Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Dancing through life, on horses and foot...

Well, seems it's once again been a while since I've been here. Computer was down for a while, and I can't blog from my phone. Life has continued to go along at it's crazy pace - some fun and some not so fun, but that is to be expected.
Tonight I thought I'd share some photos and a few sentimental antidotes, if I can get to the sentiments without tears.
I realized I never shared my beautiful dancer Abigail. She has as much passion for her dance as Gabe does his scouting and Sarah her horses. She had her first big recital earlier this year, and I caught some lovely photos of her (for being in the back row, no flash and manual focus). She makes me so happy when she dances because she's so free and happy.

And then on through the summer, off to my favorite place on Earth. I can't believe I didn't blog any of this. The beach is MY happy place, so I dance for joy there. Topsail Hill is Heaven on Earth for me, it's freedom, happiness and joy for me.

See, "in a hole" does not always mean a bad thing.

nor does, digging oneself out of a hole (mind you I was dancing around him singing, so, you gonna clean your room NOW mr?)

Your IT DOESN'T HAPPEN OFTEN photo of me

SHE is a beach bum like her mother. We could live on the beach Abigail and I

Check this out: her first time at Topsail, Summer of 1996

and my child who is quickly becoming a young woman, she's so beautiful, but her growing brings me to tears often.

Then there was Gabe's Arrow of Light for Scouts, is how he soars...

A beautiful day at Five Lakes, swimming and learning, building and sharing....in other words, Scouting.

Although he appears distressed in some way, he's honestly listening to the Top of the Mountain story that Standing Buffalo tells.

And well, for those of you that ask me if Harley can fly with his ears, no, but he can with his feet!!

And finally, a few horse photos. Sarah's version of the dance involves a saddle. Proudly she won "most improved rider" at her barn this year, Highlands Riding Center. She has come far from the timid rider of last year, and is working hard on two horses that are NOT easy horses. She makes me proud because she seems to understand now that is about the horse, not the rider.

Mom and Flicka with Sarah. My mom led us to Flicka, for which I will forever be grateful!

She and Red having a pregame conversation.

Flicka and Sarah, her first show!!

and our boy, having a blast doing his favorite work, with his favorite girl

There we go, all caught up till Christmas.

I hope you all enjoy your holiday. Remember that it's Happy Holidays, that it's CHRISTmas....that there is a real reason for us to celebrate.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Let's Help Our Beloved Five Lakes

As most of my scouting friends know, an EF3 tornado hit in Bush this past week. Along with many homes being destroyed or hurt Five Lakes Campground was hit really badly.
Yesterday my husband, son and I spent the day at Five Lakes with over 100 other scouts and families, cleaning out and trying to get it ready for Day Camp in two weeks.
Although our beautiful Five Lakes will take time to recover, it's still beautiful to me. It's not it's setting that strikes me to my heart, it is what it is, what it means, what it provides to our scouts. Five Lakes is the home of day camp, the place where many boys spend their first campout, a place for flag ceremonies, funny skits and heartfelt talks around a fire. It's a place to go and be a scout, away from those who judge our boys from scouting, a place to be proud of what a scout is.
Troop 602 is taking it upon ourselves to help Five Lakes by coordinating the renewal of picnic tables and replanting of trees.
We challenge each troop and pack out there to come plant trees, live oaks, pines, whatever you'd like...all sorts were lost. A great project is for your boys to build a picnic table together. If you cannot build it, but can provide the materials to do so, we will set up a day when we can all come together and build tables.
For so many years the Colonel and Jimbo have done so much for us....now is time to really give back - our Five Lakes needs us!
Feel free to contact me, Heather Truett, and let me know how you'd like to help. I encourage each pack and troop to involve themselves and encourage their members. You can reach me by email at heathercooks1@bellsouth.net or by phone at 985-630-2551. As I told boys yesterday, this is OUR camp....my love for it, my pride in it and my faith that we can build it again will keep moving me towards my goal...I challenge you to do the same.

FYI, it was also on the news, and here is the link to that broadcast:

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The patience of Jobe....four legs and a tail....

We have decided perhaps Red's name should have been Jobe. That boy is such a sweetie, a babysitter for my girl, and has the patience of Jobe.
Yesterday they had their first jumping show, very slow going, but she is just learning and was very nervous. He of course took great care of her, very careful to make her confident.
They did 2 jumping classes, and two PreCaprilli tests for dressage. Two fifths, a sixth and a seventh ribbon were brought home, which although that's not top of the class, for a first jumping show I was proud of her for just getting out there and doing it.
They scored their personal highest in dressage, which made her smile, and made it clean through their 2nd jumping course...had a refusal in the first....so it was a very positive day for all.
Mom is tired, so not very witty or wordy, being the groom is HARD work I tell ya. So here are some photos for ya!
We also had a blessing of the horses, which was wonderful. God has given us these awesome creatures, entrusted us with them....

