Wednesday, February 28, 2007


i made over what the weather would do.

when i got there it was blowing, it was starting to rain and there were some huge clouds.

time i'd got mucked out (ran out of time this morning) bedded up, got her in and fed.... the wind was dying and the clouds had gone.


Tuesday, February 27, 2007


i suppose that is a possibility - but if so, it's ONLY in the arena... nice thought though! I wish i knew, it has to be something going back a long way from the period when I didn't know her (which is quite lengthy, really ... ) but of the issues she was known to come with, that was one of them....and has proved the least capable of resolution.

I don't want to give up on it. i could give up, and just ride, but I think ground work is important, as does everyone else, so I'll persist.

It has been wet here all day, so I rightly decided to feed her and leave her; it started to rain as we were locking up! and some gales forecast.

The authorities "close" bridges to high sided vehicles (those over the Tyne, anyway) in the wind; the trouble is, the high sided vehicles ignore the signs.

oh, and simba the kitten has now learnt how to murder birds; dead thrush on the landing last of the perils of having cats! especially young and energetic ones!

Monday, February 26, 2007

more ground work

a little bit more ground work to see if i could get her to go right; coulnd't, but did manage to stroke down her right side twice, before she realised she'd let me and moved back round again.

the good thing yesterday that i forgot to mention.. she let me run up the right stirrup, first time she's done that, so clearly heading in the right direction...

Sunday, February 25, 2007

very chilled

Molly was today. Rode out, 4 of us, just a long walk again; Molly was content to be on ahead for most of it which really pleased all of us. She really don't like mud though, i have to watch my knees through gates in consequence and downhill is a bit of a pain (i'm sure, in fact, she'd much rather be on tarmac!). Was really pleased. Was even more pleased one of the group spotted my bluetooth earpiece on the deck... lost it on the way out, hadn't even realised, so that was really good!

Saturday, February 24, 2007

i should have stopped...

when i was ahead.

decided to do a little bit of ground work tonight, since it was a very gentle walk hack this morning.

she started of letting me go to her right; surprised herself,but did it.

after a bit of work left, i put a lot of pressure on and she went right in trot YAY. i shoudl have stopped then instead of trying to get her to do it again ... duh

mud avoidance

amazingly woke up this morning (really late night last night!) and went down early and out for a ride. the difficulty was to know where to go to avoid the mud Three of us out; one on a very old horse that only potters about now (about 25, they think...), another on a friend's horse, and me on molly. just walked. but i was pleased with her. she led through a couple of the gates that were open (a bit dodgy, they're narrow and i was trying to get her through them without rushing, to avoid knee injury on gate post!) and one has been reported more times than enough, it's dropped and can't be closed whilst mounted! but i was pleased with her. and i think we got the best of the day ... it was so warm, i was considering turning her back out without her rug, but cooled down a bit and will rain again.

but shedding!!! lashings of winter coat coming out already....

Shall do the same again tomorrow i think if i get up....

Thursday, February 22, 2007


i shoudln't complain, had a good week so far as able to do something every night until tonight .... someone last night said i was dedicated, but frankly my view has always been that if I have a horse i ought to be doing SOMETHING with it, and the more so when it's a horse like Molly that needs a lot more work that most and more consistently....

same person said she thought she (molly) has a good topline now; I'm not so convinced myself, but certainly an awful lot better than she was! the haybar is a substantial advantage of course, feed off the floor but without the mess!!!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

small steps

towards letting me round to her right.

i started where i finished last night. had to spend some time moving her back end from her left, then going back to her standing in front of me and seeing if she'd let me toucht he right side of her face.

once.... i was round to her right hand side then she realised and moved back

then - and this wsa the good note we finished on - she let me move to her right hand side, and stayed there whilst we walked a small circle and that was so good i took her straight out of the arena .. although keeping her on my right whilst doing so. i had the bb on, and just applied a small amount of pressure to pull her head that way, very gently rather than pulling.

hopefully the weather will be such that we can do a small amount more tomorrow.

this is good!

and that it'll stay good to ride at the weekend.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

will she won't she

tonight i decided to work slowly and calmly on trying to get her to put herself in a position where i was on her right side.

we eventually got to a point where she was nearly there, and she was letting me put her hand up to the right sideof her face and stroke it. once she found herself going right and really startled herself ....

i think if i keep that up, as opposed to my previous modus operandi, i might get somewhere (albeit it'll take a while) and there'll hopefully be less for richard maxwell to work on when we get that sorted...

i was actually quite pleased with myself as well.... i'd made a conscious decision to stay calm and did.

i might get a new visitor as well ... someone from ultimatedressage wanted to know stuff, so i said come read the blog.... hope i don't regret that!!!!

