You know us horsepeople, we love our adorable beasts. Jaina is my Quarter Horse mare, and we live in San Diego County in Southern California. I haven’t always owned her, and I haven’t always lived in California. I’m from the Midwest, and we did things a bit different there. I’m on a mission to document everything I can about Jaina and I and our adventures in horse ownership in the land of dry lots and pipe corrals.
Wow, I can't believe I haven't written here since June. Talk about a slacker blogger and a terrible horse mom!
Things have changed a lot with Jaina. I am now riding her twice a week in lessons, and she's being ridden the other three days a week by trainers. She is doing SO WELL. I am riding her in a new reining bit (I don't actually know what kind it is but it costs $500 which is why I'm borrowing it) and she's doing so well. She's so much more forward, so much fun to ride.
I took her on a trail ride to the beach several weeks ago and she was great. She even walked right out into the water and did wonderfully. I was so proud. :) Here are some recent pics of her and the trainer!
Jaina is partway done with month 2 of training, and she's progressing so nicely. I rode her on Saturday for the second time since she started training and she's like a different horse. She backs so nicely, she is loping so great, she's calm, she's wonderful. I even got a couple good pictures of her looking almost like a real reiner! We had a ton of fun.
Next weekend we are doing our first fun show, a Ranch Horse Trail Challenge. I suspect this will be a TON of fun, and I will definitely have pictures to share. Without further ado, here are some pictures of Jaina from yesterday :)
Jaina has officially started her reining training, and I can't wait to see the results. She's only been in it for 3 days, and so far the report is decent. Her biggest problem is randomly stopping and not wanting to keep going, so I am sure they will fix that up with no problem.
This weekend was gorgeous, and I gave her a bath and conditioned her mane and tail. She moved to a new corral now that is much closer to "the action" at the ranch, and seems to have fit in. There is a new mini donkey at the ranch that she is smitten by, and her name is Martha.
I am totally hooked on reining now. I went to the Del Mar Spring Classic horse show over the weekend to cheer on my new barnmates, and it was a great time. It made me want to take part even more! I really think Jaina could do it.
I had a lesson last Thursday night, and it was a lot of fun. I'm focusing right now on keeping Jaina moving forward, stopping on "whoa", backing up, and loping. I'm supposed to lope 15-20 circles per ride. I have a tendency to hang on her face, causing her to be unsettled, raise her head, and not relax. So each ride my goal is to do the following:
Keep my hands forward, no hanging on her mouth
On a circle, correct my laying my outside rein on her neck, using outside leg, and pulling the inside rein towards the center of the circle and not back to my waist.
Stopping by putting my feet forward in the stirrups and saying whoa.
Teaching Jaina that "whoa" actually means back up, and not stop.
Keeping her going forward and not sucking back and over-collecting.
I also tried on a saddle over the weekend that apparently doesn't fit. I'm bummed out because it was really comfy, but there were large dry spots when I was done riding. I guess it's not wide enough. The annoying thing is that if the saddle is too wide, the underside of the horn (pommel?) pushes on her wither. So she needs something wide enough for her shoulders with enough clearance over her wither. She's harder to fit than I expected!
Fun times, and an exhausting weekend! Can't wait for my next lesson!