Tuesday 20 December 2011

Fancy Feet - Weekend Report

Unfortunately no pictures in this update, so no incentive to continue reading as no reward... basically if you don't fancy reading a novel best not to get your hopes up that this will be short! Sorry - I'm not known for paraphrasing ...

Saturday was a good day riding wise, especially considering she hadn't been worked since our first understated spin in the new bridle on wednesday evening (see previous post for pictures/update). Thursday was my work Christmas party so i did not get to visit Kika that evening as it was on straight after work and i didn't get in till after 1am - lights out in barn at 10pm so figured best not go out in torrential downpour that raged for Thursday and Friday as a storm passed overhead and wake everyone up up there at 1am, ;-)
Friday, although i don't drink I was too wrecked to get up to see her - SHAME ON ME - I know! But i'd still put in a full days work and aforementioned storm was rotten, high winds and torrential rain did not an enticing 10min uphil walk to the barn make!
L had let her run / loose schooled her on Thursday evening and she goes in the walker every morning so i knew she wouldn't be too badly off for my lazyness! Although not excusable at all!
Anyways got there on Saturday and had been planning on doing some pole work, but arenas were not free to allow me set myself up, so just decided to do some flat work and lunged her first - as we hadn't done much on wednesday and she hadn't been worked Thursday or Friday, so to be on the safe side i decided to lunge to get her head right before i sat up. Typically i needn't have worried, she was as good as always on the lunge and when i hopped up we still did a good 20mins flat work - walk/trot and some very nice canter work which i was very very happy with!

Sunday dawned all white and powdery as we had our first snow of the year. Fun for most, but not ideal for me I'll admit! It was far from as disruptive as last year's first snow where 20-30cms fell first go, but Sunday was the day L and I had organised to let the two ladyships off in the "field" piece of land we've been given the sue of for the winter. I wasn't sure what would happen on that front till after i rode and L arrived, so figured i'd play it by ear and see what concensus was re:releasing them for some fun-filled fresh air.
I arrived at yard early for me, shortly after 12pm and thankfully found arena i wanted "free" - a couple were handwalking their elderly horse (ripe old age of 27 and looking very well for it!), after checking with them that it was okay to put down poles as they walked i had a grand old chat with them as i set up my polework in the same formation as the previous time (one/two weeks ago...I can't quite remember now! - again ref: previous posts - basically i'd a pole at 12, 3, 6 and 9 o'clock and then two other poles vertically down the center line combined with 3 and 9 o'clock to make for a large cross although not actually touching - plenty room between them for manoeuverability).
As previous spin had been so good i hopped up without lungeing and all went well, we had 2 or 3 moments where she lost the run of herself when something moved or something caught her attention out the corner of her eye and necessitated cat like leaps/half-rears as she attempted to tank off but couldn't. But all in all i was overjoyed with her as even though she sufefred from abovementioned "moments" she settled back into work good as gold and actually gave me some lovely work, including some very good canter work despite being tired.

This is getting longer than I'd planned (again) but in a bid to wrap things up relatively quickly L arrived and we decided to proceed with "operation turn out" as otherwise Christmas'd be upon us and the lovely ladies still wouldn't have gotten to make use of the land we'd been offered for winter. So we rugged up and wandered down to plot of land which another friend and her partner had helped us clear (he's a horticulturalist and had all the equipment etc required). We let the two ladies off as L and i worked to fence up the front correctly as stakes were driven too deep in the ground so we ended up having to use the trees, as front/gateway is straight out onto a "road" - which thankfully is no longer used since recycling center shut down but still the odd car can drive up/down as access to woods for walking etc. The two girls had a grand old time especially as two ponies are on the neighbouring plot as one can no longer be stabeld due to health issues and needs to be walking as much as possible - some sort of heart condition i think. Anyway the lot of them had a grand old time winding each other up, the plot we have is surrounded by big Christmas type trees and offers them great protection. There are also young trees growing in the middle of the field which we've wire surrounding to protect from trampling so unfortunately not much grass but plenty of obstruction to mad galloping/ground digging!
The goal of letting them out for a few hours each day is really just to get them some fresh air and stretch their legs - they get plenty to eat when in tehs tables so lack of grass is not a major concern for us. L's work shifts have been very convenient so far this week and she has been able to let them out about 2pm and bring them back in around 4 before it gets dark. She said they were good as gold yesterday - not a single run out of them when she released them, which is the main thing! She had to laugh at them as the apir of them were at teh gate as if waiting to come in when she passed to walk the dogs and then were there again with big sad faces on them when she was bringing them in.
Tomorrow's work shift means that she can let them out in the morning and then I'm going to make my way to barn on my lunch break to bring them back in - either that or i'll ask my mother with "Puppy-dog-eyes" to bring them in for me. Hopefully she'll be only too happy to as she has beena  vocal contributor to the "Get-Your-Horse-Into-A-Field" campaign ;-)
Gotta love a Mammy!

Plan for this week is some pessoa lungeing this evening, all going well a spin for some flatwork tomorrow evening, polework lungeing thursday evening, (first day of my holidays) friday daylight spin and then Saturday also hopefully. I think all going to plan Chirstmas day will be a day off work-wise as knowing our usual Christmas day I won't have time to get away to spend my usual 2-3hours at the barn when riding so she'll get her Christams treat from the Mammy who loves spoiling her with treats and goodies ... then telling me she's spoiled rotten with the amount of  rugs and numnahs she has! Speaking of, have ordered one that i think will look lovely on her and is outside my usual Purple Comfort zone! I ordered the Green and Pistachio one of THESE yesterday, have ordered the Orange and Cinamon one as a suprise for L, as she loves orange and I think the colours will look really well on her girl O - see previous posts for pictures of the lovely creature that is O.
All going well the girls will continue to get their couple of hours of turn out a day and we'll be able to keep a calm + happy head on Kika for this winter - although truth be told she is such a vast improvement on the ratty & cranky horse i had last winter that i am uber-thrilled with her and by proxy me and what we've achieved so far! Namely the fact that we've been able to keep working under saddle as of the start of November last year until Christmas - Kika had managed to wrangle her way out of work and through every test under the sun from, teeth to back to new saddle etc etc including x-rays!

Fingers crossed that all continues to go well and that my happy-go-lucky mare is here to stay!


  1. testing to see if it will let me comment! :-)

  2. OMG it did!!! *goes to read rest of blog*



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