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Dressage Chit Chat Thread! Volume 20!!!

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thanks beckham. that makes me feel better. hee hee. yeah... i almost showed roany as "nightmare" one year!!

ah well....

i'm seriously going to get a **** chicken though. or a rooster! something!!

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Holly, aw Holly...do you remember one little jumper derby where another (night)mare was eliminated on THE FIRST FENCE during XC???? Hmmm I do. It looked a little bit like this:

So Holly, we are not going to let you beat yourself up! Which it sounds like you've already got it mostly under control. It was your first time out at recognized Training, which can be really hard. So you did just fine and you got over some pretty scary stuff and schooled the heck out of it on Sunday! So next time, you'll be so ready that you'll knock everyone's socks off!

And hunny, we wouldn't EVER get a bad taste of Fleck in our mouths - we love the boy!

[Huggy][Huggy][Huggy]

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Vegas, hope you figure out something with yourself soon.

Yeah, Beau has to have things just right!! [big Grin] It is freezing cold, wet rainy today, so I only longed him in side reins. He was quite good. I can see such a huge difference in him compared to longing last summer. He bends now and steps into the outside side rein and does his transitions very nicely.

3day, the Scott Hassler clinic sounds just right for you. Our spring break is not till the week of the 17th. But I get to start it off with a schooling show and my 1st level debut!!

Holly, have not had time to read your post on your show yet. Going to do that now. Oh and my Golden has a low thyroid, hence the seizures. He is on meds now and wow, what a difference in him. He wants to chase his ball again. He hasn't wanted to do that in a very long time!

Good night all. Tomorrows Friday, yeah!! How about this crazy presidential election? Don't know why I threw that in? [Crazy]

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megan: thanks! i do remember that now... course it still doesn't help my pride any. but that's okay. like i said... i've regrouped and am going to get back in gear and fix it [smile] and fleck is so lucky to have such a nice fan club [smile] he is yummy isn't he?!

how are things going for you? did you try driving yet?! [Wink] hope you get it worked out soon. hows the vegas girl feeling? at the show there was a horse named "vegas showgirl" and it made me think of you guys.

boocoo: good luck at your show. you guys are gonna rock it! you're so ready. just don't let the nerves ...or ducks! do you in! oooh, so glad you guys figured it out with your golden! i always forget that low thyroid levels can cause so many issues! it's not really an "emergency" kinda thing, but i should remember that in my rule outs and recommend that people test their pets for it. glad he's doing better! how's the beagle working out? still the best of friends?

hee hee. i'm not even going to answer the pres. question! only to say that hilary was on the daily show and it was kinda funny. john asked her why? and she responded with..."yeah, it is kinda pathetic isn't it?! or something to that effect. [big Grin]

okay, so that was my feeble attempt at getting back in the chit chat game! good thing i didn't have that many people in between my last post!!

anyways.... hope everyone is doing well.

lauren: good luck at the clinic. hope you have forgiven yourself and figured things out with the boy.

beckham: hope the weather improves...

hope all is well for everyone! it's a rainy day again today so it looks like no riding for me. but oh well. i'll just start over again on sunday hopefully. then ride wed and then thursday... i'm so excited [smile] i really should have ridden more in between but oh well. can only ride so much with work and weather. but anyways... me and three friends (one being my trainer too) are going to aiken for a girls weekend. we're going to sleep in our trailers and ride at the national park, school XC, get a XC lesson, and hopefully a dressage lesson too, eat, and shop, and chat away. i can't wait [smile]

have a great weekend!!!

holly

oh, ps... the pro shots from the show are up. check them out... you can see how SCOPEY my pony is... he took a huge table pretty much at a 45 degree angle. it's on page 2 of our pics. www.hoofclix.com and go to the ark, the first ark one, and then rider number 41.

chow!

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I really HAVE been lurking on the boards the past few weeks. Between school and a couple personal issues I'm working through, I have been spending less time on the horse sites lately. In some ways, I think I am continuing to "grow up" in spite of my 30+ current age. [smile] It's little things, like realizing I can drink a little socially without turning into someone unrecognizable. Or maybe not so little -- as a teenager, I remember being afraid to drink. Partly, it was that I didn't like the taste or sensation of beer or wine. But also, I was afraid of losing control or ending up in a compromising position. And I was afraid that I would like it too much! Watch me read a favorite book and ten try to tell me I don't have an addictive personality! I'm also exploring some identity issues and developing some friendships. Good things, but it takes some emotional and mental work. I choose to think that these explorations reflect an improvement in mental and emotional health.

Fessor and I are getting back into regular work after a couple months off this winter. His muscling is already starting to improve, especially in the hind quarters. And his coordination and canter quality are MUCH better. [big Grin] So I'm a happy, if occasionally sore, camper. During last week's lesson, I noticed I was really wanting to brace against my stirrups and that I was very tight in my thighs and hips. So last weekend, I took the stirrups off my saddle. And on Tuesday, I left the stirrups off my saddle for our lesson. Of course, this was one of the trainer's "drill sargeant mode" days. So I had a very intense, and very satisfying lesson. Oh, and I found a new talent during the lesson. I can brace against my stirrups, even when they aren't on the saddle! [Confused][surrender] And I lost count of how many times I heard "relax your ankles, let go of your ankles." I could at least feel when I was gripping with the thighs at the canter. I couldn't always make myself let go right away, but I could feel the difference. I must always have tense ankles, because I really couldn't feel the stiffness or figure out how to let go. Oh well, I'll figure it out one of these days... We worked all three gaits w/o stirrups, including a big swinging lengthened trot.

