dancing horses

dancing horses

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Winter Frolic

Before I had the saddle fitting I had ridden Carmen (in Irish's saddle) and things were definitely on the right trajectory. What was most telling in that ride was that she started being very tight and spooky and I just kept working on the plan. At one point she bolted and I was unable to stop her right away. However I was completely unfazed. I yelled to Cynthia- sorry no steering (we were heading right for them) and turned her in a circle. Once she calmed a bit I kept the canter going up and down the ring until she was ready to slow down and then I kept it going a bit more and then we went to trot and walk. She snorted and blew out and that was the end of her reactions. Somewhere along the line I have become used to her reactions and have learned to ride them. Phew. We had a good schooling session and finished with a hack around the fields. 

Friday we had a bit of snow (about 6 cms) but it was light and fluffy snow so was a bit higher. It was the kind of snow that you can sweep instead of shovel. Cynthia and Andrew were coming that night our curling game (we're in a friday night league) and I sent her a text: "if you stay over we can ride in the morning in fluffy snow".  And that's just what they did. Ed asked me how I could ride if the ring was frozen. I told him that in this kind of snow the ring is the base and the snow is the footing. 

The morning was beautiful- the air was cold but still and the sky was stunning (promising the winter storm that was coming Saturday night). After a couple cups of coffee we got dressed and headed out to the barn. I was looking forward to riding in my saddle now that it fits. 

I lunged Carmen first and she was a bit silly. However, it was not too serious and I only lunged her for a few minutes. At first she was a bit a 'up' but calmed down after a bit. Irish was feeling quite perky and his whole face was proclaiming 'yay, let's have some FUN'.  The first time Cynthia asked for a trot transition he hopped straight up in the air and launched into his trot. It was adorable. I told Cynthia that when he was younger and did that it was accompanied by a squeal. 
most adorable snow horse ever

I don't know why I get so excited about riding in the snow but I do. It's like I'm a kid again and I'm all "look at me, I'm riding a horse in the snow and it's AWESOME'.  The footing was perfect. I simply went for a ride and wasn't worried about schooling or training- it was all about the fun (I did continue to reinforce being straight though). After a bit Carmen began to blow and relax and then, oh my god, actually began to enjoy herself. I grabbed my phone and took some photos of Cynthia and then hander it to her to get some photos of us. 



ignore crappy position and look at adorable chestnut ears and the view
I lost all track of time but we finally called it a session and dismounted. Both horses were looking pretty cheery. I took Carmen to a spot where we normally have a graze after a ride and she immediately dove into the snow to grab some of the grass. 

We turned them out and went into the house. Ed was making brunch (bacon and eggs and toast) and I realized I was starving. 

Later Ed and I headed into Halifax to meet up with our kids and go to a Mooseheads Hockey game. We went to the nearby pub for lunch and then the game. Amanda and I bought matching Mooseheads hoodies. It was a good game but unfortunately, Ed and I had to leave the game early because the winter storm started a bit earlier then expected. It took longer to drive home but as long as you went slow it was okay until just about the end. I was happy to get home. (and to the driver of the pickup that drove on the wrong side of the road to pass the line of cars following the snow plow - you are an asshole). 

After I gave the horses their evening care I came back and made myself a hot chocolate and baileys and reflected on my day:
  • riding in the snow
  • lunch in the pub
  • hockey game
  • driving in snow
  • hot chocolate and baileys
Does it get more Canadian than this????

37 comments:

  1. What a wonderful day! Your last sentence sent me into a fit of the giggles haha.

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    1. As I was typing the post I realized how essentially Canadian it was! All I needed was maple syrup....

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  2. Love the pictures! Looks like a lot of fun. The Baileys and hot chocolate sounds great.

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    1. It's delicious and warms your belly.

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  3. It literally doesn't get more Canadian than that! I'm actually going to Vancouver to visit friends next week but I know they won't have any snow like you get back east!

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    1. No but there can get to snow by driving in the mountains and they get spring much earlier!

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  4. It sounds like a good day to me! I too get super excited about riding in the snow. I haven't had a chance to do it yet this winter and I hope to change that tomorrow! Also, nice work staying so calm during that bolt!

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    1. Have fun in the snow. And thanks re: the bolt. they used to freak me out and I bet they still could in the right circumstances.

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  5. Oops, missed the bullet point of Ed making brunch! What a great guy!

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  6. I had that excited feeling last month when the snow was soft! Alas, it has frozen hard enough for me to walk on top of it and is above my horse's knees in places now. What a beautiful view around your place!

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    1. Once it gets hard then it's no fun (except to snowshoe). After the storm it's too deep now to ride in

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  7. You have the perfect amount of snow right now! We have 2' on the ground and a lot more coming this week. I love riding in it, too. It's hard to describe the joy it brings. Definitely makes you feel like a child again in your happiest place! It appears Carmen felt the same way!

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    1. Well we had the perfect amount of snow - now we have too much.

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  8. What a perfect day! We never get fluffy snow here -- just heavy, wet, icy stuff. Definitely not good for riding. I am jealous -- of your whole day.

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    1. The icy stuff is no fun. On the plus side your winter doesn't last long....:)

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  9. Awwwhhhh - Irish and Carmen had just as much fun in the snow, yippee! :D

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  10. Haha that is so Canadian and so perfect! I am a wimp in winter prefer not to ride but now Im in a challenge again and even though I plan to haul may do a few outside rides here our snow is perfect light and dry but temps are much too cold

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    1. There is definitely a temp where it's just not worth it.

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  11. Mmmm hot chocolate and baileys!! Frolicking in the snow is SO FUN!!

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  12. Very Canadian indeed! Sounds like the perfect day really :)

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  13. I can't believe I'm saying this, but your riding pictures made me really want to go ho,e so that I can ride in the snow. Or to Canada. I loved the winter that I spent in Canada!

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    1. Snow is good but right now it's very cold! I don't mind our winters but I do wish that they were shorter!

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  14. Oops. I accidentally pushed publish before I was finished. I'm glad that you had such a great day! Carmen looks lovely and you both look like you had a fantastic time!

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  15. What a wonderful day! This entire post made me grin from ear to ear. I too love riding in snow! :)

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    1. It's fun playing in the snow- just not shovelling it!

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  16. Those snow photos are magical <3

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    1. If you are dressed properly it is a lot of fun. But not when it gets super cold. Of course my definition of cold may differ from yours....

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  17. That day sounds absolutely idea :) I'm so jealous of you being able to ride in the snow. I haven't had a safe, non-icy snow to ride in for a few years now and I LOVE it too.

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    1. It's not always easy and once the ice is under the snow it's too treacherous. I enjoy it while I can!

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  18. My nutty mare is always better for snow riding, too, and really enjoys herself. I think it's got something to do with such a mundane and quiet landscape. The snow muffles all the "monster noises" and because it's all one color, the "monsters" are obviously absent (or at least she could see one coming from far away?). Regardless, I'm grateful to not have to be on guard for such a magical riding scene.

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    1. Those are great points. I think part of it too is that I am having so much fun that I am transmitting those vibes to her and it helps.

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