Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Year in Review

Thank Stephanie for coming up with this! Great idea!


Here is a meme that Stephanie came up with. Please consider yourself tagged!


List 5 Five Good Things That Happened to You this Year:

1. I bought my mare Abby

2. I overcame my confidence issues handling horses on the ground

3. I started this blog and rediscovered a love of writing.

4. I started writing a novel! (Shhh! Its a secret)

5. I went camping with the horses in Lundbom with Barbie.

List 3 Bad Things that Happened to You this Year:

1. We lost Besi (one of my kitties)

2. I lost Shaunti.

3. I fell into a bit of a funk this Oct/Nov and my health suffered for it (my chair is still shrinking lol).

List 5 things you want to do in 2009 - not resolutions just a big picture to do list:

1. Take a lot of riding lessons

2. Run the Vancouver Sun Run in April (Second largest timed 10 km race in the world)

3. Take a course at the local university (even if it is just a month long one)

4. Complete my novel

5. Travel to Scotland

List 3 Lessons you Learned in 2008 - don't have to be related to the bad or good things as long as it was learned in 2008.

1. Tomorrow is today. The time to act is now. Nothing comes to those who wait. So go GET R DONE!! lol
2. I'm all grown up. (I know that sounds funny but turning 26 was kinda weird for me- I realized that the things I wanted in life had changed and I released that what I do now will effect who, what and where I am at 30, 40 etc.)
3. Horses are not my life. I have a passion for them that borders obsession but there are things in life that I want to do, places I need to go and an education I need to obtain that has, in the past, been compromised by the amount of time and money I committed to horses. If I have decide between putting a horse in training for 3 months or taking a trip to Scotland...

Scotland it will be!

Most Favorite Read of the Year:
The Twilight Series (That is the truth! Which is highly embarrassing because I would have prefered to lie and say Emma or Pride and Prejudice! Both of which I loved but didn't inspire me nearly as much as the Twilight books!)

Most Favorite Movie Watched of the Year:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (LOVED this movie and ladies...Brad Pitt... SO freakin hot in this movie (and he is not usually a swooner for me.))

Most Favorite Horsey Moment of the Year:

Riding in Lundbom. It was AWESOME!! Thanks Barbie.


Update: Abby arrived safe and sound! Thank you everyone for your well wishes!

See you, Miss Abby! Take Care!

HAAAAAAPPPY NEW YEAR!!!! Be safe tonight and have fun all! Many blessing to you and yours for the New Year!!!

(Abby in May 08)

So....this morning Abby was loaded up on a trailer and is now headed off to her new home!!!!

No! I didn't sell her! And have no plan to do so. But she will not be home again until the fall of 2010! I haven't wanted to say anything here- I didn't think it wise until all was said and done- but now that she is truly on her way, I feel it safe to say that Abby is heading out on a breeding lease!

Let me tell you how this has come about...

(Chex Nu Jewel)

Abby has been in training for exactly one year this coming week. She was blessed to find an amazing trainer that was able to look through her anxiety and see the little rock star that was hidden benieth. Watching Abby bloom, week by week, has been one of the greatest joys of my year. But I could not keep her in training indefinitely and we (her and I) needed to move on; to start the transition between her being my trainers horse, to her being my horse...

(Check Nu Jewel)

The problem was that I was just not ready! I have ridden Abby a handful of times and let me tell you, she is freakin' amazing! I the coolest thing I have ever ridden in my life! She is broke to death, has a incredible amount of feel and rides like she is on rails! Seriously. Love. This. Mare.

(Chex Nu Jewel)

But......when my 'one-year-training-promise' to DB came to an end (an extension from the three-month-promise), I was just not to the point where I felt I could take her home and use her effectively....or...more importantly....for her to continue to improve with me alone! The idea that I put so much money, and Kari put so much time and heart, into getting her to where she is at- only to bring her home and not be able to use all the cool little buttons Kari installed for me....just didn't bode well for me. At the same time, I couldnt keep her in training any longer nor, (as she is close to two hours away), was I able to work with my trainer and her full time.