Do you see the common theme? I have a hard time letting go, physically and mentally! Apparently I like the illusion of feeling in control and have a hard time just letting myself be.

School's ok. I'm ready to be done though. At least spring break is coming up in a bit over a week. Maybe THIS vacation I'll get the mess in my apartment under control and my space organized... But don't hold your breath -- I haven't managed that yet! There's a schooling show the end of the month that I would love to go to, but we have an h/j show the next day. It's unlikely we can borrow a trailer for both days. Likely my first show with Fessor this year will be the end of April. That will be a "ride a test" clinic on Saturday then the actual competetion on Sunday. I need to check the h/j show schedule -- hopefully I can fit this show in! Anyone want to fix the lottery for me? Then I can buy my OWN trailer and a truck to haul it with. [smile]

Tracy

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Holly-I love the pro pics. Those are huge fences!!! YIKES! I think I would have a heart attack:-) See, you should be proud of yourself!

Boo-Can I come live with you in the winter so I can ride? This sucks. I would have to say that I hate the cold so much anymore that I might not ride much more even if I had an indoor:-) Shelby is goofy about the weather too and if I had an indoor with high winds or snow sliding off she would be a goober.

Tracy-Glad to see you are back and getting back to riding! Riding always makes us feel better.

Well, we had some decent weather this week and I got to do a little bit. So I am supposed to be packing Shelby up to go to the trainers in the morning and we are in the middle of a snow storm!!!! Calling for 10+ inches of snow by tomorrow afternoon. Sooooo, winter hates me so I will try to get her down there Monday or something. I really am against putting us all in danger on these roads. People in Ohio really freak out over snow and can't drive:-)

So, I have three days off of work and it is not going as planned.

Happy friday everyone!!

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Just chillin between a break in my classes...what to do what to do...homework? Surely not - horsecity!

Holly: WHAT?!?! Another horse named Vegas?? Not allowed! Only my baby girl is that cool...hahaha except the horse on the cover of my new Dover catalog is totally Vegas too. Oh well, I guess everyone wants to be as cool as me [big Grin]

Tracy: You know, that's something that I realize as I get older too. Sure, I'm only 19, but in some ways my emotional maturity is that of a 40 year old, but in others we're still working at a preschool level. Some people just need time to work it out I guess. And I totally hear you on the drinking thing...aside from my religious convictions of drinking, I stay away from it all together just because I don't want to lose control. The control I've built over my life is something that I value. And that too creates problems, where emotionally or mentally I might not be able to be in complete control, or where I have to give up a piece of myself or somehow make myself vulnerable to other people - I just can't do it. And taking that back to the control thing, I have a very hard time letting people see my emotion - even extreme excitement I tend to keep under check, and any negative emotions are kept waaaaay under the surface. So one of my main outlets for all that emotion becomes physical - my muscles tense, I ball it up in my gut, and I just get all tight, then just like you, I can't let it go. Maybe it's because I haven't found a good way yet. I mean there will be times where I don't particularly feel stressed or any negative emotions, yet I find myself tense as all get out, pacing around in a frantic mess. One of the best ways so far that I've found to deal with it is to go running for a while, or go out to the barn and work for an hour, then ride when I've calmed down a little...I guess what I'm getting at with all my rambling is that I definitely know where you are coming from, and I think it's just great that you're taking the time for yourself to just figure it out now and really get yourself in order. Just remember, take baby steps - don't try to let go of too much at one time or you're liable to really end up in a spot! [Huggy]

Shelby: [ROTFL] You think people in Ohio freak about snow and ice?! Here in the valley schools will close the night before if there's even a forecast of more than an inch! Anything over an inch on the ground and people just F.R.E.A.K. Schools are closed, businesses are closed, and people are advised to stay home at all costs. We're just waiting for FEMA to come shovel our driveways...Well I hope it clears up soon and you can get Miss Shelby to the trainer safe and sound!

Not a whole lot new here, Pony keeps getting better, a little bit more each day. I got to drive for the first time in almost two weeks yesterday...I've noticed a circadian pattern to these supposed seizure thingys, so I can avoid dangerous things during those times. Otherwise I feel fine fresh and happy, just waiting for more testing. OOOHHHHH!!!! I was offered a job yesterday too! A vet in our area comes to speak to our Pony Club once a month on various topics - he knows I'm pre-vet, and he said that he'll need some help during the summer if I'm not doing anything. I was like YES!! HIRE ME NOW!

Oh, did I tell you guys that I'm moving out? During spring break I'm moving in with my two cousins who are my dad's brother's daughters, so they're like my sisters...it's a small house out in the quiet sticks, so hopefully during the summer I'll be able to put up some fence in the field and take my girls with me!

Okay, break's almost over, gotta go to class - one more week before finals!

Have a GREAT day everyone!!!

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Just an update...the weather here is crap. On the way back from the barn this morning I spun my car out, ended up sliding across the road, spinning and the back end of my car went in the ditch! And, I have NEVER had any kind of accident...just hit a slick spot. I was heading right for some mail boxes and missed them, but was blocking the road. My parents came along and were like, call AAA. (I was hoping they would pull me out, no luck there.) So I did and while I was waiting a kid in a jeep came up and said he could pull me out. Said he does mud running and no big deal. Well, it wasn't and he had me out in like a second. My car is not damaged at all, I was just a little wigged out. I called AAA back and cancelled the call and went home. (It is 3 miles from my condo to the barn.) So no, Shelby will be waiting a few days!!!

