Welcome to my blog about horsey life in the North East - the good bits, bad bits, endless coffees and plenty of mud!

Sunday, 29 December 2013

Happy New Year

Not long now till 2014 clicks in and I hope you've all had a lovely Christmas time. The horses and myself are all well and collectively we wish you all the best for the New Year. When the dust settles we shall return to bore you further with our plans for the future.

Meanwhile, here are a couple of pics of Rodney and I dusting off the cobwebs.

Happy horsing everyone - have a good one x

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Calming chamomile and cantering

Just a quick post:

Someone mentioned the other day they give their mad mare a sachet of chamomile tea leaves in her feed for a calming effect.

Willing to try anything I fished some out of the back of the kitchen cupboard for Cady and swirled them hopefully into her sugarbeet.

Sadly, when I arrived at the field she trotted to the gate and then galloped off snorting when the dog stepped on a twig. I did try and catch her but she was overcome with the terror of it all so I decided she couldn't be that hungry and left her to it.

You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make them eat chamomile tea...

On the plus side I had a charming ride on Rodney. We did some work without stirrups and then canter transitions and he was just a pleasure. Our canter work is still massively haphazard but there's progress there and it's the most fun I've ever had in an arena. 

Happy horsing everyone x

Monday, 16 December 2013

Fun :)

The Christmas spirit is so strong this year it has acted as a flamethrower to my usual Health and Safety concerns. Meaning silly ideas are entering the 'Can we do this?' Inbox ... before shooting into the 'F*ck it ! Why not?' basket.

On Sunday I had a go at riding Rodney and leading Cady at the same time. The hope is that I can take her around the farm in this manner and let Rodney's sensible, level-headed approach rub off on her. I expected it to be a disaster but it actually worked very well. Though at one point a horse grazing in the field next to the track got really excited and belted over and Cady had a little gallop on the spot. Rodney, as always, was a saint, and we all survived unmaimed.

Here he is - so beautiful I could evaporate...

Clearly have overdone the Photoshop here...
but this is what colour he is in real life -crap camera just refuses to play

We've also been having a go at mounting from the offside, riding with one hand and bending around cones, slowly and at speed. And my fabulous Gingella nut just rolls his eyes to the heavens and lets me do it. I LOVE THIS HORSE! 

Here's Cady pulling a face...(I love her too, but not because we ever achieve anything, just because she's my one and only bad penny.)

Raaaa! Gizza carrot ma !

This winter I'm going to try and win her over. If everything goes quiet on this blog then I'm failing. But to cheer me up there is always Nancy noodle, who loves our outdoor life together. She is such good company and a right little nitwit. Her favourite pastime is doing the wall of death around the haylage bale.

It seems to me that the weather is too temperamental to stick to rigid fitness plans so instead I'm trying to get the team emotionally fit - which is a posh way of saying that I want them to be able to handle walking, trotting, cantering, jumping, rein back, tractors, plastic bag etc etc with me on top and without having a meltdown.

Wish me luck and I hope you're all having fun with your chargers!

Happy horsing x

Friday, 13 December 2013

Well hello now

It's been a good week... my car brakes failed, I got held up coming to work this morning and a sucky bill I thought I might be exempt from - nope, I have to pay it.

But hand on heart and irony free, it's been a good week, backing up my personal theory that mood and circumstances aren't as closely linked as you might think.

As the temperatures have fallen, my will to ride has gone on holiday for a bit. I've probably clocked up more time in the saddle this year than any other in living memory so it feels right to have a rest for a bit while I get organised for Christmas.

That said I've hacked out a couple of times on a borrowed horse (lovely 16.2hh, bay TB) and on Wednesday me and Rodney went for a swizzle around the arena. My intention was to do some gentle walk work but we ended up just generally playing about and showing off for the sheep in the field next door. We did zoomy canters and slooooow canters, rein back, leg yielding and serpentines as the light faded. 

What a good horse he is - handsome and willing and a brilliant teacher. Definitely the kind of horse who comes along but once in a lifetime. Much in the way that Nancy has made me a full convert to lurchers as family dogs, Rodney is a superb spokesman for the mighty Welshie. 

In terms of new pics - fail! Phil's camera has no memory left and the batteries have given up on mine so I must endeavour to sort this out and get some cute Christmas pics to share. Perhaps that can be the mission for this weekend.

But for anyone wanting a Nancy fix, here she is being very beautiful.

I've done nothing much with Cady either, other than keeping her warm and well fed and picking her feet out. She looks very sweet and fuzzy at the moment (as does Rodney) - I forgot how much I love the look and feel of their luxurious winter coats. 

I hope you are all enjoying the time of year and your horses - whether through riding or tucking them in at night.

Happy horsing x 

Friday, 6 December 2013

Just checking in

Apols all round for being such a lazy toad lately. Blogland fun time is currently being sacrificed to my efforts to be warm and busy this winter, which means lots of riding and not much time to write about it.

I was due to take Rodney jumping at West Park a few weeks ago when they opened their new arena, but the Saturday beforehand he felt slightly off when I rode and when I lunged him on the hard flat there was a distinct head nod. I think he must have slipped in the field or I'd overdone it in our schooling/jumping/hacking...

A week off and he's fine again and we're fitting in rides wherever we can. We had some lovely canter work on Wednesday which was very cheering. I'm hoping to lure Phil down soon to get some fresh pics as I've had nothing new to use for ages and he feels like he's working well (Rodney, not Phil, though Phil works very hard too lol!) and we've glued together more (Still talking about Rodney). 

Cady trotted across the field in a straight-ish line the other day and looked sound so I lunged her and touch wood she seems ok on that left circle now so I want to get her back in work. I think the abscess she had in that near left must have left her quite bruised/irritated and has taken a lot of time to feel better.

The prospect of getting her back in work is both good and bad. We have too much history but like a sucker I'm also excited to see how high I can get my hopes before she crushes them into the arena sand ;)

With all this lameness several friends have stepped in and let me ride their horses over the past month. For which I am very, very grateful. Riding my own is great but variety keeps your brain hula-hooping.

Happy horsing everyone x