(Hold That Cow)

My plan was to use her in 2009, to compete a little more at reining (where she nearly finished) and then take her into the cutting pen. But that just wasn't going to happen so I thought maybe it was as good of time as any to get her seasoned in another aspect of her future!

So...I decided on a different course of action.
(Hold That Cow)

Abby will be 6 years old this spring and as I plan on using her as a broodmare (and trail horse) once she is done her "career" I figured it would be a win win for both of us if at this point she were to go out of training to have her first foal!!!...That way, even if not used as a show horse, she'd still be moving ahead in the long run! ....That is for Miss Abby to become Mrs. Abby by becoming acquainted with a really nice stud!

I would have loved to breed her myself but as I board out (at $400 a month) it just didn't make any sense economically.
(Hold That Cow)

So as luck would have it I knew just the right place for her! I contacted McBride Quarter Horses and asked if they were interested in taking her on a breeding lease and thankfully, they were very excited at the prospect. So we fussed over a good solid care contract for a week and then settled everything up a few months ago.
(Sunglows King Fritz)

And now....the day has come for her to leave!! Abby is in a trailer on her way to Eastern Washington as we speak (or type! ;)

(Sunglows King Fritz)

It is....bittersweet for me and for poor Kari. Abby is a princess, through and through, and no more believed as such as in the eyes of her trainer, Kari. While we both appreciate that this is the "name of the game" I know that Kari has given her heart and soul into seeing Abby become the wonderful horse that she is today so could hardly help but be sad to see her go. Though she has been really supportive of the whole thing!!! And, as I plan on continuing lessons with Kari (on a school horse), once Abby comes back in fall 2010 I should be much further along as a horsemen and we can start our future together with many years ahead of us free from the worry of having to take a "momma" break as we would if she were a maiden.

But....Abby will be missed.... sorely.

Wait! There is more!

I also have, in exchange for the lease, been given a breeding to Chex Nu Jewel, McBride's beautiful palomino Nu Chex To Cash son; Sunglows King Fritz or to Hold That Cow (Holidoc x Docs Hickory), a stud with offspring earnings of over $220, use, sell or trade!

So.... if you wouldn't mind... please do wish us luck?!! I pray that Abby will be happy in her new home, that she takes to breeding, carries a foal without event, produces a healthy and beautiful colt for McBrides and comes home to me safe and sound!

See you, Miss Abby! Take care!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Perpetuating Lamenss Issues in Breeding

(Oh dear... poor Fugly... just had a hernia!)

Are you still holding your proverbial ponies? Good! Here we go....
Yesterday we discussed how bloodlines in quarter horses have become so refined as to render them nearly indistinguishable as the same breed (as in the difference between a 1400 pound 16.1HH Halter horse vs a 14.1HH 750 pound cutter!)
(Check out the steep pastern angles on this horse! She looks like she's wearing high heels for goodness sakes!)

We also discussed how breeders have not always done their part in improving the mental or physical qualities of their horses.... or ensured that the cornerstones of the breed- cow sense, athleticism, ability, speed, stable temperament, soundness, and the ability to work a day as long as the cowboys need- were retained.
(Hmm..this horse needs a little help with her front legs too!)

Are you taking notes? Or am I having another "Bueller" moment? Hello? .... jk

(This is what I would consider post legged behind)

So... Melanie questioned whether breeders have managed to improve upon some of the soundness issues that Quarter Horses had 15-20 years ago...
Sorry Melanie (you young and adorable thing you!)...but... 15-20 years ago I was in elementary school (werent you too?) I really couldn't say.... much as I love an American Quarter Horse, I wouldn't claim that they are a breed known for maintaining physical soundness in the best of conditions...
In my limited experience I have become most concerned with front limb lameness, particularly Navicular. It seems that at some point breeders stopped considered pastern angles, bone, correctness, proportionate hoof sizes etc.. important conformational factors and the breed suffered as a result.
(How do you figure this mares little tiny feet will hold up to all that weight?)

