Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Back in the Saddle Again!

Due to unfortunate events last month (the loss of my younger brother to an automobile incident with a moose), I have made the decision to move home.  This means that I will be able to finish out the year for the competition.  I hope that everyone has been having a good time riding and enjoying time with their Curly friends.  I wish you all the best of luck and look forward to hearing more about how everyone is doing.
xoxo-Beth


Thursday, August 13, 2015

Eventing

I know it's been awhile since I've posted and it looks like the same for a lot of people so I don't feel so bad.

I've been so busy this summer with competitions and lessons that I just haven't had time to sit down and recap all that has happened.

First things first Theo and I have successfully completed 3 Novice level events.  We had some stops during cross country so didn't place so high but from what I hear finishing a novice course your first time out is a pretty big deal.  Back in May I thought I was going to die when I did the course walk but after my last event Training level is looking fun...

I'll just recap our first even cause the others I didn't get good pictures

 This one had me up all night...I couldn't believe I signed up to jump this...on purpose.











But after saying no once....


He jumped it with ease...


 I didn't think this one would give us problems after the big blue jump but Theo stopped here too...Thankfully after a second attempt he jumped it and we were clean sailing the rest of the way home.

After 3 stops on cross country I knew we were out of the placings so Stadium was going to be a learning experience.  Theo tends to get into the stadium ring and think "It's jumping we must go fast!"  I used this time to school and we had the best stadium round ever.  We got over our first Triple bar, which I swear was training level height and width" and ended with just one rail down.




Monday, August 10, 2015

Unexpected Surprises, Parades, and Success



It's been so long since my last post (insert shocked face here).  Honey and I entered Waterbury's "Not Quite Independence Day" celebration at the beginning of July.  It was a blast and we dressed up as Patriotic Flappers!

Honey currently has some white line disease issues in one front foot and has quite some time off due to it and being a bit ouchy.

Kai managed to get some exercise today with playing in the arena (barrels, poles, wooden planks, street cones, and small jumps).  We did also learn that she probably wont make much of a jumper ;) knocking the pole down is just more fun and less work.

Kai also got her first ever full body hose down today (started dramatic and ended with comfort).  It has been so much fun and such a great experience working with her and having the opportunity to start from the ground up with her.

I will unfortunately not be able to participate in this competition for much longer :(
I am moving to Rutland at the end of the month.  Kai will be coming with me but Honey will be staying home with her mama.

So here's to unexpected surprises, parades, and success!  Best wishes to you all and I will continue to post of my work with Kai and any other Curly activities that may happen ;)
xoxo
Honey & Bethany

Sunday, June 21, 2015

to ride... or not to ride...

that is the question! At least sometimes when one has got a bad day. I had such a day yesterday, when I didn't really fell well.

Nevertheless, I went to the stable and collected Julia from the pasture. She was in a rather wicked mood and tried to chase any horse that was a few meters away grazing peacefully away from us. I assume, there have been some changes in the hierachy of the herd lately and that Julia has once again managed to increase her rank a bit. She tends to get extra dominant then. :P

Anyway, I had had a bad day so far, so my intention was to take a look at her, groom her a bit and assure nothing is wrong, then let her go back to her favourite leasure time activity, grazing. Well, as intended, I started to groom and while I was at it, someone else came back from riding her horse. And we talked a bit, and eventually during our talk I told her that all I would do today is groom a bit. She looked at me with a rather confused expression and pointed at Julia. And she asked why the horse was saddled if I wanted to let her go outside again and not ride. Doh!!! Routine took over! I did indeed started grooming, then saddled.. and.. well, since the saddle was on... went for a ride. :P So much for not feeling well and taking a day off!

As you all know by now, I'm riding 'western' style. Currently, I'm considering buying a new saddle pad and am not too sure which one to take. I'm thinking about a felt pad (full felt) or maybe wool and felt. I'm wondering what works best with all the curls. The fleeze one (Reinsman, I think it was) seems to be a collector of curly fur during shedding times and stops transporting sweat as it should thanks to all the tiny curls stuck to it. I tried brushing them off, but it's pretty useless and I gave up after several attempts. Any suggestions on which type of pad works well with curly fur? (I'm only taking high quality, long lasting products into consideration).





