Monday, December 27, 2010

I COULD GIVE ALL TO TIME



To Time it never seems that he is brave
To set himself against the peaks of snow
To lay them level with the running wave,
Nor is he overjoyed when they lie low,


But only grave, contemplative and grave.


What now is inland be ocean isle,
Then eddies playing round a sunken reef
Like the curl at the corner of a smile;
And I could share Time's lack of joy or grief
At such a planetary change of style.


I could give all to Time except---except
What I myself have held.


 But why declare
The things forbidden that while the Customs slept



I have crossed to Safety with? For I am There,
And what I would not part with I have kept.



 Robert Frost~
Love and Joy come to you,
God bless you and send you a Happy New Year!

Friday, December 24, 2010

T 'was A Ride before Christmas


T'was a ride before Christmas, and all through the barn,
not a creature was stirring, no cause for alarm.
The hand made stockings were hung by the tack room with care;
in hopes that our Secret Santa's soon would be there.


The day had surprised us and turned out to be bright,
Snow was forcasted and to my delight, my day off was so pleasant to visit the mare and to ride, upon driving through the gate I did spy; 
The horses were NOT all nestled in the stalls for the weather;
but all sunning themselves in fields and paddocks...not a  tether!

Me in my warm winter Breeches and boots ,
 the mare looking on in her blanket of freshely applied muddy, brown goo.
I fetched her in a flash, and tacked up just as fast, not wanting to waste another minute...of stealing back a day from winters grip and to own it!


The ground was soft and warm from the sun's glow,
which gave the mare pause, so we decided to go slow.
After hand walking through all the gates,
unto the mounting stump , the joy of seeing  the mare wait.
With a hop up and a jump on, she looked ahead only;
so as the tightening of the calf and upright sit,
we walked right away,wholly!


~ On Wa mare good mare you are;
walking past all the stumps that might scare,
 only to have a pleased, soft eye stepping forward with out care!

As we cantered the first road with a loose rein,
the mare blew her nostrils out and such a thrill;
my joy, my sighs and laughter as I rode,
 a cayenne chocolate pony, with a dark chocolate mane!

Washashe mare dawned her striped blanket off her hind end,
as she strode through crisp airs of December and then;
as her head bobbed this way and that cheerfully going,
this mare enjoyed this Christmas ride so much~
 she showed no sign of slowing.

Riding along the soft trails I thought;
how glorious, how wondrous and how blessed,
my throat caught...
To have such pleasure and to be where we were,
made praises come rise up in my heart and voice, aloud I did sing,
just as the jingle bell's song on my mare's saddle, did ring.

video

Counting my blessings I began with a chuckle and grin,

as I rode a Cayenne and dark chocolate pony in a God filled land .
A simple prayer and praise rose up through my grin, and the mare gave me a wink as we stopped by a pond.


I allowed her a bite and rest, before we strode on~



Jingle ~jangle my bell rang out as we went,
 away into the gifted day, the Cayenne, dark chocolate mare and me took to be  heaven sent.
The prayer, the priase, the song we knew, 
 to be such JOY- Of- LIFE- God's Christmas gift~ rising again anew!

Please join with the mare and me to gleen such a sight;
as seen deep within, a heart kept right.
These gifts and more to be found  and felt light,
HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, AND TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

She's backkk!

My Sissy and my Mare!

Since we have had monsoons in the weather department...  we really could not ride together this trip in town for my sister. We decided to go to my stable and do groundwork and my sissy would ride the mare, and tell me what she thought on her soundness.

 I had allowed her to get too "Goaty" with  long hair everywhere, so her other mother, trimmed her up for me.

For being in  (open stalls to 150 ft runs) for almost 2 weeks and having my ride last -5 days prior, and only arena turnouts. We have had record rains of 1-2 inches a day...and a TORNADO, yesterday, in Oregon!It just missed Oregon City, yet another town, less than 100 miles away, did NOT get missed. fortunately, no one was seriously hurt.

This day, mare was totally docile. Her whole herd was in the barn with her too, which made for a relaxed time.
She yields very well to my sister needing to look at her work on the bridle path.


I did ride *the arena last time out, which makes it the second time for me since we moved in.
***For those of you that may be wondering why I mention it and have moved to an arena...my mare dislikes the arena, and it is pain mostly she remembers and associates with it from a previous trainer(s). This trainer tied her into frame, used a very harsh bit, beat her when she misbehaved and used a saddle the left open wounds on her, and he'd then put plastic over them, and saddle up!
Almost 30 days in a row.

