To ride dressage is to dance with your horse, equal partners in the delicate and sometimes difficult work of creating harmony and beauty.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


I've agreed to help someone get their horse loaded in a trailer tomorrow. The horse, a young Morgan I met and rode once a year ago, is too green and skittish for his owner's experience and comfort level, so she is moving him from the stable where she never rides him to her mom's acreage. The Morgan's owner wants a quiet, dependable horse for occasional trail rides; I found her young Morgan to be very much like Axel, my old Morgan dancing partner. It is too early to know what will come of this, but a possible trade has been discussed. The lady is coming tomorrow morning to meet Russell before we move her horse. Gulp.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

The view is better from here

Rick stripped and rebedded the sheep fold and all the horse stalls today (yes, it is totally appropriate to applaud right now!). When he was ready to do Russell's stall, he suggested I hand-walk him and let him eat some grass. After a bit Rick called out that Russell's stall was ready, so we headed back to the barn. But Rick met us on the driveway and said he wanted to look at Russell. I was mystified when he tied the end of Russell's lead rope to his halter ring - then he offered to give me a leg up! He said I could sit on him and let him eat some more grass, and even walk him around in the arena 5-10 minutes. I don't have to tell you how wonderful it was to be astride, even for just a few minutes. The view is just better from the back of a horse!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Still here

Last night Rick gave Russell his second (of three) extracorporeal shockwave treatments. Russell has been moving around comfortably on his left hind in his stall and paddock, but we won't know how it's healing until ultrasounding it after his third treatment.

It's a good time for Russell to be laid up. We've gotten twice the average precipitation for March so far, so the arena is swamped and there have been very few breaks in the rain when we could have saddled up. Trying to look on the bright side here!

Monday, March 7, 2011

At the show

Although Russell and I couldn't go to the ball, my friend Debbie represented Third Level well, showing Test 1 Saturday and Sunday. I was there to coach her on Sunday (thank goodness she did a little better that day, or I'd sure look bad as a coach!) and put in some hours volunteering. Being an early-season league show (named "Bears Above the Ground" for the woolly horses), most of the riders there were showing at Intro, Training and First levels. There was a delightful assortment of dancing partners; besides warmbloods and thoroughbreds there were Morgans, Paints, Arabs, Friesian crosses, two mules and a Percheron named T. Rex - hee!

I took a few photos while Debbie warmed up her lovely little TB mare Ivy; enjoy.