Sunday, September 22, 2019

sunday feel goods

Whew, happy weekend everyone. Hope it's been relaxing and fun!! I figured I'd take this chance to scroll through my recent pictures for all those sweet nice sorta in-between moments that have been happening in Charlieland lately.

the window into charlie's subterranean bank barn stall makes it perfect for introducing tiny kiddos to the big pony
I already mentioned I withdrew from Jenny Camp last month after the dressage, since I just wasn't feeling it for jumping. A friend was coming to watch with her young son, so we decided to just play ponies instead.

Which worked out well bc it was hot as blazes and I don't think the 5yo would have tolerated standing out in the oppressive midday sun while I stressed my way through the jumping phases lol.

so then said kiddos feel brave enough to pop up for a sit!!
Since I wasn't jumping tho, we got to hang around in the cooler barns introducing little R to all the horses! And obviously he wanted to climb aboard one of them too ;)

talk about a tall pony ride!!
Guys, Charlie is such a saint haha. He LOVES children - is honestly like a heat seeking missile whenever he sees the tiny little humans. It's adorable. Well, let's be real, it's adorable bc he's a horse. If he had a mustache and drove a van, you'd probably call the cops LOL. But he IS a horse, so it IS very cute.

charlie was concentrating so hard on his kiddo, he takes this job very seriously <3
The pony ride didn't really advance more than a step or two beyond the mounting block bc it is a pretty high seat up there lol, and the kid got a little nervous when Charlie shifted his weight to cock a hind leg. Still tho. So cute, omg. 

he's obsessed with ponies and kiddos
Sometimes I seriously believe Charlie was born into the wrong body haha. Like, he would LOVE to be a camp pony, having kids climbing all over him, body painting him and ooh-ing and ahh-ing over his mane and tail. Bc let's be real, this is Charlie's world and we're all just put here to entertain and adore him, right?? Lol.... <3

this is why we can't have nice things
Anyway. We've been checking off other fun little boxes lately. Like my beloved One-K defender turned 5 this year so I somewhat begrudgingly replaced it, taking advantage of the #mindyourmelon helmet awareness weekend sales recently. This time I opted for the matte finish instead of the suede, with the hope that it won't get to musty dusty looking.

what happens when you go careening through the woods spiderwebs 
Tho... uh, within like its first few rides I already messed up that "brand new" finish haha. Not even sure how I managed to get the spiderwebs from a recent trail ride to transfer to perfectly to the helmet. Maybe it's my secret superpower? Anyway, it looks like it should wipe off pretty easily but still.... womp womp lol.

charlie likes to stop to smell the flowers while i set our cavaletti exercises lol
Charlie, for his part, has been doing well. In my schooling rides lately I've been trying to do more ground pole and cavaletti work. For the last 3ish weeks I've had at least one ride per week where we set up loonnnngggg lines of trot and canter poles.

These exercises are so useful for Charlie bc he understands the poles well, and can tell if he got through them nicely or poorly without me needing to translate. So he tends to turn on his own engine and click into gear with way less nagging from me.

ground pole exercise from L Williams! blue = lines for trot AND canter, green = lines for just trot
Another bonus is that it's proving to be really useful to set the lines on diagonals or shorter turns, since it forces us to address our straightness issues.

Most recently, I set up a variation of something L Williams recently posted. It called for 10' poles so I had to overlap the edges of these 12' poles a little bit, but actually the distances still worked out just fine. Tho it meant I didn't take advantage of all the available lines.

And actually, it turned out that I placed the thing in a very poor location considering almost all of the most interesting approaches were blocked by other jumps set up in the arena. So it wasn't as versatile as I'd hoped. But was a good exercise!

where did the water go???
Mostly tho we've just kinda been chipping away at things. There's still a backlog of lessons I need to write about lol (like our latest Hilltop dressage lesson!) plus a few more coming up on the schedule. Charlie's still not feeling as keen as I'd like in the jumping tho.

