Wednesday, October 29, 2014

To Tattoo or Not To Tattoo...That is the Question

To Tattoo or Not To Tattoo…That is the question

October 29, 2014

As I was on my way to work one morning last week, I was listening to one of the local radio stations. They were talking about a man who was saying that he had been discriminated against for a job because of his tattoos. I didn’t hear the exact situation that the discussion came from, so I don’t know if this was an editorial piece that was in a newspaper or magazine, or if this was just something that one of the DJ’s had run across and decided to talk about that morning. I do know that some of the comments that he made “rubbed me the wrong way” so-to-speak, and got me to thinking about the whole idea of having or not having tattoos. The DJ made a statement that people who get tattoos do so to set themselves apart from others or to show their individuality. He went on to say that those people shouldn’t be upset when that individuality is recognized and they’re deemed not a team player because of their apparent “individual demonstration” in having the visible tattoos. The DJ also made some comment about how there was no such thing as discrimination against someone for a tattoo. He said discrimination was based on denying someone something based on their race, religion, creed, sex, nationality, etc., not based on a tattoo. After hearing the DJ talk on the radio, I immediately flew into a defensive mode – for myself, for family members, and for many of my friends that have ink and are proud of it.  I wanted to call or email that DJ and give him a big piece of my mind, but decided that would only exacerbate the problem and not offer any help, what so ever. After much thought, I decided that this would be my route of voicing my opinion and open it up for discussion and thoughts from you, the readers.

My Papaw was my first experience with anyone with a tattoo. He served in the military in World War II and while enlisted and abroad, he got his first tattoo. I remember seeing it, tracing my fingers around it, and asking him about it when I was little. His response was always the same, that he thought he’d made a pretty stupid decision in getting it and that he didn’t ever want to see any of us grandkids with one. Papaw has been dead now for a little over 17 years, and unfortunately, I don’t clearly remember the design of the ink in his skin. I do, however, remember that over the years it had faded and some of the lines had blurred a bit, but I always thought that it was interesting and imagined that when he’d gotten it, that it looked very good.

Since then, I’ve met many different people with tattoos. Some had tattoos all over both arms and up the sides of their neck. Some have had dainty butterflies on their ankles, or flowers on their shoulders, or tribal designs on their biceps. I’ve met people that you’d never know had a tattoo. I’ve met people with tattoos who were proud to show off all of their art work – within reason of course. I’ve met people who keep their tattoos covered up. And I, like some of you I imagine, have made a split second decision about a person based on the ink that is visible on them when I first meet them. I’ve also been completely and 100% wrong about many of those people who I’d judged, simply based on their outward appearance. In fact, one of the sweetest, most caring men that my husband and I have ever met had full sleeve tattoos on both arms and multiple tattoos up his neck and behind his ears. I will never forget how bad I felt for prejudging him before I even knew who he really was. 

Most all of the people that I know who have a tattoo, got that ink on their body for a reason. Ask anyone who has tattoos about a certain piece of ink, and they will tell you what it means to them or why they did it. I’m sure there are people out there who got inked as a young person and now they regret it. But most of us, who pay money to an artist to have something put permanently in our skin, have a distinct reason, memory, meaning, or feeling behind it. I liken it to collecting art. Some people choose to collect paintings or sculptures and have them displayed in their homes. Then there are others that choose to carry their art with them, and these are the ones of us who decide to get the art put on our bodies. I’ve known people that get a tattoo as a memorial to a loved one that has passed away. I’ve known several women who have fought and survived breast cancer and have gotten the pink ribbon tattooed on their body as a sign of their victory. I’ve known people who have had their favorite Bible verse tattooed on their body to carry it with them all of the time. I’ve known men that have had full sleeve tattoos because they simply like the art and the look of it. There are usually stories behind someone’s tattoos; a reason why they did it or where they got it done or what it was like to get it.  I’m sure there are people out there who have gotten a tattoo to show their “individuality,” but in my limited experience, I really don’t see that as any kind of issue with tattoos. I have two, and I didn’t get mine because I wanted to be set apart as an individual. I got them because they both have personal meaning to me and I wanted to remember that meaning always. 

