SNOBENSON1's SparkPeople Blog SNOBENSON1's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Accountability It has been a very stressful August, September, October and now November. I don't see any end in sight, but that is just part of life. Unfortunately, I have not been sticking to my healthy lifestyle and have gained back 5 pounds that I had lost. This is not acceptable. I WILL NOT be a slave to my emotions and emotional eating. I WILL regain control over myself and my eating. My situation WILL NOT dictate my snacking and exercise habits. I AM retaking control of my life as of today and ... Tue, 8 Nov 2011 08:12:04 EST What Happened To August?!?! I just discovered I haven't blogged since July. It has been a crazy busy time the last few weeks and I have barely signed in and logged my food. <BR> <BR> We got my parents moved and my sister and I have been working on their old house to get it empty of the stuff they didn't want (or need) to take with them. You have never seen so much stuff in your life. I live 140 miles from their old place and my sister and I both work full time so we've been clearing out the stuff on the weekends. ... Sun, 11 Sep 2011 19:24:22 EST Clutter! My parents are moving but I seem to have more clutter every time I come home from their house. It seems I keep finding things they want to get rid of that I can't seem to live without. What is up with that?!?! <BR> <BR> Seriously, they have so much stuff and my sister and I are helping them pack as much as we can. Mom is getting rid of more than I thought she would, YEA, MOM! I will be glad when this move is done. Sun, 24 Jul 2011 19:15:15 EST Moving My parents are moving 150 miles south to be closer to their brothers and sisters. Of eight children between their two families, they are the only ones who moved away from where they grew up. My father is in poor health and my mother is exhausted trying to care for him. My sister and I had a talk with them and suggested it was time to get help. We thought they either needed to move closer to me so I could help, but they know no one in this area and we are so remote the closest hospital is ... Sat, 23 Jul 2011 06:49:12 EST 1 Year, 1 Month and 11 Days 407 days. That's how long I went between coming off of a horse. And ironically, the last two times I have it's been on my rock solid Thomas. Of course, a year ago it wasn't his fault because he slipped and fell and I just happened to be riding him at the time. I managed to get a third degree separation of my shoulder that time. Yesterday wasn't really his fault either. He tried to tell me that he didn't want to go down toward the trees, but I pushed him on. Then when the scary animal d... Tue, 12 Jul 2011 06:27:01 EST So Proud Of My Boy When I first bought Gunner he was young and green and spooky. In fact, in the first year that I owned him I came off that horse 5 times and only once because he bucked me off. The other 4 times were because he spooked and jumped sideways about 5 feet and I forgot to go with him. Once he spooked at the dried up shell of an armadillo. He was convinced the thing was going to jump up and kill him so he spooked sideways and I found myself on the ground. It got to whenever I got on him I could... Sat, 2 Jul 2011 18:06:09 EST There May Be Rioting I am addicted to coffee. It's not a good thing but it is true. If I don't get my coffee in the mornings I get a migraine-like headache that almost puts me down. I know I should cut back on the amount of coffee I drink, but I really enjoy coffee. I drink three liquids: water, one glass of milk each morning and coffee. I just can't give up my coffee. I've tried and succeeded for a few weeks, but I always go back. <BR> <BR> This morning I got up, shuffled my way to the coffee pot (which... Sun, 26 Jun 2011 10:24:32 EST It Doesn't Get Any Better Than This I had to work yesterday morning and it was busy until we closed, which is good because it makes the time go fast. Got off work at 1pm and went home, ate a quick lunch then went out to spend some times with the boys. The weather was much milder yesterday. It had rained a bit in the night and the temperature only got up to about 85 which feels absolutely chilly after a week of over 90 every day. Gunner and I saddled up and after a stubborn start, he decided to partner up and we had a very n... Sun, 12 Jun 2011 08:51:40 EST It's Boiling Humidity! After a winter with 20 inches of snow I promised myself I wouldn't complain about the heat this summer. So I'm not complaining, I'm just reporting. It has been 90 or above for the last 3 days and that qualifies as VERY WARM, or as my friend Susan would say, "It's boiling humidity!" I really like to ride in the early morning during the summer before the horses think they might melt if I put a saddle on them and I'm not sure they are wrong. Saturday that worked out quite well, but Saturday ... Mon, 6 Jun 2011 07:00:42 EST Early Morning Ride I got up early this morning and was riding Gunner at 7:30. We had a lovely ride and he is getting so much better. We left the playground and went out to the big field. Rode