Wordless Wednesday: Yep, It’s Still Winter

Charlie the Standardbred

A Horsey 2018!

Simon the Tennessee Walker

Happy New Year!

I’ve been thinking a lot about the past year and the coming year and what I want to accomplish.  2017 was the first year in a LONG time that I didn’t set any resolutions.  I used to do a fantastic job of setting them and checking in on them every month to see how I was progressing.  But I reached a time where I was growing quickly, and my life was changing in ways that I couldn’t foresee; resolutions set in January weren’t really applicable by June, let alone December.

For example, at the beginning of 2017 I had Simon boarded and ZERO intentions of ever moving him out to the farm.  By the end of 2017, not only was Simon out at the farm, but I’d adopted Charlie and had him out there, too!

For 2018, I think I’m going to keep focusing on themes (long-term intentions) and micro goals (goals set for anywhere from a week to a month at a time).

Horse Themes

I want the horses to be healthy and happy in 2018, and I want to enjoy my time with them.  Right now, I’m imagining some pleasure riding with Simon and retraining Charlie to be a pleasure horse as well.  I want to expand my experimentation, re: movement rehab, on them.  I want to invest in their health with regular chiropractic visits, dental work, etc.

I want to progress my riding skills.  I started taking western lessons in the Fall of 2017, and I plan to continue those.  I would love to get back into saddleseat riding and maybe try more huntseat as well.  But most importantly, I want to feel confident and competent in the saddle.

Horse Goals

My goals for this week are just for all of us to stay alive.  It’s cold and snowy and icy out.

10AM on January 1, 2018. Brrrrrrrr!!

This means keeping the horses in their stalls when it’s bitterly cold, keeping hay in front of them to help warm them up and entertain them, and hauling hot water out to the barn.

I’ve been working them lightly — just enough to establish a routine (and nip Charlie’s wannabe-buddy-sour attitude right in the bud) and make their brains work.  Charlie’s learning how to lunge and getting acquainted with the various verbal cues I use.  Simon’s getting the extra challenge of staying focused whilst Charlie screams from the barn.  We’ve worked lunging at a walk (including over our “ground pole” aka a large branch), ground manners, parking out, and yielding the shoulders or the hips.  All-in-all, it gets them moving and thinking and reminds them that they DO occasionally have a job besides standing around and stuffing their faces.

“What is this ‘whoa‘ you speak of, and does it mean ‘belligerently trot really fast?'”

This week I’ll also be laying in supplies.  Charlie’s new blanket and supplement (Uckele Tri Amino) arrived today, and I reordered more of the Uckele G.U.T to start him on that, too.  I’m picking up a load of hay on Saturday since we’re going through it so quickly between it being cold and Charlie being, y’know, starved.  I’ll also be stocking up on grain and buying a couple different brands of pine bedding to see if they’re better than what I’m currently getting.

Looking Forward

Overall, I’m really excited about 2018.  I have no idea what’s in store, but I’m sure it’s gonna be fun!

Merry Christmas!