Wednesday, April 30, 2014

One very brief hiatus coming right up.

Bobby is getting three days off (including yesterday) to munch on small doses of Bute and large doses of probiotics while dealing with a Lyme flare up.

After Monday's ride where he was pretty meh after getting worked as opposed to "GIVE ME ALL THE COOKIES AND SNUGGLES AND WHERE IS MY KITTY I MUST ANNOY SNUGGLE HIM, TOO!!!", I took his temp. It was spot-on at only 99.1, but I could tell he just wasn't himself.

normal bobby includes playing with the crossties and pillaging my locker for cookies.

His temp checked out, his feet were nice and cool, his gums looked good, he'd eaten up all his grain and was demanding more alfalfa from BM, and overall he looked to be in good health, but his attitude was a little too non-invasive for normal. I refuse to give him Doxy unless he has a serious, serious issue with the Lyme--and my vet is on board with this--so the Bute should make him comfortable, as well as the time off, and I'll see how he's doing back under saddle on Friday.

meanwhile he's doing all the grazing since BO is a spring grass nazi--which is super.
the ponies don't agree however.

I know most of you are like, "Who the fuck cares?" and the rest of you are like, "I can't believe she took the effort to write this post when it has nothing to do with anything."

WELL, I am trying to be a responsible blogger and keep consistent updates. So there.

And in more responsible blogger news, tomorrow is my May goals post (that I have yet to finish); on Friday I should have an update on how Bobby is doing and what classes (if any) we'll be showing in at the barn show Saturday; on Saturday is the barn show; and on Sunday is the dressage show.

So take that for being responsible. That looks like a whole shit load of fun posts to me!

Monday, April 28, 2014

So many interesting things!

Where has the time gone? Why have posts not been writing themselves? I appear to have been sucked into the Rolex vortex, and I also spent way too much time frolicking around outside "helping" Hubby "plant the garden". That really just involved me throwing the dog's football and occasionally wielding a rake. But I am so good at moral support!

Have there been interesting things going on in the life of one Bobby Magee in my abbreviated absence? Nope. Not really. I'll try to make it sound like there has been though.

i have no idea what i'm looking at, but it was obvi fascinating.

We had a very abbreviated jumping session on Thursday where we went through a triple combination that was all of 2' about four times total. It was only made notable by how intent my underwear was about invading my personal space, if you know what I mean.

i only have flat pictures to share. sorrynotsorry.

Friday exciting things did happen. Or really, they would have happened if I had had to get off my horse and beat the holy shit out of one young gelding that was channeling some wild stallion vibes which including staring us down fully erect with his ears pinned. Oh hell to the no. Fortunately, I have yet to meet a horse that has not yielded to the voice of Carly the "I will take you down, mother fucker" Horse God, and after he got his verbal smack down he stayed well clear of us.

But wait! I even have helmet cam footage from this!


I think it goes without saying that you should never ride your horse among a group of other horses unless you're a) retarded, b) on a horse you trust implicitly not react to other horses shenanigans, or c) a certified horse whisperer yeller. I am all of these things so I've yet to have a problem.

Want to seem more breathtaking helmet cam footage of our conditioning ride on Friday that also involved a few very tiny jumps? Yes, I thought you might.



If you're debating whether on not you have two minutes of your life to spare to watch the above videos, I'll go ahead and tell you to find something better to fill your time. Nothing exciting happens in them.

Sooo, where does that bring us? This is the problem with being such a lazy fucking blogger. I feel like I have to make everything interesting as opposed to just one ride. Hmm. Saturday Bobby had off. Sunday we ran through all three First tests. Or really, I ran through all through tests. Bobby slept through them, and he was mortally offended when I got after him in our last canter in 1-3 because he thought he should be done. Poor, poor Robert.

too sleepy in 1-1.

