Our trail to happiness !

Our trail to happiness !

Monday, July 22, 2013

Away Ride!! July 21st 2013

      The night  before the AWAY ride, I can't sleep! I'm so excited and nervous !!

   The morning comes and I start to get ready. I can't even eat breakfast I'm too nervous! It's not long and Kaaren arrives with her trailer! Surprisingly enough Kizz loads fairly well! I was pretty surprised since he hadn't been trailered since coming home from when he was boarded at Dena's to get started to saddle.

We get on our way! Once we turn into the driveway at Greenfield Stables, my belly starts to churn! I'm so nervous he is going to get off the trailer and whinny and spin around and not pay ANY attention to me! We unload the horses and walk them around the farm a bit. We take them into the barn and into the indoor to check everything out. Other than him walking pretty fast he was very respectful and not as nervous as I expected!

We lead the horses back and I tie Kizz to the side of the trailer. He gets busy looking around at the cows and horses. Kaaren takes Odin off to get his hock and leg hosed off as he kicked at the trailer partition (when he was trailered from his house to mine) His hair on his leg was rubbed off some.

As Kaaren and Odin walked off, Kizz started to Whinny some, but they stayed in our sight and he wasn't too bad. I got him brushed off and saddled up fairly well. But time Kaaren and Odin got back and saddled up, Kizz wasn't too bad! not screaming or spinning like I expected!

We lead the horses into the riding ring and I use the mounting block to mount. A friend of mine - our guide to the trails for the day, Carole is all mounted and waiting on a cute little half Arab mare.

We head out and are on our way!! Kizz is wanting to be close to his buddy so I let him go up in behind Odin and the new mare and Carole come in behind us. He keeps putting his ears back and turning his head a bit to see her, but walks along fine! We get through the fields and come to the trails! The trails are great and there is lots to experience.  There are some small puddles and mud holes that we hug the trees as much as possible and go around. There is a very steep incline that he does well on!

As the ride goes on, he is very good! He doesn't spook at anything, or refuse anything. The only thing he does is avoids the mud and such as much as he can. I can tell at this point he starts to get a little nervous and sticks as close to Odin as he can. We get out onto some fields and he settles in better! We cross our first beaver pond! it's not deep but far across and not clear but muddy but he goes in without much fuss and crosses fine!! After some more trails we cross back across again. This time he walks right in and crosses with no hesitation at all. With us at the rear he is much more grumpy. He is worried they are going to go on ahead of us ... Coming out of the stream they pick up a trot and we do as well, they get a bit ahead of us, and he hops and bucks a bit. we get him stopped up and then on we go again and he is fine after that. He doesn't seem to like to be in the lead or in the rear, but in the middle.

At one point we stop in a field (where he pees basically on command lol) and as they're munching a bit, the little mare walks a few paces away from us towards the trail.. He backs up and squats a few times like he is going to rear . I yell at him and he stops. (We aren't sure why he did it at the time but after we realize it is because the little mare was leaving us)

Farther along on the trail, Kizz seems to settle in even better and even trots and takes the lead up ahead! We lope a little bit and he does well.

                  A picture of Kaaren & Odin on the right, and Kizz & I to the left, on the trail that Carole took :)

On the way back we trot on a head but see we've left Carole and the little grey Arab mare behind. We go back and she is walking (to give her knee a break) we stop and let the horses eat. I mention to Karen that I think Kizz acted up back on the trail because the mare was walking away... she suggests we wait and let them walk on ahead and see how he does.

As soon as they get out ahead of us, he stops eating and I can tell it's upsetting him that she's going on with out us. He even whinnys a bit. We give it a while, then return to the trail and head off. We trot a bit and going up a little knoll I let him pick up the canter. He bucks a few times, so I pull him up and give a shout. So we return back to the woods where the field started and walk back. He again takes off a bit trotting so we stop turn and trot back to the woods and return at a walk again. This time he walks fine and although we can both tell he's excited to go , he doesn't speed up. We arrive at the stables and decide to ride in the ring a while!

