Friday, June 30, 2017

"Got You Covered"

Wednesday was our final lesson with Natasha :( My lesson turned into a trainer ride because Roscoe was acting like a teenager. He was in no mood to bring his hind end under his back. After she worked him through his issues, I opted to let him be done rather than get on.

 What was cool is that Natasha mentioned that someone who also rides at Sprieser recognized the Castleberry prefix. She happens to own a warmblood bred at a farm owned by Roscoe's breeder's mentor. She was really happy Roscoe was being trained by Sprieser. I did tell Natasha she nearly got Roscoe's name spelled right when she did a show recap. Though she remembered the capital "F", she forgot he has two "f's."
Farewell Natasha
I was worried about having to start over and find another trainer. Or have to trailer to Sprieser for lessons. Luckily Natasha said "Got you covered." The newest assistant trainer will take us on. So fingers crossed we will click. I have not meet her yet since she was in Florida during both camps. The new trainer did say she is "Pony sized," so that should be great for having her show Roscoe.

Okay back to the lesson. Rosemary was the star of the day. No stomping, no grunting and she listened so well to Mom. They worked on leg yields and she actually did not rush them. Then Mom had a milestone and worked canter.  Natasha said she loved proving Mom wrong.

 Meanwhile, Comrade and Peggy worked on leg yields too. Then Peggy got overheated. So I took over and was promptly put to work on shoulder ins. I lose Comrade out the outside shoulder so this was a way to straighten us both in preparation for canter. When we got it right, everything slowed and I could feel him carry himself on three tracks. To the left he wanted to overbend, causing a kink in his body. I had to use more right leg to move him over. Out of the shoulder in, she moved us to 10 meter circle - shoulder in- canter depart. We seriously nailed the transition a few times and one time it was exceptional. It felt so slow mo since he lifted up and pushed. It was so smooth, I was surprised. So awesome to feel! Now Natasha said I have to work towards getting that feeling on Roscoe.

Next Wednesday is the Jump Chute Clinic and the following I may try to fit in a lesson with the new trainer before the show on the 15th. Another first for me, I am bringing Comrade along for the show. We will stick with Intro B for him and Intro C for Roscoe. I have orders from Natasha to move up to Training at the next show. I am a bit in awe of what has happened so far this year. I never would have expected this outcome. My best decision this year is definitely going to Adult Camp.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Busy July Ahead

I mentioned Roscoe has some stuff coming up. Some of you may remember that when I got the stud fee for the May breeding that I had plans on how to spend it. Early this year the owner of Roscoe's 2017 filly said that I should get him inspected. My initial reaction was "Uh, no way." Especially when I looked at the prices for RPSI, which this year merged with Westfalen.
Individual annual membership: $110
Pony stallion annual registration: $200
Inspection: $250
Microchip: $50
Vet Exam: $?
Yes Roscoe, More braids are in your future

Getting that stud fee made the financial burden less and then it seemed fate when the inspection is being held at a farm 30min away. So July 29th Roscoe will be inspected and I will pay a ton of money. He will have to do the triangle, move at liberty and do the jump chute. Anyone with long legs want to show him in hand?

Roscoe has been practicing his jump chute at home. He needs to be able to do it with no hesitation. With that in mind, I signed him up for the YEH Jump Chute Clinic on July 5th. He will get a 30 min session at Loch Moy in MD. Hopefully that will get him ready to play away from home.

Beginning and the end are filled, so the middle will possibly have a show. My original plan was to have Natasha ride Roscoe at a show. That would teach him to pay attention and take my nerves out of the picture. Unfortunately, I found out this week she is leaving. I am not sure where that leaves us. Hopefully at our last lesson she will direct us. So probably the show ride will fall to me. My other thought is to bring Comrade along to a show so he has a buddy.

And if all that is not enough, there is the possibility of a breeding happening early in the month.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Happy 6th Birthday Roscoe!!!

Aww, I can barely believe my baby is 6 years old today. Most of you have watched him grow up and turn into the super pony he is today. He has a busy season to come, but he got to work on making baby number 7 today.
Roscoe 2012

Roscoe 2017

Despite a raging thunderstorm, he was able to perform. The collection center made sure everything was set up just right for Roscoe. The right AV, the right height phantom and the biggest change, no tease mare. Believe me, Roscoe noticed the lack. He was so much more manageable without that extra stimualtion. He was quickly on his way back to the trailer. Fingers crossed everyone!

