Sunday, July 29, 2018

My Legs are Weak

Having some stubborn days with Curtis. Partly because my legs are weak. I get so worn out keeping him forward and trying to push him off my leg and I try to only use the dressage whip when he really ignores me. Partly because maybe I went too fast. Even though he was doing well maybe I should have taken a few more days working on legs before asking for contact and then doing it all trotting..... The good thing is I'm not that far along. And I've only been riding every other day or so which seems to keep him more willing to stop being lazy. I've stopped lunging before I ride too.

His feet are still tender as well, despite copious amounts of Keratex Hoof Hardener. The not having a farrier thing is getting old fast. And yea, I could technically trim myself and at least them all cleaned up. But Twister is really the only gentleman of the bunch when it comes to feet. Curtis is MUCH better than he used to be but I still wouldn't get under him by my self. And Rascal? Forget it.

On a good note, my dressage saddle came this week. I was pretty sure the girl said it had a MW tree in it but it's a wide and it actually fits Curtis really well. And it's incredibly comfortable. I don't feel like his girrafe-ness and stubborness is related to the new saddle either, because he was being a pain even before it came. He's just really let down..... I tried to canter for the first time yesterday and he trotted SUPER fast so matter what I did or how I asked, but would. not. canter. Wins races. Won't canter around for fun 2 years later. Whatever.

I need my person to be home for a couple hours one morning so I can get on Curtis and WTC him in the field with the Twister. I'd even go alone as long as someone is home. But when he's not home I ride when the little one sleeps and I don't want to fall off too far from the house ya know?

Twister and I are going to a hunter pace in 2 weeks so I'm riding him the days I don't ride Curtis. He feels like a frisky asshat who wants to drop me, but I can tell he's starting to be old. Sometimes at the trot but always at the canter he starts hacking like he's heavey then sounds like he's roaring. He works out of it in a couple minutes but I hate it. Probably I'll have to wet his hay this winter. He'll be 15 in March and that doesn't feel old to me. Especially when he gets so sassy under saddle.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Farrier Blues

My horses have need their feet done for 3 weeks. All have thrown their shoes and have chips from stomping. Curtis is doing ok-ish with Keratex Hoof Hardener but he's still takes a sore step every now an then. Rascal does ok other than the chips in his feet and I won't do anything more on Twister right now than hop on bareback and walk around. They're a mess.

And our usual guy has been a no call no show twice. And I think we need to find a new guy. Which I hate. Because even though it's hard to get our usual guy out here, he does an awesome job once you get him out here.

Wednesday night

Sore tootsies or not, I had the best ride on Curtis yesterday. There was weed eating going on, lots of loud, scary noises, which Rascal was being all stupid about with my 2 year old on him even though he usually never bats an eye. And Curtis didn't even look in the direction of the scary. I wish I had pics, because he was so good.

Also Wednesday

And I bought a dressage saddle. Should be here next week. Unfortunately, it's supposed to rain for days and days starting tonight so I'll be lucky to have dry ground to ride in it on.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

1 Week In

Curtis has only had 1 day off since I got on him last Saturday. He's been great. Half the time I don't even lunge him anymore. We even led SJ around on him all over the property. Where he's never been ridden before. Past things that Twister is still spooking at.

she's been wanting to do this for months

But as mellow as he's been *knock on wood* he still has a lot of things to learn.
-stand still when I mount up
-Moving off my leg
-making circles that aren't a quarter mile in diameter
-paying attention and not worrying when your buddies who are also outside are not standing right on the fence  watching.

He does have fantastic brakes. And halts square. So the hard part is basically done right??

The last 2 nights because of the sore tootsies (farrier on Monday *fingers crosses*) I lunged him lightly with loose side reins to encourage stretching down and out. And then I got on him with a dressage whip and used it to help him stop being deaf to my leg. Today I added little bitty cones and taught him to turn around them. I try to keep my reins relaxed and use a lot of leg.

2 for $1 at the dollar tree
going back for more...
dressage letters!
I was pretty proud of him when after only a few times around the cones he knew to turn around him. I could make him a barrel horse. Haha jk. After doing each cone alone, I used the cones like corners in an arena. He picked up on what the job was right away and for the first time stopped trying to cut the space in half.

This was all at the walk by the way. As soon as he has shoes we can do this at the trot and see if we can actually make some decent corners and learn to bend around my leg into them and and make some nice circles. And he's so happy to be back in work.

Monday, July 9, 2018

Riding Curtis!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday afternoon my person got home for break early and it was a perfect gorgeous day for riding. In fact SJ and I had already been riding and I lunged Curtis. But I ran out and for the first time since he was a baby, I got on Curtis. Remember, he's been on layup for over a year and a half and has been doing ground work irregularly for 2 months. Saturday I got on in the stall and rode off and he was great.

I basically haven't been able to stop smiling about it. He has a big bouncy trot and naturally carries himself up hill. I was only on him for like 10-15 mins but he was great.

I've been on him every day so far, making today Day 3. He needs to learn to move off my leg better. He's a bit deaf to it. Which surprises me because my person exercised him and he rides off his leg and even gallops long so he can use his legs to ask for leads etc. He accepts bit contact pretty well though, although after I ask for a walk he wants to rip the reins out of my hands. But it's just bad habits and little things we can work on.

17 hands of handsome

I'm not getting my hopes up but I'd love to take him to the schooling dressage show in November. I have 4 months so as long as I don't slack off and go to a lesson or 2 off farm I might just be able to go without looking like an unorganized idiot.

throw back to his 1st ride ever, almost 5 years

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Schooling Shows!?

I live 40 mins from the horse capitol of the Untied States and I legit cannot find any open shows around here! I'd have to drive 1.5 or more!!!! I have scoured the internet and Facebook groups trying to find a flipping show that won't cost $300 or I won't have to drive 2 hours.

What I want is to do leadline with SJ and to also ride a dressage test or even do open hunter classes or something. Even if it's just on the flat (considering I've been over a jump all of 4x in the last 8 months.....) I can find nothing that has both. So maybe leadline will have to wait for next summer. Because I am NOT hauling horses all over hells half acre for SJ to spend 5 mins in the saddle.

cutest little lead-liner everrrr

My country fair: not even 4h horse shows, let alone open shows. It's so annoying!!!!!!

I found a schooling dressage show in November that maybe just maybe I could even have Curtis ready for. It's at a very nice farm where I've done a MT before. Just shy of an hour away. No leadline. But I could do Intro test A B or C or Training level 1. He's been on a lungeline for almost 2 months. It's time to get on his ass. Even though he's become an asshole all of the sudden.

I could even take Twister. I could ride (badly) any test on him............

Only the show IS in November. So it could either be 50* and gorgeous or be 30* and pissing rain........ so that's always a fun gamble!

Anyone else feel like when you have a goal you are more regimented in your routine? You make more of an effort to get on your horse even when it's 1000* or you have a cold or head ache or are so freaking tired? I feel like a show would make me work harder on both horses. Because I do get lax. But after a week or so of getting back into a steady routine, it's easier to keep going. And before I know it, both pony and I are fit and progressing.

fat cow
I'm also ready to buy a dressage saddle. So if anyone has one in the $400 range? 17.5-18" seat and adjustable gullet is a must because he is all belly and no topline but he get's tankish and thick with work and I'll have to make the saddle wider as he gets fit again. So Wintec or Tekna??