I do SO love my Muffin Man. He is so much fun; I can't believe I got so lucky to find him from a PICTURE! Our 3 year anniversary is Wednesday. A picture montage will be on the schedule! Today I jumped him; didn't set up anything fancy. Still pretty much the same stuff that's been set. I DID get brave and finally up the oxer in my xrail/oxer 1 stride to 2'9 in the front and 3' in the back. Still had the corner on the outside, and set the cavaletti oxer a little closer together. Decided to use the hollow D-ring.
He was a GOOD boy:) Flatwork felt very nice with the hollow mouth D. He can get pretty stiff in that bit, and hang on it a little, but because he KNEW we would be jumping, he went around fairly light. I spiraled in and out at the trot both directions; he felt a little looser and softer to the right, but not bad either direction. Did a turn on the haunches/canter depart back and forth a few times, and he gave me some PERFECT transitions:) I mean, not a SINGLE step of walk or trot before sitting down and pushing off into the canter. The canter work itself got a *hair* strong, which is when I enjoy just being able to half halt when he's wearing the wonder bit, and he lifts his shoulders.
Started jumping with a cavaletti. I halted after each jump, moved him over, then picked up the canter on the new lead. I don't obsess over lead changes. We don't have to perform them in any of our dressage tests, and I've found that in general, if his balance calls for him to need to do one, he does:) In my efforts to refine our stadium work, I want him to be able to jump around LIKE a hunter, even if he doesn't jump or move like one. The one stride was GREAT every time. I felt GREAT. My leg felt nice and steady, my release was its usual auto release, and he felt nice and straight and spring over the jumps.
TIP OF THE WEEK:(still courtesy of ME;)) When you go to give your horse a bath, buy a $0.99 loofah sponge from Walmart. Works BETTER than any of the $$ bathing tools you can buy from the tack store:) Soft enough for even a red headed Thoroughbred, firm enough to remove dirt/hair/etc. Please e-mail me YOUR tips at: email@example.com
If y'all don't e-mail me, I am going to run out!!! Help me out here!;)
Dressage work in the ring Wednesday. May do some counter-canter stuff. Definitely will leg yield and shoulder-in. Other stuff, we'll just have to see:)