Thursday, March 31, 2011

Three Sun Month

Not too long ago,  I posted a Three dog night.. due to the very cold days and nights. March came in like a lion and left like one.. giving us about 3 days with sunshine just to tease us. We have managed to continue riding and doing ground work - but it's just not as much fun with no cheerful sunshine. And DRAT -- April's Fool's day, which marks my favorite time of the year -- obstacles :) Weathermen have announced a good foot or more of WHAT ?? snow !! Yikes.. . I just got some of my obstacles out and began putting together some new updated remodels. Well.. we have all month so fingers crossed.

This day, Zoe and I had time to take a quick trot.. we chose Keri (of course) and Elektra - and headed out with the original plan of either the 8 mile or the 10 mile loop.  As we approached the turn for the 8 miles, we opted for the 10.. then changed again turning right to do another loop down French Meadow ending probably with a nice fun canter up the highway. I love this stereo-typical sight along the back roads - sap buckets patiently waiting to catch that sweet stuff. Not a great year this year in Vermont with the intense winds and cold weather.

Coming up to our next turn toward French Meadow Road.

But once again we changed our minds -- and darted onto the snowmobile trail to cut across and up and around :)  Last year around this time we actually took Nimue onto this trail with the cart. Not as much snow last year, but still one bumpy ride ! 

Nice views from here

You know how I feel about a view from the saddle !

Cross the road onto the continuing trail that leads up the mountain. We have come down that side many times - but we know not to try in the winter-- it's steep in parts and the snowmobiles can make some slippery trails.

Fun to trot up though ~

 It was very cold out on the road.. colder than either of us thought it was going to be, so we were not truly dressed properly and did regret that while trotting the roads.  Along these trails, it was so much warmer - no winds and quite peaceful.

Despite the below freezing temperatures, there is still quite a bit of melting happening at ground level. The water level is high, there are small rivers under the thick ice - sink holes everywhere. On parts of the trail we had to be cautious -- you might be able to see the little crevasse here.  On occasion,  the horses' feet would break through suddenly into icy pits... the thick ice being hollow underneath.

It's always so refreshing to get out for a trot. We have a nice long trek planned for next week.And of course - Zoe and I and our Curlies will be lining up for the Obstacle Celebration as soon as the weather allows.  Snow jousting ??

Enjoy ~

Our first lesson

I had my first riding lesson with Apache today. We have had Apache for a year, so I guess it was about time. Apache has been trained (and raced) western horse and my background is in dressage, but we have begun to understand each other during the year. And in fact we are mainly trailing. But now we instructor and because I could not decide between western and dressage, I selected Haut Ecole ;)

The subject of the first lesson was decent walk and bending. And we ware able to make few steps very fine walk. I really enjoyed... next lesson is after two weeks :)

2 weeks to Fair!!!

I am pleasantly surprised at how prepared I am for Fair this year. I think it has a lot to do with the RAC encouraging me to ride this winter even on the cold days. Both Abby and Theo are in great shape, they know their job, and I feel they truly trust me. There are a few things to care for in the next two weeks like finding a place to give them a bath, Theo's attention span in groups and hanging "signs" around the arena. One of the biggest things that spooks horses at the fair are those silly ad signs they zip tie to arena panels. I am determined to have the bravest horses there :-) So tonight I will hang tarps along the arena walls and in the outdoor to start getting them used to it. Maybe that could be an obstacle?

On to the riding details. Sunday I rode Abby up to Black Hawk. All the other boarders were just chomping at the bit for me to go so they could find out if the trails were safe enough. I managed to drag 2 of the poor riders with me so they could find out for themselves :-) It was pretty funny listening to them as we went up the steep muddy trail to the park talking about how they had to go back down it. They may question themselves the next time they go out on a ride with me. Abby was the leader the entire way and she was the best behaved as well! She's only been under saddle for 3 months now and she out rode the two older horses. Mud, trees down, hikers, nothing bothered her until... we came across a couple walking their dog on a leash! She was so silly, when we first saw them the dog was loose running around and Abby couldn't have cared less about them. Then the humans put a leash on the dog and automatically it became a horse eating MONSTER! She didn't do to much just kept stopping and considered taking a few steps away. Once they passed she was back down to her normal self. Silly horses.

I just lunged her on Monday because her stifles were a little sore from coming down the hill. Once I got her moving though she was fine. She did give me some comic relief by bucking and kicking on the lunge which she Never does so it was good to see her cut loose. Then Theo came down and decided he wanted lunged too. So he fell in right behind her trotting around the circle with no halter on! It was sooo funny and nobody was around to witness it but me.

