Hope Springs Eternal
I love spring. As I sit in my bed typing this, a cool breeze is wafting, bringing in the wonderful, sweet honeysuckle scent from the over exuberant vegetation outside my bedroom window. The dawn chorus of bird song has replaced the nighttime toad/frog and insect chorus, right now it is in the high 60s F, but it will be in the low 80’s F, the heat and humidity is starting to come back here.
For my birthday my husband gave me enough money for…Continue
The Simple Pleasures of Life
I am greatly encouraged by my physical progress now. Knock on wood; I seem to finally be recovering from my 16 month old MS exacerbation. I had been recovering last summer, but then I got appendicitis 9 months ago and that really set me back, but now I seem to be making progress each week, miniscule progress each week but it adds up over the months! My walking is stronger though I still have a tendency to stagger, I have been able to do a LITTLE…Continue
The Heron is Back
I did not get to ride Cider last week, it rained.
So on Tuesday I called up Debbie to see who I would be riding for my lesson on Wednesday, and I found out she was still up at her mother’s and I would not get my lesson. At least I found out before I got to the stable with the wrong tack.
I just got to ride Mia this week. Luckily both rides were with ideal spring weather, sort of cool in the mornings (upper 40’s F), sunny, and rapidly…Continue
I Really Tried to Make My Leg Muscles Sore
During my two rides this week I worked on my gripping muscles. Of course, before I work on my gripping muscles, I have to make sure that I do not end up squeezing myself out of the saddle. Concentrating on keeping my heels and my knees down, I did succeed at practicing gripping with my calf without ruining the basic security of my seat.
Sunday was a marvelous day to ride Cider, my only complication is that I accidentally took Mia‘s…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on April 18, 2015 at 11:32am — No Comments
The Dark Side of Spring—GNATS!!!
Last Sunday was a marvelous Spring day—no gnats, sunny, warm, with a…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on April 11, 2015 at 3:35pm — No Comments
I Just Got to Ride Mia Last Week
Last week was sort of frustrating. When I called Shannon to ride on Sunday she told me that she and her husband had to finish a job, and since they run their own business I understood, small businesses depend on their reputations. Good ones get the job done. Then Debbie called me Tuesday to tell me I could not have my lesson because they were going to give all their horses their spring shots Wednesday morning. Well, the small Dy’on blinkers I…Continue
My Back is Still Hurting
Spring is here! The Bradford Pears and Forsythia are blooming, and I can see the leaf buds are starting to swell. I hope it lasts for a while.
I did not have a very pleasant ride on Tercel. Grooming him was fine, I had almost no problems brushing his ears or putting the poll cap on. He was a little antsy when I started my lesson but we walked around the ring and he was not horrible--UNTIL--a rude duck flapped its wings just after we passed it. …Continue
The Time Springing Forward Leads to Confusion
I rode all three horses this week. That was good. But losing an hour of sleep last weekend has made my mobility slightly worse, something that happens to me each Spring time change.
Cider had obviously enjoyed her three week vacation. Through the years I’ve ridden her I’ve noticed if Cider got an extended time off I essentially have to retrain her--this means halt, this means turn, this means back up, etc.. Now I know that…Continue
Tercel Shows Both Sides of His Personality This Week
It was cold on Wednesday morning, so cold that Debbie called me up to make sure I was coming. It was down to 25° F, and a light breeze was blowing. I told her it would really help me to ride since I was not able to ride either Friday or Sunday and my walking was getting worse, but if it was too cold for her it was fine, I could ride on Friday. She told me to come on out.
Added by Jackie Cochran on January 31, 2015 at 2:44pm — No Comments
I apologize to my readers for my lack of production this year, I just get so tired and discouraged that I can’t seem to write.
At least I kept riding last year, and that seemed to take up all my extra energy. I even made progress with my riding, Cider no longer reminds me of a pretzel as we walk and trot around Shannon’s small ring. Thanks to Cider’s refusal to accept anything less than perfection, my body finally seems to have figured out how to keep centered in…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on January 10, 2015 at 12:02pm — No Comments
Gosh Darn It--Mia Changes Her Mind Again!
Mia, the nearly 30 year old Arab mare I ride, seems to be going through various issues as she ages. Bits that used to be fully accepted start bothering her and she always lets me know in a few weeks if she wants me to change then.
