Thursday, August 14, 2014

Happy Trails

Life is still crazy, but we are slowly clearing the old barn. Sawdust has been moved over to Peggy's and this weekend my brother with his friends should get a lot more hay moved too. Since I can't do much in the way of packing, I told myself that I would make sure all the horses worked.

And I did too :)

To help me time wise, I rode bareback. DaVinci felt really good. He had a huge swingy walk and was stretching at the trot. I even cantered and he gave me the same pace both ways. He was funny because he could not figure out how to trot over the little x's. He kind of hopped in the front and trotted in the back. But overall it was a  solid ride.
Then it was Winston's turn. I definitely put the saddle on for him and made sure Peggy was on hand. He really handled the arena well, even with the dogs playing and loud noises in the area. When I felt like he had a solid walk, I got brave and asked for trot. Well, more of a jog. I used a tiny bit of leg yield to get his focus, but again he really was not fazed. I think he was really happy to get back to work. Mom rode him the next day too and with me on DaVinci, he went for his first trail ride. He was a tourist, but not a nervous one. Mom even let him lead at one point and he slowly worked it out.
Well, then I asked Peggy if she wanted to ride one of the girls for me. She picked Dottie. Dottie continued with her awesome trot she gave me last week. So I guess it was not a fluke. Rosemary and I really just tooled around trotting over the x's and poles. When she was warmed up I asked Larry if he wanted to get on. He was in a bit of pain so he just walked her around. You could see her taking care of him. Those girls love Larry. Then I got back on and we walked out on trail. Peggy walked Dottie over a bunch of wood piles. Rosemary happily walked by Larry, not caring that Dottie was way ahead. Mom and Peggy took them out again the next day for a trail ride too. I thought about riding Comrade for that ride, but DaVinci tripped earlier and really hurt my hand, so I walked it behind them.
Happy Trails

Finally later that first day I got to the red boys. Roscoe was so mad when I left. He though it was his turn. I tried to work him on the line, but holding the whip in my bad hand proved to be too much weight. Without my normal adeptness, Roscoe was getting away with doing movements wrong. I had to find a way to end on a high point and be done. He is too smart to work with when I can't keep the standards where they need to be. Mom put him through his paces the next day. She got some tips from Larry, who helps with Wounded Warriors riding program in our area. They use the Clinton Anderson methods and have soldiers who have been trained by his clinicians. It will be nice to have his discerning eye to help with Roscoe's training.
For Comrade, the ride was a reminder that he can move with contact. For the first time in 2 months, I shortened the reins and asked him to put himself together. His muscles more than anything had to work it out, but then it was not too shabby. I had to use some rein back when he got heavy and some lateral to get him straight, but his movement was steady. I had to call "Uncle" and give him to Peggy when my hand said enough. After Peggy let him know she meant business, he gave her just as nice a ride.
While I am not thrilled about the early mornings we have at Peggy's, the benefits are out weighing the negatives. The horses survived the rain after we juggled turn outs and the set up process is slowing moving forward. It was a little bittersweet to hear that one of the farms we had looked at to buy, sold recently. I have not given up, but it may be further in the future than I hoped. For now, we can enjoy our new situation.

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