Saturday, August 20, 2011

Riding Horses

While at home, we were able to go out to the "Ranch" (where my Dad has worked my entire life and now where my brothers live and work as well).

Growing up I used to Rodeo and LOVED riding horses. So I am VERY happy that the boys love riding horses too! I must say that Nathan is scared to death about dogs, but put him on a tall horse that is how many times his size, he is fearless!! Too bad we don't live closer otherwise we would go ride more often. I think it is good for him....hmmm we have a cousin that lives close by that has horses....maybe we can come and ride there often....hint hint (KAYLA). Okay so maybe I want to come ride too!

Now prepare yourself for a picture overload....(Picnik wasn't working well enough to put most of them into collages). 
 First we have to get the horses is Nathan brushing Luke and getting him ready. I was teaching the boys what we have to do in order to put the saddle on. (Notice the "no fear" in Nathan).
 Brandon in next to Scooter. Him on the other hand was a little nervous at first....
 But then started to loosen up a little.
 At first I led them down to the outdoor arena and walked them around...
 The boys were really wanting to do it on their own though...
 Nathan thought he had to be very "dramatic" in his commands.....poor Luke. Thank goodness we have 2 of the best horses ever! Growing up they had a lot more spunk and weren't as gentle, but with age they calmed down quite a bit and have more "patience" with children.
 Kimball is riding Scooter and Brandon is riding Luke. I remember when we first got Scooter....he wouldn't even stand on concrete, now is patient enough to let little kids ride him.
 Kimball is still too small and not enough experience to ride Scooter by himself, so Catie is leading them still.
 On the other hand, this is the first time Brandon and Nathan are riding solo! All the other times we have rode, they were always lead and/or I was riding with them.
 I was so proud of them! They were so excited! My Dad was worried so as long as they were riding by themselves, he insisted that one of us was walked by them. Notice Nathan's legs? He was trying to get Scooter to go faster.
 Brandon is riding Luke....
 Nathan on Scooter.....
 Scooter is a rather small horse, he has 1/4 pony in him. So as adults we look too bug for him, but Nathan looks perfect on him.
 Notice Brandon's cowboy hat? Wal-Mart $5 special....but he wanted it to originally be his Indiana Jones hat.

 Nathan was quite shocked at how they could go to the "bathroom" anywhere. But when he had to go pee, he decided that it was "ridiculous" to go outside and he would not do that and rather wait to go inside than outside. I guess I don't have to worry about him going outside all the time.
 Now Luke and Scooter have been together for about 15+ years now. That is in the same pin- so they eat together, sleep and play. They also have this little competition between them....they always like to have the lead and "beat" each other. So as Brandon and Nathan were trying to get them to go faster (faster than a walk) their competitive side kicked in.
 I obviously didn't get pictures of this next part....but as the boys were egging them on....Luke and Scooter took off into a trot that turned into a gallop. Poor Brandon and Nathan were freaked out. I of course was next to them as it began, but hey I can't run as fast as a horse! So I started out sprinting, that turned into a fast run, then a run, then a jog then to a walk once the horses stopped by the gates! Thus makes me happy that we always shut the arena gates when we are in there. As I was running behind them I was yelling (okay gasping) for them to pull back and say "wahooo" (is that how you spell it?) Later when I caught up with them, I asked why they didn't do that and they said it was because they were going too fast! Grandpa was so proud of them for being able to stay on and hang on. I too was very impressed, and what makes me even more impressed is that they still wanted to ride more! (Later of course, I mean they had to calm down first). I guess at the other end of the arena, my Dad started running after us, but Catie keeping her head said that he couldn't catch up that way and to take the truck. So shortly after I caught up with the boys, Dad got there and took Brandon back. I then took Luke and rode him back next to Nathan.
 Now it was time for us "grown-ups" to ride. Catie here on Scooter....see how adults look huge on him?