I rode Theo on Monday and it was hard work. He was gripping the bit and trotting around with his nose out. Unfortunately, I think it has something to do with so many riders in the arena he likes to look at them all. He wasn't terrible and most people wouldn't notice it but of course I do. I was able to get him to relax and pay attention by the end. I think a little lunging before we ride with big groups will help. He will be rode again tonight and I plan on doing allot of circles and "thinking" work. I did have pics but they are at home I'll add them tonight!

Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday Janeen. Like the idea Denise (to bad my birthday was in January LOL) Anyway I tried, went to feed the horses in the morning but is was still raining big time. Played in the mud and rain with Mallie though and she and I say HAPPY BIRTHDAY. And of course she wanted to eat the camera. I felt too bad for Freedom to take him. He was soaking wet and everything is so slippery I don't like to slip and slide. We had a GREAT day yesterday. I practiced some of the obstacles and he was so relaxed I took him for a trail ride. This was the first time al alone again. No riding buddy, not a horse ponied with us, just Freedom and me....and we where a team again! Since I drove him out of the herd (I blogged earlier about him kicking the other horses) he is doing so much better. He needed to know where we stand I guess :-)

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I love birthday rides...

I've decided we need to start a new RAC tradition! Everytime an RACer has a birthday, we all get out and ride on that day to celebrate their special day! So email me with your birth date and we'll start this party plan!

Today, I know I would have put off riding if it wasn't for Janeen's Birthday. Several of her friends organized a trail ride and surprise pot luck and cake afterwards to celebrate her special day. Unfortunately, she might not blog about it because Tygs, her curly is not yet trail worthy. Anyway -- hope you had fun Janeen!

I had to work, so I couldn't cut out for the afternoon. Janeen's place is about 45 min. from me so a bit too far on a work day. So I decided to cut out after work and ride with everyone in spirit. It was actually Janeen's idea! A good one too!

It was a short trip to the lake, but it was heavenly. 40 deg. Still icy spots on the trail, and not much room to trot except along the beach, but we still had a great time!

Hope some of you got out too! If so, please report how you celebrated Janeen's Birthday with us!


Today I lunged Suri in walk and trot. Even with bad weather coming and most horses are a bit restless (Voelie did not even want to eat, only when I was standing with her to keep her calm, she is more the nervous type of horse) Suri was really calm and did not mind anything at all. She was so clever about it and understood exactly what I wanted. Her understanding of the Dutch language is great:) She dit all the transitions lovely and was so nice and quiet in trot. I was proud of her, she is an extremely gentle horse. I hope next week to have our first ride together. She seems to have settled in nicely now and all the steps so far she is doing great so I think she is ready for some riding. I know I am:) I will of course let you know how it goes! With Voelie I just petted her today and stood with her while she ate her hard food. She was really feeling restles because of the weather.

Ride with Me - Janeen's Birthday!

Good Morning Everyone!! Today is Janeen Radtke's Birthday ...and a pretty significant one! She is riding today with a few friends that are able to take off work to go with her, but I can not! I thought this might be a way for me to join her in spirit. Wanna join us?! They are riding at 1:00 this afternoon EST. But I can't ride til at least 5. So head out when you can and sing Happy Birthday to Janeen! W000T!

Happy Birthday Janeen!! Wishing you a fun day and many, many more to come!

Big Talker!

More about Joe - he is learning stuff all the time, but to give you an idea of just what he DOESN'T know, I spent a few extra minutes grooming him today - including tidying up his mane, trimming his bridle path, putting dermal aid on his mane...... just regular stuff, but he was "incredibly" alarmed by all of this, he even pulled back on the tie ring I use and scared himself.  He is just not used to anything that is different.  But I know that the only way to get him used to it is to continue doing it - which I did and he was fine and quiet at the end, but he is truly not used to so many things that I take for granted with most of my other horses!

So then, I rode him and he was good :)  I lunged him for a few minutes, but I think that the day is almost here that I won't need to do that anymore - he is ready for me to just saddle him up and get on (at least I think so)....
When I got on and rode him and he was pretty good but since I went to the Ian Tipton clinic, it reminded me about some of the softness training that I used to pay more attention to and I know that Joe is a bit sticky with this, so I have been focusing on it.  We did that for a few minutes and then he seemed a bit "bucky" swishing his tail and jumping around a bit (not a lot!), but I got off anyway, looked him all over, saw nothing and so got back on - he did this twice and I couldn't see anything.... so we continued on and he was fine.  Now, if we had been further along in our training session I might have thought it was resistance, but it was only a few minutes in,,, so it was something else.  Anyhow, whatever it was, he got over it and we went on to have a really nice ride. 

