Saturday, January 12, 2013

Bad Blog / Good Blog!

I have tried all my tricks to add photos to this blog and it is still NO GO.  So, go to the new, new YaYa blog located on WordPress at the following link:  yayariders on WordPress
Good Horse - BAD Horse is the post I was working on so go check it out. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy 2013 and 20 Reasons to Ride

New Year's Day dawned cold and dreary.  I tried to hold on to the dream.... The New Year's Trail Ride tradition is hard to let go.   The temperature was below freezing rather than almost 40.  The fog was thick and freezing on bridges.  A few snow flakes were flying.  Freezing rain predicted......  The better part of valor meant that we drove cars rather than rigs to the Walkerosa, skipped riding and moved straight to eating/drinking/talking.
Pretty satisfying to talk horses if you can't ride horses.  So, we did.  Western Dressage.  Pri Caprilli.  Bend and track on the turns.  New Saddles.  Old Saddles.  Horse soundness and not.  Navajo.  Pico.  Lika.  Lynn's mare.  Willy.  Sunny.  Scooter.  The afternoon was over in a flash and we left just before dusk since the dirt road was a bit slimy.  The next chance for trail riding might be for a Ground Hog Day or a Search for Evidence of Spring ride.... YaYa!

The girls received a "water box" for Christmas and Ivy is already working Sister in anticipation of riding her in Western classes in 2013.  Pico is still off so we will likely make another vet trip soon; Ivy may be reduced to riding Splash for English since Alaina wants to ride Sister in English and Jumping.  Life can be sooooo complicated.
Now, for those 20 Reasons to Ride
  1. Riding with great friends
  2. Elegant tack
  3. Cute boots
  4. Any excuse for bling
  5. Keeps the dirty Santa in circulation
  6. Euphoria that comes from controlling (or trying to control) you own personal 1/2 ton animal
  7. Equine therapy
  8. The best (perhaps not fastest) way to get from A to B
  9. More photos of you and your horse
  10. Interesting training strategies
  11. The challenge of mounting without a mounting block
  12. You can go anywhere and get nowhere
  13. Its fun to plan show strategy
  14. You get to pat a pony
  15. Getting lost just makes the ride longer
  16. Re-living the ride with friends Apr├Ęs-Ride
  17. Non-polluting... or at least biodegradable
  18. Post ride wine
  19. Priceless if not inexpensive
  20. Feeling the wind in your hair or through the helmet vents

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Its Almost Christmas!

The whirlwind of the holiday season is in full force but the temperatures have been in the 50's this weekend so Splash got worked two days in a row.  Much colder temperatures and maybe SNOW are  forecast for Christmas Day, so I plan to ride again tomorrow.

Since Pico was a little off last week, we left him home and Ivy took Sister to the party lesson and Alaina took Sunny.  The 007 girls, Sheila and Allison, joined the lesson with Nancy and me.  We did some lateral work and then practiced trail obstacles before we finished with a few roll-backs.  We missed Mallory and Roxy who were looking at draft horses in Antlers.

Ivy and I took the Sunday afternoon ride on Pico and Splash after Ivy worked Sister in the round pen.  Pico was moving ok with only an occasional tiny head bob.   Ivy is looking forward to showing Sister in ground classes and western next year.  Alaina plans on showing English including jumping on her.  Hope that works out with the 4-H rules.

It's official, the New Year's trail ride will be at the Walkerosa on New Year's Day - ride at 2pm and pot luck at 4pm.  Hope for good weather and that YaYa Sisters can start the new year off right.


Monday, December 17, 2012

Birthday Girls and ODS/GCC Christmas

The party lesson was on on Saturday and we brought Sister for Alaina and Ivy was working on Pico in order to build up his strength after all his time off.  Alas, he is a little bit off again so Ivy rode Missy in the lesson.  Splash was recovered enough from his shark bites for riding, so we worked on the usual exercises.  Fun lesson followed by Lunch at Graham's including birthday cake for the twins - thanks to the sweet Dilldine girls.

The Annual Christmas Party and Awards Banquet was held on Saturday night at the Eaton Farm in Inola.  Alaina stayed home to hang with Kale but Ivy came with me since she loves to play Dirty Santa (she claims she wasn't raised that way).  Ivy and Alaina had soundness problems with Pico and Sunny so didn't qualify for year-end awards.  But Ivy won the Multi-club Award and Splash and I were Vintage Training Amateurs.  Woo Hoo.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Jaws and Dirty Santa

Just when you thought it was safe to get in the trailer.......  Sunny the Shark got the slot next to Splash.  Bad Sunny, Evil Sunny.....

