Dressage Mom Archive on November 1, 2007, 4:22 pm

The past two days I have seen less stiffness and increased motion in Kaswyn's left front fetlock. It's still a little stiffer than the right, but it might have always been that way. But for sure it's less stiff than it was Saturday, and this makes me very happy.I'll be riding him again next Tuesday, and we'll see how it goes. It's going to be kind of hard to make much of an assessment since he wasn't really lame, just not right. And he was only "not right" at certain tiems of our ride. I guess we'll
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A new plan

Dressage Mom Archive on October 29, 2007, 11:39 pm

Today Kaswyn's left front pastern seemed less stiff than it was the past two days, but it was still a bit stiff. It had improved, which is a good thing. I pointed out to my trainer what I was seeing and she also saw the stiffness I had seen. After a discussion with her, I have decided two things. First, no matter what happens with this current situation, I'm going to modify Kaswyn's work schedule. When he was a young horse I found that I got much better work from him if I rode him every other day.
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Today's Observation

Dressage Mom Archive on October 28, 2007, 2:30 am

As I was walking Kaswyn today I noticed that his left front fetlock wasn't flexing as much as it should when he put his weight on it. It was flexing much less than the right front, which was adequately absorbing the shock and weight of his stride. This would make Kaswyn flat on the left because the pastern/fetlock joint would be stiff and less flexed than it should be, thus making it harder for him to push off and get suspension from it. Think about if you tried to jump in the air without first
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Dressage Mom Archive on October 26, 2007, 11:37 pm

JDLR = Just Don't Look Right. I can't remember where I first heard this term. It was probably from a show like Cops (which I fully dig) or some other real life cop or investigation show. Simply put, it's that little voice in your head that says, "Something isn't right here." Slightly modified, JDFR could mean "Just Doesn't Feel Right." Kaswyn JDFR. Last week he felt like he was doing something funny with his right front leg. I checked the calendar and saw that he was due for shoes. His right front
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Saddle Up - Part 6

Dressage Mom Archive on October 25, 2007, 11:12 pm

Part 1Part 2Part 3Part 4Part 5When I got pregnant with Lily, I asked my doctor about riding Kaswyn. He told me that he didn't think I should ride. I told him that I knew plenty of people that had ridden until very late in their pregnancies (Blair, for one), and besides, I really trusted my horse not to pitch me into the dirt. He replied, "Well, you can ride if you really want to. Just remember that if you fall off and the placenta detaches from your uterus, we can't save the baby. So it's your choice."
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Live from US Nationals!

Dressage Mom Archive on October 24, 2007, 4:21 pm

They are broadcasting a live feed of the US Arabian National Championships! Click here. You have to register to be able to see it, but registration takes less than a minute. I actually got my computer to work for me, and was able to watch some classes. So cool! Much easier than going to New Mexico. If they have this for Sport Horse Nationals in 2009 then maybe you'll be able to watch Kaswyn and I live at the show! I know I'll watch next year if they have it. Am I the only one excited about this??
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Eight things you don't know about me.

Dressage Mom Archive on October 22, 2007, 4:54 pm

I've been tagged! Show Your Pony challenged me to come up with eight things that people probably don't know about me. So off we go..1) I don't like nuts in things. I like selected types of nuts on their own - peanuts, cashews, almonds, and macadamia nuts - but nuts do not belong in ice cream, cookies, cakes, icings, or fudge. The only exceptions are Hershey bars with almonds and Snickers. Walnuts and pecans are the devils kidney stones. Do not give them to me in anything or on anything edible. 2)
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Saddle Up - Part 5

Dressage Mom Archive on October 19, 2007, 1:48 pm

Part 1Part 2 Part 3 Part 4Yes, I appreared I needed to find a new saddle. At first I resisted. But then I started thinking about what it was like for my horse to be ridden in a saddle that hurt his back every day. I thought of what it would be like going to work in high heels that were a size too small and how my back and feet would feel at the end of the day. That did it. A new saddle was a must!As I began looking for dressage saddles, I got advice from my trainer as to what brands were good and
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Saddle Up - Part 4

Dressage Mom Archive on October 16, 2007, 1:01 am

Part 1Part 2Part 3I loved my new Collegiate dressage saddle. It had a nice close contact and I was really able to feel my horse. Plus it felt a lot like my Crosby all purpose saddle, so it wasn't that hard to get used to. I did have to completely change my seat, however. Riding hunt seat in the all purpose saddle I used a much shorter stirrup and a slightly more forward lean to my body. I also gripped the saddle and horse with my knees to stay on, only using my lower leg to squeeze the horse to
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The PSG trot sequence

Dressage Mom Archive on October 11, 2007, 11:11 pm

I had a great lesson today. At the end my trainer was kind enough to video that trot sequence from the PSG test that I talked about in my previous post A rare Monday lesson. When I asked her to video me (not only so I could see how the movement looks when I ride it, but also for this blog), she said "Not problem! I love watching myself ride!" Realizing how that sounded, she quickly added "You know, for training purposes so I can make my riding and seat better! Not just cause I like to see myself
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Air Kaswyn