"Hey Mom, It is POURING out there!!"

Stay tuned to hear what is on the calendar for Roscoe.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

First Comes a Bath, Then Comes Braids...

 Then comes a Show! What I did not mention was that during my lesson Natasha was like "You should come to Morningside next weekend." When I asked what test I should do if I only do one, she said Intro C. Talk about leaping into the deep end. I decided that I would stick with B.
As my rides after the lesson showed marked improvement in our canter departs and the time came to register for the show, I took the leap.
Seriously This Again????

I warned Natasha, I am a stressed shower with horrible nerves and Roscoe is very different. Today I was in tears as I climbed into the truck with Peggy. Mom had to work and would miss a show for the first time ever. Roscoe was bathed and braided since my boss let me leave work early Friday, but he was a total shit this morning. He acted like monsters we after him and he had to protect himself by bucking. I think his hormones are at a high point right now.

Added all up, I was wondering if we would accomplish the test. We left Roscoe on the trailer until it was time to mount. Natasha came in time to help me mount. Then we made the trek to the warm up area near the rings. Morningside has a track, two dressage rings, a jumper rings and a cross country course. I saw the demise of my hard work cleaning Roscoe's legs as we had to cross a Virginia red clay puddle.
My ride time was 1103 and my warm up with Natasha was 1025. Until that time I worked on chilling us both out on the track away from all the action. We circled, serpentined and transitioned. We even managed both leads, but I was losing him out the left shoulder. I will say Roscoe had a true walk which we did not have at the last show. Natasha figured out real quick she had to keep us both busy and focused. She had us spiral and transition. That wicked left drift was still there though. To the point of him nearly running Natasha over. The other horses were distractions, but I was able to reel him back.
Going into the show area when I was on deck, I was still not sure we would get the canter. The test was icing after the warm up. Roscoe was steadier around the outside of the arena as we started our test.

Honestly once the test began, it was a blur.
Score of a8 :)

He was a bit more inverted, but his rhythm was better.
Another 8

That dang right lead was slow coming and a bit of a run. I don't care, it happened people!
Proof of right lead

The downward almost had us leaving the arena with his tip to the outside. Going left, the left shoulder was still a problem. It caused us to make a smaller trot circle.
That left shoulder about to cause a problem

 I put my inside leg on and pushed his belly over so I had a chance of getting the left lead. Luckily, the lead came easier than I thought.
Hair flying canter

 The downward had the same issue nearly exiting. After that movement, I was thrilled. We actually had a free walk, where I made sure to throw my reins away.
Look Roscoe can walk

Then our last trot was okay, but he got distracted by who knows what and we ended the test with him screaming down center line.
Did I mention this was the same judge as the last show? Yeah, I wondered how it would go. She asked for crisper canter transitions and wished he would not whinny. Uh, yeah same here. She did say his trot rhythm was great.
So here is our Intro C test:

Guys after the drama of the morning, I threw my hands up as we walked out of the arena. Natasha said "Now your smiling." Roscoe and I really wanted to go play over jumps, but we did not push it. Plus the heat was coming. Peggy and I got him settled on the trailer, braids out, sponged off and munching hay, before I made the trek back to see if the scores posted. It was a bit of a wait. They run a combined test along with the dressage only creating a scoring delay. An hour or so later, the scores revealed we had placed 4th with a score of 66.25.

My boy and I may be able to do this stuff after all. Carpe Diem is what I told Natasha when I let her know we were showing C and I feel like that is what we did at the show.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Apparently I Have Goals

Two Gemini's and my new boots :)

This month our lesson fell on my birthday. We switched it up and I rode first. I also rode my whole lesson. Since the show, I have felt more solid and Natasha saw some of that. She started with Roscoe's walk. I had to use my core to slow his front end and activate the hind.

Slow became the key word for the lesson. He is all for charging forward and out his front end. As we worked leg yields, my timing sucks, we had to slow so he could cross and eventually pick up canter. It was tough and we only managed a few steps. Roscoe's canter transitions have improved since the show. Natasha wanted more and made us do trot/canter transitions around a circle.

No Lesson is complete without the tail monster!
Leg yield
That brought the bucking, since Roscoe could not understand why I was tapping him with the whip when he thought he was going enough. Ah well, he was just checking I could stick with him despite my age.
Happy Bucking Birthday!!!

