Equine Focus

Thoughts of a twenty-something reporter

Awareness

April 1st, 2014 Posted in Posts Tags: , , ,

Normally my blog is full of laughs or just my random ramblings, but for this edition I’m taking a more serious approach, so bear with me.

Over the weekend, like many of you, read about the 15 dead horses discovered on a farm in Reading.

I’m sure many people were just as upset as I was, but as a horse owner, it hit close to home because Faith (my horse) was a rescue and she too was discovered on a farm emaciated and very ill.

I can’t attest as to why these horses were not given the proper care, but I can tell you the reality of being a horse owner, and some of the possible reasons why things like this happen.

The reality is: It’s expensive, and most people think they can handle it, realizing later that they can’t.

Just like with any type of farming the cost is stressful.

I realize horse ranches or owners get over looked a lot, and not considered a true farmer, but the truth is we put in the time, money and effort just like everyone else.

For an individual to even just own one horse it costs about $318 a month, and that’s just your standard one horse, if you have your own property and don’t have to board, one 130 pound bale of hay, trimming by a farrier, and basic health care.

However if you board a horse and don’t have the luxury of owning land, your price could be in the thousands each month, and many other factors make that cost go up.

Education is key.

For example, when I purchased Faith I was responsible for putting weight back on her.

I fed her twice a day, with a weight gain supplement (another added cost), and when she wasn’t eating grain she was put in a pasture to eat hay all day she did that for about six months.

It took about nine months for Faith to weigh the proper amount, and she gained roughly over 250 pounds from when I first bought her.

My rant will conclude with, before you or anyone you know is looking into buying a horse/s, educate yourself on the cost, time and work that goes into it.

If you can afford it and have the time, being a horse owner is one of the most rewarding experiences a person can have.

Before.

After.

To selfie or not to selfie

March 20th, 2014 Posted in Posts Tags: , ,

Here at the Daily Globe office, we tend to strike up interesting conversations among ourselves.

        It’s usually about local news or even interesting topics that are in the national news, but Wednesday’s topic of conversation happened to stray from the usual and landed on pictures, and not just any pictures, but ‘selfies’.

For those who have not heard of the infamous selfie, these are photos that you take, normally with a cell phone, of yourself or with a group of friends, but they must be taken by you, otherwise they’re not considered a selfie.

You can usually find selfies plastered all over Facebook or any other social media website, and yes I’ll admit I am a taker of selfies.

In attribute to this popular trend, there is now a song on the radio called ‘The Selfie Song’, yes it’s real, and in my opinion, garbage.

It makes that other trendy song ‘The Fox Song’, look like a Grammy award winning musical production.

This conversation first got started when our Community Content Coordinator, Aaron Hagen, asked me if I had heard the song, and being a happening twenty-something, of course I’ve heard it.

This sparked a few conversations, first off, how could a song like this make it to the airwaves?

In all fairness, I believe Hagen was more disappointed that ‘The Fox Song’ was never played on the radio, so I think there was a little bias on his part.

Another popular remark was, “What is wrong with American society?” or “What is wrong with today’s generation?”

I’ll admit some of our generation’s ideas are not all winners. We’ll take responsibility for twerking, Justin Bieber and the term ‘swag’ but selfies, in my opinion, are harmless.

Studies have shown that taking selfies actually has improved, especially girls’, self-esteem. If someone takes a picture of themselves that they think they look good in and post it to a social media site then I see no issue. If it boosts your confidence, then I say go for it.

However, I will take this time to apologize for the awful selfie song. Just because I agree with the act, does not mean I agree with the song, but I’ll let you be the judge.

Spring is shedding

March 6th, 2014 Posted in Posts

I think everyone has their certain telltale signs about when spring will arrive.

Sometimes it’s seeing that first blade of grass pop up out of the snow, for others it might be the slight rise in temperatures, but my sign is shedding.

Yes, shedding, not me personally, but my horse.

As an equestrian, and if there are others like me out there who read this will know, you can always tell when spring is upon us when clumps of hair start to fall while grooming your horse.

All winter long we wait for the day when our furry friends start to shed that winter coat.

As for my horse Faith, this is furriest she’s ever been, so much so that her bridle doesn’t fit over her head, and her saddle is a bit tighter than usual, but the colder it is, the furrier they get.

I compare it to the whole Groundhog Day rule; you know if a groundhog sees his shadow, we’ll have six more weeks of winter.

Well, for me, as long as Faith isn’t shedding then I know that spring isn’t coming yet.

Luckily, the other day when I was grooming her, she was starting to shed that winter coat, and other people at the barn were also saying that their horses have been shedding as well.

Now, I don’t know if this is a legitimate sign if spring is coming, but I figure it’s just as promising as what the weather man says.

Quit complaining

February 24th, 2014 Posted in Posts

Unfortunately as reporters sometimes we have to be the bearer of bad news.

Lately, the bad news has been the weather, with bone chilling temperatures and snow falling at least every other day.

