Saturday, November 9, 2013

It's Official!!

It is official, we are entered in the Cornwall Christmas Parade next Saturday! Just 3 weeks ago we were like "no way, not Cornwall. It is too close and it is the biggest one in our area!" So we are either really dumb or really brave...or a bit of both. I signed the forms this morning and the girls came up with a name: We are the "LunenCornerSider Trail Riders" (2 are from Lunenburg, 1 is from Harrison's Corners and 1 is from Ingleside) ha ha ha! We had to come up with something! And they needed a short blurb about who we are so I got to put down that 2 of us are riding hypoallergenic Curly horses. One is smooth and one is Curly and that is going to be announced on local TV!! Freakin cool or what?!


The Parade Marshal is a friend and country neighbour so I after I left his place this morning I went to the farm. We had not planned to get together this weekend because some of the girls were away etc. Then my phone rings and it is Bernie. She says "What are you up to?" I told her not much at the moment. She said "Well I'm coming up the side road, you up for some road work and parade training" I told her of course, just let me get Owen set up with his movie (my Dad was home, I wasn't leaving a 5 yr old unattended!) and I'll tack up. I was still grooming when Bernie arrived but Linus was really good to stand for me to tack him while his buddy was there waiting. 

We took off and since I had been planning on some ground work I had my bag of noisy things with me! Bernie was really excited to try some of it. So we blew up balloons and batted them around and made them squeak. I mounted up and we played with the tambourine and turned the parade music on. AND we brought a portable air horn with us too!! You know the kind that says not to use around animals...

Linus BLEW me away! He was so good! And because I out with Bernie, I asked her to take some video so I can finally show you we actually do all the things we talk about! haha, I think we drove all the hunters away though. We didn't even think about it until after we had ridden the whole length of the road playing music, banging tambourines and blasting air horns!! I'm sure that about took care of all the local deer!

In some of it I find you cannot hear the music. Especially in the one where I am singing for you Harold!! Oh speaking of which, I know my videos did not co-operate for you last time Harold. I use the blogger uploader so it should show you an arrow in the centre of the picture to click or somewhere along the bottom. The 3 items below are all different videos though. 
We met a neighbour who had been out for a walk and she pet our horses, she just loved them! She said she brings her grandkids to the parade so will make sure she hollers out for us to wave!
We raided the $1 store so we have LOTS of decorations!






Linus had his vaccines yesterday and my Vet could not believe the changes in him. People who saw Linus as a youngster ask me if I got a new horse because he has really grown into himself. He said Linus was in "fantastic shape" and he was really impressed with everything about him and found him to be very mature for a 4 year old. He also loved how friendly Linus is with him. I think he is used to horses snubbing him but Linus just loves everybody! Even those that give him needles! Which he didn't even flinch for! I was on cloud 9...or 109 after getting compliments like that from the Vet!!!

Donna & Linus
Lunenburg, ON

11 comments:

  1. wow Donna great job, loved the singing, great videos and you have done a wonderful job with your horse, he looks to be enjoying himself, even when you were singing, HEHEHEHE, you should be on cloud nine and very proud of yourself, I know I am proud of you.!!!

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  2. That is awesome! I can't wait for the blog after the parade! I don't think you could have prepared him any better. And you had me laughing about the deer. My husband would have had a fit if I did that anywhere near his camp.

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  3. Janeen we felt bad after we thought about the fact that people were out hunting! But I saw a big pile of guts across from a trail we rode by today so must be ok!
    Thanks for the encouragement from you both! I'm really excited and can't wait to tell you all about it! Today was cold and rainy so I spent 4 hours working on costumes!