And then, he did it again!  When I got off, he gave a low whinny to me - ohmygosh he is sweet!
Shelly in Summerland, BC Canada

Tuesday Time


Sassy and I worked on a bit of clicker training this morning. She is pretty polite, but can become a bit exhuberant while walking to the pasture. She started doing this little bounce....its not really a rear.....and its not every time.  I am reading it as exhuberance to be out with her buddies.  She did not bounce she was clicked and rewarded for standing there as I opened the gate....then I like for her to go in ...swing around to face me.....lower her head....and wait....then I release her from her halter.  She did very well with all these except the waiting today. She pawed  during the pause. Im not quite sure what the best way to deal with the pawing is.  Suggestions are MORE than welcome.  What I have been ignoring the action as she is doing it.  As soon as she stops I click and reward the hoof  being on the ground...with the verbal word down. The other times she has pawed in what I perceive to be impatience on her part is when I have walked away from her when she is crosstied.... As I said....Suggestions / Advice is more than welcome!!!!    
 It is still cold here....but they are saying it will warm up just in time for the rain to start!!!  Hope Spring is happening where some of you guys are ♥

                                          ♥ Hugs from Sassy and Krista in Ohio  ♥

           ~and then God Created the Curly Horse ....and it was AWSOME ♥ ~

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Well, I guess the title should be the last few days :)
I have been busy - and getting busier and as that happens I will have less and less time for blogging, but believe me, I will be riding!
So no new photos or anything, but I did want to mention a couple of things.  I have not had any time at all for Joe lately.... and I was really waiting for the snow and ice to get out of my ring, which it has been clear now for a few weeks.....So, yesterday was the day for it and I just now looked back to see on my RAC log sheet that the last time I rode him was February 15th!  Now, that was quite a while ago!  Almost 6 weeks!  I have been noticing though, that Joe has been watching me quite intently lately, as I walk past him to get another horse for riding..... so he was "quite" pleased when I chose him to bring out.  I have to admit it was wiht some trepidition that I began with him, I assumed that he would be a bit "up" or "distracted" or something!  But, no!  He was just about perfect and he was soooo thrilled to be doing something that when I was finished and hopped off him, he gave a little whinny to me :)  What a dear thing he is :)

So I also rode Kobee yesterday - he is better and better all the time - really a good boy and I am enjoying my time with him.  I will say though that I will be happy when he finds a home of his own, so that I can free up a little more time to ride/work some of my other horses!

One more thing that I hope is allowed - it does relate to one of the horses that I do ground work with on a regular basis and that is my s/c Curly mare DKH Lacey.  Lacey came to me quite feral in January of 2010, and I have worked with her over the past year to try to gentle her enough that I can safely handle her when her foal arrived (she was bred to Sandman last year).  Well, in the early hours of today, Lacey gave birth to a gigantic bay Curly filly - we hare thrilled with her of course, but the best news of all is that Lacey is doing her best to accept us handling her foal - I am very pleased with her!  I know that she has given birth to a few foals on the range, so this is a whole new scenario for her - she is in my foaling stall under lights/cameras of course!  So  I will include one photo of our stretch limo (lol) I was up all night last night with the two of them :)

Shelly in Summerland, BC Canada

Monday, March 28, 2011

Old news and New news

I had a helper today with Linus. In the first picture is my son Owen, he will be 3 in June. Loves everything farm related - Linus included! He unfortunately lost the majority of his load that he was "helping" bring to Linus, even though I wasn't yet bringing him his hay. Much to Owen's delight, Linus did eat what little if left on the sides of the "slide". Linus seems to know to tread carefully around Owen and really loves it when any kids come to visit him. Kind of like the cows, he seems exceptionally interested in such tiny people! I also used a sled to bring Linus a full tub of water. I haven't yet connected the hose out to where he is and the entrance is too soft to use the tractor like I had been doing.

Linus was a bit on the wired side when I approached to work with him. I think because I was bringing his tools out in a "new" box. I swapped my upright rolling showbox I used to use at cattle shows and put his brushes and head gear inside it instead. Makes the journey from barn to pasture easier. I would bring Linus to the barn but there isn't sufficient space right now with calving still going on. To get his attention and let him know I was there to work I started by driving him away first thing. He gave a few bucks and put on a show as he went midway down the pasture but he soon showed signs of wanting to work with and I love the way the picture below shows him asking to be my buddy. Head down, chewing (though you can't see that) and his ear on me. I let him come to me after this one and we began our session.

