Sunday, March 27, 2011

Nothing much of consequence


So, I'm at work, bored, actually getting a lot of calls, but they are short and quick, with time inbetween to do whatever... and I'm bored!

I'm riding little mare Callie a couple times a week. We had a good "discussion" on the lunge yesterday, she's AWESOME about up transitions, walk-trot, trot-canter, awesome. Down transitions? Huh? What are those?? When I become a little more insistent upon her listening and obeying, she slams on the brakes and turns and stares me down and then tries to bolt the other direction.

Uhhh... I don't think so!

So we schooled transitions on the lunge and were able to end on a really good note =), walk-halt still need a tad bit more work, but they did really improve.

Undersaddle she is such a busy body! I see now why she didn't do well out on Cross Country! If you let her go more than 4-5 strides without some sort of half-halt, transition, or change in direction, her attention is gone. She's off thinking about the trees, or that bird over there, in general NOT paying attention to you... she definitely keeps you on your toes! I like it. When you ride her how she asks, she really goes quite nicely.

Now I just need to see about getting a jump or two set up!!


meh, well this only killed about 15 minutes, little over an hour to go at work... pooey, oh well, I still got a blog in!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Oh mare...


I had forgotten how "fun" mares can be!! Ah but I love them.

A couple days ago I didn't have much time, so I decided to just stop by to groom Callie, as she is shedding in great gobs of hair! Holy moly!! Well, I just wandered out to the paddock with the shedding blade. All was going well until the other horses decided to mob me, and Callie started to get agitated as I was trying to get her to stand still but she wanted nothing to do with the other horses (she's bottom rung on the authority ladder). As I was trying to get hair off her bum she finally had enough and leapt away, letting out a not-so-well-aimed kick right at me!!! Oh. no. you. don't.

That landed her a prompt round pen session about who is alpha "mare" and I very clearly told her that kicking at me is NOT ok. She did pretty good by the end, but while she did show submission, it wasn't truly what I wanted, as she was still a little like "i don't have to" when I tried to get her to yield her hind-end. She did it, but not truly in willing submission. So, got a little authority thing to sort out and then I think we'll be golden. Just one of those little things that needs to be established with any horse.

Two days later I took her out for a ride, I lunged her first as this was the first time I had decided to ride her in the large outdoor arena, which is right next to a busy road and can be a LOT distracting for some horses. I put her on the lunge and she instantly flipped into an AHHHHH I'M IN TROUBLE FOR KICKING mode from the round pen  the other day, even though she had really settled by the end that day... silly mare. So I just let her do what she wanted, let her do her thing while I stood there patiently, she ran a bit, then settled down for me to ride her.

We worked a lot of transitions, I probably only rode her for 15 minutes, but I figured out pretty quick that her mind was in typical TB mode, busy busy busybusyBUSY. She was paying attention to anything and everything but me, and just felt very squirrely and not truly giving her back. So we did transitions, transitions, and more transitions. I don't think I went more than 20 meters in any one gait. walk-trot-walk-trot-walk-halt-walk-trot-canter-trot-walk-trot-walk-trot-canter-trot and so on. Her head was all over the place, so I focused on doing each transition from the leg and seat only and keeping her soft on the bit, instead of flinging her head. I finished up the ride with two great 20m canter circles, one is each direction, the last one she really relaxed, gave her back, and truly went on the bit. GOOD GIRL! I ended on that note :D

Haven't gotten out to ride her again since, I'm really hoping to do so today, we'll see *crosses fingers*. We finally got her cribbing collar adjusted so that she's not cribbing anymore, which makes me happy. And she's been moved to her own paddock so that she can have as much hay and goodies as she wants so she should really start to put on the lbs here soon.

I think that's all for now, as long as the wind isn't blowing a million miles and hour the weather is really gorgeous so far this year, thought I wouldn't mind a couple rain showers, it's going to be a very dry summer if we don't get some moisture soon.

Sunday, March 13, 2011



My NEW horse!!!! As in, legally mine!!
Unfortunately I don't have any pictures at this point in time as he (or she) isn't even born yet! Actually... isn't even conceived yet if you want to get technical. The long and short of it is, I'm purchasing a foal in utero to be my new Eventing prospect. If all goes as planned, it will be an upper level horse!

I was thinking originally I'd wait until the mare was actually BRED, but as the news got spilled elsewhere online, I figured, aaaahh what the heck, I'll post it here as well. :)

Momma is a lovely Dutch Warmblood mare, standing 16 1/2hh high, is wide as a tank (which is in part to being a brood mare, but still, doesn't bode well for baby fitting into my jumping saddle, oh my...), and has LOTS of GO! She also has done very in the hunters and ammy jumpers.
 Daddy is a Holsteiner, 16.3hh tall, competing Grand Prix show jumping at the moment, and is that beautiful blood red bay color I just loooooove. He's also a nice n tight jumper and has a very forward way of going.

