Weekend Coffee Share; April Fun

Welcome to my weekend coffee share! The weather has been so wonderful we can sit outside on my porch and admire my roses that are blooming. Oh how I love Spring! Can I get you some coffee or tea? I think for those who celebrate I need to say Happy Easter. I do not have any little ones around for all that usually goes with the festivities and this is the first Easter Sunday in maybe 15 years that I am not working. I am planning on riding at the stables in the morning and then I need to figure out dinner. I did not plan at all for Easter Sunday, but I will go to the store and put something together. What do you usually do for Easter dinner? Any traditions? I use to always have a ham or turkey dinner of some sort. I’m hoping to have something nice and delicious.

I have been wanting to stay positive as there is always life that pulls us this way and that. There is a sweet friend at the stables that has gone through surgery for cancer and is now going through Chemo therapy. She said the surgery went well and they believe she will be cancer free after the Chemo is completed. She is such a strong woman, horse woman are amazing as she is coming to the stables on the weekends through this tending to her horse and I think having her horse is therapy and is helping her get through it all. She had hired someone to care for her horse during the week, but this person wasn’t showing up and so she asked me if I could help her and so she is paying me to ride her horse twice a week. I figure since I just have Chloe now, it would be my pleasure to help her. I know there are others that have lost loved ones and so I try and share happy fun things, and hopefully can help people smile. Even if it’s just for a little bit, life is tough and rough but can be joyous and fun too! I feel like I am not explaining myself very well, but hopefully ya’ll get my meaning!

I have to tell you the funny part of my good friend here at the stables, her name is Bonnie and that is my sister’s name! And even more interesting is guess what this horses name is? YES! it is Chloe! Hahaha, so there are 2 Chloe’s at the stables and now I ride both of them. My Chloe lives 2 barn stalls down from this Chloe pictured above! I am also taking care of another horse at the stables to help another friend and that horses name is Ava. So I am taking care of all girls, or mares! Let’s go girls! Haha, too cute!

I have to make sure I have the horses name next to the name Bonnie in my cell phone so I don’t text the wrong Bonnie. I actually have already done this as there was another Bonnie at our barn but she moved her horse, she is still my friend. So I have 3 Bonnie’s in my phone – popular name I think! I think Chloe is a popular name too. This mare named Chloe is very well trained and super sweet. Her owner wants her to get out on the trails and we have gone out and she is very good. I will ride her with a buddy for awhile because our trails can be scary since they are city trails. Our trails are not country trails so it takes time for the horses to get use to everything going on outside of the barn. She is easy to ride and fun in the arena. This last week I also rode my horse on the trails with my best friend.

We are really warming up here as we hit 85F (29C) today. We will be in the 80’s all this next week and so I will relish this before the summer heat arrives. I have been enjoying riding the trails and am very thankful my horse will go out by herself. She is very brave, steady and a great mount traveling around the blocks knowing every turn. I call them Chloe trail rides because she will sometimes make a turn left or right ~ to her liking! She’s so smart!

Here is a short video I wanted to share of her munching away on some grass after I had her turned out. She absolutely loves the grass, they all do. She gets plenty of food and always has some hay to eat in her stall all day long. The fresh growing grass is such a treat and I don’t let her eat too much, but it is a delight to let her graze. I hope you enjoy! ❤

I Love the stables here where I board and keep Chloe. The horses are well taken care of and the facilities and people are amazing. There are like minded ladies and men (only one man here owning and riding his horse), he is outnumbered with all of us horse crazy ladies! He is such a gentleman and helps us ladies with moving that DG dirt into stalls and other chores if needed. We have a great group and I am truly thankful for all our pony friends. We all look out for each other! 😀

I wish everyone a great Easter weekend and (maybe) you’ll be able to enjoy the time with family. I know there are many areas that this is not possible and my heart goes out to you all. I know I have been able to get in some cherished family time which makes my heart full. I am sure everyone will be safe and I hope for smiles and good times. I enjoy sharing and I will include a link here if you would like to visit other coffee shares. I will thank Natalie for hosting, she is doing an awesome job and its so wonderful to read and meet up with others.

Caring Cowgirl,

~Diana ❤

My Weekly Smile; Feb. 18, 2021

I decided that I needed to smile and this beautiful rose I saw and stopped and took a photo sure makes me smile. It’s that beautiful pink color! And I can imagine the beautiful smell as I just Love the smell of roses. How are you this week? I am doing good and as I sorts things out I am the type of person that looks to the future and remembers the past with super fond memories. I have been enjoying our mild winter and for those of you in places of wintery weather, my heart goes out to you all. Especially in those places that do not commonly have such frigid cold and are suffering with power outages and the like. I pray for warm weather soon!

I have been working and enjoying my time at the barn with my horse Chloe. She makes me smile as she is always very happy to see me and we enjoy the trails whether it be with a trail partner, or not. My best friend and I have been able to go out which is great therapy as we chat about life as we ride along! When my friend is not available, it is just Chloe and I. She has so many trail miles and knows the way, like she has GPS in her brain! Which she does right? She totally knows the blocks, the turns and knows exactly where she is going!

