Thursday, December 31, 2009


For those of you familiar with the big Boo in CA. You will remember that she was very rarely uncovered. Her pink skin was way to vulnerable in the hot desert sun. She grew used to this since her only shelter was a tin roof covering on legs in all but our Valley Center set up. She went through 1 and a half fly sheets a year it seemed. Here our gal gets to go naked all the time! Its winter after all, much to her delight! She didn't even fluff up her woolly mammoth type coat until it got below 40 degrees with a stiff breeze. Even then she was quite content in the sun. Cuervo on the other hand is cold. He has a longish coat for his norm from Ca but its not cutting the mustard. In fact several weeks ago we had a 71 degree day with a warm soaking rain. He came in shivering violently. On went the wool cooler and down went a warm bran mash. So it seems my two horses have swapped needs. Now its his turn to wear clothes most of the time. In his trunk he has a rain sheet with no insulation, a lite, weatherproof, puffy blanket with minimal insulation and a heavy duty winterized rug that I purchased when we thought we where heading north to Or. So of course what does he need? Why, a medium weight weather proof rug. From what I have read in the various catalogues a medium weight blanket is 200 grams of poly fill insulation and is suitable down to 35 degrees with a full coat. OK, but what if it heats up to the mid 50s? Which it has been known to do here on the coast after a chilling, rainy morning. It also goes the other way with equal speed and propensity. Almost every one has heard the saying "If you don't like the weather, wait five minutes". Well, I gotta say, this place is the closet I've come to this saying ringing true since Boulder CO. My head is fairly spinning with choices of high tech, high priced , high falutin', choices! Many years ago in MD, my standard rule was "keep 'em dry and keep 'em natural". That meant everyone had a good rain sheet and a stable blanket to make me feel better on bitter nights. This combined with a very modified trace clip seemed to fit the bill just fine. It seems, my sensitive, light bodied, boy is bucking the norm. Next week arrives a brand new, temperature controlling, mid weight, moisture wicking,self righting,coat polishing, rain proof, wind breaking blanky of the ages. Boo is looking awfully smug, my guess is she took a lot of ribbing in Ca for her outfits.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Pony fun!

Cuervo and I have been fooling with a few fun things so I thought I would record the progress. He's such a ham..... We built on what I discovered during our trailer loading session before our grand exodus east. But I didnt like the "cue" so back to the round pen and low and behold we got a good start on our "levade" on a recall. I simply stopped him with more energy on his way to me at a canter. From there I could stop him and then ask for the energy to go up and now we have a pretty good cue that nets me the same idea with out the round pen, halter or speed. Here is the succession, if you will, Don't you love that his hair lands last? I'll have you know he was all beautified that morning, then I had to go to lessons and I returned to Mr. tanglemane mudsides!

The tire work is more challenging as our boy can jump over, around, laterally across...well, you get the picture. Slowing it down was the challenge. My next goal is to load him onto it backwards, then work on various pairs of feet remaining on the tire and then maybe levade on the tire!? who knows.... What ever we find fun! Thanks to Timmie for being the frosted over photographer. As you can tell by my michelan man look it was COLD out.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

"hangin" with the horses.

and then the lens fogged up....

dipilatory needed!

whatcha doin?

"sneaking" up...

Friday, December 11, 2009

ah.... the good old days!

A good friend forwarded me this YouTube vid :

I in turn shared it with some riding buddies that I thought would relate! But the more I thought about it the more I needed to share it with everyone. Not only for its comedy, but for its sweetness. Can you remember the days when 8 plus hours at the barn was to short? Can you remember braiding tails for fun? Jumping horse jumps and doing flying changes OFF horses? The adventures we had....I raced in the derby, I steeple chased, I went to the Olympics and won the Tevis cup. All from the back of my 14 hand welsh /TB cross pony. These imaginary adventures blended right in with the actual adventures which sometimes found me walking home, brambles in my hair and dirt on my breeches. It was grand!

Somewhere between there and here things change beyond our control and something is lost. I once credited John Lyons for giving me back my joy in horses. He did and then some. But Ive realized something recently and that is that the joy and the fun and the adventure may get redefined, may get side tracked and may get dusty from disuse but its still there. So many of us remember fondly our childhood horse experiences. Its why most woman get back into horses when they "grow up". Every last one of the gals that I meet don't understand why its not the same and why their childhood pony outshines their current mount in brains and brawn. Gals, Its not the horses that have changed( well, outside of the fact that we can afford the ones we drooled over as kids! wink wink)Its us. Try this: laugh when your horse does something unexpected, braid flowers into his mane, stop during your ride and let your horse graze while you take in the scenery. Imagine you have wings on your next canter, hug him and kiss his warm muzzle. Then when no one is looking gallop yourself(sans horse) over a few cross rails, throw in a buck after a high one and laugh till your sides hurt. Our dreams don't have to die when we attain them and they don't have to become more grand. We where never happier than when our pony's where scraggly,wild and unruly. I will cherish those days and endeavour to create more just like them!

Friday, December 4, 2009

A sport for all ages!

This video is great and gives me all kinds of ideas for my confidence course. The horses expression is pretty good through out too which just makes this little clip better. In related video on YouTube, they have some of the obstacles broken down to the teaching level. Very cool. When do you think we will see this at shows?

The second vid is one great trail course! Love the little guy and the riders eye view! Cuervo would love it!!!