Light Artillery - Stories from 2007
July 9, 2007
March 13, 2007
Good Beautiful Morning! Today is going to be a wonderful day! It
is absolutely gorgeous weather this time of year. Warm enough to
give baths and play around, but not too sticky-icky hot. I gave all
the horses a bath last week. Shaila and I went for a ride on a breezy
afternoon. I said to her that I could smell her hair all the way
behind her. She laughed and said it was not hers. It was the horses!
They all smelled of coconut and other fruity scents! They had to
get a bath because earlier in the week I had burned parts of the
pasture and woods behind the house, and the soot made a wonderful
dress-up time for ALL the pets. My yellow lab, red nose bull dog,
2 chestnuts and palomino were ALL BLACK! The morning I awoke to them
they all looked so innocent. It was quiet the sight. Arty didn't
have a white spot on his face it was a faint gray! Forget the white
socks too! The farrier is coming this afternoon. Arty and I also
have a trail date, so today is going to be an all horse day! Wewhoo!
He's still just as comical as ever, always interested in any and
everything! After today's ride and the next trip to the store I should
have more stories and pictures to share.
P.S. I worked at Red Hills Horse Trails Fri-Sunday. Each horse that
passed I scrutiny examined (none matched up to MY Light Artillery!)
but to see if I could recognize them from yall's farm! All the jumpers
and competitors have me itching to ride this afternoon!
February 20, 2007
Good Morning! Hope all is well at the farm. It has been quiet chilly
down here, can't image the weather further north. Every morning the
horses trot around. They are always cuttin' up and dashing around
in the field. Trees and the barn are obstacles to go around, and
the planted pines in the back are race paths.
I haven't been able
to ride as much as over the break, I must sadly admit with a full
school and work load. But when Arty & I do go out we really make
it count. We have taken many night rides in the DARK! (with funny
sounds and movements in the woods) Sunday afternoons are a guaranteed
ride though. These are normally about 3-4 hours. Considering me and
Shaila's mounts, you can bet that we make good time covering ground.
So it should be a given that we come to ditches, creeks, puddles,
ponds, bridges, down or fallen logs, as well as sighting abundant
The horses don't spook from the white-tails moving in the
trails and in the palmettos, they seem to enjoy it. Fleeting quail
keep them on their toes. And a opossum is broad daylight stopping
to focus at these big things with things on them is always a sight!
One of our favorite rides is down the power lines. This sounds innocent
and calm in nature, oh but what an adventure it is!!! A down fence,
lightly beaten path, waterline are all up for exploration!
kid had nothing better to do than follow us so we played hide and
go seek. Having four hoofers over a four wheeler was a great advantage.
The game turned more into tag than anything, eventually we lost sight
and sound of one another, and Shaila and I were off for more ventures!
Arty has almost 100% adapted to my style of riding, that when I
lean this way I want that, and this cue means this...etc. He can
sense my excitement, free will attitude, or even most importantly
when it's time to be serious. The first part of the ride was all
giggles, jumps, and canters, and random detours, with no end destination
in the mind. Heavy rain had washed much of a clay cross over away
over a creek. Arty had been so excited before prancing around and
even whinnied once, but he felt me change and he sniffed the ground,
pawed at it, and we crossed quietly and safely!
We have progressed
so far together. In the past month there were a few butt poppings
in the air, but no bucks, and they were "Ahh did you see my form
over that jump, or I want to go faster...please"...or ahh blue skies,
NO get off of me or mean bucks! They were small bursts of glee! WEEE!
He is still just as much of a character out from under the saddle.
He's not ringing the doorbell, but he will
knock...and HONK MY HORN in the truck. I was home alone inside. I had unloaded feed and hay
and left my truck by the barn with the window down...yep he had been
investigating the changed parking space and sniffing feed fumes,
by himself Reba and Gambler were off grazing and enjoying the sunshine....but
leave it to Mr. Big Arty...HONK!!!! That turkey, he is sooo funny!
