Stoney ain't Stoned.

Went for a ride today in the heat after church. We were supposed to ride with A, R and J but A and R had to go get hay unexpectedly because of a good deal and we were riding alone but not alone alone the whole time as the hay was being put up. Of course they were in the back pasture but catching them was easy'ish. Spirit wasn't a fan of being caught but Red stayed put long enough for me to get a lead on and we zig-zagged through the pasture to confuse the ponies and to get away without much fuss. Red was extremely lazy walking to the barn because of bugs/heat. He also had a bit welt on his neck from a bee. Probably a horse-fly. No heat, no oozing, no pain, just swollen. Nothing to worry about said mom and "A" so I put some SWAT on it after the ride just in case (I'm protective..)

"people! I love people!" he says.

"I iz too tired to ride, mom." he says. (Note the welt on his neck.)

We tacked up quickly and hopped on in the "sour pasture" as I call it. The front pasture near the driveway is the pasture with the run-in stall, therefor they, of course, are barn sour and sassy in there. Mounting was tricky with Red but he settled down the second I sat on him and we stood for a little while so we didn't just trot off the second we mounted. After we stood, we moved into a slow walk and Red was happy to go on a loose rein. Spirit was a little more concerned about the run-in but he did alright. Mom and I decided to get a bit of trotting in since it was a bit cooler near the creek on the right side of the pasture and a nice breeze had blown in. Spirit was mad at her for making him trot so he did some giraffe moves/head-throwing while Red happily ran around like "WEEEEE this is fun yay running!"

Hey, my EQ doesn't suck here. Woohoo!!

(this is from our last few minutes of riding, not that exact moment that I was talking about above.)

Red was easy to stop unlike Spirit. Of course, he was mad about being stopped now that he had gotten to trot, but when he did settle down he did pretty well.

We did some stopping work and made them stand here and there for a couple minutes to test them in the pasture since Spirit was being antsy. Red was totally cool with standing as usual (he's the best at being lazy.) and I got bored during the sitting so I pulled my phone out and went to Youtube, making a short riding playlist with Charlie Daniels, Josh Turner and Randy Travis, haha! I thought it would be fun to ride to music for once and it would be great for the horses to get used to some extra noise in the background. I played Achy Breaky Heart (as a joke...lol!) and the original music video had some traffic noises/sirens and Red gave it the stink eye but other than that he didn't mind and stopped caring when Billy Cyrus started singing and the sirens stopped. Maybe he's a country fan, haha!

The group had started coming down to the barn at that point because "A" and "R" were waiting on the call to get the second batch of hay and had already put their first cutting up in the loft so we trotted for a few more beats and then let them rest in the shade for a few minutes while we talked.

Happy pony!

They weren't quite as happy to start riding again but Red was okay with it after one attempt to run to the stall (stupid run-in...lol) and Spirit gave a bunny hop but mom is good at being stern and Spirit was content to trot around again so she wouldn't bring the crop out. ;)

We basically did a lot of trotting and walking around the pasture, testing them a bit and working on the basics like stopping, circles, and being...ya know, not barn sour. Red honestly did much better than I expected him to do since he was lazy going to the barn (but all of the horses were, sooo...) and he was extremely happy to trot around and walk on the buckle when asked.

About halfway through, "A" went to go grab Stoney/Hercules (AKA the horse with many names.) from the back pasture to show us what he can do now. He's spent 60 days with a trainer and oh my word....he's changed so much. Before, he literally did not know what to do. Hence the name Stoney, he acted stoned. But according to the trainer, he had changed a ton. (he was originally supposed to be at the trainer for 20 days but yeah...he knew nothing.)

While we waited, mom opted to put Spirit up so she could take some photos/videos for me and watch Stoney in action. :) Red and I stayed alone in the pasture and he wasn't the happiest and called for his buddy but he was pretty quiet.

Concentrated one second....

Sleepy the next....

He was obviously getting tired of standing still so I walked up to see what was going on and let him move around. Mom finished up and let Spirit out in the pasture while we got moving again. Red wasn't too happy about not being able to follow Spirit and tried to trot in the run-in but he stopped when he found out that I was serious about working, lol! He hadn't been worked for very long and was still really cool in the breeze so I wanted to get a little bit of loping in before we untacked and cooled off. Once he actually got going he was happy again.

Calling for his buddy.

 Happy pony!

My favorite of the day, I think.

I'm very happy with the amount of trotting that we got in. We loped for a couple beats but it was way too hot to do much as the day went on. Since he was doing so good, I opted to end on a good note and let him get a bit of trotting in and go at his own speed before untacking so I could have a bit of fun and we could get some good pictures out of it. :) Just for fun, here's a photo from last Summer (june, I think) in the same gait and the same place...

We've changed our tack, our way of horsemanship and I've gotten so much more comfortable. The only reason I used split reins was because I was uncomfortable and was nervous that he would bolt with me home. Now, I'm riding with looser reins one handed and neck-reining and he seems much happier. :) I know y'all can't see the big changes in a photo, but trust me, we're trusting each other a lot nowadays. ;) And for even more fun, less than a years difference....

Disclaimer: This photo makes me want to vomit because my reins are too tight/high, my heels are...let's not start on them, and I'm not confident at all, resulting in the hand on the seat. And this is as we were preparing to trot.

It's really obvious that as I am relaxing, so is he. My EQ has improved not because I've been drilled to look better or keep my heels down, but because I've dropped my defensive seat which I had for no reason at all whatsoever. Red's a good horse and he won't throw me unless there's a good reason, I've learned to be more confident in HIM (not me, lol) and we've changed. Big time.

Tongue out. Fail.

All in all, a great ride despite the heat! :) We both got a good work out in!

Tomorrow, I'll post about a big feat for me - riding a gaited horse after I hopped off of Red. And I'll show off my new tack finds. But this post is too long already.


  1. Awesome ride!! Red is sooo cute! I love his face. :) You've come a long way from the picture a year ago. I can totally understand the defensive seat. Riding a greenie really does no good for my EQ hehe. Looking forward to reading about the gaited horse. :)

    1. Thank you!! I definitely developed an extremely defensive seat because of his rough gait and I didn't realize how much worse it was making everything. Yikes!

  2. This blog is so fun to read! And your photos are spectacular. It sounds like you have a lot of self awareness and I find that SO REFRESHING and sporty! Your horse sure is pretty. Helooks like a nice solid guy.

    1. Thank you! :) I appreciate it! He's the best!