I rode twice today, and he was fabulous.
We went for a beautiful morning hack on the trails by ourself. He was a little wary of the mud near the bridge, so I got off and led him through it and he was perfect as a prince. We trotted over a little log, through a stream (FINALLY!!!!) and did a little more trotting where I knew the footing would be good. Then we turned around and walked back over the bridge and through the woods, back to the barn.
Since the hack was light and only about 30 minutes, I took him out to the little itty-bitty (12") course that we (Mandy, Lauren, and I) set up last night for the Wilson schooling show that's tomorrow. I worked on pace and rhythm and our balance. Really, I just wanted to see how the course rode, and work on my 2-point and canter seat some more.
He was great. I tried to stay nice and rhythmic, and we only had one issue, where I sat back too much and he plowed right through this tiny oxer. HA. I felt stupid. reset it, jumped it again, and finished. He was great.
I cooled him out, brushed him down, let him eat breakfast, and then turned him out.
Lauren got to the barn around 11 and we (Lauren on Cookie, Josh, JD, and I) went out to the jump field where Lauren jumped Cookie. Well, all the jumps were still 12", so Josh, JD, and I all went to reset them to 3'3".... well, i thought all the holes (which were marked with the ft'in") were correct... until I reset 4 jumps, stepped back and realized that they were 4'3", and not 3'3"...
I looked at Lauren and said,
"hahaha... I think those are a little higher than 3'3"..."
and she replied,
"uh, yeah. but that's okay."
"I followed the marks..."
"Oh, never follow the marks. They're way off!"
"Great...Do you want me to reset them?"
"No, no. It's fine. No problem."
and off she went, jumping almost 4'6" fences... I just laughed to myself. I wish a whole foot wasn't a big deal to me... I'm kicking myself now for not taking my camera out today (like I had wanted to!). They would have been some awesome shots. Cookie is amazing.
I got my mud-masked boy out of the pasture and re-groomed him, put on his all his clothes (which is my catch-all phrase for his wraps, bell boots, saddle pads, saddle/girth, and bridle), and got on. I got through my stretchy-walk warm up, and had begun trotting when Lauren came and started my lesson. He was nice and through and we were doing our best to keep our solid, even tempo. We got through some nice trot and canter each direction, then took a break.
After a nice 5-minute walk-break, we picked him back up and started some good lateral work. We did shoulder-in and leg yielding. Shoulder in is easy for me to post and do, but when it comes to leg yielding, I have to sit to stay balanced and organized (My sitting trot is much much better than my posting trot). We did some acceptable leg yielding, and then his trot became much more collected, even, and all-around nicer.
It was funny, when I began to post again Lauren called through the gusty wind at me "No! sit! I like your sitting trot!" I laughed and sat back in the tack, then asked for a beautiful right lead canter, and then, again, came my affirmation form Lauren, "Beautiful! yes, yes. I like your sitting trot."
So... back to the ab work-outs for me! I'm at the okay-to-sit phase! Which I'm perfectly happy with, I much prefer to sit. I've only been posting because he was so out-of-shape for so long and I wanted to take it more easy on his back. But his back is much different now, and he's much much more fit, so, time to get down and dirty.
are you Bigtime?
we're on our way!!