Thursday, June 11, 2015

Busy summer of working has begun!  Had a wonderful ride on Honey this afternoon and miss Kai is coming along wonderfully.  She's picking up and holding her front feet, letting me rub all over, and giving well to pressure.  Still working on leading though, that one is good for short distances lol.  Three more weeks and Honey will be in our towns "Not Quite Independence Day" parade :) means its time to get working more often.  I am hoping that when my schedule shifts, she and I will have more time together on trail and in the ring.
More later.
xoxo Honey & Bethany

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Hanging in there...

... or rather, hanging onto!
Today was quite the ride! Thanks to the wind and people doing whatever, the curly horse lost it's usual calm demeanor and got considerably jumpy. It started already on the way to the outdoor riding ring that she seemed to feel a bit insecure. When I tried to mount, she got scared, jumped aside and galloped forward, with me not really up but hanging onto her side. It was.. interesting.
I learned a great deal.. a) western saddles rock! even without a perfectly tight girth, they don't slide of the horse (provided they fit well) b) I'm not likely to fall off, no matter what, and I do manage some athletic climbing on a jumpy galloping horse. :) c) western saddles are hard and unusual usage can lead to bruises.

The rest of the riding went very well though. As did the past days and I've got the feeling that the horse and I are getting better and better and finally are forming a 'team'! It's also becoming more and more fun to train and trail ride lately.


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Spring riding!

It's been a while since I managed to post about us and this will be yet again a rather short post.
Riding or no riding, that was the question lately! Mostly I ended up riding and training lots, however, the few 'free' days I had over the last weekend ended up cleaning the stable instead of riding. Though it didn't train the horse, it surely trained me. :) And after all, it's a noble task to get everything clean and in order. Nevertheless, I've been looking forward to riding and yesterday I finally managed again and ended up with a 1 1/2 hour ride. First it was a lot of training and then a nice short trail ride. I like to end any training/ride with a trail ride, no matter how 'short' it is. Today, after work, there wasn't much time left and I got to the stable wondering if I get to ride at all, but when I arrived, the others there urged me to join them. So I sprinted to get the horse from the pasture, brushed her in no time and was ready in time for a short, bareback trail ride with a group of people and their non-curly horses. Before we went on the ride, the others examined the curly and said, she had grown again. I probably looked quite confused and took a closer look and .. doh!.. she did grow more!!! I hadn't really noticed.. probably because I see her every day. But they were right. My 'smaller sized' curly is growing into a rather 'large' horse! :P I wonder how huge she's going to be. Getting on without a saddle is slowly turning into gymnastics, hihi.

Sadly, I don't really get to take many pictures at the moment and didn't find enough time to post any. I hope I can post more in the future so that you all can see the horse too and not just hear about her.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Oh What A Night! :)


Tonight was a blast.  Kaelyn got to practice some around the world on Honey tonight as well as work on trusting her and herself.  She got to work on her balance too which was a plus.  Even Cynthia and Mike got on to try some around the world.  I too got to do some around the world and enjoy miss Honey's trust that her and I have built up.  Did some stretches with her to help her back, abdominals, and lumbo-sacral joint.  She also got a pedicure ;) such a spoiled happy girl.  Miss Kai was very kissy and lovey tonight as well.
-Bethany

Comfy
Love this mare!

Stretch! or as Mike says "chillaxing"

Around the World
Kai kisses!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Fun

The past few days I've been trying to keep up the riding experience during April and managed to ride almost every day. As before, it's lots of fun.
It's the first year, that I can acctually ride this much. The horse is becoming more and more trained with increased stamina and starts to have fun galloping. Having a rather tricky (as in dominant) horse, she's not always easy to convince to do something and has her own opinion of many things. But the more I ride, the better it works and the more fun we have. I usually start with some schooling in the outdoor riding ring and then continue with a short trail ride. Today, there was a lot of noise at the stable and she got very anxious as she couldn't figure out what the noise was (some machines cutting wood and other work stuff). So I changed my plan of a pure long trail ride to schooling and then a shorter trail ride. It was great weather, the sun was shining and it was fun training and afterwards riding through the forest. It's very relaxing and invigorating at the same time to go out riding on a beautiful day without any worries or work related stress.
I hope everyone else had a great weekend with good riding times as well!

