Thursday, February 20, 2020

The Forbidden Bromance

Peebs is generally a friendly horse. He tend to like everyone and everything and is happy going up to new horses and saying hi. That said, he can be an asshole and tend to be top dog in herd dynamics. Mainly he wants to play or say hi to the other horses and then is all about grazing and will get pissy when other horses *cough Cinder cough* want to keep playing.

All day, every day
 Blue, a mid-twenties Paint, is the herd boss at TCF.  He was born on a ranch in Colorado, and is the type warhorse who has seen some shit and doesn't put up with anything. He's a pretty benevolent leader, but isn't afraid to lay one on someone *cough Cinder cough* when they need to be put in their place. When he and Peebs were put out together in the big field last summer, there was a brief pissing match, then they seemed to basically ignore each other. Peebs bossed Cinder around while Blue ran herd on Giz (the other retired twentysomething QH) while Scottie floated between the two groups.

Blue acting all tough and Peebs gives no shits

A couple of weeks ago A and I were doing barn chores and moving somethings around and I put Peebs out with just Blue in one of the smaller paddocks. It was the first time they had been out with just the two of them, and the first time out together since Peebs had moved back. There was some initial squealing and striking from Blue but then they seemed to calm down. I went back to cleaning, poking my head out a few times to watch. I have no idea what clicked between the two of them, but they quickly became Bros4Lyfe. They were deeply involved in a game of bitey face and Blue was acting like a three year old instead of a 23 year old. When I went to bring them in for dinner, they took off and wouldn't let me catch them. Peebs is normally first at the gate at dinner time and it took A and I 10 minutes and a bucket of grain before we could catch them. Peebs has never chosen play over food before.

Ok, maybe he gives some shits

They were turned out together with the others later that week, and basically spent all day playing together. They play bite face, squeal, strike, kick, and go after each other. Two blankets have been destroyed in the process and both boys have multiple nicks on them. The day I took these pics Blue, Scottie, and Peebs were out together.  Obviously Blue and Peebs were involved in their own little world while Scottie was standing at the gate imploring me to get him out of there. They had been out for 8 hours and according to A's mom, had been doing that all day.

30 seconds after this they were back to bite face

We've since separated the two of them, since replacing blankets is expensive. And while I don't think they'd intentionally hurt each other, I don't want this game to get any worse.  We're tentatively planning on putting them back together this summer in the big field, once everyone's not wearing blankets anymore. 

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Tuesday Night Light

A few weeks ago a light got installed at one end of the arena. Because of how the property is set up, they were only able to trench and run wire to the end closest to the barn so that's where the light is. In order to run wire to the other end of the arena, a trench would have to go down the center line. Both A and I agreed it wasn't worth destroying the arena base and footing.  Thankfully the light they got is super bright and a second one really isn't needed.

I hadn't ridden under the light until our lesson last night, but I have lunged Peebs with it. In true Peebs fashion, he didn't care about it at all and didn't give any shits about the shadows or the dark end.  He did have a ton of energy and bolted after trotting our second cross rail. My trainer said she could see it coming and once I got him stopped she told me to get off so we could lunge him. I halfheartedly thought about riding through it, but decided I like living and having unbroken limbs, so I agreed. I hopped off and tied up my reins and stirrups and let him rip. My trainer shook the lunge whip at Peebs once and he spent the next five minutes trying out for the Kentucky Derby.

Much saner Peebers
Once he got his brain reinstalled, he was much more his usual self. We trotted two single cross rails on the diagonals before doing a bending line between the two of them. I had told my trainer I set them with the intent of doing the bending line and that I wanted to more of a boomerang shape to continue working on getting him off my inside leg and not letting him fall to the inside. There was a much more direct, straight line between the two fences, but I was going for more of an equitation line rather than a jump off line.

We ended up going both directions on the line and Peebs was perfect, it a little lazy. I was able to keep him out and only kinda sorta let him fall in once. Hopefully he got all his crazies out last night and we can continue to school this line later in the week.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020


I haven't been doing much with Cinder this winter. First, while Peebs was at GS I didn't have time/energy/daylight to get to both barns everyday and mess with Cinder. She was still getting handled daily and turned out, so I wasn't too worried. I'd pull her out 2-3 times a week and groom and do some ground work. Then her feet got shitty and she went through a growth spurt where her back resembled that of a dachshund, her neck was like a giraffe, and she skinny and gangly AF. I took her blanket off as little as possible during that time. No one needs to see that.

That looks a bit better

Peebs got his stifles injected on Friday so he had the weekend off. That meant it was time for Cinder to go back to "work". I pulled her out Saturday and we did a little groundwork/lunging in the arena before I let her loose to play. She was very concerned about the puddles and showed off her princess status by refusing to set a hoof in them.

She didn't see this one till the last minute and had to scramble to avoid it. 

Yesterday I tacked her up for the first time in a few months. She was totally fine with it and we did maybe about 5 mins of lunging before she decided she was done. Cin's not one to roll in the arena, she normally only prefers to roll in her stall and shavings, but for the first time ever she tried to go down with my saddle on her. She got her front legs folded and on the ground before I could get her up. She got called very bad names and poked with the end of the lunge whip.

She has no shame
I've started talking with the trainer I hope to send her to and she thinks she'll have room to take her in May. I can't wait to send her off to training and let her be someone else's problem get her real training going!

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Back in the Groove

Peebs has been at TCF for almost two weeks now and we've been getting back in the groove and feeling great. The one down side to TCF is that they only have an outdoor arena. But I'll take that outdoor any day over GS' indoor. GS had super dusty footing and I couldn't leave jumps set up. TCF has great sand that holds up to all the rain and I can set any jump/pole exercises I want. Peebs and I have already jumped more in the past two weeks than we did all of January.

I set up these poles on Saturday and have practiced over them three times now! No more setting something and only getting to school it once
Our local shows have finally started posting their schedules for this year and I'm tentatively making our show schedule. I'd really, really like to qualify for this years local medal finals so that's what we're working towards.  Medal finals are the end of August and to qualify to have to get 10 points or show and complete the course in 3 qualifying classes. So working backwards, I'm planning on 4 shows to get my 3 qualifiers. One in April (my birthday weekend), maybe one in May (dates are still tentative), one in June and one in July. There is a show the weekend before finals in August, but I really don't want to have to do the last chance qualifier. And I'd really have to up both Peebs and my fitness if we show back to back weekends.

You don't get these views riding inside
I'm excited to get back to showing, and having a goal to work towards. And Peebs is definitely happy to get back to jumping instead of boring flat work al the time!