Friday, January 11, 2013

2012...A year in review...somewhat...

At the beginning of the year, I hurt my back, so no sorting for 3 months. Trying to play catch up, and then had my accident in May. Slammed into a solid steel piped fence at about 25mph head first. Thank God I wear a helmet when I ride as I know I wouldn't be here today had it not been for said helmet. I was able to qualify for finals, barely. But during that time, I received a phone call from the secretary of SWTPA. A board member had resigned and I was next on the list, so I took it. As the year went on, a lot of members got to know me better because I worked a lot of the gates and always tried to make them smile when they entered and left the pens. I also became known as "helmet head" due to the fact that I am the only one that wears a helmet. Not the most flattering of nick names, but I am proud that I love myself enough to wear one. Oh, and the threat of my husband that if I don't, he will sell the horses. So I am blessed in knowing that he loves me enough to keep me around. LOL Anyway, I'm off track...

When the time came for our elections, we had 12 spots coming open. (We have 14 spots total). I was nominated again. To my surprise, I was elected back into the BOD for SWTPA. My motto is, "I want what is better for the whole of the organization, not just what is best for me". Because what is best for the whole, will be in the end, what is best for me. I want the organization to succeed and grow, not be tore down. Okay...My mind is wandering again...

Anywho, at our first of the year meeting, I was nominiated and elected as Treasurer. (No one else wanted it.) But, it is a big responsibility and one that must not be taken lightly. So I will do the best job I can.

To be honest, this is a nerve racking just being on the board. You literally learn the meaning of: "You can't please all the people all the time."

Anyway, should you read this and are interested in Team Penning or Ranch Sorting and are close by (North Texas), come on out to a show sometime for Southwest Team Penning Association. Our shows are the forth Saturday of every month with the exception of February, it will be the third Saturday. Our web site is and we would be happy to see you and answer any questions about our sport.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Long time no blog...

So, it's only been over a year since I have posted anything. Will try to make this brief yet interesting for any of you that still follow this blog.

Still have all my horses, Summer, Shelby and Hank.

Summer did a driving play day back in February of this year. 5 classes. She and I brought home 2 seconds and 2 thirds. I think there were 5 horses in each class and they were speed/coordination type events. She had the speed and I had to remember the pattern. And forgetting the pattern of the one class we didn't place in was what caused us that class.

Shelby and I are still doing the ranch sorting gig. I am still enjoying it. I didn't get to compete as much as I would have liked as the first 3 months of this year I was down in my back and taking lumbar injections. Then in May when I was coming back, I had a real back accident while team penning. I mean ambulance ride to the ER bad. Was shocked that nothing was broke. Haven't penned since, but still sorted the rest of the year. Hope to do better in my class next year.

Hank is still somewhat of an expensive pet. What he doesn't know is that his extended vacation is just about over.

Wow, it was brief and yet, not interesting. LOL Well, the runaway horse and buggy at the February drive was interesting (it wasn't Summer of course). And my penning accident was interesting. But, as it is just a few minutes before it is time for me to go home, I will have to save those stories for another blog.


Friday, November 18, 2011

November 2011 pre SWTPA

Well, it's finally here. The finals. What a great year it has been.

Granted, I haven't done that great but let me tell you what this year has given me. New friends, a new horse, a couple of checks, better riding skills, and lots of great memories.

I have decided that I am only going to compete in the class I started in. The 3 sort. With all the stress that is bearing down on my shoulders right now, that is all I need to do.

So, I will get there early, cheer for my friends, ride my pony, and have fun. Because like I have said before, if you ain't having fun, go home.

Wish me luck. (and by luck, that I keep the horse between me and the ground) lol

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

SWTPA Octobert 2011 and other news

What a pretty good month it's been.

On Sunday, Oct. 16, my Aunt Joyce, Uncle Wendell, my mom and my friend Brandi came to the barn to enjoy my horses. I actually got pics of my mom and aunt on my girls together. That is going in a frame! They stayed for a few hours and played with some baby mini's we have out there. After that, Brandi and I went for a ride in the pasture. This was Brandi's second time to be in a saddle. She took a real shine to Shelby, so I let her ride her. I was a tad nervous as I didn't know how Shelby would do with a green rider, but she was awesome! I was so proud of both my girls that day for taking good care of my family and friend.

