Olympus Ranch Stables

Monday, November 21, 2016

A Stroll Down Memory Lane.....

I took a picture of Sephy tonight and am shocked at how much she has grown....

Here she is just a few hours old
Here she is at 3 days

Sephy at 3 weeks old

1 month old in this one

I spent her 2nd month in the hospital, but here she 3 months old. HUGE growth spurt!
Here she is at 6 1/2 months. What a chunkers!

I took the next 2 pictures last night. That rail is 5 feet tall!

She is 7 months old, and looks like a pony instead of a young filly.

I hope you enjoyed this little stroll through memory lane! Can you believe how much she has grown?

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Sephy is completly amazing!

So, for the last few weeks, I have been able to work with Sephy for about 15 minutes most every night. She is now reliably halter broke! She will stand still while put her halter on and take it off. She backs and side steps with a touch of my fingers and a soft "cluck" AND most importantly she is leading fairly well. All of this is still being done in the safety of the stall, not outside yet.

We had a vet appointment last week and Sephy was a complete rock star! She stood with her hind end in the corner quietly and respectfully for her 3, count them, 3 shots. When the vet first laid eyes on her, she was amazed at how much Sephy has grown! In all honesty, Sephy is nearly 14hh and is built like a pony. She does not look like a 7 month old filly at all. I will take the camera to the barn this afternoon and get some new pictures of her. Aspen also got her shots and her teeth floated. Sephy was very calm and just chilled out with me on the other side of the stall while Aspen got her teeth done. I was really pleased with how well behaved Sephy was during the entire ordeal. Next month is a second round of shots (for Sephy) and a teeth check for Varro. I hope by then that Sephy will know how to tie.

When I fed this morning, I took a few minutes to play with Sephy. I need to get her ready for her first farrier appointment. So far, I can get her to lift her front hooves. I have not tried cleaning them yet, nor have I tried lifting the backs. She is brilliant and if I spend 15 or 20 minutes a night with her, I am confident she will be a good girl. One big plus is that she really likes people and loves attention, scratches and loves. She is not quite as food driven as Aspen, but she looks as if she has never ever missed a meal (haha). I am quite happy with this sweet girl!

In other news, I have a follow up appointment with my surgeon next month and am hoping to be able to start doing ground work/round penning in January! Please cross your fingers! If all goes well, Sephy will be learning to round pen for her New Year Resolution!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Lots of Updates!

First of all, my back is doing so well. I am now swimming twice a week and going to physical therapy once a week. I am hoping I will be able to ride by Spring/Summer. Now, on to the good stuff!

My barn in finished! My husband, mother-in-law and brother-in-law worked their tails off in order to finish the stalls by the "rainy season." We finished it last night and the horses were so happy to get out the mud and the muck for the night. They will be in for the next few days as there are more rain storms scheduled to hit us. I also need to let their turn outs dry up some before they go back out!

Here are some pictures of my babies spending their first night in the new stalls!

 Next on the agenda is to start working with Sephy! She is quite the handful! Time for halter breaking, tying and picking up hooves for the farrier. She is going to be very unhappy for a few weeks until she learns better manners! Time to put up a round pen!

Friday, September 16, 2016

One Step Closer to Normal

I had a great follow-up appointment with my spine surgeon today. My X-Rays look great the bone has formed around the “cage” and is healing right on track. I got a chance to chat with the Dr. about the dos and don’ts of activity. Here are some of the things I am able to do now:

• Lead the horses from point A to point B
• Feed the horses
• “Light” ground work, but not with the baby yet as she is still a bit too rambunctious
• Gradually lift up to 40-50 pounds
• Walking on a treadmill as long as I like (no time restrictions) but I am to only walk at this point: NO running or jogging
• Last but not least, I can start taking Alieve/Motrin instead of only Tylenol.

Tonight was business as usual, but I plan to feed by myself in the morning! I am so excited to be able to get to do chores again! I am also looking forward to putting up the round pen and working Varro! He is so bored and will love to get out and stretch his legs! My next appointment is in December and we will address jogging/running and riding. In the meantime, I will be round penning Varro and Aspen. I might be working with Sephy a little, but Hubby will be doing most of the work with her.

Work on the barn is really progressing. Hubby has been working feverishly and we are almost ready to cut some concrete out. He has made several dump runs and at least 1 or 2 more to go. It is really looking gorgeous. The first time I saw this barn, it was difficult to imagine how wonderful it could look, but now, I can really see the vision. Pictures to follow tomorrow!  

