Saturday, April 7, 2012

Riding Naked



OK I didn't QUITE ride naked today, but it was pretty close.

Okay, no it wasn't. But I did forget to strap the girls down before I headed out to ride. How does one forget that essential undergarment you ask? Well, I was sitting at home all day in my PJs and hoodie doing homework till barn time, and I simply switched pants and left. Oops. I guess I was excited to practice my SECOND level test today for the show next weekend!!

(In case you were wondering, sitting the trot for the better part of 40 minutes, sans bra is....unfortunate)

I digress.

If you all did know yet, I have a show next weekend. Originally, Jackie was supposed to ride in it, but she has a wedding or something to go to. So, Saturday I ride 3 dressage tests (USDF Training-2nd level), and Sunday I have a training level CT (USEA).

It's a schooling show (wicked cheap too-4 classes for under $90) and I'm taking that opp. to do 3 tests up the levels. 2nd level looked legit and I'm REALLY stoked to see how he does. It'll be his 3rd test, so hopefully by then he will be a bit more settled. I wanted to run through that test a few times today since
a) I hate having readers-they distract me and I wanted to memorize it
b) I'd never strung together all the 2nd level movements

We pretty much looked like this...



...And this...


OH WE FANCY NOW HUH?!

Haha, well, it felt like that to me. He was SO perfect. Can I just tell you all that I never would have dreamed of this day? Ever? For an OTTB to almost flawlessly (in my mind) execute some pretty legit movements like...

-shoulder in
-simple changes through walk
-walk to canter
-collected canter
-collected trot
-medium gaits
-counter canter

...is mind blowing for me. OK OK, He's not ever going to be Grand Prix material but to ME, it is a massive milestone! No anxiety, crooked neck, no trotting or cantering in place. GAH :D

I just hope he can KIT (keep it together) for the show.

Fingers Crossed.

Last but not least, THANK YOU for your opinions on turnout! I loved hearing them :) Also, we've reached 70 followers and over 26, 000 visits. Love you guys!

Friday, April 6, 2012

The Age Old Question

I want your answers, my dear readers! What do you do for turnout?

Recently, I have been perplexed with people's choice of turnout for their horses and judged quite harshly for mine. I'm simply wondering what everyone in the blogging community does and why they do so, because I am curious to hear the answers!

I have seen every type of turnout there is, and the effect of each. What drives me crazy is the people who think there is one formula that works for every horse, no matter the situation, which is totally not true!

For example: My horses-past and present

Yankee:

In the fall/winter, he goes out during the day, and stays in at night. During the summer/spring, I flip it. Several reasons why he is only on half days, but still goes outside for at least 12 hours. I tried the 24/7 turnout but because he lived almost 4 years of his life 100% of the time in a stall, he found being outside too hard of a transition. Even now, if he is out all day, he paces the gate halfway through, wanting to come in. He needs to be outside, but doesn't like it all the time-which is what works for him.

In the summer, I keep him in during the day because he is a big baby and hates the sun as much as I do. Also, for cosmetic reasons, sunburn. He is quite happy hanging in his stall in front of 2 fans all day, and going out when it is cooler. In winter, I flip it, because again, he is a baby and hates being out at night when the temperature drops.

I feel extremely guilty keeping him in for more than 10 hours, so even if he is injured or he can;t go ot at night because of storms, I open his door so he can stretch his legs in a paddock. This system works for us!

Zephyr:

Tiny pony is like any other pony and gets wicked fat off just grass. So, miss hairy beast stays on a dry lot in spring, when the grass is thick, and goes out the rest of the year 24/7. In winter she gets loads of hay and in spring she gets hay as well. She doesn't need grain.

Spirit:

This guy was always outside, but always had the option of an open stall to come in if he wanted. He was literally terrified of black mats, so stalls weren't his favorite thing, even with deep bedding. Even in summer, he was quite happy hanging out outside. I wish I had photos of when miss Dolly would be in her shaded stall with a fan, while Spirit hung out right out by her door, in the sun, happy as could be. Sometimes in winter I stalled him if it was really cold or icy because he would fall in ice and had a hard time maintaining weight when it was cold, but otehrwise he was blanketed and outside in winter.

Miss Dolly:

She HATED being outside and she got extremely fat off just grass as well, so she had minimal turnout time on grass. In summer she refused to go outside during the day, even though I kept her door open. She was a big princess and had to have her fan and shade or else she would be quite grumpy. Same in winter, she preferred to just ahng out inside. Weird horse. She always had the option of going outside, since I left her door open. Funny thing is, when I shut her in, she would throw a fit. Horses, so weird.

What I don't understand is people who leave horses out 24/7 even in 110 degree heat when they obviously are miserable from heat and flies. Bring the poor horses in! When they are at the gate, begging, tormented by flies and dripping in sweat! Blows my mind that some people think horses are ALWAYS happier when they are out. Yes, horses are meant to be outside, but sometimes they need to come in. I vowed I would never keep Yankee inside more than 12 hours because horses weere meant to roam about. But when the elements are too extreme and they are suffering, obviously something needs to be done. Am I crazy or do you guys agree?