Friday, May 8, 2015

Curly Horse Senior Project


Complete!

Well I can finally say that I have done it!  My senior project based around the Curly Horse breed in complete.  If anyone is interested in a copy I will gladly send you one.  This project has been a lot of fun and I have expanded my knowledge so much by doing it.  This is something that I am truly passionate about.  Unfortunately the paper is much too long for me to post on this blog, but if you would like a copy feel free to email me at bhannahp@comcast.net and I will very gladly send you one.  Thank you all for your support and help in this endeavor!

~Bethany


Wednesday, May 6, 2015

What a Perfect Day!

What a view.


With all of this heat and direct sunlight its been too hot to ride here.  This morning was mellow enough to get out and spend some time in the saddle though.  Thank goodness!  Took Honey out on the trail outback through the woods to see just how many trees came down on the pathway.  Come to find out that we had to bushwhack most of the way due to the trees and large branches covering large sections of the trail.  Honey was a champ and with a little reminder to slow down and look where her feet were going we made it from one end to the other, no problem. She even got a good hosing down.
This is her "of thank goodness we are done" face.











After our hose off.





What a character


















I also spent some time working with Kai again this morning.  We have been doing lots of round penning and some work on giving to halter pressure for leading.  She's starting to become more patient and willing to work with me on the halter pressure.  She has also found her sassy spunk and really enjoys kicking up her heals when she runs.  Kai is still itchy as we haven't been able to get all of her winter coat off yet and so she's been rubbing on the fence rails and knocking a few down.


Talent.


Overall it has been an amazing couple of weeks and the weather has finally improved to melt the snow and clear off the outdoor riding ring.  Here's to a summer of working horses and having fun! :)

~Honey & Bethany

Sunday, May 3, 2015

April!

First of all,  congrats to Cyndi and everyone else who took part in the April event.

I would like to recount a bit of how it went for us (the curly and me).

 Well, it started off with awful weather. It changed between rain, snow, icy rain, sunshine every two minutes and thus it was impossible to ride as there's no indoor riding ring, just outdoor.
The second week however really rocked. I managed to ride 1 1/2 hours on average a day and I must admit I've never ridden this much in a week before. My horse was started under saddle gently last summer and though I rode her more or less regularly, never as much as this month, especially the second week. I also used to do a lot of groundwork, but this event changed it all! I started riding a lot, I rode almost every day, I even dragged myself to the stable after work despite being exhausted already just to get in another half an hour of riding. :) And it was a lot of fun!!! I found a good mixture of training and trail rides with a priority on training as we're still both in the learning process and need to work on getting better.

Anyway, to sum it up: the event got me really started on riding and enjoying it much more than before, despite the horse's spring issues (bucking, being generally uncooperate, being more interested in grass etc.). And I do hope that I can keep it up the coming month whenever the weather allows riding.

A big thank you to Denise for getting us all off our butts and onto the horses this early in the year and coming up with great ideas!

Friday, May 1, 2015

WINNER of the April Mini Derby!!

To keep our RAC team motivated, 30 day mini challenges are planned through out the year. For the month of April it was something new!

The APRIL MINI DERBY

The Goal & Mission of the Derby:

The RAC team had to keep track of  their time under saddle/driving and for each hour they rode/drove, they received 4 points. They had to post their points online within 7 days of each ride to qualify those points. To keep the riders motivated, the leader board (standing) was posted each morning to show placings to date.

The WINNER of this Derby was:  Cyndi Morin and her Curly Gelding Sunny!! CONGRATULATIONS CYNDI!!




Saturday, April 18, 2015

BLISS!!

WOW!! What a day! What a ride! I had planned on taking Linus down a nearby trail to an old quarry to continue working on water crossing. At the last minute, my good friend (whose horse is Linus' best friend!) said she was available for a ride and wanted to join me. We live closeby so met up on the side road between our farms and set off. I thought Bernie knew about the place we went to ride but she has only ever been on the trail part. A friend owns the rest of it and has really cleaned it up and made some great trails so we spent hours exploring! It was incredible.

Below is Bernie's horse Lucas. He's a bit older than Linus and is great emotional support in sticky situations! They're a great pair together because there are things Linus is better with and things Lucas is better with. So, between the two, there is nothing we cannot cross, pass or handle!




