Friday, December 19, 2008

Winter Slacking

As one of my readers pointed out, it has been long enough since I last posted that I can barely call myself a blogger anymore. It has been a crazy couple of months through the holidays. First we moved Halo to a new barn at the beginning of November (the nice boarding stable in Manor). She has adjusted very well and seems fat and happy. I know she will be even happier when they finally open up the bigger pastures for turnout. She's made friends with a huge, gorgeous bay mare, and they are often together in the field. She's the big mare's little blonde shadow.

Later in November we made a weeklong trip to Louisiana to visit Casi's family, and my mom also flew down from Portland. It was a great trip, and a pleasant holiday. Then, right after getting back, Casi and I moved to a new rental house in Austin. We love our new place, but it was a lot of work to get things moved over, and it definitely isn't completely unpacked yet.

Promptly following the house move, my office moved to a different building as well. So it's been a crazy season of moving for us! We are hoping it is done for now. Between the beginning of the chaos and now, Miss Halo has developed two things: a robust quarter horse rear end, and FUR.

Here's the somewhat bedraggled girl enjoying her dinner after some exercise in the outdoor arena. It was difficult to get her head out of the bucket. Typical mare.

This is the "Oh no, Mom took away my foodz!" face that she made when I took away the bucket she apparently hadn't finished licking clean.

In this last picture you can see how much her neck has devloped since I got her. It used to be so scrawny, but she's definitely filled out some. It does concern me that she's starting to look rather thick through the throatlatch. I am not sure if it is something she will grow out of with the next spurt or not. I think she may remain somewhat thick, but I think she still has some balancing out to do.

I know I have said it before, but I will say it again - it shocks me that people are riding their horses at her age. She still looks like a frankenfilly to me sometimes, which tells me that she is nowhere near mature. I will continue to do lots of ground work with her, and a bit of light longeing. In the meantime, her immaturity allows me to not feel too bad about only working with her three times each week. Right now the best thing for her is to spend most of her time just being a horse.


Leah Fry said...

Blogger slacker! There you are! I hate, hate, hate moving. I don't mind change and new places, but getting there is no picnic.

"Thick" is relative. Of course, if you are eventually hoping to show Halo, that needs to be a concern, but she is lovely. She has a beautiful face and a kind eye. You wanna talk thick, you need look no further than my galloping Barcalounger. Unfortunately, he's also thick in the head, but that's another story.

I picked up a copy of Western Horseman, which I have never bought before and was appalled when I looked at the fine print on the cover photo. It was a BIG ole boy atop a 2-yr old working ranch horse, chest deep in Nevada snow. The article said they regularly work their 2 yr olds in the snow like that because it helps them "build muscle and remain focused on their tasks."

I admit to not being any sort of expert on the subject. The blogs have been abuzz lately. I am leaning toward the opinion that you have to be very, very careful with youngsters if youhave any hope of them remaining sound past the age of about four.

Glad you're back.

meg said...


My apologies for being a whiner about your blog. She looks shaaaagy!

I have some friends that I study with that I really wish I could talk about horses with, but I just cant. They're award-winning reining futurity trainers, and start their horses as young as 16 months, and they start them HARD.

I hate things like the Kentucky derby and other 3-year-old races, but reining is so much worse for them from what I've seen...starting them on sliding stops from the very beginning makes me feel like their feet are going to fall off as they're doing it because their tendons are so loose...*sigh*

smottical said...

I read somewhere recently that "a horse only has so many sliding stops in him. Use them wisely." I think that's something more reiners should take to heart.