Sunday, August 13, 2017

End of July Analysis; August Goals

Thank you all for sending your condolences.... it means a lot to me. I'm still a little bit in shock over it to be honest with you. Just doesn't seem to be real yet. And it's awfully lonely without him banging on my gate every night. Obviously I haven't been around for my goals until now, already in the middle of the month. 


O-Ren July:

1) Continue being a good momma horse!
Success! Not hard to do though... she is a wonderful mother.

2) Get back to work.... start riding again! And driving again? Depending on the tiny brat child and how unhelpful she is... I don't need the kid climbing into my carriage. 
I actually stalled out on this one because taking O away from Dylan and Cregga was causing some major drama. Not from her, and not really even from her child, but from Dylan. The stress of her being on the other side of the fence - where he could see her - was causing him such enormous distress that he would go off his feed and get diarrhea after every ride. Normally I tend to lean towards "suck it up and you'll get over it," but with a hyperemotional horse like Dylan who does not need to be giving himself ulcers or hurting himself while running like an idiot in the pasture, I decided it's just better to not work her for now.
So we will have to see what happens over the winter. In theory I would love to get her back between the shafts and show her some in the spring, then breed her like before and pull her from the show string mid-year just like last time. It worked out great. It will depend on Dylan's show schedule though! He's still the biggest priority at the moment.

Cregga June:

1) Continue learning about leading, brushing, feet handling, bathing, and clipping!
Success! It's mostly just a continuing process.

2) Finalize registration papers - if the stuff ever gets here...
Success! She has been microchipped and her DNA hair samples have been sent off. Now, we just wait....

3) Learn a bit more about walking/trotting in hand and standing still, like she would need to do for a show
Success! I was starting to do this with the idea that I might take her to Nationals. More thought put into this has made me decide not to pursue it this year. She'll be 8 months old at the time of Nationals, and god knows 8 month old babies can be REALLY ugly. It's also a time when their immune systems are still super vulnerable. It's probably just not worth the risk. She does trot in hand now though!

Dylan June:

1) Regular lessons and clinics! Both dressage and WE!
Success! I lessoned/cliniced with Tiago and Louisa in July, and just did another one with Tarrin on Friday, which I will be writing about.

2) Continue working on pirouettes and 4-tempis as usual
Success! The pirouettes to the left are really coming on nicely. The better I sit, the better it goes. To the right, not so great but they're coming. The tempis are actually coming along a lot better than before, since I put him back in the double. The double seems to give me a level of finesse that I struggled with in the snaffle - where I can really get him straight and accurate at the same time. In the snaffle, it's sometimes one or the other and he can be strong and bargey when he thinks he knows what's coming. We are - *gulp* - going to attempt 4-1 at the end of the month and see how much of a disaster it is. In 4-1, there are no pirouettes and three flying changes of lead in a row that aren't technically tempis even though they unofficially are.

3) Compete in the Haras summer show... as a prep for the actual Haras Cup!!
Well that was a bust... but only because the show got cancelled! Ohhhh well! The next Haras B-rated show is the same weekend as the Pete Ramey clinic which I will be attending.

4) Ride in a clinic with Tiago Ernesto!
Success! I wrote up about it here. 

Frank June:

1) Pony some babies - maybe! Trails if it's not too hot!
We did hit the trails! I will be writing out our last trail adventure together. I'm heartbroken that there will be no more of them. He was so, so good on our final one and it's so weird to think there will be no more.

Pangea/Pax/Uma June:

1) Grooming/trimming every 2 weeks 
Success! Babies are all doing well, aside from Uma getting injured on the 4th of July. Crap, another thing to write about....

Zu June:

1) Go off property with Dylan for lessons
I've been debating about this one, because I WANT to do it but I don't fully trust the two of them together in the trailer. They're both very aggressively male sometimes, even though Zoodle is gelded, and I can see a fight breaking out if they get a little too close. It's hard to trailer anywhere in company when you have a stallion. Not sure what to do about it either except for take Zoodle separately.

2) Lunging with harness
Success! And we did a little bit of long lining too!

3) Wearing bridle
Success! I have a full bridle I need to put on him now too, since the baby bridle is just a strap of leather with a bit attached. He flipped his tongue over the bit when we were long lining - tongues really seem to be a problem with these mules, I've had trouble with both him and Sriracha doing that and never once have I ever had a problem with a horse baby doing it - but raising the bit way too high helped stop it. Still, it's not ideal. 

