As y'all may know, my birthday is on May 14th and I share it with three of my best friends, so we all decided to meet up earlier (we live 2 hours away and it's always hard to meet up because of that!) than our birthday and head to the barn the weekend before! I actually met two of them on Pinterest and one of them through those two, we started talking and we found out that we had a lot in common, such as our love for horses, where we live and our faith. We're all crazy Baptist horse lovers, so we fit in pretty well with each other, haha! The girls (We'll call them L and H) mother came, so mom and her talked while we all got ready.
We'd been planning this for months and of course, the day we'd been waiting for was very interesting weather-wise. I woke up with it literally pouring down rain and pretty much just told myself that the only thing we'd be doing is getting some lunch and hanging out..away from the barn. *insert sad face here* But then, mom told me to shut up and stop being sad so like any normal equestrian, we headed to the barn early to catch the horses and stall them so at least they could come to the barn, run in and see them in stalls without getting wet. The rain literally just stopped once we got in the pasture that they were in and mom and I bragged on the horses the whole walk back because they were so good and put up with us and the muddy ground. The herd is very..well, nosey, and it's actually a fairly scary struggle to get a horse away. Thankfully, two of the worst horses are at the trainers, but we still had to deal with the rest. Luckily, Annabelle (Red's overly-attached girlfriend who tries to kill us both when we try to leave alone) has been going towards another gelding because Red's totally head-over-hoof with Sii, the new mare, so he was actually easy to get away. We zig-zagged around the pasture, stopped, loved on them every few minutes, just to make the others think we were here to play, not get them away...we snuck away eventually and they didn't even notice. Mwahahahah.
|Red says, "Hello human. Come walk with you? Well of course, I always love a good walk in the rain."|
Went back home, changed out of our muddy clothes (we were literally drenched) and headed back for more with friends! By this time, the sky was sunny and we just felt a couple drops of rain every now and then. Tacked Red up first, he was being annoyed by bugs so I sprayed him and got on first to make sure he wouldn't try anything silly. Trotted a few laps, he was being perfect, then handed him over to L. We basically all just took turns, I was the camera woman for like 90% of the time but I got first dibs on both horses because apparently everyone was nervous that they would act stupid without work beforehand.
|Red strutting his stuff. (That's K riding)|
In typical lesson horse form, anytime someone else but the rider was in the round pen, he tried to follow, but he actually listened when I sent him off so I stayed in for the most part.
They had never used a hackamore before so it took them awhile to learn the ropes and etc, as well as learning how Red worked and what he was used to. He works off of leg pressure and vocal cues, does open reining or neck reining, so basically you just get to pick what you are more comfortable with. I basically just keep my reins low and use leg pressure, but they got to do different things in the comfort of the pen.
|I'm the shortest of the group so my stirrups are short, haha!|
Once we were done with tack, I got him untacked and groomed him a bit. He wasn't super sweaty so we basically just hopped back on. He loves, loves tackless/liberty work so he was super good. L got on first because that was pretty much for her...apparently her dream was to ride a horse tackless and she's used to some crazy racking horses that she couldn't really do it on, so I said, hey, I've got the perfect horse! Haha!
After her, K and H took turns on him. H was definitely the bravest and went without the neck rope after like 5 seconds and even loped him around the round pen. Red was happy to oblige and when she started going, she asked how to stop him (no tack, no reins to pull back haha!) so I told her to say "Woah" and as soon as Red heard me say it, he stopped in his tracks, haha!
|Everybody loves Red!|
Then, L and I got the great idea to double tackless, just to say we did it, haha! Mounting was hilarious. I got on easily and then she got on behind, Red was perfect but she slipped and almost pushed me off when trying to get on, so I basically fell on Red's neck and prayed he wouldn't move. :)) Of course, he didn't move, just looked at me like "Um why are you on my neck, human." and continued to stick his head out the round pen panel to get loved on by people outside.
|Love this girl and that horse!|
Before we turned Red out, Lydia got to do join up for the first time. I love, love join up because I feel like it shows so much trust and respect in the relationship between horse and rider, plus Red loves it. He'll do it with absoloutly no tack and no whip involved, just you and him. It took a few minutes to get him trotting because he saw me in the round pen and kept trying to walk back over, so I got him going and let L take over. In less than 5 minutes, we thought he joined up but really, he just tricked us and then peed hahaa!! Once he was done he actually did join up with her, he trotted after her and did really well, then saw me putting tack in my arms to leave and stayed at the wall until I came back, haha! He showed off his hugging skills as well, wrapping his head around my neck and resting his whole weight on my back, lol!
|Always has one ear back to listen.|
We joined up as well, I let him follow when I put things away and then we took some more photos because duh.
|Starting to dapple!|
I am so, SO proud of his coat this year. Even mom kept bragging on it. He's starting to get some dapples on his stomach (YAYAYAYAYAY!) and his color is a super rich, red'ish color. He probably has one of the healthiest coats at the barn right now and I never thought that would happen. Ever. This time last year, he was still straggly with a winter coat and it was such a dull, ugly color. :(
|Cheesing with my sweet boy.|
|I literally said "treat" and this is what happened. No. Joke.|
Also, look at those chest muscles. ooh-la-la my pony isn't fat anymore!
|Excuse his gelding parts, haha. This is unedited other than I added some dark edging around the photo. Look at that color!|
I think it's time to clip his bridle path, muzzle, pasterns and get the ugly burnt edges off of his mane to get it growing some more. My main goal for his mane (har har, puns) is for it to go past his neck, so fingers crossed that it continues going this well!
|Selfies, of course.|
We also rode Spirit but this post is too long so I'll do a part 2 later. But before...
|Birthday present! Yes, it's on weird. I just tried it on for a photo and had to run and help mom with Spirit.|
Well, goodbye for now and sorry for this picture-heavy post. ;)