Friday, January 1, 2010
2010!! Horsey New Year Resolutions
Solitary Deer Tracks in Snow, Cloquet River December 22 2009
My last ride of 2009 yesterday was a thoughtful one. I pondered the path I would take with my horse through the unknown territory of 2010. I thought about the past year, and consolidated some New Year's Resolutions.
1. Slow Down.
Too often I bring my human time frame to interaction with my horse. Hurry up! I only have an hour. come on come on come on. On to the next thing! What's the matter with you? Come ON you big lunkus!
I believe horses need time to let things settle in their minds. Not to mention, time to turn those big long bodies around and co-ordinate 4 feet in space they often can't see (directly behind them).
When I consciously take a Zen minute and let John just breathe, he is so much quicker. When I give the 1-2-3 prepare-prepare-ask sequence, he is so much more ready to move out. So that's #1 for me. Slow It Down.
2. Spend time with John on the ground. Because John is in many ways an easy horse - quiet, mellow, and trustworthy - I tend to take advantage. As in, a few licks of a curry, slap the saddle on and ride. Get done riding, drag the saddle off, few slaps with a brush and off to the pasture.
Then of course I complain and whine about his ground manners. Well my own manners can be pretty bad when I think about it. He's not a faucet to turn on & off.
With my thoroughbred, who could be more of a spooky dancing handful at times, I did hours of ground work and never really let up on that. He needed the parameters outlined in bright light, in order to relax and work. Well, John deserves some of that too.
3. Keep up with the 3 B's (Buff, Bendy, Bootylicious Regime) and improve overall fitness of us both. Good Lord I ate too many cookies over the past week! And maple pumpkin cheesecake, and pistachio fluff, fruitcake, and bourbon fudge...I could go for some of all this right now.
John has slimmed down a bit over the past month as the temperature drops and he begins to burn his stored fat to keep warm. That doesn't work so well for me somehow har har...but the gym works, and walking works. Since there is almost nothing I can't turn into a shopping opportunity, I've ordered some ice cleats for my boots and so, pretty soon I can't use "Oooh I might slip on the ice!" as an excuse not to walk my dogs.
Who are here shown eating gift-wrap tubes, their sick little addiction:
So those are my horsey 2010 resolutions, only 3 of them so I hope my brain can remember them all.
Happy Trails to you in the New Year! May all your days in the year ahead be filled with light and grace, and may good horses lead you always to beautiful new horizons!