Monday, May 14, 2012

Pictures and Poundage

Yesterday, despite my allergy migraine (which is still hanging around dammit), I made it out to the barn for a short ride.  My friend took a few pictures and I noticed some things that were funny and some not so funny.

The not so funny is that because I had to stop exercising when I was having hip problems and I have added some unattractive poundage to my middle.  Okay, you're right.  It's not because I stopped exercising.  It's because I stopped exercising and replaced exercising with eating.  An extra hour of eating a day is WAY easier than exercising and doesn't require special shoes.  But the outcome is that I now have to make a plan to lose the gained pounds.  Mainly because I'm too cheap to buy new clothes and breeches are not the most forgiving of clothing.

The other not so funny is just a quick self reminder.  Elbows bent!!  And I think I should have lengthened my stirrups some.  I'm borrowing the saddle that my trainer uses for everybody, so the stirrups are always different lengths when you get on and I haven't figured out which one is right for me.  I can't WAIT until I get my own saddle.

You will also notice my pony sporting her shortened mane AND a very shortened tail. I arrived at the barn and noticed my horse's tail had been chopped to her hocks.  Uh.....what?  So I asked Laura about it.  Yep, she cut it off.  The princess was stepping on it.  And it got in the way.  And in eventing, tails are chopped to the hocks. And my pony is in training with an event trainer.  Sigh.  So, to all my flowing mane and tail Arab buddies, I'm sorry.  My pony is now officially an 'eventing' pony, even if she's never seen a jump in her life.  Maybe the tail is the first step to bravery?

Now, the funny.  I'm going to throw my vanity out the window and show you these because I thought they were hilarious.  My pony and I make the same facial expressions.  We're twinsies! As evidenced by the photos below.  Also, for those dressage folks who don't use gadgets, yes that is a running martingale.  It's not to keep her from putting her head above the bit, which you can see in the photos she can do just fine.  It's to keep her from breaking my nose when she does her Arab-temper-tantrum-upside-down-neck-head-to-nose-smash move.  I'm going to be checking with Laura about when we take it off.  We need it less and less as she learns to be more obedient.

See how we are both grimacing as we turn?  Also, isn't our hot pink pad looking bright today?  I don't intentionally plan to be so colorful, but somehow it always works out that we have numerous colors happening.  Today it was blue and pink.

Okay, I'm attempting to smile while riding.  That requires too much thought and instead it comes out as a weird grimace.

Tight mouth and shoulders as we negotiate a turn?  Yes, that's me and my pony!

Again, look at our mouths.  We love to grimace.  From my leg position, I'm guessing we were attempting a turn on the forehand here.

To prove that not all moments are painfully ugly.

TWINSIES!!!  I love that we're both doing something strange with our mouths.

Let's both SMILE!
So, if we're twinsies and she is mirroring me then I really need to think about why I don't want to go's getting better but I'll bet if I figured out what scared me about a 'forward' horse I would solve 90% of our problem.


  1. awe pretty mare and pretty rider!

    Forward = possible loss of control ?

  2. The weird thing was forward for me? I think Jeni in on to something with loss of control. But I find that when I am pushed to ask my mare for more forward - I end up with a more in control feeling.

  3. Oh my goodness, I'd die if I walked into the barn and found my mare's mane and tail shortened. Stepping on it? That's what braids and tail knots are for! lol That said, I have to admit, your girl does look super cute with her new eventer do. I am actually a fan of a pulled mane on an Arab that does sport horse type stuff. Shows off that pretty neck!

    My first Arab mare was super good at the random head smash move, too. I still don't know how they manage to contort themselves like that, but I'm sure the martingale saved my nose many times.

    Oh, and love the hot pink!!!

  4. Going forward can be really scary! There's so much that can go wrong, and I'm sure (maybe only subconsciously) a lack of core strength makes it extra scary for you. :( Are there any horses you trust who you could work on riding the more forward gaits with? Coming from a western background, I know it was a huge adjustment to ride the sitting trot on my first dressage lesson horse... I just wasn't used to that much movement in the trot

  5. I love the thoughts on forward! Thanks everyone. I know the more forward we are, the EASIER it is to ride but maybe my reptile brain hasn't figure that out yet....

  6. Ahhh, your pony is soooooo cute....

  7. Hilarious post! Your mare is really lovely. :)