Sunday, August 29, 2010

My Main Man Mac

has been on the back burner for a while hasn't he?! 2 mths of very wet weather meant he didn't even get much groundwork, but I've pulled him out of the paddock lately and we're getting some groundwork under his belt again. He had one wee instance of testing who was boss, (gosh I love that dork!) but he's settled into the groundwork again well, still worried when I get into a position to mount him (not that I'm going to, just setting him up for success as he needs to have done, and desensitizing him again as it's being mounted that is his "issue") so still a bit of work to do but I am missing riding him, and he is finally getting bored in the paddock (he obviously needed a bit of a holiday!) I have promised him I'll take him jumping again too :o) He is looking forward to being ridden again, but he worries, about hurting me, about his reactions that he can't stop, of course that worry of his tenses him up and takes him that much closer to that breaking point where brain shuts down and he just reacts, so a bit of a catch 22 with him at times, but we'll get there again and soon! Before all that spring grass kicks in too much!

I just found a photo of him very recently uploaded onto our local photographers site when I was spotting the trail ride photo's of Smokey, so had to get it!

This was Mac at our 2009 winter dressage, he was doing level 3. What a handsome devil he is!

Pet Expo in Auckland is Drawing Close!

Just a reminder to all Aucklander's I'll be at the Pet Expo on the 18th and 19th of September. It runs from 10am-5pm Sat and Sunday at the Nth Shore Event Centre.

Adults entry is $10, Children under 5 are free.

I'll be at a stand with Jeanne Northwood from Energy Works, an energy healer, and Niki Wright-Jackman will be spending a wee bit of time with us too, Niki has just recently started up communicating with cats and is doing some great work with them :o)

I will have 'Pet Expo Specials' on vouchers for consultations and Himalayan Crystal Salt.

I will be there for the week leading up to the Expo too and available to do some consultations while I'm there.

Well Smokey has been busy!

Since the last post (gosh that was a while ago, where has the time gone?!) Smokes has done another Show Hunter day and his first competitive trail ride.
Show Hunter first :o) I thought the heights were 55cm, 65cm etc, but got there and found out it's 50, 60, 70cm etc so since Smokey hadn't seen ANY jumps since the ODE over a month prior I thought we'd just do the 50 and 60cm rounds (he'd done 65cm at the ODE) so entered him for those and decided to let him choose if he wanted to pick up a canter into the jumps etc (last lesson before the ODE was all just trot approaches) and he did a very nice 50cm round. The 60cm round unfortunately I was distracted by asking hubby to keep photographing the rider following me, turned away from him and lined up and jumped the last jump as jump #1 so was eliminated. He was jumping VERY nicely and I asked two of the organisers on the side line if they thought he looked like he'd do the 70cm OK (he was clearing everything with plenty of room!) and they were very much in agreeance that he'd do it no problems so we entered the 70cm round too. A little off in some of the striding for them, but cleared them all no hesitation at all, very very happy with the boy! And he won the 50cm round! Go Smokester!

Here is the only still photo I have of him jumping 70cm and it had to be taken off a vid clip as hubby had the camera on video mode by accident LOL. All the rest of the photos were completely mistimed and he didn't actually have the video camera running :o(

It's the first jump. The Flying Smokey LOL, a little out on the striding!
Last weekend was his first trail ride, just a 15km ride, he had a starting heart rate of 32, we had to push the end of the ride a little more than we wanted to make the time so his finish rate was 51, and final heart rate was 37. We came in 30 seconds under time and Smokey won!!! Was a GREAT ride, we had a gallop through the vineyard, and just had a ball. Very proud of his attitude throughout the entire ride :o)

oh yeah, the finish line!!!!
something about seeing Tracey the photographer there was obviously hilarious!
tidy your hair up there Smokey, the camera is out!aaaaaaaaw, I'm as proud as you are my wee dude, I luff you!
and here is the video of Smokey's winning round at Show Hunter :o) Jumps look so weeny!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