the perimeter to check the electric fence then rode the cloverleaf pattern. He is getting so much nicer at going forward and will trot with little encouragement most times. I was very happy with his progress today. Came in at 9:30 and it was already 88 degrees outside. It might get warm today. <BR> <BR> Drink you... Sat, 4 Jun 2011 11:02:42 EST New Ride Gunner and I had a lovely ride this morning. We rode the clover leaf pattern out in the big field for the first time and he did very well, both to the right and to the left. We even trotted parts of it and he is doing better at starting and maintaining the trot until I ask him to slow down. I just have to ask him to slow down before he does it on his own so it's my idea and not his. But I am very pleased with his progress. <BR> <BR> After Gunner and I were done, I played with Stoney at l... Mon, 30 May 2011 19:02:55 EST And Then There Were Three I had heard that when you get your first horse pretty soon you will have five horses because it is an addiction. Well, we have two more horses to go because Stoney has come to live with us permanently. Stoney is a 11 year old grey Arabian who is a sweetheart. He originally came to us on loan as a babysitter for Thomas when Gunner and I went to horse camp, but his owners have 50+ horses and they were looking for a good home for Stoney. So, Stoney is number three and we love him already. Sun, 29 May 2011 09:16:57 EST Pray for Joplin Joplin, Missouri, an hour away from us, was hit by a devastating tornado last evening. Eighty-nine people are confirmed dead so far, but that number is expected to rise. One of the major hospitals there was badly damaged. Many people have been left homeless. Please keep Joplin in your prayers today. Mon, 23 May 2011 08:16:00 EST Major Progress!! Gunner and I have had a big morning. We saddled at liberty in the round pen and he only had to do laps twice before he stood to saddle. Then we bridled at liberty and he only had to do laps once. Then we went to the playground and his power steering is getting so much better. We trotted laps, then did walk/trot/backup, circled cones (with little rein) side passed over the log, both directions. He was doing so well I decided to ask for a canter. I have NEVER asked that horse for a canter. He t... Sun, 22 May 2011 11:45:48 EST Natural Horsemanship Clinic in June For The Horse Ranch in Fair Play, Missouri is having a three day Natural Horsemanship Clinic June 17 through June 19. The cost is $150 per day and worth every penny. I highly recommend going and will be there. If anyone lives close to Missouri and would like more information let me know. Sun, 22 May 2011 07:48:44 EST Horse Clinic Day 5 Well, we got rained out today so we spent the morning in Tony and Jenny's living room discussing how we felt our week had gone. We were all pleased with the progress we have made with our horses. I was happy not only with Gunner, but the insight I gained about myself and my strengths and weaknesses I have in developing our partnership. I think the most important thing I have learned that I am not being mean when I correct his bad behavior, I am showing him how to get the right answer so th... Fri, 20 May 2011 19:20:44 EST Horse Clinic Day 4 Thursday May 19, 2011 <BR> <BR> It started out with a thunderstorm early this morning and at 8am I wasn’t sure if we were going to have camp or not. At 8:45 the rain had let up enough that Gunner and I packed up and headed to For The Horse Ranch. <BR> <BR> Since the weatherman was calling for storms off and on all day, we planned to not have a schedule and Jenny and Tony would be around for coaching with whatever problems we were having. Gunner and I saddled up and only had to make one ... Fri, 20 May 2011 08:54:19 EST Horse Clinic Day 3 Wednesday May 18, 2011 <BR> <BR> I started out the day determined to be firm without being emotional with Gunner. Jenny and Tony announced that we could use the morning to work on whatever we felt we needed to improve this morning. As others moved to the arena or to the field to work, Gunner and I went to the truck to practice saddling with respect. Every time he would loose interest in what we were doing I would respectfully, but firmly, ask him to be attentive to the task. This was a l... Thu, 19 May 2011 08:02:41 EST Horse Clinic Day 2 Tuesday May 17, 2011 <BR> <BR> This morning started out fair. We saddle up first thing and Gunner wasn’t really ready to be saddled. He kept stepping sideways or forward or backward and stepped on me twice. Evidently I am not assertive enough and am letting him get away with too much. After taking what seemed to be an hour but was probably closer to 15 minutes I had his saddle on. Tony came walking by and I asked if he had seen the trouble I was having. He had and he had some suggestio... Wed, 18 May 2011 07:55:36 EST Horse Clinic Day 1 Monday May 16, 2011 <BR> <BR> Today was the first day of my first week long clinic at For The Horse Ranch. There are eight of us attending the clinic today and the weather is perfect. Tony and Jenny started us out in the arena with