Thursday, January 23, 2014

Rode Bliss down turnrows.  Lots of long trotting, softening serps on way back home.  Also tried on her new cooler. . .it's a bit big for the short girl ;).

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

I snuck in a quick ride during my conference period today.  Lots of serpentines and circles working on a soft neck and rib.

Also talked to trainer who has Scout today. . .apparently she has laid down on him several times when he backs her up.  She has done this to me twice, my assumption was that she is lazy and it was an odd quirk of hers.  It is not a tantrum and very undramatic, she just simply folds.

It appears that this strange quirk may instead be one of several symptoms of mild EPM.  So it looks as though I will be going to pick her up this weekend :(.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

It was 35 degrees today but no wind so it was not too cold to ride.  I know that this next week will be touch and go for me as far as time, with a game tomorrow, school starting back Tuesday, and our home basketball tournament on Thurs, Fri, and Sat.  I'm going to try to sneak some time during my conference period but will have to see how it all works out.  Anyway, though it was a bit chilly, I needed to ride while I knew I could.

I rode Bliss out again today.  I'm not sure if it was the cool weather or my letting her choose her pace yesterday, but she was a bit hot today.  We started at a walk to warm up a bit, then I asked her for a trot.  From the get-go she wanted to move from trot to lope.  I pulled her into a one-rein stop when she sped up to lope, let her sit, and then asked for her to walk off.  She wanted to trot instead of walk, lope instead of trot.  We did a few hundred one rein stops (it felt like) and lots of lateral flexion while we were stopped.

She did eventually chill out and trot nicely, however, when I finally asked her to lope off she charged away.  I changed tactics and decided to let her blow the steam off and guided her around the turns between fields.  She flew around for quite a while.  When I could feel that she was wanting to slow to a trot I pushed her on a little further in the lope until it was my idea to slow to a walk.  By this time both she and I were puffing quite a bit.

We walked for a while to catch our breath and then turned towards home.  I asked for walk-trot transitions on the way home which she gave nicely, not wanting to lope off from the trot anymore.  We cooled down at a walk for about 20 minutes.

Of course I question whether I should have continued with the one-rein stops when she was chargey at the lope or if I did right by letting her go but then pushing her past the point that she wanted to stop.  I guess I'll find out when I ride her out next. . . .

Friday, January 3, 2014

Woke up today to find a small pond in my horse pen.  I left the water running in the horse tank all.night.long.  Argh!!

When I went to catch Bliss the smart pony utilized the new body of water to her advantage, calmly walking directly into the center of it and pretending to get a drink from the puddle.  All the while knowing that I wasn't going to slosh around in the mud after her.  The little turkey.

I did eventually catch her at the back of the pen.  For fun I walked her to a low spot and hopped on bareback (there are benefits to having short cowponies).  She was a little flummoxed at first, seeing as how this was our maiden voyage bareback.  She flicked her ears and trotted some, I flipped the lead rope from one side to the other to pretend that I had some sort of control.  When she neared the pond I had visions of her dumping me in the mud.  Smart pony that she is, I would not put it past her.

I saddled her and let her soak (aka left her standing tied) while I ran to town to take care of some errands.  I rode her out today down the turn-rows by herself.  This being the third time, I think, for us to ride out alone.  Bliss is a fantastically sensible and brave filly.  She proves time after time just how great her mind really is and she did so again today.  My plan was to be a passenger today.  Guide her as necessary but to stay out of her way for the most part and let her pick the speed.

She did quite a bit of long trotting (which is perfect and what I would have chosen myself, had I been making the speed decisions).  Her ears were up and her body relaxed.  She loped at times and when I needed to bring her down to a walk in order to cross a road she was right with me.  I hummed (signal for slowing down) and she obliged.

One of the fields runs behind the Wal-Mart.  The cotton stems left from harvest have snagged hundreds of stray plastic WM sacks resulting in a flapping Booger Graveyard.  Not for Bliss though, she trotted right through the pony-eaters not changing speeds or direction, simply lowering her head for a closer look.

When we were 1/2 mile from home I asked her to slow to a walk for a cool down.  She did so happily and did not break gait once.  I am so very happy with my filly :).

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Though I haven't posted, a lot has happened.  I took Scout to the trainer and left her there.  I had something akin to "buyer's remorse" as I pulled away.  I struggle with entrusting the care of my animals to others.  Paranoid, overprotective, control-freak.  All of those.

Bliss and I (and my Leo Trio) have been at Bri and Clay's since Monday. Bliss experienced a hot walker for the first time, worked cattle, and got a much needed winter bath with heated water.  It was a great week with good friends, dogs, and horses.


The Peanut Gallery: Tango, Journey, Sinch, Venture.

Bri's Shandy and Bliss

Journey, Venture, Tango, Spur and Sinch.  Clay's Patches in the back 

Bliss' derriere.