Howdy Chuckwagon Friends
Every day’s a great day when you can get up and breathe! So many times, one can take life for granted. When our health is in check and things are going smooth we don’t realize how many others have issues day to day, and just make it by with no complaining.
Today, we had a group of families come by called the Starlight Foundation.
Starlight Children’s Foundation partners with experts to improve the life and health of kids and families around the world.
For over 23 years, Starlight Children’s Foundation has been transforming the lives of Canadian children who live with serious illness and their families. What makes us unique is that we are there for the entire journey—from the emergency room to recovery.
While in-hospital, Starlight provides distraction, entertainment and relief from the stress and boredom of hospitalization.
When out-of-hospital, Starlight children benefit from our ‘Escapes’ and ‘Wishes’ programs— giving them an opportunity to leave the ‘sick’ behind, create special family memories and return home with a renewed sense of strength and hope.
Starlight is looking to expand to more hospitals and in more communities across Canada. The need is tremendous—and it is only with the generous support of our donors and partners that we will be able to reach and impact these special children, who so greatly benefit from our programs.
The smiles on the faces of these families today were very touching. They so much appreciated to be getting out to experience a little bit of our life in the barns. I commend each and every family in this program. They are my heroes of today.
Our shed row is decked out with flags and banners with many sponsors that have come out to support us. The Mavericks are amazing guys that love to have fun and work hard to support so many charities along the way. We give a huge shout out to them for believing in Rick, Sue and Team 23! I’m loving also the live flowers provided to me by my friend Mary-Lynn (aka Red Neck Barbie) from Bruces’s Tru Value Hardware in Ponoka that don the entry way and hang in the barn. I hope I can keep them alive for the full 10 tens. I’ve been watering them every day.
TEAM 23 loves to have fun and it wouldn’t be right if we didn’t get a group shot for Stampede 2016!
From noon till 4, the barns are quiet, quiet, quiet. Many are sleeping, others are doing errands. The barns don’t have much movement by people and horses alike. The horses rest very well in the barns with big fans going, keeping them comfortable with cool air movement all around. They get treated royally.
Tonight before the races, Rick had a live Facebook interview with WPCA personal Brian and Tammy. They asked many questions about Chuckwagon Races and our Horses. If you would like to see it, just look up World Professional Chuckwagon Association on Facebook.
So, tonight’s heat 4, which was the one Rick was in on barrel 1, didn’t play out quite the way we had envisioned. The horses started pretty good, went around the top barrel, but didn’t quite make it around the bottom. . Instead, the barrel got ran over, and somehow it tipped the Chuckwagon, spilling Rick out onto the dirt and the outfit ran off. Our outrider David Bensmiller was able to catch up to the runaway team and get them woed up by the 3rd turn. Once the dust settled, my hubby was fine, and his main concern was our horses. We caught up with them, and found out that they were perfectly fine as well. All of them were vet checked and given a thumbs up.
As I sit and write in the quietness of my Travelin Trailer, so many emotions pass through me. First off, I Love my husband Rick very much. When we first met, he won me over by his teasing personality. He loves to have fun. I married into his family of Chuckwagon Life on the road. I must say we have had quite the wonderful journey these past 32 years, and would not take back anything for the world. We have laughed, cried, sang, cheered, fought, been quiet, disagreed,forgiven, bonded, and loved along the way. I have seen him hurt other times before during his race career. Tonight’s incident was frightening for all to have watched. When the dust settled, Rick was fine. No injuries. The horses, were fine. No injures. We are very thankful for this. At the end of the day, it is what it is. Rick has been living his dream, racing around the track with many beautiful powerful thoroughbreds to which we call family. My heart hurts for my husband and I quietly shed tears for him, because I know that our dream to capture the Calgary Stampede title has been diminished once again. Does this title really matter in the big scheme of things at the end of the day? No not really. And we both agree on this. What really matters is the kids we will meet tomorrow when we go up to the local Children’s Hospital and meet the young souls there, that struggle day to day with health issues and never complain. That is what really matters in the big scheme of things today.
So we urge you to hug your kids, your grand-kids and family and enjoy them each and every day.
We are the hub, and the kids are the spokes, keeping us all connected in this wheel of life.
From the Travelin Trailer
Sue, with Rick and Team 23
P.S. You never know how STRONG you are until being STRONG is the only choice you have.