Sriracha June:

1) Lunging - walk and trot
2) Wearing bridle
3) Wearing harness
I fully admit I did absolutely nothing with Sriracha this past month. She got her halter off in the beginning of the month and that little creep has not let me catch her since. What I need to do is put some panels into the pasture and run her into them, then get her catch halter back on, then start over. She's so great once she's caught, but my god you can NOT catch her if she doesn't want to be caught. Little stinker... she definitely has lived up to her name! She'll be an awesome driving mule but man she is not all that fond of humans. Not like Uma and Zoodle, anyway. 


O-Ren August:
1) Continue being a good momma horse!

Cregga August:
1) Continue learning about leading, brushing, feet handling, bathing, and clipping!

Dylan August:
1) Regular lessons and clinics! Both dressage and WE!
2) Continue working on pirouettes and 4-tempis as usual
3) Compete in the HDS Laborious Day I and II shows at the end of the month 
4) Get two more All Breed Awards scores for Third Level... and *gulp* try 4-1 for the first time!

Pangea/Pax/Uma August:
1) Grooming/trimming every 2 weeks 
2) Uma: Start to do a bit more learning about lunging!

Zu July:
1) More long lining! If I have help! 
2) Lunging with harness
3) Wearing bridle - full bridle with noseband

Sriracha July:
1) Lunging - walk and trot
2) Wearing bridle
3) Wearing harness
4) All of course contingent on catching her feral little ass again!


I have a plan for the rest of show season. At the end of August is the HDS Laborious Day shows I and II, which gives me two chances to get more scores at 3rd level for All Breed Awards. I'm also going to *gulp* attempt 4-1 at each. We're ready for it but not for 4-1 or 4-3 yet. The pirouettes are coming along fine but I can't always reliable count in the tempis. That's the last thing that really needs some hard work.

The reason why I wanted to get out and try 4-1 is because there is a lingering question of IALHA Nationals. I've been griping about it for awhile now - they used to have a super saver fee for the little guys, where you paid a flat fee and then got to show in as many classes as you wanted. That made Nationals affordable. Now they did away with the super saver, and it's just per class. It's VERY expensive - you're over the super saver money limit in just four classes. People could show in a dozen or more classes before.
So, I wasn't going to go. IALHA awards don't mean a ton to me as the organization is really separate from my real interests. They also did away with working equitation at Nationals this year, which made a lot of people really upset. They had their reasons but I didn't think they were great ones.

What's interesting about Nationals is that they're held in Katy, and they start one day after Regionals and SW Championships are held, which are also in Katy and which I am definitely attending. They're held at the same facility. Literally I would already be there. I am definitely going to Regionals/SW Champs, which are all held together in one show. Most likely, I will just show in the Regionals class and the SW Champs class, so that I can go easy and just focus on those and not have to worry about other classes. Do we stand a chance of winning anything? Absolutely not but we might place! A top 10 finish and a score I feel good about would be great for me.

So I had an idea. The dressage classes for Nationals are held on the opening day of the show, Tuesday the 10th. Regionals ends the 8th. I had a hairbrained idea. I'm already qualified for Nationals at 3rd level, which is easy to do - you just need a 58% for a test at your level. So, technically, if I manage a 58% or better at 4th at the Laborious Day show, I could show both 3rd and 4th at Nationals on that same Tuesday to make it worth my while. On my day in between, I could take Dylan to the famous Galveston beaches and go for an amazing ocean ride.

Sounds like a super amazing fun times vacation to me.

It will depend, of course, on how well the Laborious Day shows go.

And of course, the biggest thing to me is Haras Cup, at the end of October. THAT is my biggest goal of the year.

So. One show at the end of this month, nothing in September, Regionals/SW Champs and Nationals and Haras Cup in October, then two small WE shows in November, then we get MARRIED, then one final WE show in December, then he goes on rest through Christmas! Man this year is crazy. But it's worth it, every second of it.

Pax and Frank


  1. I am so intrigued to know how long it takes for you to get Cregga's papers 😋 I think skipping Nationals with her is probably the right call... And maybe now you can sweep the dressage classes with Dylan!

  2. Frank really did have the best head. Giant and cuddly.

  3. Much success for you on your goals - way to get it !!

  4. Oh Pax, Frank ain't havin' none of your temper nor shenanigans! Look at that side-eye. He was such a wise, strong, kind old man. I imagine he taught your herd a lot before he passed on.