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Saturday, June 11, 2011

Testing Testing...?

Testing out mobile blogging!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Saddle Update

Hi everyone ( if i have any readers left!) sorry for the silence, I don't have Internet access at home anymore, and haven't found a mobile blogging app I like yet.

Anyhow, I got my new saddle, and it fits!! I only had time to do a quick lap around the property before deciding I needed to take advantage of the warm weather and gave Honey a bath the day it arrived.

I have since taken it out a couple of times, and am just as happy as I thought I would be with it. I have some nice pictures but can't figure out how to get them up from my iPhone (do you know how??)

I'm also in the middle of an unsuspected career change. I'm trying to start my own business. I have a way to go yet, but I'll get there.

I'll try to be back soon... hopefully I can get this mobile blogging thing figured out!


Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Never Ending Tack Story


No, I'm not talking about the the movies. I'm talking about my saddle quest and that it may be over (I hope hope hope so).

Since ordering my new saddle I haven't been able to stop checking the status through the UPS website. After no updates to it's status yesterday, I looked at it today and it says that it is "Out for delivery". Yaaaay!!!! It should be waiting for me when I get home. It's going to be the longest day at work EVER!

Can't wait can't wait can't wait!

It's taking everything I have in me to refrain from buying a set of polo wraps and new pad just so I can have a matching set! Well, that and the fact that I'm kind of 'over' the hot pink pad I got, lol. I still haven't decided on colors for her, it's a toss up between burgundy and sticking with a classic white.

I had considered doing something louder like a royal purple, or red, but decided against it. I'm afraid the same thing would happen with those colors that happened to my pink pad... I would become annoyed by their loudness!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Proud To Be Bitless

As I mentioned in my last post about the gymkhana there were some (actually quite a few) moments that just made me cringe. Most abundant was the rampant yanking on mouths with shank bits. The greater majority of riders (young and older) used little to no leg or seat aids and relied soley on the reins.

I've cropped out some of the pictures that were emailed to me by the show's photographer to give better detail of what I'm talking about.

Please don't get me wrong, I'm not totally opposed to bits, but I am totally against them being used incorrectly, which oftem borders on abusivly. But honestly, the more I think about it the less I like the idea of pulling a horse around by a metal bar in their mouth. In so many cases having a bit in their mouth actually makes a horse more upset, fearfull ad ready to bolt (less likely to listen) than a horse in a halter. If they fear your aids you are really fighting a losing battle. And who the heck wants riding to be a battle anyway? I sure don't!!

All hands, no seat
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Trying to evade, but can't due to the tie down.
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High head, trying to avoid the pain.
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All hands again.
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Yank is face off cowboy.
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No seat, all hands and a very tight hold. (This is at a canter)
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Not really sure what to say about this one other than ouch. Photobucket


These horses give their all for their riders and are pushed, pulled, spurred, yanked and whipped seemingly with little rhyme or reason behind it.
Be on the lookout next spring for Honey and I to be doing this sans bit.

More Gymkhana Pictures

I was sent a few more pictures from the gymkhana and thought I would share some of my favorites. Images are at full resolution so you should be able to click on them to view larger.

One of the young riders. This is one you have to click on to get the total image. Look at how calm this girls face is as her horse starts his run.



Nice to see a smile!


This is one of those story book kind of shots... It's my favorite so far.


Followed by a close second...



So far I've only seen the one shot of me, I may ask if he has any more he can share.
Unfortunately there were also a fair amount of horses over bitted and over excited there as well. Seeing the expressions on some of the horses faces really made me cringe. It makes me want to work that much harder with Honey and compete bitless at this event next year.

Monday, December 6, 2010

For Denali...

As most (if not all) of you know a dear fellow blogger and horse mom is enduring a tremendous amount of hardship this holiday season. She has been on one heck of a roller coaster ride both physical as well as emotional battling for the well being of her mare Denali. I, like many of you I'm sure, wish there were more I could do to help.

What I want to do is this; 25% of the sale price for each bridle or halter I sell will be donated to Denali's Mom, just mention 'Denali' when ordering if you go through eBay.

If you don't need/want a bridle I can also do rope halters (with or without the nose knots).

My website is listed in the upper left-hand side of this blog (www.rydembitless.webs.com) but feel free to post requests to the comments, or email me directly at rydembitless@yahoo.com. Right now I'm only offering my rope tack in BLACK.

I accept PayPal or checks, but will hold shipment until payments clears.

Back to the point of this post, we as fellow horse people and dare I say friends (I have grown to consider some of you, my readers and those I follow, to be friends despite the distance) should do our best to support and uplift each other in any way we can, be it words of support, a joke to raise spirits or monetary donations where possible and well deserved. I'm not very good with the former, so I'm going to take a shot at fundraising, because I know they are going to a good woman doing the right thing for her horse. She should be applauded, and an example should be made. We always here about the bad owners, so let's hear it for the GOOD one here!

If nothing else I ask that you send, or continue to sent your thoughts and prayers their way.

