Tuesday, August 19, 2008


The last post was done by our daughter. We got home late yesterday afternoon in the midst of a terrible wind/dust storm.
Reno was an experience of a lifetime but I don't think I will do it again. For a couple of reasons. First of all my age, next was the heartbreak of giving up my special baby, and we just could not afford to do that again. I received a lot of support from a lot of people, money, services and so on but it cost us about $l,000. to go to Reno twice, food, etc.
We arrived Wednesday afternoon and got settled in the 12 x 12 panel stall. I put her kind of in the middle so neither the the morning, nor afternoon sun would be on her. It was hot enough without being in the direct sun. She settled right in and drank a lot of water. We put her banner up and sponsor board up. Thursday, she got her bath. She never did learn to like a bath much. We had our trainers meeting and got the pattern for the obstacle course. My big thing was, I did not trot with her in circles around cones. We did serpentine etc. She would trot to the right with me just fine but to the left she barreled her shoulder into me. A young lady next to us named Jaci took her and worked with her. I certainly appreciated that.
Friday morning we first had the conditioning competition and they painted our number on each hip. #310. I got dinged .5 because she was too heavy. No ribs showing. That amounted to -4 points. I did not know they were judging her on manners and she moved away from the person painting her and got knocked 2 points there. That is 5 points. In the actual obstacle competition, she walked halfway around the 2ND. circle. I could not run fast enough that way. She did the square perfect. She got marked down a little at the trailer because she did not just follow me in but stopped and smelled before she stepped in. And then when I was picking up her feet, on the last foot she was a little off balance and I took it away from me so I picked it up twice. My fault there. She did the rest of the course very well, nicked one pole.
When all the points were tallied, I came in, in the top 10 and 7Th overall. 6.5 points out of first place so you see the competition was fierce. Only the top 5 got to do their freestyle in the big arena.
I cried myself to sleep Friday night because I was so afraid she was not going to be adopted and they told us if they were not adopted they would go back to Palomino Valley Center and I could not stand that. She trusted me. However, she was adopted by a lovely lady from Reno. They picked her up Sat. afternoon. I did well then, she loaded right in their trailer but when she left she looked out the trailer window and whinnied at me like she was concerned why I was not going. I lost it.
Only 4 of the babies did not get adopted and they did not go back to PVC but to the prison program at the Nevada State Prison in Fallon, NV. They will do very well there and help a man get his life in order.
We met some wonderful people, will never forget them nor will I ever forget a young bay filly that gave me my confidence back and pulled me out of a depression that I could not seem to shake since last Jan. Sierra, I will always remember you, will you remember me?

We stopped in Burns on our way home a picked up a 3 strikes filly that is 3 and we have named Rusty. Will post pictures tomorrow.


  1. Congratulations Mom. But I do want you to know I did laugh at the too fat part. You were worried she would be too skinny. I'm sorry she moved away from the painter person. Sounds like it was very fierce competition. Welcome home YOU MADE IT! So whats the next project? :-)

  2. Lea--My heart goes out to you having to part with Siera--but you did her a great service giving her a chance and a start in life that, in these tight economic times, she may have never had. I bet she'll remember you for the rest of her life because I've found horses to have long memories. You did an awesome job!!! I do hope you change your mind and you decide to do it again as long as you can!!!

    Looking forward to pics and stories of your new 3 strikes horse.

  3. Well done Lea,
    She will never forget you. You gave her a good start in life, maybe even saved her life. You did a wonderful thing.
    Congratulations on placing so high. Your a great trainer!

  4. Wow, good job! I can't imagine how hard that would be, watching her go. I'm glad she got adopted though. I can't wait to see pictures of Rusty.

  5. Sounds like you did a great job!

  6. Hi Lea,
    Nice post. I know what you mean about the heartstrings being pulled just a little too hard when comes time to give these babies back. My daughter is 14 and is competing in the Texas competition at the end of this month. She is training 3 yearlings. She has done all of the work herself and has grown very attached to all 3. It will be the hardest thing that she has ever had to do. We are letting her keep or adopt 1 horse, but we can't afford to keep more. We are just hoping that they are adopted to good families. I cry a lot already just knowing that we will be losing them in a couple of weeks and all I do is help my daugther with grooming. I can only imagine what is running through her mind right now. I keep reminding her and myself that what she and others like her have done is nothing short of Amazing. And that without all of you these horses faced an uncertain future. You can visit her blog at kirstinsmustangmakeover.blogspot.com If you have any special tips or suggestions for her upcoming competition, it would be greatly appreciated. Kirstin's mom(Priscilla)