So this week was pretty much a lost week. Monday is always kind of a no-go for riding because they do jumping lessons that night and because the outdoor arena has been too soppy for jumping for the past, what, month then they ride in the indoor arena until 7:00. So it's packed, just not practical. Tuesday I was helping out a friend, so no riding then, but I have no problem helping a friend out. That's how good of a person I am :) And then Wednesday I had a hair appointment (my hair needed it, my bangs made me look like a sheepdog heehee) and it had been scheduled since my last one six weeks ago, so it wasn't a spur-of-the-moment thing.
Tuesday Greta also had a farrier appointment, and we have good news: the farrier said her barefoot hooves are tough as nails. She has big, dinosaur hide frogs, and she appears to be standing on all of them quite evenly now. Yay!!!!
Thursday I did actually ride because I had a lesson, and Greta was in frame for almost the entire time when she was asked to be, of course she got stretching breaks. I was very proud of her! We did some exercises with rein aids to try and get her to stay in frame, and some more half halt practicing, and it worked. We did all of the practicing on a 20 mete circle (alas! 20-meter circle, we have become quite familiar have we not?) and then tried out our exercises throughout the entire arena, and though she picked up pace a bit, we still stayed in frame. We also did some canter, trot transitions on a bigger circle at the end of the lesson, and by about the fifth time around or so, I'd just think "trot" and she'd go back to a trot without getting grabby with the reins. It was a trot enough to make a Standardbred jealous, but a trot nonetheless! Then, because she had worked up a bit of a sweat, I put her cooler on and got started on pulling her mane! Supposedly after a work their pores are nice and open so it makes mane pulling more comfortable for the horse. I need to work up a sweat and try it on myself to see if that's true haha! But so far, it is much more even, though thinning it out I haven't quite got the concept, so I haven't started with that. Help?
Friday I was out, and then Saturday I fixed feed in the morning and only had time to lunge Greta, because I was going to see Avatar (4 times now!!) with a friend at 2:30 and then I went to go see our school's production of Oklahoma (I didn't realize how talented my school was!) that evening. Today was a very dear family member's birthday, so I fixed feed in the morning and then lunged Greta again. But today, she was interesting.
Another horse was being lunged at the other end of the arena, so Greta was curious about him. While were walking he was cantering, so when I asked her to trot she did a quick trot. It wasn't anything "ugly", she was still in a nice frame (she's been doing of her own accord in a halter! I am very proud of her!) but it was more of a lengthened trot. When I asked to her canter, you would've thought somebody fired a pistol at her feet. All of that pent-up energy that had been dormant within her in her stall, at the grooming area, walking, trotting, released! She leapt up into the air and did something reminiscent of a Lippizaner doing a capriole and then proceeded to bounce about like a pinball in a machine without a glass cover. This also sent the other horse into a fit, and I apologized as I pulled Greta back into the center of our circle. Then we tried walk-trot-canter again. She still did a few bucks that were a bit more powerful than I would've liked, so I brought her back in again. This third time, she did a nice, controlled canter. We went the other way around and no problems. It was cute, but thank goodness I wasn't riding that!
And lastly, I can letter in dressage, or any other discipline for that matter! USEF is offering a varsity jacket lettering program. The qualifications are at least 100 hours of riding by June 15. No problem. The big problem is this other qualification bit: either 2 USEF-recognized shows by June 15 or 5 USDF shows by June 15. That might be a problem.
I could always just try again Senior year, but it would look really good that I did it two years rather than three. I have found 2 USEF recognized Dressage shows, the problem is finding a trailer because my trainer will be doing eventing shows during that time. So all in all, looks like I'll be jacket-less this year. I was just fine with the fact I wasn't going to letter in school because, well, I'm no school representative! I don't want to sing or run or dance or anything of the like, and AP art doesn't count haha. I am in one National Honors club, but that's one letter, right? I'm not buying a jacket for one letter. Really. But this program just sounded super cool! We'll see how everything works out....
EDIT: Okay, so that sounded a bit self-interested, so I need to clarify: Greta comes first. Riding is a team effort. I cannot just walk into the ring and say to the judges "Hey, I'm just gonna do this on foot!" Even more important than who can trailer who is do I have a happy, willing horse who is ready for the sights and sounds and pressure of a competitive show? At the moment, probably not haha! The High School Athlete program says you can be a non-competing member, so I really must have a maroon jacket of all things, then that would be our route lol!