Thursday, September 18, 2008

September in Spokane

We're still in the beautiful month of September--perfect weather for working with our horses. Next week will signal the weather turn.

Yesterday, mid-80's--sunshine and perfection--I got the privilege of riding with a couple of friends in the Hangman Creek area. We went on a mid-morning ride that was just FUN--lots of chatting, trotting, walking and relaxing.

Later that day I cleaned stalls and worked with my filly, Cia. She's doing pretty well, but I'm still trying to get her collected. Also, she's a little confused on "whoa." But it's not bad. I think Billy, her trainer, and I, give her subtly different signals, so it's a matter of her getting used to me and listening to me. She's a baby still.

So, to get her in the stopping mode I circle her and keep her on the rail in a steady gait--walk, trot--then, when she's listening and moving nicely at the gait I've asked for, I sit back and see if she'll stop--then pull back on the reins if she doesn't. I've found that if she's moving out at her own gait rather than mine--it signals that she's just not listening to me. So, moving at the gait I ask is tied in heavily with stopping when I ask.

Beautiful is always able to watch what happens in the roundpen because she is right next to it. She LOVES to watch me work with the other horses. And, I have to think it is a good part of her training to watch and be so close.

The barn cats are FUNNY. Number 42 follows me to the main house every day and sits by my front door crying. She is confused about the "barn" part of her barn cat job. The "house" cats hiss her away and then she stands at the edge of the yard staring at me.

Yesterday, every time I came out to go to the barn, she followed me back like a dog. Then, I'd sit out in the grass/dirt/weeds and let she and her sister play around me. Their favorite game is being tickled with a long piece of wheat and then attacking it. I don't know if they've actually killed any mice yet, but I haven't seen any mice around since they moved in.

This weekend our MDH club is hosting a Ribbon Ride--Sunday at Riverside State Park--2:00. Kids under 18 can win prizes if they find 1 of 4 ribbons that will be tied to trees in the park. This should be a blast. It's free and easy to partcipate.

I wrote about Manito Park a few days ago. Well, they were in the Spokesman Review this morning. Apparently, the rose garden, Rose Hill, was ranked as the United States top All-American Rose Selection Display Garden. There are over 130 such gardens nationwide.

Manito boasts about 400 varieties of roses and a total of over 2,000 plants. I think that's awesome!

You Tube tour of Rose Garden

Friends of Manito Website

The spirit of conservation--conserving our local parks & forests, waterways, & mustangs--is a great and positive force for us and our children.

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