Tuesday, October 27, 2009


After a couple of terms of yoga class locally (weekly) I ordered another yoga DVD and also dug out my Ali McGraw one - which I then found was VHS so ordered it on DVD - and for the last couple of weeks I have been doing yoga for an hour a day.

Oh my gosh - it's helping my posture, my balance, my strength - everything!

It's sooo good - it's quite addictive.

It can only do good things for my riding too.

Oh - and the yoga teacher is hot - also a bonus! Makes it very easy to watch. ;-)

Monday, October 26, 2009

Parelli Saddle

Jane came over yesterday to see the boys and for a coffee... and she kindly brought her Parelli saddle over for me to try on Garbo. It was actually a good fit, and I had a wee ride in it too! It was very soft and bouncy - coupled with Garbo's bouncy trot I nearly bounced off LOL.

Anyway - the conclusion was, that my NSC saddle was quite close in fit and shape so that was good.

Coco came up to say hi while Roger and Jane were there, he is getting very brave. Wouldn't let me give him a kiss though while the others were watching.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

More foot progress

I had a nice afternoon in the sun grooming everyone and cleaning out feet etc. Garbo has these strange depressions on his sole - very off indeed. On more than one foot too.

I did some more with Coco - rubbing all over and finding itchy spots...

and then some work on lifting his feet - in preparation for hoof trimming.... his back feet are in such good nick - beautiful concavity and not really that long!

AND - I got hoof oil on all four feet!!! Back ones were easy peasy but front ones he kept stepping away so it took a bit of approach and retreat - and just as he stood still I finished.

Don't his hooves look flash.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Back legs

I picked up Coco's back feet today - one at a time after massaging his legs and feet... I gently squeezed his hock and waited until he tried (and he lifted his heel up), I released and tried again and rested his hoof in my hand for about 1 second. Then I tried the other side, he walked off after that one, but came back - he is making such good progress.

Gave him a rub all over again today too. And a kiss on the forehead - and no jumping!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Sunny day and a ride out

Well I had coffee planned with a friend after the boys had had their feet trimmed but it was fine and sunny and not windy so I thought - too good not to go out for a ride - - so we did. (Moved the coffee to tomorrow).

The trims went well - she is not as good as Jools but you know - better than not having them dome (Jools is touring for the month).

I hooked up the float before the trimmer came and packed my saddle and new hackamore, CS and 22ft.

Garbo hesitated a little when he loaded, sniffed the floor for a few minutes, and the dividers and then got on, and then backed out again, so I asked again and he hesitated for a minute and then got on.

Off we set - it's about a 20 minute drive - but it's a nice drive. I left Maraschino and Coco eating.

We got there and unloaded and although could not see any horses he only took about 2 minutes to settle down and I gave him a hay cube.

Off we went after saddling to the arena and did a bit of ground work.

Well next thing these two skinny horses who were obviously in the arena paddock to eat the long grass, wandered in to the arena to say hello.

I had to defend Garbo's space - he was cresting his neck and showing off and trying to say hello - but really he calmed down alot when I shoo'ed them away. Hmmmm... so I continued to shoo them each time they cam near us - they were bloody nosey that's for sure. Garbo wouldn't have cared less what someone in the arena was doing if he was in a paddock with that much grass.

I managed to finally get Garbo to go over a pole on a circle )at trot too) without stopping at the pole and looking at me> once during L&HB Dvds there was an idea to make a transition at a pole, which we tried and then I gave him a treat. Every single time since then Garbo has stopped at the pole and looked at me, and if that doesn't work he straddles it.

Initially I was a little worried that I would not be able to ride but I decided I could shoo them away with the hackamore rope, and I got on.

Considering Garbo could have been so distracted, he was so good. I thought he would just head off to talk to the horses but he was listening to me and we didn't have to argue about it. If they came over I twirled the rope and they backed off. Garbo seemed to really appreciate that and he got on with what I was asking.

I did quite a lot of walk, changes of direction with direct and indirect rein, and we did some nice trot in straight lines too - not much... just a couple of lengths and a couple of widths of the arena. We went over the low caveletti a few times too - I mean probably 20!

Then my friend arrived with her horse and I was almost done but she asked if I could stay a bit while she rode her young one so I got back on and we walked around with Scribble for about 20 minutes I suppose, over the cavaletti again, touching the tall jump stands etc.

I have a video even. (I know it sounds windy but it really wasn't).

After a while I got off and Garbo didn't even worry when we headed to the float and Scribble headed to the barn, and he loaded just fine after an apple.

Off we set - it was 3.30pm and we left home at 1.05pm. So I guess I rode for about an hour and a bit.