It's a huge beautiful ring with beautiful footing. It's been so long since we had anywhere nice like this to ride. I ask Kizz to trot around and we do some figure 8s. He does well. Kaaren canters around a bit and then we dismount and chat with Carole some. Kaaren asks if I cantered. I say, No. I'm nervous to ask for a canter in that big of an area! on the narrow little trails with no where for him to run off to I'm much more comfortable!

She says we are here and it's at the end of the ride, we should do it. I know she's right. but of course it takes some encouragement for me to do it haha She says, just choose one lead even! just his good lead, so I give in.

I mount up again and we trot some circles, I choose his good lead.. I kiss and ask for it and he picks it up after only 2 tries. We canter at least a good full circle. She says are you going to do the other direction ?

I feel much better about it and say, YUP!

The other lead takes a few more tries, and at one point he picks up the wrong lead but is jumping in the air with his front end to switch leads and I pull him up. So I ruin that try! but after a couple more tries we get it!!

both leads done! yahooo!! Thanks again to Kaaren we end our ride on a perfect note!

we unsaddle the horses and let them roam around the arena and roll and relax while we chat.

After we return to the trailer and wait for Kaaren as she hoses off and wraps Odin's leg, Kizz is almost sleeping beside me he is so relaxed!! I'm so excited and happy !!

I can't believe we did it!! I'm still on Cloud 9.

Next hurdle to cross is me riding out by myself and meeting Kaaren on the trail!! I'm so nervous that he's going to be upset riding out alone and dump me. He's very dependant on the other horse , but I know we need to get past this and be a team just the two of us!  It would be much nicer for Kaaren to ride out and meet us on the trail to ride together rather than riding up the big hill alone and coming to ride with me!

I get belly bubbles just thinking of it!! but I know it's coming and need to get over it!!
Also our ACTRA Judged Pleasure ride is coming up soon and that's awesome!!

wish us luck we survive the ALONE ride and I'll never complain about being nervous.... no I can't promise that.. lol!

Friday, July 19, 2013

"Dirt bikes and 4 wheelers" July 18 2013 ride

Kizz and I had a wonderful ride last night! Kaaren came up and rode Coby with us. We did one of the first trails we ever did. The ditch that Kaaren had such trouble getting Kizz to cross that first time, he walked right over it! (Coby went along ahead of us though) most of he way he was uncertain and stayed in behind Coby.
We came out onto the road and went down along it some. We only had one car go by and one truck , he didn't mind at all.. It's one of my fears - that he'll jump out in front of a car because he's concentrating on something new and scary away from the road. He has serious tunnel vision sometimes!

We turned in on the old dirt road that circles back behind my house and takes you into Millville. The whole way Kizz was staying right behind Coby and wouldn't take the lead. So we walked most of it. Any times we did trot, he would shy away and scoot left or right whenever we came to a puddle he had to go around or a rock in the road. I kept my seat well and am a little better prepared for these things now I think! Yahoo! Some dirt bikes and a 4 wheeler came along behind us and he didn't mind at all! we just pulled off to the side to let them pass!

As soon as we got to the trail that he is familiar with, he immediately took the lead and wanted to trot! We trotted more then, once we got to where the trail was very nice footing, he wanted to race home! he was having a blast at that point! the trail was nice and has even been mowed! nice and wide and perfect! Any of the muddy spots on the way home, Kizz hesitated but went right though not waiting for Coby to take the lead. It was a great ride, the first time we left home one way and came home another.  We went for almost 3 hours!

next up is our Away ride!! so nervous and excited for it!!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

we got this!! (our new motto) July 6th,10th&14th

- July 6th was to be mine and Kizz's first real accomplishment

 Kaaren arrived on Odin her young endurance horse, I was already mounted and waiting (I was worried how I'd mount with Kizz prancing around looking at this new horse! ) She said she'd like to hose Magic off so I dismounted and got the garden hose hooked up and going.

After when I went to mount Kizz surprised me and stood quietly for me to mount!!