Funny thing is that they did not jump the gun and cancel school today, but they were all closing early. I was near a drive way and the lady came out to see if I was okay...she said she was stressed because she was a bus driver and was leaving to pick up kids.

Okay, we are going to head back out to the barn. We are supposed to get another 6 inches overnight.

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Boocoo- Hopefully I'll get into the Scott Hassler clinic! *crosses fingers* That's exciting that your 1st level debut is coming up! Can't wait to hear how it goes? Have you ridden through the tests? If so, how are they flowing for you and Beau?

Holly- Yeh...it's a been a horrid week for me. I offically broke it off w/ Jeremy. Ugh. I feel like a big smuck but it is not fair to have him wait around for me when I think that a month isn't enough time. He was a wreck this past weekend...I was told that he is drinking a ton...not sleeping very well and not eating a lot. UGH. I feel absolutely horrible...and I do miss him. He really is a good guy, but my feelings are so out of whack that I can't have myself stay with him...and then who knows I bury my coldfeet emotions and end up really cheating on him. That is not fair to him...I think its best the way we are going at this point. Anyways a weekend in Aiken sounds like a blast!! Wish I was closer...you need to go to Hitchcock woods! GOOO That's place is amazing and you can jump the steeplechase fences. So much fun! Awh Fleck looks snazzy jump those fences WOOHOO!! You 2 look smashing, darlin...smashing! Wow...what the heck is up w/ The Ark fences? Was that an almost maxed course? Odd as its the beginning of the season...

TracyA- it is hard letting go...absolutely. Sounds like things are starting to smooth out for you. When's your Spring Break?

Beckham- YIKES! Sounds scarey but glad you are ok!

Megan- glad to hear Vegas is getting better! Good news! Congrats on the job offering it would be great experience for you to take it! Woohoo moving out!!! another learning experience! God I want to move out so bad...but my ponyboy's board and my rent would put me over the top. Hopefully my last semester I can finally move out of my mom's house and actually live w/out having someone squaking in my ear. Did I mention I'm 22? LOL jeebas ya think I was like 14 the way she asks questions and all that shebang. Ok sorry about that part LOL cann't wait to hear how the moving/living siutation treats you!

Bad week for me....just crazy and stressful. But I have spring break! so I can unwind and whatnot. Hopefully a few girls and I are going out tomorrow night. I could use a few drinks right about now! So that will hopefully be fun! My dressage saddle came back and its no longer pressing on Scotch's spine...but she move a billet...and now it's starting to hike forward....so I have a feeling i'm going to have to send it back to get that problem fixed. Scotch has been feeling good. Had a lesson this past Monday...I was discombulated and just not on top of the game...but overall it was a good lesson and he had some lovely trotwork. I need to get this pony rolling again and confirmed 1st level...especially since we lost a year.

Have a good weekend all!

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Holly, I saw that on the daily show when Hilary said, yeah kind of pathetic. That was a scream!! [big Grin] The golden goes back tomorrow for a blood work to make sure the RX is right. The beagle is still great. I loff that little dog.

Beckham I hate ice and snow. I don't know how you do it? You can come down here. We have lots of room and ride year round. We think it's bad when we get any rain. We actually had snow this a.m.!! It didn't stick though, thank goodness.

Lauren, just hang in there. It will get better. I know you feel bad for Jeremy, but it's better not to lead someone on!

Not much going on this weekend. I just plan to ride and ride and then ride!!! [Cool] Oh yeah, and maybe do some laundry!!!

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Lots of fun snow here!!! Over a foot so far, so no, Shelby isn't going anywhere for a few days:-) I thought you all might like to laugh at some pics of all this snow:

These are from 7am, I'll get more if and when I can make it to the barn:

http://gallery.guilfoos.com/v/Winter+Storm+08/

And, I finally had time to upload the ones of what Winston and Beckham have done to my ground poles this winter:

http://gallery.guilfoos.com/v/Winston/Winter+08/

Have fun laughing at us idiots that live in these cold areas...YUCK!!!

ETA: We made it to the barn but couldn't get in the driveway, we had to pull in someone else's and walk down the road...(you'll see in the pictures.) They are saying this is a record snowfall for us...me measured 16 inches since yesterday (it was 45 out on Thursday) and my mom measured 19. The dogs and horses are loving it though!

[ 03-08-2008, 07:23 PM: Message edited by: Beckham03 ]

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I've been a really, really bad chit-chatter [Embarrassed] I deserve to be beaten by the rest of you good chit-chatters, but I'm back, if you'll let me back in. [bat Eyelashes] I read everything! Just the typing bit got away from me. OK I've pleaded my case, it's up to the jury to decide! [Jump]

I've been really busy lately. Working, I got the first package for my online course, and have to start that soon, really soon.

Private lessons are awesometastic. Seriously. LOL. I'm having so much fun and it's like a trillion times better. I have to fix my left hand, the fact Lightning loses his drive and I end up looking for him with my leg, making my heels do funky things, annnd oh yeah, my contact lmao. But it's getting better! I got mum to video my last lesson so I can watch it over and over [Razz] It's not good enough to share but it's better than before [big Grin]

Oh and I'm making an effort to get my licence so I can drive myself. It's scary though cause I've had 2 people run into me on my learner's licence and it makes me nervous. I wasn't that confident in the first place, but when you can't stop at a stop sign or a red light without someone running up your rear end.. well... it doesn't help.

Anyway, I vow to be a more reliable chit chatter hereafter.

Hope everyone has a good day/night/whatever time it is there!

[ 03-11-2008, 04:15 AM: Message edited by: O- -O Lightning Strikes Twice O- -O ]

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Geezle I've never seen the thread so far down on the list!! I shall revive it!!!