Run Run RUN!

We had the last gymkhana for the year last weekend. I entered three events ad rode my aunt's new mare Sissy, just to see how she would do, and had a lot of fun. We ran barrels, poles 2 and single stake. We didn't do great, but we ran clean (less one pole knocked down in poles 2) and had a good time. I have a feeling she's done poles before because on our approach I had to keep her from weaving on her own (the pattern required to run to the last pole, weave down then up and run home) and was even able to take the last two or three poles at a canter.

Here are some pictures from the day. There are some pretty impressive young riders in this group. The youngest pictured is just 5 and this was her first day running off lead line (though her mom was jogging the course out in front).


Below: This is Lizzy on her Arab mare Fury. These two are such a great team to watch, I really enjoy seeing their great partnership. Fury really knows her job and Lizzy is a great rider. When they are in the arena they are totally 'on' and the moment it's over they walk out as if nothing even happened.







The white guy pictured below (I don't know the rider or horse personally) is shown making his last career run. He is now retired from gymkhana at the tender age of 26. They had some amazing runs that day too.




This little girl blows me away every single time. Talk about guts, she is in the 10 & under class and rides horses I wouldn't even think about getting on.

Below is little Sarah, age 5. She is Lizzy's little sister (I know, no helmet drives me crazy!) and looks like she'll be following in her bib sis's footsteps.
I'm looking forward to next year, now that I'm starting to get back into the loop here locally. I really want to work on pleasure classes with Honey, and continue working with Sissy for games.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Saddle Fitting

I came across these videos today and just HAD to share them with you. I'm very new to the world of english riding, so this was very informative for me. I hope it is helpful or at least interesting to you!

Here are the 9 Steps to Saddle Fitting (all of the videos are pretty short, all are worth watching!)

.:Balance:.



.:Wither Clearence:.



.:Channel Width:.


.:Full Panel Contact:.



.:Billet Allignment:.



.:Saddle length:.



.:Saddle Straightness:.



.:Tree Angle:.



.:Tree Width:.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Mmm... Pony Slurpee

I know that I've mentioned here what I feed Bun (aka Honey, Honey Bun, Hun Bun...) in the way of supplements, but I thought I'd take the time to actually show you too.

It's a pretty basic supplement routine, nothing fancy but it keeps her looking good and she LOVES it.


I start with about 12oz regular alfa-mo (alfalfa-molasses blend).

I add to that 1 cup of Natural Glow stabilized rice bran pellets.

The pellets are two different sizes because I bought a different brand and wanted to make the change gradual, rather than just swapping them out all at once. The content was the same, but I didn't want to take any chances.

All in the bucket, welcome to the party!

Next up is the power player, her Vita Flex Accel
I love this stuff, it's packed with good stuff including fat and water soluble vitamins, chelated and conventional minerals and trace minerals, and is fortified with 14 amino acids and naturally occurring direct-fed microbial cultures. I was introduced to it by her trainer Sharen (who btw I don't know if I've mentioned it or not is doing outstanding) when she had Honey at her place for training last spring.

Honey is currently getting 1 oz daily as she is in very light work thanks to my full time job and the short (and cold) winter days. If she were in heavier work the dose would be doubled.

Into the bucket it goes!
That usually does it for the supplements, unless it's the last week of the month. On the last week of each month I top it off with a dose of whole psyllium husks to help prevent sand colic. So far it's working.

Once I have all my dry ingredients I fill the bucket 1/2 to 2/3 with water and stir (this is where the Slurpee part comes from, named by Sharen).

Doesn't that look good?

Honey sure thinks so! I had to feed it to her through the door from the feed room to her pasture in order to have (just barely) enough light to photograph.
"Don't bother me..."
"... I'm eating."
She slurps it down and licks the bucket clean every time. I also love it because it is a great way to get extra water into her (not that I worry about her water intake, she is a waterholic!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Action Shots

Here are some action shots of Honey from Saturday before I hauled her over to my aunt's to babysit her mule Dusty so we could ride the pony girls.


It was such a nice day and she was feeling good, so I had her move out a bit and tried to get some action shots with my cell.
This first series was me just free lunging her around her pasture. Not spectacular, but I do love the half shot I got with her mane in the air.
This second series cracks me up. It show a miscommunication on my part, and her clear reaction to my mistake.
I meant to call her in for a smaller circle around me, but instead of only patting my leg I spoke "c'mon" which usually means for her to simply come to me. Stupidly I sent her away instead of letting her come and stand with me. The first two pictures show her happily coming in thinking she gets a break, and the third... oh the third. It shows the look on her face when I raise my arm and send her our for another lap.
Honey: "Yay I get to stop!""Here I come like the good girl I am!"
"What?! Eff-YOU lady!!!"She continued on very nicely despite my mistake and was rewarded with stopping the next time around. I sure am lucky she is so forgiving of my brain dead moments!

I swear I'll bring my real camera to the barn one of these days!!