Dressage Mom Archive on October 10, 2007, 11:39 pm

You know it's going to be a good ride when your trainer says "What's with your horse?"When I got to the barn today it was a good 25-30 degrees cooler than it was for my lesson on Monday. Welcome to Cleveland - if you don't like the weather, wait a few hours and it will change. Anyhow, as I was grooming and tacking my horse I heard the CD player in the arena and I knew that my trainer was running through a musical freestyle (which is a dressage test set to music) with one of her other students. Kaswyn
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A rare Monday lesson

Dressage Mom Archive on October 9, 2007, 12:07 pm

Since my trainer and I are trying to make up for missed rides I'm going to be having two lessons a week this month if we can manage it. So yesterday I had a lesson, and Kaswyn was pretty good. After I warmed up we discussed how Kaswyn had been feeling. I think that Kaswyn is now on the downhill side of his rehab, and that he just needs to build muscle and stamina slowly. So we decided to work on one small part of the test that we'd like to show next year - the Prix St. George. A little background
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A look at the week

Dressage Mom Archive on October 4, 2007, 4:47 pm

My horse will be taking a min-vacation this week. Not because he's lame or anything, but just because of my schedule, my trainer's schedule, and the vet's schedule. Here is the week in a nutshell (warning - heavy on the dressage terminology) - Monday - I wasn't going to ride, but ended up out at the barn and watching my trainer ride Kaswyn. He needed a little bit of convincing to get in front of her leg and stay there, but other than that he worked well. Tuesday - We had a great ride. Especially
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Saddle up - Part 3

Dressage Mom Archive on October 3, 2007, 6:02 pm

Part 1Part 2Even though I'd been riding for years, and even bought a saddle (and two horses) on my own, I still didn't know anything about saddles except if I liked the way they felt under my seat. I asked my dressage trainer at the time for suggestions on what kind of saddle to buy. She said she was partial to Stubben brand saddles (I think), and that I should go to the tack stores and see if I could find a used one that might fit my horse. I thought, fit my horse? Huh? Interesting. Well, he's
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Saddle up - Part 2

Dressage Mom Archive on September 26, 2007, 11:57 pm

Part 1It seemed so unfair. I had earned much of the money in that account. But since it was in both mine and my parents names I had no access to it unless they signed off on it. I decided I'd open my own checking account as soon as possible, but that didn't help me in my current situation. I needed that money now. So I started bargaining with my dad. His argument was that I didn't have a horse, so I didn't need a saddle. When I explained the situation of the borrowed saddle, he said that Blair should
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The quest for the perfect butt

Dressage Mom Archive on September 17, 2007, 12:17 am

This is how Kaswyn's butt looked in 2002. It's not the best his butt looked, but it's the best picture I have of his rear from the side with him standing still. I'd have to say it looked it's best in 2005, when it was at it's most muscled and beefiest. This is how his butt looks now in 2007. Both my trainer and I noticed the deterioration of his butt due to his 18 months off. If you look at the 2007 picture, you'll notice that he has relatively straight lines between the "X" and the triangle, and
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At least we were not in public

Dressage Mom Archive on September 8, 2007, 10:10 pm

We had just gotten home from a birthday party, and I turned on the TV and was trying to find a nice show for the girls to watch while I sat down for a few minutes. Drake and Josh was on Nickelodeon, to which Lily usually says "This is bo-ring!". It was only on for 5 seconds, but in that time we watched Josh lean out a window, only to have the window close on him and trap him in the window. With perfect timing and inflection, Lily says, "Oh, god dammit! He's trapped in the window!"Now, I know I should
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Saddle up - Part 1

Dressage Mom Archive on September 5, 2007, 2:55 pm

"Um, hey dad, can I ask you something?""Sure, what is it?""Can I please take $250 out of my savings account to buy a saddle?"This was me at 19 years old, finally getting the nerve to ask my dad for money for my first saddle. I'd been riding for years, but never had my own saddle. I hadn't really needed one, since every horse I rode had a saddle already. However I found myself in a situation where I needed a saddle. Not wanted (although I did want one) but needed. Here was the situation. I was riding
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Coming attractions

Dressage Mom Archive on September 4, 2007, 3:04 pm

It's been awhile since I've posted anything. The truth is that there is nothing exciting going on with Kaswyn right now. We're both just working on building up our strength and endurance while correcting old bad habits and hopefully preventing any new ones. We are working on half-pass, which I need to get some video of so I can update my Video Glossary. We are schooling both trot and canter half-pass, which is really nice for working on suppleness and collection. Hopefully we'll get some nice video
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Updated Videos

Dressage Mom Archive on August 15, 2007, 12:08 am

After much aggravation with uploading videos to blogger, I have finally updated my Video Glossary of Dressage Movements. Take a peep!I've been having issues viewing the videos, but I hope it's just me...Questions, comments, and suggestions on how to make it better are certainly welcome and encouraged. Speak up!
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