Mom on Shelby, Aunt Joyce on Summer

Brandi and Shelby

I went to a sorting jackpot last Wednesday Oct. 19th. I was just gonna ride around in the arena as I hadn't ridden hard since I hurt my back last month the day after the last SWTPA show. So I was just going to lope Shelby a little and work on my role backs, stops and turns.

There were several of my friends there and I wanted to so some visiting as well. Vicki told me that if I wanted to sort that she had some openings in the novice class.

Well, if you keep up with my blog you know I couldn't resist. So I signed us up. Then Courtney asked if I had any open rides and I said, "sign us up!". Then I went ahead and asked Mike (Vicki's husband) if he wanted to ride, so that made three rides. Then Katy (Mike and Vicki's niece) asked if I wanted to ride. There's four. LOL What the heck, Roy takes checks. LOL

Vicki and I got 7 head. Courtney and I got 6. Mike and I busted : (. And Katy and I got 8.
The only run I had for the short go was with Katy. But I was very happy with all my runs. In the end, Katy and I placed 4th and earned a little money back. So my $80 tab only came out to $45. And that run earned Katy some points for the belt she is going for.

This past Saturday was our Oct SWTPA show. I was only going to pen as I wanted to go buy some hay afterwards. Ron, a boarder at the stables, wanted to go with me and see what went on at these shows. He was very impressed and even had a good chat with the arena owner, Roy.

Before the 12 penning started, that is the open class and what I believe is too much for me to handle right now, needed 2 novice riders. Ron and I were sitting next to the announcers booth. I look up at ReeDee (the announcer and judge) and she looked down at me. I said, "Don't look at me like that." She then said, "you can do this Tammy." Oh, all right then. Shelby was already saddle and all I had to do was warm her up. So I did it. I was teamed up with two open riders. I believe they are either siblings or cousins. Trent Field and Morgan Field. Trent is rated a 6 and Morgan a 5, so they could only use a 1. Those kids are good. And I mean GOOD. Trent got the first cow and and the other two cows with our number was standing to the far left and side by side. Morgan picked them both up and off we went to pen. We got 3 head in 20 second for the fast go of that class. That means we automatically got a $25 check and 1 extra point. Well, due to a rookie mistake, we did not get any cows in the short go. We did have them and one shot past me. So Morgan went after it. Trent was in the hole and I was the wing. I didn't know what to do and stood in the gate waiting on Morgan to either bring the stray cow or push it back across the foul line. Then I heard DK and Trent telling me to get out of the hole. They said it several times but didn't tell me where to back too. So I backed towards Trent. Wrong move. The other 2 cows came out and shot off like rockets. Now we are trying to pick them up again and we ran out of time. : ( DK later apologized and said that they were telling me to back up but never told me to back up where. She said had they hollered get to the wing, I would have known where to go. But, live an learn. We placed 7th. But, at least we placed I guess. I just felt bad cause these kids are used to winning a check and I sure would have like to get my first big association check on Shelby.

After the 12 class, Aunt Joyce and Uncle Wendell showed up and watched me do the sport and I quickly coming to love. So that was pretty awesome.

I did 3 runs in the 6 pen class. I drew up with a girl named Amber and Sid, then Sid and Jason and then Jason and David.

Jason, David and I would have had 2 head and a short go, but David didn't realize we had 2 cows when I started yelling to pen. We went to the end to pen and we had 1 Angus and 1 Charolais. David didn't realize that the Charolais was a good cow and let it slip past him. So we only got 1 head. He kept apologizing. Oh well. Poop happens. Just glad it didn't happen to this rookie. LOL

I had no short goes in the class and was actually grateful for it. I was starting to feel sick.

After I paid out, I took Shelby home, hosed her and put her up. Went home myself and vegged for the rest of the day.

About 7pm, David and I went back out to the barn and fed. I was felling much better so we went to the arena and visited and watched some sorting. I think David kinda likes to watch that as it is a speed thing. I really think he would like the penning as there is so much more speed involved. Maybe next month he will come watch me at the finals. I hope.

This past Sunday, Oct 23, Aunt Joyce and Uncle Wendell came out to the barn and spent about 3 hours. I hooked Summer to her cart and took Aunt Joyce for a ride in the pasture. She said she could see how you could get lost in thought in that beautiful place. Just you and your horse.