One would think that an expression as old as "no foot, no horse" would remain true today-... as it has for a thousand years or so..... but unfortunately that is not the case. I read an article a few years back that ventured to claim that the scientific advancement of veterinary practises in treating reproductive and physical unsoundness in Thoroughbreds have allowed horses- that would have otherwise been culled naturally as non-performers- to continue showing, breeding and producing and therefore perpetuating the unfavorable trait.

In other words, because we have learned to "fix it" or work around it, we no longer feel as compelled to breed away from it.

Lets consider this scenario...

Lets say that a colt is born with a inherited deformity to his front limb.
Other than that one issue, the breeder feel that he has tremendous potential as ...let say....a race horse.

A hundred years ago, that horse would have been culled, as would have the mare (or stud) that produced it, because breeders could not afford to produce horses that would not be able to work or perform. Hypothetically, that problem would have ended with that line....or at least close to it.

But in today's day and age there are surgeries available to fix a lot of problems that would have otherwise ended a career before it had started. In this case, lets say that our colts deformity was completely corrected with such a surgery- which allowed said colt to move forward in his training....

Now.... our fixed and fancy colt goes on to have an amazing career..... Lets say he wins the Kentucky Derby!

As the owners of that stallion you could say... "the horse had a deformity as a foal and we don't want to promote that in future we shouldn't breed him...."

"We could make $25,000 a pop using him as a breeding stallion"....Hmmmm......

Hypothetically, I'd like to say that I would do what was best for the breed....

But as I have a particular liking for horsepower of a different kind... I might be thinking about how many Porsches a just one years full "book" would buy me...
So... said breeders decide they will take what's green and make like Gumby... or something like that....

And our little Derby winning colt goes on to produce a whole whack of colts with the same problem but as they are all wicked fast and do well on the track no one minds having to do a little 'snip snip' as a all is well that ends well....right?

10 years later, that colt (that would have been culled- at least in a breeding sense) is now a top producing stallion with a few thousand offspring that have a tendency towards ______!

Well, take that scenario and multiply it by a thousand... or a hundred thousand and that would pretty much sum up what has happened to horse breeds, including the QH, across the board.

Because hypothetically- should we have never bred a horse until they had proven that they could work 15 years without taking a lame step, that they never had disease, had never shown a vice and they broke out without a buck- we'd have created the perfect horse by now!!...
But we don't... because economics and the desire to WIN tend to drive the horse industry more than our.... ? Integrity ? as breeders!

So, this study showed how the reproductive soundness of horses in the TB industry was literally being bred out of them due to our ability overcome hereditary reproductive issues. This same study showed how the advancement of drugs and artificial devices (that essentially hold a horses hoof together when it would have otherwise fallen apart) has perpetuated front limb lameness.

One thing the TB racing industry has working in their favor (that the QH industry does not) is that they do not allow horses to be registered within the Jockey Club unless they were bred via LIVE COVER (allegedly!...some freaky horses (who conspicuously look like some top sires) come out of Argentina with no name breeding and win some big purses!! Suspect!) which has limited the ability of science to a certain degree....
As in the case of the Triple Crown contender War Emblem- who has nothing in a physical sense hampering his ability to stand at stud besides the will or desire to do so! Apparently he has no drive to *ehem* with a mares!! Which has cost his owners over 55 million $$ in lost stud fees... Ouch!
So... after all that blah blah blah.... the answer to Melanie's question is, "NO!" Quarter horses (as with almost all other breeds) still have as many soundness issues today as they once had...if not more.
Which makes it all the more important to be particularly fussy about the conformation of a ensure that they have the right angles, (no steep shoulders, steep pasterns, post legged etc.), the right proportions (a decent size foot, not to heavy on the front end, a good amount of bone, decent size hock etc.) and that they travel straight and true (winging in or out, toed in or out etc..) .....
One could argue that there have been many a great horses that have overcome conformational problems (Seabuiscut and Smart Little Lena) to achieve success in their given sport. While we don't have to seek perfection in our horses in order to believe them capable of success, perhaps we should take better care to ensure that future generations are less likely to suffer for them.
Now...Go catch your ponies... I have more tomorrow! Who just grumbled!!! I heard you!!
PS- Stephanie has some great comments on yesterdays post. I'd like her to do a post on top stallions in the WP industry. Wouldnt you?