Mia, in the past, has not particularly liked bitless bridles (old jumping caveson bridle, LG bitless, Nurtural cross-under bitless, Dr. Cook’s cross under bitless, Light Rider bitless, all three of…Continue
Debbie’s Horse Gets to Try a Different Saddle
Debbie, my wonderful riding teacher and manager of a big stable (38 horses or so) has a dream of doing long distance riding. She has her horse, Tercel, an Arabian gelding, but since he is an Arab it can be difficult to find a saddle that FITS him. If you are going to ride a horse long distances, a well fitting saddle is essential if you want a sound, usable horse at the end of the ride. She already bought one saddle that ended up not…Continue
Surviving The Summer
Well, I seem to have survived the summer heat. It has been a challenge living without air-conditioning but I got a wonderful surprise, this summer I had a LOT more endurance when riding in the heat. My youngest son, who has a BS in Biochemistry, told me that organisms have a mechanism when it is hot that protects the body’s proteins, and when the weather turns cold (or if a person is in air-conditioning a lot) the body stops doing this particular…Continue
A Week of Forgetting Things
The heat has definitely arrived here in NC, not full summer heat and humidity yet but it has been a challenge living without air-conditioning. Bless the person who invented the electric fan! I have managed to stay cool enough so I am staying stable physically with my MS, but my memory is not as good as it is during cooler weather.
So Wednesday I forgot to do my final check-off of all the stuff I take to my riding lesson and forgot my Corrector…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on June 15, 2014 at 2:59pm — No Comments
Mia Patiently Tries to Explain Something to Me This Week
When I was riding Mia on Friday I had a great time. She continued to keep contact with her JP single jointed full cheek snaffle, reaching out confidently and not flinging her head or curling up when I made a mistake with my hands. When I made a mistake with my hands she would start inverting, but when I corrected myself and sent her on she would reach out again and accept the bit. She was quite alert and looked around…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on June 8, 2014 at 3:30pm — No Comments
I Give Eli a Helpful Hint
The heat has started to come to North Carolina, and due to thousands of dollars of unexpected expenses plus expected money not coming in I am having to adjust to living without air-conditioning this summer. Just today we got an air-conditioner in one room, the room we fixed up after our water pipes froze last winter, the smallest room in our house. So I am not doing as well as normal, but that has been the story of my life this year.
Added by Jackie Cochran on May 25, 2014 at 6:24pm — No Comments
Two Ways I Triggered My Hip Bursitis Riding This Week
After several sweaty rides it cooled down this week. We had to go through 3 inches of rain first, but for my last two rides it was cool with a pleasant breeze, cool enough that Mia protested standing in the breeze since she is now in her summer coat.
It was on Mia that I triggered my hip bursitis the first time. After a nice ride walking around with no problems I decided it might be a good idea for me to practice gripping…Continue
Gnats, Mugginess, Slippery Breeches, and Even More Gnats
Down here in central southern North Carolina we are now paying the price of our plentiful winter rains. The gnats are truly horrible. Debbie has ALL of her 30 plus horses in face masks and she asked me 1) if gnats are poisonous since she has swallowed so many of them this year, 2) if gnats are good for anything, and 3) if there is any other critter that eats them. I could not give her an answer, I guess I better start…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on May 11, 2014 at 12:30pm — No Comments
Mia Changes Her Mind About Her Bit
I had a wonderful week of riding all three horses. We have had absolutely wonderful spring weather and everything worked out.
Last week I just got to ride once, on Mia, with the JP Dr. Bristol bit that I used with her before I tried the JP copper roller full cheek bit. This ride with the Dr. Bristol was fine, but my next ride was a thorough review of all of Mia’s bit evasions and protests. This was following a general deterioration of…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on April 27, 2014 at 5:30pm — No Comments
I’m Getting So Very Tired
I had another wonderful week of three rides, and all my rides were in absolutely beautiful spring weather. The only downside is that it is becoming more and more apparent that I’ve lost just about all the physical progress I’d made over the past 6-7 years. I post the trot for maybe a quarter of the ring and I have to rest. My previously taut muscles have lost all their tone. I get off the horse and I am so tired that I do not walk well. And there I am…Continue
Added by Jackie Cochran on April 13, 2014 at 5:22pm — No Comments