 This baby will be registered as a Dutch Warmblood, and considering how much thoroughbred blood it'll have, should be an excellent Upper Level Eventing prospect!!! I am SOOO excited!! :D To say I'm impaitent would be an understatement. We missed the mare's heat this month, so mid April she should be bred *crosses fingers* I'm counting the days until she comes back into heat so she can be covered let alone until she actually foals in a year, gaaaah I'm never gonna last that long!

On the bright side, it sounds like I won't be without a ride at least for awhile. In addition to having Callie to ride for a few months, another boarder at my barn has said I'm more than welcome to ride her mare, a 21 year old TB mare who is actually rather skilled in dressage. She's horribly out of shape and pretty stiff, but could be a fun summer project. In exchange for getting to ride her I'll give the owner a few lessons here and there.

Well, I think that's it for now, time to start a countdown until baby is here. And time to start thinking of names. They gotta start with an H... hmmm

And one more picture of Daddy, cuz I think he's a hunk ;)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Yes, you must trot


I rode Callie at my barn for the first time yesterday. It wasn't a terribly long ride, but it was a start!

I lunged her first, and she looked a tad looser than the day before, I rather like her trot, it has a lot of natural elasticity to it. Once she gets fit and really loosens up I can see it being pretty nice. I then got on her and did some bending back and forth, she's actually rather supple laterally, I was a little surprised, it's the longitudinal suppleness and fitness that she's lacking at the moment.

Then I asked for the trot. This is how it went:

Me: Callie, please trot
Callie: no....
Me: Callie, trot.
Callie: No.
Me: Trot, now!
Callie: *puts ears back and slows down* NO!
Me: *change in tactic* Ok, do a walking turn on the forehand, get that hind end moving up under you, now GO trot!
Callie: noo---wait, oh. ok...

She is not a mare who will take any sort of heel cue, no matter how small. She wants squeezes and seat/upper leg cues. So went spent the next 5-10 mins doing walk-trot-walk-trot and so on until she quietly picked up the trot without any objection. I then called it good. :)

Other than that, she was great, she doesn't have a spook in her, the soccer ball in the middle of the arena that I completely forgot about until she politely stepped over it on the lunge-- it didn't phase her. Compared to Pie, she's downright lazy! I don't think I'd really realized how hot Pie actually is, I was riding Buddy boy for a long time and he was more sensitive than Pie so I had labeled Pie "lazy", lol, oh how wrong I was! It's been sooo long since I'd ridden those little lazy ponies that I'd forgotten what it's like, now I get on Callie and it's a completelly different feel. I'm sure though that she'll perk up considerably once she builds some muscle.

Today is looking to be warm (relatively), sunny, and windy... good day for a ride?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Oh my, that's a mane!


Callie is starting to settle in, she got turned out with the gang on Sunday and all went relatively well. The little hackney pony was being his normally tiny studly self, which is hilarious, he thinks he's the top dog and yet he's the smallest horse!! Callie for now is at the bottom of the chain, but I think she'll work her way up. She seems a little stressed about the move, not being around her buddies and in a new and strange place. I'm trying to show her that I'm the cookie lady and happy to give her loves and grooming. However, she's definitely not as food oriented as Pie is so we'll see how it goes.

As for Pie, he has settled in very nicely at the pasture, and has VERY quickly established himself as head-hancho over the two little Arab mares. No more squealing or shenanigans from the mares, they are happy to touch noses with Pie now without raising a fuss, but don't they dare try and take a bite of his food! Other than that, Pie looks happy and content. I'm not terribly worried about him :)

But... Callie's mane, now that's another story!
In need of some serious TLC
I'm going to try to pull just a little bit here and there, I did a tiny bit last night, while the hair came out fairly easily she told me pretty quick she wasn't a fan of having that done. So it's going to be a slow work in progress, I don't want her to think I'm the mean-hair-yanking-goblin! And yes, she doesn't have much of a topline, hopefully that will change soon.
Telling me what she thinks of mane pulling
She is a sweetie though, really, she's got a kind look to her eye that I really like. She just doesn't know who I am yet! Even though I only have her for a few months, we'll see where we can get.

I did put her on the lunge last night to see how she'd go. She is pretty stiff from lack of work and lack of muscle tone as she's a tad underweight at the moment. But I was able to get her to track up at both the walk and trot, and she looks like she can have some nice gaits when in shape. Her canter looks smooth, as is her trot. If it'll warm up any today I'm going to try and ride her for about 10 minutes in addition to the lunging. It's currently only 20* out... BRRR!!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

"New" mare is here


Successfully swapped horses yesterday!