Monday, February 19, 2007

wet ... very wet

well, i suppose not very very, but too wet to think about doing anything ....

found xenophon on the internet last night available as a free download so have been reading bits of that.... will be interesting.

the most interesting thing so far: why do barefoot trimmers say that the frog should touch the ground, xenophon says the opposite....

Sunday, February 18, 2007


i se that was a previous post title.

i suppose because this whole process involves a lot of thought.

i think i've worked out that i'm trying to move my leg back in trot, when there's no need with this saddle.

i think i DO need the moulded panels. and/or i haven't got the girthing right anyway - i know they say don't tighten too much with the prochoice girth, but it gets quite sticky to the horse and then, i think, you think it's tight enough when in fact it isn't.

the saddle slipped back slightly and there was a ruffle that hadn't been there before ... i think because of that.

she did, however move away from my right leg to the left so we were moving laterally across the school. first time she's done that.

you will all remember my posts on the equisimulator; i finally got round to adding to the thread on the subject on ultimatedressage.....possibly putting a cat amongst pigeons, but i do really think that a lot of trainers/people who've been doing this forever and know their position is right, forget what it was like at the beginning

anyway, have to find something to do whilst EE is down!!!!!

Saturday, February 17, 2007

yay a ride out

went for a hack out unexpectedly - a couple of the people who normally go out first thing were going out shortly after i got on, so i went with them .... down the lane, Molly didn't do her usual whip round which was good, through some fields, trot up holme hill, round the top, walk back down - that was scary a bit as it's slippy, she wanted to go faster than i wanted, the saddl ehad slipped a touch and i really wish i'd got the suede seat!!!!! - and then back home, and Molly & I opened the last gate, and a nice trot back along the lane. by then, I was really sinking into the saddle and felt as though I had that a lot better. So i was pleased, if somewhat wimpish going out! vaguely worrying about what she was going to do. Plus, she seems to have her confidence back for going ahead, by the time we got back to the bottom of the hill she was walking on ahead!

So I was pleased....

Was telling people about tetley, they're all disgusted.

And you're right jean about when EE finds out about this ... there are peole on there near that place, I have no doubt ...

deprived of addiction

to the EE forums LOL.

I knew i went on there probably too much for my own good, but it's very weird not being able to ..

Friday, February 16, 2007

a disgrace

last march I met a new friend who had two lovely horses, tetley and tia. tetley was huge and gorgeous and a privilege to ride. passaged for the hell of it! hell of a horse. he was sent south to a supposedly good home .... and has had to be brought back having either been starved, or fallen ill and not treated. we all want the person who did this to explain herself - that's when we stop crying at the state the horse is now in. i've never been so upset about anything in my life - worse than having my cats put down when they got to that stage, worse than when my previous horse billy had major surgery, worse (in anticipation) than losing my mother will be when i do ..... there is no excuse for tetley's condition. we all only hope that back home he will recover his condition and mental well being. i cannot believe how anyone, especially someone who is supposed to hold a BHS qualification, can do this.

oooooooo gggrrrhhhhhhhhh rant.

as to molly - it was very very wet tonight so again she just got her tea. i knew i should have done more wednesday/thursday .....

and I WILL be having richard maxwell see her, YAY. my friend is organising it, subject to his availability, hopefully first week in april! YAY. mind it'll be interesting. I know a lot of the time when i say i can't get round to her right side in the arena, people don't quite grasp how much i mean that .....

i should have partner take some video of before, and then we can have some video of the day, and then it'll be good to see me continuing after. i'm so looking forward to it. must sort the camcorder out, the digital might do video but not enough for that!!!!! (although getting the video onto the pc wil be interesting ..... might have to get some more software, the stuff i had before doesn't work with xp and the camcorder is analogue......)

BTB the video on clipshack was on a good day ... it went seriously pear shaped not too long thereafter...

Thursday, February 15, 2007

long rider in jail in india

read this and weep... for india, and for daniel robinson... then go sign the petition and write to te FCO and the indian high commission and whoever .... (and jean, perhaps point your local congressman / senator at it?)

i was being optimistic

in thinking the weather would be as good tonight.... it wasn't. back to bad winds.

and had to fill in my work appraisal form ...... a bit of a nightmare as we talked about most of the stuff at the beginning of december... but hey.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007


had to be made tonight so i had to come home instead of doing anything; hope the weather's as nice tomorrow!

can't get on to the forum again.... someone seems to have it in for it, depressing!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

feel the walk

a short ride tonight - i was lucky there was still someone there to hold her whilst i got on.

just walk work, and some exercised to get her moving away from my leg, but i was clearly getting there because i could really feel her moving under me, and could feel my seatbones.

so we're getting there.

and the new professional's choice girth had arrived .. amazingly sticky!!!!