Today we did more dressage. Bobby was a little more alive for this round, which included locking onto a pile of ground poles that was making up our "dressage arena" while doing counter canter serpentines, snatching the reins, and blowing over them like he'd gotten some Rolex inspiration himself. Taken by surprise, I pulled a one-rein stop and further cemented the idea in Bobby's brain that jumping in a bit is never a good idea because I am clearly trying TO KILL HIM. Nevermind that we weren't actually jumping. I had to take a moment to talk him off the ledge before we could proceed with our regularly scheduled programming again.

either lengthening or just looking awkward.

Other than that, he was pretty good until the very end when I wanted to do a couple of trot-halt-trots to finish.

Bobby said no.

Bobby said he has never been asked to do such a ridiculous exercise before.

Bobby said that clearly the better option was to give your rider the dirtiest look possible, and if that didn't work, try going sideways instead of forward.

hold on, bobby. didn't we just practice halts yesterday?

What could have been two minutes of practice turned into fifteen. I normally tread very cautiously when it comes to Bobby having a mental tantrum as he's not the most stable of dudes, but he was really being pretty absurd. Plus, he wasn't getting wound up about not wanting to trot off. He was just like, "Nope. Not today, thank you."

But we did manage to finish how I wanted, and he got a warm, soapy bath and a long graze in the sun afterwards. I win this one, Mr Magee!

he leads a rough life.

Also, I need ten thousand pairs of new gloves. Look! A giveaway just for me!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

TBT: Baby Bobby Learns to Pony

with former ex-roper and all around champion jackson as his mentor.

bobby clearly paying no attention to us.

"herp derp. i do not understand this game."

perfectly respectable baby racehorse in the making.
(and, as a long yearling, already taller than his pony horse.)

he never did grow into his ears.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Dressaging

The past two rides, Bobby has been super. I'm glad he seems to like the dressage saddle so much, and that it's clearly made a difference in the way he goes because...

I'm getting one for my birthday! Yay!

i'm not scowling. as you can tell by my glow in the dark skin, i'm just allergic to sun.

Yesterday, I only rode for twenty minutes. We were in the indoor with Sarah and a mysteriously lame Memphis, the ring was ridiculously dusty, and it was pouring. What does that have to do with riding? When you have riding ADD like I do, it means the fact that I was able to get even twenty minutes of productive work done is a small miracle. Go me!

I've been trying to alternate our warm up by occasionally not using the longe line to warm him up on. Some shows don't have the space to longe and I want to know how to best warm him up without it. Plus it's one of my goals this month to figure out how much warm up time he needs before going in the ring.

Well, he was pretty much a rock star in all things even without a spin on the line first today. He could do no Bobby wrongs. His warm up was light and flawless, and BO even made a point to stop on her way out to tell me how amazing he looked in his canter work.


While Bobby was prancing around being too cute for words, I was on a mission from God the core fairies. I knew I was in a good position--and by that I mean I wasn't horizontal on my horse, and by that I don't mean anything dirty, you fucking freaks--if my abs were on literal fire. It was super good practice, and I was able to sit his new lofty gaits a lot easier when I had some stability going on. 

We focused a lot on leg yields (puh-retty good, especially since they were nonexistent a couple of weeks ago), the ten meter figure eight at X in 1-3 (tricky, but not too bad), and center line halts. I've always taken Bobby's halts for granted because they're usually pretty flawless, but we've both gotten lazy with them. A quick tune up and he was back to being forward into them and square upon stopping. 

Overall, just two really good flat rides. I think I'm going to jump tomorrow even though this dressage thing is so much fun when it's going well. Hopefully Bobby will be awake for work then. The dude spends more time napping than any horse I know.

going...

going...

gone.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

VCBH: Appreciating What You Have

I have yet to do a Viva Carlos Blog Hop because they're either far too clever for my tiny brain to work out, or I don't have the necessary subject matter to participate (like money to buy things for my horse on an immediate level, or a trainer). But I'm going to go all abbreviated title anyway like I've been part of the cool kids club all along.


Most of my blogging centers around all of the naughty things Bobby likes to do so, this will be a nice change of pace.

Let's take a moment to appreciate the Pros of our current ponies, whether you own them or just ride them in lessons. 


