Friday, June 12, 2015

Some days you've just gotta run!

I love freshly mowed hay fields
Charlie was having one of those days where he couldn't stand still and would rather jig than walk. I don't know what got him so worked up, but the other horses were looky too so it must have been something.

I'm a big fan of making a horse's feet move more if they refuse to stand still or listen so, since serpentines weren't quite cutting it, I used the big newly cut hay field to my advantage. Twice end-to-end at a working trot and once at a canter (a fast, happy, bucking canter at some points) was enough to get the ants out of his pants. Charlie was quite happy to walk around calmly after that, and when we got back to the barn he got a cool liniment bath. All in all, it was a nice change of pace (haha pun intended). What's more fun than a wide open field?

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

....On hold....

Charlie and I have been kind of on hold the past few weeks. I've been alternating between riding him bareback and in the western saddle, but I'm really missing having an english jumping saddle. The hunt is on for one in my price range, and I have a few leads, but I also have to figure out what to do with the Toulouse....
What's going on up there?
In the meantime, bareback or western it is! I like bareback because I can really feel what Charlie is doing underneath of me and it offers a good workout on my end, but what Charlie really needs right now is lots of work on long and low and trotting with impulsion. Bareback + big trot = not comfortable or sustainable for either of us! I can push Charlie into more of a workout in the western saddle, but it continues to stay hard and stiff, even though I keep oiling it. Neither myself nor Charlie like that so much for long periods of time.

Added the draw reins again yesterday, with moderate success

We have done a lot of little trail rides, even venturing a little bit down the road. There are lots of deer out right now. Good continued desensitizing for Charlie. We saw two bucks on Monday and a doe with her little fawn this morning.

In other news, Charlie the Cat had to have a cystotomy just about two weeks ago. Poor guy had a huge bladder stone :( Luckily we have pet insurance through PetPlan (best decision ever!), so financially it was not an issue. Now he's essentially back to normal, and I've already gotten reimbursed for the bulk of the payment, which is nice.

A "Get Well Soon" card from Gran
Also, my sister got a job in Indiana. Since the start date was less than three weeks from when she accepted, I took a few days off last week and drove out with her to look for apartments. It ended up being quite the whirlwind tour, but all in all we had a great little trip and found a place that I think will be perfect for her.

This weekend I'm heading down to Maryland to cheer on my best friend in an Alumni IHSA competition. I almost signed up for it myself, but ultimately decided I'd rather save the entry fees for something else since I haven't jumped a course in...well...a couple of years (!). I just wasn't sure it would be worth the gamble to see whether I've still got it in me to jump an entire course on a horse I've never ridden, after having so little recent jumping practice. Emily has stayed competitive, though, so I'm anxious to root her on!