Friday, November 30, 2007

Ancient Words video

Wow. This is one of those songs that has good words, but never gets me all that excited when singing it. But this video put things together in my head in an amazing way - very moving, somehow....

"Holy words long preserved for our walk in this world,
They resound with God's own heart.
Oh let the ancient words impart

Words of Life, words of Hope
Give us strength, help us cope
In this world, where e'er we roam
Ancient words will guide us Home.

CHORUS: Ancient words ever true
Changing me and changing you,
We have come with open hearts
Oh let the ancient words impart"


Let me know if you like it!


Wednesday, November 28, 2007

2 Weeks today!

My, how time flies! ;-)

I can hardly believe Anatolian Star has already been here for 2 weeks - I just now realized it. AND, Christmas is less than a month away. Yikes!


A little at a time...

Well, I am still working on getting more good shots, (due to my work schedule making it very hard for me to take photos before dusk!) but for now here is a cute head picture. I like his neck :-)

Little by little I am getting the knot in his tail less tangled. Not at the point yet where I can say with confidence that I'll be able to get it all out, but I really hope I don't have to cut any out...

He is getting more and more respectful of my personal space, so that is good. It seems like at first he was testing a lot to see who was more determined/stubborn, and I think he's figured out that I definitely intend to be in charge. So for the last couple of days he has been trying subtlety - will she notice this? Can I get away with this much? He's a quick learner, though! But, I have to admit, I'm still waiting for him to have a fit or throw a tantrum or something. I don't expect him to be perfect - but I guess I shouldn't set him up for being a brat either, by subtly expecting bad behavior due to his age and breed.

I am currently trying out an English saddle for fit. The only problem is that the girth that came with it is too short! Tomorrow I will use a 52" or 54" girth. Hopefully that will be enough.

On a different topic, here is an absolutely gorgeous Lusitano doing an incredible piaffe, or trot in place. Beautiful, and VERY correct. Aahhh....


Monday, November 26, 2007

Actual Picture!

Here you go! Hopefully tomorrow I'll actually have time to sit down and organize photos, and post about how the rides are going. Until now, here is a (casual) picture of Anatolian Star to look at! As soon as I learn my way around this camera better I intend to post some conformation shots and "fancy" pictures. Hope you're all having a great evening!


Saturday, November 24, 2007

First Rides!

I have now been on Anatolian twice, and he has a very comfortable back, not too bony! I also measured him, and he is 15.3 HH, or 61 inches. So that was a good guess, this time :-)

He's actually a little bit sluggish so far, in that he is unwilling to leave Mira and the pasture - certainly not leave them at a trot! I have been taking him and her out, sometimes together, sometimes separately, ever since I got him, but he still is doing his best to be herd bound! I will start up the hill and he'll meander slowly up, but around the time that he would lose sight of Mira, (who always calls a lot) he would stop. 'Till now, I have just had my sis pull on his halter to get him started again when he wouldn't respond to being turned to one side or to increasing amounts of leg. I didn't want to get in a fight with him, especially at such an early stage!

I think tomorrow on our ride, though, I might take along my purple "carrot stick" whip, just to see if waving it might convince him I'm serious. If he doesn't respond to that, I will tap his hindquarters with it. I think that will be less likely to make him "blow up" than progressively using harder and harder leg aids would. I have rubbed the stick all over him and he was not as reactive as Mira still is with it, so that is good. (She is a lot better now, but still tends to get wide-eyed and jumpy)

One funny thing is, remember how I said Mira was squealing a lot when he first came, as if to say that SHE would be the boss here? And how he never got aggressive back? Well, despite that, he is most definitely the boss! If he moves toward her pile of hay, she will leave it immediately. Sometimes she gets ticked off, and squeals, but she always gets out of his way. I've only seen him show teeth a couple times - he is still pretty calm most of the time - but he most definitely is the top horse! I have to feed him a little of Mira's Senior Soup every time I feed her, so that I can get a chance to put her into the round pen to eat in peace - he thinks her soaked feed is divino!!! One part about having him around cracks me up, and that is that I'm realizing just how much of a drama queen Mira really is. In a totally nice way, though!

He is also making me remember the early days with Mira, when I did a lot of ground work with her to build respect. He is somewhat more pushy than she was, so I am working on teaching him the same thing I taught her - if he's within 20 feet of the fence, he has to be facing me when I come over to feed or whatever. That was a major help with her, for some reason! So far he still tests me at every opportunity, just to see how much I am going to notice. Like, yesterday he purposely moved his foot to where it was almost stepping on mine, trying to put his head over mine at the same time. I was like, "Sorry dude, not allowed. Scoot." I am spoiled now with Mira - If you tap her gently anywhere on her body, she will move for you immediately, and she is not only respectful, but she's happy about it, too. I know I'll get there with him soon, and it'll be fascinating to see the differences in their personalities in the process!