  • Bobby has excellent ground manners. He stands like a statue for the vet, to get his feet done by his amateur farrier (that'd be me), he doesn't mind people or horses freaking out around him, and you can quite literally crawl over or under him without him doing anything.
  • Bobby ground ties anywhere and everywhere. This is an excellent party trick as people always seem very impressed with it.
  • Bobby self loads onto any trailer.
  • Bobby is not even remotely spooky. Things that make normal horses lose it cause him to turn an ear in that direction...if he's willing to put forth that much effort.
  • Bobby is an honest jumper, and has never refused a fence because he finds it scary. 
  • Bobby is an exceptionally fancy mover when his brain is in the right place.
  • Bobby is game to try anything. Eventing, trail riding alone in a new place, ponying nutty horses, barrel racing, driving--he gives zero shits.
  • Bobby has never met a horse he doesn't like. He thinks his fellow creatures were put on this earth to be his best friends, and he's very good at being a buddy for less confident horses.

it goes without saying that his greatest attribute is his overwhelming beauty.


 

Monday, April 21, 2014

We have lift off! Or just lifting.

I'm going to have to do something about this whole picture taking thing. There must be pictures for a blog post, and no one wants to see napping Bobby pictures every day, so Hubby is going to have to keep coming out on weekends to do cameraman duty. But I think I'm going to have to stuff him under the bleachers where he can go all incognito, and I can pretend like he doesn't exist.

The difference in my rides when there's someone in the arena with me that I want to talk to and the rides where I'm either by myself or with someone I can't carry on a nonstop conversation with are marked. I can't stay focused on Bobby, my corrections are sharper (and not in a good way) because I can't make my brain slow down to work through the issue methodically like Bobby requires, and I rush through warm up.

oh, hey. don't mind me slouching and bobby clamping his jaw shut.
we're just working hard on ignoring each other.

I did throw Bobby on the longe first yesterday before our ride which really helps loosen up his back and get his muscles warm. Ever since the Lyme diagnosis, he starts out pretty stiffly and he needs as much long and low as he can get to move out comfortably.

Once I got on after the very abbreviated longe that involved no cantering due to lack of space from another horse in the arena, he was actually really lovely and soft both at the walk and trot....as long as we were going left.

so cute.

To the right, he went back to hauling on my left rein. He's so off and on about the days he does this. Some days he won't pull even fractionally while other days he just dumps himself onto that puppy. I don't know if it's something I'm doing differently, or if it's a physical issue for him--like he's sore that day, or the old neck injury on his left side is hurting, or what. I've been having success with counter bending him to lighten up on it, but I was too busy blabbing to Hubby to complete the process and it wasn't until the very end of the ride that he finally lightened up as much as I'd like.

hubby told me he'd build me a back brace out of wood and metal rods if i didn't sit up.
i might take him up on that. but look how cute the pony is!

I'm also having a new problem sitting the canter. This dressage saddle must fit him a lot better over his shoulders than my jump saddle because he is having no issues with lifting his front end up...way up. He's always had a lot of front-end jump to his canter which is all well and good, but now it's cray cray. I don't even know how to describe it. It's just really hard to keep my ass planted when his entire body is leaping through the air like some charging war stallion.

sure, it looks innocent enough...

We finished up the ride with a run-through of 1-3. Hot damn, you can really feel those twenty feet of arena our outdoor is missing from being the length of a standard dressage ring when trying to leg yield off the rail to X, and then do two ten meter circles. Bobby tried his hardest though, and he didn't get frazzled when I asked him to really hustle over. Small win!

He also nearly flung me right out of the saddle for our final trot lengthening much to Hubby's delight. I like that he's feeling good enough to really reach out and use his hind end to propel his front end to such heights but I am so incapable of keeping up with him right now. I don't know how the hell people sit big, fancy Warmbloods' extended gaits. It's going to take lots of hours in the dressage saddle to get comfortable with it again.

first lengthening.

He got today's super warm day off to enjoy running naked in the sacrifice area since the grass is finally coming in and everyone is locked off of it. Back to flat boot camp tomorrow. Hopefully Hubby has that brace finished by then so I can sit slightly straighter than a scoliosis patient.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Going Sideways

But in a good way!

not in a "fuck you, evil whore" way!

