A Horse is a Horse

A Horse is a Horse

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Woohoo for winning stuff!

First off, go enter a very cool contest on a very cool blog :)


and another awesome contest!


Hacked by my lonesome (with the hubby and screaming, running toddler) on Monday. Lesson Tuesday was canceled, so I had a lesson this morning... more later hard to blog chasing a baby, lol

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

All Smiles :)

Yesterday was nasty hot (like 102F) when I got to the barn. I tacked up Magic really slowly and just putzed him around the indoor arena. It didn't feel as bad in there, so i made him give me two laps of decent trot, then gave him two laps of at least moderately forward walk (not our strong suit). Did one good lap at a canter to the Left, then had to do 2 to the right to get a decent speed/frame, then cooled off. Got to watch Karley ride Henry bareback, good boy. 

Opted for a lesson this morning. before the threat of triple digits. Got to the barn early despite inching thru the morning commute. Dragged Magic up to the barn, grooming was easy since I had left him shiny last night. Tacked him up and... waited.... Trainer arrived a little late, then needed to clip another horse for upcoming show, so I did a quick turn out to get a few bucks out and got on. I did plenty of laps of posting trot and sitting trot while my trainer was in and out. 

There were lots of other people in and out at this point, making it interesting to work. The kids brought their pony in and set up a cross rail in the indoor. We did canter work each way, working on achieving a good gallop down the long sides, and collecting on the short side. Not pretty but eventually met my trainer's standards. By this point there was a fair amount of traffic, and after putting up the jump she decided we would go down to the outdoor (yay!). 

We went down and did a few laps at a canter to get their brains back to work, and after a huge trip near fall to his forelegs, Magic collected himself and we trotted a little wall. Then our trainer gave the girl on the pony a decent little course. After a few runaway lead changes, she got it, and my trainer turned to me and said, "ok you do the same". I must of sucked air a little louder then I realized because she told me to just relax and point him where I want to go. Oh yeah, I ride a packer... So I FINALLY  jumped my first full course, at least since I have been back to riding post-baby. I've done lines, and little combos, but never really full courses, and in my little chicken brain, this was HUGE. (My trainer lovingly calls me, not just a weenie, but super weenie).

sorry- not a Paint artist, especially on a touch pad

It was basically (1)baby wall, right (insert rough lead change) to (2) a wall and (3)x-rail (with a vertical pole thru it?) in a line, around right to a different (4) x-rail, around left to a (5) gate. Magic doesn't lead change that way so that brought about a quick simple change, then I went long to the gate... oops. Then we had to do the x-rail to gate again and he landed on the right lead but still stopped to trot ...oops... then we chipped in at the gate..., hmm... this eyeing the distance thing is hard... After the pony took another run, I did the whole course again. By this point I'm pretty sure I had been in the saddle for at least 1 1/2hrs so I was huffing and puffing, but just kept chanting 1-2-1-2-1-2 RELAX, and it worked. I wish I had video of it to watch (and entertain my few readers). 

new fly mask for a grumpy old man

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Ups and Downs

Monday had another great ride. Magic clearly was still feeling pretty happy over his week of light work, and even though it was fairly warm, he was nice and forward. Its nice to not get nervous but happy with a more forward movement again. I popped him into the round pen and got all sorts of wild goofiness from him, without having to run around like crazy myself. 

 After he got his crazy out, we just did some nice WTC work with lots of trot-canter-walk-canter, transitions. I tried to mix it up since he assumes we are doing the normal lesson progression of work. It was nice having the arena to just Karley and I, less chance of running into anyone ;)

We only had one spook when the eventing trainer walked into her side of the barn, all backlit and hair flowing.. apparently revealing the devil incarnate to Magic, lol. Unfortunately I was adjusting my constantly-shifting-home stirrups and nearly got left in the air where Magic had been.

Other then that, just a nice ride. Not as into the corners, etc as I'm sure we could have been, but hey, not every ride has to be about fixing everything.