Also, I will NEVER get those crazy owners who trap their horses indoors 24/7. Not once have I seen a horse be happy in this situation. It is pointless and cruel to keep a GRAZER indoors in a box stall, only to come out for maybe 1 hour a day to be worked. Just beacuase you are "afraid" they will get hurt doesn't mean they need to be stalled all the time. There are tons of ways to mitigate risk of injury in turnout. I get it when people need to keep horses in because of injury, but that is temporary-usually. Keeping a horses stalled because you are afraid they will lose shoes is ridiculous! GAH. WHy does this drive me so crazy? Because perfectly healthy horses go sour being stalled that much and I hate seeing that.

So, what do you guys do?

POll here If you guys don't want to comment. I forgot to add an inbetween option, oops :/

Thursday, April 5, 2012

OH LAWDY!

I wish more than ever, that I was loaded. (Hilarious off topic remark, I was accused of being a spoiled rich brat on SnarkyRiders post simply because I have a blog that "brags and boasts my every move". That is so laughable I can't even summon words.)

Anyways, Prepare yourself to mega swoon...


HOLY SEXINESS BATMAN.

I don't believe I have EVER seen a Thoroughbred as nice as this fellow. Even my Yankee. Sorry bud.

He is perfect. Just absolutely perfect. Deep chest, powerful quarters, short back, clean legs, good angles...and SHINY!

Oh the shiny!!

Also he is 16.3 and a 2007 model. PERFECT. Perfect.

Unfortunately, no price was listed and some people have already offered a tax deductible amount of $10,000. Why does this always happen to me? I can never find the perfect horse.

(Granted, I have my Yankee and love him very much, but I am not competent enough to take him as high as he is capable, I feel much better training a horse up to Prelim and selling them. Judge me if you want)

I hate everything.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Revamped Energy

Whoa dude, haters gonna hate. That was blown out of proportion... Did I do that? ;) Gotta love it.

At least my BFF lessee came to my defense and was much more eloquent than me, since she wasn't blinded by rage. If you would like to see what I am talking about, see previous post.

I may have made myself seem like a raging immature dickhead, but I don't care. I'm sorry I go off on childish rampages on my blog, I'm only 21 for Christ sake. In no way shape or form do I feel like an adult. In fact, the real world scares the shit out of me so much, I daydream of returning to preschool and taking nappy naps and eating snacky snacks. My name and image is all I have in this world. Needed to be said.

All this internet bitching is giving me the gusto to blog about my ride yesterday on the ponyface!

ANWAYS! Yesterday le Jackie and le me tacked up the Pronto and the Yankee for a bitty jump school. Jackie convinced me to continue riding him in the hackamore since she said he was brilliant in it last time she jumped. HOKAY, if you say so.

Her goal with Pronto was to get his whompy ass over everything, ha. In which she succeeded! We set up a lovely course with loopy turns and some less than challenging jumps.

Pronto was an angel :) I credit Jackie for her no-nonsense riding style and her no tolerance for pony bullshit. I think he got the message and happily jumped everything after one stern talking to. Gotta love the monster!




RARWR!


Jackie learning that keeping a solid lower leg on The Monster is easier said than done

Proceed to Jackie schooling me on how to ride my horse :P

I love her style. Coming from a Grand Prix BG she knows her stuff and her help always makes us shine! Yankee seems to have found his love in the hackamore, and I plan to test it out next weekend at the CT we are doing. If any of your remember, I tried him in it last year and it was a major fail. Not sure why he has taken a liking to it!




CAn we just say that it is ABSURD that it was 90 degrees yesterday in APRIL. Luckily the ring was shaded.

Also...Hannah jumped Yankee!!!! SAY what?? I was so proud of her :) I thought it was fair, since Jackie jumped her horse. Horse musical chairs! Yankee is literally one of the easiest horses to jump, especially if you just sit there. Which I told her to do.



I told her it was vital to her survival to jump him more often! HA. Really though.

WOW, F**K you too.

**WARNING: Language. Legit Pissed.**

So I wasn't going to post for a few days because I am feeling quit lackluster with the death of Spirit. However, a friend emailed me about a post on SnarkyRider that basically bashed the f**king shit out of me. I just adore her self righteous bullshit banter, sticking her nose in my personal business/life and giving her opinion on matters she has NO knowledge of whatsoever. LOVE.
Link
Offended? Hell yes. Bitchfit? Hell yes. Call me immature for bitching on the internet? Sure, isn't that what personal blogs are for? Also, I don't care who sees this. I am not OK with what she did.

I LOVE Fuglyblog but what the f**k SnarkyRider? I get it, you're snarky. So am I. You bitch about things that piss you off/annoy you/ are wrong/abusive. That, my friend, I am not.

This is the picture she posted on her blog of me on my mini, Zephyr:


She proceeded to call me an uneducated asshat who mistreats horses. WOW, fantastic job Snarky Rider. You know nothing of the situation. NOTHING. Shall I inform you?