I don’t know where the stigma or prejudice against people with tattoos came from. I don’t know how long ago it started or even why it started. I do know that it does exist, and no matter how much people want to deny it, it is there, at the surface, and as I’ve said before, I’ve been guilty of it myself. I also don’t know if this particular DJ has any tattoos himself, but from the tone of his comments, I highly doubt it and I wonder if he’s not one of those people who truly judges books by their covers and doesn’t change that opinion. As I learned from my very tattooed friend, the cover doesn’t always represent who the person is inside. That is true not only for tattoos, but for judging someone based on the clothes that they wear or the vehicle that they drive. I understand that some companies might want to project a specific image with their employees, and if that is the case, then be specific when looking to hire someone. Don’t immediately assume that just because I have twelve piercings, two tattoos, and have been known to ride a Harley complete with the full black leather Harley gear, that I’m not worthy of your time or your good opinion. I also realize that everyone is entitled to their own opinion of matters, and this DJ was entitled to his. He voiced his obvious dislike of tattoos, and in some ways, those who have them. Likewise, I am entitled to defend people like myself, my friends, and my family, who are happily inked and have no problems with them. I am an individual, not because of the holes in my ears or the diamond stud in my nose. I am an individual, not because of the tattoos that are inked into my skin. I am an individual because I am me, and there is only one of me. There will never be another me, and that, in and of itself, sets me apart. 

To get a tattoo or not to get a tattoo is a question many people have asked and may ask themselves at some point in their lives. If you are one of us that choose to get inked, then do be proud of your art. Get it done from a reputable artist and carry that art with you gladly. If you are one that chooses not to ever get a tattoo, that is totally your prerogative, but don’t be judge, jury, and executioner of those of us who have them and decide what kind of person I am based on your perception of me and my ink. 

So, what are your thoughts on tattoos? On having them or not having them? On people who have them? What is your opinion?

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Does the "Real World" Suck Your Creativity Away?

Does the “Real World” Suck Your Creativity Away?

July 1, 2014

As I sit here reviewing this blog I see quickly that my last post was mid-April. How sad is that that I haven’t taken time to do anything in roughly 2-1/2 months?  I can assure you, it hasn’t been for lack of trying. I have found over the last 2-1/2 months that the rigors and requirements of everyday life have absolutely sucked away any and all creativity that I had before. 

For those that do not know me, my “real world” job is as a high school teacher.  I teach drafting to 9-12th grade students. And let me just tell you, being a teacher is NOT the easiest thing to do in the world, even with snow days and summers off. Now while I teach a Career and Technical class as opposed to English or Math, I may have fewer students in a day’s time, but there is still a lot of overwhelming things that have to happen as the school year winds down. When I wrote that last article in April, it was right at the beginning of what I refer to as “silly season” within the school system. This “season” consists of State wide competitions for various things; SOL (Standards of Learning) testing where students are out of class or are in class longer depending upon how the day’s schedule is altered; certification tests for Drafting credentials (basically a Drafting SOL); end of school picnics; senior activities; awards days; studying for final exams; taking the final exams; and all of the year end paperwork. Even though this was the 8th year that I’ve done this, for some reason, this year’s end of the year work seemed to be way more taxing on my brain and especially on my creativity.

Now, for the last 2-1/2 months, I have not been able to concentrate long enough to create anything. I had noticed that I’d even stopped singing in the car (my practice studio) and that is one of my most favorite things to do to get revved up for work and to wind down from the work day. It seemed like there wasn’t time to actually accomplish anything and that’s odd because there was the same amount of time in the day as there was 8 years ago when I did it the first time and survived.  I don’t think that I’m the only one that was feeling that stress and all that anxiety at the end of this year. It seemed that many of us in my building were feeling the same thing. 

As of today, I’ve been out of school for right at three weeks. I should be rested and rejuvenated by now but I still feel stressed and overwhelmed by all that needs to be done. The grass needs mowing – by the time I finish mowing, it’s just about time to start it all up again. I have 3 flower beds that need to be reclaimed – I need to seriously work on weed removal. I have 3 horses that I am trying to get under saddle before the end of July. We are still in the process of mowing and baling the first cutting of hay. The barn needs to be finished. The cage around the chicken coop needs to be finished. The trim around the ceiling in the kitchen needs to be painted and a few places on the walls touched up. There are about 1,000 things inside the house – other than general cleaning and laundry – that needs to be done. The siding on the house needs to be washed along with all the windows. The deck needs to be washed and sealed before winter. The shed needs to be cleaned out and many, many things thrown away. The roof on the storage building needs to be patched before winter. And the list goes on, and on, and on, and on, and…. Well, you get the idea.

