Sunday, July 26, 2015

Eiii yi yi

Cappuccino reared up & flipped over on me about two weeks ago and I broke my left little finger. I thought it was nbd until the orthopedic surgeon called and said she wanted to see me asap. I really wanted to avoid surgery (holy long recovery batman) and so we cast the hand and waited a week.

the night of - waiting in urgent care
 I re-injured my back in the fall and they x-rayed it at urgent care which was a very painful process - I couldn't lay flat because of how inflamed it was. I was worried but thankfully the x-rays returned showing no skeletal injury. Yay!
plz no surgery dr!

Holy hannah one week later & it's UGLY
 After waiting a week and re-checking the hand, I thankfully don't need surgery on the little finger and have been re-cast in a new, more purple cast.
ahahahahahahahaha previous cast tan (we also picked this color hoping it'd hide the dirt)
I share all this primarily because I'm finding typing exceedingly difficult and so if/when I post for the next few weeks it'll be terse.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

The thing about breeches

Is that the ones I hate the most but are still sort of functional so I wear them despite sort of loathing them ... You all know the ones I'm describing. Those are the breeches that last forever despite as much abuse as I can pile on them. I'm looking at you, tuffrider pullons and purple Harry halls.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Not riding

Last Friday I fell off of this goose and really hurt my back. We came through a one stride and she hail-mary-bounced it and instead of assuming that the distance was bad, I rode through it underpowered and she rolled her shoulder out and ditched me. I went splat.

I got on Jr on Monday for about three minutes to show a kid what I meant by holding her outside elbow back to catch his drifting shoulder, I schooled Kat Tuesday, and I jumped Tango Wednesday. Things were looking up. Then last night I went to go see a movie and something about the weird recliner couches the theater has exacerbated my back pain to a nearly crippling level.

Hobbling about the arena while shouting about heels down and please look where you're going to the campers - it's shocking how hungry I was to be riding and it's seriously been like 24 hours. It's not so bad when I'm able to ride and plan for days off for myself, but it sucks when it feels forced.

Cappuccino has been sent into ground manners/spookbusting boot camp, and I have a question for my readers. I cannot get her to accept a treat from me. I've tried various commercial treats, sugar cubes, carrots, apples, etc, but she won't take a treat from my hand. I can get a bit in her mouth, I can rub her head all over. She seems content, and if I physically stuff the sugar cube in her mouth (I don't know why I felt this was so important) she'll eat it happily and snuffle the floor looking for more.

What. Even. Advice?

E has been riding Kat for me and it's wonderful to see how well they're starting to work together - I never wanted Kat to be a one woman horse and I'm glad to see she's coming around already.

Tango has been doing some gridwork to help him rock back and use his body better - JM's partner (confusing because initials are also JM - maybe JMJ for jumping?) wants me to work over the smaller fences to help him find his feet, but I have the instinct that starting over larger fences and then making them smaller to see if he still remembers how the legs work would be more beneficial.

But in trainers I trust, plus I can't ride anyways because my back is hurting so much.

This has nothing to do with anything but I saw it on Facebook and thought it was funny so I'm sharing it with you.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

The GingerPony...

... is a Fjord x Arabian!

Peppertree Ranch - June edition

This time around we had two trailers, so that made hauling WAY easier! We took the GingerPony, Diva, Dart, and Indiana. Dart and Indiana are owned by the lovely M, and so one of my working students rode Indiana and M rode Dart.

Indiana continues to be a little awkward to ride sometimes - he holds his leads well when he's moving freely forward, but sometimes we'd like him to, you know... not charge around like a maniac. Correct lead or no. He's very brave over little fences, if a little careless with his legs. Straight lines are still a bit of a challenge. But he jumped everything C pointed him at and I couldn't be more proud of the two of them!

Diva decided she was a bit done as the day went on and so I got on her to school through the disobediences - resulting in a few pretty awkward shots:

But we pulled it together and she remembered what it means to actually move off your leg and carry herself.

Diva's rider did a phenomenal job for how sticky and difficult she was being - I was pretty shocked at how hard she was to ride when I got on, especially with how easy her rider was making it look! Very pleased with that, and I do have to remind myself that Diva is only 5...

GingerPony did great for her second show ever! No spookiness - there were a few refusals in the warm up but she just got better and better and turned into a total machine. We sort of alarmed her when a fence that previously wasn't an oxer turned into one and she refused it, but I guess that tells us what we're working on in the next few weeks!

M and Dart are a well-matched pair with a lot of training behind them, and it was a total pleasure to talk her through her courses and watch them go play together.

All in all it was a great learning experience for all my riders and I can't wait for the next one!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Happy Bars Ranch 100 Day Training Challenge

I entered sort of on a whim - more of a "I wonder if I can get into this" than anything else.
Some of the horses and ponies are rescues. The sizes range from about 12+ hands to about 14.2 hands. Each horse and pony will get an initial score from its level of handling and training level. All are halter broke but that is about as far as some are!!!!! A couple were abused so they of course need the most work but they will come with bonus points so all can be an even opportunity in scoring at the end. The day of the finale there will be several judges judging the ground manners, leading at various speeds, everyday grooming, clipping, handling the hooves, loading in and out of a trailer, lunging and saddling. Then there will be arena work and then a trail challenge. Most of the horses and ponies will be offered for sale at the finale with the trainer having the first option to purchase. The price will be set prior to training as to be fair. Some of the horses and ponies are registered and the ages are from about 2 1/2 to about 12. This is a great place to look for a horse or pony without obligation if you are looking to buy because you can watch them perform under pressure. Its a great place if you are a trainer prove how capable you are as well. Any one who is interested in either participating please email me a letter stating your reasons for wanting to enter the challenge and your experiences with horses.
I got the call back, as well as permission to select one of the abused ones if I'd like the extra challenge.

Of course I said yes to that!

I drove up there on Friday to pick her up, and was given the option between two mares: 

12yrs old, previously started under saddle

6yrs old, absolutely skittish, 100% mystery
 I picked up the second mare for a variety of reasons, but mostly because she seemed a LOT smarter and more interested in being my friend, she just was scared of me and the way I moved.

We got her home without too terrible much trouble (I mean what's 45 minutes putting a horse in and out and in and out and in and out of a trailer at 10pm with a two hour drive ahead of us?). 

She accepted a lot of love on Saturday, standing quietly in the arena while I taught a jumping lesson around her, and enjoying plenty of scratches from the kids. 

She did let me get on her without too much trouble, which makes me think that she has been worked with some before.

When I'm mounting a horse for the first time I generally like to do it bareback because there's fewer things to get stuck in. I chose to get on her right away so that she could learn that this new place has totally different rules than her old home - I'm not out there to ride her around and steer her right off the bat, just get up there and sit for a few minutes and call it a day.

Saddles are N B D!

And then today I hacked her mane off because it made her look like a Gertrude.

There was a raging, multi-day debate over what to name her: Mocha, Nala, Fawn, Khaleesi, etc were all suggested and defended. But we settled on Cappuccino in the end.

Here's to one heck of an adventure!