We got back to the barnyard and I gave a ride to Uncle Wendell and our new boarder, Al. They really enjoyed themselves. And Summer was on very good behavior.

After that, I saddled Summer and let Aunt Joyce play on her a bit and gave her a mini riding lesson.

When they left, I took Summer back out to the pasture and just enjoyed a leisurely ride.

That evening, Tracey came out and I had Shelby saddled. I asked her if she wanted to join me in the pasture since it had been months since she has been out there. Shelby was awesome, of course, but I am a bit biased. : )

What a wonderful month October has been. Thank you Lord!

And thank you for reading. Much love and blessings upon you.

Friday, September 30, 2011

September 2011 SWTPA

This was a good day for Shelby and I. Once again, I tried out what penning skills I may or may not have and I was very happy with the end results.

I knew I was going to do one run in the 6 penning, which is for novices only. However, right before the 10 pen was to start, they needed 3 novice folks to round out the class. (the 10 class is for Pro/Am and novice) They asked me a couple of times and I said no. This class is for much better riders/competitors than I. Well, they kept calling out that they needed 1 more novice rider. I looked at Anthony and said I just wasn't good enough for that class. He then told me I was and I should do it. So I did. I drew up with 2 guys and then learned that one of them was well known across the states as one of the best penners there is. WOW! Now I was nervous! I told Anthony who I drew up with and he told me how to ride with him. DK also gave me some etiquette advice on how to act when running with folks of this caliber. That way, they learn to respect you as someone trying to learn if you respect their talents/abilities. I was totally okay with all the advice I was getting. So when it was our turn, I told them that this was only my second time and said what DK told me to say. Both guys were very nice and very helpful. Mr. Lesh then told me how he wanted me on the flank of his horse and how he wanted me to work and it was spot on what Anthony had already told me. Well, we got all 3 head on our first go! It was wicked awesome!!! There were like 25 teams in this class. On our second go we only got 1, but that is okay, I still had a blast. I think we got like 5th place. So I ain't complaining!

In the 6 penning, I drew up with Jason, who boards his horses at James' and we have sorted together before, so I knew he was a strong rider. And I drew with Sid again, just like last month. There were 18 teams in this class. We knew to qualify for the short go we needed 2 head, so that is what we did. On the short go we got 1 head and 3rd place. Once again, not complaining! I can't believe that I have only penned 3 times ever and have placed all 3 times. I am starting to think that maybe penning is my true calling and not sorting.

I sorted 5 times and did not have one short go. Not all the busts were my fault, but I'm just not doing very well right now in sorting. Robin used to talk about that "wall" you run into, I think I am not only running into it, but slamming into it head on! LOL

I am not giving up on sorting, but maybe I need to take a step back, re-group and quit over thinking it. I really do think that I am way over thinking it.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Summer's weekend to shine!

Well, this past weekend, it was all about Summer. She got back to her roots as a safety horse for the R4 NATRC Benefit ride. Besides being in season, so a bit spooky on trail, she was awesome!

Friday evening, Ronald and I made plans that he would ride Open on Saturday and I would ride Novice/CP and then Sunday we would switch. Saturday I rode with Annette Thurlow and Kristen Fisher, and Ronald rode with Donna DeYoung. Donna is an endurance rider so rode Open on both days. On Sunday, Ronald rode Novice/CP with Patsy Davis.

So I guess what I am saying is, as Safety Chair for this ride, I had a real good and capable group of safety riders.

Right out of camp on Saturday, Summer and I went after a loose horse. Once the horse ran past us, off we went. No, we do not chase, simple watch where the horse goes then try to quietly go to it to catch it. The horse stopped shortly after passing us, Summer approached it and the horse let me unlatch one side of it's reins and pony it back to the rider. That was our only excitement for the weekend, so it was a good weekend.

After a mile or so out of camp, a rider was dismounted and asked if I would hold her stirrup so she could re-mount. I dismounted Summer and told her to stand. As I walked away, Summer lowered her head to take a bite of grass. I made my "no-no" noise and her head popped back up and she just stood there while I helped the rider mount her horse. Kristen told me later she and Annette were impressed with Summer's actions while I did this. I am so happy I taught her to ground tie.

Due to no one getting hurt or not having to go after a lost rider, it felt like a pleasure/conditioning ride. Summer had to do more moving out than usual on Sunday. Since I have taught her to trot under saddle, I bet we trotted almost 10 miles on Sunday. And stupid me forgot to raise my stirrups so she ended up with a sore left loin. I must raise those things one more notch.