We first came to a flooded part of trail. I rode on this spot this past winter and was able to circle the quarry. So, to get where we wanted to go, Linus HAD to cross this flooded part. At this moment, it was the deepest, widest and longest stretch of water he had ever crossed. It blew me away that I did not have to do much encouraging to get him in the water.


Below is a shadow pic but it didn't turn out very well to show that it's a water shadow! Looks like it is just dirt! But, good that the water was that clear!


Lucas says "It's ok Linus, you got this!"


YES! He started splashing and blowing!!! The only thing he still is not sure about is when the winds pick up and the water starts rippling. We'll keep working on that.


Way to go my handsome boy!


The great part of riding with a friend is I get to be in some of the pics! 


Below is the first water of the day that we came to on our way to the quarry. Linus crossed once behind Lucas and then I had him go back through it on his own.


We trotted and cantered along some trails after our water playing. Then we came back this way too rather than taking the now very windy road back home. So on the way back we again played in the water, went back into the quarry which is about the size of a small lake. We are planning to go back when it is warmer out to swim the horses there!
From going to fighting over crossing a puddle to emerging in a lake...I am beyond thrilled with Linus. He stepped up his game in such a big way today and I could not be happier about it. We had a great day. Probably my best ride ever!
For those on Facebook, there are more pics there!

Donna & Linus
Lunenburg, ON

Friday, April 17, 2015

A Great Week!

Of all times to take it back to basics a bit, it happens during the RAC derby month. Oh well! I have spent more ground time lately with the horses than riding time. I think we all needed it and have benefited from it. But, I did get out last weekend on Linus, it was so gorgeous out! (maybe i should at least get those points logged!)
As I was riding down the road, I could hear his little fan club from our previous ride shouting "Linus is coming! Linus is coming!" Josh, the older of the two who were out, ran into the house for some apples and his younger brother, Roman, who had been playing on his scooter with his Dad came over. Linus actually checked out the scooter and then slobbered apple on it. 
So then I asked the little admirers if they would like to ride Linus. They were thrilled at the suggestion and each one had a turn. I walked them up and down the road a little ways. 


They got the biggest kick out of it. Their Mom took some pictures but I haven't seen them yet. I am hoping she will put hers on Facebook too. 


These guys have the most contagious laugh! They just love everything and it is hard not to laugh just because they are. The best was when they referred to his Ben D'Or spots as polka dots!  This is truly one of my favourite parts of horse ownership! Especially when people are scared of them, Linus is such a good match for those people because he is like an overgrown dog.


I continued on with my ride and Josh started coming up the road behind us on his little dirtbike. I wasn't sure how Linus would react but as young as he is, Josh was good to pass slow and Linus was totally fine with it. So Josh went up and down the road as we headed down it. Great training opportunity! Then another neighbour stopped his truck (in the middle of the road and shut it off! I love where we live!) because his daughter wanted to see the horse. So they got out and we chatted and she loved on Linus. They asked questions and learned a lot about horses and Curlies! I turned around not much further past this point because with all the visiting, I had been out for quite a while even though we didn't make it too far! Josh passed us one more time so I turned Linus around and we cantered after him! What a thrill that was and I think Linus enjoyed it too. 
We stopped at one more place on the way home. A lady who trains therapy dogs (usually labs for her) was out with one. Her newest dog had seen Linus when we chatted through the window of her SUV one day but she chose to bark this time and  her owner did not like that. They shouldn't be doing that as therapy dogs. So, they wanted me to stay and chat a bit so the dog could smell Linus and use it as a training opportunity. What a day for visits but it was great and Linus soaked up all of the attention!

Then today, I was going to go for a ride but just didn't really end up with enough time to make it a good one so I opted to continue on with the groundwork trend of late and took Linus for a walk. I was thinking of you Terrie as I went for another walk! I decided to take him to the corner of the road where it floods. Last year I spent about an hour with him here and ended up bribing him into the water and then staying in the water. This time, he walked right into it like he does it every day! He did not try to get out the other side or rush through.


