My Little Pony

I spent most of last week week in a fever-induced haze. I really recommend avoiding the awful flu-virus-thing that’s been circling around right now. Granted, it knocked two days out of my work week, but I don’t exactly enjoy days off that are spent hiding in bed because I can’t sit upright!

I’m mostly back to health at this point. I’ve still got a cough and a stuffy nose, but that’s tolerable. I spent most of my sick time praying that I was well by Friday, because I was not about to spend my second weekend as a horse owner in bed!

I’m currently cuddled up in my very own bed, but I had a fabulous staying up north with a coworker, who generously offered me a place to stay during the weekends. It may turn into something more permanent, but I’m not sure at this point. I have a very lovely living situation where I am the most comfortable I’ve ever been, but it’s an hour away from most of what I do. So, we shall see. This weekend, however, I’m enjoying the fact I’m not travelling back and forth so much!

I brought said coworker, L (who I will distinguish from barn owner L…somehow. Hah) to meet Image on Saturday. She is a savvy horsewoman who has a barnful herself, consisting of a few Arabs, an Appaloosa, three donkeys and a mule. She had many kind things to say about my critter, who was polite and quiet around her. She stayed with us for a bit, and then headed back to the house to meet the equine masseuse she had coming.

I worked with Image a bit — same simple stuff as last week. He is a bit sticky going to the left on the lunge line, so we worked on refining his response time when I ask him to whoa on the end of the line. It was a little on the icy side, so we stuck to one end of the ring and didn’t do a whole hell of a lot. I also spent a little time hanging out with him at the big mounting block we have at the barn. I stood on it and made some noise while he watched (with a bit of concern) me. I leaned across his back and scratched his belly, and had him stand as if I was going to get on him. He took most of it in stride, but was obviously on the tenser side. So, I spent about ten minutes just chattering at him and giving him wither scratches until he heaved a big sigh and cocked a hind leg. That’s what I wanted to see — a sufficiently bored horse with no concern at all that anything bad was about to happen. I called it a day, and brought him back into the barn for a spa treatment.

Admittedly, I’m a bit vain when it comes to my horse’s hair. I love long manes and full tails. Luckily, Image has both (if you ignore his adorable but slightly silly looking poof of a forelock!). I set to work with some Cowboy Magic and some Eqyss Survivor. It didn’t take long before his tail was soft and shiny, and his mane laid flat. I braided up his tail and mane…making sure to use matching braiding bands in a bright blue. The inner child in me squealed in delight.

Lastly, against everything I’ve been taught, I gave him a once over with the Cowboy Magic spray. I don’t intend on riding him for quite some time, so I figured I could get away with using the slightly slippery coat polish on the saddle area. I’m really glad I did, because it really brought the shine back into his coat. He stood and napped on the cross ties (which have become a non-issue with very little work!) as I buffed and braided, covering myself in horse hair and grooming spray. He didn’t flinch when I dragged the smaller, plastic mounting block into the aisle and plopped it next to him. I used it to braid up his mane and give him a short bridle path with one of the little purple horse shavers I had hidden in my grooming box. He didn’t even startle when I yelped in pain after slicing my finger open with said purple horse shaver…nor was he concerned as I rushed around trying to find something to wrap my finger in so I didn’t bleed all over my shiny black horse.

Seriously — I am totally a five year old at heart. Everything must match.

I ended the day with cookies and cuddles, and a video of his incredibly adorable little trick:
I love this horse. It’s ridiculous, because I’ve known him for such a short period of time…but he has wormed his way into my heart like no other.
Today, we wandered down to the abandoned baseball field to explore and play. This involved a walk down some semi-busy roads, so I was curious to see if he handled traffic as well as he’s handled everything else. I had faith that he would, but there was no way to know without giving it a shot. I had a visitor with us today as well — one of the people I currently live with, and the closest thing I’ve had to a father since mine passed away. T is funny, caring, and has shown real interest in the horses. I was teaching him to ride, up until GP passed away and we were without a reliable horse for him to ride. He gladly tagged along for our little trip, manning my camera for me while I led the horse. We set off down the road together, snowflakes falling around us and giving us a pretty backdrop for our outing.
I needn’t have worried at all — Image handled everything like a champ. Cars? No problem. Drain grates? Meh, whatever. Mailboxes, signs, people, someone chopping wood? Whatever. Wide open field? Yeeeeee-haw! 
He definitely got a little hopped up when we hit the baseball field. He, momentarily, forgot the meaning of “whoa” and we had words. He quickly regained his senses after a few laps with his tail flagged (which looked funny because of the braid!), and while he was still sticky going to the left, he remembered that stop means stop when I say it…not five strides later. Ahem.
Holy pace!! I hope his pace is comfortable, because we have a long way to go before I can focus on turning that back into a reliable rack or running walk…

One of the other things I’ve been working on with him is ground tying. He has it down relatively well after only a few short sessions, so I hoped to be able to implement that so I could take some pictures. I had no intentions of actually dropping the line when we were so far from home, but figured I could have him stand still while I backed away a bit to take some pictures. It did take a bit of doing, and a quick reminder on what I wanted, but he figured it out quickly. I snapped a few headshots, before handing the camera off to T, to finally get some pictures of us together. 

Hello. I’m adorable. These are my rhythm beads. Aren’t they pretty?

We walked home shortly thereafter, also without any hiccups. He continues to amaze me with his “sure, we can do this” attitude towards everything I ask of him. I am still prepared for the things we’re going to struggle with, but I have a sneaking suspicion those struggles will end up being under saddle. Regardless, we’ll figure it out. Right now, I’m just enjoying him and all his wonderfulness.
So, now starts another work week, where I’ll be wishing I was at the barn, my arms wrapped around his neck. My little pony is the best little pony on the planet!
Oh, and by the way?
No escapee minis this weekend. L fixed the fence. Take that, you evil little suckers!
Devil mini number one: Sassy
Devil mini number two: Moonshine. They look so harmless and fluffy…but all that fluff hides devil horns!

One thought on “My Little Pony

  1. Madeline C. February 4, 2013 / 3:38 am

    Looks like you guys are having fun! Yay! He definitely has a face that just screams, “GIVE ME A COOKIE!” Glad to hear you're feeling better. Is that a Stacy Westfall halter? Do you like it?


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