Trust me when I say, we are just as tired reporting it just as much as you are hearing it. It feels like this winter weather will never let up.

However, my spirits were brightened when a woman from Brewster gave me a call to simply tell everyone to quit complaining, because there had definitely been worse winters than the one we’re experiencing this year.

This woman informed me that while going through old boxes she came across clippings from the Daily Globe dating back to the 1800’s

These clippings weren’t just at random, they were all articles about blizzards that have happened spanning from the late 1800’s all the way up to the 1990’s.

For example, the blizzard of 1936 lasted for six weeks, with snowfall ranging from two to four inches, with restricted visibility and slippery roads.

The Armistice Day blizzard, occurring in 1940, was a two-day blizzard resulting in snow accumulation up to 27 inches in some areas, winds of 50 to 80 mph and 20 foot snow drifts.

The Armistice Day blizzard ranks number two in Minnesota’s list of top-5 weather events of the 20th century.

A blizzard that struck southwest Minnesota in March in 1870 also made headlines with up to 16 inches of snowfall hitting the area.

It was very refreshing to hear that this definitely isn’t the worst southwest Minnesota has seen, and that if others can make it through tough weather, so can we.

Hopefully our winter woes won’t extend into March, but I think if anyone can handle bad weather, it’s us.

I mean c’mon, we’re Minnesotans, we got this.

Child vs. Horse

February 13th, 2014 Posted in Posts

I’m fairly used to people asking about Faith, my 10 year old thoroughbred; most of the time people ask how she is doing before how I’m doing.

I take it all in stride though, it is partly my fault since I refer to her as my kid, but I figure she has tantrums like one, eats like one and definitely costs just about as much as one. So, I think it’s a fair assessment.

Anyway I’m happy to report that she is doing much better, and I think is getting adjusted to her new Midwest home.

On my Tuesday night visit she was particularly in good spirits, and I even saw her eating hay with the other horses.

I now have some knowledge of what it feels like for parents who move and have to transfer their kids to a new school and hope they make friends.

The first words out of mouth were, “Faith, you made a friend!” Of course I was talking to a bunch of horses that just looked up at me briefly before continuing to eat, but needless to say I was happy that she is finally being included in the herd.

When I brought her into the barn she made no fuss about grooming, and even let me pick up her feet to clean them.

Since we’ve moved her not letting me pick up her feet has always been tell-tale sign that she was mad at me.

That may sound strange to some people.

How would she know if a horse is mad at her because it doesn’t want to pick its feet?

For one, before we moved she always let me, I never had a problem with this, but what really confirmed my suspicion was how she acted with the farrier.

For those who don’t know what a farrier is, it’s a person who specializes in treating and trimming horse’s hooves.

I was continually being told by the farrier that Faith is just “perfect” and she stands and lifts up her hooves like an “angel.”

She has hardly been acting like an angel for me, but as they always say about kids, they’re always nice to strangers and save the bad attitude for mom.

However, on my Tuesday visit there may have been some angel like behavior.

So for her especially good behavior I of course rewarded her with some treats, and even an apple. I can’t say enough how much Faith loves apples.

I’m hoping Faith is finally adjusted to her new home, or maybe it was the apple, either way I’m happy about the new attitude.

 

“Her”

January 21st, 2014 Posted in Posts

(This blog will contain some spoiler alerts, so shield your eyes in certain parts if you must!)

 

Even though the holiday season is over with, a new kind of season has arrived.

Where the celebrities dress up in their most glamorous of outfits, television stations are constantly filled with these programs and it gives me more of an excuse to go to the movie theatre

Of course I’m talking about award season.

I personally don’t watch every single award show, but I do make it a point to try and see every movie nominated for an Oscar.

I started my award season viewing with the movie “Her” starring Joaquin Phoenix, Scarlett Johansson and directed by Spike Jonze.

For those not familiar with the movie, it follows a man who makes his living writing touching, personal letters for other people.

Heartbroken after the end of his marriage, he becomes intrigued with a new, advanced operating system, which promises to be an intuitive entity in its own right, individual to each user.

Upon initiating it, he is delighted to meet “Samantha,” a bright, female voice, who is insightful, sensitive and surprisingly funny.

In simpler terms, a guy falls in love with his computer, not a person over a computer, but an actual operating system.

Now, I’m not a movie critic, I don’t claim to be, but I’ve heard two debates over this movie.

  1. It shows how technology is ruining us all, and we’ll eventually not want to have any human contact.
  2.  It just shows a different kind of relationship.

After seeing the movie with my mom, we both honestly agreed with the second option.

As a 22-year-old I get told all the time that I wouldn’t know what to do without my cell phone or that my entire generation would be completely lost without technology, which for the record at least in my household and many other twenty something’s that I know didn’t have a computer in the house until we were about 14, so yes we did grow up without computers, anyway I digress.

To say that the movie reflects what human interaction and relationships will be like in the future I believe is a little far-fetched.

