So for my handful of followers, you may recall that I had planned on a schooling show two weeks ago with Ruby, but unfortunately it was rained out. Lucky for me, the rain date wasn't while I was in Vegas. Unluckily for me, it was the Saturday after I got back, limiting my time to prep (since Ruby had the entire week I was in Vegas off, oops). Despite my sleep-deprived fog on Monday, I was able to get out to the barn and ride. Ruby was fairly chill, giving me some nice steady trot work and wonderful walk work, with only a handful of exuberant canter departs (I mean, she's only five, even if I sometimes forget since she never acts like a baby!). Since the show will be outside in a grass ring, I also took her out to the hay field after our arena work and made sure I had adequate brakes at higher speeds on less ideal terrain. She was a little snotty a few times, but I think there was something in the air Monday -- other horses at the barn were acting a little silly as well. And also -- a week off!
|More Vegas photos, because I can -- sporting my awesome new belt, and shooting pics with the preciousssssss.....
|Me and Kate on Saturday night <3
Tuesday I just tossed her on the lunge line in a halter and let her mostly stretch her legs -- I could say it's because I wanted to ease her back in to work slowly instead of just riding every day and exhausting her, but I'd be lying, because mostly it was because I was exhausted.... haha). We also revisited TotF, and she was super. She's finally figuring out that she needs to wait for the aid (instead of just moving when she thinks I might possibly be getting ready to ask), and she's really learning to keep the front foot planted.
By Wednesday I was finally starting to feel slightly more human (after two solid nights of eight hours of sleep -- which is unheard of for this insomniac!). After I got home from work, I made a quick check of my trailer to make sure everything was still packed for the show (it was, although I added a new belt and a different pair of reins). I also took Cinna on a walk through the woods trail (working toward those goals!). Wednesday we had a bit of a temperature drop and it was quite windy, and about 2 minutes into our walk I was kind of regretting it. She was being spooky and generally a bit of an asshole (baby brain). Luckily I was armed with her normal trail walking attire (regular lead and additional chain lead) plus a pocketful of cookies. We worked on walking (preferably not on top of me), as well as patient standing (not at all her forte). We passed many terrifying horse-eating obstacles (including a trash can, cardboard box, and several stumps), and also walked partway down my gravel road. About halfway out on the trail she settled down a little -- well, it's her version of settled. She's never going to be as chill as Ruby, it's just not in her nature, so I am going to have to make a concerted effort to not compare them to each other. Cinna is always going to be "hotter", that's just how she's wired. At any rate, we made it through the ENTIRE trail loop, and even stopped to just stand or graze a few times. I also made her eat cookies off all the scary objects, which had the unintended consequence of her deciding that every tree stump must dispense cookies and dragging me over to check them (even after I ran out of cookies).... At least she wasn't scared anymore? haha.
After I put Cinna away and fed the dogs, I headed out to ride Ruby. She was foot perfect -- I didn't want to run through either of the tests, but I did work most of the elements (stretchy trot, canter-trot transition on the diagonal, etc). She gave me some really, really super stretchy trot, and lots of other pleasant work. I'm hoping that even though our prep time wasn't adequate, we'll still acquit ourselves respectably at the show. Because some people can't make the rain date (sob, Kaity), ride times changed a little. My ride times are now both between 1 and 2, which is a little preferable to how they were originally set up (like 1 and then 3 or something like that?).
Thursday I got home from work and decided to squeeze in a lunging session with Cinna. She was an absolute rock star -- like I hadn't just ignored her for two weeks, haha. I don't deserve these horses! After I lunged her, I decided to work on having her stand still for mounting. I used the cookie method again, and she didn't even think about walking off. She was being really good so I was hacking her around the arena bareback (helmet-less in jeans over my lunging surcingle, no less), and she had a scoot across the arena when the cat raced by.... luckily for all of us, she is a good egg, and didn't dump me in the sand. I do have rather entertaining video footage of it, so maybe one of y'all blogging geniuses can teach me how to make it into a funny little GIF so everyone else can laugh too!
Then I headed out to work Ruby lightly -- she's been doing well with the work day, lunge day routine since I got back from Vegas, so after I clipped her up pretty for the show, I just let her play on the line for a bit. Then home to bed early (DH had training yesterday and today, so alarm is going off wayyyyy earlier than I want) and tonight will be one last ride and bath before the show tomorrow!