QH Bloodlines

Ok.... Blast that Melanie! She is going to make me think today! *gasp* The injustice!

Here is her question:

" have sparked my interest in QH lines again, and I have been playing catch-up on the stallions of the last 10-15 years.....

.....It is interesting to see how the lines have definitely become more specifically refined over the past 20 years. You can almost tell what their breeding is, just by looking at them. How are most QH's when it comes to hardiness, endurance/stamina, and lameness?? I know there were issues with those qualities about 15 years ago, and was wondering if it had straightened itself out yet?...."

Of course I am no expect but am certainly never short on opinion, so here it goes:


QH and Paint bloodlines have becoming more and more discipline specific.

Generally speaking, if a horse is "well bred" (meaning that the horse has a significant number of performing and producing ancestors that relate to his intended discipline (the closer to the sire and dam the better)) the better a horse will be suited for a specific discipline.

For example....
(Twentyfour Karat Kid)

In the Halter world names like Conclusive, Kid's Clu, Impressive, Skippa Lark rein supreme....these horses, I dare to say, are not suited for much more than standing in a halter and lookin' pretty (though beauty would be in the eye of the beholder...) but these bloodlines, apparently, do that exceptionally well and it would be difficult for you to compete in Halter without some form of them...

Some bloodlines cross over to disciplines that are related in the form and style of their horses such as in HUS, Western Pleasure, Trail, Showmanship etc.. These horses have different breeding and "looks" within their genre but to the untrained eye these horses look similar in movement, type, and breeding.... I am sure Stephanie will slap me silly and call me Suzie for saying so....but till I stand corrected (correct me, please!) that is true in a general sense...


That is also true for reining, cutting and reined cow horses'. Each sport have bloodlines unique to the other, but in general they can and do crossover regularly. For example Smart Little Lena, Peptoboonsmal, and Hollywood Dun It all have offspring that have made significant money in reining, cutting and reined cow horse.

With that being said, of these discipline specific bloodlines, rarely does one "type" cross over to the other without decreasing the quality of the horse within its target discipline.

(Gallo Del Cielo)

Abby, my reining mare, is out of the Top 4 Reining stallion of all time, Gallo Del Cielo... Gallo Del Cielo is a FULL brother to a Top 5 Cutting stallion, Gray Starlight and to a top Reined Cow Horse Sire (Paddys Irish Whiskey) so I could within reason breed her to a reiner, cutter or cow horse without decreasing her ability to bring something to that cross, however Abby just happens to lack a bit of refinement in her movement for a reiner, so if I were to breed her with the intent of producing a reiner, I would breed her to the reining stallion with the best movement possible...
(Nu Chex To Cash)

....though no to a WP pleasure stallion....though WP (Western Pleasure) horses have far superior movement to reiners. I would not improve her chances of producing a top reining prospect by breeding her to one because I may loose other important factors in the process like speed or the ability to break in half..... Did that make any sense?

So over time bloodlines have become more specific because the horses have become more set in "type" and you need to conform to that "type" in order to compete successfully.

(Smart Little Lena)

While conforming to type does tend to increase their ability to excel within a specific discipline, it does not always ensure that other characteristics that we should value as horsemen have been refined or improved along with it. For example, Smart Little Lena has had a MASSIVE impact on Reining, cutting and RCH. His get are EXPLOSIVE in their athletic ability and have made a tremendously positive contribution to the breed as a whole...his offspring have earned over 27 Million dollars in NCHA, NRCHA and NRHA events!!! And, he is still living and producing!....but....

Smart Little Lena also just happens to throw horses with incorrectness in their front legs that would make a Halter horse cringe. We forgive him for it because, in general-though incorrect, his get are clearly unaffected in their ability to perform because of it. But none-the-less, we should, as responsible horsemen, breed horses to be as correct as possible...