We are all tacked up and ready to head out on the trails. She and I just ride along and I take in everything. From the song birds, to the clouds in the sky. To the cars that go by, which on this day there were a lot of folks that waved as they passed by. This is rather common in our town since it is a small community and everyone so friendly. Today I got more than normal waves! I felt so special. Haha, it truly was such a nice feeling. Here is a video of my trail ride on this day. 😀

This trail ride was so wonderful for us both. Enjoying this pretty day today!

I am actually riding out on the trails more often than not which is my goal. I own horses because I love to ride! I sometimes wish I could afford a couple more horses so that I could get back into competition riding, but at this point in my life it is just a dream. Maybe it will always remain a dream because competing is expensive, and I don’t have that horse at this time, but I love every minute I spend with my girl Chloe! I think we all should have dreams, its important to our psyche and so this is what I dream. I dream of living near my grandkids some day too. It may or may not happen, but for now it is something I have had to put on the back burner because I just got a new job. So we will revisit this in another year or two.

I really wanted to share a smile post this week, it makes me feel good to share! So my smile is for the mundane things I do each day (they aren’t all that mundane, haha, but it is the same routine day in and day out!) Makes me feel warm, sane and happy.

Have a great day, week and weekend!

Horse Crazy Grandma,

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; Taking a Short Break

Welcome to my weekend coffee share. Can I get you a cup of Joe? or maybe some tea? Sigh, I have had a crazy couple of weeks and so I am going to take a break. I wanted to write one more coffee share this weekend and let everyone know I am doing okay. For those of you who may not have read my last post I had to euthanize one of my horses last weekend, I’ll offer you the link here. But I totally understand if this is something that may be hard to read and I respect any and all decisions. I wanted to write a respectful and thoughtful post for my sweet boy, and it has helped me process the whole event. Anyone who owns animals knows these times are difficult but happen. Now I have to take one of our dogs to the vet as she has a growth on her belly (near a mammary gland). I hope it isn’t cancer, but it is getting a little bigger and is bothering her and now has some swelling so off to the vet we go. She is a super sweet girl, so I am praying it will be benign. We have another older dog who is just about completely deaf, but doing good otherwise. It seems the circle of life continues and so I thought I would take a couple weeks off of blogging. I just want to be in a better place and so I think since I have to deal with my sweet girl, this would be a good idea to take a break.

Haha, I caught her licking in the photo. They are the sweetest pups and Love my hubby! Not that they don’t love me too… They love my attention but the border collie is more attached to my hubby. It’s all good, it just is what it is. I can’t take dogs to the barn as they aren’t allowed. I know I don’t talk about my puppy dogs much, they are loving and are loved but you all know the center of my life is really the horses. I am surrounded by furry friends and love them all! ❤ ❤ ❤

I have been going to the stables every day to take care of Chloe. We have been going out on trail rides and I have to say she is super calm and seems very happy. Part of the reason why is because we don’t have Zack along as he was rather a bugger, nipping at her, he even use to bite my stirrup as we walked down the trail. It would be akin to an annoying brother or sister. You know, when you are young and they just don’t stop annoying or bothering you? That basically was Zack on every trail ride. I tried my best to get him to stop, but he never did and so Chloe would walk a little bit faster, sometimes moving over or nipping at him. You can totally tell how much at ease she is now. I have known this about the duo, but I couldn’t leave him at the barn alone with all his anxieties. As I write this I can say that I have felt guilty the last few days because there has been a sense of relief. I was always worried about Zack, now I don’t have to worry any more. Here is a cute photo of Zack I wanted to share!

It feels good to see him and I want to get some photos printed and framed. I may use this one but haven’t decided. Or I might just print up a photo book of all my photos of him. I think I would enjoy that too. I thought I would share some photos of Chloe and I on the trail this last week.

I moved her over one box stall with the paddocks and Zack was to be right next to her. She has more room now and I can tell is much happier with the room and the look outs. She can see what is happening and is content. She and I are doing good, and I am so thankful I have her to focus my energy on and it has made the healing go faster. I have lost 2 horses while owning Chloe. I had a Morgan before Chloe and when Chloe was 6 years old (I bought her when she was 2 years old) my Morgan passed away. It was another rather tragic event, we found him very ill and he passed away before we could get a vet on sight. I have been told by my vet he probably had an internal rupture (a twisted gut) which can happen with these rather fragile equines. Sorry for talking about this sad stuff, obviously on my mind with all the recent events. Chloe and I moved on from that and then 5 years later adopted Zack. I don’t want another horse, it will just be Chloe and I for a long time.

I don’t know what I will do when she gets older or starts to develop medical issues. She is 17 this year. Hopefully, it will be many years before I have to worry about all of that and we can just enjoy the trails. I think for my mind, heart and soul a short break will do me some good. So I appreciate you all, I won’t be gone long and I will most likely continue to read other posts and comment when I can. I am so happy to have this lovely coffee share group of amazing people and all other blogging friends here on WordPress. Natalie is doing an awesome job hosting and I am so thankful she took on the coffee share!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and week ahead. Stay safe and healthy!

