Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Teamwork!

It was so cool and beautiful while I was at the farm on my lunch break. I couldn't resist taking the chance to throw the bareback pad on Linus and have a little ride. Last week didn't present us with many opportunities to do much of anything! Linus doesn't mind trees at all when going through the bush or trails but he never did like the sound of leaves rustling above him if it was a single tree in an open spot, like on the lawn. So, we have a creative way to work on that!! Because leaves make a nice treat but he can't reach the ones from the tree in the pasture (they already have it well trimmed!) I decided to help. As you can see from the pictures below, leaves above his head are no longer a problem!!
I was alone at lunch but we all ate at the farm tonight so I got my hubby to come out with me after supper to take some pictures. I am surprised we ended up with any because he was laughing so hard at us!!



Teamwork for a tasty treat!


When he was done chewing Linus would stand and put his head up then look at me...I'd like some more please!










Love this shot he took through the leaves!



The cows were curious about what we were up to. Maybe next time I will take him in so we can cut a calf from the herd. Linus likes to do that!!


We had a fun and relaxing little bit of time together today! Loved it!!

Donna & Linus
Lunenburg, ON

Getting Lost Can Still Be Fun!

A 5:45 am text to my neighbor Kate led to a trail ride in the Marshall Pond area on Ah-D and Jax. 
Ah-D spying Jax arriving at our house
Yes, we did get lost, but wow, what a beautiful area in which to get lost! And, I finally found the way to get from one side of Marshall Pond to the other side by trail.  I did that, 15+years ago with other friends and horses, so I knew it could be done, but this was the first time I was able to replicate it.  PERHAPS I will be able to repeat some of this trail ride and exclude the "lost" part...but no guarantees.
 
We armed ourselves and our horses with bug juice, and the deerflies were really only bad near the pond.  Wow, did we see some beautiful country. Ah-D was feeling really laid back and behaving like a peach, other than dwadling a bit too much and trying to get away with munching on an occasional leaf.
 
At about the halfway mark (hmmm....or what should have been the halfway mark), Kate and I switched horses.  Jax (Saddlebred cross?) has an issue with pitching a fit sometimes during the trot transitions, and I was hoping to help out Kate by working with him on that.  I did, and it was fun and challenging.  I think he has just learned he can scare his rider by doing that, and once the rider makes him knock it off and keep going, he is generally good.  He also has trouble with the trot/canter transition, and I think that maybe what has led to his gyrations when you make him trot when he doesn't feel like it.
Kate on Ah-D in Marshall Pond
 
Meanwhile, Kate was enjoying Ah-D, especially since he's so willing to canter to catch up with Jax.  We talked back and forth about the difference between our two guys.
  


a beaver dam we found along the way

Kate on Jax, pine needle trails - love those!



A view of the pond over Jax's ears for a change!

 


 
Kate on Ah-D  talking with someone she knew
We met a lot of nice people once we exited the woods on the other side of Marshall Pond.  We stopped several times to let kids pet our ponies. I felt like we were playing Seven Degrees from Kevin Bacon, because she met someone she knew and I met someone who knows a good friend of mine from work.  My work friend John used to live on Merrill Hill Road, and he told me a couple of times about a trail that met the Hebron Academy trails, and Frank, the guy I was jawing with, told me about the very same trail.  Kate and I tried to follow his directions...and that is where the lost part of this tale rears it's head.  We finally decided to back track and try to go home the way which we came in by following horse tracks backwards, and that put us on an Old County Road that leads right up to Hebron Academy.

check out the sculpture on this guy's lawn..pretty sure this is where my friend John used to live!
 We sure visited some beautiful country!  I wonder if I will be able to find my way back here by trail again?  ;)  ~Susan and Ah-D in Maine~
 

Monday, July 29, 2013

Far away visitors! I mean REALLY far :)

This past weekend I had some really awesome guests from MONGOLIA.  One of my guests was my good friend who lives in Mongolia with her husband (they are there for work) and the other two were a couple that they have become friends with over the years that they have lived there.  These visitors from Mongolia have never been on a holiday, never been on a plane, never left Mongolia and now here they are in Canada having an amazing holiday!..... What I can say though is that they CAN really ride horses! 