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

The Real PT

Today was my first "real" day of PT. I used this sitting elliptical thing for 10 minutes and then the stretching and exercises began. I am quite sore and very weak. There are a set of 3 exercises I can do and 2 stretches. I am really going to feel it in the morning. I was surprised at how mobile my lower back actually is. I was arching my back and rounding my back as part of the stretches. It was uncomfortable, but did not HURT. I have tomorrow "off" and have another session on Thursday. I am allowed to walk on the treadmill up to 10 minutes and then do my exercises and stretches on my off days. Here we go!

I have a follow up appointment with Dr. Halpin (the surgeon) on Friday. I am hoping he will let me start working some with the horses. I would like to at least be able to lift the buckets of feed, lead them to and from the barn and perhaps even do some groundwork. We shall see. My Hubby will want a written note from the Dr. if I am allowed to do anything!!! Someone has to rein me in!

In other news, Sephy is still a spoiled brat! She loves to be pet and scratched but has no concept of manners. She is in for a rude awakening once I am cleared to do some ground work! HAHA She is growing like a weed. I will be sure to get some pictures tomorrow. She is getting thick AND tall! I love her so much! Varro is super bored and really wants to work. I am "playing" with the idea of doing some endurance riding with him next year, depending on how well I heal. We shall see!

Friday, September 9, 2016

First Day of PT

PT has a whole new meaning for me now. For the last 20 plus years of my life PT meant "Physical Training" now it means "Physical Therapy." I had my first PT session today and it was quite interesting. The majority of the session was testing what my range of motion was, where my muscle weaknesses are, etc. I have a lot of work to do to regain my strength, flexibility and stamina. For the next week, I can walk on the treadmill for 5 minutes and do a set of stretches following my walk. I am to do those stretches "several" times a day for 30-60 seconds on each leg.

The VA authorized 12 PT visits so we must make the most of them. For the first 3 weeks, I am seeing the therapist 2ce per week then we will move to once weekly and I will take on more responsibility at home. I have another follow up appointment with Dr. Halpin next week. He will take more X-rays to make sure I am still healing on schedule.

I am getting stronger each day. I did feed the horses tonight but that was it. Tomorrow we have a farrier appointment so I will try to take some pictures of Sephy then.

My awesome husband has been working tirelessly on the barn and today he finished the electrical work. It looks wonderful! Each stall has an electrical outlet above it so we can install a fan above it during the summer! I am so pleased with how much is getting done and how nice everything is looking. He is really putting a lot of time and effort into my dream! I think it is safe to say that within the next month or so, it will be finished and my ponies will have a dry place to spend the winter! Life is good!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Finallly staring physical therapy!

It has been almost 3 months since my surgery and I am doing quite well. I am able to go out and help feed the horses and chickens. I still cannot lift the feed buckets as they are too heavy, but I am able to toss flakes of hay out to the ponies and fill the waters.

Sephy has grown so much (I will get some updated pictures soon) and is quite the spoiled brat! I can't wait to be able to start doing some ground work with her. She still does not tie or lead, but that will change soon! We (and by "we" I mean my awesome hubby) have been working on the barn the past few weeks, getting it ready for the horses before the winter rains hit. If you recall from my earlier post, the barn was in horrible shape. The rafters were very low, about 7 feet. The entire barn floor is concrete, and some of it is in rough shape. The entire back wall of the barn was open and a cattle feeder was installed. We have removed the feeder and have framed in that open space. The rafters have been raised to over 8.5 feet tall and the half-wall/railing thing has been removed! We are really moving along! We are almost ready to cut the concrete! Here are a few pictures of the progress we have made so far:

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Follow up

I had my follow up appointment with my surgeon yesterday and got some great news! I am healing very well. I got to see my X-Rays and was surprised to see just how much hardware I have in my back. I not only have the 4 screws and 2 rods on the back of my spine but I also have 3 screws on the front as well! I will have an adventure every time I go through airport security LOL I can start weaning myself off my back brace. I still need to wear it when I drive or when I am walking on uneven ground or when I am walking long distances. (I am not sure what "long distances" are but I am sure it is farther than the car to the house!) I am also going to be starting physical therapy. I am just thrilled to be on the mend so fast!

