Saturday 14 February 2015

Valentine's Rides

Guess what I got for Valentine's? Sunshine and a whole afternoon free to spend at the barn! I think our last beautiful day was around the Christmas holidays, if that gives you any idea of how appreciated today's warm sunny day was!

The horses were all feeling good, and both of mine were waiting at the fence looking like they wanted to get out and do something.
Pick me!

No, pick me!

I took Ginger first and she did pretty well. As mentioned, she was feeling good, so we had a ton of forward. Maybe we're gaining confidence in each other again as well, because she felt a lot more free and forward today and I felt fairly confident about riding proactively and directing that energy to good things.Such a nice change to have Ginger, who has all the forwards and just takes you along. I forget how much easier it is to ride a horse like that, provided I don't get nervous when it starts to feel a little too quick and 'big', for lack of a better word, I'm sure everyone that reads this blog has at some point been on a horse that is going decently enough, but you still feel like you're sitting on a keg a dynamite? That's Ginger - so much power on a hair trigger, it's slightly intimidating. I would be lying if I said I don't still have that nasty fall lurking in the back of my mind every time she scoots off or spooks at something, but of course the only way to work through it is to stay calm and keep her on the aids. So sad because my body seems to think I should drop the reins and go fetal, ha ha. In all seriousness though, I do feel like I've got the tools to ride her well, and have been riding her decently enough of late. There's just still that final bit of self doubt to work through. Stupid brain.
Ginger looking for trouble

I'm taking her to my lesson tomorrow, fingers crossed it goes well and I get some more useful input re: her quirks.
Big mare broke a sweat. Yes, I use a neck strap on her. Don't judge ;)

Bridget came out second, and there was much torture involved getting her walk out. It's way too hard leaving the barn, she says, and getting her to move out properly involves much groaning and sighing on her part and a bit of effort on mine. I persuaded her to trot part of the big hill alongside the road. Poor pony thought she might die. We just went out for about an hour hack and while she was dragging her butt on the way out, of course she did liven up on the way home. I took advantage of that and got some decent trot and canter work in. She earned her keep by not freaking out when 3 separate dogs tried to chase us along the way. I guess the dogs were feeling good today too? I've never seen any of them before today and I ride the same route multiple times a week.
I should put a pic of Bridget here, but I didn't take one. Instead you get Ginger ears in the ring

Too bad I can't somehow cross Bridget's street smarts with Ginger's love of working, Then I'd have the pony to rule them all ;)

I'll leave you with a pic of baby kitty and his valentine friend.



  1. Your girls are both so adorable! I hear you on the spooking thing though, I think it's terrifying when they're ready to jump out of their skin at any moment.

    1. She was much better today, a tired pony is a good pony apparently :)

  2. Don't apologize for the neck strap! 4* riders ride with them. They're very handy, not only for staying on but also for helping correct some bad habits over fences. Glad you're having good rides on both!

    1. it's a pretty sissy thing to use around here and people assume a lot of things - you wouldn't believe the amounts of questions I get. I just tell everyone if William Fox Pitt rides in one, I can too :)

  3. yay for both girls being very good!! and yay for sunshine! it's such a wonderful thing - and can even make 15* temps (our current situation here in MD) bearable... also - i second Jen - if william fox pitt isn't too good for a neck strap, none of us are!! haha :)

    1. I love sunshine so much this time of year - we see so little of it. You echoed my WFP comment above - great minds think alike, I love him!

  4. Great to hear both girls are doing so well. I hear on the nerves riding a spooky hire, Kika gives me jitters whereas the much more powerfully built Nancy just makes me laugh. What are our brains like?!
    Can't wait to read all a out your lesson ☺