Love,

~Diana ❤

Tribute To My Sweet Boy, Zack

Last weekend I shared that I was feeling a bit in a funk. It was because of this big beautiful animal that had me in a worried state because he is the sweetest horse but also a bit neurotic. Zack has separation anxieties, he is what they call “herd bound” where he whinnies and calls for Chloe if she is out of sight, or too far away from him. He has always been this way and most often these horses that have these kinds of anxieties are their own worse enemies. We try and make their life less stressful and so I have tried my best over the years to keep these two horses that I own near each other so that Zack would not be living a life of anxiety.

Back to last weekend. Zack was living in a barn stall and across the aisle was Chloe. Zack’s barn stall is a box without a run. Chloe across the aisle is in a box stall with a run or paddock. My plan is to move Chloe over one stall so that I could move Zack next to her, but here lies the dilemma. Once next to her, the only way he could see her is if he walks out into the run or paddock ~ they can’t see each other if they both are in the box stall while eating or drinking. (I wish there was windows in the barn. This is an old wood barn built with no windows. Many barns do have windows with bars so horses can see each other.) So we made a plan of sorts. I bought plastic mirrors safe for animals to put up in the stall so he could see himself (another horse) which should calm him and I asked the employees of the stables if they could feed my horses out back in the paddocks so they can eat next to each other. In this way, I thought Zack would end up being more comfortable with a bigger stall and right next to Chloe, his herd mate.

As Chloe, Zack and I figured out even more ways to ease anxiety, one of the smartest things I taught myself was to pony Zack next to me so that every single time I rode out on the trails he always came with me. I know I made his life that much better by doing this because he was very stressed out when I took Chloe off the property and left him behind. Sometimes I had friends or my sister if she was in town, ride him out with us and so that worked too. But that was not every ride, so I was very proud of us as we have had a wonderful time out on the trails. I even posted just over a week ago where we rode seven days, a whole week out on the trails! We were doing so good. I am very happy that even though Zack was declining in age, losing muscle tone which is normal, he was feeling good and his anxiety was always right there but manageable. It would never go away, hence why I was so worried about moving him to a different stall. I just figured I was in for some weeks of anxiousness and I didn’t know what to expect. But what happened next no one could ever predict!

As I write this I thought I would be unable to make sense of things and would be crying my eyes out. I have done plenty of that, and is partly why I waited to write this because I wanted it to be understandable, relatable. I knew this would be cathartic and this would help start to mend my heart as I honor my dear sweet boy. I can tell you it has been the most absolutely shocking weekend and my heart is broken but I know he is in a better place. You see, last Sunday I had to euthanize my sweet boy Zack. Sunday was the end of the month so the stalls were open as the other horses had moved out. I decided to put Chloe in her stall and I went and got Zack and put him in his new stall and as I did this I closed the barn door to his stall and walked over to get their Equoxx pills (horse pain pills, like Ibprofen for people) that I give them before our trail rides. That’s when I heard this banging noise, like someone was pounding the wood on the barn. I looked up and saw my pony sister coming my way, with a look of terror as she said he jumped over the door!

I walked around the corner and there he lay unable to get up. My girlfriend said he just walked up to the door with his ears up and looking straight ahead and he lifted himself up with his legs up high and tight to clear the door. What made him think he could jump out of the barn? He was in this stall for barely a minute, maybe two. He walked to the back and I walked away where he promptly walked to the front and up over the door he went. He somersaulted out and landed in a way where he basically could not move anything but his head and neck. I don’t want to be too graphic, his weight and body mostly landed on his shoulder and neck. (it was not that gruesome, no blood, its just really sad) because of his catastrophic injuries once the vet arrived it was in his best interest to be euthanized. I am so sad. He went so peacefully and I owe a huge debt of gratitude for by bestest friends (ALL OF YOU AT THE BARN) for the love, support, loving on Zack while we waited for the vet. THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART! YOU ALL ARE AMAZING WOMEN! ❤

I love so hard. When you love hard it just hurts so much but that’s me. It is worth the hurt to love as much as I do and these animals, these huge giant beasts have such personalities I can only try and show through my photos! They are smart, have feelings, they play and call to you! They melt my heart! I wanted to write a tribute to him because he was such a huge part of my life, including my blog. Imagine, people from all over the world know my beautiful horse Zack and Miss Chloe!

I will be okay. This is not my first rodeo, I could write a novel on loved ones I have lost. I had been beating myself up because I thought I could have done better, that I screwed up somehow making this move with him. But it has been said to me that no sensible horse would do what he did. He use to be a jumper, so to jump like he did – well, he knew how to jump. But he is old and the door too big for him to jump. He suffered from EPM which is a protozoa living in his brain and maybe this affected his thinking. Maybe he was not with a sound mind, but no one can know what he was thinking when he jumped out of that stall.

Because this is how I roll, I would like to end this sad post with smiles. I want to remember my sweet boy with tons of SMILES! I don’t want to look at photos and cry. I am planning on getting prints of my favorite photos. I am so thankful I have a horse to Love on as Miss Chloe needs me and her and I are doing good. The vet said it can be helpful for the herd mate to see the passing, so I took her out to see Zack after he was gone. She did not want to sniff him or get too close. The vet said that’s okay, they each do their own thing. She has been nothing but stoic and strong. You would not know she lost her best friend. Definitely, I believe he was more attached to her than her to him. I am feeling better each day. The self loathing is gone (you just hate yourself for a day or two because you think what have I done!) But I am smart enough to realize that no one could have seen this coming or know he would do such a thing. My best friend said to me, he had 26 years of a beautiful life and one hour of pain. Run free my friend! ❤ ❤ ❤

With Love To You Zack!