More specifically- in the case of the Impressive line in the Halter world and the absolute incomprehensibility of breeding HYPP positive horses as some breeders continue to do in the name of winning. WTF?? These horses DIE!! because of this decease! ....Though the whole concept of breeding horses that are to be judged on their conformity to a specific type.... a type that allows them to be good for NOTHING..... Is a little lost on me in general.... Form to function people?

Wow! That was quite the rant!

I will have to leave off for today.... Hold on to your ponies! More tomorrow!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

My Fetch...

So, Melanie posed a really interest question today about the soundness of Quarter Horses...

An issue that I would really like to talk about...

But my brain doesn't want to work today... so I am not going too! .....

... tomorrow, k?

Instead, I'd like to tell you about the unsung hero of this blog.

My fetch.

My Bitty....

What you may not know is that just about every moment I spend writing my posts is spent in the company of my kitty Bitty Boo! I call her my fetch because she rarely leaves my side. In the morning she sits and watches the computer screen as the letters magically appear in a neat little row and the "mouse" (which is aptly named) zooms around...too fast for her to catch.
At night (as she is right this moment) she usually curls up on my lap. I love all my animals, my sweet little Boo-boo (LuLu) and even grumpy ol' Halle cat. Hawkydog (at my feet) ... but Bitty... her and I.... Were like this *fingers crossed*
So, here's to Bitty!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Bom Chicka Wah Wah.....

(By this morning the roads were relatively clear.)

I hope that you all had a wonderful Christmas! I sure did! Canada lived up its name of being "The Great White North" and for the first time in 37 years we had a nation wide white Christmas. It was beautiful but made driving a little hazardous.

But Hawkydog had no complaints! He LOVES the snow! Unfortunately his dark coloring against the white of the snow makes getting shots of his adorableness (is that a word?) difficult to catch.

We celebrated Christmas at my Mothers house this year. The spread was beautiful and the food even better.
For those of you who are wondering about my infamous Carrot pudding... well... it was edible and if you drowned it enough sauce, one might even venture to call it tasty. I know what I need to do differently next year to make the texture a little better and give a kick to the flavor. I wouldn't call it a success... but it brought back old memories...which was the point to it all anyways... kinda!

So, what did you get for Christmas?

I dont know about you but I got spoiled rotten! One of my favorite gifts would have to be these beautifully bound copies of Jane Austen's Emma, Pride and Prejudice and Persuasion. They are so pretty I feel guilty just opening them! But I will... because they are books... and their words are screaming to be read...because Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth are waiting to find each other, in my imagination.... Jane Austen is calling me from the grave.... or maybe.... not...

Okay...I'm working on a major sugar high here... give me a break. Auntie CC's butter tarts, short bread, and date bars combined with a few chocolates and a glass of eggnog or two has me feeling a little goofy!
But arent they pretty? Speaking of pretty... how 'bout these beautiful earrings that my sissy Felicia made for me....

I LOVE them. Fel also made me two paintings by hand but I had a feeling she'd beat me half to death if I put them on she is 4 inches taller than I.... and much...much stronger.... and because she is my big sissy and I love her.... I wont. But I want to because they too are beautiful.
(this pic doesnt show how pretty these earrings are but it does let you see the gorgeous colors in the stone)

A little entertainment on Christmas day came to us by way of these beautiful canines! Buddy, Elsa and Hunter.!! Check out the three-dog snowy smack down they had!

Where is Hawkdog you ask? Poor Hawky got left at home!!!.... denied the fun and games of the other raindogs... who laughed and called him names... or was that Rudolph?!...

Hawky stayed home because three dogs and a thirteen people in one little space was cramped enough as it was! But he did join us later in the day for some eggnog...oh and some fun with a phallic looking chew toy that Auntie CC bought from Walmart.....but that is another story... for another day.

Actually, the real entertainment came from Uncle John playing his gui-tar... or was it Uncle John playing charades? Or was it Uncle John just being poor Uncle John .... the brunt of our jokes and the easiest and most lovable guy to tease?