Actually, part of me is starting to wonder if it's partly due to the cumulative effect of just how hard and dry the ground has been for months now. It's hard to tell, bc he's not lame in any obvious sort of way, but then again he's a big heavy horse to be pounding the ground all the time. So it's possible.

For now, tho, I'm not worrying about it (tho rain would be appreciated LOL) and instead am sorta shifting gears and expectations. We'll just cruise through the end of summer and hopefully regroup for a couple fun fall outings.

Or. Ya know. Maybe we'll just do pony rides and trail gallops instead haha. Sounds good to me, right? What about y'all, been up to anything fun and relaxing lately?


17 comments:

  1. It's been super-dry here, too, and the ground is rock-hard. Also, our fields are getting sewage sludge fertilizer and will be all ick for a while -- it's road work for the foreseeable future over here.

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    1. ugh yea it's amazing to me that the foreseeable future still doesn't include any rain either. i hope it doesn't keep going like this for long... :(

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  2. We need rain so bad. Can’t remember the last rain we had and everything is hard and crunchy.

    In the Charlie smelling roses photo - are your reins threaded through the stirrup iron? Is this how you keep them from falling down and getting stepped on? If so you are a genius! I hate letting a Eeyore loose while I set up poles and such because he drops his head and then I’m running over to make sure he doesn’t snap his reins or get caught and break a leg.

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    1. so the reins aren't threaded through the stirrup iron, tho it kinda looks like that in the pic. actually tho i put the reins up on the pommel of the saddle, and pulled a stirrup through the rein. so it's not a hard tie, as you can see by how much it all shifted after charlie wandered over to the flowers. there are better ways to tie up the reins tho, mostly if you just tie them up around the horse's head instead of trying to thread down the neck. i can send some picks if i remember next time i'm at the barn!

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  3. We need some rain here too, and we are just coming out of winter! We have also just been taking it easy. Sometimes you just gotta

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    1. sometimes "easy" is exactly what the doctor ordered! but, also, rain please. we'd love some rain!

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  4. omg - I have to walk everywhere with my mouth shut or I inhale a bug or walk through a line of spiderweb! Like, everywhere!

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    1. i mean i appreciate that the spiders are eating all the other nasty bugs but ick these webs are everywhere!

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  5. I have a variant of your exercise, simply adding two more poles to make a third triangle on the end of yours, which is hated and dreaded by all riding school kiddos lol. I call it The Fish, and it is torture!

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    1. ha nice!! i can see how adding those two more poles could create even more options. still tho, next time i set up poles i'll probably skip trying to be so clever with design and just go straight to tried 'n true trot and canter poles

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  6. I cannot believe how dry it is, when last year it would not stop raining for love of god or money. I wish we could even things out a little bit...

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    1. for real tho. as far as i can tell, this dry is basically as bad as last year's wet.... it's exhausting. we had a fun day at the farm yesterday where i ended up parked next to the arena for hours. by the end of the day, the dusty gritty fact was so intense that my skin was literally stinging from being so dry... bleh!

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  7. The spiderweb helmet is amazing! lol
    Sorry it's so dry there! It's always dry here, but we've had a nicer than usual summer, so I'll take it!

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    1. oh man, the spiderweb looks cool but i'm gonna be suuuuuper irritated if it doesn't clean off LOL

      and yea the dry is definitely normal in some parts of the world, but not really here. and i wonder if we have different soil type constitutions bc when the ground here gets dry, it becomes rock hard and really unpleasant for jumping or galloping. even the arenas can get bad unless they have some sort of rubber or fiber footing...

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  8. I had a hard time picking a spot to set up the poles too, damn jumps always getting in the way. The new helmet looks great!

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    1. yea i guess i didn't really think through it all that well, bc i really did put it in like, EXACTLY the wrong spot haha. maybe next time i'll do better?? lol...

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  9. That tiny child on your giant pony is the cutest!

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