I have to admit that I was a bit apprehensive about taking out these people who don't really speak any English (thankfully my friend speaks Mongolian) and I was also quite proud to be able to put 5 out of 7 riders on Curlies!  The two exceptions were my partner Warren (he was on his NSH) and my other friend who was taking the picture for us (she was on her own horse).

The riders and horses are (from left to right)
 
Warren on his NSH

Baagii (he is a REAL horseman!) on *Charm
Saraa (Baagii's wife) on *Serenade
Me on *Tessa
Julie (my best friend) on *Cuervo
Anastasia on *Joe
 
The highlight of the day though, was Baagii asked if he could gallop *Charm and I said sure, so we went to the top of a hill and he came galloping up after us - he was standing up! (Mongolian style!) on my beautiful Curly horse *Charm!  It was amazing and I sure wish that I had managed to get a photo of this, but I will forever have the memory of it!
 
Here is one more of us on the trail:


 
Shelly in Summerland, BC Canada



Saturday, July 27, 2013

Just for the heck of it.....

I haven't been riding much lately -- how the heck can I win a contest that way? -- but tonight I was riding and ended up at the neighbors who have a second place not far from me and when we got near the door, Corky let our a whinny, as if to say 'Howdy, neighbor!  How are you?'  And this was even before I could say hello to them.  Then as the wife came out the door, he did it again to say hello to her.  It was right on cue and I got a chuckle out of it.

It made me realize that even though I know he talks around me, he has done this to total strangers a couple of times now.  So I began to wonder how many of your Curlys are talkers?  Inquiring minds want to know!

Sorry no pictures.  Nothing exciting happening on my rides of late.

Janeen and Corky
Upper Peninsula of Michigan

our holliday part 2

Because of our holiday i don't have a lot time to ride, and if i ride i don't have a buddy to make pictures so today my aldust daughter wanted to shoot some pictures...
Bucky is doing better every day on the lunge and learns real fast!
he can galop on the lunge as i made a sound.
Cinderella and i had difficult with the STOP....
i mean when you go in galop and you want to stop immidiatly!
now this went very well also!
very proud of cinderella and bucky.
just 2 more weeks and the school holiday for kids will be over and  i get a big paddock/pastern(??), to ride.....offcourse i will miss my kids when they go to school again but can't wait till to get back in the sadle and start our training again.
 


 
on the last picture you can see Cinderella wants to
whisper in Bucky's ear!!!
 

Friday, July 26, 2013

Evening ride to the Cafe House

Yesterday was a busy day.

The last two weeks we had to bring in the hay, bales and bales of hay. Just when the first batch was in from the field, a guy who provides us good quality hay called and said, his hay was ready for pickup and off we went shuttling hay in the hay wagon from his place to ours. Hubby throws all the bales by hand up. Some weigh 12-14 kgs (so about 22-28 lbs) and the round bales we get from the other guy, weigh about 22-25 kgs (44-50 lbs). In between mowing our lower field and a week later the upper field the straw delivery arrived. Hubby throws all the straw bales by hand into the loft too. Of course, I'm the one who stacks. Slowly over the last weeks, the barn filled to brimming. And, although we have almost no more room, hubby is thinking about mowing a steep mountain field on the property, which we will have to bring in by hand due to the steepness (well, a little ways until we can get it to the tractor). Phew.



In all this, there was little time to do anything with the horses. And, with the extreme heat we've been having, the horses weren't really inclined to do anything either, given the biting horseflies and mosquitos after the flooding this year. We've been sweltering now for several weeks, which is the reason why it was a great haying season. So, yesterday my friend dropped by, while I was slowly catching up on left over chores. Giving the boxes a good sweeping out, instead of the rush rush mucking out while haying was going on. Clooney got a bath (he wasn't feeling very well in the heat), Billy Jack got a bath, and all the stallions got a good romp about. Cleaning, chatting, washing, putting things away the day went on. Washing was great because we got to cool off too as the water hose sprayed about.