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  4. Just a few words of caution for you Donna. =] Parades, even small ones can be overwhelming. There is just SO much for a horse to take in. If you have a group of horses you are riding with, it helps alot. The worst part is the waiting at the beginning. They often don't start on time and they want you to line up early...so you could be standing around for a bit of time. And getting the line up is where you will meet all the various floats, bikes, sirens, people waiving flags, flashing lights, spinning snowmen or whatever etc. Once it begins, it's usually cheesecake because you get yourself in a spot and all your horse sees is the float in front of you and lots of people on both sides..and the horses usually love seeing all the people. If your parade throws candy, kids will be bouncing around with plastic bags and darting all over the place trying to pick it up. Our horses were usually pretty curious about all of that...and if you feed them treats from a plastic bag, they may want to go over and see if the kids have a treat for them rather than fear it. =] I would say for me, the most crazy time is AFTER the parade. Because depending on how they have public leaving, people are leaving and zipping up from behind you as you work your way back to the trailer. I did a Thanksgiving parade at dark with Reese and it was in a big city compared to the others I had done and it was quite crazy! We had to ride our horses down main street, with lights flashing all over and cars flying by us. Praise God Reese had done quite a few parades. There are lots of things you can do to prepare Linus for this - especially get him used to a little "city life" - if you can ride him through town...with cars....maybe have a few kids stand by the road, shaking plastic bags...or waiving flags...holding umbrellas. that sort of thing. Because EVERYTHING you encounter will be "out there" not something you are carrying or you are saying. So that would be my suggestion. maybe tie balloons in the trees and tin plates in the trees...just do what you can to make the environment around you noisy.....and see how he reacts when you pass those things. Does that make sense? It was funny with Bear on the 4th of July - for some reason he was especially "tight" as we headed to the line up. In the past there had been 3 of us, and I put him right in the middle. This time it was just 2 of us and he may have been feeling just a bit more insecure. I could feel his neck was like a rock! LOL My friend wanted to be at the front of the parade, DIRECTLY in front of the ambulance and fire truck! So we had to walk past just about every thing you can image. =] Well, we clung pretty tight to the float in front of us, which was a group of veterens... and Bear did really well.....but still tight (moving slow, looking at everything) til about 1/2 way through and then he let out a few loud blows and lowered his neck..as if to say..."ok, looks like this stuff isn't going away! I may as well just relax!" LOL. It can be a great way to desensitize your horse....but you never know just what you will encounter. The biggest thing is having a nice solid group of riding horses around Linus and you. It will be your safe haven....you will be just fine., =]

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    1. Great advice Denise! I did several parades as a youth, and a couple as an adult...and the chaos AFTER the parade made me chose not to do any more parades.....a good plan is to have your horse trailer parked at the end of the route, so you don't have to fight traffic and comotion at the end....my friend drover her mini in a local parade and found it very overwhelming to get herself and mini back to their rig safely...good advice !!!!

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  5. Thanks for the tips Denise! You're right actually, the starting point is going to be the most chaotic part of it all. There will be 4 of us riding. Our plan is to get together Saturday morning and we have helpers that are going to make noise, jump out etc. We're going to arrive early so the horses have time to settle and take it all in. We've tested them in small town traffic. The way Linus handled being so close to that 18 wheeler has me confident about traffic! I am a bit concerned about all of the people because he is such a social butterfly and really thinks he has to meet everyone. And we are having someone move the trailer to a parking lot near the end of the parade for us. It's going to be a 2 - 3 hour ride. Thanks so much for your pointers! I will share them with the girls so we can all maximise our exposure this week!

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  6. You two look so comfortable together and you look so nice and easy in the saddle. Great song! :) Looking forward to hearing all about the parade- wow, you even finagled TV coverage!

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  7. Thank you Susan! It's really nice to hear that we looked relaxed! I've never felt as relaxed on a horse as I do with Linus. The parade bling is coming along awesome! The girls tease me that I when I do something I don't hold back! I told them Dad always said anything worth doing is worth doing right! Can't wait!

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  8. Oh Donna just awesome and Denise is right, just be alert and you should have no problem, put your chaps on over the longjohns cause the weather is cold, I know I sound like an old woman telling her adult kids how to dress,
    Good Luck

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    1. one more thing and I will shut up maybe, never totally relax you legs, harder to get unseated that way....

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  9. Harold I so appreciate your thought! We're supposed to warm up and it may even be 8 degrees for the Parade! I'm sure the adrenaline alone is going to keep me warm!

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