our horses online to warm up. This was Gunner’s first clinic since the disaster two years ago before we found out he was proud cut. I was a little anxious about how he would behave in a new place with lots of new horses, and my LBI did have a period of LBE but... Tue, 17 May 2011 07:23:17 EST Goodbye Mr. Stickyfeet! Gunner and I had the most lovely ride tonight. I love summer! We have been able to ride an average of 8 to 10 hours each week for the last 3 weeks because the weather has been so nice. I have always known that what Gunner really needed was hours under saddle, but I am so impressed with how much progress he has made now that I have the time (and weather) to ride more consistently. <BR> <BR> Did I mention I love summer? <BR> <BR> Not only is he going forward when asked, he is trotting ... Sat, 7 May 2011 21:36:51 EST I love warm weather I like being outside and have really had cabin fever this last winter. It's beginning to look like winter is finally gone for a while and we had a beautiful day today. After work I got to spend the afternoon with two of my favorite boys, Gunner and Thomas. Gunner and I had a lovely ride for a couple hours. He is making progress by leaps and bounds (not literally) and has the nicest trot I have ever ridden. Getting him to start forward still takes a little effort, but not nearly as much a... Sat, 30 Apr 2011 18:45:48 EST Important Public Service Announcement This is a public service announcement. <BR> <BR> In a press release today, the National Institute of Health has announced the discovery of a potentially dangerous substance in the hair of horses. This substance, called "amoebacti equuii" has been linked with the following symptoms in females: Reluctance to cook, clean or do housework. Reluctance to wear make-up, good clothes, or dress shores. Reluctance to spend money on home or car repairs until after "baby has new boots, blanket, tack; or... Wed, 20 Apr 2011 06:09:39 EST Lessons Gunner and I went to Jenny's house today for our lesson. Gunner hadn't been away from home since December and I wanted to see how he did in an unfamiliar place. He did better than I expected, but was very distracted by his new surroundings and the other horses there. We did a lot of ground work before I thought he was ready to ride, and even though he was much better than he could have been, he wasn't paying much attention to me and so back off I got and he got to work hard on line. By th... Mon, 18 Apr 2011 19:30:36 EST Progress So my trainer, Jenny, is home from spending the winter in Florida (insert jealousy here) and we had our first lesson last Tuesday. She hadn't seen Gunner since December and I wasn't sure which horse would show up, Mr "Ok I'll Try" or Mr "Sticky Feet". Monday evening when we rode I should have brought a book because we didn't move. I was afraid that horse would also be seen on Tuesday, but when Jenny got here, Mr "AMAZING" showed up. I have never had a nicer ride on that horse. We not onl... Sun, 17 Apr 2011 20:48:45 EST Gunner My horse, Gunner, drives me crazy most days. He doesn't really like to go forward when I am on his back and would rather just stand still. We have been working on it a lot lately and he has been doing better, until today. It took us 45 minutes to walk about 50 steps. In his last "burst of speed" we walked SLOWLY about 20 steps in a row and I called it good. I took him back to his pasture and was refilling the water tank when I took these pictures. <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkp... Mon, 11 Apr 2011 18:24:51 EST Raining Again At least it isn't snowing so I really can't complain. My plan was to come home from work and ride but since the rain nixed that I cleaned house, paid the bills and balanced the checkbook. Not nearly as fun as riding, but it needed to be done. <BR> <BR> Tomorrow is supposed to be nice, in the 60s and sunny, so after church I am definitely going for a ride on Gunner. He is getting better but needs more time under saddle. Tomorrow night is the Big Full Moon and I can't think of anything n... Sat, 19 Mar 2011 19:49:40 EST HorseFest! Yesterday The Farmer and I had a great day at HorseFest. We saw Ken McNabb working with a green horse and we saw his sons, ages 12 and 7, work with an unstarted pony. I have to say I wasn't sure I was going to enjoy watching children play with a pony, but these kids aren't any children. They knew what they were doing and with a little bit of coaching from dad, they did very well. It was kind of like watching my trainer's kids with their horses. Those kids were born on a horse (almost literall... Sat, 12 Mar 2011 06:19:01 EST Thin Mints Are Addictive.....Enough Said <em>39</em> Mon, 7 Mar 2011 14:43:17 EST Tax Time It's that time of year. Time to figure out how much Uncle Sam is going to take from us. I have been working on our farm taxes and am almost done. I did my son's taxes last week. They are easy since he doesn't itemize anything. I went to KC to do my parent's taxes this weekend. Again, they are pretty easy, but they do itemize so it takes a little longer. I'm not sure how