Wednesday, April 29, 2015

3.42 miles today!

Increased distance today!

I've noticed with Gwyn that the first day back that I ride after a hiatus she is on her best behavior. We have no spooks, she listens, she doesn't fight me. I liken it to her going "You're back! Stay back please! I'm a good girl I swear I'll be good don't leave me again."

The second time I ride (today) it's like she suddenly goes "Oh, well,  you're coming more frequently so now I'm going to go back to my old shenanigans because I know you won't leave me again."

I didn't lunge today and instead started with about a mile of work in the arena. We did a lot of working off the seat and listening. I wanted to make sure I'd have control out in the field if I chose to go. She offered some good canter, which I was pretty happy with. It felt like there is some improvement there. I guess the little bit Beth was able to do with her, worked! I did raise my stirrups a hole from yesterday because I felt like I couldn't get my leg under me AND have my heels down. I felt much better today, especially in the canter.

We headed back out into the field and reversed the path from yesterday. Pretty much immediately I had a more 'alert' horse between my legs. Her trot was very forward heading away from the barn (we were also 'chasing' a cat) and as we came to the back of the field near a large irrigation ditch, we startled a bird out of the grass.

Gwyn jumped sideways and I came off. Thankfully, of all the places to fall, it didn't hurt and was rather cushy ground. Thank you hay field! Gwyn immediately stopped and started eating grass. Thank you again, hay field. I'd like to say she looked contrite, but that may be too much anthropomorphism.

There were some handy logs that I used to mount back up and we continued on. She continued to be much more tense. But no more spooks, thank goodness. We got some nice cantering in and I made an effort to trot more than yesterday. I need to increase my fitness in maintaining a posting trot if I want to do CTR and Endurance and now is the time to work on that. I'll also be adding in running to get in better shape cardio-wise. 

I decided to add a bit of length by going down the road. We only had one car drive by and they were very polite and didn't rush so it was a nice positive experience for Gwyn!

Neighboring fields

I tried to get a selfie of the two of us. It was less than successful, lol

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Back in the saddle! 2.4 miles!

Today was a GREAT day to be back in the saddle!

In her stall, waiting impatiently for breakfast.

Yay! Tacked up! (Almost)

Lunging to assess. It seems most of her wigglies were gotten out the day before. She was ready to focus today.

Some canter-ish. The indoor footing is deep, soft sand. 


Then up I went!

And out we went. It was SUCH a nice day out. Perfect for riding.

After riding briefly in both indoor and outdoor arenas, I decided I really just wanted to hack. 

So we did. The barn sits on 100 acres of hay field and we're allowed to ride around the edges.

It was great. The field had nice footing in most spots, there were still a few wet patches but nothing awful. We walked, trotted and cantered. I think Gwyn really enjoyed herself.

She was watching the redwing blackbirds.

We came around behind one of the horse pastures.

Small ravine with a creek

Maybe an old orchard?

Monday, April 27, 2015

Gwyn is HERE!

I got the heads up this morning as I finished submitting a job application. I rushed out because I still needed a money order to pay for the second half of the price of shipping. Getting that was more complicated than it should have been, but finally, with carrots as well, I was on the road to the barn and could see, just ahead, the truck pulling onto the property.

Getting her off was a non-issue, and in fact she got a glowing behavioral report from the shipper. He had been the one to pick her up in Snohomish a week prior as well, so he was with her for the whole transit. That's my girl!

I got her situated in her 'quarantine' pen with hay and water and hung out and snuggled, taking photos. Then it was time to pick Kaylee up from preschool so I headed that way, got lunch, and brought Kaylee back to the barn for more snuggles and brushing. 

A small rub mark, likely from friction during transport.

Dried blood on a straight scrape. Again, not concerned, it's extremely shallow and not even puffy. 

She immediately ate and drank, and pooped not long later (which made me sigh with relief)

Even horses blink.

Gwyn was next to the grey. She was hiding at first, or trying to look through the bars rather than stick her head through.

The shipping van. Packed full of horses too!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Gwyn's Arrival

I got the call today. Gwyn will be arriving tomorrow morning between 8 am and 12 pm. I'm so excited!!  I went to the barn today to make sure that she had a stall prepped for her and also to figure out where I could turn her out.

Understandably, given that there is an EHV-1 outbreak here in Michigan, my barn owner wants to do a short quarantine so she'll be turned out alone for a little bit. Her stall is across, but not next to, other horses.
Her leather halter with nameplate is waiting for her to arrive, just like it did in Washington.

Hay and water are ready to go.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

In transit

Gwyn got picked up Monday night at near midnight PST. She made it to Colorado yesterday and is in her layover until tomorrow when she finishes her final leg to Michigan.

I'm so excited to see my horse again. I can't wait to ride and groom her and snuggle and just breathe her in.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

4 more houses

The first one was the only good one. Favorite house remains favorite house, by far and away. The barn was even better than I had hoped and the outdoor riding ring is elevated so it drains nicely. In fact, despite there being standing water on other parts of the property, the ring looked dry. There are several pastures plus gravel runs out of each of the three stalls. Everything is fenced with electrobraid and it looks in good condition.

Friday, April 3, 2015