Monday, November 30, 2015

Dressage stuff

In what feels like a lifetime ago Aimee came over and took some pictures of Prisoner and I, then I went and took pictures of her...and we thought we were cold.  HAHAHAHAHA!  Whatever the temp was then would feel balmy now.  Oh Idaho.  My phone informed me that the high tomorrow would be significantly warmer than today, 28 degrees, actually phone I don't appreciate hearing about how 28 degrees is warm.
This is what we do when it is less than 20 degrees
In all reality I would ride in these temps, except it rained while the temps dropped and the arena resembles concrete currently.  Fingers crossed the forecast doesn't change for the worse as right now it is saying that riding could happen on Wednesday.
How was this a week ago???
So back to our great dressage ride!
Black bridle, brown reins, I need to remedy this
 We played with wrap liners and decided that Prisoner is too much of a pony for them to look good.  He seriously has the shortest front cannons.
Yeah, I've got all the colors
 I warmed him up with lots of changes of direction in a stretchy trot, he really loves powering around.
Vroom vroom
 After he was feeling loosened up I added in some leg yield and shoulder in.  He is slowly starting to understand this concept, but I am working to get him more supple about it.  I would like him to move looser and freer in the side to side stuff.
Solid three tracks
 I hope that as we gain more suppleness all around that he will track up easier.  That is definitely currently his most weak dressage thing.  I almost think it is a bit confirmational, like his legs are too short to reach each other in the trot.  Tudor has long legs for days and tracks up with out even trying and even has a somewhat weak hind end.
But who care, he has the cutest face
 It ended up being probably one of our best flat schools.  Short, sweet, and to the point, Prisoner just seemed to understand the job.
Love the bend from nose to tail
 One thing that has seen significant improvement over the last few months have been our trot to walk transitions.  He used to just throw his head in the air, right at that last moment as the trot turns into walk.  The solution has been keeping him thinking forward and straight through the transition.  Now when we have a bad trot to walk transition we can blame it all on me.
Pretty horse, fugly riding
 All of his other transitions are pretty spot on.  We get the correct canter lead 99% of the time and his is willing for upward and downward between gaits and within the gaits.
Point those toes
 He actually has a very powerful trot that throws me around if I'm not careful, possibly I need to do some planking or something.  Maybe that would fix what ever the heck it is that I'm doing here:
Just no
 Seriously though, how cute is my horse??
Notice the silver tail
 Side note from the dressaging, his tail is not dirty in these pictures, those are white hairs you see.  I swear he is trying to grow a trendy silver tail.
Short fat pony legs...and human legs
 He still leans in a bit at the canter, but not bad for being 15 months off the track.
Please come back thawed arena
 He has a very fun canter to ride, he is willing to collect for small circles or to go big around the arena.  After we canter his trot always gets better.
 I like my position in half of these pictures and in the other half I can hear my dressage trainer's Swiss accented voice telling me to sit on my back pockets.  My plan is to actually get in for some dressage lessons towards the end of December or in January.
There we go
 I look forward to those sore dressage lesson muscles, they are so satisfying.
Swooning at how his neck is developing
 I have been working to push my hands towards him so that he reaches for the bridle and builds a better topline, but I need to watch that I don't drop the contact.
Sitting up better
 I also need to spend more time in the canter.  I am bad about a few good circles each way and calling it a day.  I need to make use of all those coolers I have from race wins!
Work that boot P-Diddy
 He stands up a bit better to the right, but he struggles more to turn.
Wild mane!
 Our goals for next year are to break into the 20's at our events and if the budget permits maybe hit up some dressage shows.

Should have worn my spurs
 I love his willingness to try new things.  This summer he struggled with body soreness, but in the last month or two it hasn't flared up at all!
Whoops, too bent
 Can I just say that I love how curvy he is!?  He really isn't fat at all, he is just building up some great muscles.
Reasons they need joint support
 In case you are wondering why I am sporting nearly rust colored breeches?  They are warm and fleecy and wind proof, that's why.
Favorite canter shot from the day
 Check out that hind leg reach!
Favorite trot shot
There you have it, dressage stuff.

Saturday, November 28, 2015


The four legged variety.  Most years we have one or two beautiful Thoroughbred babies.  It is so fun to watch them grow and then train and race them, and then finally get them all set up for a second career.  This year we have a chestnut filly (Mckenna Warrior) and a bay colt (Baby Blakers).  Mckenna is out of a plain bay mare who has produced two plain bay colts and a plain bay stallion.  She looks like this:

One month old
 Swoon!  So here are a bunch pictures of this year's babies.

Baby Blakers already being sassy

About a week old here, born the end of March

The day Mckenna was born, mid April

Fluffy baby

Laughing our way through July

Getting rid of that baby coat

Typical siblings

The whole herd in September

Cover of Bloodhorse anyone?

Can I haves her?

She is giant!

Blakers just wants cookies

Big babies (the hubs is 6')
Pretending to be a Quarter Horse

Snuggle time

Winter coat is THICK!

Apparently her new favorite pose

Nap time for Blakers
So there you have it, babies babies babies!  I have more pictures I need to find and organize.  Seriously though we are going to have to figure out some sort of epic battle to decide who gets Mckenna when she is done racing, because hello gorgeous!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Yep, I'm going there

Thanksgiving sappiness.  Because why not.  Also baked goods, because yum.
Moar pie
Yesterday it snowed, and stuck everywhere but at my barn and house.  Now you might think 'yay you can still ride!'  But, yeah not so much, the arena is now totally saturated and the temperature dropped over night, so think frozen block of sand instead.  Now is the time to practice lateral work in hand I believe.  Really though, now is the time to remember blessings.
This horse

Baby horses

Baby lambs

Did I mention this horse
This guy
More things I am thankful for?  My parents, my friends, my house, my dog, my cats, my health, my memories, my future.  I hope you are all able to do something fun today and eat something tasty.  Thanksgiving isn't really about the big turkey or stuffing or cranberries.  It is about remembering the things we have instead of focusing on what we don't have.  It is about making new memories and savoring the old ones.
Time to cook
And who knows about what really happened on that first Thanksgiving (hello folklore gone wild), but I really like the idea of adventurers in a new land meeting new people and having a party.  I know this can be tough time for people who are feeling alone, I encourage them to volunteer, or cook a meal for other lonely people.  Make treats and bring it to the people who have to work.  Be thankful that you have the ability to give.
Last year's pies
Anyways, I hope you all have a wonderful day, eat til that top button is tight, and laugh until your sides hurt.