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Happy Tales: Fairy tales do come true

This happy tale has a point - A point for young adults, for graduates of high school and college: Dream. Dreams really do come true. Click on headline for complete column with photo(s)
The Next Earlier Peg Schaeffer column: Happy Tail - Happy Mother's Day in the animal world

By Peg Schaeffer

California Chrome won the Preakness on Saturday. He also won the Kentucky Derby two weeks prior. This means in three weeks there is a chance of a Triple Crown Winner. In the past 36 years, since Affirmed won the Triple Crown in 1978, 13 horses have won the first two legs of the Triple Crown but have failed to win the Belmont. I think that this year we might see a winner.

California Chrome is a fairy tale horse. His dam, Love the Chase, was purchased at a Maiden Claiming race for $8,000. His sire, Lucky Pulpit, had a stud fee of $2,500. (Since California Chrome won the Derby the stud fee has increased to $10,000) California Chrome's trainer is 77 years old and one of the owners celebrated his 61st birthday on Derby Day. Just his winning the Derby proves that dreams do come true and if he goes on to win the Triple Crown it shows that you can succeed without being rich. It takes perseverance and believing in yourself.

Throughout my life I've been a dreamer

Throughout my life I've always been a dreamer. I always read the books about the girl who loved horses and when she went to her first horse show won all of the blue ribbons. My first horse show I entered every class I could. I didn't win a ribbon until the last class which had five entries. I won 4th place only because one of the horses ran out of the ring with his rider and was disqualified. But that didn't stop me. If you start at the bottom of the ladder all you can do is go UP.

My first pony was bought at an auction for $145. My cousin, Gus, had seen the pony at an auction the previous week. He said it seemed to be a nice pony and didn't understand why the buyer only kept him for a week. We found out the first day I had him. I walked out to the pasture excited to ride my new horse. He stood at the pasture looking at me. As I got close enough to put the halter on him he swung around and kicked me. That answered the question as to why they only kept him for a week.

It wasn't long before Prince and I were winning blue ribbons

I named him "Prince" and figured out how to catch him without being kicked. After our first disappointing horse show I practiced him every day. I learned about "leads" and improved my horsemanship. It wasn't long before we were winning blue ribbons and championships at the horse shows.

Once I out grew Prince I saved my money and bought a horse. His name was Chocolate Rebel. He was a big horse that was scared of his own shadow. You couldn't tie him up because something would spook him and he'd lean into his halter until it broke and run away. My first horse show with him I had to hold him rather than tie him to the trailer. He broke three halters that day.

After working and I working, I beat a rider with an expensive, unbeaten horse

So I worked and worked with him and finally cured him of his halter pulling. From there I started practicing different skills with him and we became hard to beat. I still remember a Trail Class I won on him. I beat a rider that had an expensive registered horse who never lost. One of the obstacles required side passing through some logs and my horse was the only one who could do it.

Garnett is my dream come true

I have a horse right now named "Garnet" who is my dream come true. I bought her dam, Silver Etching, a.k.a. "Rosie" at an auction and showed her in the jumpers for a year. That winter while I was in Ocala, FL at a horse show I saw a black stallion, Graf Rossini S, in the Grand Prix classes. He wasn't as big as the other horses and his rider was a young woman who was maybe 5 feet tall. This handsome horse had heart. He jumped those high fences with ease. When he was done and his rider dismounted he sniffed at her pocket for a peppermint. I knew this was the stallion I wanted to breed my mare to.

I was with Rosie when Garnet was born. I was the first person Garnet saw and she nickered at me. In the morning when I turned Garnet and Rosie out in the corral, Garnet began trotting over ground poles on her own. She was born with the love of jumping. She has grown to be an even better horse than I ever could have wished for. She's beautiful, talented, has a great personality, and she can JUMP. She's currently in Lexington being ridden by a college student. They won their first class together.

My point: Young adults need to know they can succeed in life

What's my point? I'm hoping students who are graduating - either from High School or College read this. Young adults need to know that they all have the ability to succeed in life. They don't need a lot of money - they need desire. They can attain any star they reach for. Like the owners and trainer of California Chrome it might take what seems like forever, but it still feels great when you obtain it. And when you reach one goal don't stop. Reach for another star. They're all within your reach. My best wishes to all graduates - I hope all of your dreams come true.

"All our dreams can come true...if we have the courage to pursue them." -- Walt Disney

Peg Schaeffer, Sugarfoot Farm Rescue, 860 Sparksville Road, Columbia, KY 42728 Telephone: home 270-378-4521 or cell 270-634-4675 email:

This story was posted on 2014-05-18 00:19:37
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Happy Tale: Garnet, ridden by Kit Gustafson

2014-05-18 - Sugarfoot Farm Rescue, 860 Sparksville Road, Columbia, KY - Photo by Peg Schaeffer.
Garnet of Fairy Tales do come true
This is a photo of "Garnet" being ridden by my friend, Kit Gustafson. - Peg Schaeffer
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