Wednesday, October 6, 2021

WW: Show Pics

 It's hard to get good show pics in a dark indoor, over cross rails, but the show photographer was a teen using the money to pay for her own shows and at $5/pic, I had to buy a couple.




"wot are legs?"Cinder, most definitely

When I sent this one to A, she said she felt so confident in Cinder that she decided to take a nap mid course


Friday, October 1, 2021

My Rides

 I realized I haven't really talked about my rides on Cin lately. For the most part, she's been really really good. So good that I tend to forget she's only four. But then she'll have an ADD day and I remember. 

I've been luck in that we've had weekly lessons with J and I feel like each ride we've made progress. We started with just trotting a single fence, to being able to trot a course of cross rails. Baby steps, but still steps! 

Always pat your pony

We had a lesson last night and since fall is here, it was starting to get dark during our ride. Cinder was a little more up than she normally is and I let that get to me. I was nervous about riding down to the far end because Cinder was tense down there and when we did make our way down there I forgot to ride and sat there like a sack of potatoes. After a couple of circles Cinder relaxed and I remembered to actually ride her and then the far end was a non issue. 

Not from last night but back when daylight after 6:30 was still a thing

We ended the lesson by trotting a fence out of the scary corner towards home and again, the first time I sat there like a lump and let Cinder get crooked and take off early. Thankfully she doesn't hold grudges (well, not in these instances) and the second time I remembered to go deeper on the turn and use more left leg to keep her straight. We had a nice jump, landed on the correct lead, and had a soft canter after. What more could a girl want?

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

MDT Jumper Schooling Show

Originally when we started planning for this little jumper schooling show, a few of A's other clients were going to come, but it ended up being just Cinder in the cross rails and A's gelding Metro in the 1.20m, ie the first and last classes of the day. I had gotten a day stall for Cinder because I don't trust her tied to the trailer, so at least she was able to hang out and I didn't have to worry about her. 

A came down again and schooled Cinder the day before the show

The facility was really nice with a huge indoor. There was a dressage rail set up along the perimeter of the arena, with room for people to sit and jump storage along the sides. Cinder had a couple hard spooks at the people along the rail, as well as a pile of planks, but once A got her going and started jumping she settled down. Cinder did stop at one of the fences that had these little picture frame boxes next to it. She stopped a good three or four strides out and had a bit of a tantrum about going forward when A asked. She did get over it, and in her typical fashion, acted like nothing happened when A approached it for the second time.


Uh oh, people

Cinder was fourth in the order so she had a few minutes to think and hang out in the warm up before her first round. We did have a moment of excitement when a naughty school pony jumped the dressage rail from the show ring into the warm up and almost ran into Cinder. Thankfully Cinder didn't bat an eye!

Actually people aren't that bad

 

Cinder was still a little green for the first round. Not bad, but a little looky and bulging out through the turns. But A did a really good job of just supporting her and letting her figure it out. They made it to the jump off and while A just let Cinder cruise around and made wide turns, they won the class. The second and third rounds were speed rounds, over the same course so A was able to refine the turns and their track. Cinder won the second round as well. By the third round she was totally chill and A and I briefly discussed me getting on her for it. I had brought all my stuff, but I decided to just leave A in the tack. Cinder was being so good, why change it up? And I do honestly love watching her go around so I didn't feel disappointed with not getting on.

 

spoiler alert

Unfortunately Cinder was a little too chill in the third round and pulled a rail. They were still the fastest four falter and scored fourth for their efforts. She did manage to pull off champion for the division and won a cool ribbon and a candle. She then got stuffed with cookies and put in a stall with a pile of hay while we waited for Metro to go. A had some great rounds with him and also ended up champion in the 1.20s. Go team!

They were both less than impressed with us wanting win pics



Monday, September 20, 2021

Just a Little Touch Up

Even though I'm not in Trainer A's barn anymore, she told me she still considers me "in her program". I even got to stay in the barn group chat about upcoming shows. So when A put it out to the group about going to a little jumper schooling show, I messaged her separately and asked if she wanted to show Cinder at it. She quickly responded, "Yes please!"


Cinder loves a long spot

I asked A if she wanted to ride Cinder at all before the show, and her response of "I probably should" made me laugh. So last week she came down and I handed the reins over for a little touch up ride. I've jumped trotted a few cross rails since bringing Cinder home, so she hadn't had a real jump school since the end of June. But you would have never know that by the way she happily hopped around. 

