What a full day we had! I never did get to ride yesterday despite my insistence that I absolutely would. I had some sort of bug in the afternoon, or maybe I ate something that didn't agree with me.
So this morning I got up secure in the knowledge that I had to ride today. But while I was brushing him I realized that he really badly needed his sheath cleaned. I was supposed to do it every 3 months, and it's been something like a year and a half. So I broke out the Excalibur (that name just cracks me up) and got him all gooey and then rinsed it with some washrags and a couple buckets of warm water. It's still pretty nasty, but not near as bad. I was getting some rather large chunks of smegma out of there. He didn't let me get his bean, but I'll keep trying. He is more comfortable with the whole process now. :)
(Haha, when I went back inside my son asked me to wiggle his loose tooth. I said, "Honey, you don't want my hands in your mouth right now.")
Then we saddled up and did a lot of stupid desensitizing stuff. He hadn't been ridden in over a month, after all. More like 6 weeks. Holy cow, I am a bad horsey mama.
We practiced walking around in a cloverleaf pattern and stopping and backing in the center. Oooh, fun... But much needed. "His" baby was calling from afar, the wind was blowing, stuff was happening, and he needed to be tuned back up. By the time we were done I was getting a good stop or turn without touching the reins (mostly anyway). He wasn't as good at the trot but was rating a bit better without getting excited and rushing.
When I took the saddle off - my NEW saddle, which I LOVE - he hadn't sweated at all so it was no good for figuring out if this pad is a good one to go with this saddle. I did feel like I was moving with him better, and my leg to horse contact was very nice. I didn't try out the Orthoflex today. Hopefully I'll get a chance tomorrow. It might be nice to ride in one and then the other to see if there seems to be a change in his performance.
Then I trimmed his front hooves, which took a while because I'm slow as molasses and he'd built up a lot of sole. They look nice now, but my shoulder is acting funny...
Just when I was finishing up his hooves Henry showed up for a visit so I went to put Tonka away. Which was apparently Scout's cue to rip down the temporary fence and go prancing about loose with his mama. I put Tonka in the round pen because Mack was freaking out and blocking the gate to the pasture, then I followed Scout and Bella around until one of them decided to let me catch him or her. Her, it turned out to be. Once I caught Bella and took her into the round pen, Scout followed right with her. That kid...
Then we went up into the mountains to explore and see if there were any huckleberries left. I think we found 5 berries total. But we did find an awesome trail I can't wait to ride my horse on. And that's just one trail out of many that I can explore. Now I just hope my sister either finds a horse to ride soon or gets brave enough to borrow a horse. I could let her ride Soxy or Mack, or she could ride her husband's horse, but noooo. If she won't go I'm going to see if my friend Melissa will ride one of mine or take hers up and we could both go "horse hiking." Who says we have to ride anyway? I know a couple other people who might be able to go, but I think they have day jobs.
It's been a long day and I'm off to bed. Good night!