I’m not sure what one has to do to find balance in all of the everyday activities and requirements that we all face. I’m not sure how to get everything done and still find time for self and for a moment of creativity and enjoyment. My mind is starting to feel a little free-er than it has in the past couple of months, but still not 100% as it was before. I know that I don’t like it when I’m not creative. I don’t like it when I’m not writing or singing or living in some imaginary land in my mind. I’ve become complacent and lackadaisical and neither of those is who I really am.

With this post, I’m hoping that I can slowly get things back on track in my mind. I hope that I can find that inner spark that keeps me wanting to do new and different things and that keeps me up beat and spunky. I’m hoping to dig back into the imaginary lands that my co-writer and I have created and finish some projects that we’ve been working on! And I hope to stop letting the real world junk suck away my creativity!! Stay tuned and see what happens!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Pay Attention

Pay Attention

April 14, 2014 

I have been a licensed driver both in the State of Virginia and the State of Tennessee for many years now. Up to this point, I’ve had one speeding ticket and thank the Good Lord above; I’ve not had any accidents. Up until a few years ago, I had never really given much thought to the subjects that I would like to talk about today. But, having been on the other end of both situations, I thought they would be valid topics and something a little different. 

We are all taught to not let things distract us while we are driving – however in this ever changing, instant gratification society with cell phones, we are constantly connected with texts, emails, calls, etc. that all come flying at us when we’re behind the wheel – it seems nearly impossible to not get distracted even if only for a second or two.  When I pass drivers that are paying more attention to their phone than to their driving I just want to have a loud speaker on my car where I can scream at them to “Shut up and Drive!!!”  Alas, as agitated as I get with the cellphone drivers, this is still not either of the two subjects for this writing. 

Where I live is very rural. There are all types of farms all around the area. Farms mean tractors, hay wagons, trucks pulling trailers, and this kind of thing on the road with all of the regular traffic. I have always tried to be respectful to the farmers that I’ve passed along the road. Like when I get behind the big tractor of my dairy farmer neighbor out on the main road, I slow down, put my flashers on, and laze behind him until he turns off or until I do. He’s got just as much right to be out on that road as I do. But until my husband and I started doing some minor (very minor) farming of our own, I had never really paid much attention to how my fellow road riders treat slower moving or loaded down vehicles. 

In my eighteen plus months of dealing with horses, I’ve only ever ridden in a truck pulling a loaded horse trailer twice. I have never driven a vehicle pulling a horse trailer period. Now common sense would tell that it is harder to stop a vehicle pulling a trailer even if that trailer is empty. Even if that trailer has brakes of its own, they still will not stop on a dime. Also, if you’re not very careful, that trailer could jack knife and come around the side of the truck, and possibly flip over if you try to stop too quickly. But, if you have livestock – horses, cows, etc. – in a trailer you really cannot stop suddenly as you’ll cause the animals to fall and possibly be seriously injured. Now I don’t know how many of you reading this know much about horses, but that trailer floor is not skid resistant and their hooves are not like the non-skid treads on the bottom of your favorite hiking boots. I can also just about guarantee you, that as soon as you load a horse into a trailer one of the first things they’re going to do is poop and more than likely, before you get to your destination, they’re going to pee. Keep in mind that all of this goes on the floor of the trailer and that does not help in any way, shape, or form with the slippery part. So combine the moving trailer with a slippery floor and an animal that doesn’t have non-skid boots on, and you’ve got a possibility any time you put one in a trailer of getting one seriously hurt. For any of you out there that have hauled animals, I’m sure you’ll agree with me that the load you’re hauling is far more valuable than any ding-dong that pulls out in front of you. So my words of advice to those drivers out there not hauling animals around in a slippery, moving box behind your truck: PAY ATTENTION to what you’re doing when you see these vehicles coming toward you. Remember that they can’t stop quickly. Remember that all turns and some curves are going to be taken wider than a normal vehicle. Remember that the left wheel of the trailer will generally need to stay on the yellow line in the middle of the road so that the right wheel doesn’t run off the shoulder. Remember that you need to not follow so closely behind that trailer – you are not practicing your NASCAR drafting, as you will not be able to stop if something happens with that truck/trailer combination. Remember that if you’re stopped behind one of these vehicles at a red-light that more than likely, the driver is going to let the vehicle ease back ever so slightly as the gears engage and it starts to pull off – you cannot burn rubber with a load of animals in a trailer. But MOST IMPORTANTLY, remember, if you cause me to wreck because you’re being stupid and you hurt one of my animals, you’d better be prepared for my wrath unless said wreck completely knocks me out or kills me in the process (I’m betting that last statement goes for any animal lover who is transporting their beloved pets). 