I told A she's such an event rider

A said she felt really good, more inclined to stretch into the contact, and like she rode her last week instead of 6 weeks ago. It felt very, very nice to hear that I haven't screwed her up too much since leaving full training! They warmed up over some cross rails before I put the fences up. They had a few baby horse bobbles, including a run out in a bending line in which Cinder didn't really focus on the second fence till the last second. But she came back around and did great on the second try.  

 

I'm excited to see them back in action together on Saturday! We're doing the show for mileage and experience, not ribbons and points, but I'm hoping we come home with some satin!


Thursday, September 9, 2021

The Good and the Bad

 Let's start with the good. Cinder has been absolutely great the past couple of weeks. We did manage to get a lesson in with A two weeks ago, and while Cinder was little more up and distracted that she has been lately, we had a couple of great breakthrough moments. 

One thing A said really clicked with me. Instead of thinking of pulling my elbows back, I'm to think of pulling them down. Once I got that visual in my head, I was able to put Cinder together and we had some really nice trot work. I can't remember elbows down for very long, and Cinder is still building muscle so she can't hold herself together for very long, but every ride since then we've been able to get that feeling back. 


We also had a lesson last week with J. I told her what A had me work on, and she expanded on that. Cinder has developed a fun little habit of popping her left shoulder out while cantering to the right, especially as we go past the gate. Friend A had Scottie out during part of my lesson and while Cinder handled her buddy being around and having to work, once Scottie left, she really, really starting bulging out towards the gate. At one point my left leg almost hit a fence post. We had a little discussion involving my left heel and her side. And what do you know, our next canter circle was probably our best one yet. She was listening, actually straight, and was able to come into my hand and we had a few strides of this lovely, floaty canter.


Someone was not happy about trailer loading practice

 

In the bad news department, Peebs reinjured himself and made the very tiny lesion he had much bigger. About ten days ago he tripped while we were trotting. He had scraped up the knee on his good leg and we think he hyperextended his bad leg to catch himself. I took him in yesterday to ultrasound the leg and make a new rehab plan. He's getting a Pro-Stride injection next week, is on Previcox and 10mins of hand grazing for now, and then we'll restart with the hand walking. I'm pretty sure this was actually part of his plan to just be fully retired. F-ing horses, amiright?

Thursday, August 26, 2021

Figuring it Out

 We all know horse training is a roller coaster, and baby horses are even worse. Cinder and I are currently on a high spot, and while I'm not sure why, I'll take it. 

Mentally I've been a bit fried since bringing her home. Work was awful and having her home and under my care full time while rehabbing Peebs was super, super stressful. There was one point a couple of weeks ago I was ready to throw in the towel, turn her out for rest of the summer and not mess with her till I could somehow get her back into Trainer A's program. But my regular trainer J talked me off the ledge, and then gave me a couple of great lessons. 

Pictured: a very good girl

Then the perfect storm hit; we had temps in the high 90s-low 100s for a few days, I was going out of town for a long weekend, and J would be gone for a couple of weeks moving her daughter to college. Cinder got a little over a week off, just hanging out in the pasture. I honestly expected myself to be scared shitless to get back on her, but I think the mini vacation was exactly what we both needed. Cinder came out super willing to work, and mentally I felt the same. We've had some of our best work outside of lessons this past week. 

I also reached out to Trainer A and while originally we had talked about me hauling up to her for lessons, it looks like she'll be able to come to us. We're still trying to coordinate schedules, but hopefully we can find time this weekend!

Thursday, August 12, 2021

Rehabbin'

 Peebs' rehab has been going really well. He's handled stall rest and hand walking fantastically. The only day I wished I had drugs for him was when they were harvesting the grass seed field next door and his brain left his head when he saw all the combines and tractors. I really wish I knew who chased him with a tractor so I could beat the shit out of them. 

 

I did put a stud chain on only because he'd try to snack on everything and anything during our walks and would drag me around. I never had to really use the chain; him wearing it was enough to reinstall manners.

 I was naughty and rode him a couple of times instead of hand walking. I rode sans saddle (not using the "b" word in case the bots decide it's too risque) and he was a perfect gentleman. I mean, how many horses could have over two months off, on stall rest, and you can hop on sans saddle and ride around on the buckle? Best boy ever.

He had his recheck ultrasound this week and we got cleared to start real under saddle work and to trot. We'll start with 5mins a week, and add 5mins/week till we get to 40mins of trot. Then we'll reultrasound again. Of course we're in a heat wave this week and I have zero desire to ride in 100+ weather or at 5am before work, and I'm going out of town this weekend, so we'll start our trot work next week. I highly doubt Peebs cares. He also got the ok for some small paddock turnout time, so he'll get that while I'm gone. And since it's on grass, I'm fairly positive he'll spend his time eating instead of cavorting around.