Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Back In The Saddle Again


"Mr. Blue"

It’s been a while but we’ve had lots of things going on around here and this is the first time I’ve had a chance to sit down and write something.  I’m happy to report I’ve got my motivation back and have been riding Blue when I can.  Nate’s abscess returned so Dusty had been babysitting him in the smaller paddock.  He’s better now so she will soon be on the roster to be ridden.  The weather has been nothing short of miserable with high temps, rain and unbelievable humidity.  I’m not a hot weather person and can’t wait for autumn.  I also don’t feel I’m being fair to the horses to ride them in this humid weather.  They’re just as miserable as the rest of us only they’ve got flies and mosquitoes to deal with.  They seem to like hanging out in the sheds with the ceiling fans.  Amazing how many horses you can squeeze into a shed when the biting machines drive them inside. It reminds me of the clown car at the circus only it’s the “clown shed” at the farm. 

Blue and I are still working on him softening his neck.  He’s so tense and uncooperative I can only describe his neck as a “bull” neck, if that makes sense to anyone other than me.  As I’ve said before I’m trying to start him over so he will be more comfortable and willing to work and most importantly enjoy his job.  He seems to understand what I want more often now. He’s tracking up and not tensing his neck as much.  We’re still working in large circles.  When he refuses and starts to pop his shoulder to the inside and angle his neck the opposite way of what I want I slowly turn him in that direction so I don’t throw him off balance with a quick maneuver.  With this tactic he doesn’t get to win because of an evasion on his part. Blue can be a bit of a bully and at times a clash of wills ensues. When this happens the main thing is for me to remain calm and focused and show him that it’s not a travesty of injustice to do what you’re asked.  There’s no heavy lifting involved and it’s a lot easier if you just go with the flow and don’t try to outsmart me things will turn out for the best.  Although, to be perfectly honest, he does outsmart me occasionally, then it’s up to me to realize when it has happened and help show him the error of his ways with a gentle guiding rein.

So that’s life around here for now.  Summer seems to bring out the laid back- not in a hurry sort of mentality.  Maybe my brain is melting but there’s not much to do but get through each day and hope for a breeze and cooler temperatures.  Did I mention I ‘m not much of a summer person?
 Until next time
Quote for Today
Correction does much for the horse, but encouragement does more.

32 comments:

  1. Enjoy your back-in-the-saddle time. I hope the weather cooperates and gives you some good riding hours. I've never been so aware of the weather and how it makes me feel, until I brought horses home. It makes a big difference. Love the clown shed. Smart ponies!

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    1. Just turning them out the other day had me in meltdown mode and looking for the nearest shower.

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  2. So glad to see you back! You have certainly been missed. Handsome "Blue" is lucky to your understanding guidance. I'd send you cool breezes if we had some. :-)

    Your quote is perfect for people, as well. Too often "correction" is taken as criticism. Then nothing is accomplished.

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    1. Thanks Marvel! I hear its very hot on your coast too. Stay cool.

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  3. I've been wondering what you have been up to. Kudos for getting in gear. I feel the same way about high temperatures and humidity,my horses agree.

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    1. This weather just seems to hot too soon doesn't it. Feels more like August to me.

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  4. Your horses are lucky to have ceiling fans! I agree that the really hot weather is hard on them. We don't have the humidity that you do though--thank goodness! Hope you get some cool days out your way!

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    1. Thanks Linda. I'm hoping this humidity will leave soon and we get some decent weather soon too.

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  5. Glad to hear you've been riding. Sounds like Mr. Smarty Pants Blue is keeping you on your toes. :D

    The bugs have been chewing on poor Val, even with serious fly gear. And it's been 80 - 90 percent humidity here for a while now. Keeping up with chores around the property is all I can do lately. Autumn will be here before we know it!

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    1. Hi CFS,

      Sounds like you have the same weather as we do. Autumn can't get here fast enough for me.

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  6. I hear ya about summer. We have been experiencing similar weather here and I am so looking forward to cooler temps and less humidity. Like beautiful Blue, Gem has a stiff neck also. I don't think his is from being tense, it's more of a flexibility issue with a dash of "I am giving you the business". :-) Circles are great stretching exercises and your calm approach with Blue is just the ticket. Hope you get some relief weather-wise!

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  7. Hi Wolfie,
    I can't believe your wonderful boy Gem would even consider "giving you the business" (ha). But circles are great for helping with flexibility. Hope your weather gets better too.