And for the next few months at least I'll have a little thoroughbred mare named Callie to play with. She's cute, little, in horrible need of a haircut, and can jump!! YAY

Her owner brought her over and she got off the trailer just fine, we put her into the arena which shares the fenceline with the main turnout where the herd lives. She immediatly wandered down there to say hi, and all the horses came over. She stood there, just stood there, not making a fuss, while all the other horses squealed and make a fuss... namely the little hackney pony, he's the smalled horse out there but thinks he is the biggest LOL!

Then we got Pie and went to load him up to go to the pasture, and I was fully prepared with "motivation" and all expecting him to through a fuss about getting into the trailer.... Instead he practically dragged me into the trailer before we could even fully open the divider door!! Way to make a liar of me.

But then he gave me a near heart attack, of course per usual he was pawing in the trailer, being a turd. All of a sudden I hear a big BANG and the trailer shakes and then all is still.... I jump up and peek in, I seem him standing straddle legged behind and oh my he has his front foot in the hay net!!!! Somehow he had gotten it waaaay up high and through the net, which was now wrapped around his knee holding it up. Visions of severed tendons danced through my head as we both leapt into the trailer. I managed to push his leg up high enough to give some slack to the net and Callie's owner grabbed my pocket knife out of my back pocket and cut him free. He was very happy to have his foot back and I was very happy to see that short of a few loose hairs he was none the worse for wear. We cut the net down (as he had pulled the knot so tight it was untieable) and decided to go sans hay for him. There is a reason I prefer hay bags over nets, yikes!!

Aside from that, the rest of the day went fairly drama free. We introduced Pie to his new stable mates, Pie couldn't have cared less... he was much more interested in the hay on the ground. Whereas his two new buddies, these cute little arab mares who are veeerry much arabians, were incredibly curious in him but refused to approach him. They wanted him to come after them but he refused to do so and it was driving them crazy. And if he DID so much as look at them they'd squeal, leap in the air, and run off head and tail in the air. The look on Pie's face was priceless LOL, he thought they were NUTS!!

I got back to check on Callie and to bring her in for the night, she was a little nervous about being in the barn and in the stall by herself, the walls are fairly high so she can't really see the other horses, but I think in a night or two she'll settle down just fine. I'll be going out this evening to see and play with her. Maybe if I have time I'll ride her, we'll see!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Not Thrilled...


... at all.

First, I'm sure everybody in the eventing world has heard about the two, and only two, people selected by the USEF for the short list for the Chef d'Equipe/Technical Advisor position for the US Eventing Team.
Those two people are David O'Conner and Leslie Law. Any guesses on who is going to get the position? Can anybody say politics? I was reeeaaaaally hoping that Jimmy Wofford would get the position, or at least get to the short list! I mean, seriously??? Ugh. I'm not saying that David or Leslie can't properly run our eventing program, but I just think Jim and his way of approaching things would reeaaally put a new spin on the eventing program. Ah well, I didn't do the interviews or anything... but still. I don't understand why one wouldn't leave Jimmy off the short list.

The other thing I'm not thrilled about: I can't drive. For awhile. In short, medical reasons. What's ironic is that, while going home after learning this from the Dr. I get a call from someone sounding really serious about buying my pickup. Ha, guess it's meant to be! On the bright side, I am going to be riding my bike everywhere, and going to get super fit!

And lastly, In other news, I am currently attempting to come up with some good names starting with H. Haven't thought of or found anything I like, I do have time, so I'm not worried. However... I do know that I will NOT be using "Hydes R Us"

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Big changes ahead!!


And I'm ridiculously excited!!!

I am still getting that little mare, Callie, to lease, she will be coming this Saturday. I'll have her for a few months at my barn before she goes home, should be fun to have a horse to ride regularly for at least a little!

But, the big changes, well, I think I'll keep my mouth shut for a little longer until it's finalized here in a month or two... but in short, I'm going to getting about as close to my dream horse as possible. Pie will be going to a loving retirement home where he'll be ridden lightly and just pampered, it'll be perfect for him. I want to be able to run and jump and he just doesn't fit that bill anymore unfortunately. I love him to little bitty Pie pieces, and I wish I could hang onto him because he is so wonderful, but I cannot afford both him and a new horse, at least not at this point in my life.

I'll stop there, when everything is down in writing I'll spill the beans wide open, but, all I can say is... I'm having a VERY hard time not saying anything more!!! SO excited!