Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thanksgiving and Half-halts!

Thanksgiving, oh Thanksgiving! My favorite time of year! The perfect excuse to cook an unreasonable amount of food and eat most of what you've cooked while saving the rest for endless leftovers that can be turned into new recipes along the way :) But along with the excusable gluttony, we as a society are also meant to sit back and reflect on all that we should be thankful for during this year. So, last Thursday, I did just that (eat and reflect!). In the morning, I was fortunate enough to go down to the barn and greet three shining faces that were less than thrilled with me about feeding them slightly later than usual. The first thing I was thankful for were my healthy, happy horses. Although this year has been full of many ups and downs, my horses have been troopers and stayed healthy, content and understanding beings when I myself was not always having a great day. For this I am truly thankful. My barn mate (the mother of one of those three bright shining pony faces) who came down to the farm that week to enjoy the holiday with her family, came to help me clean the barn and also to enjoy her equine companion whom she is also very thankful for! For this, I am thankful for good friends. Without them, we lose a lot of support through good and bad times. My friends have been through a lot this year with their own personal lives, my moving and just losing some of them in general but without the ones who I remain close with I would definitely be lost in this world. So thank you to those of you who choose to remain my friend! After the barn, I made it back to the house and was immediately struck with the mouth-watering aroma of my mother's hard work in the kitchen and that brings me to my last major thankful thought which is my family. We were blessed this year that every one was healthy and very positive about the move south. But we were ultimately blessed to have each other during this transitional period. Without my parents, I would be wondering aimlessly because they are my sole support and my constant reminder to aim high and follow my dreams. I hope everyone can be as lucky as I am one day :)

Now, to the not so sentimental stuff...the day after Thanksgiving! Black Friday, the start of leftovers and early shopping galore! But not for this barn girl...well, I did thoroughly enjoy my leftovers ;) The day after Turkey Day was my second lesson with Lynn Leath over at North Star Training Center. Now, I know if you read my last blog I said I would write after my first lesson...well, if you actually read my blog I don't always keep my word on when I'm going to write next (that will probably be a forerunner on my New Year's Res..."keep to my promised writing schedule :)!) You can also assume that the first lesson went well since I said this was my second lesson with Lynn...haha I know I'm tricky! Alas I digress, back to the good stuff. So, as usual anytime I try and take my horses somewhere it threatens to rain...so I rubbed Buddy down as best I good threw on his shipping boots and ThinLine horse helmet (yes, he is a head banger and this one keeps his noggin extra safe!) and off to Chapel Hill we went. Buddy warmed up quite nicely with a swinging back, soft mouth and only spooked at the new poinsettias in the flower boxes twice! Lynn had me continue my work from my first lesson which was straightness and tweaking my body position (gee, what a surprise!). Even though our lesson was three weeks before, she had noticed a considerable difference in our straightness and decided to incorporate more of my friend the "half-halt". With this work we continued straightness on the long/short sides as well as circles but then threw in some serpentines in order to bring in the half-halt which surprisingly resulted in the beginning of half-steps...Yay for piaffe! Then we did this at the canter reminding Buddy to keep his hind legs active since he tends to walk with his back legs when I don't get after him...oops! After 45 min., Buddy and me were beat but I was thrilled with the progress and it's only our second time out. Next season is going to be AWESOME if we keep this up!

Until next time or the next exciting horsey moment occurs...Happy Horsing!