Ever since the reintroduction of a dressage saddle, Bobby has been taking his role as a dressage horse very seriously, and damn is he fancy. Maybe I was giving him a complex by trying to ride a dressage test in a jump saddle?

Who knows the mysterious ways Bobby's brain works.

I rode him in the outdoor Friday, and he was having a little bit of a baby brain going on. He could occasionally see the horses in the indoor, and there were quite a few people around bringing horses in and out which caused much googly eyes and giant mule ears swiveling around towards anything but me. Not that he was scared by any of this, of course, it was just something far more exciting than having to bend properly.

After a good, long canter where we did several counter canter loops and simple changes, he was finally ready to get to work. I was like, "Thank goodness I brought my dressage tests up. It's going to be awesome to practice these while he's being so good."

Then I was like, "Mother fucker. My dressage tests are still in my locker."

I was trying to remember how any of the tests went (because apparently if I can't at least glance at them I remember nothing. YOU KNOW NOTHING, JOHN SNOW CARLY.) while wandering around in circles  until Bobby got very bored with the whole thing and parked himself in the middle. Normally I try not to let him come to a full and complete stop during a ride because he tends to think he's done. When I ask him to go back to work, he's all, "No, no. I don't know how to do anything correctly. You already warmed me up? I already did what you're asking? Pretty sure no. Now admire my beautiful llama face."

But yesterday he stepped right back into work where we'd left off.

And let me say, it was ballin'. Is Bobby now agreeing to shoulder in? Yes. Is he leg yielding both on and off the rail? Shit yeah he is! He was a leg yielding machine yesterday which earned him all the patties in the world.

shit yeah, dora!

Sooo....I went ahead and sent in my entry for First for the dressage show May 4th. I told BO I was going to show there on my way out and she told me L--owner of Bobby's favorite lady horse in the whole entire universe, Tasha--was also going to it to show Training. Since BO is trailering them, she said to just give her some gas money (which I'd have to spend anyway using my own rig) and tag along with them. Now I just have to get in touch with the secretary to see if she can schedule our rides times as close together as she can get them so one of us isn't sitting around for two hours waiting for the other to finish. Sounds like a win-win to me!

Today we played around in the cross country field doing some conditioning work. Bobby was not overly impressed with my insistence that he canter on whatever lead I asked him to, but I was not overly impressed with him almost falling on his face when he changed leads to the opposite direction we were traveling when going downhill.

saying hello to school ponies before going to work.

I'm hoping I can drag Hubby out for dressage pictures tomorrow. We're meeting his family in the afternoon for some random Easter lunch/dinner in some random park in some random city halfway between our houses. I didn't know of this until this morning when Hubby texted me we were bringing sides. I feel like applying for sainthood for this. It's only April and I've already surpassed my in-law quota.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Word vomit

The time has come.

The time to return to regular blog posts about regular riding things, that is. Thank the deity of your choice, am I right?

Of course I'm right.

So what sorts of toodlie doodlie things have RuPaul and I been up to?

On Sunday I hooked him to the cart and drove him around the outdoor. He did not give one fuck until he got tired and then he decided the power steering was broken. I can't blame him there. That cart is heavy, and our footing is super deep. It's not the best combination for driving. But the fact that Bobby hadn't seen the cart, been hitched, or driven since August of last year, and yet he walked right off with my butt plopped down in the cart with no sight of a "I'm going to lay down, right here on the ground, until you come to your senses" tantrum was pretty bad ass.

i have no driving pictures this time around
because i made hubby stay connected for our first outing. 

On Monday, I dug out a dressage saddle from the deep, dark pits of the carriage house (that houses, you may be surprised to read, the carts and harnesses as well winter blankets and all the random pony things you expect to find in a large barn) and had a flat ride. Hot damn have I forgotten the joys of riding in one of those babies. My legs hung low, my shoulders stayed back, and I wasn't tipping forward.