I hadn't seen the movie Dreamer yet. Last week Lance,
Shaila, Erin, and I all watched it, the second time through we all
fell out asleep like lil indians on the floor. I am sure we all dreamed
our horsey dreams...so of course bright and early the first thing
we wanted to do was to go riding! Those type of movies always seem
to do that. Watching the race clip of the movie got me to wondering
if you think any of Arty's previous owners or trainers might have
any videos or pictures of him running!?!?! I might look through that
info you gave me when I first picked him up and see what I can find
Going out to catch the horses has never been a chore.
they follow me any and everywhere, except for that morning. No we
played run from Amanda, Shaila, and Erin. Ha ha watch them try to
catch us. Well Gambler got suckered in with some treats. I hopped
on bareback and rode down the drive way trying to catch the others
attention. I jumped a pine limb, and oh look a there Arty is flying
with a good three ft over clearance...He was jealous! But also easy
to catch at that point. He was showing me he would jump to and follow.
We saddled up and rode by the dairy farm...and saw....a brown tall
slender "cow" with a rider...NO IT WAS ANOTHER HORSE! KEWL!
Gambler and Arty did big prances up to the other horse. I know we
were dancing on the tree tops. It was the herdsman from the dairy
farm working a 3yr old Paso he brought with him from Mexico! His
pony darted sideways and our well seasoned boys just watched. Interests
rose though, so with some distance we let them meet. It was an unexpected
surprise. Later in the ride Arty and Gambler speed walked against
each other progressing into a quick trot then pulling into a canter,
but then stayed side by side contently. This was nice, me and Shaila
could talk for the first time while letting them go faster than a
trot nest to each other. Normally I am in front setting the pace,
and Gambler brings up the rear. The best way to start another busy
hustle week is with a ride, the horses have one ear up at all times
and swivel the other listening to us chatter and at the surrounding.
Arty has a vet appointment this afternoon to get a
health certificate. We have a big trip planned for the weekend! Some
friends and family are all getting together to go down to Leesburg,
FL. There is a Angus beef farm that invited us to help herd some
of their new calves, back into the regular spring area. There is
about 1,500 head of cattle on 3,000 (!) acres! We will camp at least
one night of the trip. I think this will top off all the bonding
Arty & I
have had already! At least he is used to cows that run at him and
MOO (the Holsteins at the dairy farm) and these we're going to herd
will run AWAY! I am sure there will be many pictures and stories
to tell! Take care!
January 20, 2007
Oh the stories to tell! We go together like peanut butter and jelly! Ha ha.
I got a lot of riding in over Christmas break. Family was up a lot. No one else is yet to ride Arty except up the driveway. Everyone is in awe of his movement, and he makes me look good! The secret is he looks harder to ride than he is. Shhhh...
No Arty isn't ringing the doorbell yet, but he does knock! One of the pictures I sent you looks just like blinds, but a closer glance will show.. ears...a white marking...a HORSE! He is such an attention ham!
I know why he is orange. He eats enough carrots to have the vitamin A overload that would turn a hippo orange! He likes to race the old station wagon that delivers the mail to our house out in the middle of no-where south Georgia. I always know when the mail women is there. She'll rev the old chuck wagon up and turn sharpe around our corner lot. Arty or Mr. Big beats her every time! The wagon probably tops out at 20mph (downhill), but still. I am going to have to figure out the camera so I can send a video! If I am home before dark I lead him down the drive and around the property to get the mail, and take a slight detour, over for a fast food pickup of Rye grass and crimson clover to go from the field. The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence!
One of the best traits Arty has for trail riding is he collects him self instead of freaking and startling himself further. A deer, no exaggeration bounded out of some palmettos about 7 feet in front of us! WHOA!!!! WHEW!!! GEEZZZ! He stopped, snorted, blew, turned his neck to make sure he wasn't alone and still had four legs. Then went on like everything was fine as long as no spotted MOOing horse eaters were around he was fine. And actually we can walk...well okay float, prance and dance past the cows now! He is such a good boy! I am now known as the girl with that big cool horse and those pretty two little ones that drives a big truck.
