Friday, May 22, 2009

Busy Barn Day

I had the barn to myself today, which was a surprise because Fridays have been fairly active of late. So I was able to implement my plan of action. It was warm enough for Phantom's first bath of the season!

Rode for half an hour, primarily sitting trot, until Phantom came round and bendy. I've been doing a pattern where I ride out of the corner to X and back to the corner to ride the short ends of the arena at the rail. I try to work toward a soft bend at each end of the arena, straighten on the way to X, change the bend at X, straighten on the way to the corner and return to the correct bend at the next short end. Since I'm asking for a slight bend I'm less prone to "shout" my cues. I try to think of just shifting from one side of the spine to the other. I continue to work on implementing Trainer Tracey's suggestions to sit back more and look between Phantom's ears.

Anyway, ended the ride with leg yields and shoulders-in to Handel on All Classical FM. Nothing like a little Baroque tune to put one in the right frame of mind.

So then it was off to the wash rack where I really "sudsed up" Phantom's mane and tail. Of course, while rinsing his mane half the water goes down my arm and I end up taking a shower, too. When finished with wash and rinse I sprayed him with fly repellant and sent Phantom out to free graze and dry out in the sun.

While Phantom was air drying I gave my saddle and bridle a quickie cleaning with the handy little Lexol sheets. I know it's cheating and it's not a thorough job, but otherwise I wouldn't do it at all. With that chore done, I grabbed my little Kodak and tried to take a few pictures.

Man, his mane turned out bright white. Too bad he won't be this sparkly when next I see him.

I brought Phantom into the little barn and banded his mane into a continental braid. Much easier with clean hair! Then I placed his new "clearance" fly sheet on him. Yesterday my income-tax-refund order from Dover Saddlery arrived. So I tried on the one-piece combo turnout sheet for size. I'll pack it away for next fall. Then I tried on the combo one-piece fly sheet that I'll likely use later in the summer. It seemed to fit okay for length, but the belly strap must be sized for a pregnant mare (and I do mean pregnant). So I brought it home for possible alterations. Between Gallops and the Mill End Store, I think I can accumulate the materials I'll need for the job.

New Kitty:

About the time we lost Romeo, Molly reported her family was being visited by a stray cat -- likely dumped in the area by someone.  :-(

Juliet has found a new home at the barn. She's still on trial, hiding in the feed room. Although, she did venture out to meow at me and sort-of-almost accept a pet. And Juliet was reported to be seen stalking "game."

She's very thin and it makes us all so angry to think she may have been dropped off to fend for herself. She will be wormed, and spayed as soon as possible.

Juliet is very sweet and soaking up the attention of the boarders who come to say hello and welcome her to the barn.


jrosey said...

Phantom sure is a looker! Sounds like a productive day at the barn! And how awesome that Juliet has found herself a good home! It's appaling to think that people are capable of abandoning animals.

allhorsestuff said...

Adorable new kitty to love on there! Nice timing on her part!

I loved hearing aobut your riding times...we too are working on sitting trot. Ours is just begining.
Phantom is gorgeous!!