Monday, October 31, 2011

We'd rather dress up for Christmas than Halloween

It's been a tradition to get our barn Christmas pictures done early.  Coordinating schedules is always tricky so we are proud to say, we've gotten 2/3 of our shots done.  Noah is still left to do but that's a whole other story. I haven't quite figured out how I'll dress up Kate this year but I knew  I wanted some pretty sleigh bells for the boys.  I actually planned ahead and found a place that sent me the most perfect ones.  This is so not like me but...old age and everything I guess.  Sleigh bells were purchased and I do believe Sammy likes the jingle jangle.  He likes that noise a whole lot better than the sound of workers pressure washing the roof of the barn...but that is also another story.

We scouted out the trails and pastures and found a tree that would work for our planned decorations.  Sarah just knew we needed popcorn and cranberry strands in hope that the deer could then enjoy them. We use carrots and apples for the ornaments and gave up on any kind of edible tinsel.

Then end result:

Sammy was just not in the mood. I think he would rather of dressed up for Halloween and gone trick or treating.  Or maybe he feels like the rest of us....every year, the Christmas stuff just gets pulled out earlier and earlier. Or maybe he is just at that age where playing dress up is embarrassing. He is pretty good about letting you know how he feels about something.

But he came around once he figured out that the decorations were edible this year.

So of course he had to try to eat everything.  Or maybe he was just trying to straighten the bow. 

Yep, I'm sure that was it.  He was just trying to straighten it.  I'll keep his final picture a surprise.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Six Months Ago

Six months ago Anne Kenan was down for a long weekend. Allison had somehow managed to break her little toe and actually needed surgery to pin it back together.  Evidently little toes are not supposed to be at a right angle to the rest of your foot. Who does that?  And of course, she did this the very week Anne was coming and had booked her flight.  We were very lucky Keith was open to the idea of coming and riding Sammy with Anne. It was great seeing them work together to further Sammy's education.  On the last day she was here, they did this:

And then they did this:

He hasn't been jumped a lot since then but we do think he likes it, especially if I happen to be standing at the end of the line.

And now Anne will be back  down on Friday for another wonderful weekend.  We are so thankful we will not have the weather we had last weekend with non-stop rain and high winds. Allison and Keith will share some Sammy time.  I can't wait to see what they learn..  I'll be there with cameras in hand.

And I think Sammy says he's ready. 

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A Year and a Half Later

Wow - Time has flown by and I have no idea how that happened.  I will try to keep this updated more regularly.  Sammy has really started to grow up with thanks to Team Sammy (Allison, Anne and Keith). Anne will be back down in a little over a week and it's been fun to see how far we have come.

This is Sammy now.

I can't believe he's 4 & 1/2  (do I really have to call him a rising 5 year old?).  Someone needs to come pick me up off the floor please. 

When we first started this backing process, this is what he looked like:

And does everyone remember this?

I look back at our first videos and see such progress. It is so hard to see it on a daily basis so I'm glad I have so many photos and videos to refer back to.  He has developed both in mind and muscle. Keith has done such a great job in both respects and Anne has been so instrumental in providing guidance and encouragement all along the way.  We are very fortunate to have such caring professionals in Sammy's life. I love the connection that Allison and Sammy are developing. They are really beginning to form a lasting partnership.

Here is what Sammy and Allison looked like last weekend.

And they do know how to canter:

Last weekend was such a nice weekend.  The weather is beginning to feel like there is a hope that fall is coming.  Allison took the opportunity to ride Sammy out in a field.  He has been turned out there but never actually been asked to work out there before.  It sure made for a great photo opportunity.

And of course there is video for that also.

I feel like he is really getting a solid foundation and now I can't wait to see what the next year brings.