2013 Memories

2013 Memories

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Way.Too.Excited.

Inavale Farms just posted on Facebook tonight that they are opening limited XC schooling starting this weekend!!!! They rarely are ever open this early due to wet weather but the last 2 weeks or so has been nice for the most part so everything is dried up. Some years schooling isnt open at all, or just for people competing in the one days the first weekend of June, and then isnt open until after their recognized 3 day at the end of June. Essentially not allowing us to go school XC before the event. I really hope there is water in the water complex (very hit or miss on this, especially if they are not filling it up yet) as that is one big thing I want to get him through. Other than that it is just getting him back out there before the derby! Not to mention it is potentially the most fun thing to do, ever! All those people in Florida/California/etc dont understand how lucky they are to be able to school most of the year!


Tolo is doing really good. I have started lunging him with side reins and will go to long lining him next. I have a show picked out for him at the end of July. I feel like that is plenty of time to get him going under saddle again and it will be a true test as to how he will handle life half blind. At this point I plan to at least do training 2 and 3 but in my opinion he should be able to do first 1. Him being blind in one eye should not affect his prior training and although he was only doing intro with his last owner I took him up to first 1 with success. The only question will be if his brain will work :)

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Back to the star of the show!


Isnt it amazing how much time you can spend at the barn when you dont have to worry about time?! Its not even that I get a lot done but I just spend more time on the ground with my pony. I brought him in from the pasture and re-did his mane so I could take pictures of him. I am trying to take side view pictures of him about once a week to both see the progress and the difference in this year (wearing fat pony muzzle) from last year (running free without it!). I also finally remembered to bring my clippers so I could clean up his face/ears. He gets that goat beard and dangling ear hairs going on if I dont keep up on it, which I dont do very well without shows! In my opinion he looks much more handsome all trimmed up :)

Hairy man

Clean shaven!

This is just from his bridle path, goat hairs, and his ears!

Awful picture but it shows you how long his mane is getting!


Falling asleep while I braided his hair
And hes gone haha One man that loves getting his hair done
After getting beautified a bit we went for a ride. We walked outside for about 15 minutes before heading to the arena. After hard workouts both Thurs/Fri I just kept it to 20 minute dressage work at the trot. After getting him forward and loose we had some really nice work! We did some leg yields, shoulder in, and some pony trot lengthenings. As long as I set him up good he is really starting to understand the lengthenings and I can really feel a difference. I cant wait to hit up some dressage shows.




On the bridle front... I bought one! It was super unplanned but last night I went on ebay and was looking around and found a brown barely used oversize Micklem Competition bridle for $125 (with reins!). Needless to say I bought it right away! You dont find used ones easily let alone in the bigger size. So although I was planning on waiting and ordering new from Smart Pak (so I could return with full refund) I just couldnt pass up this deal and figured if it doesnt end up fitting him I could always resell it. Should be getting it later this week :)

Saturday, April 27, 2013

All shed out

Non Mystic related (although im going to see him right after this!) but instead about another man in my life... Tolo! He is doing great but is still just hanging out. He got a bath and a short lunge today and was great!

Photo comparison:


These are all from day one




Today!





Ok I couldn't leave him out... Just look at that face!
We had a nice relaxed grooming day so he could rest after a conditioning day and a jump day back to back (he is in better shape then he lets on!). Maybe a trail ride tomorrow? Who knows!



Friday, April 26, 2013

Help!

Sadly the bridle I really wanted sold to someone else... But it really got me looking online for others!
With eventing season approaching fast I really need to pick up a few items, the biggest being a jump bridle!

I have really thought about a Micklem but has been turned off by all the comments on hard to fit and run small. Both of which will not work for his head. He has the drafty width to it but isnt long. After seeing a picture of it on Welsh Cob (Connor!) I started thinking about it again. Your guys thoughts on the whole idea of them and any one have one? Would you go this route instead of the figure 8? If you would go figure 8 which brand would you go to? I would LOVE a Vespucci but with new prices being up towards $300 I would have to wait to buy it for a couple months and just jump in my dressage bridle. Not the classiest thing, especially with our first recognized event at the end of June!

A bridle is definitely first on the list but along with that I hope to accumulate more stuff over the summer also! I would love to get him a pair of Back on Track hock boots and the mesh sheet, a white half pad for my jump saddle, fleece SJ girth, and XC boots (even the hairy guys need a little something!). Im sure there is more in there but that is the 'big' stuff. I LOVE shopping but I just want to be able to buy it all right now! Having no money is no fun for tack shopping!


Thursday, April 25, 2013

Entry SENT!