Monday, February 12, 2007

ee forums

have been hacked big time. i hope they catch the sicko who's done that and give them hell..... totally horrid.

on the Molly front, did some ground work tonight but didn't work as well as last week. she's standing still facing me. but it takes a while to get there. i feel if i push her too hard on the pressure to go right it might end up going pear shaped. on the other hand, getting her to move her quarters up close (hind leg crossing) seemed to work. trouble is, of course, it's still only from the left. i suppose we'll get there. if partner comes home early enough she's going to see the dvd and why i want to have richard maxwell work with her .... but i think i'm half way there as i said yesterday she could video it, she said good idea (but that she made a pig's ear of videoing a christening whilst she was away.... she doesn't really do technology, lack of patience to see how things work!)

Sunday, February 11, 2007

the weather relented

teemed down all day yesterday, but stopped today and was sunny this afternoon.

and I got sitting trot. I wasn't trying for sitting trot, but found myself doing it, and i could momentarily feel my seat bones moving with the horse and i definitely wasn't bouncing. YAY. that's the first time ever.

apart from that, I was again thinking about my position, but added in some attempts at getting molly to move her quarters away from the leg (i.e., aiming for turn on the forehand) just sitting, putting the o/s leg on and her head slightly flexed to the inside. at the start i had to bend her more but we were getting there and you could certainly feel the improvement underneath me as well.

was on her for an hour, but not just trotting round and working a sweat up. lots of walk, small circles, then some trot to try and get the slow low rise (still not got it on the horse, even if i can get it on the equisimulator, but getting there....)

i need to start working on sitting straight again, i can feel myself leaning forwards which of course i shouldn't be..

must get a balance strap sorted out on the front of the saddle, that'll help me loads

but i was very pleased with both of us.

and having got richard maxwell's dvd running (had to clean my dvd player ....) learnt an awful lot about in hand work, not just the rope circling with training halter ... better in many ways that the one that's generally recommended, richard hinrichs (which i bought a few months ago); i can see the start better if you see what i mean.

hopefully the weather will stay fine this week; i think for now my plan is ground work in whatever form after work, and riding at the weekend..

Friday, February 09, 2007

back to routine

of wet weather .... really i suppose we're getting off lightly at the moment, hard frosts but not too bad for snow, and the frost made the roads better, better traction on frozen bumpy snow than on icy compacted snow... and not much of it. but didn't muck out till tonight what with being so late last night i was behind hand this morning, and I hate mucking out round the horse (even if she doesn't mind!) always worrying in case she moves and gets accidentally pronged. never happened yet and don't want it ever to, but can't help worrying about it. that's another toruble with rubber matting. you can't leave it even one night as you can a full shavings bed.

nothing done with her of course, no point even thinking about it...

Thursday, February 08, 2007

airport information boards

chocolate fireguard would be more use.
checked it all online before i left the house, no reported problems.

a minuted after the flight was supposed to land, they said it was delayed .. turned out it hadn't left Amsterdam!!!!!!! duh. eventually arrived 1 hour late .... only just got in.

nice new earrings though.....

snow; deep frost between my leaving the house at 2010 and getting back now.

but those southerners are having it a lot worse... wimps (they don't expect snow and don't know what to do with it........she says with northern snob head on!)

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


it was bone chilling tonight; colder than the last two nights, and my warm cosy thick fleecy lined jacket wasn't keeping it out. i had been planning on doing some more ground work with molly, but i thought if i'm that cold it ain't fair to take her rug off.. anyway, i don't think i would have got warmed up.... so she just got fed.

snow forecast, and that usually warms it up a fraction, but we'll see.

partner due back from phillippines tomorrow ... shall take fleecy coats/hats etc to the airport with me!!!!!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

more groundwork

but not as effective in some ways.

she still is thinking about standing still in her own space, but doesnt really want to. as im typing this i have realised something has gone adrift with the keypad on this lap top, what should be the apostrophe is openeing the find function... duh? and it was too too cold. forecast for -5C (27 F or thereabouts) and snow. see how it goes over the week!

and there is only one richard maxwell... see .... you get the man himself....

Monday, February 05, 2007

ground work

i said on saturday i'd been watching richard maxwell's new dvd at my friends (have now just ordered my own....)

so the plan for tonight was to make a start on that, borrowed rope halter from friend and put my (too long) rope on it

but of course i'd forgotten that she can't even stand still in her own space in teh arena ... she starts circling round me as soon as i've shut the gate and moved into the middle!

so i decided the first thing to do was not, clearly set away from a stand - but to teach turning in to stand from out on the circle.

difficult to explain if you haven't watched his work (and of course i've only watched the dvd ...) essentially its the circling work with the rope, using to apply pressure by spinning the rope.

so she sets off, then after acouple of circuits (or even just one) I spin it very fast which moves her quarters out, turns her in and she stands.

by the finish she was really starting to think about it and realise that i wanted her to turn in and stand facing me.

so i finished after 10 minutes i think it was and she was indeed thinking about it and had stood. Assuming the weather stays ok, that's the plan for the rest of the week and i'll ride again at the weekend.

i wish I'd known more about richard maxwell's work when i first got her, i would have had him out straight away

as it is, having found out the cost, i don't think i can afford it AND have a holiday, and if i don't have the holiday (we've been invited to France for a christening, and given that i haven't gone to the phillippines and the christening is the son of some friends.....) i'll be very very unpopular.

hey ho.

