Saturday, February 12, 2011

Jumping Win

You heard it, great jumping today!

I really think that 2 weeks off did him well :)

We did some gridwork and 2 stride combo and video recorded it for my app. to Equine Affaire.

I'm not gonna say much more because I am still working on the vids for EA as well and I have massive amounts of HW...but here are some pics!

My position still needs major work, but that's why I am applying to EA.

I really let him just JUMP today. I didn't nit-pick with his stride or try to get the right leads on landing I just let him jump....turned out well :)


Yeah this was a beast to set up by took me 40 minutes and I sweat like a mofo. They are HEAVY. Adn I had to drag it all from a shed... Then again it was 50 degrees today so that was like a heatwave compared to -2 to 10 regular temps the past week.

Warm up

4th jump in the grid

2nd jump of the 2 stride

2nd jump of 2 stride

4th jump of grid

H and Pronto

He is such a cutey :D

All in all, fantastic jump day :)

Friday, February 11, 2011

Photo Update

Our ride today was pretty much the same as yesterday, but with a little more work extension wise.
To summarize, as yesterday, warmed up with laterals, and stretching.
I continued the work I did yesterday, solid outside rein soft half halting when appropriate inside rein. Clean transitions, suppleness, calm.
Extensions weren't great, they never are under saddle, but we are getting there!
Afterwards we went for a little jaunt outside in the deep snow before it melts this weekend.
Great ride again :D
Jumping with H tomorrow (filming for my equine affair application)

Walk stretch

Some awkward looking trot stretch

Fuzzy vid stills of our 'extensions'...

...They need work, but they aren't hateful...

.....I'd like to see more lift but I'll take the extension we are getting...

"Hey mom this snow is reeeeally high..."

Minus the snow this would be an epic trot...too bad we can't do dressage tests in foot deep snow!

Speaking of Equine Affair...I FINALLY figured out how to edit videos, so Dressager, you won't have to do it for me! YAY! I will upload vids as soon as I send them out.
Wish me luck, I will be working on the application all weekend.

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Today was a nice ride of epic proportions :)
I wore my breeches and tall socks with winter boots at class and on campus all day. I swear, breeches=so comfy=live in all day. I don't know why it is underlining my type...I can't get it to stop. Pout. Anways, went stright from class to the barn. It was a great feeling to finally get there with enough light in the day to not feel blah.

The goal for the day was relaxation and throughness through his back with well executed transitions.

I had to snap this picture, he looks so ridiculously (cute) I couldn't resist. What face is that :P?

The boots I use on a regular basis, remember my boot post?

So, to recap the extraordinary ride.

I began with no lunging, since I had limited time to spare (extra amounts of homework...I just pumped out a tough paper in less than 2 hours, did my spanish HW and studied for the exam tomorrow, and did my lab for comm class...but I still feel guilty for even posting this tonight...). Stretchy walky began the ride, along with some stretchy trots and limbering lateral work both directions. He was SO relaxed and so willing to seek contact I was like 9's in dressage here I come! I could not believe the overstep we achieved and how swingy his back was.

I tried new things tonight that really helped and began to cement some cues for us.

Firstly, I used a heavier outside rein, meaning extra contact, not pulling, but soft, direct contact and a lighter inside, half halting when appropriate, rein. I felt I really had a hold of his mouth but it was great because....he LOVED it. He really just clicked tonight, like holy-hell-this-is-what-you-have-been-teaching-me-for-five-years-now. And DAMN did he connect, I felt like I actually had a solid dressage horse under me. I didn't feel he was sucked back in the bit and trotting up and down or walking up and down but reaaaaaally WTC through his back, and back into my hands. I felt like I had SOMETHING. Not a wavering little OTTB who couldn't engage and be really into the contact. Wonderful feeling indeed :) The half halts were perfectly executed when I felt he needed a little more support. It was just lovely. Everytime I asked him to seek contact, he did.

