Friday, April 20, 2012

What a Day

Today started off normal enough -- we did the morning chores before breakfast and then discussed plans for the rest of the day.  I planned to move some more tomato seedlings into real pots in the greenhouse, make some sourdough bread, and go to the grocery store -- before the saddle fitter arrived to look at Winston's saddle in the late afternoon.  Brett thought about cleaning the barn and doing some weed whacking. 

I started the bread rising from the starter I got going last night and played in the greenhouse for a bit.  Not too long because highs approached 90 today so it was HOT in there.  After my online French lesson, I grabbed my wallet to head to the grocery store... and noticed that my debit card had gone missing.  Instantly panic set in as I sat with sweat beading on my forehead trying to retrace my steps.  I called the restaurant where Camille and I had dinner Wednesday and, thank God, they had it.  So, Brett and I drove to Yorba Linda to get my card and then came back home -- three and a half hours round trip.  In the meantime, my sourdough had been rising and rising and rising.  

When we got home, I quickly formed my loaves and headed to the barn to groom Winston before the saddle fitter arrived.  The horses were all hanging out, trying to stay cool. 

Jackson was taking a nap.

Flash and Kalvin were hogging the shade.  Winston was hanging with them.

Of course, as soon as they saw me they had to come over and say hi.

The saddle fitter arrived as I was putting on Winston's halter.  He started doing the nervous dance when she walked up to him with her wither measuring tool so she spent some time making friends and then he was fine.  My dressage saddle, that I bought for Jackson, is too wide in the shoulders for narrow baby Winston.  She had to adjust the tree quite a bit.  She left a bit of room to allow for him to fill out, which we know he will do.  In the meantime, I will use a shim in my Mattes pad to make it perfect. 

While she worked on the saddle, Winston grazed on the slope.

Jackson found some shade down by the water trough/pond.
When she finished working on the saddle, she had me ride in it and it was amazing.  I was able to post lightly instead of clunking down and it felt so balanced.  I rode for maybe 10 minutes so she could watch the saddle at walk, trot and canter.  I was drenched when we finished.  I am not a fan of riding in hot weather. 

I asked her to look at my Western saddle as well and it has the same problem.  I've ordered the Western equivalent of a Mattes pad (its a Thinline Western pad liner with shim pockets) but until it arrives, I will stick with the dressage saddle for trail rides.

My loaves had been rising close to three hours at this point.  I ran up to the house to get them in oven and harvested some beets that were going bananas in the garden.  My rhubarb is ready to be harvested too.  Maybe I can fit in a pie this weekend.

Amazingly, the bread was still okay.  Thank goodness sourdough is slow to rise and bread, in general, is forgiving.  We had bread, cheese, and a salad of beets, oranges and goat cheese for dinner.  Get a load of these beet greens:

And then -- the wierdest, worst part of the day.  I got a call from our trainer, Gayle.  We were scheduled to go out there for a lesson next Wednesday and she called to tell me that the barn owner doesn't want us to trailer in anymore.  I was speechless.  We pay the haul-in fee ($40) and Brett rakes up every last piece of manure and loose hay before we leave.  We observe all the rules.  We never complain.  I was shocked.  I have never been uninvited to a barn before.  Poor Gayle was embarrassed and unhappy about delivering the news.  She still wants to work with us and we are going to try having her come up here once a month.  It's a long way for her to drive so it will be time and money for her (and I told her I would pay her whatever she thinks that is worth).  I'm just ....  I can't even think of the words to express my surprise, shock, disbelief and hurt. 


  1. Oh,that is just so selfish,about the barn owner..I mean. Don't get yourself so upset..people...oh,I could just scream for your part! Love those greens and glad your bread liked all the rising...I wish I could get my backside in gear to get a sourdough starter going from scratch just once...How do you make yours?

  2. That's downright nasty. Don't let it get you down - your trainer sounds great and things will work out.

  3. so sorry about the trailering thing! that's really unfortunate, especially because i cannot imagine you two not being extremely conscientious and careful.

    glad you got the saddles temporarily fitted to work while winston fills in. :)

    now, pass me a slice (or two) of sourdough, please!

  4. I'm impressed that you have beets already. Yum. And the rhubarb! Your pie is going to make me very jealous...ours won't be ready for awhile.

    I use shims in my Mattes pad as my old girl has that low back...they work great.

    As for the stable manager, I can't imagine her saying you can't go there for personal reasons. Maybe they don't want anyone trucking in. If you lived near here, you would be invited to use our indoor whenever!

    It's raining here today and we might actually get some wet snow in the near future. Yesterday it was 80!

  5. Wish I could have some of that fresh bread!

    Try not to take the trailering-in thing personally. I am not defending it, but I have worked at a barn that changed management and starting making up all sorts of rules. No trailering-in and no outside trainers were some of the first "new policies". There were many more to follow. The transition was very unpleasant and at times, down right nasty. Sometimes things just go bad.

    I am sure that it is not about you, but it still stinks. I hope you are able to work with your trainer at home.

  6. What??? Is this a ploy to try to get you to board there? Or are they starting a "no haul-ins" policy for all? I do not miss barn drama one bit.

  7. It sounded like a wonderful day until the end. That's some really bad news for you and I hope you can work it out with Gayle coming to your place instead.


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