Thursday, May 9, 2013


Yesterday, I got to the barn just as NF was finishing up his last horse so I got a chance to talk with him about Bobby's feet. He asked how our show went over the weekend and whether or not Bobby had had any issues keeping his balance cross country. He said that with the squared off toe in the back, horses can't quite dig their feet in as much and might lose traction a bit. I told him I thought Bobby felt great, but we discussed studs. We both want to wait as long as possible before having to use them because NF thinks that his feet are such a mess, tweaking with his shoes any more than we have to is just asking for a problem. He said that if Bobby really needs them, he can put some tiny studs in like he did for us over the winter and see if that works. For now, though, we're going to stay with where we're at.

I went to grab the horse to put him on the crossties and he started snaking his head and snorting as soon as he saw me. Sassy pants was pissed he missed his turnout the night before. Fortunately, Step Two of Operation: OUTSIDE DRESSAGE was longeing in side reins before I got on.

are those...neck muscles??
He had a little bit of sass on the line, but was overall pretty good. He longed for about ten minutes all together, and then I dumped side reins, longe line, and back up plan draw reins in a big pile and got on.

his tail is soooo long! (for him)
I was frustrated with myself at first. I've gotten so dependent on the mirrors in the indoor to track our progress that I didn't think I could tell if he was going correctly. I didn't want to let him get away with sub-par work, but I also didn't want to push him harder than he's been going without knowing it.

I had him do a lot of trot-halt-trot transitions with a few trot-halt-back-trots thrown in while focusing on keeping him straight and not launching above the bit when trotting off. Between the side reins and the transitions, he really stayed focused and all of the sudden I felt him click into Indoor Dressage mode. Ballin'!

Once he was in gear, it was easy peasy to keep him working correctly. We even had a stretchy walk break before picking up the trot and canter to the left again and he didn't throw a temper tantrum. We finished on a 20m circle cantering to the left, working really hard to keep his shoulder up and not drift out. He got it spot on for three strides and we called it quits there.

dressage mule.
Today was a scheduled jump day and, despite the massive amount of rain we got yesterday, we headed back up to the outdoor. The ring was absolute shoe-sucking slop. Oh, well. The footing at Bucks is almost identical to our outdoor and they're going to get just as much rain as us leading up to Sunday. It was like a home advantage! Sort of.

jump course.
After a brief warm up, I started Bobby off tracking right to the 2'9" vertical down the middle of the ring. He rubbed it so softly behind, he only knocked the rail out of the cup on one side. I didn't feel like getting off to put it back up, so we moved on to the oxer along the long side. Did that a few times, and then changed directions. We made a circle over the gate (against the short side of the ring), then made a line from the gate to the oxer, eventually also adding in the coop (angled against the other short side).

The first time adding in the coop, he jumped so big over the oxer that he landed uncoordinated and under-powered and he came to a slow, calm, "Um, no. That's a dumb decision." stop in front of it. Since I wholeheartedly agreed with him, I turned him around, circled, and came over the coop by itself. We finished there since he was not impressed with the footing and I didn't want him freaking himself out and getting panicked if he started sliding.

In other exciting news, I opened my locker yesterday and saw a giant pile of swag! NF and I were the only ones around, so I had no idea who it came from or if it was even supposed to be in my locker. I left it in there overnight and asked a.m. BM this morning about it. Apparently p.m. BM's mom owns a tack store (I think that's right) and BM got a bunch of loot and decided to share the wealth with me. Awesome!!!! So what did I get? A massive stack of dressage and eventing magazines, a shaped white show pad, a pair of black leather gloves, a bag full of half a dozen pairs of bell boots in swanky colors (not going to lie--lime green and hot pink excited me), and.....

It was like the best Pony Christmas in May ever. I can't wait to show off this bad boy this weekend.

rocking the lime green bell boots
Bobby gets tomorrow off. We'll do another outdoor dressage ride Saturday before he gets bathed and braided and locked down for a 4:30 am departure time. Ugh.


  1. Dude, I wish saddles would just magically appear in my tack trunk too!

    1. LOL, the 100 yo. saddle is borrowed from BO. BM got me the fancy ass OTTB pad.

  2. Sooo awesome you got all that stuff! I want fun bell boots. I don't know that I've ever used them...but I want them!

  3. So jealous of your swag and THAT PAD!!!!!

    1. Niamh, you are now a member of the OTTB club and should probably order that pad AND a OTTB tee!

    2. Ooh, yeah! You definitely need at least a tee, Niamh!

  4. uhm, the most jealous of your swag. where is my tack-gift-fairy at??

  5. oOooo, that pad is awesome! I have the white one :)

  6. Ooo presents! Yay!
    Also, Bobby looks tank as heck.

  7. Going to be honest, I may be tempted to steal that saddle pad. It looks even better than I thought, AND it's built for horses with withers! Double score.

  8. So fun that you got so much loot!!! :) love the pad.


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