Im am beyond excited for our first jumper show in May! I entered us in one 2'-2'3" class as a warm up class. Since it is his first jumper show and he really has limited time over stadium fences I figured it would be good to start it low so even if he is looky at the fences we could still have a decent ride and not over face him too much. After that he gets to do two 2'3"- 2'6" classes. I really dont think any of it will be an issue but I want to give him a chance to look at first should he feel the need to. My goals for the show are to just have nice rounds that dont feel like I am having to work really hard to get him through. As long as I make sure to get him moving forward I dont think there will be any issues.

XC schooling last year. We know the pony can jump!


Another exciting event is the Rolex this weekend!!!! My pick is Becky Holder and Cant Fire Me and they are sitting pretty after day one of dressage in 2nd place. I would LOVE to ride under her one day! I loved watching her and Comet and it seems as if her and Teddy are quite the pair also. Super excited to watch XC!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Polo Pony!

I did it. Tolo officially looks like a polo pony! After getting him back with a western pony mane (yucky, that was the first thing to go) I started pulling it. Then gave up because it was taking FOREVER. Then I cut it and pulled it more which helped some but still wasnt working for me so I did the worst thing... I shaved the under side of his mane. Since then the shaved part has been growing and his mane has just been wild. Its not like he will be going to any shows soon so tonight I took the leap and just shaved it all off. He actually looks much cuter than I thought he would!

I will get a better picture tomorrow when it is lighter outside!

After working at a barn this morning before being at work at 8 and working till 5 45, then getting to the barn and finishing cleaning buckets I wasnt in for a 'real' ride. So naturally I hoped on bridleless and took him for a 20-30 minute walk! He hadnt been ridden since Friday (due to dog show over weekend) and he was great. I think the grazing muzzle is doing its job (but it is rubbing :/) as he is definitely losing weight! I think he is looking really good. Now just got to get him back on a regular working schedule. It has been so scattered this last week due to being called in to work almost daily, ruining all my plans for the day. Tomorrow he is going to be a dressage school and as long as I dont get pulled into work early on Thursday I plan to jump him.


I found a Vespucci figure 8 bridle (brand new) online and am really hoping to get it for him! It has been up for sale for awhile when I had seen it before it was listed at $225. Then I found it on Ebay starting at $150 so I responded to the selling on FB (where I first saw it). If it doesnt sell on Ebay I may get a super great deal on a super nice bridle and it will look super cute on my pony (a lot of supers but thats how excited I am!!)! I am seriously crossing my fingers. I have looked and looked at this bridle and I want it. He will look SOOOOO cute in a figure 8! And it will be just in time for our jumper show next month :)

Monday, April 22, 2013

Distracting myself

Horses are GREAT at distracting you when your mind is else where and that is exactly how I used my pony this morning.

I have mentioned before on here that I do agility with my dogs and my mom is a dog trainer. Being a trainer and working at a humane society means we have lots of dogs, six to be exact! One being our 15 year old Shepard X that we have had since he was just a puppy. Sadly, his time has come and we are having to put him down. He has had a great life but we have been fighting keeping him healthy for the last 6 months and we decided that it is now his time. A choice we havent taken lightly. He is the reason my mom choose her career path, took her all the way to earning his NATCH in agility and has been a companion for us all. He has raised numerous amounts of puppies with us and kept everyone in line! I honestly dont remember a day without him as I was just 5 years old when he first came home. Needless to say it has been a constant thought on my mind and we havent even done it yet.

The pony was a great distraction and enjoyed every minute of his unplanned spa day today! It was much needed too. It was a good thing I washed and re did his mane as I found a tick.... NASTY! So weird considering I have never found a tick on a horse (especially around here). Then last week Alannas horse had one and now Mystic. We got it all pulled out (aka someone else that was at my barn did it because I was too grossed out). I felt so bad for him!




Took off for a buck right after rolling!

Suited up to go back outside! Sunscreened nose, fly sprayed, fly lotion, fly mask, and his grazing jail :)

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Pretty Perfect

Everyone who knows my horse knows that he is perfect, its just a fact (besides his recent traumatic issues with his grazing muzzle!) :) Getting called spoiled, lucky, etc just comes with the territory when you have such a nice horse haha! As much as I love Tolo, he has also reminded me how spoiled/lucky/what ever other word you want to use I am to have a not 'normal' horse in Mystic. No complaints on my end :) Although my next horse will have big shoes to fill!!


We had a nice bareback ride yesterday and he enjoyed today off as I was at an agility trial all day with my dog. He will most likely have tomorrow off also depending on when we get done. I got samples of this newer shampoo (specifically for horses with lots of hair) that I am super excited to try. I really hope it helps with his stains! If it does I plan to order more after pay day. I will be sure to take some before and after pictures!

As far as Tolo... the night after our catching issues I called to him as I was walking out to get him and guess who met me right at the gate?! Someone learned his lesson! Going to talk to the barn owner of the place right by Mystic to see about an open stall!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Or not...

