Sunday, June 27, 2010

Letters from home

Dear Mom,

How is school? How are your roommates? Are you studying hard?

I'm having fun out in the pasture at gramma and grampa's house. They still have the old red mare, and she still gets too tired to run around as long as I want to, and she still squeals like and elephant to say hi. They still have the dumb brown fur thing that goes crazy with the barking and runs the fence line incessantly. I some times go poke my nose at it when it settles down to see if it has enough energy to start again, yep! It start back up with the obsessive running up and down the drive way. Its been fun.

But I do have to say that I don't like grampa ANYMORE! He was always my favorite because he'd bring interesting things out to the pasture. He seemed to thing they were parts and tools for fixing fences and stuff, but they were so much fun to pick up and carry away that I think they must have been horsie toys! Plus he'd dangle them off his belt, or leave them sticking out of his pocket then turn his back to me. I think he was offering them to me to take! I really do! But then he'd always chase me down and take them back! Not fair! Anyway, I used to love him coming out to scratch me, but now... I just don't know...

So here's what happened. You remember we took the drive to the stinky place where the lady always pokes me with needles and sends me off to la-la land for a while and this time she took the scratchy itchy thing out from behind my eye ball? Yeah, that was kind of a relief. But THEN grampa kept coming out 3 to 4 times a day to squirt gooey stuff onto the inside of my eye lid! I was NOT a fan! I hope its all over with now. My eye feels better! It really does! Then the lady from the stinky place came out to look at it again, and I didn't even get the dose of la-la land. I hope she told grampa to stop torturing me with eye goop.

I don't know if I'll ever get over this... grampa was always so much fun before... Oh look, here he comes with dinner! I like dinner! I wonder if he'll give me some scratches... I like when he gives me scratches... Gotta go!

Love and horse kisses,


Monday, June 14, 2010

This is Bear here…

Hey guys…

This is Bear here… everyone else’s mom seems to let them take over the blog once in a while, so I told my mom it was about time that I got to say something! So with my 30 seconds of fame… while I’m standing here on my soap box… now that I’ve got a captive audience… here’s what I have to say to y’all… you gotta help me!!

My foster sis Lola… she’s GOT TO GO! I thought it was a great idea at first. I mean I totally have a thing for red mares you know. Plus she pretty much just follows me around and she’ll do whatever I tell her! It’s been totally fun.

But NOW I hear that she gets to go on some fun vacation to the beach instead of me?!?!?!? That’s just not right… her time is up. Don’t get me wrong, I like the kid and all, but seriously, stealing my vacation? Mom keeps telling me that I wouldn’t like the LONG trailer ride down there. I don’t know what she’s talking about, I LOVE trailer rides! I get to rock out back there creating all sorts of good drum beats on the floor, on the walls, on the divider, even the top when I stretch up and reach it! It’s a blast! I try to entertain her when we stop at traffic lights with the new rhythm I made up. I don’t know why she doesn’t tell me how good a drummer I am… I rock!

So anyway, while Lola gets to go to have the cool ocean breezes all day long, and long gallops on the beach, I have to roast in the NorCal sun. Hmmfff… So here’s my plan, I will take it upon myself to find her a new home! Now it has to be a good one, hear? I do really like the girl, and I want the best for her. Plus I’d really like to be able to see her at some of the shows next year… you know say a friendly hello… catch up on how our winters went… kick her plain red butt in a friendly competition! He he he…

Yep, let’s send her off… I’ll take carrots, oats, apples, and pretty much anything else you want to offer that I can either eat or pick up with my teethies and toss around my pen! My mom might think she’s getting money for my sis, but I know all that is going straight into feed and goodies and giving me new things to destroy.

Well that's all I've got for now... I think its about time for me to kick my bucket around for a bit.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Pretty much everything revolves around Lola... hope he's not getting a complex

So Lola is for sale, which means I don't feel like I can even skip a day of her schedule. So again, all the action is on her blog. Check it out though! And if any of you know of anyone who wants a fun little eventing prospect, she'll be a blast! I just want to make sure its the right home! I'll even make this easy...

