Monday, December 21, 2015

Stressful Sunday

Sunday was quite stressful for me and I wont bore with the details...but it was filled with a lot of good things too. I am choosing to focus on the positives :)

I FINALLY got my truck back from being fixed! YAY!! After months of it sitting because I was going off of a dealership quote that was ridiculously high, I finally found a trustworthy mechanic through word of mouth that was able to do it at half the cost. I am so beyond happy to have it back I almost cried.
Nighttime photo...hard to see :(
So some other stressful things happened and when things started settle, I decided to squeeze in a dressage lesson with C to de-stress since her lessons always have a knack for soothing any anxieties (riding and non riding). Lucky for me she had an opening!

Tillie knew what was up when the BOT blanket came out and was not entirely thrilled...
maybe if I dont look at her she cant see me?
In my excitement to add some positives to my day, I got the barn a bit early and gave Tillie a spa day complete with trimming her mane and brushing out her tail. She LOVED her tail being brushed and was literally following me with her butt so I could scratch it.

I got done a little early so decided to go help with the first dragging of our NEW footing! This stuff is so has rubber in it and Im told riding on it is so elastic and wonderful! This is our smaller "dressage" ring and our larger ring is supposed to also get some as well.

New footing!! EEK!!
Once that was done, it was time to load up. This is the first time I hooked up my truck to my trailer...The wiring was all recently redone on the trailer and I was disappointed at first to find the lights not 100%. BUT with some cleaning, they all worked!! YAY! I also noticed I need a bit more of a drop hitch to get my trailer sitting more level. But it was good enough to get us the short ride to C.

Tillie was a bit skeptical to load on this trailer as its a bit narrower then the others we have been in lately. She just sort of hesitated once on the ramp, sniffed around to make sure all was fine and then loaded on. I really need to make a point to teach her to self load...she close, but not quite there yet.

You can see how not level my trailer is here.

Once there, Tillie was a cool calm customer. I think shes starting to get this all down and taking it in stride. C had to go turn out and bring horses in so we had 15 minutes to play in the indoor on our own and I really wish I had gotten a photo...but I had left my phone in the truck knowing I was by myself for this lesson and didnt have my trusty friends this time to get video.

As soon as I picked up rein contact she started trying to root. She tends to go in phases with this it seems...she'll try to do it to evade, realize it doesnt work and it will go away for a while, but it always surfaces again. It irritates me to no end because she'll do it especially when I allow for the free walk or try for stretchy trot which Ill touch on a bit later in this post. 

Tillie says its all good as long as I have hay

So after some additional warm up when C returned, we touched on me trying to open and close my elbows more in trot since Tillie now is consistent enough in the bridle, I have to work on being more quiet with my arms and not lock my elbows. It felt a bit ridiculous, but C had me look in the mirror and it was totally normal. LOL funny how that works.

Her right lead canter was on point, left lead she felt a bit down hill and falling in a bit. C wasnt too concerned and decided to have us try running through a few training level tests for an upcoming dressage show in Jan. we would like to attend.

We talked about the differences of test riding - corners vs circles and since Tillie does corners so well, to show them off when not riding the circle portions.

So then went through 2 different ones to see which worked better for us. We went through USDF Training level test 2 first and it worked quite well for us. There is a lot going on in this test, but C liked it because there was a lot of time to allow for preparation for each movement. I liked it because there were a lot of circles, changing rein etc which means I can ride Tillie more forward and start showing off her trot and canter without her building too much.

The stretchy trot and free walk each time she tried rooting which C gave me tips to correct, but said not to over stress it since she thinks its her learning to likes opening her throat latch, albeit rude...yes correct it but by pushing forward not using rein.

C was so excited about her right lead canter and remarked "it is on fire today!" haha. Left lead wasnt as sharp but definitely started feeling better and more balanced by the end of this test.

So then we moved on to try USDF Training level test 1 which C was concerned would invite Tillie to build with the canter being somewhat on a straight line and the transitions happening right in front of the judge.

Shockingly, she did the test quite well and by riding into the corners helped half halt her quite well. We both agree though, test 2 would be the better choice and we would try test 3 next lesson before we go.

All done! Isnt she just the cutest! 
I ended up staying for a bit after to watch C ride her new 3 almost 4 yr old baby and it was lovely!

Unfortunately, the weather isnt looking too promising this week, so not sure how many new updates Ill have :(


  1. Hopefully life stops stressing you. And it sounds like you and Tillie had a great lesson!

    1. She was so consistent! Definitely helped some stress fade away :)

  2. Yay! Glad the truck is back and cost you less than anticipated.

    1. Me too! haha driving the little car has been less then fun when youre use to a big truck!

  3. Yay for truck and lesson! Hope whatever is stressing you sorts itself out soon.

    1. Thank you :) just typical adult things lol wouldnt it be nice to not have to deal with real life things!?

  4. glad it was a good lesson! exciting to be working on tests too. hopefully you'll be able to put them in action for a judge soon ;)

  5. Focus on the positives - otherwise you'll go crazy! haha. I'm glad you had a wodnerful lesson.

    1. I am trying to! Dwelling definitely quickly leads to a downward spiral and I dont want to be back in a dark place like earlier this year. Thanks for the positive remarks!