However, it was not the most coordinated of rides. I tried to make my stirrups relatively long in my jump saddle while flatting, but there's really no comparison to long dressage stirrups. I felt a little wobbly at first and Bobby was not impressed with this at all. I was getting super frustrated with him, and he was getting super pissed at me so we had a little time out and just stood there. For ten minutes. Doing nothing.

After calming down, I did some pressure and release at the halt and praised him profusely. He was like, "Well, duh. Just tell me what the fuck you want me to do instead of bouncing around and pulling and we'll get along just fine." Okay, Bobby. Because you're always such a pleasant cow to work with. Way to try to play the "Woe is me" card, bro. But we got ourselves sorted out and finished on a good note.

i have no dressage pictures either.
here's bobby sleeping on the job instead.

Tuesday he had off to use all his mental powers to deal with the fifty degree temperature drop. Oh, that's right. It was seventy when Hubby left for work that morning and got all the way down to twenty three overnight. Bogus, weather. You are officially broken. Fortunately, the snow was gone by noon the next day and Bobby dealt with it fine.

Wednesday was another dressage ride in the dressage saddle. I felt a lot more secure this time around and Bobby was stellar. He even did a leg yield both ways, both to the rail and off the rail without a single temper tantrum. YAY!!! I love dressage saddles. They are the best for dressaging. Now to get my legs to stay in place more and my sitting trot to last more than thirty seconds...this whole correct body position thing is the pits.

"bobby! how enthused are you to jump?!"
"super enthused."

Which brings us to today. It was past time for a jump school. (Actually, I think the last time I wrote an actual riding post I was going to do a jump school. I didn't. It rained. Then I tried the next day, jumped a few 3'3" fences, felt unmotivated, and went for a short trail ride. Stimulating stuff, I tell you.) I set everything up at 2'6"--I even measured because everything looked really small. I did a course I found saved on my computer marked "GM". I assume it's a course from a George Morris clinic I read about forever ago. Who knows.

i would give credit, but i don't remember where it came from.

Due to lack of standards and a liverpool, I cheated a bit. The liverpool was only a blue vertical with cones for fill, and the single oxer (#4) was also just a vertical. For the wall I used the gate and built it out like one of you hunter's cheating verticals where there's actually like 3' of ground line in front of the jump.

I warmed up with a lot of canter, playing around with collecting and extending his stride. After a couple of warm up fences where he was jumping flat, I brought him back and made him trot in. That got his back cracking and we were ready for the course.

(Hang in there, dudettes. This shit is almost over.)

I brought him outside of the ring to stand for a minute before heading back in for a trot circle and picking up the canter by our imaginary judge. The first course was meh. I had him gunned up a little too much, but it wasn't too bad. I tried for the tight right turn at three, but there wasn't enough room there for it. Bobby hopped a couple of steps and propped which led to a very unfortunate meeting between my crotch and pommel.

Back outside the gate to try again. I will give him credit for standing very patiently outside the ring. Usually immobility when staring down jumps is not one of Bobby's specialties. The second course was a lot quieter and a lot smoother. I went left instead of right after three and came around to four off the short side. I quit there.

And thus ends the most rambling post ever.

Sorry.

Kind of, but not really.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Rerouting

Things have been quiet on the blogging Bobby front because I've been feeling a little lot lost as far as goal setting and reaching is going. Lay down a killer practice dressage test? Meh. Who cares. My horse won't do a leg yield anymore so I don't think that dressage show is happening in a couple of weeks. Why even bother dressaging if I can't do it at First? Jumped around a few 3'3" jumps with literally no issues? Whatever. I don't even give a fuck.

So I'm reevaluating this year's goals and ambitions.

I set up my show schedule perfectly for a move up to Training. Like, I'm seriously impressed with myself on how well I got it sorted out. But...where last year I was anxious to get the move up over with already, and I was really disappointed at how our season ended so abruptly, this time I really don't care.

maybe i'll save all my show funds to purchase bobby a fancier cart.
no, i won't. 

Do I want to show at Training? Yes. Absolutely. But do I want to stress over the costs of showing and hauling, or worrying about how one bad jumping round will derail the set in stone and so pretty and perfect schedule? Nope.