It is so nice to see respect develop

Marcus now not only respects the dogs (altho he still delights in making Phoenix move because he knows she will) but he (apparently) now Loves the dogs too. He's always loved the chickens, "hey girls, hey cutie, I love you, thanks for the eggs, how are you?" etc etc non stop LOL, but the dogs is a new thing, because they've been here longer than he has and inside with him a lot of the time, the young child who had no siblings delighted in harassing them just to get a rise from them. However now he treats them more like he does the chickens which is so lovely to see. Zak the baby lover has been waiting a looooooooooong time for this and will now accept touching and cuddles from Marcus without the warning growls :o)

and just because Leo would be so embarrassed by this one hehehe

And a lovely farm ride with Smokey today, a solid 3 hours, up hill and down dale, in fact up so many steep hills all in one go he gave up and had to walk half of them poor poppet, when I even said to him "come on we'll do a trot up here" his breathing would get so laboured just thinking about a trot I'd give up and tell him to just keep walking! Still by the time we got back 3 hours later, he was recovered and enjoyed a cruisey canter along the nice flat raceway...

Me and my shadow...

Monday, August 2, 2010

Oh! and an update on a tree!

Talking about plants "talking" elsewhere and it reminded me!

I was up picking up horse poo the other day, up around the gum tree I'd transplanted up by the roadside. It was a year or 2 old when I asked hubby to dig it out from where it was so I could shift it (property plan had changed a little!) Pete
dug it up but busted the roots up pretty well, knocking off the tap root, figured it wouldn't live so chucked it in the garage to take to the dump. I rescued it and transplanted it to where another baby gum tree had been planted and then pulled out and chewed up by Mac!

I asked the tree what it wanted/needed in order to keep living... it had been scared of being eaten like the last one so all it wanted was me to promise to keep it safe from the horses. I put a drum over it and then taped that corner off completely so the horses couldn't reach it at all. It was touch and go for a while, leaves dried up and went brownish, took it some water over summer, gave it some energy "healing" when I was up there in that first wee while, and gave it lots of pep talks.

That was perhaps 2 yrs ago now. The drum came off it last year and when I was up there the other day I untaped the corner. The horses now wouldn't be able to reach the top branches/leaves anyway and now it's not so teeny it won't taste good. I just checked in with it, not to ask it anything in particular, just to feel it, and make sure it wasn't screaming in fear with the horse eating the grass around it, and it felt like an adolescent!

Really strange to feel that young maturity there, where it had been nothing but fear and pain when I first spoke with it :o)

Is it Spring already?!

We've been having glorious days, frosty starts but warming up to T-shirt weather, the promise of Spring just around the corner is in the nesting birds (love the sound of Magpies calling!)

My mini arena (square pen LOL) has the crusher dust spread in it, just need to string line the tyres around the sides and fill them all with poo and rocks (good way to get rid of both!) so they don't walk off across the paddock but Smokey and I have been using it last week getting ready for Dressage yesterday.

He is feeling a wee bit insecure about his floating at the moment and is happy to follow me on but not keen on self loading, but we'll get it back again. He's been very smoochy in the paddock for the last week or so too, and a bit of a spring in his step when being ridden. Warmed him up at the dressage yesterday and he was lovely :o) Soft contact, forward, not Olympic standard by any means, but a step up on how he has been going so very happy with him.

He got a 61.53% in his first test which put him 5th, and a 60% in his 2nd test (another 5th!) and I was very happy particularly as the 2nd test (1.6) is pretty much a level 2 test and had HEAPS of canter in it which Smokes needs a lot of work on yet! AND they were decent size classes so he was in the top 3rd for both tests :o) Of course to top off the day it was the guys official birthday so Smokey was celebrating his "official" 5th birthday.

It was a rainy windy day and I was rapt with his work and attitudes, very very proud mummy :o)To top off a lovely day when I got home and checked the chickens I had 12 eggs from 15 girls to greet me, the most ever! You go Girls!!!! (what the heck am I going to do with all these eggs?! Any bright spark got some good ideas for someone who hates the kitchen, cooking and baking! LOL)

Now need to get another jumping lesson or 2 in as we have another Show Hunter on the 15th, see if we can canter a round this time instead of trot it LOL.