Now for the "Don't List." I am not to work with the horses yet, no ground work and no leading them around. I can't lift the full feed buckets yet either, but I can start to work up to it.... slowly. I am not to push myself too hard. (One of the main reasons I have been referred to physical therapy)

In other news, my hubby has fixed our brush-hog and has been mowing down the big pasture. It looks so amazing! Now that the grass is cut, I can get an idea of where I want to place the arena and round pen. The terrain is really uneven out there, much more so than I had thought, long grass really covers up a lot...

Varro is getting bored and really wants to work. Aspen is a wonderful mother, however, she does not discipline Sephy at all. She lets that filly run all over her! Sephy has gotten spoiled and quite pushy. She still loves people and runs up to the fence line whenever she sees people and loves to be scratched and pet! I have my work cut out for me when I get cleared to start ground work with the horses!

All is well, and getting better!

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Back on Track (So to Speak)

I thought I would give an update on my back surgery saga. This has been a solid week of gains! I have not been using my walker and have made it out to "help" do evening chores every night. My particular contribution is taking care of the chickens. I love my girls. I have been feeding them, tossing out some scratch every night and gathering the eggs. It may not sound like much but it means the world to me to be getting back into the swing of things!

Wednesday is our farrier appointment. It will be Sephy's first experience... I am a nervous wreck. While I did A LOT of work with her before my surgery, NOTHING has been done with her since. I have not taught her to lead or tie yet either... We shall see how this goes. Standby for a post about the potential miracle/disaster.

This weekend I will be moving the majority of my tack from my trailer to my "tack room" in the house. YES! I have a tack room in my house! OK well, it is actually a closet in my music room but it is amazing! I want to be able to have my tack in a climate controlled area since I am not riding. I will be spending next weekend cleaning and conditioning all of my tack since it will just be sitting in the closet for the next year. Oh Joy...

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Long Road Back

It has been a few months since my last post. We are in our new house and it is so beautiful: so much better than I could have imagined! I love the house, I love the views and I love the property layout. I have not been able to take pictures yet, but as soon as I do, rest assured, I will post them.

I had my back surgery on June 13th. I lost a lot of blood during surgery and had a difficult time coming out of the anesthesia. I was kept in the ICU for a few days until I could at least stand up without feeling like I was about to pass out. After a few days in recovery (about a week overall) I got to go home.

My back already feels so much better, even taking in to account the pain of the surgery and surgical sites. HOWEVER, I have had some complications. I had blood clots all up and down my left leg that manifested about 2 weeks after surgery. My husband rushed me back to the hospital and I found myself back in the ICU for several days. I have been back home for about a week and a half and am finally starting to feel better. It will be a long road to recovery.

Aspen and Sephy love their new turnout and are happy. Varro on the other hand has lost some weight and I think he misses working. I am looking forward to a few months down the road when I will be able to at least round pen the horses. Sephy is super duper cute and she knows it! Aspen is a wonderful mother, however, she does not discipline Sephy at all. Sephy is pushy and will benefit from learning about round penning! All in good time....

Monday, May 23, 2016

In the Home Stretch

We are so close to being done with our home buying process! We are signing the closing documents tomorrow! We close Wednesday! This is about to be OURS!!!!

Just look at this view from our back deck.

We plan to move in over Memorial Day Weekend and are hoping to get it all done in 3 days. I know that is a very lofty goal, but I think we will be able to get the big, major, heavy things moved. We will have a few weeks to get the rest of the little things and do a proper "field day" of the house we are in now. (A field day is cleaning everything from top to bottom) The new renters will be moving in soon after we move out and we want to make sure this place is super nice for them. We met them by the way, and they are SUPER NICE!

Now to the part you are all waiting for: The Sephy update!

Sephy is growing like a weed and is so friendly! She loves attention and tonight, she picked up all four hooves for me! She is such a smart, willing and happy filly! I just love her to death! Here are a few examples of how much she loves attention! Every time I try to take some pictures she runs up for her "loves"

The only time I can get a picture of her is when she is eating. She has such a nice build!

She has started to shed out and it looks like she is going to be a lovely dark gold. She is the pot of gold and the end of my rainbow!

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Almost 6 Weeks Old!

I have been having so much fun with Persphone. She is so smart, curious and oh so friendly! I have been having a little trouble taking pictures of her since whenever I head out to the turnout to try, she is always following me around asking for pets and scratches!