I am quite tired now - going to make spaghetti for tea and watch The Mentalist - my favourite show at the moment.

Oh yes - Maraschino apparently called out a few times but nothing serious and no running around.

It was nice to get out, nice to ride, and nice to have a horse that trusted my leadership under all the circumstances he did today. There were also horses going to and from, calling out, and dogs running through the long grass at the end of the arena. No bucks today at trot either - we even did half a circle - then he went into canter so I transitioned to walk.

Oh - the other thing we did was try the concentrated reins again. Yesterday all he did was back up at 100 miles an hour! Today was better.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Windy ride

I know I know you are sick of hearing about our spring winds but they are damned annoying. And I have a video to show you!

Maybe no one reads this so I am talking to cyberspace so it doesn't matter. Tell you what - if you read this - make a comment, then I will know how many people do read my raves. LOL. Just say hi.

OK - so - George was at work and my aunty and uncle were arriving about three so I made some gingernuts for my brother, mopped the bathroom floor, and went out to see the boys.

Everyone came into the washbay to say hi and it was really sweet - Garbo kept giving the others the evils everytime they came near me (this is MY human).. and then the look on his face after the moved with me smooching him was classic. I gave him a big brush and Maraschino a little one.

It was really funny Maraschino stood in the wash bay at liberty so I took his cover off, and left Garbo's brush up on his rear end (Garbo's) - this is what happened next...

Did Garbos feet (trimmer comes tomorrow thank goodness) and then saddled Garbo up - he seemed pretty chilled even though it was gale force bloody winds but I was desperate for a ride - even just a quick one. My OH doesn't like me to ride when he (or someone else) is not home just in case something happens...yes he has seen many injuries during my normal days... lots of bruises and hematomas (sp?), a broken arm and a cut open forehead.

But I thought - well my uncle and aunty are due soon... lol. Naughty me.

I took Garbo out to the hay shed paddock and over to the float. I used the end of my hackamore rope to get him to sideways towards me - worked pretty well... heehee... and got on. All he was interested in was eating grass, but that was fine - it was nice just being on.

This is us on the pedastal.

We had about a half hour ride in between snacks and pedastal turns.... also we would go back and forth, approach and retreat back to Maraschino - who was REALLY good - yay. I might even go out tomorrow.

Here's a video showing the wind - even though this was in the not so windy moment! Fancy me riding in the wind!

And then going on to the pedastal...

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Windy walk

I usually do the horsey stuff in the afternoon, but today thunderstorms were predicted for the afternoon so I decided to do something in the morning instead, that way I wouldn't feel disappointed about the weather later in the day.

I got Garbo in and the others followed of course, it was really hot so I took both Garbo and Maraschino's rain covers off temporarily.

Look how tall Maraschino is (I am 5ft6) - I have my hand on his wither....

Then I groomed Garbo and did his feet (trimmer due on Monday and man are they due).... and then took him and the others out to the driveway taped off area - still lots of grass out there plus a pile of topsoil from the house excavation which is still there but now has weeds on it.

Garbo wanted to show me he had not forgotten the pedastal on the way past, and then 'look I can just have my back feet on here too and eat grass at the same time'!

We went out the gate with just the 12ft and CS. Maraschino looked calm so we set off up the road, still in sight.

We got quite a way but not out of sight and the neighbour had just finished mowing his lawns so he came out to have a chat.

So while we chatted Garbo grazed the side edges and it was quite good as it meant we were there for about 30 minutes and Maraschino got sick of looking out for us after a while.

At the start Garbo was a bit on edge as it was quite windy and the other neighbour's palm trees were flapping around etc - but he relaxed after a few minutes after he realised I was just still chatting.

After that we set off up the road a bit further - where it goes down hill again and out of sight of our place.

We only spent 5 minutes looking at the sheep and Stanley's horses and off we went back to Maraschino - (see photo below - if you click on it you will see Maraschino being a giraffe) we got all the way back, and I was going to take Garbo in and saddle him up but then realised no one was home so it would have been kind of silly (if anything had happened) - it was blowing a gale by this stage and I have not ridden him or done any online for over a month.

So sanity prevailed.

Off we went back up the road again from zone 3 and then 5, and out of sight for about 10 minutes, and back again - and Maraschino was just eating...

We were out walking and chatting for 45 minutes!

Then I fed them and came inside and now it's raining. So - glad I decided to do that.

Friday, October 16, 2009

2 days and reflection

It's only been two days since I washed my float but it feels like forever. Paddocks just drying out again and more rain due tomorrow. Blimey!