Let me explain to you Snarkybitch. You say a person should never ride a mini who looks like that? Yeah she does look pretty pissed, but a little BG info for you. She was pastured with my TB, Yankee and a cow my family owns. I hadn't seen her in over 6 months because I go to college in MO. I also had recently gotten severely injured, so they had to wait till they could come to Missouri, until I could walk without crutches. Anyways, she hates the cow, but this was our dry lot, as she cannot have much grass (note big belly), which was why they were together. He was coming up behind her, thus her ears were back. She IS a pony and quite the bitch towards things she dislikes. ALSO, I have flip flops on from said surgery/injury. YOU try wearing boots over an injury. Also, I sat on her for 30 seconds. THIRTY. I do this often, since its fun, and I hope one day to have my future children ride her. She in NO WAY SHAPE OR FORM has issues holding me. AT ALL. Please though, continue to tell me how much of a horrible person I am for loving on my animals after an extended absence and PLEASE pardon the fact that the second this photo was snapped, devil cow was coming up behind me.

Gaze your judgmental eyes upon this, my friend. She is fine. And not pissed.

Please for the love of god, get your information straight before you judge the shit out of people. I do not appreciate being paraded around the internet, made to look like a complete douchebag. Ask anyone who knows me and my horses. They are well cared for and spoiled beyond belief. I would never do anything to harm them, including riding my mini around. Sitting on her, however, is not an issue.

I would also like to point out that the second picture you posted was of an extremely overweight woman, legitimately riding that poor mini around. THAT my friend is abuse. Straight up. How dare you compare me to that person. In no way was Zephyr under stress or abused.

Thanks.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Remembering the Wonder Pony

Last night a good friend of mine FB messaged me the saddest news that could have come to me at this moment in time. Nothing wrenched my heart like this. Not my lack of money and knowing what my future will hold. Not the death of my two previous dogs, Pepper and Tonka. Not getting my heart broken in high school.

My beautiful eventing pony, Spirit, has to be euthanized this past weekend. Seeing as it was Aprils fools day, I thought for a second she was messing with me, but I knew that she wouldn't kid about something like that.

My first ride on him as his official owner

I just collapsed and broke down. Call me crazy, but every single sweet memory came flooding back to me, and to think my courageous pony was gone forever was too much to bear. All my worries, fears and sadness came crashing down and I just cried and cried. I cried till I ran out of tears.

Spirit was my perfect horse. Perfect even in his flaws. He was stubborn and hated trailering and black mats. He sucked at dressage. He had a huge head. His butt was tiny. But even with all that, he had the heart to overcome his past and learned to love and trust me. After a few years, he hopped on the trailer by himself. He jumped anything, ANYTHING, I pointed him at. He let me ride him around bareback with no halter. I sat on his back in the pastures while he grazed. I cried into his mane when I was sad. We won everything and he made me feel special. He was my best friend and my heart horse. Never again will I know a creature like him.


Our last training level together

Eventually after all our fun, I grew tall. I had to sell him. He was getting arthritic and I was too big for him to jump comfortably. His life was competing, and I couldn't take that from him. I sold him to an older lady who used him for Foxhunting and leased him to Brittney, who showed him for a few years. He taught her how to ride and took care of her like he took care of me. Admittedly, I was jealous she got to have him when I couldn't. But then I realized he was still doing what he loved most and enriched another girls life, just as he had mine.


XC schooling



Our very first event together (3 pictures)



My favorite picture

I loved that we were the same age. I will always remember that he was 12 when I got him, and 17 when I sold him. He was 21 when he died. His past was uncertain, but I know he wasn't treated well. He was barely broke to ride, dehydrated, underweight, had mysterious scars and refused (REFUSED-took us 6 hours) to get in the trailer. Nevertheless, I convinced my parents I needed this Anglo-Arab I found in the classifieds in the Dayton Daily News.


Winning everything at the Green Co. 4-H fair

We had quite the ride together! He taught me how to jump and I taught him dressage. Our first show was a disaster. My worst dressage score to date...a 70. HAHAHA. God, I will always remember THAT disaster. Eventually though, we became unbeatable. He was the best jumper I have ever ridden, and being a pony, he could easily jump 5ft. He stunned everyone with his ability, and had a tendency to "lock" onto jumps. We actually got disqualified from one event because he took a prelim jump when we were only doing novice, HA.


Triple bar madeness at a Darren Chiacchia clinic


First jumper show








Britt and Spirit at a show


Briit and the old man in her Senior pictures. How adorable :D

The following are all of him and Britt, he was between 17-20 years of age






His last show.

I will always love him with all my heart. I just can't believe he is gone.

I love you Spirit. Forever my sweet, talented pony <3

Where in this wide world can man find nobility without pride,
Friendship without envy,
Or beauty without vanity?
Here, where grace is served with muscle
And strength by gentleness confined
He serves without servility; he has fought without enmity.
There is nothing so powerful, nothing less violent.
There is nothing so quick, nothing more patient.
~Ronald Duncan, "The Horse," 1954
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