Arty just charmed one of our neighbors! Ooo can he work it baby! Not only did he come over all interested in their four wheeler, but nuzzled her neck. She had just got new perfume that day, and said he was the first man to tickle her neck since. It was funny. Then he just wouldn't leave her alone. The son even enjoyed rubbing his face. He would turn sideways for a neck scratch. Arty likes little kids. He likes to lower his head to be on their level.
Shaila, her sister Erin, and I went to go get our hair colored. We all finally got the courage up to go un-natural! We all got the dark mahogany, auburn, and golds, just like....Arty's tail! Now we all really do have pony tails! I've said before Arty is a puppy. If I rub his ole side just right he will turn a nibble, not nip or bite. He's such a baby.
My baby did manage to get my off though. Ooooo! It was the first cool evening, windy, first ride in about 3 days, new shoes, and extra rider (on Gambler)...and an open plowed field not far from the house. We had already had a nice canter, and he was feeling it. I would let him strut it all the way home. I asked for a walk. He gave it...for a while...well the next time he stopped for me..stopped trotting, and went a-buckin' rodeo style. The 5th buck got me side saddle, no reins, one stirrup, kinda. And the 6th buck got me off! He bolted for home. Realizing he couldn't get back in, came back over the Gambler and us in the field. And when he saw me I literally saw his spirits drop. His change in expression was enough to show me he was just feeling good! Getting my breath back, he did everything to please me. He stood perfectly for me to mount, and was quiet the gentleman the rest of the ride. I think we needed one of those experiences. He has had one crow hop since over about 20 hours of riding. And this hop came when Gambler got out of sight when I took Arty down a side trail to do a few jumps.
Oh and jumps...he is the most coolest bestest funniest mostest awesomest horse ever! He he we get to show off! He hasn't refused a creek, ditch, of log yet. He is smart about where he places his feet and whether to step over/across or jump. I love my pet horse. He was asleep in the hay, scared me actually because he was laid out flat, and didn't flinch when I called him, but turns out he was just snoozing away! I went and sat in the hay where he lay. He acknowledged my presence by lifting his head, laying his nuzzle on my lap. Awe...he has my heart! I laid by him for probably 10 minutes!
This holiday season I was thankful for my family, job, friends, house, and pets - especially ARTY! I need a video for his mud bath too. Some of the break was warmer, and there are many lakes and ponds around the house...Arty has come to have a direct pull to them. He sees water...and a good time in one! He loves to blow bubbles and splash. KAAh-PLOOSHH! Kaahh-Plouushhhh! ha ha. He soaked Shaila. Gambler doesn't even have to splash, Arty has enough flying water to irrigate a field.
The other morning I was out in the rocking chairs on the porch, and surprisingly he wasn't all up in my business, but was making me laugh. I was some what dazed out, but he snapped me out of it. He was stretching. Literally stretching on purpose! He was in a position like he was going to pee, nope lean forward, bounce 1 and 2 and 3 and hold. Lean forward, bounce 1 and 2....then he would grunt a little then he stretched his neck all up into the sky...then to each side! WHAT?!?! I knew he was doing it on purpose then he walked over like, Ok all stretched all loose for a ride. Ready?!?! HA HA! I am going sometime this week to buy that book, "Stretching for you and your horse". I think he deserves it.
Lance drove my truck earlier in the week and I had his. He said when he got home the horses acted all crazy coming down to the gate. He got out and they kinda just went back to horse life. He said they thought I was home. Awe my babies! Arty is a wonderful part of my everyday life!
Thank you so much again,
I don't think I will ever be able to show all my grattiude!
Light Artillery makes himself right at home on the front porch on Thanksgiving Day. Wait till he learns to ring the doorbell! Amanda will never get any rest!