Not a whole lot new here...I've decided to stay in school for the next term...why not finish the year eh? But I'm taking 17 credits!! [Confused] I don't know why I do this. My only goal for this term though is to NOT drop any classes - I've never made it through a term without dropping or withdrawing.

So I had my (hopefully) last test yesterday, and I should get the results tomorrow. Don't know what it will show, but I've been having more of the episodes lately. I guess we'll see.

Vegas and Macy are just peachy, been riding Vegas lightly to keep her fresh, and she's really starting to feel better. Still a few weeks to go but we're getting there. And Macy is officially two!!! Her birthday was actually like the second or something but whatever.

Anyway, better run, I need to actually sleep tonight - finals are next week!

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Hi everyone--I've been away for awhile, lots of stuff going on, but I check back every now and then when I can.

Vegas--Wow. Lots of challenges for you, and I certainly hope you get some answers soon. As for Vegas v. a new horse, trust me, there's plenty of room in your heart for two. I see my old boy Pokey, ride him every so often, and watch him being ridden by the little girls who just love him and who he's teaching to ride. It's pure pleasure. As long as he's got a job, he's a happy horsie. Even though now he's got bar shoes and full pads on the front (some navicular stuff creeping up on the old guy). He and I had a great ride last night. So don't feel like you're abandoning her.

Boo--glad to see you and Beau are doing great. Hope your shows go well!

As for more personals, I'll try to do more later.

Jag is still for sale, but he's showing 2nd level now, and his rider, who's my trainer's assistant, just loves him. Once she gets her horse sold she'll buy him for sure. They get along great, and he gives her his best every time. He's still on dreamhorse and I don't know if there's a video up on him or not, but I know they're being sent out like crazy.

I've had some real personal setbacks lately. My husband went into a major depression back in January, and has been off work since then. I read Shantel's posts about her issues and it struck a nerve, but DH is quite a bit older than she is (61) and never had a problem before...but it's interesting to know what others have experienced.

Anyway, that has pretty much sucked the life out of me, as well as any free time, and I'm only just now getting back into some kind of my routine, like riding a couple of days a week. Once I get Jag sold I may be able to buy something else or I may not...it will depend on alot of things.

School and work have more or less kept me sane through all of this. I want to finish my MBA and move on into something more lucrative than where I am now, so the sooner that happens the better, and I won't stop that train unless I get hit by one [Wink]

Take care and I'll check back when I can.

DQ

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DQ, depression is tough! Tough to watch, and tough to live through. {{{Hugs}}} Best of luck with school! I'm glad you have someone riding Jag who works well with him. Hopefully her horse will sell soon.

There's not too much going on here. Spring break starts later today, and two of my three classes were rescheduled. So I only have the one class, and will officially be done at 1:45 this afternoon. [big Grin] We'll see if I get any cleaning and organizing done THIS break! What can I say? I tend to get caught up in good books and playing at the barn instead.

Fessor and I continue to improve. And we are continuing no stirrups work while I figure out where I tend to hold tension and LET GO! We got some nice round big connected trot in our lesson last Tuesday. I'm starting to get past the thought that big trots are hard to stay with, probably because I was smart enough to post the trot until Fessor was offering the round, elevated back before trying to sit it. Wow! Now if I can just mentally relax at the canter... We're getting there.

In a change of pace, I tossed the trainer's western show saddle yesterday. Boy, can Fessor jog! [big Grin] We'd need more work to slow the canter down to a true (3 beat!) lope. We got moments though. We must have looked a bit odd with the western saddle and our dressage bridle, but it was fun. Next time, I'll have to set up the barrels so we can trot that pattern. Have a good weekend, all!

Tracy

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DQ, nice to see you on the board. Hope your DH is doing better.

Where has everyone been? We seem to have all disappeared off the face of the earth?

I went to a show today and did my first level debut. I posted a seperate thread about it w/ pictures!!

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yeah.... the thread has sorta just......fizzled. i guess everyone is busy now that MAYBE the weather is cooperating a bit more...

i just got lazy. honestly... it's hard work to keep up with you guys. i used to be good about it but... now it's hard. so yeah... no excuses...just lazy.

and then i feel bad about not responding to everyone and just posting about me...cause although we all know that hollyland is a great place to be.... it's not just about me.

but anyways....nothing too exciting here for me...see, here i go... all about holly [Wink]

i'll post a link about my fun weekend-o-fun in aiken when i'm a little less lazy. or hyped up on hydrocodone...the flu and a migraine at the same time is only fun once it's kicked in. like now....uh oh...TUI!!! typing under the influence....see what happens... i better get off before you guys realize how wierd i really am and refuse to associate with me! [Crazy]

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Holly - Dear sweet Holly. If we were going to disown you because of weirdness, we would have already done so... and we'd have to disown 95% of the people on this thread as well. [Wink]

Boocoo - Yay! Woohoo for your successful 1st level debut! I posted there too!

Tracy - Yay! Spring break.

DQ - I'm sorry to hear about your hubby. I hope you all get back on track soon.

Megan - I'm glad Vegas is feeling better and Happy Birthday Macy! Pictures!!! Good for you, staying in school!

Anyway.. I changed my mind.. I thought I'd post my video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bFQCmiYje_w ( I edited out the completely horrible bits LOL) and see if you guys had any suggestions, I figure you guys are nice enough not to smush my confidence into the ground LOL... Remembering I'm right at the beginning this is "Learning to accept contact when rider actually has it", and I look like a fruitcake [big Grin] And it's funny with sound haha. You know how I need someone to yell at me to do something sometimes.... that happens right around 1:33... *snork*

Anyway I'm rambling away to myself now...