I became the tax gal. I started using TurboTax years ago, and did my kids when they were in high school and somehow ... Sun, 6 Mar 2011 21:59:34 EST Riding Lesson Kelly just left after giving Gunner and me a riding lesson. Last night I rode Gunner and" Mr. Sticky Feet" showed up again. Today "Mr. Let's Go" showed up. I like Mr. Let's Go better. <BR> <BR> Kelly showed me some patterns to do with Gunner and commented on how he needs a visual goal to be motivated to move. I knew that. So, we set up orange cones all over the playground and started cone to cone then advanced to start at this cone go around that cone and end up at the third cone. He... Mon, 28 Feb 2011 16:55:52 EST Great Ride Gunner and I got to play yesterday in three of the four Parelli savvies. We started at liberty out in the pasture, with Thomas playing also. Thomas is getting so much better at liberty. He no longer leaves me when I ask for him to move backwards or sideways. I haven't gotten him to play touch it yet, but he has made so much progress and become so much more confident that I am thrilled with his driving game. <BR> <BR> Gunner loves to play touch it and mirror me and I have to think quickly... Sun, 27 Feb 2011 09:13:08 EST On My Own The Farmer has gone to see his brother and sister up north and I am alone for the weekend. Well, sort of alone if you don't count a dog, a cat, 2 horses, 12 chickens and 30+ cattle. I am in charge of the farm while he is away. The Farmer hates to travel and likes to sleep in his own bed and it has been more than two years since he has left me in charge of the place. It has been 21 hours since he left and so far nothing catastrophic has happened. <BR> <BR> But, while the cat's away the ... Sat, 26 Feb 2011 08:08:40 EST RIP Xander Jill and Nick's 1 year old, Xander will be laid to rest today. Please keep them in your prayers as today will be one of the most difficult days of their lives. <BR> <BR> Rest in peace, Xander. Mon, 21 Feb 2011 08:58:31 EST Ah, Spring! It has been lovely week in the Ozarks. Thursday the temperature was over 70! A week before it was -23. That's Missouri for you. If you don't like the weather stick around for an hour or so, it will change. Unfortunately I had to work Thursday and it was one of my long days so I didn't get home until after dark. All my horse friends on Facebook were posting about the lovely rides they had with their horses and I was jealous as a cat. Friday was also a beautiful, if not quite as warm, d... Sat, 19 Feb 2011 07:32:25 EST Please pray for my friends Please pray for my friends, Jill and Nick. Their 1 year old son was killed in an accident at the baby sitter's house yesterday. Keep the babysitter in your prayers, also. I can't imagine what they are all going through. Thu, 17 Feb 2011 08:33:14 EST Slogging Around Well, the temperature got up in the 50s yesterday. The sun was shinning and there was a lovely warm breeze. Much of the 20+ inches of snow we received over the last two weeks went away. In its place we have lots of mud. I will not complain about mud. I will take mud over snow any day of the year, especially when the weather is so nice. Of course we still have piles of snow that The Farmer pushed up with the blade to make a track for us. We may have traces of snow around until June. <... Mon, 14 Feb 2011 07:53:49 EST Busy Day The Farmer and I went to look at a truck yesterday. I have been saving my money for a year to buy a new horse trailer that will carry both horses, my trailer now only holds one horse. When I go anywhere with a horse I have to borrow The Farmer's truck since my Eclipse doesn't pull a trailer very well. Well, after discussing the truck situation, we decided to take the trailer money and buy me a truck to pull a trailer first. I guess I was trying to put the cart before the horse, so to spea... Sun, 13 Feb 2011 08:48:47 EST 50 Degree Heat Wave The temperature is supposed to get into the 50s this weekend. With all the snow we have on the ground it will be a muddy mess but that's what rubber boots are made for. Gunner is getting so bored and I can't wait to get outside and play with him and Thomas. <BR> <BR> I am also hoping that just being able to get outside will help me get past this plateau. I haven't lost any weight for more than a month. I haven't gained any either but I am getting frustrated. My measurements have stayed... Fri, 11 Feb 2011 08:44:29 EST Disappointment I am a lukewarm football fan. When I grew up we had one TV in the house (black and white) and on Sunday afternoons you could watch football with Daddy or find something else to do. My Daddy taught me the basic rules of the game and I learned to root for the KC Chiefs and the SF 49ers (his two favorite teams) and to sort of understand what was going on. Now The Farmer and I watch the Chiefs lose together. I don't really follow any of the teams and couldn't tell you one player's name but I ... Mon, 7 Feb 2011 06:09:14 EST Stuck I haven't lost any weight since the first of December. I realize that I have been cheating more since the holidays, but I figure in my cheating and