Friday, May 29, 2015

Boots don't lie

Well I'm back to riding. A few observations: 

Dressage boots with no zipper or elastic will be brutally blunt about any weight gain. Mine were so tight it was painful just to be in them, let alone ride. 

Taking them off was even more painful. It seems like I must make better choices when eating or buy new boots. The first one is cheaper so we'll go with that. 

Phil has been okay with returning to work but I feel like he's uncomfortable somehow. Or maybe he's not making as solid of a connection because he likes being off work! I'll just keep trying. 

An old barn friend once told me that dirty horses are happy horses. Kaswyn has reached nirvana, everyone! 

Friday, May 22, 2015

Taking a rest

It's not just Phil that's taking a little break, it's me too. I'm not able to ride right now. I had to have surgery on my face to remove a small bit of basal cell carcinoma. 

Before you get all freaked out by the Big C, this kind of carcinoma is easily treated by a procedure (called the Mohs procedure) and as of right now it is totally gone.  

The bad thing is that I haven't been able to ride for a week. I might be able to ride again in a few more days. But for right now, I can't ride until I'm all healed up. 


So people, along with your helmets, wear your sunscreen outside! Especially during peak hours of 11am and 4pm. 

Monday, May 11, 2015

Mother's Day ride

Mother's Day for me started off with a lovely breakfast in bed served by my girls (assist from Craig, of course). Then I was off to the barn to see my pony boys. 

I rode Phil and he was really good! We are still working stuff out, but I feel progress. 

Then I took Kaswyn out for a walk. He's completely recovered from his fall a few weeks ago, so we had a nice walk outside and a little graze. 

It's easy to let him graze when I'm riding since I ride him in a halter. 

This horse is so fantastic. I wish everyone could meet him. He's the best! 

Thursday, May 07, 2015


I ride Phil outside again today. It was really lovely. The footing was perfect, the breeze kept the bugs off of us, and Phil was a pretty good boy. 

High off my ride from Phil, I decided to hop on Kaswyn just to walk him around outside. It was my first ride on him since his terrible fall, and it was really nice. Both boys got a quick bath after their work, and went back to their stalls to eat their hay. It was such a great evening all the way around. Little did I know...

I was cleaning up the wash rack when I heard Phil nicker in a strange way, and then I heard hoof steps in the aisle. Since I was the only one at the barn, I found this somewhat alarming. 

I ran into to aisle to see Kaswyn trotting towards me. I held my hands up and said "Kaswyn! Whoa! You stop now!"

He turned around and ran into the arena, where he proceeded to run around loose like a total boob. All I could think about was that the last time he was loose in the arena he fell in the most horrible way, Finally he stopped and let me catch him. I think he was really proud of himself. 

I put him back in his stall, making sure that I latched the door this time. He scared me, but who could stay mad at this innocent face? 

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Rain riding

Today when I got to the barn I went to check the outdoor arena before I decided where to ride. Since it had rained off and on all day I was concerned that the outdoor would be too wet. To my delight, the footing was perfect, 

Of course I lunged Phil first, and I was able to get some pics. Check mah boy out! 

The ride was virtually goose-free, and even though it was raining lightly it didn't seem to bother Phil. The only thing that was annoying was all the sand that got on my boots when I lunged. It made the bottom of my boots slippery and I kept losing my stirrups. Either that or I was doing something weird with my legs or feet or something. 

The cleanup afterwards kind of sucked because there was wet sand everywhere, but I still had a good ride. Go Phil! 

Kaswyn is doing well too! I think I'll hop on him and have a little stroll around this week. I do love that boy! 

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Plans, we got em.

I had planned on going to a bunch of recognized shows with Phil this year. However, we had some setbacks in the beginning of the year that made me rethink that decision. 

While Phil is much more ridable than he once was, I realized that we were still missing a major component of dressage: connection. We've been working very hard on this, and I am now planning on going to the NODA schooling show series this summer. 

I have to discipline myself and lunge Phil before I ride him, not because he's silly if I get right on him, but because it helps Phil to relax his back and stretch into the bit. It takes longer and it gives me more tack to clean at the end of the day, but Phil is certainly more through his back and makes a better connection when I lunge him first in side reins, even if it's for five minutes. 

Today was beautiful so we rode outside again. I forced myself to lunge him first and we had a great ride. Except we had another run-in with the geese! Those damn geese are secretly plotting against me. I must say that Phil freaked much less than he did last time. He was able to get back to work pretty quickly. 

I am certain that we'll continue to make progress. I'm really excited about this year. I just hope I can get a ride to the shows...not having a truck and trailer really sucks! 
Header Image from Bangbouh @ Flickr