During my lesson Natasha said "...Training level is the goal this year..." Ha, apparently I have goals I never expected. Can I mention I have not even looked at the Training level tests? We shall see what happens.

After my lesson, we had Natasha ride Comrade. He has been so sticky on that right lead, it is frustrating. Comrade knew right away he could not get away with anything with her on board. He did throw a tantrum though, stomping his feet in one place. I felt better seeing her have similar issues that I do. The difference was she had the muscle to push him through and keep him going. I did not ride him that day, but Sunday he was like a new pony. He picked up the correct leads right away and he moved forward. We still have the left bulge, but the change was lovely.

Mom and Peggy rode the rest of the lesson working the bell curve. They both had some great times where the horses were together, not stomping. Comrade was really glad to have Peggy riding him and Rosemary figured if she was good, we would not put Natasha on her.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Magic Hands and Needles

The last few farrier visits, DaVinci has been a bit wobbly. He is not as strong in the hind end. He also has been retaining fluid along his belly, sheath and legs. This is a sign of circulation issues. At 29, not too surprising. So Mom convinced Dad that getting him worked on by the chiropractor would be more beneficial than just calling the vet.
Monday after the show he, Comrade and Rosemary all got a session. DaVinci being the suspicious sort, took awhile to settle into the work. She found no major body issues, but after hearing about him, she checked his heart. Turns out he has a significant heart murmur. The lack of oxygen most likely causes the hind end weakness. With that find, DaVinci goes into full retirement :(

She moved onto acupuncture with a strong focus on the heart lines. He and Comrade even got needles at the TMJ points. As the needles began their magic, DaVinci melted. That was the most relaxed I have ever seen him. Afterwards he was less grumpy towards the girls. And two weeks later, our farrier said he felt better. Score for magic hands and needles.

Comrade received a tune up, she straightened his chest and worked that left side. I felt a big difference when riding his trot a few days later.

Rosemary's work and acupuncture focused on her hips and lower back. As needles went in she was twitching.  She turned to look at the chiropractor and must have caused one to shift because she started bucking. When the trouble needle was removed, we saw she had bent it into a "j" shape. She was fine after that though and finished relaxed. Next month she will get front shoes to see if that will help relieve some of her tension.
It is always great to be able to give these sessions to the horses. I wish I could afford it on a regular basis since the benefits are amazing.

Friday, June 2, 2017

Chrome for the Win!!!

This was an extremely close Foal Pool. Every one's date guesses were close together and many of you had similar chrome guesses. I was amazed to have guessed correctly for once. I was only off by a few days and a few socks :)
Matching tilt, pretty girls
Roscoe and Tawe certainly did not disappoint with this filly. Her breeder took a chance at a last minute breeding to Roscoe and it paid off with a pretty, cobby, big girl with a super personality.

 So here is how the scoring worked:
The pool started with 20 points
The number of days away from the actual birth date were subtracted from the 20
Correct Gender was +1 point
Incorrect Gender was -1 point
Correct Chrome/Color Bonus +1 each
No points were lost for incorrect chrome/color guesses

First off, notice that Carly was spot on for her date of birth! She wins a $10 RW gift card. Sadly, she did not get any bonus points to take the overall win.

Then notice... we have a tie between Alli and Alanna. Bonus points for chrome for the win. Each will get a $20 RW gift card, but I had to figure out a tie breaker for the THT give a way.

In the end. I messaged them and asked the age old question:
"Heads or Tails?"

And the winner is, by my co worker's neutral coin flip, Alli!
Carly, Alanna and Alli FB message me or email, your email addresses so I can send your cards. If your email is still the same one as last year, just leave a comment. Alli I will forward your contact information to THT so you can collect your prize.
Thank you everyone for participating! Hopefully we will have another Foal Pool next year.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Happy Birthday Rosemary and It's a Filly!

315 in the morning yesterday I received a picture of Roscoe's sixth foal. And for about 30 minutes we thought it was a colt. But groggy eyes were deceived and the foal is a filly.

This day also is Rosemary's 10th Birthday. So it seemed fate that the filly is black with a big star and 4 socks.

I am working on crunching the numbers to see who won the Foal Pool. I will share more pictures as the owner shares them.