such wonderful people to share my passion with.  Everyone in this photo is AWESOME!

Here is Cabbie, still in the show arena at 28.  Too bad Cre isn't still around to hang out with Cabbie like old times.

They head into the Arabian Hunter Pleasure class

The judge (in cowboy hat) talking to Nancy's daughter after her Arabian Hunter Pleasure class

Me and my best friend.  :-)

I had a good view of the arena, while keeping Blu company Sunday morning before our class.

One of my favorite views - through the ears of my horse

After our classes were over Sunday afternoon, heading back to our barn - three happy girls on horseback

I leave you with this photo from Sunday afternoon.  Smiles everywhere.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

2012 Watsonville Show (aka GCAHA) - Friday

This year's Watsonville show was at least as fun as last year's show.  Maybe you're getting tired of hearing how much fun I have at the horse shows.  But it's true, I do have so much fun, sometimes I want to pinch myself.   (but that hurts so I don't!)

The show is held at the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds in Watsonville (thus "the Watsonville show") and the weather was quite different than at home.  When I was packing up this week I had to wait until after 8pm when the sun was no longer beaming down on the camper and the temperature was down to a 'cool' 95!  Compared to the 104 daytime temps, that was cool!  But Watsonville was in the 50s overnights and mid 60s to very low 70s (when the sun was out).  I forgot to bring a jacket - just had a sweatshirt.  Luckily I was able to borrow a jacket, which I wore all weekend.  Now, I'm not complaining about the weather, mind you!  It was really, really nice to not worry about sweating my patootie off in the hot show outfits like I did in Reno!

The weather also made it easier on Blu since it's his 'home' weather.  No sniffles or such at THIS show!

Going to pick up my first blue ribbon Friday.  Had the best ride to date!  Blu was amazing and I was totally relaxed.

There it is!  (and you can see the first of what turned out to be many blue ribbons on the barn wall - we were blessed)

Here you can see my camper in the background - third from left - while Todd rides Blu to warm up before their class Friday

Blu in one of the groom stalls waiting patiently for his first-ever Halter class

Halter class?  You're wondering, what the heck is that and why'd ya do it?  Right?

Well, why not?  The show was really small this year (weird) and they were not charging post entry fees to encourage people to add classes.  But really, the clincher was when I realized it was a Sweepstakes class.  That meant that I could get points (which equals money) for the Sweepstakes program that the Arabian Horse Association sponsors.  Todd was a great sport and took Blu into the class and he stood up really nicely.  Even if he (Blu) didn't have a clue what it meant to run around on the end of the show lead.  I took a video which I'll have to put here someday.

Here's our barn wall Friday night - one of the big red ribbons is from Blu's Halter class - Reserve Champion!

What's the only semi disaster of the whole weekend?  Um, how about I forgot that I had the Bosel and show bridle at home?!  (did you notice Blu was being ridden with a snaffle bit?  Borrowed, because MY show snaffle was in the same bag as the headstall and Bosal.  Sigh.  This is the last show that I'll be able to ride Blu in either a snaffle or Bosal (in Western, at least).

Next up - Saturday

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Annie has a New Favorite Toy

I hadn't even put my purse down when I got home today and Annie had her head in the bag I was holding.  I heard a "squeak, squeak" and laughed and told her to give me a minute while I at least cut the tags off!

The tags cut off, I tossed the two toys in the air, aiming one at each dog (yes I brought home two toys, because I can't get just one.  Heaven forbid!) but Angus wasn't thrilled with the toy he grabbed and he dropped it to grab the one Annie dropped and Annie then picked up the one Angus had dropped...(is reading that like listening to Abbot and Costello's "Who's on first" trying to figure out which dog has which toy?)

She hasn't stopped playing with it since.  It's been about 30 minutes.  I realize that isn't a huge amount of time, but when you have a toy squeaking away for 30 minutes it feels longer!