But I have to say that the highlight of my evening came in the most unlikely of forums.... and at the dinner table no less..... Let me set the scene.... A lovely toast had just been made by my mother and all of us had lingering tears in our eyes.....folks had just settled in to their scrumptious meal.....soft candlelight flickered and Elvis played Christmas carols in the background..... people murmured mouth filled compliments to the chef... we sipped wine.... it was peaceful... tranquil....

When suddenly....down at my end of the table, my sister and I heard a very unexpected and highly inappropriate musical impression coming from my (clueless) nine year old cousin. No one but Fel and I heard it and we both couldn't help but burst out in a roar of laughter! .....

The entire table froze to stare at us in puzzlement... but we could hardly explain what we had just heard- or why it was funny!!!...

which only served to set us off into another fit of giggles...

..which of course led to the kind of bone deep laughter that makes your face turn red and the tears stream down your cheeks...

..which just makes it even harder to stop laughing because people around you start laughing at you laughing...

*sigh* OMG... It was funny....

Guess you kinda had to be there! *sheepish grin*

It was a great night, which I have to thank my beautiful and amazing mother for!

Thanks Mom!

I hope your Christmas was as filled with laughter and love as mine was!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to you all!!! And to all a good night!

A thousand blessing to you and yours!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

"It's. A. Famil-y... tra-dition!"

"...when that doctor asked me
Son how did you get in this condition
I said hey sawbones I'm just carryin on
an old family tradition!!"
- Hank Williams Jr.
So this year I have been elected by the heads of state (My mom, sister and Auntie) to take up a family tradition that was lost with the passing of my Great-Aunt Jenny a few years back. A Christmas staple in our household was Auntie Jenny's Carrot Pudding with hard sauce and lemon sauce. It was de-li-cous!!!
Last year was a very emotional Christmas for us all because it was the first we spent without Poppie. We tried out best to bind tightly together, to keep the hole that his absence created from splitting our hearts apart. It was difficult. We cried... a lot but the we laughed... a lot too. I am sure this Christmas will be no different. Let me be honest... I am crying now just typing this! But that ok... because I am smiling too. So this year keeping family traditions alive is more important than ever....
Where was I?
Ah yes! The Carrot Pudding. Here is the thing. I have no clue how in the heck to make Carrot Pudding. I knew it involved some kind of boiling? Tin foil wrapping procedure? And to top it off... I am the type that gets performance anxiety...
So.... I reached into my family cook book and pulled out the recipe that I had written down long before I ever actually considered making it... and long before Auntie Jenny passed. The ingredients looks a little wacky, bread crumbs, carrots...etc... but I figured I could handle that. Auntie Jenny used currents (which I hate) so I quickly cut them from the list and thought of adding my own touch with a little orange zest... just 'cause.

And I neared the end of the eyes widened in horror!!! There.... at the bottom of the page....a single solitary line......where the long list of detailed instructions should be... my heart stopped!... my breath came short! Where. Were. The. Directions?
Here is a pic of the actual recipe:

For those of you who cant read my chicken scratch... that would say "Stir together. Boil for three hours. Phone Auntie Jenny to find out how."

When I wrote that recipe out, Auntie Jenny would have been in her early 90s! I am....Brilliant!

So I figured... Hey! No worries. Mom will have the recipe! Right!?
I call Mom up on the phone. I explain the situation. She laughs. And then laughs some more (she is laughing AT ME by the way!!) "Oh Chelsi! You are funny!" She says.

"Yah, great Mom, thanks. Do you have the recipe or not?"

So I listen to her mumble while she fumbles through her cook book. I can see it in my minds eye, the same as it has been since I was a little girl.... A big red binder splattered in batter with dozens of full scrap loose papers dangling out the sides in a jumbled disarray. (I love my Mom).

And then she exclaims, 'Whoooop! Here it is! Here it is!!!"

We run through the list of ingredients. Its the same recipe. Great. "Directions?" I ask.

"Lets see what I have written here...." Mom starts reading them aloud...."It says......

tin foil

grease on

boil 3 hours
put lid on tightly..."

