Thursday, August 13, 2015

Redeeming herself

So my last post wasn't very positive and then I disappeared for a while, which might have left a person or two wondering about my little mare. If you were worried, don't be, she isn't going anywhere.

After I wrote that I decided that I needed to make a real effort to work with her a lot more. When her hoof healed I rode her every day for a week and she didn't put a foot wrong. She really does have a heart of gold.

Recently, I found a local trainer who not only uses Classical techniques but is willing to make house calls! She also has her own collection of redheaded mares (OTTBs) so she's very comfortable working with horses that might be labeled as "hot."

Today, for the first time ever, I had a lunge line lesson riding Gwen. She trotted up and down a hill, in a circle, with me on her back trying to fix my posting position- and she was a rockstar! Unfortunately I started out as a nervous mess, so the real point of the lesson turned into getting me to let go of the fear and actually trust my girl. That is hard to lose but after our experience today my fear level dropped about 25% and the trainer had only good things to say about my girl.

So yeah, we're doing okay!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Heavy questions

Good news, my art was selected to be in the show next month! I'm very excited!

In other news, my mare is a nut. You remember those pastures I worked my butt off to clear so they'd have more grass to eat? She's scared to be in them. She wasn't even in one of them for an hour when, in an anxiety fit, she raced around the pasture and then blasted through the fence. Unfortunately there are still remnants of little trees that had been cut off a little above ground level in there- she stepped on one and punctured her foot. She seems to be mostly healed now but it took two weeks of soaking, booting, wrapping, and topical treatments to get it there.

That's not normal, right? Most horses, when moved from a pasture with little grass into a pasture with a lot of grass are normally happy, right? Look at these pictures, this was an hour after I put her out here. Notice the grass, lots of grass, and she still made herself into a sweaty mess.

Is there an anti-anxiety med for horses that actually works? I need to find a way to take her down a notch, especially since my family keeps telling me to get rid of her. Get rid of her how? I can't sell her, I'd fear for her safety and the safety of anyone who took her. Ugh.

After her foot is completely healed I'm going to make an effort to work with her every day, get a routine started, and see if that doesn't help her mind get in a good place. If that doesn't work, I'm not sure what I'm going to do...

Monday, April 20, 2015

Still alive!

Just a little update for the three people still checking into my blog, yes I'm still alive. My horses are still alive too. I've even got a sort of plan for training and riding them this year. Part of my plan hinges on what kind of outdoor play equipment I can get to keep my son occupied for a half hour or so at a time...

Babies change everything.

In other stuff I've been doing, I've been focusing on art this year. I've always been a bit of a "closet" artist but this year I've decided to really go for it. Here's a piece that I finished last week that I'm thinking of entering into a local, juried, show.

What do you think?

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Evening feed at my house

Evening feed at my house:

Get the toddler all bundled up in his snow suit, get myself all bundled up. Walk halfway out to the chicken coop, remember that I forgot hot water for the chickens, walk back into the house to get hot water. Get all the way out to the coop, bust the ice out of the pan and refill with water. Chickens are good for the night.

Walk over lawn to horses, note the toddler is in the middle of the yard. Get the horses' feed pans ready, hear the toddler crying. Rush out to yard to find the child has fallen down in the snow and can't get up. Hoist up the child. Go back down and find the horses charging around the pasture because they are obviously starving to death. Carry out the feed pans while elbowing the horses out of the way. Walk back to the shed and pull down a hay bale, check in the water tank. SHIT, there's a dead rodent in there. Child starts crying out in the lawn. Run out to help toddler, find him lying facing down licking snow off the ground. Right the toddler. Get back to the shed and dump out the water tank.

Carry bale of hay out to the feeder, get the hay in the bag and the bag in the tank, look up and, SHIT, toddler in the horse pasture (he knows better). Run across the icy pasture to escort toddler out, remember dead rodent is still in the shed. Use hay strings to pick up said rodent and toss it out of the pasture into the weeds. Walk around to refill the water tank. Look down to see a chicken has laid an egg on the floor, yesterday, now it's cracked. Toss egg out the door into more weeds.

Walk at toddler speed back up to the house and then carry the boy up the steps because he can't do it with snow pants on. Take soggy, snow covered clothes off. Warm up and wait to do it again tomorrow.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Fighting for their supper

My poor horses, having to deal with this:

Handsome is wearing soaking boots because of THRUSH! Aaarrggh! I'm so frustrated about this, I would chalk it up to fall swampiness but he has thrush in the middle of summer when the ground is dry. Since the feed is always the same I'm wondering if it's the culprit. I swapped out their feed last weekend so I can see if the added sugar in it was causing the thrush. Not that I was feeding sweet feed, but there was molasses in it. I'm hoping that not having any molasses will have a positive effect. Fingers crossed!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Dressage: How it used to be

Post by Thomas Kirst.

If for nothing else, make sure you watch to the end where you can see a woman pat down the sweaty horse and then enthusiastically shake her hand off. Hehe.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Riding Miss Gwenevere

I've been riding Miss Gwenevere! Yes I have!

After cutting down a thousand trees, mowing and waiting for the horrible biting flies to go away, I was able to start riding again. Yippee!

I've been able to get on Gwen about twice a week for the past two months and she's doing really well. I'm also doing really well. I'm happy to say that I'm no longer nervous/scared/anxious about climbing onto her back. I tack her up, walk to the mounting block and just get on. It doesn't seem like much but to me it means a LOT.

Anyway, she's been working on moving her hindquarters, her shoulders, walking figure eights. She even got in a few steps of shoulder-in the other day. Progress!