Plus there is an awesome little incident with Bear from last weekend's post... craziest thing I've ever had happen to me on the trail! EVER! If I've been riding since 4... that makes just about 24 years of riding trails, most of those being in northern California, and I've NEVER had this happen to me!

Now you're curious, huh? Go look! But then come back and read more about Bear...

So we had a really good ride tonight. He's so SO different from Lola. Body-wise he's much narrower, so its different to sit on him. He's not that much taller, but he sure feels it. He carries himself very differently, and he'll have a whole different set of challenges to learn to really be on the bit. Although he's greener than her in some ways, he's got a personality (and we have a longer relationship) that makes him very easy to just pick him up once a week and still feel like we're getting somewhere. He's physically less mature than her, but he's so naturally athletic that in some ways they're even, in someways he's better, and in someways he's never going to be a long hard journey to be as good as her. Its been a fun experiment to ride the two of them back to back on my lesson days. I try to apply the same lesson on him, only to find that it doesn't really apply! Its either too advanced because I need to introduce steps 1, 2, and 3 first, or its focusing on something that is not a weakness of his, so I don't need to use the creative steps to get to the goal. Its funny. It does give me the chance to put to action the equitation corrections that I've been hearing for the previous hour, and THAT always helps our ride. It gives me a lesson plan to work with so I don't go crazy trying to do too much in one ride. Its been fun.

He's been a blast on the trail lately. We've been going just about once a week, so he's getting slowly put back into shape. He didn't even break a sweat tonight, and I gave him a pretty solid 40 minute ride, so its not like he's outrageously out of shape. But I always think its important to start the conditioning at the walk. So he's been getting nice long walks on the trail. We've got some really good ups and downs to build muscle, and lots of steps and rocks to teach him to be careful and think about where he's putting his feet. Last Saturday we added in some trot and canter to our ride too. He's so happy and relaxed about all of it, its great. He was pretty tired by the end of a 2 hour ride though!

So that the fun we've been up to. I've got high hopes for him next fall! It will be a lot of fun to focus just on him again. He's come a long ways this spring, and he did it without consistent time under saddle. I really think that giving him the spring off was actually a good thing, not intentional, but good none the less. He's come back into work a much more balanced and steady horse than he was last fall. Its amazing what physical maturity can do for a four year old! I'm ok with the time he had off of training because now that I'm starting to push him, he's much more capable to step up to the plate.

The sad thing is that he had just lost so much weight at the last place. He's starting to look a little better, but its been a month already, and he's still got a little bit of ribs showing. I keep telling myself that once he's back up to weight, it will be easier to maintain, and that its just the process of getting him there that makes it feel like he's eating twice as much as the rest of the horses. I think the problem is that Lola eats twice as fast as him and so he gets less food. Starting last week he's getting his supplements separately, so I think just that will make a visible difference. They get three hay meals a day (plus I feed the "sloppy" mix when I'm out there), so I can't ask for much more!

The summer plan for him is 6 weeks of pasture vacation with the old mare. He'll get grass all day, plus hay morning and night in a separate pen where he can take his precious time eating! He's such a silly boy, I can't figure out if he just likes to savor his food, or if he gets too easily distracted. I can give the two horses the same amount of their "sloppy" in two separate tubs and watch Lola finish before Bear makes the halfway point. Crazy. He will have spread it twice as far as Lola though! If he were human, he'd be the kid that painted the dining room table with his spaghetti sauce instead of eating. I love my silly boy.

I feel good that he'll be fat and happy when I get back. I feel really confident now that I can pick up lessons with him in August and have him ready to hit a couple shows before the winter weather hits. That is if I'm back to one horse by then.... I can only hope. I'm exhausted just thinking about still having two horses this fall!