Hope you all have a good day/night/whatever time it is there!

[ 03-16-2008, 04:13 AM: Message edited by: O- -O Lightning Strikes Twice O- -O ]

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It is good to see some activity back on here...I was getting worried:-) And, some of you with good weather back out showing, that makes me very happy!!!

Holly-My dear Holly, we know you are a bit off, but I believe we all are! HAHAHAHAHA!! Anyway, I have this great idea to help Fleck with the duck problem. My arena is right next to a 2 acre pond and I usually have about 50 geese there at a time...come up and spend some time with me!!! In fact, they were noisy as all get out when I rode yesterday and my horses are pretty bird proof. In fact, last summer, my dad said that if any of my horses spook at birds they are in deep poop...so anyway, I have an extra stall, come on up to Ohio!!!

Lightning-That is the first video I have seen of you riding! He is cute! He is soooo steady in the bridle and see the tail swinging? He has some nice swing in his back. Honestly, he just needs to be a little more forward but I really like him!! What a nice boy!!

Shantel-Great job at the show! I posted on your thread!

Boo-Congrats to you too! I posted on your thread as well:-)

DQ-Good to hear from you! Do you have any recent photos? My family is full of depression...I know some other people on here have been through it too. I have as well. I stay on anxiety meds and went through some time with a therapist and that was 8 years ago and now I know what to do to when I feel it coming on...go ride, go for walks...anyway, it will get better and I know it is very hard.

Well, Spring has sprung a little here in Ohio. The massive snow has melted and I got Shelby back to the trainer's on Thursday and I start lessons this week. I got a great report back last night about how much progress she has made since the last time she was there. I also got to see my trainer's new Dutch Warm blood out of Sandro Hit she just imported...he is breath taking!

I also started riding Beckham more seriously. (I have only ridden bareback all winter.) He feels great. He had a few more months to grow up ( he will be 5 this year) and feels nice and strong. He was nice and forward and his canter feels like a different horse! He even cantered from a walk both ways...my little boy is growing up!

Well, I better go feed...busy week. My husband is in San Diego for the week so it is me and all of the animals and a crappy work schedule. Hopefully I will get some more work in on Beckham between rain. First schooling show is May 17-18. Have a great week everyone!

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Hmmm. I may end up riding at the H/J show in a couple weeks after all. Eli, the BIG young perch/morgan cross is going. His owner rides him in a few flat classes, and the trainer usually takes him in a few small hunter over fences classes. But, my trainer has a *very* sore shoulder, and we're not sure if it will be usable by then. So I may get to take Eli in the over fences classes. We jumped over a couple 2' verticals yesterday. How fun! Two years of dressage has managed to help fix my nasty habit of jumping ahead. [smile] Now I just need to remember to lower my hands a bit, especially in the air over the jump. If I go, I'll try to make sure that someone gets pics of me on the fancy, 18Hh gelding.

In the meantime, Fessor and I are improving. The more we do serious no strirrups work, the more I am starting to feel when my shoulders are facing outside the arena or that I'm sitting heavier on one side than the other. So I see a fair bit of lessons sans stirrups while I work on learning how to recognize and let go of tension and body awareness. Oh yes, and I'll also build the balance and core strength to sit the bigger gaits.

This afternoon, I'll probably go onto campus for the big Selection Show party. I'll be one of the Drake fans, complete with royal blue school sweatshirt, waiting to see where our team is seeded and playing in the big dance. Doors open at one, the women's conference championship game starts at two, and the selection show starts at five. The local CBS affiliate will have reporters there for at least part of the festivities. Why such a big deal you ask? This is the first time since 1971 that Drake men's team will be in the tournament, and they will probably be in with a 4 or 5 seed. Go Bulldogs! [Yay][Jump]

Tracy

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Holly, don't worry about not responding to everybody. We can't all, always do that. I always read everybody's posts and then just try and respond to a couple, what I can remember, usually, ha ha, then I post what I am up to. I think it's easier for us all to keep up that way.

I just read everyone's posts and that's all I can remember! It's the age thing, ya know? [big Grin]

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Yeh I did disappear for a few days....my life is still a bit crazy. Ugh men.

But today I went shopping...at the tack store. And I finally bought the Pikeur dressage coat I've been wanting for the last 2 yrs. This tack store was having a 20% off everything! Woopeee!! So I saved about a $100 on the coat! I also bought some bells, shampoo, white rockel show gloves, a pair of black gloves, a Rambo summer sheet (for shows), and finally got his halter plate on his halter. It's really cute...has On the Rocks in bold, bigger letters and then "Scotch" underneath. Can't wait to see what it looks like on him. So the checkbook gods are ANGRY at me. UGH. I'm really poor right now and I go and do THAT! Ah. Chiro coming back out on Wednesday....more money to dish out. But hopefully it'll make him feel better.

Haven't been able to ride that much...busy..on spring break? Don't know what's going on with that.

ok lets see if I can remember some things

Beckham- snow now spring? crazy weather! Glad to hear your boy is going so well after a fun winter!

Boocoo- congrats on your show [smile] WTG

Holly- ok I can't remember...but HI!

Lightning- awh your boy is adorable...look how relaxed he is in the video. His rudder tail yay! That's a good thing! you two are looking pretty snazzy!

And that's all I got....

Oh yeh so I don't know if anyone remembers that guy from er um Boston...well we are still in contact and I met up with him this past Wednesday. Yehhhh.