Hopefully I'll have enough time to update tomorrow evening after my ride and let you know how the third one goes!

Thanks again to everyone for your nickname suggestions! I have been trying each one out on him, to see which one fits best. I will let you know soon!


Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Ladder needed :-)

So, I had to wait until I got Anatolian's hooves trimmed before riding him. He came with a western saddle, and I already own a western saddle. Both of them are too wide for him though, I believe. He has a couple white spots on his withers and I would bet they were caused by being ridden in the western saddle, as a saddle that is too wide will press on the withers. Thoroughbreds are usually much narrower in proportion than the Quarter Horses that western saddles are designed for. Fortunately, he doesn't have huge "shark" withers like a lot of TBs, so I don't think he'll be too hard to fit. Until I get a saddle that fits him well, though, I plan to just ride him in the bareback pad. I adore that thing anyway, it's SOO comfortable and secure! A lady I know is going to loan me her English saddle so I can see if it fits him. I continue to be amazed and grateful at how helpful so many horse people are. It's so cool :-)

Anyway, we tacked him up with the bareback pad today, putting my snaffle bit on him. Then I led him over to the "mounting block" that I always used with Mira, and surprise, surprise! I can't quite reach! He's just a bit too tall for me to climb on. (I cannot just put my foot in the stirrup to get on when using the bareback pad, as it would slide too much even though I use a breastcollar. I have to start out high enough to slide on.) So, I settled for just getting him used to me leaning over him and talking to him and petting him from up there. As usual, he was a good boy. Tomorrow I'll have someone give me a hand up, and while I'm out there tomorrow I plan to measure and see exactly how many hands high he is. I'm guessing just under 16 HH, so we'll see how accurate I am!

Oh! I also found a record of one particular race he ran in at Del Mar on August 9th last year! He didn't win, but oh well. :-) The people I bought him from did not have his registration papers, but I do know the name of the people they got him from, so I am looking online to try to find a way to contact them. No hurry, but it would be nice if I could get them eventually...

That's it for tonight! Please do vote for your favorite name on this thread. Thanks!


Sunday, November 18, 2007

Nickname Ideas

OK, I have been considering a "barn name" for Anatolian, as his full name is just a bit too much of a mouthful. So, I would like you to help me pick a good name from this list of possibilities! I want a name that is original, classy, and just "sounds right." Yes, I'm picky about names! But anyway, if you have an idea for another name altogether, do let me know!

Anatolia is an area in Turkey. There are a lot of Kurdish people in Turkey, so my relative who lived in Iraq gave me some Kurdish words I can use - I have put the meanings after the word.

Current favorite:
Andoly - variant of Anatolia

Sur - red
Esip (pronounce "uh-sip") - horse
Agir - fire
Rumelia - name of area in that region
Andolu - alternate variant of Anatolia

Please give me your input in the comments! :-)


Settling In Together

I let Anatolian out with Mira in the large pasture on Saturday morning, and everything was quite boring all day, which is great!!! There was some squealing during the day, but mostly they both just wanted to eat the hay I had put out. It was funny, until Anatolian arrived I hadn't quite realized just how small and cute Mira is. She is small, but she's put together pretty well so she looks like an elegant little doll, especially with that cute head. :-D

Both the horses were wormed on Thursday, and had baths on Friday. On Saturday I finished the baths (neck areas that I hadn't been able to finish before) and groomed them both again thoroughly.

Today I worked some more on washing, conditioning, and trying to detangle his tail. He has a big knot in the middle, but I'm hoping to be able to get it all untangled rather than cut any off.

Both of the horses have gone up the road with me and my sister for walks. We will take one ahead of the other, stop them, and walk the other past, and then repeat, to get them used to the idea that they are with the person holding the lead rope, not the other horse! Anatolian is cool with it, but Mira, though perfectly respectful of the lead, gets kind of anxious. One of the things I decided first thing was to immediately start taking one horse at a time out of the pasture and doing stuff with it every day, so that neither horse (hopefully) gets herdbound at all. I want them to realize that will be the routine!

I have discovered an interesting quirk of Anatolian's: He doesn't really know what treats are! He will sniff your hand if you are holding an apple, banana, or carrot, but he won't eat it! Even if you put it on the ground he usually ignores it - the only thing he will eat out of your hand is Mira's Equine Sr. pellets, and he inhales those!

Another thing about him: I have already seen him make the flehmen face a bunch of times, sometimes just when being petted. He also loves to roll buckets around and investigate everything with his nose... So I am being careful to gently discourage him from nosing people! But, it seems he is a mouth-oriented horse, so when I start teaching him tricks (which I plan to do for fun, after regular riding sessions) I should probably start with tricks that involve the mouth. Hmmm.....

Hey, I just realized this is my 101st post!!! Cool!


Friday, November 16, 2007

Introducing... Anatolian Star!!!