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; As The Wind Blows!

How is your weekend going so far? I can’t believe it’s Saturday and it’s late afternoon. I am actually drinking some ice tea because it is a warm January day. It was 86F today and very windy. We get winds here called Santa Ana winds. These winds originate inland and affects coastal Southern California where I live. I thought I would try and get in a ride this morning before the wind was to pick up. I didn’t succeed as the wind blew us down the trail but I am so proud of my ponies today! I thought it not a safe idea to video my ride, but before the wind really kicked in I did take a couple of photos. 😀

As I head down this block, the wind was reasonable and just gusty. I thought I could head down this way which made my ride twice as long before the wind would get stronger. I checked the weather app earlier in the morning or was it last night? And the wind by late-morning was to be around 12 miles per hour, or so I thought and I thought I had plenty of time. Little did I know that within the next 15 minutes or so the winds were going to pick up. You can’t really see the end to the road ahead, but it turns where you see the mountain rise in the background past Chloe’s ears in the photo to the right and as we headed down the turn to the start of the next block home the gusts turned into 18 to 20 mile per hour sustained winds, with stronger gusts! We had to cross the street and as we walked this next block home with what felt like howling winds which were very warm, my ponies just walked along like another day on the trails. I am so very thankful for their steadfastness.

They didn’t seem to blink an eye to the wind, and I am thankful these strong winds were not blowing any debris, lose tree limbs or trash which can all spook even the steadiest horse. As I made it up to the last block and street to the stables I could feel Chloe increase her pace. Yes girl, I know you want to get home and I did too! I did not plan on riding in this rip roaring wind! I think I would rather get caught out in the rain! As I arrived at the barn the other ladies that own horses there were all saying, boy are you brave! Haha, I didn’t plan on this I said. It really wasn’t that windy when I left and I was gone all of 45 minutes! CRAZY WEATHER!

I am giggling sharing these photos as my good friend Jane was sitting nearby as we chatted and Zack just would not stop begging. Haha, he just would not stop with his goofy sideway looks! His way of begging for something please! I thought why not take more photos. Oh my, I have so many photos of these ponies, I never tire of them and love to share. I am so very thankful I can ride them on the trails as they age and they are a bonded pair. I think Chloe would be fine without Zack, but Chloe is Zack’s best girlfriend and where ever Chloe goes, Zack goes too! It just is, what it is!

Can I get you a refill? As I sit and think about this last week I was feeling rather emotional. I know that is normal right? There are many reasons for these emotions, missing my family in Arizona ~ so much so I am going to try and visit in a few weeks if possible. I am hoping to visit there in February because my grandson will be turning one near the end of Feb. Wait what? I can’t believe it and I am so excited about baby Teddy’s birthday as this year has gone by fast and am so sad it has been near impossible to spend time with my grandchildren. No wonder I am so emotional. I am also saddened by all affected by the virus. We have employees out and some in the hospital. I am now getting tested weekly. I just checked and I am negative, so thankful as I continue to be needed at work filling in holes of absenteeism. This next week I will go in early and stay late, thankful I get paid over-time now. I think it will just be for this next week, hoping things get better soon.

As we all deal with all these changes and I have read of others affected by more lockdowns in their area, or mask wearing where they hadn’t been but now it is deemed necessary. I am thinking maybe sharing and writing about this is somehow cathartic. So, I’ll say it here to stay safe and stay strong. We will all make it through these crazy times and all we can do is take one day at a time. I am glad to see vaccines rolling out even though it will take time for this to become effective especially since there are booster shots involved. Some how I feel better expressing my feelings on this subject, so thanks for listening. On to happier news…

I do have some really happy news and that is my daughter adopted a kitty last week. If you were to read through my blogs (or have been a follower) my daughter once owned one of the brother kitties that I share that both now live with my son in Arizona. Wolfie was such a handful (that is an understatement) and one of the biggest problems is he would not stop eating the Guinea Pigs hay and so he would upset his stomach and she ended up at the vet so many times that she decided to give him up. So, off to his brothers house he went. (That’s her brother and Wolfie’s brother, Haha!) It has been one year now, and she found this beautiful black kitty that is about a year and a half old. She hasn’t decided on a name, but she is sweet and calm. Here is a photo. 😀

Thanks for visiting and having coffee with me today. The link up you can find here, and thank you Natalie for hosting the coffee share. ❤

Happy crazy trail riding Grandma,

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; Begin Anew

Welcome to my coffee share and before I get started I want to thank our new host Natalie the Explorer for hosting our coffee share gatherings on WordPress. I share my blog posts on another social media so those people would not really know what I am talking about if I don’t explain that this is linked to other coffee shares within WP. Anyways, I am enjoying a nice cup of coffee can I get you a cup too? I bought a new cup at a small farm in San Luis Obispo, we call it SLO for short. It’s a neat little farm where you can buy lettuce to feed goats, and they have chickens a couple of cows and two ponies. They have a store where they have lots of fresh produce grown on the farm and fresh eggs, and lots of jarred items, jams, chutneys etc. It is fun to visit there and this time I decided to buy this coffee mug because it was so pretty. Can I get you a biscuit or english muffin with your coffee? I have hot tea and ice tea too!