Have a good wkend!

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Beckham - Awww thankyou! He is a nice boy! (not that I'm bias or anything [Wink] ) Little more forward! Got it! Thanks! Yay for Spring and riding and lessons and training again.

Boocoo - Haha.. whaaaat? you haven't got enough age to have the age thing yet! [Wink] (I don't think forgetting is an age thing.. I cheat and have the thread open in another window [bat Eyelashes] )

Lauren - I hope the chiro makes Scotchy pony feel better. Aww thankyou! Hehe I love how everyone notices his tail! At least it's a good thing! [big Grin] Hmm sounds like "interesting" guy times...

So I had my lesson today... annnnd it wasn't as good as the last, but that doesn't matter, right?! I'll just do better next time... and actually ride him, like I'm supposed to haha.. that might help.

Hope everyone has a good day/night/whatever time it is there!

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Lightning, my computer is so slow I don't have the patience to open another window.

Man it is raining cats and dogs here. We need it though. Good thing I pulled my trailer up out of the grass before the rain hit. We are hauling Beau down to the Vet. chiro on Thurs. a.m. He seems to like his new barn. Course he has moved so much he is used to it. I have not ridden him there yet. I plan to ride him on Saturday. That will have given him a week off since the show and two good weeks to get ready for the next one! [big Grin]

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Not gonna reply to everyone, just finished finals and my brain is slightly fried...although not as bad as it has been in the past...

Well I guess things are on an upswing for me - Vegas just keeps on getting better, although she is extremely bored and angry at me for not riding her in at least a week. Only ten more days of the drugs, then two weeks after that before she can go back into real work. So she's still got lots of time to get nice and fat and out of shape.

Macy is doing well. I always forget to talk about the little girl because nothing is ever wrong with her! She's just happy as a clam and growing up (but growing out a little more [big Grin]

Oh, I got the EEG results back too - brainwaves are normal, but my heart is not, so now I get ot go do all that testing to see if we find an answer there.

Hope everyone has a good day and here's to a fantabulous spring break!!

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Lauren – Glad to hear Scotch is working well and sound. The issues you have mentioned (wide behind on smaller circles) tend to be strength related issues. With him having soundness issues and so much time off to recover from them, he is going to take a long time rebuilding muscle tone to carry himself on such a small circle as 10m. Give him time. He’ll get there. Glad to hear your saddle fits. That’s always good news!! Sore right behind the saddle generally isn’t caused by the saddle. That can be from any number of things – shoes, working too much collection before they are quite ready, or just general soreness from bringing them back into work. Where he has been stepping wide behind AND sore behind the saddle, I would consider checking his shoes on his front feet. Perhaps he just isn’t quite getting the support he would like?? Razzle does that if I try to put him in regular shoes. If I keep him in eggbars (no wedges or pads, just plain eggbars), he is happy as can be. Just needs that little bit of added support across the heel. So sorry to hear about you and the B/F, but if it isn’t right, it isn’t right. Better to break it off now than waste years and years and have to break it off later. NOW, HOW DARE YOU COME UP TO BOSTON AND NOT VISIT ME??? [Mad] Wow, you have LOTS lined up for Scotch – Scott Hassler and a show!!! He’s not going to know what hit him!!! HA!! It took you so long to get your saddle back the last time, any chance of getting some one to come TO YOU this time instead?? I’m jealous of your new Pikeur coat. I’ve been lusting after one, but it’s not in the budget!!

Shantel – Congrats on the new round pen. That ought to make lunging Ben a whole lot easier!!

Tracy – Glad to hear Fessor is doing so well on the EPM drugs. Sounds like your lessons are going great.

Megan – Glad to hear Vegas and Macy are doing so well. Those seizures sound very scary!! Glad to hear you were at least able to figure out a pattern and get back to driving yourself around as that had to be very frustrating. Congrats on the job with the vet!!! Have fun moving in with your cousins!! That sounds like a blast. Good news that your brain waves are normal, but not so good news that your heart tests didn’t come back normal. Hope it isn’t anything too serious.

Dobby – So happy to hear that the dressage work is beginning to click for you and Spectrum!! That is fantastic!!

Shelley – How is Shelby enjoying boot camp?? HA!! You are bumping Beckham up to Training Level this year, RIGHT???? You have to be done with Intro. Otherwise, you are going to bore the snot out of him!! Maybe even play with some 1st at some point???

Boocoo – Glad to hear your Ride a Test clinic went well.

Lisa – You definitely need to get your driver’s license – just think how much more often you will be able to see Lightening if you can drive yourself around!! HA!! Okay, now for your video critique - I do see a HUGE improvement over some of the videos you have posted in the past. Thinking back to your freestyle that you posted awhile back. I think your private lessons are really paying off. What I really like is that Lightening is really stretching and reaching for the contact. He is showing the willingness to do his part, but that drops the ball squarely back into your court now!! I know that you are working on contact, and since Lightening is finally showing the willingness to stretch and reach down for it, you are probably feeling like you don’t want to do anything to mess it up. The inclination is to push your hands forward and be as soft and inviting as possible to encourage him as much as you can. Well . . . now that you HAVE the stretch, time to do something with it. No more pushing the hands forward at him. Lightning is stretching forward and down because he is LOOKING for your hands. When he reaches down, don’t let your upper body follow him down. Stay nice and upright. Shoulders back, bend your elbows and keep them right at your sides. Keep your arms soft, but DON’T push your hands forward. YES, this IS going to create a good deal of contact in your hand. YES, this means that Lightning is going to feel the contact in his mouth, so keep your legs on and ride him more forward into that contact so that he doesn’t back off and try to stop when he feels the contact. He is ready now to accept it. You just have to ask him to accept it. Legs on, arms soft, a light half halt on the reins, and see what he does. I think you will be very happily surprised by the result. You have done a great job getting him to start seeking out the contact in this way. Now show him what to do with contact!!! He may get a little fussy at first, but if you stay soft and don’t tense up, you will end up with a lovely ride. Remember, we have talked about this before, make HIM change for you. Don’t YOU change for him, so stop feeding your hands forward, legs on, hold your contact (but don’t get tight or tense), and ride him up into that contact!! Great improvement!!