After a long day at work I was all looking forward to going out to see my beautiful ponies face and have a beautiful ride! Did that happen? Of course not... I get home to find Tolo got loose, no big deal I was just going to go catch him, throw him in his stall, and grab my breeches to go to the barn. Tolo instead did the people equivalent of flipping me off, with all four legs as he took off running. 45 minutes (yes you read that right, 45 minutes) later I had a soaking wet, with sweat, super tired horse that finally had a halter on. I definitely could have caught him earlier should I have gone and gotten some grain or something but catching issues are NOT issues I plan on having and I am not going to reward him for running away from me. Nothing is more frustrating then having to spend 45 minutes catching your horse.

By the time I caught him he needed to be seriously cooled out and be sponged off so add on another 20 minutes and there goes my barn time/desire to ride. He has been wearing thin on my patience already too! I know he has to be bored not being in work (or really getting that much attention, especially in the last week or 2) but there is really not much I can do about that. I have been looking for somewhere to take him but finding a place is not easy. I dont need much but most places are not enough, too expensive (for me having to pay to board 2 horses), or too far away. There is a barn right next to Mystics that may have a stall open but it is a stall only (no run) and I know they dont get outside daily which would make him just as crazy. It would be super nice to have my boys right next to eachother. Not only for convenience but also so Mystic could help me out by ponying him and such. I guess tonight was just a kick in the pants to find a place for him!


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Going crazy

Both the pony and I are going crazy. Pony going crazy over food, and me going crazy over the ponies new attitude! It is actually pathetic, and quite irritating, how much he has changed since getting his grazing muzzle on (while on pasture). If I thought before that his thoughts every waking second were all about food I was wrong. He is obsessed. Like walking down the road ripping the reins out of my hand, running me over to get into his stall, etc.

We had a mediocre ride tonight. He tried really hard to not be forward. Normally I just need to get onto him in the beginning of our ride and he gets the idea but today he didnt. I kept the ride short and quit after I got some nice work as I didnt want to push him if he was feeling a bit off. Back to the drawing board for tomorrow! Hopefully we will have a better ride and he gets over his food obsession soon. If it doesn't he might just get his way! I am scheduling a vet visit in the next two week for his yearly vaccines, dental, check up so I will see what she has to say about it also!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

SO ready!

Im so ready for show season to start! By this time last year I had already been to 2 dressage shows. This year? NONE. How sad?! He has done a dressage show (his 2nd level debut!) and we did the expo but thats it so far. Kind of depressing. Luckily the next few months will be filled with stuff to do! If I can figure out a trailer situation (after all these years of having one, not having one seriously sucks. I need to hit the lotto!) I will take him to a league show and do 2nd with him on the 28th. But that is all very last minute and I just was thinking today if I could make it work then might as well!

Our next few months look like this:

May 12th- hunter jumper show at Inavale

I feel like we had more planned in May but I dont remember haha (maybe a dressage show if I find one)

June 1st- Inavale one day

June 8th- XC clinic at Inavale

Last weekend of June- Inavale 3 day event

Tonight the arena was closed so we went on a bridle less trail ride with another boarder. Since the pony finally got put in pony grazing jail and is now in a grazing muzzle he thinks he is starving. So just imagine us walking down a grassy path bridle less... He was definitely showing us his walking/eating skills!




Tolo is doing great. I havent done much of anything with him besides groom him. I really need to find a place where I can put him back to work. If he is boarded somewhere it will make it all much easier. Finding that place? VERY hard...

Fun hair do the pony got :)



Saturday, April 13, 2013

Jumping pony!

The pony and I need to get our stuff together and get jumping again! I didnt mind giving him the winter off jumping, he is young and we were focusing on getting our 2nd level moves. But with Inavale fast approaching we need to get jumping (will most likely stick to once a week for now) and conditioning if we want to be ready for our first 3 day in June!

So today I pulled out a few fences. Since September of last year he has jumped only a handful of times yet he picks up right where we left off each and every time. I.Love.It. He is such a straight forward and easy ride over fences once you get his butt in gear and going forward. I just had 3 fences set. A line set as a 3 stride for a big horse and 4 for him along with a diagonal fence that we could make into a bending line. We kept the fences small with one cross rail, one 2'3" vertical, and one 2'3" oxer. As long as I rode him nicely to the fences we got good distances. He tends to suck back a little right before the fence, I think just do to him not knowing how to gauge his own distances as well yet and not knowing if he should go long or short, but as long as I keep my leg on it really helps him know when to go. I 'dressed' the fences up with some orange cones under them and besides a little twist and peek mid jump he wasnt fazed at all and never questioned me asking him to go over them. I cannot tell you how encouraging that is!!



He even took his Auntie Alanna for a spin!

