That title might be a slight bit premature. I won't really be back on the horse until next weekend when Cartman gets his shoes on. However, I am getting back into that mindset after what I consider a long lay off.
Cartman completed MRRT in the beginning of October, right before we moved. Oh yeah, it's just been a lay off from actively riding... we have been very very busy....
After several years of thinking about selling our beloved Castle Rock property and moving we finally took the plunge last summer. In typical Todd and Karen fashion, we weren't actually ready to list our house when we found THE ONE.
We had a few things to complete and lots of clean up to do on our house, since we'd lived there for 14 years. In August we each took a week off work to get some of the to-do list items done. For fun we also scheduled a few days to view properties and see what was out there for us.
Originally we had wanted to move south towards Ridgefield or LaCenter. It quickly became evident that 20 acre properties were scarce there, and while there were some beautiful ones, they were extremely expensive.
There was nothing around Castle Rock.
One day, after another disappointing viewing Todd got a wild hair and pulled up the MLS for the county North of Castle Rock. This was kind of ironic, because Todd has sworn off Lewis County after our last dealing with some property up there, where we got burned on some land.
He found a gorgeous horse property and brought the computer over to show me. I tried to calmly examine the listing but I couldn't after I got to the land and barn section. It was awesome.
We called our awesome realtor- Kristina Mack who is also a horsewoman and she set up a showing for the next day.
Long story short, after 2 months we had a new home. Our Castle Rock house sold to the first person who toured it and we actually signed papers two weeks before the formal purchase of our new house. It felt a bit weird to be renting and basically homeless for 2 weeks with 5 horses and 2 big dogs!
We moved in on Oct 19th and have been loving it ever since.
A few wrinkles have, of course, surfaced over the winter. What was advertised as a "Mud free" horse set up isn't really mud free when you have 5 rowdy TBs tearing around, The paddocks off the barn were made with hogs fuel footing and it is past the end of its usefulness.
I knew this before we moved in but by the time all was completed it was too wet to fix them. I despise hogs fuel after Winter Scratches Festival 2005... so I intend to dig it all out and replace with a layer of sand/gravel/pea gravel. This will have to wait until the ground is dry.
On a positive note, I'm getting lots of extra work out time dragging the manure cart through the foot deep rotten hogs fuel. Sigh.
Cartman got his shoes pulled in November so he has had the winter off. I think I rode one time, just to keep my membership up in the Washington Trail Riders Distance Derby (it requires some mileage every 60 days).
I hauled him down to Portland to get his teeth done on Friday and also to have a vet look at the odd bump on his head. It appeared shortly after New Year and was at first a small goose egg over his right eye. It then spread out across his forehead all the way to the other eye. I figured it was not a tumor after it smoothed out somewhat but still wanted to make sure it wasn't anything hurting him.
I have been enjoying working out at the Gym and lifting weights all winter. Actually, I have become obsessed with it. I joined a Pauline Nordin Fitness Challenge in January and have seen great gains in the muscle department and have lightened Cartman's load by 10 more pounds as of Friday! Squeeee!!!
It's going to be interesting trying to juggle the weight training schedule with Endurance conditioning, but I really need to find a way to make it happen.
Mom sold her house in Arkansas in the first week of listing it, and was able to pack up 18 years worth of stuff and move out here with us before the weather got too bad. We've been having a good time and it was great to be all together for the holiday's this year :)
Here are some pictures from the last few months. I "lost" my camera battery for about a month so was unable to get any photos of the moving and first 6 weeks or so. I finally found the battery, in the charger plugged in the wall of the dining room- where I had placed it the day we moved in. Lol.
|looking at house from the barn|
|after first ride on new property|
|barn from back porch|
|front porch view|
|celebrating Amber's Birthday- I made the cake!!|
|Todd and Cartman|
|Mt St Helens|
|Mom in the dining room|
|Christmas, they were socks- LOL but she liked them anyway|
|St Helens again|
|Mom on back porch|
|Post football picture|
|Knothead aka Cartman|
|Best dog ever.|