Mallory and I played with the ponies a bit on Friday followed by lunch at Ron's with Spanish Fries.  We met at the farm where Mallory worked Trooper a bit and I did some Western neck reining practice with Splash.  We we cantering on a long rein through a tight corner when Splash tripped, almost went down and I lost a stirrup, Goosed my mount who bucked in protest and stopped.  I didn't fall off and we continued our ride.  No injury to horse (hopefully) or rider.  Whew.

After weeks of conflicting activities, the party lesson was on - sortof.  Mallory and Kathy were not available and Nancy was waiting to try a new horse.  On the way to Patty's, the truck was lurching badly all the way down 88 and I was worried about a horse down in the trailer or an engine problem.  Neither.  Sunny the Shark was busy biting Splash all the way.  Splash was stressed and sweaty and bloody.  Sunny had red lips.  Splash's injuries included broken skin as well as serious swelling in several areas so no saddle or riding possible.  Darn!  I used the water hose to clean the wounds and cool the swelling and doctored with nitrofurazone.  Sunny will ride in the front slot from now on.

Pico and Sunny got light work during their lessons.  Pico appears to be sound so we will be working him as well as Sunny back into shape. 

Then I saddled up Zoe for a lesson.  She was a little off so we worked on trail obstacles.  Zoe knows what to do, so doesn't wait for direction.  Mary played around on Beau so equine therapy was administered.

Sunday evening, at long last, the YaYa's had their annual Dirty Santa Party.  Delicious food, a little wine, and great friends - oh, and the Dirty Santa made his annual appearance.  I am voting for some sort of dirty Santa party more than once a year.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

December Cold Snap - NOT

December got off to a fun start with the 4-H Horse Club year-end banquet on the First - that meant mighty preparations the night before doing setup and BBQ lunch (from Dink's in B'Ville), awards, silent/live auctions for the scholarship fund, and the famous wooden nickle auction for the kids.  Alaina spent whatever it took to get the Dawn DiAmaco lesson (what a good girl) but Ivy couldn't face off the 2 little girls vying for the Patty Couch lesson since they were so intensely competing for the honors and she just can't take away the desires of smaller kids.  Alaina managed to get a 4-H Halter and some number magnets as well while Ivy snagged number magnets, a muck bucket, neon green goodies, and a surprise bucket with a Stillwater Milling gift card.  Both girls won year-end buckles for Grand and Reserve classes, Alaina's first championship buckle.  Fun.  Next up?  Quiz Bowl!

The high on Sunday DEC. 2 was 72 degrees with light winds.  Sunny and lovely.  The original plan was to ride at Walnut Creek on Keystone with my friend Amy but since it was the last day of gun/deer season, we opted for Claremore Lake Park instead.  It was Sister's first public trail outing and she did pretty well on the trail (after a bit of crow-hopping and kick-outs during some canter warm up).  To add to the experience, the Santa Toys-For-Tots Runners (complete with Tutu's and Santa Suits) shared the park.  Splash was a good boy although a bit worried about a pair of mules and some horses charging around at the Rodeo Grounds across the fence.  Mallory and Roxy were with us and their mounts were good too.   A lovely way to start December!  Yaya!


Monday, November 26, 2012

The Pico Question

At long last we had a party lesson at the Rocking C - alas, without Nancy E, Kathy B, or Mary B.  Before we got started, Spanky and Daisy escaped the yard and ran straight to 412 with Patty and me in hot pursuit.  I am happy to say that no dogs were hurt on the highway but Patty and I had twin heart-attacks.  Whew.

So the girls had their lesson - Alaina and Ivy on their normal mounts for the first time in months.  Sunny was moving well and seemed to remember most of his training - the canter was a bit fast but he was good with the trail obstacles.  Pico was going sound but didn't look as fluid to the left.  They took things very lightly during the lesson and Patty suggests bringing him back into work very slowly.  Either Pico is on the mend and we can bring him back into work or very shortly, we might discover that he still has a problem.  Cross fingers that he is going to be sound.
Mallory / Mario and me / Splash worked in the outdoor arena because the sun was shining and the winds were light.  Splash and I worked on more impulsion for the trot.  Patty had me work on leaning a bit forward and increasing my tempo.  Hard work, but we made progress with extention along the long sides and collection on the shorts.  Before our lesson, I practiced cat yoga stretches with the help of Boots who jumped on each knee in turn.  Its hard to balance with cats leaping in your lap.