2013 Memories

2013 Memories

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Lots of riding

Today I rode 3 horses! I had morning class then headed to the barn (I have like a 3 hour break between my morning class and my  afternoon horse training class). I didnt go out Monday as I was super tired and freezing after work. I had all the intentions of going out last night but I stopped by Alannas house to visit her after her first chemo treatment and we all know how that ends, 2 hours later I headed back home. I couldnt miss Hart of Dixie of course :) I just hoped on him bareback but had his bridle on and we did some work for about 30 minutes before walking down the road and calling it a day. I love this horse so much!

Then I headed into my horse class. I started a blog for her but didnt keep up on it as there really wasnt much to say for the last month we have started working on under saddle work. I think I posted about her in the very beginning but she is a 16.3 hand 12 year old Canadian Warmblood mare. We have made tons of progress on the ground and she is super sweet. Going to get on? Lets just say we have spent the last 3 weeks (we only meet M/W/F) or more getting her to relax for me to get on and just sit on her. Mean while the other 12 horses (2 others were in my boat) have been cantering their horses for 2 weeks. A light bulb FINALLY went off in Roses head this week and we have our first 2 rides all by ourselves under our belt, we even trot! Today was our first day walking outside of the round pen and with a group of other horses. She settled in really well and we called it a day. Im so happy we are finally able to make progress under saddle. She is really nice and responsive. She turns, whoas, and goes all with relatively easy cues given its our 2nd real ride. On Friday we got the go ahead to do some trot work outside the round pen with the group! How exciting.

After I finished with her and had put her away and done her chores I went up and was watching the second group of horses in the arena. One Quarter Horse mare (who had dumped one of her people on Monday) was acting up and being naughty again today. Throwing her shoulder and running sideways and just ignoring her rider. With about 30 minutes left in class I hear my teacher screaming "Tarra! Where is Tarra? Get your helmet and get in the arena!" So I grab my helmet and head into the arena. My teacher told the mares person to get off and wanted me to get on her. So on I hoped and boy oh boy has this horse gotten away with murder undersaddle! She totally just throws her shoulder and shoots sideways. Into other horses, people, walls, etc. She had no respect for the riders before, clearly. She wanted to do what she wanted and how she wanted and was not pleased that I was not letting her do it! I worked for her awhile having to take my foot out of the stirrup (was riding western) and hard core kick her to get responses from her. She was not the quickest learner but after a couple times of her you know what hitting the fan when she tried pulling something she did get a lot better. I guess she had just started refusing to go forward with her trainer person also. She tried a couple times but it wasnt a big issue. She knew that I meant business and I was so not putting up with her crap! I mean my horse that had 2 rides went around 1000000 time better then she did and she has been being ridden for weeks! I did really get after her several times pretty good because otherwise she does her horsey flip off and would go where she wanted (what she did with the other people). It was actually really funny, we had our own little cheering section of classmates watching as I tried to not take out the other 6 super green horses cantering around the arena both of us not trying to run into eachother and both of our horses heading straight for eachother! I just hope I dont get switched horses!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Just lovin' life!

We had a nice short bareback and bridleless ride tonight. There was a bunch of hammering and sawing going on right by the arena (owners building a little cabin, how cool is that?!) and he was super good about it. Not that I expected any less but he is kind of a shorty and cant see over the wall all that well so I just didnt know what he would think of it. I am going to make my own neck rope and start teaching him more tricks. We have to get ready to win fan favorite at the expo of course :)

Here is a fun little survey people are doing, thought we would give it a shot!

Splurge or save: 

1) saddle: save! Find a good deal on a nice saddle :)
2) board: Find a reasonable price for quality care aka: Never Done Farms where the pony is at!
3) halter: Every pony needs a leather halter! (still need to get his nameplate put on.. whooops!)
4) bit:  save
5) bridle:  Save in some ways. One that isnt too expensive but is pretty and gets the job done
6) saddle pad: I would like to say save but I just LOVE saddle pads and prob spend more on them then I should!
7) trailer: mommy just sold ours :( I need to start saving for one eventually. Wont be saving but not splurging either, a happy medium!