 So... When I ride the *arena, I must be sure nothing is painful.
 I have no saddle to comply with that(right now) so a bareback (and padded) saddle pad is used. I usually ride bitless, though I have her dental work done yearly and also checked from time to time , in between, by my Equine therapist. She loves the footing, it is soft and even. She has had massage, stretching and warm ups...

Today, my sister decided to try her out...as I do get nervous sometimes...though the last ride -5 days ago- was excellent. We did in hand, and then lunge, both directions for 6-7 minutes, Cavallettis...lots of obstacles to look at and manage around.

My sister is a traditional trainer, she likes the use of bits for the horse to accept light contact and partner with her. So  I used the rubber mouth, unjointed snaffle. Just a straight piece of rubber with the rings on the ends.
Part , if not all of my mare's  problem now is-"MENTAL PAIN".
This  is what we decided it really is with her and the arena, is her great fear of being trapped.
So having a soft bit and also a non-reactive rider is tantamount. Me, having all sorts of trainers in the various stables I've been in,  has given me all sorts of  actions/advise for dealing with my mare's eruptive behaviour.
 It all had failed...and I have tended to ride the vast outdoors instead. Though- an outdoor arena suits us fine too.

Today, the goal is soft and relaxed. Hoping to have the mare bend a little and stay supple and longer while doing walking/halt/walk transitions. She also wanted her to accept the outside rein.
(please accept my apologies for the terrible photography..low light and high action has me stumped!)

We lunged for a short time...just to warm the mare up, she tends to be very cold backed and stiff. Then my sis walked long reined into short and back again...over and over.


The mare remained calm


This is my mare's impression of a race horse...looking through the starting gate.


The mare was fairly receptive for the first rounds of walking, my sis  letting her head out and then gathering up the reins.


                                                                                         
Good mare, you be nice to my sister, and not kill her!
Then, as she instituted the outside rein as the guiding rein...the mare got agitated...that familiar "look of- don't hem me in" came across her face into body. My sis was leaving the inside rein open and sometimes leading her with it...but still...


She was about to do her thing that she does to me...and  I think my sis had the thought it was me, and her responding to me...till...


And UP they went!
 The mare surprised herself, I think. My sister sat back...till she had to reach around her neck, to remain on her. There was never any danger of my mare going over...though I think my sis thought so.



She came down again, my sister collected the reins and asked for a walk, as if nothing happened...and it was as if nothing happened!
Though as they continued on, my sis talked to me about this event, she said her heart was racing and knows now what I go through, in the arena!
My sis was being totally fair, following her mouth, sometimes resting her hands upon her withers and not asking for much. The mare reacts violently to connection to the bit and feeling trapped.

Even the hint sometimes, of connection to one side only. And sadly, bitless too.



She was good for the rest of the ride mostly. Here, she takes offence with my sister asking for a little bend and release




                       There you go Wa mare...just chill out!


A little horsey hug, a little more rubbing of the reins to supple and accustom the mare to a contact without pain. It looks like my sis is pulling, though she is massaging her hand, up and down the inside rein.



She "recovered quickly"..and that is what we are looking for!

You are such a sensitive girl Wa mare! And We love you so much- REALLY!


My sister then decided to attach ONE side rein only, and lunge her a short time. It is the OUTSIDE contact she wants the mare to accept.
This is where she really strutted her stuff, enough for my sister to say again...you're mare is sound and moving up nicely/evenly.
 I agreed!


                  She volunteered a nice canter several times


Though she did not watch where she was going, on occasion and  tripped once-that turned out to be hilarious ~ Out takes at end.
        



She fussed a little, but relaxed into her short small trot, and here her "trot up" trot. My sister did many transitions, requiring the mare to remain in contact and lower or she had to move on again...till finally...the session ended on a very good note!


You did so well Wa!


Out takes...that  made us laugh...she tripped once, then spooked herself another time as she rounded  to the middle and saw a barrel in her way.."oou where's that come from!"


Funny thing was, as my sis asked her to calm down, in  quiet tones, the mare did, very quickly and never jerked the lunge line..she remained in light and steady contact while she jumped around!