Finally, as the sun started to go behind Grassberg (Grass mountain), it cooled off enough for a ride. We had heard that on Sunday the temperatures would rise to 102.2 degrees Fahrenheit. We had to get the mares out of here and up onto the mountain where they can go into the forest and be cool as the open stall boxes are probably going to be too warm. We never get temps this high mind you, we are in the Alps, you know...like Sound of Music or Heidi. So, my friend who helped me, and I saddled up for a ride to the mountain pasture. We took the village route going along the back roads. It was comfortable, the sun was gone but it was still very light out. People were sitting on their balconies crying greetings to us, inviting us for a drink, and generally coming out after hiding all day indoors. Mind you, no one has air conditioning here.

We made our way along past the old Heimathaus (an old farmhouse turned into a museum) that is on the road a bit above the village so we could look down and also around at all the mountains. Once almost in the center of town, we turned right and went down a small road that landed us at a parking lot in the village, and the Cafe House with its outdoor terrace where one can sit outside. There were lots of regulars there, and as we dismounted I saw the Innkeeper and asked her if it was ok to come into the garden, she nodded, as she has let us do this often before. We entered the garden terrace and sat down, each of us with a horse at our side and ordered a drink. There of course was lots of commotion, as the regulars laughed and enjoyed our visit with the horses. It's a yearly ritual, and everyone knows it is summer when the curlies arrive at the Cafe. After a nice cool drink, we mounted again (of course paying the tab) and road up the mountain to the pasture just before it got dark, and turned the mares loose with their friends to romp and be happy. There they can keep cool in the trees, and hopefully avoid the worst of the coming heat wave.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

our summer holliday!

we now have summer vacation, the children have also holiday from school  so much time to ride i don't have.
I train a lot with bucky and play quietly with cinderella.
Unfortunately I have no one who can take pictures so I can't show much.
I wanted to let you know i still train.and i am stille there.
Bucky  could not only gallop on command ( on the lunge), and finally he understood!
He did it!
I'm proud of him and I let it asap seen on photo or movie!

greetings marjolein
there also was a fotographer to make a photo shoot for a verry nice magazine but i tell you all about it later!


Hacking Around Town

 

 
Evening shadows
That heat and humidity in Maine broke just enough for Ah-D and I to enjoy two evening rides the past two days.

Nothing spectacular to report, but in this case no news is good news because both rides were so enjoyable and laid back.  Love my Curly, love riding with family and friends, life is good!


My son Ian on Al
Sunday evening after a fantastic family trip as local Maine tourists (we went to the Penobscot Bay Observatory and Fort Knox), Ian and I braved the deerflies to take the "Jim and Nancy Loop" across the road.  Ian likes that one because we go fairly fast on the way home, as fast as Al is willing to go. :)  All four of us were very well behaved and not that fast...but Al did give Ian a really nice canter on the very last leg home, so that was nice of him.  When we crossed through our neighbor's dooryard at the beginning of the trip, Ah-D was spooked by the kids swimming and splashing in the pool.  Thank God for muscle memory is all I can say.  He was really startled and spun around, but he didn't take off, and when I turned him back around, he put his trust in me and passed by those horse-eating scary wet fun-loving kids. :)  What a good boy he is!

Monday evening Terry came for an after work ride.  I just love those rides!
Terry on Al

 
Riding the edges of a big field

We dawdled everywhere we went.  The horses were very relaxed.  We tried to avoid the deerflies, and they weren't that bad! We veered off Back Street to ride around the edges of a big field and also to take a small grass/dirt road.  Terry is working her way up to becoming comfortable at trotting.  Last night, she ALMOST cantered on Al...maybe next time!  She wants to go back to Popham Beach; that wish sure doesn't hurt my feelings any!!!  She said our beach ride last October was one of the best experiences of her life.  So, so glad I invited her! I also had an incredible time. 
I am not wishing the summer away, though.  Horses are not allowed on Popham until October, andAhd-D and  I have plenty more rides between now and then, God willing. I also have an Acadia National Park ride and/or drive on my mind lately, I just need to find a way to make it happen.
 
