It was back in the ring for Lilly this weekend, even though it was so hot that when I got down there I immediately started melting. Lilly has had a few spooks lately and I realized that even though they were not serious, I haven't been incorporating de-sensitizing training into our time together. When I first had Lilly, we worked in the ring all the time. I have fallen in love with the trail so deeply, that it is easy to leave ground work and other lessons in the ring on the back burner. Not any more! I realize that this kind of work is as essential as our work and play on the trail. Here is what we faced Saturday. I set up a few tarps and some scary branches. I also had a plastic grocery bag in my back pocket, and a small english saddle to take off and plop on her on her off side.
Here we are walking over one of the tarps. She was very good for the tarps. After doing ground work I got on her and she trotted over them without any trouble. Good brumby. We've done this a million times before. But anything worth doing one million times must be worth doing one million and one times, isn't it?
Jackie was in the ring working with Pokey. He has no fear of tarps whatsoever. He is the most curious and puppy-like horse. That's a little pile of brush he's passing over. I made that pile because Lilly got a little weird earlier with some leafy branches. It's not like her to be that way, but just to make sure she's over it, I did some ground work with branches. Including a small pile of them like right here. I also wiggled them all over her face and neck and made them brush against the saddle.
Here is Bill and Freddie watching Jackie and Pokey close a gate, rancher style. But I really took this picture just for fun to see if you see something here in this picture......
...that is not in this picture, 2 seconds later!!! hee hee, sooo childish, soooo childish. But it is so funny too.
The next day it was also hot and sunny which made it the perfect day to have the horses cross water. Because then when we ride them through the water, they will be so familiar with it, there will be no surprises. Here is Lilly getting ready to take the plunge.
Look at Lilly's video right here! It is SUPERCUTE. We had Lilly go through twice. The second time I think she realized she liked it in the water. Cutest hippo I have ever seen!
Then it was Pokey's turn. Pokey was not troubled by this task at all. He also looked a bit like a hippo in the water, pausing to enjoy himself before getting out. He also didn't porpoise his way up the tiny bank, but just casually strolled up and out of the water like he was a regular amphibian.
That's it, Pokey!
Oooh, that water feels good on a hot day!
What a good Pokey brumby!!!! Check out Pokey's water video right here!
Here's Bill with Freddie. Freddie was not as water-loving as Pokey and Lilly. He was, like my dog, very skeptical about the water. But after a few tentative moments, Freddie too made the crossing.
Ruby was also in the water! To see a video of Ruby making sense of it all, click here!
Speaking of water, after all that, when I came home, Brandon and I headed to our town's small lake to take a swim.
It was almost all cleared out.
There I am in the red and white stripes, adjusting my goggles. I am one of those nerd swimmers who wear goggles. But it's really only because I am worried about losing my contact lenses.
There I go! I don't do anything elaborate, I just spill into the water. I can't help but notice all the guys like to be as crazy as they can while jumping into the water.
Like my husband! Those are his feet! I missed the photo of him in mid-air. Probably because I am no photographer!
My parting shot is of some gorgeous oyster mushrooms I spied on my way to Bill's last week. Brandon went back and picked some of them to add to our dinner. Yum!!