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“Do more of what makes you happy.”

What makes you happy?Do more of what makes you happy.

One of the best parts of this strangely ‘nomadic’ lifestyle we started living almost five months ago is that it is becoming easier to see what is important. Downsizing from our house and moving into a 950 square foot apartment was a huge move. Looking back on it, it was mostly ‘stuff’ that caused the stress.

We just moved again 12 days ago. As of today when people ask ‘so where are you living’ we can just say ‘here.’ Today, ‘here’ is Findlay, Ohio. In another 12 days we will be in Corry, Pennsylvania.

During each move we shed more stuff. Right now we are staying in a hotel for a short time and it is amazing how little you need to live. Having said that the boys and I just unpacked the entire horse trailer to get to a few of the essentials that were packed in the front, oops. (Jesse is driving back from judging ALL day yesterday-15 hours straight!)

The less stuff that we have…the easier it is becoming to see what makes me happy. I am sunburned (another oops), sweaty and covered with sand from riding horses and bikes all day.

This idea of having less and doing more isn’t new. On a recent visit to Old Mans Cave in Logan, Ohio I found this inspiring plaque honoring Emma ‘Grandma’ Gatewood. At 67 she decided to take up hiking…a lot! She hiked the 2,000 mile Appalachian trail THREE TIMES!  Now there is a woman who knew how to pack light!

Grandma Emma Gatewood

I found this plaque very inspirational.

 

 

 
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Posted by on July 6, 2014 in Life

 

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Stops with Stacy: traveling with horses; horse motels brought to you by Tekonsha

We frequently travel with our horses to far off places. We have trailered horses from Maine to California, Florida, Texas, Nebraska, several times into Canada to name a few.

To keep both horses and humans safe, on long trips we stop for the night. Recently, I have made several trips between Texas and Ohio. The drive takes about 20 hours which I break into a two day trip.

The nice thing about traveling the same route is that it is possible to become familiar with certain amenities…including the horse motels along the way.

If we are traveling an unfamiliar route and need to find a place to stop we go to www.horsemotel.com. The website features a map that gives an idea of where the stable is located so I can quickly see if there is one on my route.

My favorite feature of the website is the comment area. It is a section of the website where people who have stayed at each horse motel can rate the stay and leave comments. We have been using the site for years and have stayed at dozens of the stops. By reading the descriptions and the comments all have been what was described.

Some places can handle a large number of horses and other might only take two or three. We try to call in advance to let people know we are traveling through the area and to ask if they will have room. There have been time, however, when we have hit bad weather and could not make it to our original horse motel. The original hotel has always been understanding and the new hotel, with as short as one hour for notice, has also been accommodating.

Some offer lodging for the humans also in the form of cabins, apartments or RV hook ups. If they don’t they can give valuable advice as to how far human hotels are and what they recommend; much of this is already listed at horsemotel.com.

Cindy Ruprecht and Circle R Horse Lodge has been my go-to stop between Texas and Ohio. Her place is close to the highway and her stalls are big, sturdy and clean. Like most horse motels Cindy checks the horses health papers and coggins, which I like. Stopping at Cindy’s place already has the feeling of visiting with a friend and I like knowing that she checks on the horses while I am headed to my human hotel and again in the morning before I arrive.

Many of these places could be destination trips. Some have miles of trails or easy access to other horse activities and others can offer invaluable information for things that might occur on the road. For example Cindy has a local horse trailer shop and RV store nearby if you need repairs as well as a feed dealer and tack store.

Traveling with horses is extra work but it is also a great way to get to know other horse people around the country.

 
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Posted by on June 5, 2014 in Stops with Stacy, Video

 

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Just a bit further down the road….blankets, horses and traveling

With the crazy-late night we had before we left Ohio we haven’t been making the best time as we travel. On the flip side we have met some great people and are managing to catch up on our sleep (in the hotels…not while we drive).Jac blanket

Most of our horses were blanketed this winter in Ohio which is going to come in handy with this move to Texas. As we travel we need to take the ever changing temperatures into account as well as the idea that the horses are working a bit as we travel. Here you can see Jac is taking off a layer before loading up in the trailer.

Today as we travel we will be leaving while it is 30 degrees but within two hours of driving it will be 59 degrees and will be 69 degrees later than that. With five horses in the trailer the plan is to take blankets off and then regulate the temperature by keeping the trailer closed up at the beginning and then opening rear windows as needed. It is important to remember to leave some windows in the rear cracked because five horse breathing in the trailer does create a lot of condensation. Have you ever noticed in the cold weather that a car load of people in a vehicle makes the windows hard to keep defogged? Same idea but inside the horse trailer.Horse motels are very helpful on the road.

Signing off for now, I have to go load up horses. Jac is almost as excited about being ridden as I am about riding him…lol. He is so full of energy because I didn’t ride him the last few days in Ohio as we packed and he is very, very fit from being ridden in 20 degree weather at home. I hope he and Newt behaved last night in their side by side stalls. Maybe I will ride in the next few days?

 
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Posted by on February 16, 2014 in Training

 

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Let the travels begin! Horse motels and the weather.

Happy Valentine’s Day and happy moving day!SNOW 1

We officially moved out of our house in Ohio today and our first stop it Texas…but the midwest isn’t done with us yet. We planned on driving 374 miles in six hours (per map quest)….but add snow into it and we managed to drive 181 miles in six and a half hours.

On the up side, we haven’t had a reason to stay at a horse motel this close to (our former) home. We had already arranged a horse motel, thanks to horsemotel.com, but when the travel slowed to a max of 40 mph we began a new search.

We try to schedule ahead but with weather issues that sometimes isn’t a choice. We were happy to find Cuttin’ horse motelUp Stables and Mike and Melinda Gerrish. They were very understanding about the weather…especially considering that we were calling on Valentine’s Day!

Maybe the best part was that Mike was kind enough to offer to help us in the morning if we have trouble loading our horses, lol! Turns out not only does he like to ride cutting horses….he also likes verbally ‘cuttin’ up’….lol

snow 2

Well plowed drive….

snow 3

Horse at entrance, nope, he isn’t frozen…just a statue….

 
24 Comments

Posted by on February 14, 2014 in Life

 

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