The blessing: Look at all of those gorgeous creatures

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Showing Big Red

Today was Sarah and Red's first big day together. They did two schooling tests at Amen Corner in Folsom, doing Intro A and B for their first time at a show. They did very well, scoring a 62 in each test, very respectable for a cautious rider and a trail horse come dressage boy. We are VERY proud of how hard they are working together!!
I wanted to share both videos with my darling Denise, but it took me three hours to load just this one...but I do have some photos to share as well.
Here is Intro A

For those that don't know dressage, you are basically competing against your last score. It's about bettering yourself as a rider and your horse learning to carry themselves in a proper frame, and you being able to get them there. They enter at a certain speed, turns must be a certain way etc. It's a big change from his trail world, but he seems to enjoy all the attention.

Now for some photos. He spent the night there last night, as they schooled yesterday and he got all spiffed up. He seemed to enjoy his night in the stall surrounded on each side by girls...our Red loves the ladies, he was chatting them up those mares.

This is hard for him, to stretch down like this while he's walking on....he did awesome today, the best I've ever seen him do..this is called a free walk

Two kindred souls these two men of mine

Working SO hard together, I love to see this, it makes me so proud!

and the two of them with their ribbons!!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Happy Birthday Big Red!!

Today was our Darling Big Red's 10th birthday!!

For his birthday he and Sarah got a dressage arena (of sorts) built in the upper pasture so that they can practice more. It's not fancy, but it gets the job done. Thanks to Highlands for the donation of the markers, and to Daddy for helping her measure it off and mark it.
They are working hard getting ready for Sunday's show. I tell you guys (the three of you that read my blog) I've never seen this girl ride as hard as she's ridden this week. She's been on him at least an hour hard work daily this week, practicing her patterns and balance. They are working together as a team now, and you can see how much their hard work is paying off.
He's looking great, red horses are lucky, the sun only makes them more beautiful. His coat is coming into a good sheen and he's fat and healthy. We ARE blessed Denise that you brought him to us, and we thank you daily.
So...the girls and I sang Happy Birthday to him over his dinner, and put a birthday hat on him and embarassed him (secretly he loved the attention) then he got his birthday hose down (which he ADORES) and some birthday clover and ate his dinner with his favorite girl of the four legged variety. I promised Denise some photos, so of COURSE I shall be forced to show him off (not like I don't constantly post photos of them).
Here's my Sarah working hard on her arena:
We had to cut some branches down to make room for her head.

Measuring out the dressage arena;

The birthday boy posing with his girls, in his homemade hat and some beads, which he also wore all afternoon to ride, he's so goofy.

And then..his baby girl is having a birthday Tuesday, so he shared his hat. He loves this child because she always has food.

Then, because he really DOES have to work..they practiced for about an hour and a half in the new area

And a birthday hosing (no point in giving pigpen a real bath), but a good hosing is great for all that sweat.

And YUMMMMY birthday clover

and to finish off his day, he had some after dinner hay with his best girl...who he bit right after I took this photo...she was hogging his spotlight.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Sarah and Red

We are wiping Winter away around here...and shaking out the cobwebs.
I'll admit, this winter hasn't been the best for us and riding. Hacking around has been fun, but Sarah and Red have work to do....if she plans on showing.

They went today for a lesson at Highlands, working towards their first scheduled show at the end of this month. Lazy girl + lazy boy equals horsey mom who will have to buy some blunt spurs so that lazy child can get lazy horse to show some impulsion. Won't hurt him, just get him motivated....big ole lazy oaf.

It's sweet to see her loving on him though, she put his new cooler on him after hosing him for the ride home and was oohing over him being soooo cute moooom, as she said.

THEN..there's the love of his life Flicka, who was dying at home without him. A mile down the road she heard Jamie's truck and went to calling her lost lover boy. I took him back in and the love fest began, just plain ole goofy, a gelding and a moony mare.

SO..wish my boy and girl luck in their show, and enjoy the pictures of them. I'll get some riding pics next week.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Goodbye Sweet Cat...

Today I got such awful news, that the child of some of our best friends had passed. Nooone ever wants to face death, much less that of their child, and I pray for them with all the strength our maker has given me.
Today the world lost a beautiful soul, a wonderful daughter and an amazing sister. We grieve with the family of Cat...Rebecca, Ty, Randy and Randy Jr. Please join our hands in prayer for them, hold them up and keep them strong.
God Bless, I know his arms were open wide as you came into them my sweet girl.

This poem seems so fitting at this time:

A Better Place
She’s in a better place right now
Than she’s ever been before;
All pain is gone; she’s now at rest;
Nothing troubles her anymore.
It’s we who feel the burden of
Our sadness and our grief;.
We have to cry, to mourn our loss,
Before we get relief.
We know we’ll reconnect with her
At the end of each life’s road;
We’ll see her cherished face again
When we release our earthly load.
By Joanna Fuchs