Does it gut me that this year might be yet another yet where Bobby and I tool around at Novice? Actually, not really.

Part of me is disappointed that I'm not rolling in money and able to take weekly lessons, add shows on the fly, and pack in a full schedule that an idiot could move up to Training on. But the money situation is not something that's going to magically change, so that's a pretty stupid thing to get hung up on.

Another part of me is feeling the pressure of not being as good as "my peers"--those imaginary people who I think are silently judging me but do not give an actual fuck about anything I do--of not showing bigger, but that shouldn't be a factor in doing anything anyway. (But it is because my mind is always like, "JUDGING. I AM JUDGING YOU.")

And yet another part of me is just twitching to erase such a pretty looking show schedule. Boo hoo.

Mostly though, I just want to go back to a few years ago where every show I went to was fun because I wasn't putting any pressure on myself. Everything was a learning process, and okay that stadium round wasn't the prettiest, or that cross country round made me feel nauseous leaving the start box, but by the time I was rolling around course, I was having a blast. Yay, we just completed a BN course without dying! Not "Fuck, I just scored a fucking thirty five on my dressage test. Fail. Fuck, that stadium round was the worst thing ever. Fuck, Bobby just stopped at that 3' fence on a massive downhill slope because I just sat there feeling sorry for myself about something that happened ten minutes ago. MY HORSE IS A FAILURE."

That shit isn't fun for anyone.

remember when not dying was an achievement worth celebrating?!

So I guess the new goal is to pick shows that I actually want to go to, and then go to them with the mindset of "Yay, I love being an eventer! If I ride well, my horse rocks at all the things!" If I feel like we're bored to death at Novice and a good event to go Training at comes up then all the better. Until then, I've scratched the previous (I just typed in precious instead. See? Even my fingers were impressed with this year's planning.) schedule and have penciled in a cross country schooling at the end of the month, possibly another lesson with Sam, and the first show at our fave venue instead of the rolling wilds of Plantation (where I can easily lose an extra $100 in gas money to get to even though it's closer in mileage than BH).

And that is literally it so far. Maybe now I can stop feeling sorry for poor old me and start blogging about poor old Bobby again.

Monday, April 14, 2014

So you want to live in the country.

Every now and then I deviate from riding and general horsey posts to wax poetic spew gibberish about other things going on in my life. A sister-in-law intent on sharing the contents of her uterus? Thanksgiving "break"? Christmas Nazis? All in-depth topics that have been covered on PWS.

Today's rant is, I guess, not really a rant so much as a recap of what has been going on the past few days out in here in the sticks of Pennsylvania. Technically it's like a rant inside my head about how I'm slowly going fucking crazy.

Last weekend, Hubby had noticed that the top of his beehive was missing. It was ridiculously windy so he figured it had probably just blown off. This past Thursday, I was sitting on the porch typing my little fingers off in the sun when I heard a huge crack in the woods behind our house. The dogs, who usually ignore such things, went on high alert. Naturally I assumed that the bear that visited last summer had returned, so I did what any good redneck girl would do: I grabbed my gun and camera and went to explore.

Well, there was no bear to be seen, but what I did find was the beehive strewn about the yard.


Boxes and frames had been pulled into the woods, and most of the comb had been eaten. As it the sheer destruction wasn't enough of a clue as to who the culprit was, our little (at least I hope it's little) friend left a calling card:

"i eat your bees and shit in your lawn!"
way to be a dick, bear.

Despite setting out a game camera, the only evidence we've caught of this sneaky bastard is a sliver of a back leg. Oh, and the fact that frames keep getting pulled deeper and deeper into the woods. Way to be a greedy dick, bear. At least show your face!

The game camera leads us to the next part of my "If I don't move back to suburbia by the time I'm forty, I probably won't live much longer" saga.

although to be fair, the pair of nesting bald eagles down the road is pretty amazing.