Tonight I went out and tried to "hide" and take a few pictures of her. She figured it out pretty quickly and ran across the turnout as soon as she found me! Silly girl!

After I spend some time trying to take pictures, I usually spend some time "training" her. She thinks it is fun and hasn't caught on that I am teaching her things. So far she has learned to move both her fore and hindquarters when I tap on her and "cluck." She also gives her head to pressure. When I gently tug on the sides of her halter, she will tip her head in that direction. I am working on her backing away with just a cluck and a light tap, but she hasn't gotten it yet.

I have found out that she loves, Loves, LOVES to eat! The only time I can take her picture is when she is eating! Case in point:

I am so lucky! I rolled the breeding dice and hit the total jackpot with this filly! I can't wait to see how she sheds out! Oh! By the way! She has really pretty greenish/hazel eyes!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Finally Got a Horsey Day!

I was home sick yesterday, my back was seriously out and today was not much better. At least I could walk today. My back is still killing me and my emotional state is somewhat unstable... and by that I mean it has been a YEAR since I have been in the saddle. I really need some horse therapy, so when I got home from work I was bound and determined to get some horse time in!

First up was Varro. I haltered him up and headed for the round pen. He almost lead ME to the round pen! He was ready to go to work. I asked him to canter in each direction a few times and he had a great time. He was so full of himself and was snorting and blowing, really putting on a show! Since it has been so long since either one of us did any exercise, he was nice and sweaty after about 15 minutes. I walked him back to his stall and let him hand graze on the way. I love this boy!

Aspen was next on the roster. She got a bit worked up when I took Varro away to the round pen. (Ugh here comes the buddy sour mare again.) So I gave her a good grooming and then rinsed her off. Sephy just stood there so she got spritzed as well.

After Sephy figured out she was all wet, she decided to run around and get her wiggles out, until she figured out I was standing there and she came over for some scratches...

Sephy's personality is really beginning to shine. She is so friendly and loves to be around people. Tonight I started working on her legs. I rubbed all four legs down past her knees/hocks (I couldn't bend over farther due to my stupid back) and she just stood there and let me do it. She is smart, calm and really wants to be around people! She is going to be so much fun. I took these pictures tonight. I am amazed at how muscular and mature she is at only 5 weeks old!!!

Sunday, May 1, 2016

1 Month Birthday

Persephone turns 1 month old today. She has really blossomed and is very people oriented. I tried to get some cute pictures of her but she kept following me around!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Play time is over (for now)

I have spent nearly every night fawning over Persephone, it was time to get some work done tonight. Varro's stall was in sad shape so I HAD to strip it and put new bedding down. A few weeks ago my AWESOME hubby bought me a dump trailer from TSC (Tractor Supply Company) that hooks up to my riding lawn tractor. I closed the gates and let Varro have full run of the entire turnout area while I stripped his stall. It only took two trips with that awesome trailer! He had fun running around and eating the long grass. I was worried that Aspen would not want him any where near the baby, but my worries came to nothing. She was happy to see him and had no trouble letting him near the fence line! SO that means they can share a fence line at the new house when we move!

It was dark by the time I got done with all of my chores and I have school tomorrow night so, I will try to take new pictures on Thursday! She will be a month old on Friday! OK well, technically four weeks but whatever!

I am going to close this short post with a comparison between her 4 hour old picture and one I took a couple of nights ago:

She is growing SO fast!

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Having fun with the Baby!

Sephy is so much fun! I have been watching her grow and mature so quickly for 3 short weeks since she was foaled. She has grown so much! She outgrew her foal halter and is now in a weaning sized halter. She loves to get groomed. Since she is going to be such a big girl, I thought I had better teach her to respect the human space and to politely ask for scratches. I have taught her to side pass towards me and stop when I touch her hip.

She is such a special girl! I am so lucky to get such spectacular filly!

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Smart as a whip!

Persephone turns 3 weeks old tomorrow and I have been spending a lot of time with her. Tonight she decided she loves to be brushed so I had to teach her how to ask nicely. She will side step towards me until I touch her hip so that I can brush her. I love this girl so much! Here is a quick video of her asking to be brushed: (Look past my beached-whale self, once I have my surgery and can start jogging again I will slim back down LOL)

My wonderful husband took some pictures of me and her to show how much she has grown in the last 3 weeks. She is very tall. I am 5'7" and am not a wee thing. I think she will mature to about 16.2-17 hh. Enjoy the pictures!