DQ – Sorry to hear life has been so rough for you lately. Hope it takes a turn for the better.

Yes, yes, I know. I dropped off the face of the Earth. Sorry about that, but my life sort of fell apart. I’m going to sum it up very short and fast, and any details will have to be done in PM because there isn’t much I’m willing to share on a public BB. First the Lendon Gray clinic, suffice it to say, not what I was expecting. Razzle was a superstar. I rode well. We did fantastic. I would not ride with her again. Here are some photos that an auditor took for us at the clinic:

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Yes, my whale sized Shamu has lost some poundage since the clinic THANK HEAVENS!!! As you may or may not recall, the clinic came directly on the heels of a not so great lesson. Well, a not so great clinic experience, then I got a call from Julie. Apparently our schedules no longer coincide so she is dropping me as a client. No warning. I did go talk to her. We were not able to work out a mutually satisfactory schedule. It left me feeling . . . very lost. Rather like I had been sudden tossed out to sea without a life raft of any sort. Had Razzle and I been in a better training spot, perhaps I wouldn’t have felt so abandoned, but . . . It was just really bad timing. Additionally, some comments were made that have led me to question some recent motivations and decisions, and as such, all things considered, the sale of Razzle has been put on hold pending me getting established with a new trainer and having an evaluation made. Sooooo, I have now been on my own for a month and a half now roughly. I have had a sit down talk with the trainer I “selected” to work with. He is very busy at the moment, but fortunately for me, likes me and Raz, and is going to attempt to rearrange his calendar to come to my barn to work with me. If he can not do so, he will help me to find someone else who is good who can work with me. I’ve gotten past the initial shock, dealt with the really not so great “funk” that we were in, turned us around, and actually started bringing us back and making real improvements in us, so I’m actually really proud of myself for being able to pick the pieces up and get us back in the shape we need to be in. On top of that, Razzle colicked last Tuesday night from a bad batch of rabies vaccine. He’s fine. Okay, so I think that catches you up on everything horse related going on with me. Won’t even bother getting in the rest of the life. HA!!

Now as a bonus for those of you who actually READ all of that *snicker* - a few weeks back, I had Ara take a short video clip for me because I was having some issues bringing Raz back on my own. He just didn’t feel right to me, and I couldn’t get him feeling nice and “up” and really connected and through on both sides. The left just felt stuck compared to the right which felt ok, but neither felt brilliant. At any rate, it was HORRENDOUS weather outside which I didn’t realize when I left the house, but by the time I got to the barn, YIKES!! So it was quite literally a 10 minute ride and get home ride!! I warmed up for only 5 minutes, had Ara take the video clip for me (gotta use your cameramen to your best advantage when you have them!!!), and we put Raz to bed and left in a hurry. So what you will see is a couple of trot and canter circles in each direction, a half pass (though a bad angle to even tell it is a half pass), and a medium trot, and that’s it. I uploaded the video and PMJ helped me analyze it to figure out what was wrong (too sucked back and not quick enough behind), what I needed to fix, and how to change my warm up routine to avoid the pitfalls I was getting stuck in during my rides. I made a couple of small changes to my warm up routine, and what a difference. Raz has been working soooo much better. So, at any rate, an old, not so great video of Raz and me, and not so great quality because it was late at night in the indoor, but you get what you get!!! Honestly, I really wouldn’t post this because it is such poor quality and just not Raz and me at our best, except you’ve never gotten to see Raz actually go before as I’ve never posted video, so . . . I’ll try to get something more updated when I can!!!

~Shelly~

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Yikes!! I haven't posted in forever. I have read everything though!!

Let's see...I haven't ridden in about 3 to 3.5 months. Teddy left Patty's in February, and I have been horseless. I am going to start taking weekly lessons on a school horse at Kari McClain (Miari stables, where I was at for a month last year) this coming Tuesday. I am going to look at a 10 yr old TB gelding on Saturday, and I've found a 1996 Oldenburg gelding who has competed through 3rd level and is schooling 4th and PSG that I would like to try out soon too, I need to call the seller still. I have really missed riding and am excited to get back into it. I am out of shape!!

I will try to respond to individuals soon too.

Hope everyone had/is having a great day [smile]

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Ok - first - Shelly - omg. While I love seeing video of Razzle and you.. the commentary was CLASSIC. Love it. You guys look good even for being "not so great". That REALLY stinks about Julie just up and cutting you off. Kind of weird... but Im glad you are bouncing back and hopefully this new guy will work out.

Ive been uber busy at work and having the show last weekend. We had a meeting at work today and the whole group of us decided we wanted to just become an office that is just "Straight 6" (working 6 straight hours with no breaks and going home early). So over the next 4-6 weeks, we are going to convert over to Monday 1pm-7pm and then Tues-Thurs 7am-1pm. And still get paid for 36 hours though you work 24. So thats pretty cool. The not so cool thing is the hours we arent there that are "normal" business hours (like 1pm-5pm), they want someone to have a cell phone that links to the office and we have to answer it for the patients. Well thats all fine and dandy.. whats not is that they arent paying us any extra AND on my days off, I DO NOT get up at 8am. Thats why I work at an office that is closed on Fridays. So yeh getting off at 1pm? Sweet. Having the cell phone? Not so much.

