No Longer a Track Horse

I’m sure you are all sick of hearing about how Gus and I are handling our Novice debut and really just want to hear more about how New Kid, aka Pax, is doing. Right? No? Oh well, here’s an update anyway.

Except for that he’s had the last week or so off due to Pine Top and the holidays, I think we’re making a lot of progress. Pax is getting a lot better in the cross ties (though I’m still a little hesitant to put him back in the wash rack considering he already broke the cross ties once) and no longer thinks about kicking when I put hind boots on. He was very naughty for the farrier though, which is not at all acceptable. So we’ll be working on that.

Pax has had to learn a whole new way of going though. One where he has to mind and be respectful of people instead of doing whatever he wants.  But he’s a smart kid and he’s learning.

My big goal for Pax is to take him to the Heart of the Carolinas and do the Future Event Horse 2yo division. I don’t expect him to score well,  he’s not really what they’re looking for, but I think it would be a good experience for both of us. It gets him off property and in a show setting without a lot of stress (or at least I hope not a lot of stress!). I wish I was closer to Ocala and could go down to the FEH symposium next year to learn more but it’s just too far unfortunately and in the middle of the week.

One step at a time for the baby horse. More ground work and desensitizing this winter and then, once things start warming up, we’ll start hacking. It’s fun to have a horse that’s old enough to do some riding but still be able to focus on a lot of the building blocks.

January 2017 Goals

Despite the rain, December was a busy but productive month. I feel like I got a lot done even if the goals don’t quite show it. 

December 2016
Gus

  • Work on ground work with help from New Trainer – We did do some ground work but not with New Trainer and not nearly as much as we needed. Worked on though.
  • Include more desensitizing to weekly rides (flags, tarps, gate opening, etc.) – Didn’t do this at all. I still would really like to!
  • Reestablish standing still at the mounting block – Yes, got this for now. I have to be diligent to not let this creep back again though.
  • Work on getting forward “working trot” instead of up and down “pony trot” earlier in our rides – This one is a huge success. I am finally able to really feel the difference too between just a fast trot and an a baby forward trot.


Me

  • Work out three times a week on top of any riding – Fail. Big fail.
  • Get out to the barn at last three times a week – Good some weeks, bad others. I don’t like going out in the rain since there are no trails and no cover on the arena (and it’s closed during hard rain).

Harley

  • Agility training four times a week (can include weekly class) – Failed here again.
  • Learn “Look” cue – We got this and it is so helpful!
  • Establish contacts – Sort of? We didn’t work with the contact board like we really need to but her contacts are much better in class. We have a clinic to work on these at the end of the week.
  • Confirm six weaves from a straight on approach (onside and offside) – I’m not really sure if these are confirmed or not since we only did them during class (which she was amazing at).


Ziva

  • Continue to become part of the pack with 3x weekly walks and group focused play time – Due to a lot of rain, this also fell by the wayside. We need to pick this back up again.
  • Find her high value treat – Found. She loves string cheese.
  • Introduce to one jumps – Didn’t happen due to rain.
  • Introduce to six weaves – See above.
  • Go to the groomer – Success! Although she was not allowed to play with the other dogs due to some aggression. Oh Ziva.

The House

  • Clean up junk in back yard – We cleaned up a lot but it seems non ending. This is not finished.
  • Move upstairs, involves:
    • Finish plaster on master bedroom closets – Done!
    • Paint closets in master bedroom, spare bedroom, and office – Done!
    • Second coat of paint in spare bedroom – Not done.
    • Paint master bedroom – Done!
    • Finish floors in master bedroom – Done!
    • Finish floors in hallway – Mostly done… just need to finish the coat closet.
    • Paint crown molding in master bedroom, spare bedroom, and office – Not done.
    • Paint windows in master bedroom, spare bedroom, and office – Not done.
    • Put doors back on their hinges – Done!
  • Get ceilings painted in master bedroom, spare bedroom, office, and hallway – Not done.
  • Get baseboards done through out upper level – Not done.


All in all, not bad. I’m actually pretty impressed with the amount we got done on the house. I did the worst on Ziva’s goals so I’ll really have to focus on her in January.
So on to January!

January 2017

Gus

  • Four training rides for Gus and four lessons this month for me
  • Continue to work on ground work, hopefully with New Trainer
  • Get 2017 Show Schedule put together


Me

  • Bring lunch to work 3x a week minimum
  • Stretch four times a week
  • Finish wedding thank yous (yes, I’m terrible!)