The dogs were obviously out in the woods with us when we set the camera up Friday. When we got back into the house, I was like, "Someone's bleeding." Hubby and I both shrugged it off because, to be honest, someone is always bleeding in this house for one reason or another. The dogs ate their dinner and then passed out on their respective doggy beds (And by that I mean Pig went to sleep on the Lazy Boy and Darcy took the love seat. As if they would actually sleep on real dog beds. Please.).

When Hubby and I got ready to go upstairs to our own beds, Pig came limping over. She was clearly the source of blood this time, so I checked the pad of her foot assuming she'd cut it open somewhere in the woods. Nope. Further inspection found a pinky nail sized cut on the tip of her hock. It looked pretty deep, but it was barely bleeding so I threw a quick gauze and vet wrap bandage on it to keep it clean for the night and thought nothing more of it.

That is until I went to let the two of them out in the morning and noticed her hind end was covered in blood from where her constantly wagging tail had smeared it from the pool of blood leaking through the vet wrap. I cut the wrap off and found that the little wound had split open even more overnight and was looking pretty nasty.

Is the local vet open weekends? No. Could my old vet from before we moved get her in? No. I was forced to call Bobby's vet who costs approximately ten million dollars more to do anything than any other vet on the planet, and of course they were able to get her an appointment right away. Two stitches, a fresh bandage, and a big bottle of antibiotics later, Pig was good to go.

piglet does not do stall rest. 

Alright. We're on the lookout for rogue wildlife. The dog's profuse bleeding has been taken care of. The bank account has been drained until Friday thanks to the dog's profuse bleeding. Let's make some fucking dinner and call it a night.

Hubby shooed the blackbird out of the barbecue where it had been building a nest and fired up some hamburgers. I got the electric fryer out to make some homemade french fries. While the oil heated up, I hung out with Hubby on the porch enjoying the awesome weather. I quickly dropped the potatoes in before heading back out. When the cheese was ready to go on the burgers, I went back inside to set the table and check the fries only to find the fucking Valdez oil spill in our kitchen.

Someone (that'd be me) had forgotten to put the cap on the nozzle where the oil drains, so the seal didn't hold like it's supposed to causing a gallon of peanut oil to dribble down into the washer (because we have zero counter space in our massive kitchen) and all over the floor. We ate dinner and spent an hour wiping up oil and mopping the floor.

Messy, but doable, right? Well, maybe right except for the fact that I forget to get the oil out of the washer before throwing a load of laundry in this morning. The clothes came out smelly and greasy, and I was like, "Huh?" before remembering what had happened.

So I dumped a cup of bleach and another cap of laundry soap in the empty washer, and I set it to run while I went and rode my horse. When I got back, I threw the damp, slimy clothes in for round two. My ride wasn't great, and while I was beyond excited to get my box of chocolate in the mail from Lauren (thank you, Lauren!!), I'm still not sure my underwear doesn't smell like fried chicken.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Product Review: Noble Outfitters MUDS

For those of you already friends with me on facebook, you might have seen that I won a recent giveaway from Dover for a pair of Noble Outfitters Muds boots. It couldn't have been a better giveaway win since I live in Northeastern-central (rural coal country, okay?) Pennsylvania where winter has refused to leave until this past week. I've been kind of sort of getting by with a cheap pair of pony inspired rubber boots from TSC, but they recently sprung a leak so to keep my feet dry I just avoid puddles. Which works really well when everything is under water.

A big box was waiting for me Friday when I got back from the barn where I had done an hour long ride in my tall boots, and almost another hour tromping around the outdoor setting up a course of jumps...and then resetting them when they kept blowing over from the wind. Needless to say, my feet were killing me. My tall boots are not exactly pedestrian friendly as much as they allow my inflexible heels to drop to the ground like I have five pound weight on them.

First impressions?

purple box
purple lining

Purple on the box. I am a marketing whore. Make something shiny, glittery, or purple and I'm your girl. Bonus? THE LINING IS PURPLE. Done. I'm sold. Review over.

the one and only time they'll be clean.

Since my feet were aching from being in riding boots, I stuffed them into these puppies and proceeded to stomp around the house in them for the next three hours because they're so comfortable. The foot bed is incredibly cushioned with enough heft to the bottom of the boot to make you feel like you're not going to step on something and immediately get impaled.


