Thursday, November 12, 2020

The Woes Of Saddle Fitting

 Stinker was an absolute nightmare to fit, but with the help of my fabulous Florida saddle fitter we were able to get a combination that worked for him and me. I foolish thought that since Karma is a rather straightforward fit in comparison and we already knew what I liked it would be easy.

The first saddle that I was sent was absolutely delicious. It looked good on Karma, but the block was at the wrong angle for my leg. So saddle number two was sent out. And saddle number two is actually worse. It is a bit frustrating doing the fit distance wise, but even without the pandemic it would still be distance because I keep moving and I am definitely not near Florida.

Thankfully, on impulse I picked up a pivo and it has been super helpful. Even more helpful are my wonderful group of internet friends who are willing to tell me if it is the saddle or if I just suck at riding. I am a bit frustrated with my riding but that is a post for another day.

So we are still hunting for the just right combination for me. On the plus side I can ride her bareback. I am taking full advantage of the compliant baby horse stage because the oh so arrogant I don't want to stage shows up.

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Ride Number Two

My big plan for ride number two was to remember to see what I thought about the blocks on the saddle (hint I will be getting a new flap because these blocks are too much and interfere with my thigh). Other than that I didn't have an agenda. I try to let the babies tell me what they are ready for.

I got on and she walked off much better than the first time which pleased me. We walked for a bit and when I remember to ride correctly aka get my right hip out of her back and turn my shoulders her steering improves greatly. So I decided to try a bit of trot.

Oh man the trot felt god awful. I was not helping (apparently not riding for 6 months doesn't magically improve your riding) and she was trotting for the first time with a rider. Thankfully video didn't look as bad as it felt. But we walked regrouped and then tried again. After trotting both ways I hopped off and told her what a wonderful girl she is. She now has a whopping 15 minutes under saddle and has trotted calmly while her pasture mates run around like idiots.

If you are horribly bored the full videos for ride 1 and ride 2 are available. 

Tuesday, August 25, 2020


 I have not so patiently been waiting for my saddle to arrive. After much dickering back and forth I decided to just have my Florida fitter make us a saddle out of spare Wow parts. That way I am not paying new price, I get what I like, and I know it fits Karma. Plus since its a Wow my fitter will just swap parts out as needed and I don't have deal with the hassle of buying and selling saddles as she grows and matures.

Not what waiting patiently looks like

Based on that criteria, I was expecting the normal black dressage saddle to show up. That was not the case. Instead this showed up.

Much delicious

Of course I immediately tried it on Karma (first time saddled). It looked like a pretty good fit and then I realized I forgot my stirrups. So I lunged her to see if the saddle would cause any dramatics. It didn't.

I love this pivo setup outtake

The next day (armed with stirrups this time), I decided to give her first ride a go. I asked the barn owner if she was going to be around but didn't really have a ground person. Karma wasn't too sure she should really walk off with me on her, but with a bit of encouragement she did.

As to be expected the steering was a bit drunk and she was a bit sticky about walking forward at times but overall it was about as perfect as a first ride that I could have hoped for. We walked for about four minutes and then I gave her all the carrots and told her what a wonderful pony she is.

Thursday, August 13, 2020

Bribery Works

 Karma is coming along quite well. She has gotten the hang of the long lines. I still don't have a saddle but I have parked her at the mounting block and laid on her and practiced swinging my leg over her butt. I have taken her down to the road so she can get used to traffic. I have walked her through the the pig farm and fields that are next door her the farm she is at.

The boarding barn is great exposure for her. There are calves, turkeys, children, farm equipment, four wheelers, and all sorts of other things. While I miss my trails so so so much, it is really good for her to be at a much busier place. My barn was so quiet that I think I would have had a lot harder with desensitizing her when we started going places.

I am going out three days a week typically and we really aren't doing much. No more than 20 minutes in the ring. So she gets lots of grazing and grooming time where we just chill. I typically will drive her for 5-10 minutes then turn her loose to play with cantering and voice commands for another 5-10 minutes. The up transitions are pretty good, but sometimes sassy mare gets the zooms and the downs aren't quite there. Luckily I have my fail safe of snap a carrot and she comes right to me (as demonstrated in the GIF). Hopefully my saddle will arrive in the next couple of weeks and then I will have more to blog about (aka OMG GUYS LOOK AT MY ADORABLE PONY!!!!)

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Learning of Sorts

Babies are fun for me but killer for blog content. There is no fun and exciting way to tell we trotted a couple circles and then went for a walk. But Karma is coming along quite nicely.

She is quirky about her ears especially the right one and I was concerned it might make her hard to bridle. Nope not an issue. In fact she is much easier than Cowboy, who is 19 years old. Not quite as easy as Stinker but he literally shoves his face in the bridle so as long as you don't miss the mouth with the bit he basically bridles himself.

Ideally I would like to put a few rides on her this fall and then give her the winter off to grow(?) (please please please grow). I am half heartedly working on getting a saddle. I also need to get her a bridle that fits before Aimee disowns me.

And I should get a vest because baby girl has moves. Hopefully those moves never show up under saddle but I like to plan for the worst and hope for the best. For the most part we are just plugging along doing baby pony stuff and hoping for more growing.

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Better Late Than Never

Karma turned three back in June. She got her extra carrots on her birthday, but sadly her party hat and birthday sash didn't arrive in time. Amazon got really sketchy with their "two" day deliveries. I finally got pictures a week or so later and then did nothing with them.

So I give to you a month late. BIRTHDAY PICTURES!!!!

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Finding A Voice

I am normally a quiet person and fairly reserved, especially in large groups of people. So when lots of strong opinions are being thrown around I typically withdraw into my little shell and say very little outside of the people I trust.

But some things should not and can not keep being swept back under the rug. I am still formulating what actions I want to take and educating myself. I don't feel comfortable going to protests because I am still going to work and have to interact with individuals of varying risk levels for COVID-19. I did sign up to be a mentor and review personal statements and resumes for STEM students.

I am really trying to challenge myself to use my voice and not hide from the hate and anger, because that does not change anything and is a large portion of the problem.