Today the bit was old news. I didn't put it on him yesterday. He had a tack free lesson yesterday. Mostly in manners and socializing with some people who wanted to see him. Anyway, bridle on today and it was old news. He carried on as if he was telling me to challenge him with something he didn't already know...must be turning into a know-it-all teenager...just wait til next month Linus!!
We repeated the same exercises as the other day and I got even more steps in the back up today. Once I was satisfied with his results here I brought in an old water bucket to use to get him used to standing beside a mounting object. Well, whole new ball game with Linus who has to inspect everything to the point that he could tell you how it was built! I let him inspect the tub thoroughly but he seemed to think that it became something new when it was beside him rather than in front of him. After a few attempts however, he was standing beside it. He is pretty good now with Whoa and Stand so it wasn't long before I stepped on top of it....another new ball game!! We did have some fun though while he inspected me on it. It was hard to get a picture that wasn't of his nose (typical curly!) I stood on the top after convincing him standing beside it was the right thing to do and just spent a few minutes scratching his rump, tail head and withers. He loved the whole process.

This photo below was taken with me still standing on the tub. He went to pick up my glove for me and in doing so the reins slid up behind his ears. He didn't bring it back though!! We'll have to work on that part of "fetch". As you can see he had the bareback pad on again. This is just to keep him used to wearing things while being worked with. I have 2 western saddles. The one you normally see on him and one that needed some repairs. They are both with a friend of a friend right now to have some work done. The one usually on Linus could be beyond repair as it is very old. The other one should be good but isn't nearly as comfortable. I find the seat too wide. Maybe it will fit the new pal Linus is getting.....

Dad's Birthday is this weekend and Mom wants to get him a horse of his own. I guess he has mentioned to her in passing about when he helps me and she got the idea. He is unfortunately not a Curly. I don't actually have it confirmed yet what breed he is since it was a friend who told me about him. He is a 6 year old grey gelding. Being parted with because the recently single mother cannot afford his board and upkeep. So, sometime Saturday or Sunday Linus should have a buddy. I will be meeting him Wednesday or Thursday night. I'm really excited to test myself with a new horse and see how things go. It will be nice to go for a ride (after we acquaint and accept of course) but I am really excited to test my groundwork with him. What Linus and I have in our relationship is a buildup of over a year of work together. It's going to be an adventure for sure!

new things

Today I took Suri to walk over the rubber mat. She was not affraid of it at all but her steps are so big that she stepped over it instead of onto it. It took me a couple of tries to get her to take smaller steps so she would stand on the rubber mat but she did great. I love how curious she is, she likes to stick her nose into everything! We also started practicing around the tractor, it is a very old fassioned tractor and it makes lots of noise. She is ok with it when it's driving or standing still but everytime it starts up again it makes such a noise that it scares her:) But it scares most of the horses and I must say it does make too much noise, even for a tractor! With Voelie I practiced working on her head. She has always been a bit head shy, she is ok with me touching the sides of her head and near her eyes but working on her forehead or forelock is different. I brushed softly over her head and she was hesitant but allowed it. Then I started on her forelock, I have not been able to hand groom it so it was quite matted allready unfortunately. I worked quietly on parts of her forelock, mostly to have her get used to me working there but also to try and get some of the mats out. It was partially succesfull. She looks funny now with a part of here forelock being frizzy and part untouched. I will repeat the exercise more often and hope she gets used to it.

Three Rides, One Post

~Susan and *RCR Ah-D-Das in Maine~

Ride # 1 A Low Key Ride Hey! Lookit this give to pressure! I didn’t even “need” to use it last Sunday with Didder because he was so laid back, but we practiced it anyway. I am so impressed with how fast AhD picked up what I was looking for. Sometimes I don’t give his brain enough credit. Kara and Al the Haffie were with us, and they were very impressed. Well, Kara was, anyway. She couldn’t get over how quiet AhD was today. We high-tailed it up to this field so we could canter. It was fun, and there is such beautiful scenery surrounding that field. Afterwards, we let the horses have a treat of dried up grass, and then we thought we would try the wooded trails. WRONG! The snow on the lee side of the field was so high, that the horses were rearing and bucking (sort of) just to get through it! So, we nixed the trail idea, but hey, spring IS coming!

Ride # 2 A High Key Ride Well, today’s ride had both horses doing a complete turn around in attitude! They were go, go, go, and Kara and I had fun, fun, fun! The trails across the street were PERFECT, and I mean perfect. It was not a spring ride, but rather a late winter ride, and a totally beautiful one. It was cold, but we didn’t notice because we had so much fun ramming around on the wonderful groomed trails. Didder was just full of it! Exciting and so rejuvenating to walk, trot and canter (and one run!!!) on a delightfully forward Curly. This is a "wow, that canter was fun "smile. The low point could have been when Kara fell off from a short stop from a canter, but she is agile enough to roll and get right back up, so it was good for quite the giggle from both of us, and really wasn’t a low point at all. We just continued on. And we kept cantering, too. :)

Ride #3 A Medium Key Ride! Sweet! Just AhD and I out with my Labs Grace and Aaralyn. Ruby, my yellow Lab was busy at home taking care of her newborns. My Didder was awesome today. It is cold and windy, WINTER, not spring, so I took right to the woods and we slugged through some high snow spots and ducked branches to get on to that gorgeous trail. We had a pretty jaunty ride. I got one swirl spook, but I just ignored it and kept going. AhD seemed kind of embarrassed about spooking at a flying leaf. Hey, we all make mistakes. He was ready to run anytime I was ready to ask. I was up for a few collected canters, and he threw in a little buck or two to let me know that he really would’ve liked to have been less collected and more stretched out at a dead run. A stern “hey, hey, hey” from me settled him down. He was just feeling really good, like he did yesterday.