So the parents left this morning to go to Alabama to see my bro, SIL, and nephew. Its his bday today and then they are spending Easter there. Randy is at work until next week too so its just me and the critters holding down the fort.

On April 13th, Jill and I are heading down to Canterbury and are both debuting 1st level. I know I am def showing 1:1 but am trying to decide between 1:2 and 1:3. The reason I like 1:3 more is b/c my coefficients are for free walk, canter circles, and leg yields - which are WAYYYYYYY better than our lengthenings - which are your coefficients in 1:2. So I may just ride 1:3 a few times and see how it goes... now that I know where P and I are! [Embarrassed]

Now question for those who have shown 1st level - in the lengthenings it says you are graded on the "lengthening of the frame and stride..." etc.. so not only am I supposed to have her get a longer stride but also let her get longer in the frame as well? So is that more of a push my hands forward thing or let the reins out or what? Obviously Ill ask my trainer at my next lesson but that will be in like another week or two.

Oh and I dont know whats going on.. but I rode on Tuesday and let me just leave it at this: I was on Amoxicillian for 10 days for a sinis infection and being a woman.. it caused problems else where... [Wink] So when I rode on Tuesday it was a little uncomfortable so I def kept the front of my pelvis AWAY from the saddle. Well now all of a sudden.. esp when cantering - I feel like Im like actually SITTING with my thighs and everything in the canter and can actually use my abs to stretch up and support her more like in our 15m canter circles and stuff. Whats up with that? Not a bad thing but strange!

Anyways.. Ill catch up this weekend since Ill be here ALL ALONE... well tomorrow Im trailering over to Jills and we are going to ride the 1st level tests and see which ones we like and then Im going back over on Saturday and maybe Sunday too. So yeh at least I can ride.

Happy Easter!

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Lightning- We all have those FANTASTIC lessons and then the not so hot ones. What can ya do though....just continue to work on the bad parts and trek ahead. Yes interesting guy times...I've never been this confused in my life before!

Boocoo- it rained like that for us yestrday!! I bet your excited for the next one...is this one a rec. show?

Megan- glad to hear things are going better in your neck of the woods!! Yikes that something might be up with the heart....keeping you in my thoughts and prayers!

Shelly- Yes definately know there is mega lack of muscle. That's to be expected with his 8 months off! YIKES! Not sure about his back being sore...He worked really hard two days prior to him being checked and I think that had to play a big role. I think the other main thing was that his hip was out of place.... I'm just trying to keep him sound and happy. so he's getting a massage just about every 3 weeks. And just got chiro. yesterday. Thanks...it's been a tough few weeks with my personal life, never been in this situation before and i'm extremely confused. I know I know I thought of you when I was in Boston...but it was all work related. hehe except the time at the bar... The Pikeur isnt in my budget...but I did some barbie math and got it done. LOL.

Oh no...so sorry to hear about Julie. What a bummer and a bit odd. Best of luck to finding another trainer...or moreso that this new trainer will be able to help you out. It's always a perk when the trainer likes your horse and is willing to help you succeed. What's up w/ the clinic...I think I mentioned something about Lendon (I've ridden w/ her as well) Curious to know what you got from it...PM me? BTW Raz looks lovely in the pics. OMG your video...the comments are hysterical...wait Ara is a guy? Ok I'm totally lost and now feel very dumb. Gotta make due with a rushed ride. Been there done that. Sseems like you got some of the things figured out. Definately could see from the video that he was lacking impulsion. Like you said you had to make some adjustments and sounds like they worked! YaY. either way you 2 still looks nice!

McKenzie- well hello stranger!!! glad to hear you'll be able to start riding again! Make sure you inform us of your horse shopping!

Shantel- sounds like you are crazy busy at work! Basically in the lengthing they want to see the topline get longer with the strides...don't give away the reins! It's more of a pushing from behind into a soft contact to have them lengthing from behind and over the back and through the neck. You see a lot of 1st level riders/horses that not really length but quicken the stride and fall on the forehand. They want to see more change in the hindend and the lengthing of the frame. Good luck at your show!

Not much going on here...school is very busy. Work is busy...life is busy. Oh I also have taken on 2 more ponies. AH! what am I thinking? Scotch has had 2 days off b/c of being chiro. And tomorrow I'll ride to see how he feels. Hope everyone has a good week!

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3day, I am excited for the next show. It is a rec. show and I got my entry conformation today.

I took Beau down to my chiro/Vet. today. Good thing. He has been sore in his neck and she determined his sacrum was tipped and his TMJ was out on one side. So he had issues at both ends and still worked fairly decent for me. She thinks he must have slipped out in a muddy pasture to have tipped his sacrum. That of course made me really mad, cause I was constantly telling the folks at the last barn not to let him out after it has rained, unless the ground is practically dry. We could tell he felt much better because he hauled a lot quieter going home. Plus he just loffs his Dr.!! [big Grin] She told me not to turn him out for a couple of days and to hand walk him, then ride him again after 3 days. Now he is in a place where he won't be turned out if it's to wet. And right now, I'm the one turning him out anyway, as I am doing a.m. chores. Plus the fact that he is literally 3 min. away from my house now. Hubby and I are seriously looking at horse property again and hoping to do something by summer time.

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