First thing that comes to mind: 

1) Haflinger: freaking adorable
2) Quarter Horse: yup got to go with Alanna... downhill and S.L.O.W
3) Thoroughbred: love them!
4) Warmblood: Someday I will have one
5) Welsh Cob: Alannas next horse! And Cardi of course

This or That:

1) english or western: English
2) tall or short: Either or. Love my little 14.3 hand guy but like the big ones also
3) trail ride or beach ride: Beach all the way, love it!
4) long mane or short mane: Either. Obviously Mystics is long. Just depends on the breed as to what I like
5) hunters or jumpers: Jumpers!  
6) XC or barrel racing: XC no douby
7) outdoor arena or indoor arena: Outdoor
8) trot or canter: Canter
9) canter or gallop: Gallop
10) paddock boots, tall boots, or cowboy boots: Tall boots
11) horse shoes or barefoot: Barefoot! Yay for ponies!
12) saddle or bareback: Depends on the day. I always love a nice bareback day :)

About you: 
1) How long have you been riding? Since I was 5 or 6 (am now 19 you do the math!)
2) Do you own or lease a horse? Own
3) Breed? Age? Height? Name? (if you don’t own or lease, you could talk about your lesson horse) Mystic Prince: Gypsy Vanner, 5 years old, 14.3 hands
4) Do you have any other pets? Of course! A mini aussie named Harley and a mutt named Max
5) If your horse was a person, what kind of voice would they have (you can use a celebrity for an example) Dont know who he would sound like but a deep, ooffy (not a word but if you can get what im saying you will get it!) old man voice that is like "whatever you want mom"

6) Does your horse have a “color”? If so, what is it, and what do you have in that color? Yes! It was blue but now transitioning into red/white/blue
7) Does your horse do any tricks? We started working on bowing so he kind of does it
8) Have you ever dressed your horse up for Halloween?  Nope.

1) Breed? Love me my Vanners! And warmbloods and thoroughbreds
2) Discipline? Eventing/dressage
3) Coat color? Bays with chrome! Black and white isnt too bad either :)
4) Famous horse? Courageous Comet
5) Horse race/competition? Rolex!
6) Brand of tack? Dont really have one
7) Thing to do with your horse?  Beach rides, bridleless work, trail rides, too much to name!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

So Thankful

Thanksgiving is definitely one of my most looking forward to day of the year, if that made any sense at all! Every year we have our annual 'clean up' where we gather things we dont use and outgrown clothes and donate them to Goodwill, then we eat (a LOT!), and go see a movie. There truly is no better way to spend a day then with your family!

To save me time here are some pictures of some of what I am thankful for this year :)
My puppy Harley! And our new agility adventures together

Getting to go to Nashville with my dad and sister

Another super successful show season with  my boy

Spending time in Florida with family, SO much fun!

Cousin bonding time this summer :)

Many, many adventures with my best friend. This was at the country music festival :)

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Moving on!

The pony and I had a great lesson last night! It gave us a good idea of where we are now, which isnt to bad, and what we need to do to get where we want to be. The added elements going from first to second are: collected trot and canter, 10 meter canter circles, shoulder in, simple changes and the rein backs (and thats just going from first 3 to second 1!). I have played with some walk to canter transition with him before as we use them when we jump so he had the general concept of those down pretty good. We had also started some shoulder in in our lessons over the summer.

During our warm up it became really apparent that I really need to be asking him for more bend, especially to his hard side (tracking right), and to make sure that when I ask him to yield off my leg that he does it from his rib cage and not just in his haunches like he would like to do. I can really feel when he starts getting wiggly in his hind end and tries throwing it every which way so I should be able to catch it. I just need to make sure that I am really focusing on it and not letting him get away with it at all. He started off stiff but seemed to really loosen up much quicker than he has in the past which was really nice to feel! Another thing I really need to work on is not holding him up with my reins. At this point we really need to start being able to show that he is carrying himself there fore getting the correct work instead of him holding onto him and faking it! I dont think I realized how much I have been doing it until a few moment last night when Mary told me to let go of one of my reins (the one that was trying to keep him up) and instead use that inside leg more. Even to his hard side when I was riding him well I could feel a huge difference and could really feel him carrying himself. It did however take a ton of leg! His shoulder in tracking left was good for not having worked on it and shouldn't be a problem at all by March. Tracking right was much harder for us. That is when I try compensate him not bending by me using my reins. The good thing is we have several months to get it good! Going in to our shoulder in work Mary pointed out how much I dont ride into my corners (whoops!). Basically at the level of work we have been doing it was fine but going into second level I need to be pushing him much further into the corner with lots of inside leg and a leading outside rein. Once I started really riding him into them it got much better, I just need to make it a habit to ride like that every time! After schooling our shoulder in both ways we started some canter work as we wanted to work on getting the foundation in for our simple changes. Im not going to lie... when I got off after our lesson my legs were definitely feeling it, and we didnt even do that much, from all the squeezing! Basically we are teaching him that when I start squeezing  his guts out he knows that he gets to walk soon. So on a small canter circle I would half halt and squeeze 3 strides in a row before asking for the walk. Of course they were not perfect but they were not bad at all. He never just fell on his forehand and completely lost everything. He kind of stumbled into the walk a couple times but it was never anything super major.