Okay, now why did I teach my gaited horse to trot? Because it is good for strengthening the muscles in their backs, plus it makes me exercise my legs muscles while posting. Cause there is no way to sit a TWH's trot. It is like a jack hammer. But she does know the difference in what I am asking her. We did do some racking, running walk, step pacing and some cantering on Sunday. So she used just about every muscle she had as well.

Anyway, the trails were beautiful, the weather was gorgeous and getting to visit folks I haven't seen since the Christmas ride was awesome. That is why I love riding safety, I get to ride my horse and visit with friends, but there is no pressure of the competition.

What a great weekend!

TTFN and thanks for reading!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

August 2011 SWTPA / NATRC

What a great show!

I FINALLY worked up the nerve to team pen. And it was AWESOME! I loved it! I love the speed of it and the action of it.

I had been wanting to try for sometime now, but just never worked up the nerve to throw my name in the draw. Well, I finally just did it. I rode with a man named Syd and Felicia's son, Coy. It was so fun! There were 14 teams and we got third place. No money as it only paid first and second, but I earned another 8 points for year end. Won't matter much tho as I only have like 14 points anyway, but now I have 22. LOL

We had 3 head on our first go. Syd and Coy got 2 head and the third one just pealed it's way out of the herd right in front of me. So I started hollering pen, pen, pen. I was the hole person and Syd and Coy were the wing and swing. One of the cows got past Coy and ran back towards the herd. It was too late to do anything so we penned the 2 we had. On our second go, Coy pealed out one good and one trash. I didn't stop the trash so had to haul butt after it down the arena wall. I finally headed it and turned it back and chased the crap out of it. Again, Coy pulled one good and one trash out of the herd. We were running out of time, so brought them both down to the pen. This time Syd was the hole and Coy was the wing and I was the swing. Coy took off after the trash and hollered at me to pen. So I penned our 1 cow and threw my hand in the air as we waited on Coy to push the trash back past the foul line. We finished the a total of 3 head and third place. Yes, I am hooked!

I sorted 3 times in the 3 class. My partners were Vicki, Mike and my draw was Katie, their niece. Mike and I got 3, Vicki and I got 4 and Katie and I busted. No short runs for me this month. But I wasn't distraught about it. The cows were tough and we did the best we could for novices. Even though I had no short goes, I was real happy with our performance. Shelby and I are starting to click. Slow as it may be, we are getting there. I am finally learning to set her back and then turn her when working the hole and we didn't let one cow get past us even though the pressure was on!

The Wednesday prior to the show, I did take a lesson with James and it was a good one. He only corrected me once. My moves were good, Shelby and I are working better as a team all the time, so I am real happy with that. James even commented on how Shelby has really calmed down. He even said again that he knew I would be good for her.

Summer is really coming along and getting fit for our job as Safety Chair for the Benefit NATRC ride in September. It is the weekend of the 10th. We do about 3 good conditioning rides a week and on the weekend we do long slow distance in the pasture with some moving out. Even if we have to hit every trail 3 or 4 times. I may get bored, but it is for her benefit and health.

I bought Hank the Hackney Pony back. Hank has dropped a considerable amount of weight. David was very upset a couple of weeks ago when he saw him. When I was leasing him from Barb, he was being fed twice a day as he is a hard keeper. I wish he was an air fern, but he isn't. When I relinquished my leash on him, Barb only fed him once a day. That wasn't working, and he started loosing weight. Then she was going to sell him. He was in no condition to sell as he needed to gain about 50 pounds. I literally wanted to be sick every time I thought about him leaving. So I talked to her about him and asked how much. She told me. I told her I wanted to buy him out right. So she cut the price in half and starting crying as she was so happy I was buying him. Even David was glad that Hank is back with us. Plus, when we get our own place, Hank will be the third horse I was planning on getting anyway as I wanted a companion horse for when Summer or Shelby had to leave for work.

Chompers has a new home. I have given him to my driving instructor Denise. Her barn isn't ready yet, but should be done in fall, then he will be leaving. I love that little pony, but she will take him somewhere as far as showing. He will be awesome in the show ring and Denise is the one that can take him there! So I am excited as they will be a good match, much like Hank and I.