Saturday, January 21, 2012

Not dead!

So my laptop charger is broke and I keep neglecting to get a new one/get it here I am on boyfriend's desktop. Not procrastinating.

Things are going well with Amber. I feel like my position is improving. Her stamina is much greater, and she goes into contact 90% of the time now. Not asking for it in canter yet because I feel she doesn't have the muscle for it, but we collect for a few strides at a time.

We cantered a crossrail recently, but I've decided not to jump outside lessons. I really need that expert critique from the ground because I'm most definitely still learning.

However, I do have some big news. Two big news in fact!

First, I am the proud new owner of a gorgeous dressage saddle. Yes.

Fits Amber perfect, and it's a very nice saddle. Came with 2 girths that I'm pretty sure will fit her nicely. Haven't ridden in it yet, but it looks super comfy.

So there's that, and she's going to her first show March 10.

It was kind of a hard decision. I decided to pick one shoe series to go to through the year, rather than several different ones. Reason being, besides the fact that she isn't ready to hit more than one show a month, I discovered that the shows at Equine Country (which is where I'd prefer to show over Johnston County), are mostly on the same dates as EDCTSA shows. I'm thinking I'll school dressage on my own time this year, work towards better jumping with Casey, and be more prepared next year to do those. And this year just poke around at Equine Country and actually have a chance for year end awards. Kind of bummed I won't be able to show in my new dressage saddle, but rush, next year we will be all the more prepared, and she will be more experienced at shows. EDCTSA is quite a bit more expensive to show in, so I'd rather do that and go in less "blind", and go in for our test run at a less expensive one.

The less I jump, the better I do. Although sometimes I feel like maybe I should just do dressage because I feel like I'm the world's worst jumper...but I just overthink approaching fences is all. I ride it like a dressage test instead of just keeping my shoulders back, hands forward and letting her carry me over the jump. I adjust everything too much.

That's most of the news. Amber is seeing a barefoot trimmer February 21st. It will be 7 weeks, and I'm hoping she can go that long. Trimmer told me if she starts stumbling, give her a call and we will do it sooner, but she's trying to get me on the same schedule as a nearby client so I will have less of a travel fee.

I'll try to post more updates in the future...sorry for going MIA again! ;)

Monday, January 2, 2012

Good Omens And Farrier Appointments!

So I'm knocking on wood here, literally, but I had a fantastic ride on the last day of the year AND the first day of the it a good omen for 2012? I hope so!

Obviously we had an awesome time with some great jumping New Year's Eve. I need to train myself NOT to look at the jumps. I do it because I try to keep her centered, but it's a bad habit. And on the flat, I look down at her head to see if she's too high or too low and to try to get her poll and withers at the same level - but that's also a bad habit and I can feel when she's correct and I don't need to do that, but blah. It's all just bad habits.

But having an awesome ride despite my lacking? YES!

And New Year's Day was just a quick flat ride, but she was still AMAZING. Nice slow canter, got all her leads, nice transitions. Really stretching down for me.

I do love my mare so very much...also, I checked our prints, and NO DRAGGING STILL!

The Stallings are coming to do her feet today, and I need to roll out in a few minutes. Taking Allie and Tills with me today. I also hear that the girl who used to lease Amber is coming, and she hasn't been out in forever. It's Amber's day off or I'd let her ride her today if she wanted, but hopefully she'll start coming back out more.

I also can't remember if I mentioned it yet, but Amber's show name is officially Queen of Diamonds. This has a lot of points, including a sentimental point.

Jack's show name was Jack of Hearts. So it's card-related like that. Diamonds are red, and Amber's a chestnut. And finally, her only marking is a tiny star - like a diamond. Yeah. It fits her. And of course, she thinks she's the Queen of the barn. She's starting to be happier about her stall life now that she knows she's going to get to go outside every day. I think being in jail for 20 hours a day at Halcyon made her pretty sour on the idea of stalls. Can't blame her. I can tell she's more content now. Her stall is almost twice as big too. She also enjoys being able to lay down for a nap in peace (tail full of shavings in the morning!).