 Tuesday- Lessons were back. It was HOT. We all were sweating just tacking up. We meandered down to the dusty outdoor and began to sweat our way through our paces. L and I were on before Karley, so we had to do lots of sitting trot/ posting trot laps. Thank god we got lots of water breaks. We worked on lengthening and shortening our canter strides. Magic was back to his push push self, so it tool some work to get him to lengthen. He was ok to the Right, but we had a few big trips (i'm sure my eyes get huge every time). Then he was a super slug to the left. Finally on one lap I slowed down because I had a monster side cramp, and happened to look down at a horseshoe sitting nails up in front of us.... awesome. I had been talking up my chicken self about jumping the whole lesson, all the jumps were low, and I ended up having to sit out.... so is life lol. After L and Karley jumped like a champs we walked around the property to cool the boys out. Magic was goofy about being barefoot, any excuse to not work. Maybe I will get another lesson in, I need to get back over a jump, my confidence doesn't stretch over weeks of not jumping.

oh yeah, and horse shopping on a budget is a PITA. I'm not confident enough to do a total greenie (even though I dream about it), so there's not a lot in our area in my budget.... I'm actually getting tired of looking at horse ads lol.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Finally some good rides

Having barely been on a horse last week, I am soo feeling my hacks of the last two nights. Luckily, they were oddly good rides. I'd love to take credit and say my riding has improved that much, but realistically poor Magic beast was just happy because he had the week off from lessons, and his owner was gone, so he had been sitting around munching hay for days.

Oh yeah, rocking the Beatles tee, fancy I know
Monday I pulled a relatively clean beast out and got him all ready to roll. Decided at the last minute to throw him in the round pen, and was quickly rewarded with some impressive bronc bucks. Hey look, I learn, get the crazies out before the ride whenever possible. Hacked in the indoor with Karley, enjoying the shade since it was still pretty toasty in the late afternoon. After a little initial encouragement, Magic was a nice, forward horse. It felt splendid having him in front of my leg for once, like seriously, I had to slow his trot. Yeah that never happens unless there's a jump in front of us. We did lots of walk/canter and trot/canter transitions. He picked up his leads and started off cleanly like the packer he's supposed to be. (Why does he not do this when my trainers there)?!  Cooled him out, rinsed him off, even did a little sheath cleaning but decided to leave that for a major bath day.

Ramone dwarfing Magic
Tuesday Came out late tonight since there was no lesson. Basically had a repeat of last night but with E and L also in the ring. He was a little twitchy at the open scary side of the arena, but I gave him more to think about and drove him into the corner more and more until he decided it was easier to just move into the corner then fight, albeit we were no where near as collected and proper as we should have been and there was a few crow hops, but hey no melt downs and running so I'll take it. Did some up and down transitions again, with Mr I'm-suddenly-forward horse. Ok, so I am no longer afraid of more forward action, it was nice not flogging a horse to maintain action. Now put me on something Ramone sized and it may take me a bit to feel comfortable with a giant stride, but at least it sounds reasonable again.

Hopefully squeeze a ride in Friday, but its my long work week, so we will see.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Bright and Early

Felt horrible Tuesday night, then felt worse bailing on my lesson last minute, but as my husband put it, how good will I be if I'm sick.
Opted for an early morning lesson with Karley. Since I was actually up early, I got on the road early and to the barn before everyone arrived. Took my time getting Magic and getting us both ready, talking with the barn manager since she was grooming her massive beast.

Hey lady, I was eating breakfast...
We went down to the outdoor arena which had amazingly good footing compared to normal. We did plenty of two-pointing and posting trot since I had only ridden once in a week and apparently lose muscle tone like overnight these days. Another trainer had a girl jumping a course so we worked around her, and started trotting, then cantering a little wall/ vertical. plenty big for this chicken. and warm up for Karley ;) /i really worked on counting my pace out and telling myself to relax right before the jump, and feeling my legs sink into my heels, so even when he went a little long, I just floated with it. It felt awesome. J came down and trotted Trooper, the pony that I almost got over some decent jumps. He is going to rock the pony scene, he's taking right to jumping, did one crazy over jump that showed he has a lot of scope. Very cute.

Rinsed Magic off while grumpy tried his best to keep stepping on the hose, which kept blowing the nozzle off, leaving us both rinsed, argh. Trainer is gone next week so just hacking around. It will hopefully just be relaxing.


Please no more photos