I talked to George last night about building a round pen so at least I could go and do stuff in there, he thought it was a good idea (and I'll need one for Maraschino) so I'll start saving and figuring out the best place to put it and how to make the base stable and dry (without hindering the natural draining of the paddock). I am going to put it in the middle paddock. Ain't gonna happen this year I don't think but a good plan before next winter.

Just wanted to share a picture from October 2005... this was us in a dressage test at Woodhill Sands which is funnily enough bordering our road we live on now.... yes, to the casual eye he actually looks quite pretty doesn't he - and happy.... think this was on a change of direction at trot (he's always liked trot).... and straight lines....

I hated having to carry a whip, hated having to wear gloves (otherwise I would get blisters), hated having his mouth strapped shut.....

and then - outside the ring his float buddy called out and Garbo had had enough of all that....

Todays like today where I am dying to get out and ride but the weather is not playing along makes me look back and realise how far we have come (even if we don't have an arena to ride in anymore). Lets hope for fine weather soon so I can start getting out and riding - and then riding at home again too.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Been catchin up

I have not done any online or freestyle stuff all month (so far). First it was raining, then the paddocks were all wet (again) and then I needed to spend the first few fine days catching up on other stuff that comes with owning land... spraying weeds, planting trees, sowing grass seed, topping up the yards - etc.

But I always spend dinner time with them and we catch up.

I see them all day too usually which is a bonus.
I can go and say hi when ever I want.

I got a warrant of fitness on my float today, and my Jeep serviced, and washed the float too - so we are all set.

I was busy planting trees on Sunday and Garbo was standing not far from me watching (I was feeding them weeds in between) - in Coco's yard, and I stuck the spade in and a rabbit ran out - gave me heart failure, and ran straight into the yard Garbo was in.

I thought it would spook him but he looked down as if to say 'what was that' and then followed it to see where it had gone. It hid behind Maraschino's bucket.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Coco had a brush today!

Garbo doing his little dance on the clay pile - telling Maraschino to get lost.

Yep - I was grooming the others and he lined himself up for some tail detangler, and then some tail brushing... so I got the rubber curry comb and started on his back as I knew that was his itchy spot from the other day. You know what he did? He moved back and forth for me to itch more extensively and he did the whole 'oh yeah just there' look...

I then started up round his neck, and then his shoulders, then under his neck, then the bottom of his neck, then his front legs (wow) and right up his neck to his ears and he just turned his head towards me - touched my hand and let me curry comb his cheeks.


So after all that - about 20 minutes of brushing while the other two stood very patiently waiting, he looked kind of less scruffy - ways to go yet though. You can see where some of his winter hair has come out.

OMG I swear Maraschino has got bigger in the last two weeks!!

Garbo came running up when he saw me

but then stood behind the gate because he didn't want to go in the mud I think... then he started yawning - finally I went and got him. He enjoyed a good scrub with the curry comb too... still so much loose hair.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Coco - getting braver by the day

The video says it all

Finally some sun

Not much but at least enough to take the boys covers off and give them a good groom - because as you can imagine they are shedding hair like it's going out of fashion - the birds are loving all the free nest material. The swallows have made another nest (kids gonna have grandkids from last year I think)... and you can see the horse tail hair hanging out of it.

Garbo had to have his teeth flossed with the halter first before he put it on.

Then I tied him by the feijoa trees - he thought that was a bit like torture looking at all that long grass he was not allowed to eat. So I undid him and tied him by the door - also it was downwind for grooming which was better - less was going in my mouth!

He doesn't like to pose sometimes - today was one of those days but here he is all clean and scratched. We found lots of scratchy spots today. This was a 'just get me the food' look.

At the same time I was grooming Maraschino at liberty as he was a bit close to Garbo's tie up area - he was really good and alot easier to groom as he didn't have as much of a winter coat as Garbo did this year. Coco helped too. He groomed me as well - all I can do is giggle. It tickles.

Coco was so keen to groom - he started licking the inside of Maraschinos cover with his back to me so I started brushing the line of his back, which was so fluffy it had a dent all the way along and all the hair was hard and dried from the rain so instead of the brush I just started rubbing it like a horse would groom him, he loved it - for the first time I found his itchy spot!! He let me groom him this way nearly all the way up his neck to his head, certainly under his mane and along his very cresty neck! By his shoulders even. After about 10 minutes I suppose he calmly walked away. I made a big difference - can you see where all the loose hair has come away and the darker colour is coming through?

Maraschino was really good at just standing with the rope over his back - sometimes it would fall on the ground and he would stand on it (with one back foot and one front foot) and snort at it before figuring out how to back off it.

He looked very lovely after his makeover. We had to do a bit of approach and retreat with the mane spray bottle today too when I wanted to spray the forelock and top of his mane.