Though the mare was reactive, my sis did not give resistance and it lent to her recovering quickly.
My next ride, will be in the bitless and I will take all the same measures to engage her mind in groundwork before hand and also to remain calm, as my sis did.
 We shall see....I have all the time in the world and there can be as many "Details" as the day calls for...and someone will come and feed me...is what I tell her..as well as MUCH praise for any effort she offers!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

A Christmas horse Tale~ the end ~ is the BEGINNING!


 ...From the last post, I had been catching up with my Green Grocer friend about JACK, the White Horse, that stole her heart....

As you all may have figured out, She has been reunited with her beloved white horse, but this is still the story of how she came to that point!

I made a date with Gwen to go see her beloved White Horse last week, and she began to tell me bits and pieces of how long it took to find him.  As I drove, I listened intently to the sorted story, and the country roads took us to the barn where Jack is now residing. 

It was a very cold and windy day, out in the country where Jack resides

Not wanting to interrupt much,  is why this story has been drawn out a bit.  I'm not really as naughty as you may think...I really could not  rush the details. I  did wish to start the story with what I had though, as long posts don't suit me.

As the story goes....
It happened so quickly, one day poor Gwen was faced with a situation. The woman that had allowed her to groom and care for Jack & had told her that," he was hers",  now,  had decided to trade Jack for two other horses!
Oh poor Gwen, she told me just yesterday, as I sat in the Grocer gathering this story...tearily....she was speachless and did not know what to do.
She somehow managed a deal with the new owner, that lived in Canby,  to come see him still...but then, within 2 months,  this new woman SOLD him!

                                        Neat artful things everywhere, in the gardens where Jack resides

Gwen was despirate to find him again. The woman sold him for $1,000.  and told Gwen the name only, of the fellow that bought him.

  As I stopped into the Grocer from time to time, I had known that she had looked and looked for him over the past year...driving to and fro, through the countryside, till one day, SHE FOUND HIM ! This was due to her online searching and narrowing it down to a city, and a certain amount of acreage.

I was in a boarding stable at the time, with both the mares Pantz and Washashe. I had wanted to take her to my stable, but feared the condemnation of the owners, who were extremely judgmental and critical.
We met one day, and I risked it, and took her to meet my mare. We only stayed a short while then jetted off, to go drive by her found horse.
 She then told me that the owner of him now, was not a nice man. I won't go into the details, but..he really wasn't a good bloke.
She had done some research on him and also had seen him, as she petted Jack once, from outside the fence line. The wife had shooed her away.

The place was a mess...just the sort of place you'd expect to see a man with a riffle slung over his shoulder, waiting for an excuse to shoot you! The ill natured man, that allowed this white horse to be kept in a metal scarp yard, with wire and machinery everywhere, had recently placed MANY "No Trespassing" signs up.

My heart sank that day.

I thought the journey was over for my lovely hearted friend and the white horse, for sure!


Going into the pasture, to find a deaf horse!


Time passed by us both that year, in a disheveled fashion. I ended up relocating my mare to another boarding situation, but kept contact through shopping at the Green Grocer, with Gwen. 

 She had lost some of her sparkle the white horse had lent her, through appreciating his continence and loving him. It was heart rendering, as SHE WAS HIS TRUE PARTNER!

One day this past summer, she had told me that she had News of Jack... I learned it was = that she was his owner !

                                               Gwen, swinging her arms...to get the attention of HER Jack horse!




Apparently, the man that bouight Jack for $1000 decided that he was not a good "cutting horse", and wanted him off the payroll.
He walked into Gwen's store- this past July- she immediately burst into tears, after he said his name.  And after she had "her moment"...he said, "You want that white horse?" She said, "YES!"

She bought him on the spot for $1,000 and  just as quickly, arranged for  him to be trailered to a friends place. This friend has a small barn /garden at her house, she sells to Gwen- "Greens" from her garden, for the Green Grocer store. She has followed the story of heartache and had told Gwen,"if I have a stall, and you have a horse, you are welcome to keep it at my place".

                             I truly adored seeing my friend with her lovely White horse Jack!


That wonderful day I went into the Green Grocer was because, I craved the ending- to the story- of the White Horse Love, for Gwen.

                                   Jack, as he emerges from the evergreens, later on that same day~


You are Gwen's Christmas horse Jack, her Dreams come true with you!

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