It wasn't as deep as last year, but it was about halfway to his knee at the deepest. I was so thrilled with him and I didn't even have any treats with me!! I was wishing I had one for him but was even more thrilled that it didn't take any to get him in there!


Then it got even better!! He started playing in it!! Linus has NEVER played in water before. Many of you probably don't know but we have worked very hard with water. I just learned this year that his mother also has a terrible fear of water. Linus would not walk through puddles that you and I could cross with sneakers on! Our breakthrough was when I rode him about 40 minutes away to a flooded trail last Spring and backpacked my rubber boots. I changed into them when we got there and spent lots of time with him in the water. Coaxing him into it. I was gentle at first but then had to get a bit firm to show him we were not leaving til he was in it. So, he ended up trusting me enough to walk through knee deep water with me. Then I got back on and rode him through it too. My friends and I had been at this spot a while before this and we had to go around by the road because Linus wouldn't go through the water. We even tried ponying him through with his best bud Lucas. After that, I said never again will we be the cause of rerouting our ride! 


He splashed in it, blew in it and pulled long grass out too! I cannot tell you how happy it made me when he was playing in it! I think we are still a long way off from the beach again, but definitely a step in the right direction


Yahoo Linus! Splish, splash!! 

Thursday, April 16, 2015

So Much Excitement!


Kai settling in and figuring out the hay net

                    Oh The Excitement!

It's been such a busy couple of weeks here in VT.

Cynthia and I made a trip to a mustang adoption not expecting to find any Curlies (we were told there were none on the truck).  But...to our surprised we found at least two that appeared to be 1/2 or full Curlies and many that were at least part Curly.  I managed to bring home one little yearling that I fell in love with.

Kai at the auction







She has the kinky/wavy mane and tail, fetlocks, forelock, and lots of little wavy curls above her knees and hocks.  Her body coat is so matted together.  We are thinking that she is a straight coated Curly with lots of Curly characteristics.

So curious
Oh the Curly mustache


Finally a clear ring!
I'm looking forward to working with her and seeing how far she will go (any suggestions are helpful as this is my first horse under 3 years of age).

This is her "I can't believe you made me work" face




























As to Honey....she's been working more now that we have some nice weather.  And the ring is finally clear! :) Yay.  So it's time to get her and I in shape again which will be fun.  Still dealing with large amounts of mud here, some ice, and some remaining snow.  

The April mini event is really taking off here at the barn.  I've been working more and more with Magick (Honey's son) which has been fun and challenging.

~Honey & Bethany

Monday, April 13, 2015

"Today my human friend and owner wanted me to go slow, I said no, we go fast.. weee!
Yesterday I was enjoying my breakfast... and there she was.. with halter in her hand!!!
I tried to tell her I wanted to finish my breakfast first, but she wouldn't listen so I poo'd in my bucket!
Later that day I decided we needed to go fast, the faster I gallop the sooner I can get lunch musli? yes?!
After she rode me, she cleaned my bedroom, very nicely. Maybe this isn't such a bad deal anyway!" *horselaughter*

Well, the past week was just great (after a long time of being sick, then way too much work and the horse being quite uncooperative, and then bad weather (storm and rain)). I had lots of time for the horse and riding and finally felt like making some progress with training her. After hard schooling work and lessons, I always sneaked in a short relaxing trail ride so that she could see something different and we (the horse and I) enjoyed the rides.
Unfortunately, I have to work way too much this week for extensive riding, but I do hope the sneak in a ride here and there. (And a lot more posting here! Hopefully!)


Sunday, April 12, 2015

A great riding week!

Sunny and I had a great riding week!  With my husband on holidays, I was able to get in some nice riding during the week plus, awesome weekend rides with my friend.

My daughter and I like to walk the dogs each morning on horse back.  But it's been too cold this winter for my just turned 4 year old daughter to ride so we have just started back.  I ride my Curly and she rides my Arabian.  I have her on a pony rope and she has a voltige girth with handles.  It's been very nice to have her back out with me!

Out for our dog walks.


My friend and I rode to our local village :-)



Manhole covers were an issue... had to take some time to help the horses get braver :-)



Our ride today.  Out in our local forest with some friends from up the road.  Lovely weather here finally!  


Having a blast here in Eastern Ontario Canada with my Curly!

Cyndi & Sunny

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