A few days ago, my mom and two young nieces came over from the north coast for a summer visit. The girls had their first horseback riding experiences here two years ago and were ready for another go! It was also my younger niece, A's, birthday and on the evening of their arrival we had some great cake made by my mom and decorated by A's sister, M.
Pre cake, we got our appetites up with some fishing at the local river. My husband made the kid's day as ever getting them set up for fishy success and with just a little assistance my niece A landed this beauty in no time!
That evening, I also enlisted A's help in a little horse experiment. Trimming hooves has become nigh impossible this summer after a practically non existent winter, the hooves are rock hard and trying to shed out old sole even with nippers is almost a joke. I personally don't have enough water to spare to keep their eating areas wet and get a good soak going that way, so I decided to try packing a damp clay poultice into Scrappy's hooves and then booting and leaving them on overnight. Since I was fairly certain I wasn't going to ruin his feet overnight but caution is the better part of valor, I only did 2 hooves instead of 4, for starters.
bag o' mud and a couple sizes of boot just in case
assistant A gets acquainted with Scrappy
pretty much like it sounds..gob mud into sole and put boot on
After a hearty breakfast the girls were ready to saddle up, so I pulled my faithful horse saint,Blaze, out of the field. I feel guilty these days that I don't use Blaze more, I think he really enjoys some time out being used, but he is great babysitter/kid/LD horse, and I don't do a whole lot of that stuff lately. Anyhow aside from basic maintenance and saying hey in his field, Blaze hadn't been worked in the last month, but I knew he would be good for the kids and in fact I decided to up the ante to a "Trail ride" through the neighborhood instead of going in circles in the arena like last time.
<3 my sweet boy <3
The girls were all game for the different riding experience and since my usual kid saddle, the "western" Abetta has been bastardized beyond recognition, including not having any way to attach stirrups currently, I threw the Skito and treeless Sensation up there. I figured with me hand walking him it was a safe enough bet and lord know it's kind on the hind end, especially for those not used to riding!
M on Blaze
A on board
We had a nice cruise through the HOT neighborhood with my mom and I walking and the girls trading off riding Blaze, though we all walked together on foot on the pavement part heading out where we had to pass the Beast of Doom:
Blaze thinks this mild looking Donkey is devil spawn
A getting toasty riding Blaze. She ditched using stirrups by her second time on board and wanted to know if I didn't have 4 saddle horses we could ALL ride and really go somewhere. Horsey girl potential indeed!
My feeding crew led back to the barn by doxie Wilbur