As I write this I am thinking back and I wanted to write during the week this last week but it started out really busy. My work is extremely short handed as positive Covid cases has hit the night shift and in numbers. We have at least 8 positive cases and other’s out because they were near a positive person, a protocol our work has put in place to help stop the spread. Per state protocols the remaining employees are to be tested which my work set up this last week and we all were tested. My test came back negative. As they clean and we all take precautions they do have an action plan if the spread gets worse as we are dwindling in numbers. But as the weeks pass hopefully those sick will recover and return to work. I don’t talk much about the virus, but since it is spreading and reaching closer it is affecting my schedule and so I thought I would share. Last week I worked earlier 11a – 7:30p. I will work this schedule one more week and then hopefully go back to 2p – 10:30p.

Either way the earlier schedule isn’t all that bad as I am still able to go to the barn before work. I live so close to the barn (it’s just a mile away) that I can get there and ride and return home, change clothes and am off to work. I have some photos of my ride this week. I actually was able to ride 3 times but only took photos on one of my rides. What I noticed when I rode at 9:30am is the morning shadows as I rounded the block. So these are my shadow photos! I just LOVE them! 😀

The mornings have been crisp and cool. Usually in the 50’s(F) and beautiful sunshine. I finally got to my day off and it was super windy! Darn it all, it was too windy to ride. But I will be able to ride tomorrow and am hooking up with my best friend who is now leasing a horse at my stables. Tomorrow will be our first ride together on her leased horse which I am really looking forward too. We haven’t been able to visit as often and so we will be able to chat and catch up with our lives during our ride. It will be great FUN!

I wanted to look at this year anew, the dictionary describes anew ~ in a new or different and typically more positive way. I think we all need to look at this year we have started anew. My ideas are thinking positively towards the world and each other. I just need more positivity which I try and have each day as each of us take care of ourselves and our loved ones. I have furry loved ones as well that need my time and attention. So I am thinking my word for this year is ANEW ~ I do not usually have a word for the year, but I think I will have one for this year!

Thank you for visiting my coffee share. I hope you all are safe and sound and I enjoyed sharing with you my happenings. I wish you could go on the trail with me, as the weather here has been just fantastic this time of year (other than the wind). I have a kitty near me and was on my lap earlier so I will close with one of my pretty kitties. I hope you all have a great rest of the weekend and a good week ahead!

Shadow Loving Cowgirl,

~Diana ❤

My Last Ride of 2020!

As 2020 came to an end I was able to enjoy the morning with my horses before work. This photo is actually from a few weekends ago but I thought it was a good opener as this is me, and this is what I do as I groom them and get them ready for a ride. I tie them to the hitching post and they are very well behaved. This is where I tack them up with saddle and bridles. Before I head out on a ride, I often turn them out either in the bigger arena or the small round pen to get them moving. With the nights getting pretty cool, they can get stiff and need some warming up and on this day the static electricity in the air was something I captured on the next photo or two!

Chloe’s tail was not spectacular like Zack’s. I am not sure why his was more static charged and hers was not, but her tail is black and would not be as dazzling in the sun. I get excited over little things such as static electricity and hair! Haha, It reminds me of when you blow up a balloon and then rub your hair and you can pull the balloon away and your hair stands on end going to the balloon. This just happened in the round pen when I was exercising them, so it was a strange sight to see!

It was a crisp morning New Year’s Eve as I prepared these ponies for my ride. It was calm and serene, no wind blowing yet and as I mounted up and headed out I can tell the horses had a nice step to their gait and were ready for the trails. As I turned the corner out to the trail and headed down the street, the horses were walking so well together it was as if we were all in sync and enjoying this beautiful, lovely day. I was able to put Chloe’s reins around the horn of my western saddle, and I looped Zack’s rope around the horn. Not too tight, just lightly looped so that I didn’t lose the rope and it was right there if I needed it and the remainder of the rope was in my other hand as I reached for my camera to record this last day of my 2020 trail ride.

My ponies know these trails so well. I was calm and very relaxed which in turn makes the ponies very relaxed. They can feel your anxieties, your nervousness, your breathing. They can feel you relaxing, your calmness, its their language to feel and recognize things humans don’t even think about. They can feel if you are “there” in the moment, or if your mind wonders and is somewhere else. They are always “in the moment” as they live their lives in the here and now. They are flight animals and it is their instinct to be aware of everything.

They see things you don’t. They hear things you don’t. They know with each step if it is safe or not to continue down the road. They have my life in their hoofs, as I ride on their backs as each step they carry me down the street and around the block in unison as if we are one and connected. Zack is right in step by Chloe’s side. Chloe is like valium to Zack. She brings him peace and calmness as she is the alpha mare and exudes confidence in each step. This is how my beautiful ride went on this gorgeous morning as we completed our ride around the block. I took a video of my ride and want to share it. In the video Zack is walking so nicely and walks up fast almost to pass Chloe! BUT he can’t because he needs to stay back a bit behind. You will see her as he puts his nose towards her, she will nip at him to get him back where he belongs. I don’t let the lead go to long and he will slow a bit and walk where he should. They are very mindful of each other and I try and be just as mindful back to them in our threesome wondering the Norco trails.