First jumper show is next month out at Inavale. As of now I am planning on doing a 2'-2'3" class as a warm up then doing two 2'3"-2'6" classes. He really has limited stadium jumping experience compared to XC so I want to start with a small confidence building height first. Im super excited to see how he takes it all in but he seems to really love it :)

Friday, April 12, 2013

Pony Torture


After our great lesson on Monday he got Tuesday off. Then on Wednesday we:

Played some soccer! He LOVED it of course. I just sit up there and he chases the thing around the whole arena. He even cantered and kicked it!

Then on Thursday we had a nice dressage ride! I worked on some stuff that we worked on in our lesson and I really think things improved! He is such a handy little guy and continually impresses me with his dressage moves. Let alone just his nice comfortable gaits (unlike many Gypys I have seen).


Then today... AKA Pony torture day. I actually bought his grazing muzzle last fall knowing that I needed to use it this spring. But of course I have put it off because I feel SO BAD putting it on him! I finally caved today and got it all fitted for him (how many people does it take to fit a grazing muzzle? yeah that would be 3 haha!). I wanted to put it on when I could go out the next day part of the way through and check to see how it was going. After getting it all fitted I took him out and let him graze for  a minute so he could figure it out. He was very disturbed with it at first but figured it out pretty quickly. Hopefully he just needs to wear it until the grass isnt quite a rich. I also need to really start conditioning him so that should help along with us getting back to 'real' work after the expo!

Mad pony!

Tomorrow I am going to wash and re do his mane after jumping him. Should be a fun day! Our first jumping show is middle of May at a hunter/jumper schooling show at Inavale. Pony needs to get jumping!


Monday, April 8, 2013

When you think its enough, go even further!

Mystic and I had a great lesson tonight. It was way over due and I could tell areas that I havent worked on as much. March was consumed with the expo so we missed all of March and it showed! We came back fatter and less practiced then ideal but got some great clarity to some issues, and will definitely not be skipping a month of lessons again any time soon (knock on wood!)!

A quick recap:
1- Keep hips and shoulders to the inside! Without even thinking about it I twist to the outside (especially tracking right) and it is NOT a good habit! She was constantly reminding me to turn inside and when you think 'I feel like I am completely sideways' you hear 'Even more!'. It is totally awkward and hard to do but essential, especially at this point (where we cant fake our way through a test).

2- Slow.Him.Down. I have him way to strung out when I have been working on our simple changes and have been struggling. Tonight I really had to half halt (hard!) and get him sitting on his bottom in order to get it. He anticipates the change in gait but tries to break right when I put my leg on on really collect him before the walk. I have to be really strong with my right rein as he like to throw his body to the outside which in turn gets him off his hind end.

3- I hold him to much with my left rein sometimes still. It has been an ongoing battle with me (and has gotten better!) but it came out more when we were working on counter canter. Instead of riding him outside leg to inside rein (mainly tracking right) I try to keep the bend using my outside rein which is obviously counter productive! Overall we actually got some really nice counter canter work! It was our first time going around the arena in the counter canter instead of doing a shallow loop or serpentine. We started on the correct lead and then did half a 10 meter circle then headed back to the wall (like an ice cream cone shape) in the counter canter.

4- I just need to seriously ride him and be more focused in our dressage schools. It was seriously hard at some points but in the end it would work. I am going to feel it tomorrow thats for sure!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Never ever again, like EVER!

Alanna and I had this brilliant idea yesterday on our trail ride that we should just ride "the loop" after making it about half way anyways (thinking it would be about the same as just turning around). Wrong! It was quite possibly the most miserable trail. If we were not going straight up a hill we were going straight down. All on rocky footing in the pouring down rain. We sure picked it good!

Luckily Mystic was super good. Even though I knew he was tired he just kept trucking along with his ears up :) Since we had Roz with us we had to just keep it to a walk anyways so I dont think it was too hard for him  besides it being an almost 10 mile trail ride by the end. At least we can check it off as things to never do again! I think half of my problems was that it was rainy and windy and I was soaking wet. 

Since he got quite the workout yesterday im just going to keep it to light work today!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Nice weather?!

It has been super gorgeous here, for March at least. Sadly I haven't gotten much pony riding time. I have only ridden him a handful of times since the Expo. When I went out to ride yesterday he has a swollen part of his side/back. Didnt seem painful but I didnt want to put a saddle on it. I did put him on the lunge line just to make sure he looked okay and he did. Then I lunged him a little more, the spring grass is coming on and we know what that mean ;) After a little work I walked him down the road and called it a night. Hopefully it looks better tonight and I can actually work him.


Tolo is doing great. He has a bromance with our neighbors dog. Its actually adorable. Tolo will lower his head and Otto will lick his ears. The neighbor boy loves Tolo also and feeds him carrots. Tolo will hang out with them all day!