Jean, the bit is a mullen mouth snaffle at the moment. did have her in a myler but the mullen mouth has been more successful. Mind, i've been thinking about going back to the myler to see. and i really do want to try the Pelham.

now, completely off topic ... i've been writing this whilst watching a programme called Monster moves on Channel 5 - all about moving two churches, one had to go through the middle of Sarasota (it's steeple and the rectory also went, separately!!!!). they say next week we'll be watching an entire town!!!!!!

Sunday, February 04, 2007


if i can get the trot right she starts to come right; the difficulty is getting it right after the initial rush off.

but i really felt we were making some progres again tonight. if i can be consistent in getting it right which slows her down then we'll get to the point where we can have that from first picking up trot!

should have taken my saddle with me yesterday, definitely; took a while to decide what stirrup lengthy i wanted. and i think i shoudl have got some large knee rolls, not small ones (what did i know, never used them before...)

longer of course put me deeper and the walk was consequentially better, but that was too long at the moment for trot ....

and rein length is interesting. a difficult balance given her previous bitting issues between short enough to be right and yet not too short and end up with an argument about it ...

think we're getting there on that one as well.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

equisimulator refresher

went down to wakefield again .... wel worth while. should have taken my own saddle, we'd decided i needed as Nicola had a fhoenix of course, but had i done so we could have set mine up re. the knee rolls. i have small ones, and i was practising with large ones.

stirrups went longer again

and i got the canter

so looking forward to putting that into practice. Plus, nicola said i was a lot straighter than the first time I went, so whatever i'm doing, i'm doing right...

and she's thinking baout whether or not to come up and give me a lesson on molly; could prove pricey for me, it's a fraction under 9o miles each way, but her OH helpfully pointed out that he's from just up the road from me (and used to mountain bike where i used to ride!) so he suggested a useful trip up for him to see mates. i offered to pay a tank of petrol, cheaper than the mileage rate!!!!

on the way down i'd stopped off at richmnond equestrian centre and caught my mate doing her first test (horse popped out of arena in canter, not helpful!) but she got some nice marks from thejudge, and her second test, which i missed of course, she came third in the class. So both horses are nearly qualified for national trailblazers at stoneleigh, so they're pleased

went to see them on the way back, nice lunch in local pub, but made one error .. we should have gone to get her feed before we went to the pub, as her saddler/feed store had a sale on; only in fact got there in time to pick up her feed. but then, i've spent enough.... LOL.

and then she has Richard Maxwell's new DVD, maximise your horse's potential, lots of food for thought there, i was really pleased to see it and will now try again on molly going right, using those techniques which are easier to grasp when seen....

only got home at 8pm .. happily knew i'd be late so organised someone else to bring the horse in.

and it was a gorgeous day ... once the sun came up ... if you were in the sun it was lovely, but apart from that there was a hard frost first thing this morning and there's another one building now, it's coooold out there...

Friday, February 02, 2007


of goodies to go with the saddle had in fact been sent to the local agent, who far from letterin herself be confined to barracks, is up and about and tonight was taking a clinic on lateral work..... and she'll hav eplates in permanently. I met the dog that did the damage. a labradoodle, golden.

anyway, still the girth to come, but the wintec i'm using at th eminute seems ok, if not quite as non slip as the new one. I shallbe most pleased tobe able to use the leathers & stirrups; adapting ordinary leathers to work when you should have dressage leathers is seriously uncomfortable.

so since i didn't leave work until 50 minutes after finishing time, all molly got was her tea...

Thursday, February 01, 2007

45 minutes

on molly for that length of time, happily there were people about which was good.

it's been a really nice day here, almost spring (well, you'd have thought...) and the evening was just as good.

we did some trot and a lot of walk. i concluded i needed the leathers down one again....

i was thinking about my position again, but also about getting molly responsive to me, which meant i had to think about where my weight was. at one point we almost got a lateral move .... i've never been totally sure she understands them .... and a fair few small circles as well.

overall i was quite pleased....

interestingly, after i got off i thought i'd run the stirrups up .. guess what, no i can't go round to her right side to do that whilst we're in the arena.... duh.