Leanna Arcement is being grafted into the Cajun world, and she’s learning the culture well. The two-time Cajun Rodeo Association Breakaway Champion grew up in […]
Written by: Siri Stevens< Back to Articles
Tina Deshotels is a barrel racer in the Louisiana High School Rodeo Association. The eighteen year old cowgirl, who lives in Mamou, La., is in her third year of high school rodeo.
She rides a thirteen year old bay gelding named Dennis the Menace, whose name fits him well. “He’s very high maintenance,” Tina says. “We make plenty of trips to the vet, chiropractor, and the dentist.” Menace, as he is nicknamed, also loves company. “He’s very much a people horse,” she says. “He’s very cuddly and in everybody’s business. He’s always hanging around.”
The senior in high school is homeschooled, and dispels the rumor that home schooling is easy. “You don’t get to do it in your pajamas like everybody thinks.” The best part of homeschooling is that she can finish early and ride. The worst part of homeschooling is the self-discipline, “to sit down and do your work.” But being self-disciplined is beneficial, she believes. Homeschool, she believes, also helps a person mature faster. “You learn a lot more around your parents than you do in school.” She’s learned how to change a blown-out tire, for example. “You learn to grow up a little bit more. You have to be mature about it.”
In school, her favorite subject is math, and she has enjoyed Bible class, where the class has studied not just the Bible but personal finance. When her school day is over, Tina rides and works for her dad. Her dad has a real estate business and a septic tank business, so she answers the phone, does computer work, writes receipts, and runs errands.
Her earnings go towards payments on the Hummer H3 that she bought last summer. Even though the Hummer is new to her, she’s thinking about replacing it with a truck. The Hummer “isn’t too good on gas, not at all,” she admits, and the truck would be useful for hauling her horse.
Tina has two older brothers, Alec, 26, and Robbie, 24, and an older sister, Valli, who is 21. She also has two nephews, Eli and Cy, who are both two years old, and love their Aunt Tina, or “Nana,” as they call her. She loves to play with them and read books to them.
After high school, she hopes to attend college and major in a business related field. She may not college rodeo but will focus on her studies. Tina will compete in local open barrel racings, and someday, wants to join the Women’s Pro Rodeo Association to rodeo professionally. She is the daughter of Luke and Jonell Deshotels.