Whilest on the subject of farming and trailers, not only do you need to pay attention to trailers full of animals, but trailers hauling tractors/farm equipment and trailers hauling loads of hay. Same thing applies here for the not being able to stop part but with hauling hay, that’s usually done by pulling a hay wagon which is NOT your typical trailer. These wagons were not meant for speed. They were simply meant to follow behind a tractor/baler combination and carry bales of hay to the barn. For some farmers, their hay fields are miles away from their barns and that requires them to pull these loaded hay wagons up and down roads to get to their destination. These wagons also tend to weave as they get up to a certain speed on paved surfaces, which makes them a little more difficult to handle. Same “Remembering” rules apply to this to. I guess more than anything to remember here is just simple, common courtesy. These folks have a right to be out on the road. Sure the speed might not be that fast and sometimes they take up the majority of the road. But really, is it going to kill you to pull over to the edge of the road to let them pass or to be more courteous or patient while they’re traveling near you on the roads?

The other rant that I have for this writing is to pay attention to those riding motorcycles. With the warmer weather now, there will be more and more of these on the roads. As a car driver, I’d never really paid much attention to the motorcycle riders. As a motorcycle rider/driver however, I most definitely paid attention to being out on the road with all of the bigger, enclosed vehicles. Trust me when I tell you, even though motorcycles are smaller and do not weigh as much as a car, they are twice as hard to stop as your average car or SUV. You CANNOT stop quickly on a bike. If you do, one of two things is going to happen. You’re either going to lock up the front brakes and go over the handlebars, or you’re going to lock up the back brakes and lay the thing down. Either way, you’re going to wind up with road rash – even if you’ve got on leathers – and quite possibly a concussion – even if you’re wearing a helmet – or worse. So DON’T pull out in front of an oncoming bike just because you think you’ve got plenty of time and you’re bigger than the bike is. Keep in mind when you’re on a multilane highway that a motorcycle rider could possibly be in your blind spot as you start to change lanes so look and look carefully. Some motorcycle models don’t have a loud Harley sound to them so you might not even know that one is nearby. Trust me when I tell you that that rider is not only focusing on operating that bike, but they’re also focusing on the mass of vehicles around them. It is not an easy job. Do not tailgate a motorcycle in any way, shape, or form. You never know when something could go wrong or when the driver could lose control of the bike. Would you be able to live with yourself knowing that you’d just run over someone because you were playing “It’s Bristol Baby” on the local highway? Remember to PAY ATTENTION to these riders out there. Be sure that if you see a large group pass you by that you wait a few extra moments to make sure that they all have passed by. Again, it is simple, common courtesy that needs to be followed when out there on the highways!!

I know that there are many days when I get to the house and don’t remember anything of my roughly seventeen mile trip. We all have tons of things on our minds, we get distracted by a phone call or text message sounding on our cell phones, we’re paying too much attention to singing the song on the radio at the top of our lungs, or any other number of possible things that could detract from the job of driving a 7,000 pound speeding bullet down the highway. All’s I’m really saying here is PAY ATTENTION to what’s around you. Look out for each other and think that one day you might be that person pulling a trailer full of livestock that needs a break from the drivers around them, or you might be that person pulling a fully loaded, weaving hay wagon down a curvy road where everyone you pass wants to crowd you, or you might be that motorcycle rider that everyone and their brother has pulled out in front of on any given day. Ask yourself if you’d be rednecking those drivers if it was your dad, mom, brother, sister, grandma, grandpa, or anyone else that you hold near and dear to you; because that rider or driver is someone’s mother, father, sister, brother, friend, wife, husband. That license that we carry in our wallets that says that we are legal drivers of those motor vehicles are more than just a piece of plastic – or at least they should be more. They should also remind us that we’re responsible when we are out there on the road, not only for our own safety but for the safety of those that we pass. Don’t be the distracted car driver that takes out a motorcycle because you reach down to check the newest text message on your phone. Don’t be the one that is responsible for someone having to put down several horses because you caused the truck and trailer hauling them to wreck and they’re hurt more seriously than they can be helped by conventional medicine. 

