Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Solid Season Opener

The Wilmington Christian Academy middle school basketball team had a successful season opener as the Lady Patriots defeated Myrtle Grove 32-15. After jumping to a big lead early, the subs played the biggest part of the game. In fact, we only tallied 2 points in the fourth quarter. B had a great outing defensively but struggled with her shooting. She did have three steals and broke up several passes and blocked out very well despite her being the smallest player on the team. She played point guard for about one quarter over all and ran the floor pretty well. Not bad for her first ever school basketball game if I do say so myself. Their next game is Thursday night.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Harvest Jubilee

We attended the Four Beats for Pleasure Harvest Jubilee show this weekend. The weather was quite warm but beautiful. With the all of the dry weather, the arena was a veritable dust bowl. The complex we were at is a converted dairy farm so there were no hookups for overnighting. Having the generaor in our horse trailer was big plus. We certainly advise anyone shopping for a trailer with living quarters, to consider adding that option. In the afternoons, being able to use the A/C made for a refreshing break between classes. B participated in a number of classes and finished with a pretty good weekend. She posted a 3rd place finish with Captain in the Youth Model class. Riding Deuce she finished 3rd in AGB Novice Western GAYP 2-Gait and 4th in AGB Western Open GAYP 3-Gait.

Monday, July 30, 2007

My Kingdom for a Washer

The nature of the equine life dictates that a good deal of time must be spent searching for the right piece of equipment, attachment, tack, decoration, etc. One wouldn't think that should also be the case for basic farmstead hardware.

Deciding to install twelve foot swing gates on each end of the barn isle seemed to pose no unexpected challenges. Mounting of the gate latch plate to the rounded corner of the support pole at the isle wall would only require a quick trip to the local hardware store for a couple of 5/8" hot dipped angle washers to fab up a square fit. A week and a half later, I finally cut the ribbon on this 'low hanging fruit' project. Pair of twelve foot gates: $116, two sets of 12" lag bolt hinges: $24, pair of heavy duty support thumb latches: $32, eight 5/8" HD galvanized angle washers: Undetermined. Trips to Agri Supply, Big Blue Store, Tractor Supply, two Lowes, Best Hardware, Stewart Hardware, McPhersons Hardware, True Value Hardware, and even Wal-Mart tallied around 250 miles on the not so diesel friendly F350 dually. Much to my dismay, was I not only surprised to find the widespread unavailability of these babies, but I was additionally taken aback when I found myself having to describe what they were and why there would be a use for such an item anywhere in the universe.

The final resolution was an on-line order from a company named Fastenal which was turned around in a matter of two days. I suppose wit a bit of time on a calculator I could render a final price tag for my beveled buddies but the cost in cash would pale in comparrison to the anguish I suffered in trying to understand why something so simple could be so hard.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Any port in a storm......Not

It has been an unusally dry and typically hot summer for our area. Our annual rain deficet has been gradually increasing each week. The numbers will show we did a lot of catching up today. The truth is, most of it wound up in the river. I was off today, babysitting one of our house horses, Lexi, a 65 pound boxer fresh off of surgery. In the early afternoon I passed off a few distant rumbles of thunder as yet another summer shower that come close but yet so far from our dry pastures. In a surprisingly short period of time we were beset with the most severe thunderstorm we have had in this area in some time. Frequent (and close) lightning, heavy rain and hail prevailed for almost four hours. Under the conditions, it was some time before I could bring myself to wade out to open the barn and bring the horses in to what would surely be a most welcome respit from the unrelenting rain and hail. Whether it was the deafening pounding of the hail on the tin roof or the sensing of my uneasiness, the almost unanimous concensous was the world was a better place out n the storm. The only decenting vote was from Captain, our eldest Walker who was probably confused and beleived it to be dinner time. Soggy, I returned to the house, more convinced than ever that the term 'horse sense' may be a bit overstated.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Coming up to speed....slowly

Never been here, never done this. Bloggin' that is. I'll start things slowly and keep it simple for my own sake, as well as that of anyone who may stumble in here. We are located in the southeastern region of North Carolina. A year and a half ago, we purchased a farm which had been used for horses and donkeys, mostly. Quite a bit of history got us to this point, but I'll work through most of that in forthcoming posts. Although the place was a dream come true for us to purchase, it is a place which is in need of much repair and upgrading (pics forthcoming). At present, we have five horses. Three Tennessee Walkers which are my Wife and Daugther's show horses, a pushy Arabian which has much to learn and a Halflinger who is basically retired in place. Our learning curve for all things horses is still a steep climb. Pasture care has been a focus for this spring and summer as our pastures had been left to their own resources for about two years. Barn renovations, shed recovery and arena construction are the major projects of priority at present. Each has been getting only token attention to date but we have settled for concentrating on the arena as the lack of one is having a detrimental affect on our show training and preparation. That said, the biggest challenge of all is probably that time management has never been one of my strong suits.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

A Happy 4th of July

Over the 4th of July weekend we attended our first Firecracker Jubilee/Liberty Bell Classic horse show in Williamston. The event is held at the Senator Bob Martin Horse Complex. It is a terrific facility with plenty of stalls, parking and hookups. The event is actually two shows rolled into one. Each class has two judges who render their own results, so two places, or ribbons, are issued. One judge represents the Firecracker Jubilee (FJ) and the other represents the Liberty Bell Classic (LBC). By far, this was the biggest show we have been envolved in to date. The only drawback was the heat, but the 4th of July in coastal North Carolina...what else could one expect. The show was busy but our results made all of the work worth it.

When it was all said and done, C had taken a 2nd (FJ) and 3rd (LBC) in the GAYP Novice Rider Adult 2-gait on Red. Also riding Red, C took a 6th place finish from both judges in the Country Pleasure English Adult 2-gait.

B stunned us all with a double Blue Ribbon while riding Red in the GAYP Novice Rider Youth 2-gait. She also posted a 4th (FJ) and 6th (LBC) in Youth Model Geldings and finished a solid 2nd (FJ) and 5th (LBC) in TWH Trail Pleasure English Youth (13 & under) 2-gait. Even considering her double blue ribbon ride, what was probably her most satisfying effort was a 5th (LBC) place finish in the TWH/SSH Trail Pleasure English/Western Youth 2-gait Championship Class against a large field of accomplished riders and horses. It was a weekend well spent that garnered us a fistfull of ribbons and a bundle of memories that will last a lifetime.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

New Neighbors

After what I know had to seem like an eternity for them, C's Mom and Dad finally have seen work begin in earnest on their new home, right next to us. We are so excited and relived about having them here in the country with us and I know they will be glad to be away from the rat race that Leland is turning into. The footers have now been poured and some measurable progress should now start taking shape. This has been their dream for a long time and we are so happy to be able to share in it coming true.