It has been a while. It always seems like this time of year, between New Years and spring, is a kind of slow time of year. There is not a lot going on. Not much for holidays, the weather is cold and the days are short so there is not a lot going on outside. We get up, got to work or school, come home, make dinner and work on home work and watch TV. Repeat ad nauseum. I'm not complaining, it has just always been a slow time of year. But, there is always a little something going on.
Ebony and her schooling:
Ebony is doing better. She is much calmer when she walks away from the trailer. She starts to get a little nervous when she is waiting at the arena and no other horses are around. Once the other horses show up she calms down quite a bit. Ebony did get is serious trouble with Carly a few weeks ago. Kira and Carly were riding in pairs. Without warning, Ebony bit Carly on the leg. One day when Kumi and Kira were riding in pairs, Ebony bit Kumi on the leg. Ebony got in big trouble both times. We are going to have to watch that closely. We can't have a horse that is biting the other riders in a show. *sigh* Two steps forward, one step back. (But that still means progress is being made!)
Ebony is better at standing still when she is being mounted, but she doesn't like it. She wants to turn around and bite you but I have taught her that she really does not want to bite when somebody is mounting her. So she pins her ears and bites on her bit. We will still be working on this to try and calm her down so that she stands quietly during mounting. Once you are on her, Ebony is probably the best horse we have in terms of collection and holding her pace.
Mariah and her lessons:
Mariah is our go horse. And I have set a goal to get her under control. Specifically, we are focusing on speed control and brakes. Before I can do anything else with her, she needs to be able to control her speed from seat cues. And we are starting to make decent progress. In an arena. On the trail, not so much. But once we get it mastered in the arena we will take it on the trail and start all over again. But it should go much faster.
Kira and I went riding on Friday. We spent a little time in the back yard and I worked Mariah up to a sweat. We decided to walk the horses through the open space behind the house to cool Mariah off. There is a large irrigation ditch behind the house that is empty this time of year. I tried to get Mariah down into it a few days earlier but whe WOULD NOT go down. I tried again with Kira and Mariah wouldn't go down but Ebony would. And that got Mariah to go down into the ditch. She was nervous as we walked along the bottom of the ditch. The bank where we went down was very shallow and easy to walk down. When you get past that point the banks are almost vertical and about 8 or 9 feet tall.
After walking along the ditch for a while, I asked Kira if she wanted to turn around and go back to where we started. As I was asking Kira I started to turn Mariah around. When she was facing this 9' tall nearly vertical bank she decided that it was her time to exit. And she did. I am not really sure how she did it. All I know is that we were standing on the bottom of the ditch and the next second we were standing on the top of the ditch bank. I didn't lose my seat or even feel slightly out of balance during the transition though Kira did say my eyes got rather large and surprised. Kira was in a bare back pad and Ebony followed us out of the ditch. Kira stayed on, but just barely.
Kumi is loving Red Division. All of the riders have risen to the occasion. They are doing all their drills at a lope and loving it. Kumi is a little frustrated with Beamer. He wont break into a fast lope. In fact, I am thinking about changing his mane to Pepe Le Pew. That is what he looks like when he is loping.