The top is tapered with a slightly fitted calf. It's definitely a lady's boot which I love because it means Hubby can't run off with them and stretch them a foot wider than my leg rendering them Carly-useless. Not that's happened before.

Oh, wait. Yes it has.


I wear a size 11 which is what I ordered these in. With just my slinky boot socks on, they felt maybe half a size too big, but once I put a regular pair of socks on, the fit felt a lot better. However, I still feel like I had enough space so that when winter rolls back around in a month or two (It's only April? Yeah, sure....) I don't think I'll have an issue cramming ten pairs of wool socks in there.

Overall? I've spent a lot of time just walking around in these boots this weekend and I'm in love with them. I like the look, I like that I can now wade through "muddy" manure pile runoff without getting my socks wet, and I'm in love with how comfortable they are. I won't have a problem doing a soggy cross country walk in these bad boys.


So thanks to Dover for the contest, and thanks to Noble Outfitters for a great pair of boots!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Hooves and a Week of Riding

Okay, so it hasn't technically been a full week, but I'm planning on doing a jump school tomorrow so hopefully that will warrant its own post.

I have been riding my lady balls off all week, but I just haven't had the motivation to write about it. Mostly because I've been busy with other things in life--which happens so very rarely--but also because I haven't really been that busy riding my lady balls off.

Bobby had Monday off, and on Tuesday we had a dressage school where the one and only focus was getting him off my left rein. He takes advantage of the fact that my left shoulder is one of the most useless parts of my body and has zero strength in it by pulling....and pulling, and pulling, and I just keep letting my reins slip through my fingers because it hurts too bad to give him any sort of connection when he gets heavy.

Then I notice that my reins are six inches longer than when I started, so I shorten them back up and he throws a fit because I shortened my reins. Rinse and repeat.

and here is a random picture from the weekend that has nothing to do with anything,
just to break up a wall of text.

I finally decided I'd try some dreaded counter bend to see if I could lighten him up that way since any sort of lateral work currently causes mass hysteria and therefore cannot be utilized. Counter bend? Bobby decided that on Tuesday it was acceptable, and he lightened up right away. We were able to run through Novice B and Training B, had a saunter up the hill, and called it quits.

Yesterday we went up to the cross country field for the first time in for-ev-er. I didn't plan on doing much since it was our first time up there in so long, but I had to get both of us out and back over real terrain again. We've been riding all winter long, but no amount of arena work compares to cantering up and down hills.

Bobby was a complete monster the entire time showing off his extended trot, extended canter, and extended "I'm half a second from running off with you" gallop. Who knew being back out in the field could be so very exciting? We jumped the little line of logs a couple of times, but the ground is still so slick up there that I didn't feel comfortable doing anything else.

But here's some crappy helmet cam footage of the last line we did:


I need to adjust the mount on it again. The stupid lock button does not want to stay in place so it's not at a great angle.

Today, to give my pathetically sore calves a break, I decked out Bobby in his driving outfit.

i was waving my arm around trying to get him to pose as bm stood there laughing.
she was like, "you don't need to get him to pose. he looks just like an amish horse right now!"

We both got to stretch our muscles after a hard workout the day before, enjoy the sunshine and warm weather, and do something that Bobby is really good at. I ground drove him all over the place for about thirty minutes and he was a superstar. He remembered his "gee" and "haw", and he stood patiently each time I asked him for a whoa. Maybe the cart will come out this weekend? He hasn't been hitched since last August, so I might just wait for a day when BM can help me.

all terrain driving horse.

And now for the moment you've all been waiting for....updated hoof pictures!

time for more thrust treatment in the RF!
these actually don't look as bad in person, though they look pretty miserable here.

I can't wait for the event lines to finish growing out so I can stop telling people "Those were caused by my previous farrier! He hasn't foundered, and he's no longer getting done in a way that's going to cause those. Look at the pretty new growth. Look at it."

Also, I just really wish he'd grow some heel. But at least he's sound on them!