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  8. I am impressed beyond words that you are getting in the saddle in July. I haven't been since before Salina left us and I know on some level I am needing to wait b/c it will be another one of those "firsts" since she's gone. Between heat, bugs, and torrential rain this summer is not being very conducive to riding. I decided in May that I would not push myself until fall - when the need to push will disappear anyway! Until then I'll ride vicariously through you and Blue. :)

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    1. Hi billie,

      You'll know when the time is right. I'm not pushing myself or the horses either. If I can get on first thing in the morning that's great if not then I don't. I don't ride for more than 20 minutes or so anyway. The air is so moist it's like breathing under water sometimes.

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  9. Good to know you are back in the saddle! This weather is brutal. I was just saying that I can't wait for autumn too. I've been getting up at 6 am just to muck before it gets too unbearably hot.

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    1. I know what you mean about getting done early. The other day I mucked at 7 after turning them out. It was still hot but not as bad as later in the day. Stay cool.

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  10. Hi, nice to hear you're back in the saddle. I've been going through the doldrums myself, between visitors and car issues (one car between four people...) I haven't managed to get up to the boys for the last week... hoping to get back into a routine now that visitor time is over.
    Hope Nate's abscess is 100% gone... bet Dusty can't wait to get back to work ;-)

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    1. It's so hard to find time to ride sometimes isn't it. There always seems to be something getting in the way. Nate's abscess is cleared up and Dusty couldn't care less about getting back to work. Or at least I think she doesn't...

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  11. Hate this weather. I have no indoor, so it's outside for me. The bugs and heat are bad enough, but the humidity kills it. I can't work the Boys in this. Motivation is not too much of a problem as far as "wanting" to ride, but being able to do so....no.

    Good work with Blue. I would think as he learns to soften, he will ultimately find if more comfortable and being to like going correctly. His clever brain and "little bit of bully" are bringing out the best riding in you. Horses like him require tact and lots of thinking on a rider's/trainer's part. *S*

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  12. Hi Jean,
    Thanks for the encouragement. Blue is a challenge, then again all my horses have been with one exception.

    The indoor is no better with the heat or bugs just a little more shady overhead. I can't ride or work with them in this heat and humidity either. I'm sure they would be thrilled with tack and a rider. So I'll give all of us a break. Heard it might get better by Sunday.

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  13. Glad to hear you're back in the saddle again, though it doesn't sound at all comfortable in that heat & humidity. Two thumbs way up for you, for not letting the weather stop you getting out and getting things done ... though I'm sure Blue wouldn't mind if you did take the easy way out ;o)
    Hope Nate's abscess clears up 100%; has Dusty been enjoying her babysitting duties or is she raring to go & show Blue how its really done?
    Hope you & the herd get some relief from the weather soon. We're finally getting something like summer temperatures here but I'm quite happy to stay in the shade :D

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    1. Hi Joy,

      Unfortunately, this week nobody is raring to go. It's so miserable here I have to give them a break...me too;)

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  14. I have been trying to adjust my "heat attitude" to survive the high temperatures and humidity and admire you for riding at all. I keep reminding myself that at least we don't have to chip the sun off the windshield before driving to work each morning, nor do we have to shovel it off the driveway or use a "sun-blower" (though maybe someone should invent one).
    Smart herd to hunker under the big fans to blow the ubiquitous insects away--they have prospered along with the weeds.
    Take it easy and mark another day off the calendar to be closer to cool.

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    1. Hi Diane,
      Thinking one day closer to autumn sounds like a nice way to wake up each day.

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  15. see? you're back in the saddle.
    I am with you - can't stand the heat! I can't wait for winter!!!!!
    - The Equestrian Vagabond

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    1. It's always better once you're actually riding but this heat and humidity won't let up. I can't stand the heat and bugs and neither can the horses. Hoping for some cooer weather.

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  16. Hmmm, I never thought of just changing directions to deal with the evasion you describe. What a great idea! Hope your work with Blue continues to go well. He's a handsome boy.

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    1. Hi Carol,

      Thanks, Blue is a handsome guy and the master of evasions. I tried to figure out something to beat him at his own game. This tactic seems to work well.

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  17. Always have motivation ! You won't regret :) Good luck with Mr.Blue and I invite you to me :) horsesforallmylife.blogspot.com

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  18. I AM a summer person and I can't take it.

    Of course I'm full of motivation now that I have a broken back.

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