This is the best video I have made with two horses in hand. I hope you enjoy as I practice and am enjoying these ponies!

I am not to far into my ride when I made this video but to be able to do this with solid horses that feel confident is a testament to what I like to say “Time in the saddle” as with anything you do in life, practice makes perfect. I am so proud of my horses. They bring so much joy to my life and I feel truly blessed and thankful I can share my life with them. I thank my family for their patience and love for them as well. I have enjoyed many rides throughout this last year, and being able to go to the barn and enjoy this is how I have been able to survive the craziness of 2020.

Happy Trail Riding Cowgirl,

~Diana ❤

My Weekly Smile; Dec. 30, 2020

Welcome to my weekly smile! I have a lot to smile about this week with the rain and my pretty ponies. We had some much needed rain which I have a love hate relationship with as I LOVE rain, but its aftermath not so much at the barn. My horses live in very nice accommodations now so I am not complaining as much any more. But the arena gets really wet but drains pretty fast after the sun comes out the next day. As long as the rain storms are spread apart, then its a beautiful thing. One of the most beautiful displays of the storms that come through here in winter, is all the snow that falls on our local mountains! It is just gorgeous and my camera probably doesn’t do it justice as the snow capped mountains are captivating! Here are a couple of photos, how can you not smile!

The above photo was not easy to take as I was riding my horses, asking them to stand still “Whoa” I said, as they kept taking one or two steps on the trail. I have Zack’s lead rope, Chloe’s reins, haha, holding the phone I zoomed as much as I could and took this photo. I think it turned out pretty good considering all it took to take. I am a happy camper. The first photo I shared was just as difficult to take as all Chloe wanted to do is head home, and the barn is just past the tall palm tree on the left down the trail and as I tried to “Whoa” she wasn’t going to stop. She wasn’t bad but I thought I better snap a photo so the camera focused on her instead of the background which is a bit blurry but I thought a fun shot! I really like my shadow in that photo too. Photo Fun! 😀

Can you believe it is December 30th? Just one more day of 2021 and even though this next year may be more of last year as I think it will take months if not longer to feel “normal” again, what ever normal is these days. But this year seemed very long and drawn out so it’s end is something I think we all long for….. I miss my family in Arizona, I pray for all affected by this pandemic, the lives that are loss and the loved ones sick. We all here are doing well and praying for this to all go away hopefully, eventually soon. I don’t want to pretend like I am not taking things seriously as we all are taking precautions and doing our part the best as we can. Hence why I like to share my smile posts. We all need some smiles, something to look forward to and something that makes us HAPPY! I will end with a photo that I took last week as I was challenged wearing my huge Christmas light bulb earrings with a mask. I have so many Christmas earrings and some are very large and putting on and taking off a mask was not easy. Luckily, once I put on the mask it stays on the whole time I am at work, until I eat lunch or go home! 😀 😀 😀

Have a wonderful, smiling New Year! Cheers to you and your families!

Love, Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; A Week before Christmas!

I am enjoying a nice hot cup of coffee with my favorite creamer, sweet Italian cream. Would you like coffee or a cup of tea? Maybe ice tea for those enjoying summer right now? I can’t believe in less than a week it is Christmas! WOW! This month is flying by at record speed. I am in a happy place getting most of my shopping done and I even managed to mail out some Christmas cards. I only receive a handful these days and they are fun to receive. I have some nice cards I was gifted from my daughter (ones she bought and never mailed) that I used. I enjoyed sending the cards, fun to write a little something and send on their way. I have friends/family that do the photo’s as Christmas cards which are so special and I love to receive each year. Maybe one of these years I’ll do the photo cards!

I was hoping to get more fingerless mittens made and I already have given a few away as gifts. I have a lot of yarn so I can make a bunch of them and I think will sell at the local craft fair. Or, I can really get my act together, keep stitching and have them all ready to mail out to family next Christmas. I will share what I have completed so far.

I forgot to offer you something to go along with your coffee? I have some fresh bananas, just thinking healthy as I am planning on baking cookies next weekend. I can’t bring cookies or baked items to work as they don’t want any food sharing. Understandable, so I thought I would wait and bake with my daughter when she arrives for Christmas. I really want to bake sugar cookies, maybe some different flavored ones and get creative. I’ve been watching a lot of baking challenge shows and one of them is the Christmas Cookie Challenges and they make cookies that have all that elaborate icing. I have a bunch of horse cookie cutters and I thought it would be fun to decorate them and then hand them out to the ladies at the stables. I am a complete neophyte to Christmas decorating on this scale. I watch them as they make a border, then flood the cookies, then decorate wet on wet. Just some of the terms I see them do as I watch some amazing decorating!

