If you're here from Finally Forever After, it's good to see you! If you're new, thanks for stopping by!
I created this blog for myself, as a (somewhat) daily record of the good, bad, and ugly bits of life with my girl, Willow. You can read a little bit about the both of us in the respective tabs up top there. :)
We've had about a weeks worth of rain here in KY, so it's made riding a little bit hard until the barn owner can get the sand ring going. The arena now is red clay and it's really not a safe surface until it dries (which takes forever). Shelby and I busted out like women on fire to the barn and quickly tacked the girls up. It was going to be my other mare, Sadie's, first trip under saddle since coming off the track. We were just hoping we could pick up with Willow where we left off, seemingly weeks ago.
We've had a real problem with her to the left, so Shelby has been focusing on lots of figure eights and riding her forward through the diagonal. Her evasion has been to slam on the breaks and start kicking at your leg and rooting her head when you send her forward. Bad mare. The response to that has been a sharp tap with the whip (with the leg) and immediate praise when she moves forward. It's made for some less than good looking moments!
I lunged her yesterday while Shelby and Sadie tried to figure out the whole 'lunging' concept and instead of letting her look all around and trot around, the side reins went on (loosely) right away. She threw a few hissy fits, bouncing around and trying to back up. I just kept sending her forward until she was moving forward and actually stretching into the contact of the side reins. At the beginning I could see how heavily she was leaning on the outside rein and really fighting with it. Throwing her body all over the place and just generally carrying on. I just kept sending her forward.
Finally it seemed she hit the lightbulb moment where she was stretching properly through her back and using her hind end to propel herself forward into the bridle. Hellllo soft, swingy trot! Floppy ears and all. Made this Momma proud!
After I finished lunging her, I went to help Shelby hop on Sadie (who was BRILLIANT) and Willow 'helped' me film the first few go arounds. She also was happy to model her new bling bling that I got her from Rolex a few weekends ago.
Then Shelby called it good with Sadie and we swapped reins so she could hop on Willow. I still haven't ridden her, but since my extreme morning sickness "seems" to be a thing of the past, I was thinking that maybe it was time to get going again (just in time to get too fat).
Shelby hopped on and was instantly saying "Wow! She feels so loose and forward!" Willow didn't throw one tantrum and looked AMAZING. She hopped off and handed me the reins, saying "You have to get on this mare." So up I went, in my shorts and sneakers (I know, I know) and holy. cow. I felt like I was riding a totally different horse. She was forward, but not out of control, relaxed, and SO light in my hand. I was beaming. I put my inside leg on and baby leg yield out. Inside leg on and baby leg yield back in. We ended on a great note with some stretchy walk on the buckle (my calves couldn't take anymore... I don't think I'll ever have to shave them again!) and dismounted with lots of pats.
We ended the night high as kites with how good our ponies were, and happily gave them a good brushing before turning them out with their dinner for the night.
Happy, happy, happy!
I'm off to go pluck a kitten out of my coffee, run some errands, and dig out my breeches that don't have buttons in the front!