Secondly I wanted to work on our transitions. Our canter departure had been extra sticky lately, and I figured out why by accident about 2 weeks ago but since I gave him time off, this was the first time I had the chance to try it out. I had been going about asking him all wrong. I used outside leg pressure and inside leg bend...and EVERYTIME he would buck or tense and come above the bit...he always would resettle but the transitions were...shit. Unacceptable. So, by accident, I discovered I was doing too much. WAAAy to much for his liking. In trying to fix a problem, I was creating one. All he wants (and needs) is my leg to move back, too many signals were frusutrating him and creating more crookedness... Simple as that, no pressure, no rein change, no seat change. Curious, since I trained him with all those cues but I am guessing since he is no longer a hyper naive racehorsey crazyface he doe snot need all those cues to help him canter. He knows, by years of repition that leg back means canter. A-DOI. That was retarded on my part. Us riders are so stupid sometimes.

Thirdly, I tried a new way to ask for sidepass. Since he was liking the solid contact on the outside rein, I decided to try this concept with lateral movement. Since he likes that pressure, why not 'change rein' right before asking for sidepass and then ask. Like If I am traveling counterclockwise, and I want to sidepass left, i switch rein from Right outside to Left 'outside' and half halt the new inside rein slightly. He completely understood this way better than keeping the initial inside rein. Hard to explain unless you see it or feel it in action, but he went "OH YEAH, I CAN SIDEPASS ALL SEXY LIKE". It was great!

The only bad part of the lesson is when barn worker began cleaning off the drive to the manure spreader (FINALLY!) which is right outside the arena. Yanks did not appreciate the loud scraping sounds of death that screeched nasty devil whispers to my little yankee ears. It apparently freaked him out a little and he went galloping, snorting, crow hopping across the arena in the opposite direction. Almost unseated me since he rarely spooks at anything besides imaginary ghosty goblins in the woods. HAHA. He settled after that initial spook but was still a little wary and not totally soft the rest of the time so I got a nice stretchy trot and called it a day.

Looks liek time off was the right idea :D

Our XC colors! This is his undersheet,, since it is approx. 0 degrees tonight.

This weekend 50s can't be...

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Equine Affaire Ohio

I NEED HELP! helphelphelphelp!

I am sending applications in to ride in Equine Affaire this year and I just thought of doing so TODAY. Apps are due the 21st of this month. ACK!

I had not planned on applying since it is 8hrs away in Ohio ( I am in Missouri) and mom has my Ohio...
BUT I got an offer to represent New Vocations (the OTTB rescue I adopted Yankee from) for the eventing OTTB in the TB breed demos. Hell to the YA.

The demos are only 15 min and I would hate to drive 8+hrs to do JUST the demos, so I am applying to do some jumping clinics. I would like to work with Neal Shapiro on "Diagnosing/Fixing Jumper Problems" as well as "Improving Form Over Fences". I am also applying (in case I don't get accepted with Neal) to Daniel Stewarts clinic "The Stride: Jumping well under pressure and stress in the show ring". If I get accepted to the breed demos, I get half off clinic prices wich are already WICKED cheap. FTW!~

Anyways, I need to know what you people use to edit vids. I simply do not know! PLEASE FEED ME INFO!
If I get accepted into these clinics I am one step closer to getting my name and my horse out there and seen by TONS of people. I rode in Equine Affaire a few years ago with Spirit in a Darren Chiacchia Clinic and I was blown way by how many people loved and recognized Spirit even years after, Plus I got to work with Darren for 3 days. WIN again!

Spirit and I jumping a massive fence. Darren thought it would be funny to set up a huge fence for a little pony, thinking he couldn't ( since I was being a snark and 'bragging' a little about how he could jump, Darren was not impressed at the moment since Spirits flatwork was terrible) but he blew the crowd away. They literally collectively gasped. He was barely 15hh, but could jump the moon. Darren was impressed.

I would love to get accepted again but I am going to be one of the later applicants so I need to blow the selectors out of the water with my vids.

