Izzy and I got invited to ride in a lesson yesterday evening at a new arena. It sounded like a great opportunity to get her out to do something, so I jumped on the chance.
For the record, all of the following were firsts.
2) Loudspeaker playing music
4) Dark outside
5) Riding under lights
6) Riding with 3 other horses
All things considered, she did remarkably well. She was a bit sticky about wanting to go forward, but she didn't have any major spooks while I was on her. She was a bit nutty on the lunge line, but she settled in ok. The biggest problem was that all the other horses were on edge because of something that happened earlier in the day out there, and she picked up on that pretty well.
Still, a pretty decent ride.
I rode this morning and she was fabulous. It was actually a big confidence boost for me to ride her through her stickiness last night because when she started to act silly this morning, I was like "pssh, this is home. It's no where near as scary as that other arena" and just rode her through. In fact, our little Halfie friend Irie had a pretty major explosion on the lunge line while I was riding, and Izzy just gave him a funny look and didn't so much as flinch.
I love my pony.
Also, thank you to all of you who gave me this award, including Nina and Sam, Denali, Frizzle and Salem, and Marissa and Tucker.
So, seven things about Izzy and I:
1) Sprinkler Bandit is the result of a misunderstanding in junior high. It stuck. Also, no one else on the internet uses it, so it's a convenient label. Also, my old mare LOVES sprinklers.
2) I don't consider myself a "horse mom". I know that most people do, but to me, Izzy (and any other horse I work with consistently) are partners, albeit subservient. Besides, if I was Cassie's mom and she had Izzy and now I'm Izzy mom, there are some weird family dynamics going on. Sheesh.
3) Despite living in cow country, I haven't the vaguest idea how one goes about putting on a western saddle. I tried once. It didn't work.
4) I ride english because when I first signed up for riding lessons, I figured that english saddles were lighter than western saddles. Hey, I was 9.
5) Whenever horse people come out to see Izzy, I feel like I need to give them a pretty massive disclaimer about how despite the fact she's barefoot and I use a treeless saddle, we're not "weird". You know how that is.
6) Izzy's pretty awesome. Sometimes I worry that she won't want to jump and thus won't be an event horse, but then I realize that even if she did, I'm ok with that. As long as she does trails, too.
7) I am an obsessive nerd. For reals. I love the internet because I can research the crap out of any purchase I want to make. It goes like this: I think, "Hm, I wonder what a new dressage bridle would cost." I google and check dover. "Hm, there is a huge price range." I narrow my options to horse size, white padded, no flash, and nice leather quality between $100-200. I check horse tack review, the COTH forums, and customer reviews. Then, I put it aside and think about it. I look at it online every day and wonder, "is this what I want to look at for the next ten years?" Finally, when I decide that I think yes is the answer, I go to our (one) local tack store. I examine the options, go home and repeat the process.
My 15 blogs:
I would call them favorites, but I like every one I follow. These are just the ones that I guess I'm most interested in.
Fugly Horse of the Day
When I decided to keep my training journal online, I googled "horse blog" and this was the first one that came up. I got to my current online community by checking every one of Fugly's commentors to see if they had a blog like I wanted to write, and then I "followed" them. I've since moved on from that method, but it provided me with an excellent start. Plus, oodles of horse people read this, so it gives me a bit of context for what's happening online.
Green and Green = Black and Blue
I found Denali through Fugly's comments, and I love watching their journey together. Denali's mom has a great sense of humor and I love reading about her life with and without horses.
Bay State Brumby
Lilly's mom takes tons of pictures and just loves her horse.
Horses of the Follywoods
Jean has three boys, all full of character. Also, she's an Ansur distributor who answers pretty much all of my questions. This is great, because I have a lot.
From Wingman to Witching Hour
Salem and Izzy have remarkably similar brains. Really. Though I must say, I like Izzy better. Also, they would have been name twins if I'd held to my original plan of calling Izzy "Salem's Lady". WHOA.
Tucker the Wunderkind
Marissa is what I want to be in a few years. Employed. Plus, she and Tucker are fun to read about.
From Racehorse to Showhorse
Izzy's mom is an OTTB, so I have a special fondness for them. This lady has two. Both are gorgeous and she takes amazing pictures of them. If she's not looking, I'll steal Ollie and bring him home with me.
Halt Near X
The title pretty much sums this up; subtle, horse-oriented humor. And I love it.
Tango Dressage Blog
I've discover this more recently, and it's excellent. A lot of thought is put into each post, and it shows. I linked to her post on riding the horse instead of riding the spook a couple weeks ago. That remains one of my favorite blog posts ever, because when I read it, something clicked for me.
Behind the Bit
Again, this is how I stay in the online equestrian loop. I mean, I didn't even know hoof surgery was possible.
A Year with Horses
Kate takes care of a whole barn full, and her slightly unconventional take on horsemanship has gotten me thinking many times.
I Will Jump Sweet Horse Jumps
She lives in another hemisphere. Her horses actually jump. 1.2 m is way higher than it really sounds. What could be wrong?
Dapple of my Eye
Rachel and Granite are pretty awesome. Plus, we're in semi-similar places in life, so I like to see how she fits her horse into her life.
High Tech Horse
This is Rachel's friend, Eva. She blogs because she has to, but I enjoy reading all the same. Plus, she might continue after the class ends. The suspense in killing me. (BUY BABY MORGAN!!!) Ahem, just my advice.
Someone doing what I want to do. 'Nuff said.