We went on this "privet" trail. I didn't feel badly because I figured they only wanted "privecy" from snowmobiles. It was a deer highway down there, tons of sign. This is a gorgeous trail so I have to find out who put up the sign. It is not a dead end, either, but can take us all sorts of places.

AhD stood in this stream for a drink. Check out the icicles. Must have frozen AhD's teeth to have that water sucked in across them.

Sometimes, he would just mosey along the trail, perfectly contentedly, as in the following video. Spring is coming, but it is not here yet. Next weekend??? :)

Home on the Range Endurance Race

Well, we are home from the endurance race. I was so sore yesterday, I could barely walk. Here I prided myself that I was in good shape - yah, right. I guess not so much. Traveler, my husband and my kids and I loaded up the motor home and headed over to the beautfiul Palouse country for the first endurance race of the season. We just went out on the 25 miler - and overall, Traveler was great. I was worried about his "stallion" behavior, but he held it in check for the initial vetting in and was in good shape and vetted through perfectly. He spent the night tied to the trailer and I kept one ear open all night listening for any low nickering, to make sure a mare didn't get loose and visit us in the wee hours of the morning. At one point I thought I heard something and I bolted up right, listening intently, when I realized it was just my husband snoring. LOL. And then the race started. He had been doing really well, listening to me and being under control, and then 50 mares in heat took off at a run and they were leaving him behind! It's very open country and he could see the mares for miles. I jumped off him twice in the first mile and schooled him on the ground to get his head back, and then we were off! He pulled it together, with some help from my crop, and the rest of the race was fun. We trotted and cantered along the top of the ridges and he was the perfect gentleman. Most people had no idea he was a stallion and he vetted through the checks with A's and in good condition. The only trouble I have with him is getting him to pee around other horses - this would cause his heart rate to stay up until he peed, and then it would drop right down to where it should be. The vet said I have to train him to pee - we have had this problem before when Eventing - and he is afraid to let anything hang down in front of me and I know he has to go and is uncomfortable, but he won't. Has anyone had this problem before? How do you train a horse to go pee? I finally got a male friend of mine to take Traveler away from the other horses and me, and then he was able to pee. Always something new to learn...... Here we are on the final way in - he was so much fun to ride after the first mile, when he realized our goal wasn't to catch and herd all the mares. He was just sure they needed him and he was the only one to save them!
My tired boy, resting at the trailer.

Next weekend is my daughter's horse show and then the weekend after that is cross-country training.

The horse circuit has started and we will continue until November. Oh, my husband is so happy!

Getting Riding Season Ready

Good Morning All!! Hope everyone had a great weekend with their Curly Horses. I know that mine aren't really loving me all to much right now. Saturday we loaded up all our horses to go to a vaccination clinic in town. It was our first one that our vet had ever. It was nice to see all these horse people out and making sure their horses are staying healthy. We had all our horses examined to see if their teeth needed to be done along with getting all their vacincations and de-worming. Well Marley and Larry both needed their teeth done pretty badly. As you can see from the photo (Marley would hate me even more if he knew I posted this on here!) Marley is missing a few front teeth so in the gap where they are missing he needed those ground down a bit further. Larry just needed a general float of the teeth, he is only 6 this year and don't know that he has ever been done before. They both also got their area cleaned out too while being sedated being I don't have the guts to do it without them being sedated. Larry was pretty comical in the shoot, he kept his back legs crossed almost the whole time. The vet gave Larry a light dose of sedative and he reacted really well, acctually too well. And gave Marley an even lighter dose. Does anyone know that if sedatives affect curly's differently, that they can't take a heavy dose of it? I didn't know and had to ask. The place where the clinic was held was in a fairground building and they where setting up for the horse auction the next day so both me and my husband where promoting the curly breed, people came over and started talking to us and asking us questions about them while we waited around with them waiting for them to wake up enough to load and drive them safely home. Curly hair is definately a conversation starter! I got other pictures off my phone that I had planned on putting in here but they are so blurry of people petting them and standing next to them. Should have brought the regular camera! I do have one other question for you guys that are reading this. I am trying to get ready for the mini contest coming up and not finding any good bridge patterns online to make a bridge, anyone have something that I could use to see what I need to get to make one and the how to?