For those of you who missed those end quotes... you didn't miss anything!!.... THAT is all my dear mother wrote down for directions!!!

So.... as it would turn out... I really am carrying on a "family tradition"....

Now I am off to try to make this bloody carrot pudding. Merry Ho-Ho!

Mom wrote in my comments:


LOL! I laughed until I cried Chelsi.....I can't dispute anything here....every single comment you made is true, but, I will say how much trust I have in you being able to pull this off no matter what the circumstances are.

Just think about the glass being half full being that you did get all the ingredients even if the execution was missing, all the more fun. Now truly, what would life be if everything was carefully laid out for us to follow?"

My reply to that would be:

What would life be like if there were simple directions??? Oh....I dont know! Easy!!! LOL Yah, yah, yah, you are right (as always). I will do my best.

I guess the proof will be (literally) in the pudding!!!


Well, I have a large, heavy hunk of cake that vaguely resembles the carrot pudding of my memory. It is moist and smells like cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg.... this is good! I cant tell you if it takes like Auntie Jenny's version until Christmas day.
I have to admit though.... about half way through cooking this darn thing, I remembered that I never did like the actually cake part of carrot pudding.... I just loved the hard sauce (icing) and lemon sauce (lemony goodness) and would drown my cake with it until I could taste nothing but lemony sweetness. So... I made extra sauces!
What can I say, I've always been a saucy (sassy) wee thing! *she says in a swedish accent*

Monday, December 22, 2008

"Is there a problem officer?" that is not really how it went. But let me put it to you this way, when you cross the border from the US into Canada, and the Customs Official (who, btw, have more power than cops) asks you if you are bringing any guns, drugs or illegal contraband into Canada.... and you look up at him with your cheeks blushing fiercely, bat the eye lashes of your innocent big blue eyes and reply, "Why no, officer!.... just some cooled equine semen"... be sure to clarify and use the term "HORSE" rather than equine.... Because, apparently "equine" can sound a lot like "mine" to a border guard taken off.......guard...!!! It was rather interesting to watch his face turn three shades of red before he shouted, "You have WHAT!!!"

How would I know? Because I've been there. "Yes, I said "semen".... this big blue canister strapped into the seat beside me really does contain 2 straws of horse semen and some liquid nitrogen...any questions?..... Well, no, you cant open it. Or rather you can... you can do anything you like....but I'd really rather you not. The cold part is what keeps the little guys alive..."

Just so you know....That was a really uncomfortable conversation.

As a horsewoman you inevitably become comfortable with using such terms as "semen"without a passing thought... or casually discussing your mares heat cycle! "I'd stand five feet back from the rump of that mare unless you want to get soaking wet... she's a raunchy one!!" .....THAT just may make a non-horsey person squirm a little..... !!

So, the topic of my post was not to see how many times I could type the word "semen" (that makes five). I would like to discuss the concept of "stallion service auctions" ...

(I found these paintings here...I love them)

Tis the season to buy semen!!!! (6) For those of you who don't know, this is the time of year that a lot of organizations hold their stallion service auctions. The basic idea is that breeders donate a breeding of a stallion to a club, organization or charity and that group then auctions it off to the highest bidder. The stallion owners get to promote their stallions, the organization gets to raise funds and in most cases, the mare owners get a reduced rate on a breeding. Its a win, win, win situation. Most stallion auctions are discipline specific, such as the National Youth Cutting Horse Association. featuring some of the top stallions in the industry. Or the National Reining Horse Association's Sire and Dam auction.. In most cases (such as in the above listed) once the actual auction has ended, any breeding's that were not sold are listed on a first come, first served (pardon the pun) basis at 40-50% off the advertised stud fee. It is a great way to find a breeding to a really good stallion at a reduced rate!! Most auctions cover the stud fee only (winning bidder is still responsible for chute fees, booking fees and shipment costs).

For those interested, here is a list of Stallion Service Auctions here: You'd be surprised how many of them there are!!!

So.... Semen!!!! (7) *sticks tongue out* Ha!