Monday, January 3, 2011

Twenty Eleven

It's super corny to make goals for the new year (everyone does it and gets all gung ho for a month), since I believe in making goals all year round or having "rough goals" (ones that shouldn't make you stress like crazy to achieve). Goals should be things that are attainable so one doesn't get discouraged, but also a titch challenging to make the task 'goal worthy'. So without much more delay my so called goals for 2011 are...(Drumroll please)

*Acquire a rig. Mesa need bad...if I am to show at all this summer and not let ANOTHER season go to ridiculous, useless, bactracking waste, then I need to find a truck and trailer ASAP. Not only for shows, but if Yankee gets hurt I need to be able to take him to a vet if trailering is a possibility. Plus, it just gives me freedom to get off the farm and go school elsewhere and, GASP, take lessons! What a novel idea..
* Give Yankee more pasture time. Horse thrive on pasture, its a known fact and common sense. Horses are natural grazers and wanderers and to pin them up in small paddocks and stalls is against their nature. Yankee is always happier when he is outside in a pasture. Right now, he has small 'pasture' (I think maybe half and acre paddock that used to have grass) and a smaller, gravel paddock as well as a wonderfully large stall. Granted I love where we board and I feel super lucky to be there, but when spring rolls around I need my boy in a pasture..with grass. He is a big thoroughbred that was born to run and be free (emotionally and physically), and right now (partly because of a little thrush and winter pasture limitations as well as scheduling with the workers..) he is limited to his paddocks. He is getting grumpy. Must talk to Cheryl.

*Keep Yanks feet healthy! Stupid, tiny, fragile thoroughbred feet. I've been giving him Biotin everyday to help with this and regular, good, farrier work. Hope to keep this up! Sadly, he is prone to thrush and breakage (if no shoes kept on), but we are trying! I tried barefoot and that was a disaster! took about 4 months to repair the damage...

*(Dressage Foundations) Continue throughness over back, active hindquarters, and steady connection in the bridle, TRY to overcome the head wagging in canter we always get marked down for. Cheryl revolutionized the way I think about dressagein ways I could barely describe on the internet. I plan to continue through the training scale and further develop in our dressage! As for the head wagging, I've always been told by judges its just a head set we have and not a true connection, but when I give the reins he always seeks contact, leading me to think its just a bad habit from the racetrack...hmmm.

* (
Dressage Movements) Master side pass at trot, extended trot, counter canter, flying changes and start working on half passes and doubtfully tempi changes. With as well as our school the other day went, I am uber confident that this goal will be acheived to some (or all) success! Side pass at the trot we already have, but not well at all-it lacks quite a bit of straightness, activity and cross step. We also have the extended trot idea, but Yankee is prone to rushing, rather than lifting and extending the legs...I know he can do it as I've seen him in the pasture! As for the counter canter- we have 2 steps, but thats all he has strength for. MORE! Flying changes we've done exactly 4 times, practice! practice! Half pass and tempi changes take A LOT of strength, which I hope to achieve, but this will be on my 'rough goals' list.

*(Jumping XC) CONSISTENT courses. Meaning no random ass refusals. Yankee is so weird, he loves jumping and is fearless but sometimes he gets a fairy in his head that makes him go coo-coo and he refuses. So Stooopid. My horse normally feels solid as a brick house underneath me and goes like a freight train on a course, however every once in a blue moon he will get all jello like and act like a pogo stick, then BAM, refuse. We must get over this as it is preventing us from moving up to Preliminary!!!! UGH

* (Jumping, Stadium) Keep those feetsies off the fences. This is mostly my fault..I have a maaaassive problem of throwing myself up Yankee's neck (wish I could find some pictures of a show this summer. They were quite drastic, by far the worst stadium ride of my life, but here's the website if anyone wants to see MAJOR FAIL- Now granted, there were some good fences, but mostly bad) and throwing him off balance. Been working on that though! See 'SHOCKER' post.

* Attend as many shows (USEA and jumper/dressage) as financially possible. I plan on getting a second job this summer to help with the whole poor college student thing.

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