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Rick Lamb Radio Show

Hello all! Well, just an update on the airing of The Horse Show.......I received a cd in the mail yesterday from the Lambs, and it was a copy of the radio interview. It evidently was playing this weekend on the different radio stations, but you can also still hear it from Rick's website if you like. The link is Still no word on the airing of the tv program on RFDTV.......and we do not have cable tv here, so I might not catch when it is about to air. If I do find out in advance, I will let you know. I think if we can watch Rick's website updates, it will tell us of upcoming programs. I have been concentrating on the new foals and other farm things lately, and had neglected to keep a check on his website. Sorry! :O) Thanks Ellen for getting the word out too! I had the cd in my possession for a couple of hours before I got a chance to listen - I was in the middle of putting out round bales when I stopped to check the mail.....and there it was! AND I had to move Maelie back to her other pen - she had visitors from Canada this last week - which she loved! But of course, if I was in a hurry, she for sure had her slow walk on..........well, Maelie always has her slow walk on! :O) She is a joy to work with though, and has always done a great job of promoting that Curly personality when we have visitors to the farm. Hope you enjoy the program.......Brandon did a great job speaking, but me........well, you will see when you listen. :O]

Pony with Curls....Pigtails...and a pink helmet kinda a Saturday

Hello Curly Nation!! 
I received one of my new helmets *Had an AH HA moment and am now committed to always wearing one*  yesterday JUST in time to wear it while working with Sassy. So ....I put my hair in pigtails.....put on my pink helmet...and loaded my Pony with curls......The weather has turned back to COLD again..but the sun was out ...and it was a beautiful afternoon. 

I trailered her over to a friends arena and she did very very well in the trailer.  Im pretty convinced that we have overcome the shaking and serious drenching sweat that I was seeing.  Im so glad that leaving the divider pinned to the trailer worked.....and that even tho she was having panic attack symptoms while loaded...she follows me on to the trailer with no issues. To me that is a shining example of what trust ground work builds....and how it carries over into those moments that could end up on You Tube....but thankfully goes wonderfully.

Our goal yesterday was working to elevate her fitness level even tho still on restricted movment and....we worked on smoothing out our transitions.....Sassy tends to want to be a little exhuberant when asked to step up the pace.....and when asked to step it down...takes a step or two more than it should.   She is quick to pick up on what I'm asking and we were much improved by the end of the session.  I love seeing what should be in my minds eye...and then Sassy almost immediately responding!!!  I think mental visualizing is a great tool for us humans to utilize! We walked...circled in each both directions....figured eight....and trotted.  She reloaded in the trailer....rode home...was groomed...and yawned so big I could see thru to  her tail...LLLLOLLLL
Im going to canter her next week if the hock is still behaving...... Wouldnt the whole world be such a better place if every one could have a Pony with helmet Saturday???!!!!


  ~♥then God Created the Curly Horse and it was AWSOME♥ ~
 Horsey Hugs from Sassy and Krista in Ohio

Barb Carroll on the Rick Lamb Radio Show

HEY! Barb and Brandon Bennett were on the Rick Lamb Show this morning!!!! You can access it from the Rick Lamb website. Sorry Denise but I wanted to get the word out to the group!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

More jumping

Hello All,
Friday was Vet day and my horses were the sweetest of course! Abby was checked to make sure she was not in foal and good news she isn't!! I'm very happy about that as I don't know what I would do with a foal this year. She was sedated for the palpation so he floated her teeth while she was out but that meant I couldn't ride her today.

I did get to ride Theo though.. We finally found a local trainer to go to for jumping lessons. So Natalie and I had our first lesson today. This was Theo's 2nd time away from the barn. He was a bit excited at first but once we got in the arena he knew it was work time. The lady was quite impressed with both of us and suggested we come to her show in two weeks to compete! Yikes! I guess it would be great practice for the fair. I get very nervous riding in front of other people but I'm going to put my brave breeches on and do it.
Now I REALLY need to buy a jumping saddle...I can see my husband rolling his eyes already :-)

As for the lesson we did a grid that started out just ground poles and she added on more and more jumps. We ended up jumping a cross rail, vertical, and then a 2'3" oxer. My first real oxer! Towards the end of the lesson we realized my stirrups were uneven the whole time! Once we got that fixed I felt even better about our riding.

Abby's turn tomorrow and I'll try to actually get pictures for you all.

There is only 3 weeks until the Midwest Horse Fair and I think we are ready. I am making curtains for all the Curly stalls. They are made out of crushed velvet which is a pain to sew but I thought it would "match" the Curly coat the best. I just got the ICHO banner in the mail this week too. If anyone is going to the fair just to visit make sure you stop by and say hi!