Anatolian is a chestnut 6-year-old TB (thoroughbred) gelding. He is a little under 16 hands high, was raced at one time, and has been used as a trail horse for the last year or so. So far he has been super calm and sweet, and I almost find it difficult to believe he is an OTTB (off track thoroughbred) due to his being so laidback - but he has the lip tattoo, so he was raced! I am SOOO excited to have him, and he and Mira are settling VERY well so far (through the fence)!

The Story:
Earlier this summer I actually visited TBfriends to get acquainted with Joe & Cathy, as I was planning to adopt a horse from them this fall. My goal was a tallish gelding between 5 and 8 years old, sound, athletic conformation.... overall, a horse with plenty of potential that would enjoy lots of riding.

Well, Friday before last, I was thinking about borrowing (on a feed lease) a retired broodmare from a fabulous farm near me, (a farm I had no clue was so close by!) as they were advertising that they wanted to give her away and I figured they might not mind leasing her. Then, a lady I know who is attempting to help some neighbors give away their horse, gave me her neighbors' # and told me to call them. Shortly after that, I was at my local feed store, and one of the girls there, who knows I've been keeping my eyes open for another feed burner (LOL), said "Hey, do you want to buy a horse?" I said "Well, it depends on the horse and the price!" She proceeded to tell me about a horse for sale, cheap due to owner moving away. He came with tack included.

Mind you, all this happened on the same day! I figured, it wouldn't hurt to at least check out this horse for sale, so I went to see him the same day. To my eyes, he looked sound and in great health, and was friendly and quiet. He stood still while the owner jumped on bareback and rode him around. Overall, he was almost exactly what I'd been looking for :-)

I had a local trainer check him for soundness, and evaluate his conformation/possible ability to make sure I wasn't crazy for considering him, got a definite green light, and decided to go ahead and buy him! We did have some trouble with the trailer, (long story, I'll have to post it later) and though we planned to bring him home on Monday, he did not get here until Wednesday! 8-o At least he made it here safe and sound. Phew!

It was so cute watching Mira when we unloaded him from the trailer! Her eyes just bugged out and you could almost hear her going "Yay! Finally another horse!!!" She was a good girl and didn't pull on the lead though, just stood there by my sis while I led Anatolian down the hill to the round pen that he is temporarily inhabiting. He was quite interested in her also, but not as nervous as she seemed to be. We fed & watered him, and then let Mira loose to wander around the edge of his pen so they could sniff each other. Instead, she kept following me and walking in circles around me, like "Whoa! This is so cool, but I'm WAY too excited... Help!" Everyone was "fizzing" - including the trainer who brought him over, who by the way is a really cool gal. :-)

Of course, since he arrived, I haven't been inside nearly as much as usual, thus the delay in getting my GREAT news to you guys! I promise to get a BUNCH of pics as soon as I can borrow the camera again. I seriously need to buy one soon...

Mira spent most of the first afternoon squealing and kicking toward Anatolian - true to form, she was determined to make SURE he knew right away that she is the boss! It wasn't a very convincing act, though, I'm afraid, because her squeals often sounded more like nickers :-D And from the first Anatolian has been nothing but submissive, friendly, and sweet, never squealing or kicking back, so quickly Mira settled down and just spent all her time hanging out next to his pen. Anatolian was also an "only horse" at his last home, and you can just tell they are both so thrilled to have a buddy again! Tomorrow I don't have to go to work, so I will be able to put them together - I'll keep y'all updated over the weekend, as well as doing my best to catch up with everyone else's blogs.

Talk to you soon!

(who admits to being a little excited)

Monday, November 5, 2007


Tee hee, this is why the rest of the family calls Mira "bucket-head." :-D Peacefully eating her 4th meal of the day...

Well, it looks like I am going to have to choose between TWO cheap/free horses (good quality ones, too!) in the next couple days! Sheesh, poor me! I mean, what a difficult choice! I won't say anything more right now, but I am DEFINITELY looking forward to having a rideable horse again, not to mention a companion for Mira! I always feel so guilty watching her watch the neighbor horses. I actually spent all summer trying to arrange a feed lease for a pony, and the owners then decided to give it to the grandchildren, which is cool for them, but disapointing for me. I actually had 2 other situations like that this summer, so I was getting pretty discouraged! I'll keep y'all updated on how this turns out :-D


Friday, November 2, 2007

It never rains but it pours

Funny, things keep happening in threes lately! I hope to be able to tell you guys about it soon :-D

I've got the borrowed camera right now, so tomorrow I will try to clean Mira up and take some photos quick before she rolls again! (Anytime she finds mud, she rolls in it!) Also, I really have to put up some pictures of the kitten!

Anyway, here are a couple links I found interesting recently:
Big Family Survival (How true, how like life)

Wild Hooves (Cool!)

You know you're an MK when... (Totally hilarious! But don't worry if you don't get it)

FHOTD (Too much bad language, and serious topics. But quite informative.)

Good night for now. It's the weekend!