Harley

  • Agility training 4x a week (can include weekly class or clinic)
  • Confirm 6 weaves
  • Establish contacts


Ziva

  • Work on basic obedience 5x a week
  • Continue to integrate with the pack by 3x weekly walks
  • If weather gets nicer, introduce to one jumps
  • If weather gets nicer, introduce to weaves

The House

  • Second coat of paint in spare bedroom
  • Paint crown molding in master bedroom, spare bedroom, and office
  • Paint windows in master bedroom
  • Get closet organizers in
  • Get ceilings painted in master bedroom, spare bedroom, office and hallway
  • Get baseboards put in upstairs

    2017 Looking Forward: Year Goals

    I cannot believe how quickly 2016 went. On a day to day basis, mostly it felt like the year was dragging it’s feet but when I look back at the whole thing, I have no idea what happened to the year!

    FoxberryPhotoshoot22

    Personal Goals

    Continue to find ways to eat healthier and work on fitness, make this part of my daily life

    Put work aside at the end of the day so that I can enjoy my horse and my training

    Blog consistently a minimum of 3 times a week

    riverbirch_fall_20161120-28

    Dog Goals

    Begin agility classes with Ziva

    Take Ziva to one NADAC trial

    Continue to refine my handling skills and think faster on my feet

    Take Harley to an AKC trial

    PoplarPlace_Schooling-25

    Horse Goals

    Show Beginner Novice in recognize competition

    Qualify for AECs

    Be comfortable schooling novice at home

    Run Novice at a schooling show
    ChattHills8

    2016 Look Back: Goals

    I didn’t have many goals for 2016 only because with the Wedding looming, I didn’t have the bandwidth for much else!

    2016 Goals

    1. Get through my wedding!
      Success. The wedding went off with almost no problems and none that I worried myself about. Everything looked exactly like I pictured it and I had a wonderful time. Still glad it’s over though

      wp-1482855949852.jpg

    2. Be working on First Level dressage work
      Eh, sort of. We are working on first level type work but we are not doing first level quality work. Some of the concepts are needed to get the basics but at least we are working on them!
    3. Go to a recognized dressage show with my trainer
      Hahaha, yah, no. This did not happen. Maybe it would have if we hadn’t switched barns but probably not. See being too focused on the wedding.
    4. Move up to BN at the schooling shows
      We did this! Because Gus and I rock. End of story
      ChattHills38
      Okay, not completely, but Gus does rock. We did have some issues at this show but it was still a good outing and proved that this was something we could do. We’ll be rocking recognized this year so I’m excited.
    5. Start working with a jump trainer again
      Thankfully this one happened earlier than I was expecting! I love working with New Trainer and I love feeling like I’m getting more confident with my jumping. I also had the opportunity to work with some really great clinicians this year.
      ClinicCC_5

     

    So 3/5 isn’t terrible but it could be better. I still think I had a very successful 2016 and I’m looking forward to 2017!

     

    December 2016 Goals

    This year is almost over and I have no idea where it went. While there were times when it was crawling, mostly I look back and wonder if I was even paying attention! I’d really like to end this year on a good note and feel like I accomplished something, plus, I’d really like to get a head start on my New Year’s Resolutions, so I’m going to start doing goals again.

    This time, they’re more than just for me and Gus. I’m going to add house goals and even goals for the dogs. I realized last weekend that they are athletes as much as Gus and I so I should be working with them to accomplish goals too.

    Gus

    • Work on ground work with help from New Trainer
    • Include more desensitizing to weekly rides (flags, tarps, gate opening, etc.)
    • Reestablish standing still at the mounting block
    • Work on getting forward “working trot” instead of up and down “pony trot” earlier in our rides

    riverbirch_fall_20161120-37

    Me

    • Work out three times a week on top of any riding
    • Get out to the barn at last three times a week

    Guinness

    • No goals for Guinness since he is Eric’s dog and I don’t have time to handle another project

    riverbirch_fall_20161120-16

    Harley

    • Agility training four times a week (can include weekly class)
    • Learn “Look” cue
    • Establish contacts
    • Confirm six weaves from a straight on approach (onside and offside)

    Ziva

    • Continue to become part of the pack with 3x weekly walks and group focused play time
    • Find her high value treat
    • Introduce to one jumps
    • Introduce to six weaves
    • Go to the groomer

    wp-1480338456531.jpg

    The House

    • Clean up junk in back yard
    • Move upstairs, involves:
      • Finish plaster on master bedroom closets
      • Paint closets in master bedroom, spare bedroom, and office
      • Second coat of paint in spare bedroom
      • Paint master bedroom
      • Finish floors in master bedroom
      • Finish floors in hallway
      • Paint crown molding in master bedroom, spare bedroom, and office
      • Paint windows in master bedroom, spare bedroom, and office
      • Put doors back on their hinges
    • Get ceilings painted in master bedroom, spare bedroom, office, and hallway
    • Get baseboards done through out upper level

    Oh man, this feels like a LOT, especially with holidays and cold weather and short days. Guess I will just have to stay focused.