Happy Trails!
~The Maine Tourist Board, AKA Susan and Ah-D~

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Big Day for Linus!!

What I thought would be a regular barrel session today turned into a pretty big day for Linus. My hubby helped me move the barrels out to the front pasture and I tacked up. I forgot I had some rope reins that might be a bit easier to use for the barrels and they sure were! Linus stood as still and calm as in the pictures from yesterday for me to tack and mount up. He's such a good boy! Of course though the first thing he had to do was knock a barrel over while I was adjusting another one!! Dad now calls it "knock the barrel over" rather than turtle racing...I think we're moving up in the world!! At least we don't knock barrels over when we're running them...or walking them...I was happy that we trotted the entire pattern today!


After a few runs of the barrels, my husband, nephew and son came out front to watch and of course then the boys wanted a ride. Below is my almost 11 year old nephew, Griffin. He has always loved Linus and remembers the day we brought him home. It has been a thrill for him to watch Linus grow and now be able to ride him. 


Linus has always had a HUGE soft spot for kids!


Griffin was very thrilled that I let him ride Linus all by himself today. Linus followed me like there was a lead on him, but it gave Griffin a huge thrill. Especially when he actually did have to make Linus start moving on his own. He lives in the city and these opportunities for him are huge!!


Big smiles like that are PRICELESS!!!


Owen's turn!! Owen is my son and just turned 5 in June. He adores Linus and the feeling is definitely mutual!


He says he feels like a knight when he rides Linus. You can't see it but he has a Star Wars light sabre on his waist. He didn't want to get off, he was having so much fun! He kept wanting to go faster!


What a team they make!


Having a horse this awesome with kids just makes him worth his weight in gold!!


I had gotten off and realized I was the only one who rode Linus today but didn't have my picture taken....and I did promise Harold after all!! Obviously the sun was right behind me, I didn't notice this because Griffin was taking the picture. 


A little bit clearer!


We attempted a few shots like the oh so adorable ones that Denise had taken. The sun and Allie were not really cooperating though. In the distance my husband was keeping her away from us. She is very intrigued with Owen and he has no fear...she sometimes does so I like to keep her away from him in case she kicks first and asks later.


Nothing cuter than a little guy and his horse.


The sun rays kind of add a bit of character to this photo.


Puppy love ain't got nothing on Linus and Owen!



Griffin wanted to have a go at bareback. Linus was looking for treats in my Dad's pockets. He ended up flipping Dad's belt buckle right off and I had to laugh because it was actually MY Angus belt buckle that I had bought at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair in Toronto. I wore it to show that weekend and my Dad has "borrowed" it ever since. I bought it about 10 years ago, so it was a justified laugh! Dad was able to bend the prongs back on and fix it. 


I have the best helpers when it comes to moving barrels. This barrel went for a trip around the majority of the pasture before it got put away! Oh well, he sure had fun!

Off topic, after supper we baled hay and my Dad beeped at us from the tractor. He was pointing towards where the cows were so I thought a calf was stuck or something. The problem was a mama Mallard duck had her 3 ducklings out for a walk and she was desperately trying to get out of Dad's way but the babies were getting stuck in the hay. So, my husband and I had to pick the little ones up and move them out of the way. Mama tried pulling the broken wing to draw us away tactic but it didn't work! We got the babies to safety and afterwards saw them all reunited in the "pond that shouldn't be" in the cow pasture. They were so cute and so tiny! It was nice to help them. Of course I had left my phone in the house so couldn't get a picture! Hope everyone had a great weekend!
Donna, Linus and the boys'

Blog Archive