Overall it was a very encouraging ride! We have our homework to work on until our lesson next month. I told him no more 1st level stuff, been there done that time to move on buddy! Depending on where we are at we might actually do 1st 3 in May at our first recognized show but it all just depends on how far along our 2nd level work we are :)

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Lesson tomorrow!

Im super excited for our lesson tomorrow. I actually think super excited is an understatement! We had a good ride this morning in the nasty cold and wind ewww!

This is how excited he is to see his Teacher Mary!

I am really hoping to be able to show second level next year with him. Whether it be in May or October, at a recognized or schooling show, I want to make it happen! I know we have a lot of work ahead of us to get there but he is a super willing hardworking dude and I think we can make it happen! Plus we need some gorgeous pictures of us doing our thing at Devonwood :)

Thursday, November 8, 2012

2 Years

Its really sad... but I forgot to post on our two year date together (which was actually on Halloween, whoops!)! Here are some fun pictures/videos to see how far we have come in our 2 years :)

Right before loading up to head home!

Our first "ride"

First double ride along with our first ride along with one of his first rides!
Just off the trailer
Its almost embarrassing to post... but our first dressage test! He was only 60 days under light work at this point:

Compared to now!!

Im so excited to see what year 3 brings us :)

Monday, November 5, 2012

Best ride to date?

Quite possibly! For the past while (like long while actually) I have felt like a 10 year old first learning to ride. My legs havent felt steady and in the correct position and as much as I have tried to work on it, it actually hurt to put them where they should have been. About 2 weeks ago Alanna (after sitting in my saddle on my pony) said "I think the saddle tips you forward you should try putting the shims in the half pad". So tonight I did and it is AMAZING the difference it made! I felt so much more balanced and felt like I was really able to give him a great ride. Now I really need to apologize to him for riding him like crap and still getting good work!

I am SO excited to get to work on making it to second level for next year. I'm not sure if it will happen until the end of the season but we will just wait and see how we develop over the winter and spring. Everyone has said that the most tears are shed between 1st and 2nd level so I am not going into this thinking it will be a piece of cake (not that I ever have). I have to pinch myself every time I think we could be competing at 2nd level next year. For one I have never competed that high (or even ridden a horse with that knowledge) let alone on my own adorable pony that no one (besides the people that know him of course!) thinks could do 1st level. This month I am so thankful for this horse and everything he has given me!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Body Clipped!

Finally got to body clip the pony today! It will help SO much with riding him after work and it getting too cold to hose him off. He was super good for it of course and half way through I even untied him and just left him loose because the flies were really bothering him and he could reach them tied up. Of course he just stayed put until I finished anyways :)
All clipped and washed (I didnt wash his feather though as you can tell!)

SO handsome! I love how it really shows the grey between black/white

Friday, November 2, 2012

3 timing my pony

Yup... that is me, the cheating mother! For the last month I have had 4 horses to be working! Of course my usual main man Mystic being one. I am also in a horse training class for my degree and I have been given a Canadian Warmblood mare (3 days a week in class) to work until June. Then once a week I ride a quarter horse gelding for a guy at a barn I work for. And most recently I have taken on working my best friends horse Chevy as she is taking the beginning steps of kicking breast cancers butt. It has been quite fun to progress with all of them actually! Chevy leaves tomorrow for a month of professional training while Alanna (you can visit her blog at: begins her chemo treatment so I will be down to just 3 horses for a little bit.

The pony is still cute as ever! I have new plans for us. In March we want to enter in the All Breed Challenge at the NW Horse expo. You can win $, not to mention it would be super fun and we could debut our bridle-less routine FINALLY! I am also planning on taking him to the extreme trail course this month once it is open to school. Hopefully we will get some fun pictures :)