In my opinion, it shows a different kind of relationship and that love can be found anywhere, even I guess, in a personalized operating system.

“Her” was definitely an interesting way to start off my annual Oscar movie viewings, but if you’re looking for a thought provoking and quite endearing movie, I suggest “Her”.

 

Embrace change in 2014

January 9th, 2014 Posted in Posts

I have now been a Worthington resident for about three months, and my thoroughbred Faith, who made the move with me, has been at her new home in Baltic, S.D., for about the same amount of time.

Unfortunately, I have accepted the move a lot easier than she has. Lately, she has been angry, and acting out because of it. I always say horses are like children; they’re very emotional and need a lot of attention.

Who could blame her for being angry? I did take her away from our previous home in New York, where she was comfortable and happy.

Despite my best efforts of trying to get her adjusted to her new home, I can tell it’s going to be a long process.

Now that the New Year is here, Faith’s recent attitude has got me thinking about acceptance and change in 2014.

With the New Year comes change, some willing and some unexpected. The main thing I have learned is to take those changes head on, and embrace them.

Let the New Year changes take you where they may. After all, this is page nine of 365; make sure you write a year worth sharing.

As for Faith, we’ll keep working on embracing the change in her life – little trickier with a horse.

Traditions part two

December 23rd, 2013 Posted in Posts

During Thanksgiving I wrote about my turkey day traditions and featured a picture of my mom’s famous turkey cookies.

Now that it’s Christmas time – and since my mom was so thrilled about the turkey cookies being featured in my blog before – she decided to make extra special Christmas cookies this year.

Around this time of year, whenever it’s on, my family and I always have to sit in our living room together and watch “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.”

It’s one of our favorite Christmas movies – and personally I love the clay animation – so in honor of that tradition my mom decided to make Rudolph and Clarice cookies.

My mom normally makes your traditional Christmas cookies – trees, snowmen, Santa – but this year she added a personal touch by incorporating one of our treasured Christmas traditions.

When I was in my teens I thought this tradition was lame, since I’ve seen the movie so many times, but now having been out of the house for many years it’s a tradition that I cherish.

Also, now that my brother is in his teens, I force him to sit down with us and watch it – despite the slight eye roll that I get.

Even though I’ve been out of the house for a while now, and my brother will soon be leaving too, my mom makes Christmas – in her over the top way - magical every year.

Bright Side of Crime Reporting

December 11th, 2013 Posted in Posts

Being the crime reporter at the Daily Globe definitely has its ups and downs.

It’s always exciting to hear a call over the scanner and race down to scene, but it’s also tough reading and writing stories that involve more serious and violent crimes.

However, Wednesday morning I was covering an event on the lighter side of my crime reporting duties. The Minnesota Cornerstone Drug Court hosted its first graduation ceremony, for a young woman named Beatriz, who is the first to graduate from the drug court program.

Two years ago, she was facing 4th and 2nd degree criminal controlled substance charges – today she is 830 days sober and is enrolled at Minnesota West here in Worthington.

During the ceremony, over 20 participants were called up and announced how long they have been sober, and they each gave an update about themselves and how their treatment is going. It was remarkable to hear each and every one of their stories and how they have been doing since their charges or convictions – it seemed as though this program completely changed their life.

Towards the end of the ceremony Beatriz was recognized for her accomplishments, and officially graduated from drug court. It was very touching to hear the judge; a couple of her counselors and even her father speak on how proud they were of her, and how much she has grown.

Crime reporting isn’t always easy or that fun to write about sometimes, but today I was happy to be sitting in the court room for such a happy and celebratory occasion.

Turkey Tradition

November 29th, 2013 Posted in Posts

Tradition, this is defined as the transmission of customs or beliefs from generation to generation.

For Thanksgiving in the Trester household it means a 28 pound turkey, a 10 pound ham, venison, bison, and elk meat, and of course wine…lots of wine.

This year, I was definitely thankful that I did not have to hop on a plane to get home for the holiday season, but I was also thankful for tradition.

Every year before our Thanksgiving feast my mother makes tons of horderves. Cookies, candies, meat and cheese tray, vegetables, almost anything you can think of. Basically, we have a meal before the really big meal.

So, when I walked downstairs at 8:00 a.m. it was no surprise that I would see my mother baking away – since 5:00 a.m., but this year I saw her making these huge turkey cookies. The kind you would see on the cover of those baking magazines.

Once my mom saw me she immediately “volunteered” me to join in and help and then I too was decorating these turkey cookies.

Once I got the hang of things the cookies I was decorating started looking like the ones my mom already finished.

It was nice to help out even if it was just with decorating. I always love visiting with my mom and to once

again be a part of our Thanksgiving tradition. They are traditions that I know I will pass on when it’s my turn to make the Thanksgiving meal one day.

Although my mom goes just a little overboard with Thanksgiving, I think she knows we all would be disappointed if it wasn’t just as over the top as the year before.

Oh, and even though the cookies were too cute to eat…they were delicious.

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