So…PAY ATTENTION…and come back to read another blog story/rant at a later date!!

Stay Safe Out There!!!!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Critter Fun!!

Critter Fun

March 17, 2014

For those of you that have followed me for a little bit, I’m sure you’ve noticed that my posts have been a bit preachy lately. I decided when I started this blog that I wanted to speak my mind, but I also wanted to have fun with it. After reporting about my trip aboard the USS George H. W. Bush, I’ve kind of lost that “fun” aspect of my writing. I’ve pondered what I wanted to talk about for a while now. It seems that my funny side is actually quite snarky instead of funny at the moment, but I still wanted to do something to liven things up a bit and to try to bring smiles to my reader’s faces instead of just the same old thing. My solution to this dilemma is to share with you something that ALWAYS brings a smile to my face and always brightens even the worst of moods and soothes the most extreme of panic attacks... What would that be you ask? That would be to introduce you to the critters that live at Radagast Farms that make my days so much fun!

There are eight horses, a donkey, a mule, three dogs, and me and my husband that reside on our farm. I hope this year to add a couple of goats and a handful of chickens to the mix of characters, but for now, the fifteen of us are quite happy. There is usually never a dull moment either.

Let’s start by introducing the three Canine varieties that live on my hill. There’s Sassy, who aptly got her name because she likes to yap back at me when I tell her to do something. She is a little, white, English Setter/Mountain Feist mix. Her full sister Molly, who is tri color and actually more sassy than Sassy is, is the resident grouch and little old curmudgeon. These two are eight years old, almost nine and the only time they’ve ever spent a night a part was when they had to spend the night in the vet’s office after getting spayed (they howled at each other all night and all day long until I came to get them – lol). They were pretty well Queens of the Hill until the new comer, Miss Abby, came to join our gangly mob in August. Abby is a roughly one year old, black and white lab/pitt bull mix and she is full throttle 24/7. She does not know what slow down means. Needless to say, her older, more set in their way sisters have struggled in getting used to their new lot mate. It’s still very funny to me to watch the three of them together. They’re adapting, slowly, but adapting!

                                                                Miss Abby
                                                                 Miss Molly
                                             Miss Sassy

Next, let me introduce you to the resident donkey. The donkey is an aged, gelded jack that I wouldn’t trade for anything. Technically speaking, he belongs to my grandson, but I love that little critter like crazy! His name is Apple Jack or A.J. as Wayne and I call him, and he is just the coolest little guy. He has actually met me at the water tubs to get treats after being way far away from them, but hearing me tell him, “Meet me at the water buckets and I’ll give you a goody.” Trust me doubters, the first time he did it I thought it was a fluke, but he’s done it two other times so I’m pretty sure the little guy knows what I’m telling him. The other good thing about Mr. A.J. is that he smells like he’s wearing cologne all the time! If I could figure out how to bottle up Apple Jack smell, I’d be a rich, rich woman! He’s very laid back until one of the others gets in the way of his treats. He stays to himself, and he’s smart enough to find shade in the summer and cover in the winter. He’s very, very lovable, and I’ve gotten so attached to him, and I think him to me, that I’ll probably go nuts if anything happens to him before it does to me.

                                     Apple Jack & me

Then you’ll find Harry. Harry is the neighborhood mule. He’s sorrel in color with flaxen mane and tail. And what can I say about Harry? Harry is just Harry! He’s goofy as all get outs, he has absolutely no social skills, and he is just the farm comedian. He will absolutely root the horses out of the way instead of walking around them. He’ll chest block his buddy Ghost just because he can. The mares despise him, they will lay their ears back at him when he gets within six feet of them. Harry is one half of the Moron and Putz team – it varies from day to day as to who is Moron and who is Putz. But I can’t help but love him, and I do and probably only God knows why. That silly beastie can put a smile on my face about as quick as anybody!

                                       Harry and me

Now, as for the Equines on the farm, we have Ghost, Spirit, Hanz, Bentley, Maggie, Sonny, Jasper, and PJoe. There is not a one of these horses that is natured like the other. They all have very distinct and individual personalities.