Until next time Theo, Abby and Blaine
Wisconsin, USA

"bit" of learning

We had a sunny but very cool and windy day here today. I brushed another small horse out of Linus and by the time I was done his coat was shining again. He still kind of looks like a raccoon though because his face hasn't finished shedding.
After grooming, he tried to get testy a few times with me and would not stand to have his feet done. I don't know why but I put it up with it a bit longer than I normally would until I finally got fed up, grabbed my carrot stick and drove him away from me. He knows now that a crack from that (in the air or on the ground - definitely not on him) and I mean business. I flick the end until he gets far enough away from me. If he keeps coming back uninvited, I flick the rope again. When I see him settle I rest it behind me, showing him I will let him back in if he comes nice. Then when he walks over and I "whoa" him, I flick the rope all over his's kind of like our "making up". After doing this with him today I picked up and cleaned out his feet without any trouble at all. I'm glad he is a fast learner....I was especially glad when on my way home saw a girl out trying to catch two yearling Belgians!! I would not be happy having a horse I couldn't catch. I guess I am spoiled having Linus meet me at the gate.
Once I had Linus settled in better I introduced him to a sweet iron snaffle bit. It really occupied him because he always likes chewing on things. I let him just get used to it while I did a bit more grooming. Then I let him sniff the bareback pad and put it on him. He developed a game with this since I bought where now I have to keep the girth strap over his back until I am ready to tighten it. If I let it hang he likes to reach around and pull it off before I get around to the other side to tighten it. Little git!
I then attached the reins to his bridle and tucked the ends through the handle on the pad. I let him get used to weight of the attachment and then we started to work on turning and a little bit of backing. He was excellent with it! I again used my hand on his side to put pressure while turning him and after a few tries he was moving over with the pressure on his side before I even had to touch the reins. I have used a Bitless bridle on Linus for about a year now. He has done very well in it, mostly driving. I find of late though he has been testing me when we are out more and more and really seems to know now that he is the stronger of the two. I haven't used a bit with him yet because I wanted to make sure I was ready for it. I have been worried about getting to tough on him with it and creating a hard mouthed horse. I have done a lot of prep for it and now feel ready and trust myself more. I think my fear of introducing a bit comes from riding a very hard mouthed Canadian/Percheron cross a few years ago. She was so bad that if you let her go you had no control at all until she wanted to stop. I won't have that in my own horse. So, I think we made really good progress today and it went so positively that I think I took more away from it than Linus did!! I kept our lesson at that for today. I was going to lean over him a bit but I ended it on a good note and kept it nice and easy for him.
My pictures didn't turn out very well...hopefully tomorrow!

Donna & Linus
Lunenburg, ON Canada


Today I thought I'd see how Suri would react to me putting a saddle on her. I know she is used to this in Sweden but becuase the place here is new and I am new for her I don't just want to assume she is ok with everything. I don't have a real saddle yet for her but I have my woolen bareback saddle so I took this over to practice with Suri. After a good grooming (she is loosing lots of fur) I saddles her with it ans put on a rope halter too. She was fine with everything and acted as the most experienced horse in the world!
After this I lunged her a bit in walk on both sides (just practising walk and stop). She is such a lovable, sweet, calm, gently, curious and great horse! I am really lucky to have her here!
Voelie of course also got a good grooming, she is also such a lovely young horse.

Here are some pictures of my beautiful Curly girls today

Friday, March 25, 2011

hate love relationship Freedom, and worked a lot of horses

I was planning to ride/work a lot of horses today. It was pretty cold, but no excuses. First I went out to feed the horses and take care of our Big Draft horse. He has a very big nasty wound on his butt. He probably got kicked by another horse ( according to the vet) and Freedom is suspect number one. But innocence until proven guilty! But I got him right in the act today! He gets so hyper when it is feeding time he starts charging at other horses and turns and strike out. This time he got our TWH cross and I got furies!
I send him away from the group but he turned his big curly ass towards me so I throw my lead rope at him and he gave me the WTF look (seen it before with other curly’s must be a curly look hahaha) He went but challenged me and hide behind my big horse Spirit. So it was a bit of a cat and mouse game but in the end I managed to get him out of the herd (of 14 horses) and made him stay in the naughty corner.
I put all the buckets out and made him wait and he was very humble...1-0 for me.
After they were finished eating I took half of the herd to another field where there is some grass coming. I had 4 horses in mind I wanted to work with and Freedom was one of them. But he took off....point for him 1-1
I walked to him and since he was almost the last one left in the field and he thought he was going to that big green field too so I could easily catch him....gna gna 2-1
Mallie was also on the worklist today but I left her in the field, so I had 3 boys tied up at the barn.
(2 quarters and Freedom) One of the quarters has a lot of energy and is very impatiens, he was turning and pawning and did not stand still for one moment. Freedom was next to him and……fell as sleep…unbelievable. Ok extra credit point for him 2-2
I worked the quarters first and started to rain…but again we are not made out of sugar.
First I did some groundwork with him inside the barn (he was saddled) he was trying me out bif time again but it did not work. I was very consistent and had the attitude not today mister so he gave in quick....3-2
Then I took him out and mounted him and ride him around the round pen on the outside. Several times he tried to take of…really take of and tried to take a run back to the field. But again I did not take any bull.... today . I was very patients did not lose my temper just told him this was not the plan, and made him move his hindquarters. Again he gave in very quick and did not start a fuss. After a couple of rounds he did very well so I dismounted and brought him back to the barn and put him in a stall to soak it up for awhile. I was VERY happy how he did and the end score is 3-3 equal partners ( ok 51-49%)