 This is actually a close up with us on the horses....I must say that I can pull myself up on the horse a whole lot easier than it was a few years ago when I tried after I had Kimball (does this mean I am actually loosing weight again and becoming stronger? Yes I am loosing weight, slowly.)
 Then it was time for the "boys" to practice roping. So Jeff is raking the Arena to make it softer for the steers and the horses.
 We got the steers and everyone is getting ready and the kiddos playing. Boots (the dog) has to be tied up, he is a cattle dog and freaks out when the steers get is actually quite cute to watch.
 The lazy man way now....Charrity uses the four wheeler to originally get the steers and Dad has gotten so old that he drives this little truck around the Ranch to do chores and get places (I am really happy about this, he needs to be off his feet more). But growing up you would either ride the horse getting the cattle or walked.
 Here is Dallie and Wyatt watching (Jeff -my twin and Charrity's little ones)
 Here is Charrity getting Jeff's horse ready. I had to grab a picture of her because believe it or not I don't EVER see her in flip flops and pjs! She did say that she mostly wears this around the house, but still I had to capture the "moment".
 Amber (Joe's wife) is getting his horse ready for him....Morgan and Mason in the corner watching.
 Joe's horse Nemo, I just love his color! And I guess Joe has turned him into a pretty nice horse.
 Amber and Payten, Amber is waiting until after they are done roping, so that she can practice barrel racing. I ended up going around the barrels too, and was pleased to say that Luke still has it and I still do too!
 Nathan ever the baby lover, of course finds here and has to play with her for a minute...

 Me and my Dad! People often ask me where I get my blonde hair from, and this is whom I get it from! When I get older it will just turn white (although my dad is 66 and still has blonde hair, no grey or white hair yet).
 Although while they were roping the kids had a fun time playing with the calf roping chute.
 My brothers like to play too...I am told that they still mess around all the time....hasn't changed from when they were little.
 Joe is trying to rope Jeff. Joe just got a cast off his arm. He almost tore off his thumb roping earlier in the summer. It's doing better now, but he has to figure out roping again.
 Thankfully Joe missed, although it would have been rather funny to see Jeff roped...

 I think he got his workout in today.....Running in sand/dirt isn't easy...
 Brandon was so cute and would watch at the beginning, but then played a little later.
This is my Dad and Jeff team roping. It's where one person (header) ropes the horns of the steer, and turns the steer so the other person (heeler) ropes the back hind legs. All of this is timed, and of course the fastest time wins. 
 Joe is the heeler here and Jeff the header....I really like how Joe is the one that opens the shoot. Although if you really wanted to, someone would stand next to the front of the chute and pulls a lever, but the string here is just easier.

 Dad sits out here to make sure the steer goes straight....
 Now Dad is heading and then Joe is heeling.
 Now Dad is watching and getting ready. Dad heads on Luke (the larger horse) and then heels on Scooter. He was only practicing on Luke today. I have to say if you ever get a chance to watch up close roping, it's fascinating to see the horses, its kinda hard to see now, but look at the horses head and how alert and attentive they are. You can really see how "cowy" the horses can be. When Jeff calf ropes on Scooter or even when we do break-a-way rope on Scooter, if you get close enough to the calf, Scooter will try and nip at the calf. Amazing animals! If I lived closer to home I would take up roping in a heart beat! Great exercise and so much fun!
 (I apologize for the small pictures, but I was a little far away) Here is dad catching the horns - Dad is a very good roper...well I guess doing it for 40+ years will do that for you!
 Now he is pulling the steer sideways so that Jeff can rope his hind legs...
 This is the perfect angle...but hard to heel because you have to time their legs perfectly...if you know your header and your header knows your style it makes it a lot easier on the heeler.
 Jeff making his throw.....

We had such a great time there! I did want to try and go again before we left, but I got drowned in quilting and spent the rest of my time quilting. If anyone has any questions on the terms I used, shoot me an email and I will do my best to explain...although I am the first to admit that I am NO expert!

**No animals were harmed during this at all! Some think that roping is mean to the cattle, but if you do it properly it is not harmful at all!**


Lopez Life said...

Your disclaimer cracks me up! And I can just picture everyone running towards the galloping horses! LOL

Candace said...

I don't see any mountains, is it the Deseret Ranch in Florida?