Sonny is the baby. He’s just over two years old. He is buckskin in color and he is spoiled rotten. He has his routine and he does not like to get out of it. He is pretty much just like a two year old kid with mischievous things to get into and the occasional showing off time. I have been able to sit on his back a few times, just standing near the fence. And I’ve sat on his back once while Wayne led him around the lot with a halter on. All of those times he did great! I can’t wait to actually get to work with him and ride him for real! Stay tuned for info on that!!

             Sonny and his daddy! He's grown A LOT since this!

Next, there’s Jasper. Jasper will be six in May and to this point, he’s never been ridden. He’s almost solid sorrel in color except for the white bands on his front legs and sock on his back. This gentleman has been with us for almost a year and I am so excited to get to start working with him this spring and summer! He has learned in that year that he likes attention and he likes people rubbing on him and scratching on him. When he first came to us you could touch his face and that was about it. He just had never been messed with. He’s my other baby though and like Apple Jack he smells like he’s wearing cologne. One of my favorite things to do, especially after a hard day is to just go out and get a good Jasper hug and scratch him till my hands get tired! Stay tuned for info on this one too!

                                      Jasper and me

Then there’s Ghost. Ghost is an aged gelding that is flea-bitten grey in color. He is the other half of the Moron and Putz team (with Harry). Ghost thinks he’s king of hill but, he is only when Hanz lets him be. He likes to keep the girls herded up near him and keep the other boys away. His hair feels like a powder puff. He’s pretty laid back when you ride him. He was the first horse that I really felt comfortable riding by myself when I started riding. Thanks to him I’ll crawl on almost anything with 4 legs and Equine blood! Keep in mind I said Almost anything!! Anyway, he’s a grumpy little old man that I love like no body’s business!

                                         Ghost and me

PJoe is the newest member of our herd. He’s a young dun colored gelding. He’s short and stocky and has the “short man’s (horse’s)” attitude. He came to us last September and we’ve not gotten to ride him yet. That’ll come this spring too. We may have to change his name depending on how he rides and gets accustomed to having the saddle back on him again. Keep your fingers crossed for us and him! 

                                     PJoe & me being silly
Mr. Bentley is probably by far the most laid back critter on the farm. He has the calmest demeanor of any critter I’ve ever seen. Even when he’s eating and Abby is running 90 mph around him, he is just as calm and never flinchy. He’s black in color with just a little white but he is a giant baby! Bentley smells like he’s wearing cologne too. He is the ultimate gentleman and the gentle horse on the place! 

                                         Bentley and me

The last of the boys on the place is Mr. Hanz. Hanz belongs to my grandson and he is a former barrel racer (the horse, not the grandson yet). He’s retired and hanging out with us. He’s dun colored with white on his face and his legs. He’s a gentle horse with little people and that’s really all he can deal with now. No matter how hard my grandson tried to get him to trot the last time he worked him, he wouldn’t. He got up to a faster walk and that’s it. He keeps Ghost in check in the field and lets him play boss occasionally. But he’s not one to take being pushed around and will flat kick those heels up if one steps over a line toward him. The only one he tolerates with no questions asked and no issues is Apple Jack and those two are usually pretty close together.

                                            Mr. Hanz
The two mares are somewhat similar to each other, in that they are both terrible divas. I do believe Spirit (the sorrel and white paint) is far more a diva than Maggie (sorrel w/ flaxen mane/tail) is. If Spirit were as dainty as she thinks she is, she’d be the size of a teacup poodle. But alas, she is quite a hefty gal. She’s very stubborn. Maggie isn’t quite as bad as Spirit, but she doesn’t stray too far from that diva-ness. Maggie is old but she is kind and she’s good with little people. 

Spirit and me
                                           Miss Maggie
Well, now you’ve met the whole herd – Canine to Hybrid Equid to Equine. We are a different kind of herd than most, but we’re a herd and that’s what matters. I never thought I’d ever enjoy working so hard for something as I do with working with these animals! I am by no means an expert on anything to do with them, but I have learned a lot over the last eighteen months, and I learn something new each and every day! I hope to bring you more stories about those critters, especially once we start working with the boys and getting them under saddle! I’m excited! I only hope they are!