Mallie is very different to work with she is EXTREMLY intelligent. She already know exactly what the next step is and gets bored so I need to be very creative with her. I ground worked her and saddled her she did great. But bucket a bit and was fast and running around in the roundpen, like yeh yeh you want me to go. I finial got her settled in and mounted her. I could feel she was not completely relaxed and I was getting tired too so we just went to the point, foot in the stirrup putting weight on it, standing in it and leaning over her back. It did not felt right to actually sit in the saddle so I didn’t. But I think she did great since this was just the second time for her to be saddled.

Had some fun time with Moose and Lydiker too those two boys are like a salt and pepper set. Side by side thinking what they can pull of this time. So today they took a trip to the girls…..not so funny boys no more free grazing for you two! Now I am exhausted and want my bed ;-)
sorry no pics this time forgot it.

Out for a walk

Today after grooming Suri I took her out on to the road, I led her through the gate and we explored everything along the driveway and then we went for a short walk. To get ready for the april challenge we started looking at the mailboxes (Dutch mailboxes are a bit different, we don't have flags on them and they are made of green plastic). Suri did not mind them at all so I'm sure that challenge will be a succes:)
Then a car (mini van) came towards us. As I wasn't sure how Suri would react I signalled him to go slow and walked in the middle of the road, this is usually enough to slow cars down and keep the situation safe, but this time it was a maniac driver who swerved from left to right over the road and did not slow down at all! He just passed us on the wrong side (really close to Suri)! I was really impressed because she did not mind at all and was really calm, so now I know she is good with cars.
All our groundwork so far is going really well and I am looking forward to having our first ride together.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Exploring the grounds

Today after grooming Suri we went exploring around the grounds. I let her snif and look at everything on the terrain. We had tractors, barrels, the barn, a slab of concrete, rubber mats, a pile of bricks and probably more that I am forgetting now. She is very curious and easily accepst if I ask her to look at something. She then sniffs and touches whatever it is with her nose and gets rewardes with lots of scratches and cuddles. I am so glad and impressed with her being so curious, it makes the training more fun and easier. Suri is such a sweetie. I am already getting used to her and am really enjoying spending time with her.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Hi I'm Sassy~I have Naturally CURLY hair~What's your SUPER power?

Hello Curly Horse Bloggers
It has been awhile since I blogged, so thought I would catch up a bit.  Sassy and I have been working daily on something ... Target/clicker exercises....ground manners......standing *she does well but if I walk out of her sight....she paws  the ground* ...... and grooming. We have also unlocked the mystery of her ....sweating / shaking when on the trailer!!!  I have a step up slant load....and she has always gone in the front with the divider closed...Experimented and left the divider hooked to the wall..NO sweating...No shaking...YAYYYYYYY   Best guess here is she was having a lil Curly Claustraphobic panic attack!!!!

 I really love/enjoy Sassy's "CurlANality" She is such a character.  I discovered the other day that she likes to untie she now has a modified lead rope tied in knots hanging in her stall.....and she has them untied by breakfast time the next morning!!

Her back right hock is still swollen....but we were cleared to do limited restricted to flat arena! I was so excited!!! I had not had her under saddle since Nov!!!!! I had no idea how she was going to feel about the whole back in the saddle thingy....but she did BEAUTIFULLY!!!! I took my I-Kam glasses along ...I had NO idea until I downloaded it that I was GIGGLING uncontrollably in my first few moments back in the saddle... What a wonderful power to give the gift of laughter and happiness....that is what my curlies do for me.....Thought I would share the video with you guys :!/video/video.php?v=10150121281438818&oid=200154400002067&comments
Well Hello there Sassy Style

On my Incredible Curly

Both my Curly Girls

Love how her eyelashes flutter close when I give her a kiss

Curly Kisses

~And then God Created the Curly Horse & it was AWSOME ♥ ~

Horsey Hugs from Sassy and Krista in Ohio