GOSH I WOULD LOVE TO RIDE AT EQUINE AFFAIRE AGAIN. And spend money and see all the pretty ponies and eat fair food and see pretty ponies and meet people and see pretty ponies.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


Had a little texting chat with R today. She works at the barn I ride/board/work as well.

Remember the post about me bitching that stalls didn't get done for 1-2 days during the snowstorm when the worker who was feeding for those days lived on the farm and didn't need to worry about getting to the barn (driving wise)?

Well, apparently things are still going awry.

Like seriously.

Everytime I feed it takes me an extra hour because the stalls are so FILTHY and bare.

Apparently everytime R feeds, it is the same scenario.

So someone is not doing their job and stalls are still not getting taken care of properly.

Right now there is still snow covering the path to A barn and B barn but people can still go through the arena that connects the barns...not a hard concept.

This pisses me off in a bad way since, a) I was getting blamed a bit for it b) I do EXTRA work everytime I go c) I am not getting the care I pay for

I don't MIND doing stalls and I don't MIND doing MY share of the work (hell I don;t even mind doing extra every once in a blue moon since it is the horses I care about). But I will not and can not stand for my horses' care (as well as others) suffering. Sure sure, horses can stand to stand in their own excrement for a day or two. But no, not when I pay as much as I do in board for exceptional care. I don't believe the barn owner owner would be happy to hear about this.

Am I going off the wall, or should I be as mad as I am about a 'little' thing like stalls not getting cleaned and not having ample enough bedding?

Sunday, February 6, 2011

It's a Montage!

OMG. I just spent an hour typing up a lovely explanation of what has gone on the past 2 days and it didn't post and I had to re do the whole thing so now I'm super pissed.

Anyways, I'm half watching the super bowl. GO PACK! At least Fergie really rocked at halftime...SARCASM. I heart Will.I am. and Usher though.

So to try and re-describe what I have done the past 2'll be shortened..gah.

I never got a hold of a westerny saddle so we didn't run barrels. sadface. I wanted to get a westerny saddle so he knew it was not ok to run around crazy liek in the arena with english tack. Another time I suppose.

Yesterday I went for a hack down the road. It was really good :) We spent about an hour just walking and trotting all relaxed like up and downhills. He was all snuggly in his half sheet and I in my hoodie and the snow covered land was absolutly gorgeous! He was super quiet and responsive, so I was happy about that. When we trotted through the field in the 2 ft deep snow, he trotted like a big ol' Grand Prix dressager. It was neato!

Today I wanted to keep going with the relaxed vibe so I lunged a little bit working on transitions and staying relaxed through them and well as extendin and collecting the trot. Pics below! I then worked a teensy weensy bit on the piaffe. He was wicked relaxed and did well. Afterwards I hopped on bareback to do a quick WTC each direction then walked him out. I was really happy with how he went today!
There is always one....

(yes those are all 4 feet off the ground)

....bad moment that is

GASP. Is that an extension? that big boy trot?? I do believe it is!

I always love his reach at the canter with that back end.

Starting to look really good. he is coming up under himself nicely.

Regular trot on the long line

This is great! I hate that hunters bump, but it shows up the more he sinks down and uses his bum. He looks so relaxed here and us using himself lovely :)

This is an excellent ex. of how much better he is getting at coming underneath himself more with those hind legs. I'd still like lower quarters but that will come in time!

Another really good one collection wise


So it looks like he is bowing but Brandon really caught him in a glorious moment of scratching his face. I just like the pic cuz I look happy and my but looks nice. Lol

I plan to do another light dressage school Tues, hack Wed. and maybe a baby jump grid Thurs. He will have Mon and Fri off since I work night and have class during the day. I want to try to stay with the relaxed theme so I won't push too hard this week. I mean we have till May till our 1st event and till March till our 1st possible dressage show. Must find trailer first. Mom in Ohio has the one I used to use. Anyone wanna lend me theirs? Maybe? Puppy-dog-eyes...

And a random photo of me, Zoey and Boone.

Hardees burgers are really good by the way. I would go get one if I were you....right meow