have stayed within my calorie goals daily, but at the upper end of those goals. I have been using my elliptical at least three times a week and have been doing strength training three to four times a week. I am getting a little frustrated that even though I haven't gained any weight, a haven't lost any either. I am only 8 pounds from my goal w... Sun, 6 Feb 2011 08:44:03 EST Cabin Fever I think I have cabin fever. I have been able to get to work the last two days due to my handsome chauffeur, The Farmer, and his stretch limo, aka the 4WD pickup. But my days have been limited to being inside for 23.5 hrs a day with two quick dashes to care for the horses. I am getting cranky. I need fresh air and play time with my boys. I NEED spring! Sat, 5 Feb 2011 06:34:59 EST Snow Storm of 2011 Well, we are officially snowed in. It started sometime in the night and we had 2 inches by 6am. When I left for the store at 8am, we had 4 inches. It took me 25 minutes to drive 6 miles to work because the roads weren't cleared. I don't think the plow had even been down our highway, though it wouldn't have mattered much because it was snowing so hard that the ruts were filling up in about 30 minutes. The town was pretty much closed. Only one bank in town was open for 1 hour, the grocery... Tue, 1 Feb 2011 18:04:32 EST Good Weekend Saturday morning I drove up to see my parents. As a bonus, my aunt was also visiting them so I got to see her, too. Daddy was having a good day Saturday and Sunday. He still sleeps too much, but wasn't having the horrible headaches he so often has. I had suggested a few weeks ago that maybe he was eating too much aspartame, especially in his diet pop. Aspartame can cause headaches in some people and because of his diabetes he consumes a lot. Mom said that cutting it out of his diet has ... Mon, 31 Jan 2011 06:55:17 EST Hint of Spring Yesterday it got up to nearly 60 degrees here. Of course, I had to work until 5:30, but the days are getting longer and it doesn't get dark until about six so I had nearly 15 minutes of daylight to spend with the horses after I got home. That's not enough time to get saddled and ride, but it is enough time to play at liberty and to enjoy being outside with them. The Farmer has two of the three lights installed that we have planned for the horse area. He is having difficulty with the light... Sat, 29 Jan 2011 06:17:03 EST Made to Crave I just started reading the book, "Made to Crave" by Lyse Terkeurst. I have only finished the 3rd chapter, but so far highly recommend this book. Lyse reminds me that I was created by God to crave Him, not other things such as food. And when I let something become so important in my life that it interferes with my relationship with Him and my service to Him, then it has become an idol to me. How convicting. When I sit in my recliner watching TV and eating chips instead of spending time w... Tue, 25 Jan 2011 06:43:42 EST All In All A Really Good Day. Have you ever had a day that everything seemed to go right and was down right satisfying? I had one of those today. Today was my day off so I got up at 5am. Doesn't everyone? I poured my first cup of coffee (I love coffee) then sat down to listen to Max Lucado on the internet. I really enjoy listening to Max Lucado. He has such a pleasant voice and he can really illustrate a biblical point with stories that make you say, "Oh, I get it now." I have been listening to his sermon series on... Mon, 17 Jan 2011 19:15:12 EST All In All A Really Good Day. Have you ever had a day that everything seemed to go right and was down right satisfying? I had one of those today. Today was my day off so I got up at 5am. Doesn't everyone? I poured my first cup of coffee (I love coffee) then sat down to listen to Max Lucado on the internet. I really enjoy listening to Max Lucado. He has such a pleasant voice and he can really illustrate a biblical point with stories that make you say, "Oh, I get it now." I have been listening to his sermon series on... Mon, 17 Jan 2011 19:15:11 EST The Frozen Turtle I really hate being cold. Since my hysterectomy 6 years ago I live in a continuous hot flash so it has to be really cold for me to be cold. This morning the temperature outside is 19 degrees with a wind chill of about 5. That qualifies as cold. The only time I have with the horses is on the weekend but when it's this cold I really don't want to go outside for 5 minutes, let alone an hour to play and ride. <BR> <BR> Also, since we heat with wood, when the wind blows it is difficult to k... Sun, 9 Jan 2011 11:18:39 EST 2010 Just as 2009 was, 2010 was emotionally challenging. My children and my parents have been my stressors, and my job isn't exactly calming either. But, as I reach the end of 2010 and look back I can honestly say I am hopeful for 2011 to be better in many ways. <BR> <BR> Our daughter still has, and always will have, diabetes. I will always worry that we will someday get another call like the one on June 14, 2009, that she is in a diabetic coma. But we have our daughter back. When the doctors... Fri, 31 Dec 2010 06:02:33 EST