Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Winning And Losing

It's amazing how often winning and losing happen at the exact same time. That's kind of how my weekend went and sometimes my life in general seems to follow this pattern.
Happy ears
Some friends and I loaded up the trailers and went to a mini trial on Sunday. It was called the "Backyard Horse Trial" and it pretty much lived up to its name. I had a blast though. Loki was so good, probably the best he's been at a show to date.

I didn't ride the greatest for our dressage test and the arena was literally formed by poles laying on the ground so we almost jumped out twice. That will rattle you! I never even did see my test but apparently it was good enough to put us in 2nd place. Not our best by far but could've been worse.

Warm up for XC was a total zoo. Four fences side by side with two being jumped in one direction and the other two being jumped in the opposite direction put a whole new spin on crazy for warm-up. Unfortunately there was one accident. I didn't see it but a girl came off and did not move. They eventually took her out in an ambulance and I haven't heard anything since. I really hope that she is okay. That happened right before Loki and I went out on course and it rattled me pretty well so our first three or four fences weren't the best. I was very tense but we made it over and then got on a roll. I was actually able to let him out and run. It was so much fun!
Stadium was a very small course, only 7 jumps with a very easy design. So I really have no excuse for this but somehow I skipped a fence! We were rolling and everything was going so smoothly that I think I just got too happy. When the judge blew the whistle I knew immediately what I'd done. DUH!!! Oh well, we would've been in second but instead we got the big E.

But overall it was so much of a win. My horse is sound, we were working well together and it was just a beautiful day. The ribbon would've been nice but honestly it was kind of funny. You just gotta laugh at yourself sometimes!
I think we might need some bigger things to jump!
Sadly, this is it for us for the year and possibly for quite a while. I think next year we will try to do some more mini-trials but the big events are just too expensive for us right now. In many ways the mini-trials are a lot more fun. You get everything done in one day rather than sitting around waiting. At our level doing everything in one day is very doable.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

The Offender

I know it is Saturday and most people are out doing fun things but I have a few moments before I have to take the kids to their football games so I figured I'd squeeze a post in, but it will be a quickie. :)

I figured I'd show you Loki's splint. I'm not joking when I say it is huge. It is HUGE! I'm a little embarrassed to even show it because as you know I am riding him again but he is sound and who knows when or even if it will ever go down to some semblance of normal. Every professional I've talked to has said to go ahead and start riding/working him but it still makes me feel very self conscious. Luckily I can wear boots most of the time, just not in the dressage ring, otherwise he never goes without at least a pair of splint boots. I suppose that is a little like closing the barn door after the cows get out but at least it will help to prevent another.

Why hello huge, ugly bump. I'm pretty sure that is not how a horse leg is supposed to look.
But aside from his leg flaw Loki is a picture of health right now.
Hopefully this thing will remold and go down soon!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Right Moment

Wow, first of all let me just apologize for disappearing for so long. I didn't mean to take quite so long of a break but one thing after another kept happening and before you know it it is the end of September. The kids are in school now and we have football and cheerleading practices, girl scouts and boy scouts meetings and every evening I have is booked with the exception of Fridays. We spend all day Saturdays cheering on 1st-4th graders as they play football and cheer. It's time consuming but it is also a lot of fun so I'm not complaining, really.

As well as the busyness on the home front things were a little slow and somewhat depressing on the horse front. Loki and I went to do our class at the dressage show on the 26th of July and he was suddenly very, very lame. Karen from over on Contact was the dressage judge. I didn't get a chance to stop by to say hi because I was preoccupied with my lame horse, unfortunately. She's a really nice gal, though!

Soaking the right front and icing the left front with my little helper
Long story short Loki was off for a good two to three weeks. The next morning after the show he had a HUGE, like golf ball sized, splint on his left front but he was actually off on the right front. The vet saw him but I opted not to do x-rays right away and instead waited to see how he did with the standard, bute, icing, cold hosing, wrapping, etc treatment.

Well, he finally started looking sound and with the advice of my trainer I started him back in very light work. For a couple of weeks we simply walked with a little bit of trot and slowly built from there. The last two weeks he has felt like his old self.

The Chiro came out to see some other horses at our barn and was able to fit Loki in and he discovered that Loki was very "out" in a few places along his back. He showed me where he was pretty sore and actually had started developing a little bit of a "roach" on one side of his back. However, everything was "fixable." He said that Loki must have done something violent, probably out in the pasture, to injure himself this badly. He felt pretty confident that the splint and his back soreness all happened at the same time. He also said this was the biggest splint he's ever seen. :(

But, again long story somewhat shorter, Loki is now completely sound and while his leg looks really ugly the splint is cold and "dead" and will hopefully start to remold and look a little better soon. (It's seriously hideous!)

We've started jumping again, light at first of course but built to our first xc school today. It was amazing. Loki had been a real PITA the first two times I seriously jumped him (more than just a bitty crossrail) after his "vacation" and I had no idea what to expect but he was really, really good. In fact he was so good that we jumped this:
It's either a maxed novice jump or small training. I've only jumped it once before for the picture above but Loki and I just sailed over it twice like it was nothing. I really wish I had a picture of us.  I'm pretty sure this is the biggest or at least most intimidating fence we've ever jumped together. But the whole day was just one awesome ride after another and I really needed it. It was definitely the "right" moment, finally, and that is why I finally found the energy to blog again.

So that is what's been happening in a nut shell. There are plenty of other details left out and I've probably screwed the timeline up a bit but I think you can get the gist of what's been happening.

Sorry again for the disappearing act!