It looks like great fun and I thought what better way to practice but on horse sugar cookies! Maybe I will make some lemon sugar cookies or cinnamon (like snickerdoodles) pecan sounds good too. I could make chocolate cookies for the darker shades for the horses. Oh I have so many ideas! Haha, I am getting excited to bake!! I can’t think of a good segue into my next subject which I am so passionate about and I have some new photos (I have so many photos on my phone, it’s just crazy!) but I feel like documenting these beautiful horses as they age and fill my days with so much joy and pleasure. I don’t have many photos of them in the small pasture they have at the barn. They enjoy being out together so I thought I would share! 😀

Today was farrier day, they needed their hoofs trimmed. At one time they both wore horse shoes, but not any more. With their age and arthritis issues there is no need to have horse shoes. Instead of shoes, Zack has trail boots I put on if needed. Chloe’s leg issues are so bad that the farrier can’t pick up her right back leg. She has an old injury (broken stifle, it is a hairline fracture that is healed and lots of scar tissue has formed). It truly is amazing Chloe gets around as well as she does. She is lucky to be alive, as there is no way she would survive surgery on that huge joint as she is a big girl. (The stifle of a horse is equivalent to our knees, so this is her knee joint. A devastating injury, but she protects that leg and is thriving.) Anyways, it was a great day at the stables, beautiful sunny warm day! Here is a few more photos!

My horses, which I love to call “my ponies” live up in the barn. These were the only open stalls and I am actually really liking them because I know they are sheltered from the wind and rain. Some of the horses at this stables are nervous being up in the pasture because it is away from the paddocks. I’m so thankful Zack and Chloe do really well up in the small pasture since their stalls are nearby. My horses live across from each other way up where the aisle starts on this pretty red barn! My ponies are out in the pasture when I took the photo. You can make out a white horse Zack and Chloe is there but she is hard to see! She is standing at the gate if you click on photo and zoom in. Haha!

Thanks for having coffee with me today and I will end with one last Christmas photo. The tree we bought has lights that change colors, so I took another photo with the colored lights! So pretty! I hope you all have a wonderful, beautiful Christmas! I know many, many zoom and video chats will be held to keep us as close as we can be with family! ❤ ❤ ❤

Enjoying the holidays, Cowgirl loving Grandma!

~Diana ❤

Thank you Eclecticalli for hosting our coffee share link up! Click here to visit!

My Weekly Smile; Dec. 10, 2020

I really want to participate in this weeks smiles and I have exactly 15 minutes to write this post! Haha, you would think that its easy peasy but I like to put some thought in the lay out and what photos I want to share. And then I re-read my posts over and over again for many reasons. Continuity, spelling errors and I may not be grammatically correct most of the time but I want it to sound like me! (I’m a little OCD, Lol) And sometimes I get stuck and my sentences or thoughts flowing out may not make a lot of sense so I have to rewrite the sentence so things flow like I want.

As I quickly put this together I am hoping it flows nicely and well, if there are errors then that’s what it is as I want to be spontaneous and share my happy week. Today was a beautiful day and I was able to go out on a trail ride. I share so many photos of my ponies which I will today as well. But they sure make me smile over and over again! I wish Zack was a bit more calmer in his box stall as he still gets a bit upset when he can’t see Chloe across the aisle. She will go outside her box stall in her run and stand behind the part of the box stall next to the opening to her barn stall. I took a photo of her stall so you can see the opening and she stands behind this.

There is never an ideal situation for these ponies unless you have a lot of money and can afford your own horse property. One day there will be open paddocks where I use to keep them here as people do eventually move to either other areas or other stables. There is one woman here moving to Texas but she has a box stall with a run, which is more expensive than where Zack is currently living and if I move him he won’t be able to always be able to see into Chloe’s stall. So I think I will have to wait for open (outside) pens or paddocks.

These ponies always bring great joy to my life and now that my schedule has settled down I am able to get into a routine with them which helps them be calmer and more at home. Well, my 15 minutes are up and I have to get going to work. I hope you are all having a great week and thank you for visiting my smile today! Here is a goofy photo of Chloe and she is sending you a kiss!

Happy, trail riding Cowgirl!

~Diana ❤

My Weekly Smile; Nov. 11, 2020

Happy Veterans day to all the veterans currently serving our country and all who have retired and who have served this great country. I have shared this photo before when my daughter promoted to Major, but I surprised my hubby by ordering this canvas print of my veterans that I Love so dearly. I have never ordered a canvas print (all my photos go to Google cloud, then I order from them photo books and decided to try canvas prints. You can order regular prints too. It’s quick and easy so I love it!) I am not trying to write a commercial or promote Google photos, but I am so impressed with its ease I thought I would mention it. I know there are many places to get prints and photo books.

My daughter is finally recognizing her accomplishments, giving herself some credit for all her hard work. I tell her often how proud we are as graduating from the Air Force Academy is no easy feat and she did this with flying colors 10 years ago. This year she has transferred to the Space Force so we will see where she goes on this new career path. My husband is a Viet Nam Vet, and very proud of his service. He served 8 years in the Air Force. He did not fight in Viet Nam, he was supporting the troops that were there.

I am smiling as we honor all that have served. Again, Happy Veterans Day!!

I am on day 3 of my new job. Switching to day shift has been a bit tougher than I thought it would be. By the end of the day I feel jet lagged, as I stand all day at work which also includes walking around but it feels like a long day. I know I am feeling a bit tired too because I am learning a new computer system. So my brain is full of all this new stuff. It isn’t difficult now that I see it in action and I am seeing the flow of work through this computer system. Last night driving home it really felt like Thursday, and its only Tuesday! Haha, 3 more days to go but I am feeling refreshed this morning. 😀

I am smiling at this new adventure and am sure once I am on my swing shift schedule I will feel better. I don’t have much time in the mornings to attend to my horses. It’s all I can do to go turn them out and make them run around the arena a bit to stretch their legs. These photos were from yesterday morning. I like the rising sun in some of the photos!

I am so happy I have the time to see these pretty ponies every morning as it is my bit of normalcy. I can’t wait for this week to be over because I do not have time to ride. But I tend to them, getting some blood flowing and moving their stiff legs as it’s in the 40’s now at night. I groom them and put them up until tomorrow. I miss riding, but will ride this weekend and any day I want starting next week! So very THANKFUL this new job decided to create these new hours just for me!! They have never employed someone swing shift before, I feel like a guardian angel is looking out for me! SMILING from ear to ear when I think of my new hours! One more photo to share, I hope you all have some great smiles this week. I think there is a lot to smile about. 😀

Transitioning Smiling Cowgirl! Loving my Veterans! ❤ ❤ ❤

~Diana

Weekend Coffee Share; Crazy Week, Busy, Busy!

I can’t wait to share a cup of coffee or tea as we catch up! I think either one will go great with the left over cake we have and it tastes wonderful! Yes, another birthday in the house. It was my youngest sons birthday on Nov. 2nd. I can’t believe how busy it’s been here with one birthday leading into the next and while all this is going on, I am trying to train my employees as I get ready to move on from one job to another. I know when I stated above crazy week, it was one of the craziest for me since add to all the pressure of quitting one job, to start a new one, add elections and all the other things life throws at you that can make you feel crazy! I am glad this week is over. Can I get you another piece of cake and refill that coffee?

I have to say that because of this crazy, busy, busy week I have fallen way behind reading all the blogs I follow. I know, no apologies needed as they are all just waiting for me to read and catch up on. Now that I think about it, it just may take me a few days to go back and get to everyone. I keep forgetting I do not need to head to bed early because I worked my last night shift last night!! WOW! Pinch me! I can’t believe it!! Maybe I will get to all the blog posts sooner than later! But I digress from birthday celebrations as I’d like to share a few more photos. 😀

I can go through this last year with a laundry list of craziness. For the world, a pandemic that is still here and praying for all. Then I go and decide to move my horses from one barn to another only to be unhappy enough to move back. Wait what? The horses are settling in back at the old/new barn, just had to say that to keep things as confusing as possible! I’m being silly, but its true I am all over the map. The horses recognize they are back to their original barn where they have been living for at least the last five years. I am so proud of them as they settle into their new barn stalls (because I’ve lost their old stalls, they were rented out) and since it is almost winter here I am really appreciating the warmth these stalls will provide. It’s all good, but crazy days all around for my horses and my girlfriends horse Gracie!

I decided to buy Zack and Chloe new halters and lead ropes. It has been years since I have bought new ones and I thought how fun to get these new barn stalls with new halters and leads! I went with red for Chloe and a dark blue for Zack. You can see these halters on them in the photos above. I am feeding them horse treats!

Zack’s photo is rather funky as the angle makes his head look big, but I still wanted to share! Haha, but this is the barn stall where he lives. I am very thankful the barn employees take Zack and Chloe out and put them together in a small pasture while they clean the stalls. It is a free turn out, I am so appreciative! Since I can breath a sigh of relief with the move of my horses, I am breathing another breath of stress. As I am sitting here writing this, my shoulders are killing me! Oh the stress! I need to let it ALL GO!!

The stress was from this job I just left. It is not an easy thing to leave a job that you have worked at for 20 years!! Oh my, it was so incredibly hard to say goodbye and since the managers said I am welcome back any time to visit (and they said they would welcome me back to work there if I so choose to go back) it made the departure a little bit easier knowing I could visit. I hate goodbyes, I am more a “see you later” type of gal and I plan on eventually making some visits.

How is your coffee or tea? do you need a refill? I know I do as I’m a bit sleepy after my night shift.

In my quest of this most crazy year, moving horses and lastly finding a new job, it is my hope that I can visit more often these sweet grand children! Isn’t she just so beautiful? but then I am prejudice. My weekends going forward will be free, something that I have not experienced in 20 years. I can’t wait to visit both my grand daughter and my grand son often. I’ll close with his cute photo!

Thanks for visiting and listening to my rambling craziness. Now that I’ve completed this last week, I know things will settle down. I just walked away from a very stressful job, that I loved and worked so hard at and I am leaving with the door open to return some day if I so choose. I am hoping the new job is all that I envision so there won’t be any changing jobs again. I also think they are in shock, as they did not see this coming and quite frankly I think I am in shock too. I can’t believe I will be working day shift starting tomorrow!

Crazy, super busy Grandma,

~Diana ❤