We headed out to the new trails, we did the muddy puddle area without as much fuss but was right on Odin's butt going through. (no tree hugging this time haha)  we trotted some more on the trails and eventually found the way to that logging road that goes to Kaaren's house.  We got onto that road and trotted a bit. Kizz was excellent! he was having a bit of a hard time keeping up with Odin's trot (he's like a trotting machine haha) but he just kept at it but felt he was pushing himself and wanted to canter but didn't break into it (and I was too nervous to ask!)

 We came to a spot on the trail up a slope that Odin cantered and Kizz immediately picked up a canter!! He did great and felt very under control and felt much less stressed! I was sooo happy!! This was the first time I had cantered him since the indoor arena over a year ago! What a feeling!

 We had some trouble later on the trail getting him to cross some tiny ditches that I found his stubborn streak lol ( he just stops and cocks his leg and says NO ) after much dismounting and crossing and mounting and crossing we got over them a few times. (I had a good work out, burned over 1100 calories according to my HRM haha )

It was a Ground breaking ride in my issues and I think he clicked in that this is what we are going to now be doing!! He might even like it!!
We rode 2 hr, 45 min and did 9 miles!

- July 10  our next ride was great too!  Kaaren rode Coby while I rode Kizz, We went out the trails and later crossed the road and went along it for bit across the road first time . He spooked a bit at the trot at some ant hills and was scared of the gravestones as we rode along side the graveyard, we had a car go by us on the pavement and he didn't mind at all!

We had trouble crossing a fairly big ditch that he couldn't jump but would have to go down and up over it.. She had to lead us over it (grabbing a rein and riding along side me) but he went through it after that, then on the way back over it -he went but after a bunch of prodding and Coby coming back and going through it with us.

We rode on the rail way bed which is lovely footing and wide open and straight ,Kizz even wanted to take the lead and trotted right along! (we were with Coby so we left Kaaren and Coby in the dust haha ) it was really easy to tell this ride that KIZZ is LOVING it!!! yahooo!!!

Kaaren said she can tell Kizz and I are starting to become a team and she can really tell both of our confidence is building!! we did 7.7 miles

Kizz and I on the railway bed

-July 14th, Kaaren again brings her younger Endurance horse (as that is who she'll be riding with me in the JP in Aug)

We head down the trails to get to the rail way again where we can do some trotting. On the way Kizz lead the way through the narrow rocky path that he usually has to follow a horse through! I was pleased!

 We trotted a lot down the trails TO the railway bed, Kizz enjoyed himself, we picked up a canter again on the nice road to keep up with Odin's trot. He seems much more comfortable at the canter.  We trotted almost the whole way into Millville, then crossed the road, on the other side we went up the tracks some until we came to the stream ..there was a nice little trail that takes you right to the stream (It had a huge puddle that you couldn't get around that we had to go through but kizz went right through it, he rushed and wasn't happy but we did it! At the stream Kaaren and Odin had to come back and LEAD us again into the stream but he went.. It was his VERY first time standing in water like that!! he sloshed hiimself with his wet tail and scared himself but he cooled off a bit , had a drink and stood still. Once I gave him the go ahead to leave, he bounded out of the water and through the trail back to the rail way. (it was like he said, I'm gonna DO it, but i ain't Gonna LIKE it! lol )
Kizz took the lead and even cantered off and on on cue coming back on the trail some and he did great, we had a great ride! I'm feeling really like we can do this JP coming up!!

We did 11 miles!

our next plans are to trailer out this upcoming Sunday to a stables where we will see how he reacts to being somewhere new and ride! Hope it's as fun as all our adventure so far!!

Happy Happy Happy!!!

So it happens..   Kaaren came up and rode Coby and I rode Kizz! I was nervous but not bad!

 We went out the same trails we had been going on but tried to find a way down to the old woods road that would connect my trails to her trails to her house! We couldn't find the way, on the way back in the big pasture Kaaren told me to trot away from her and Coby and see how we do. Kizz was fine and then we tried some more on the way home! I was so very happy!! Slowly I was gaining my confidence!! .

-Our next ride was Canada day - my birthday Kaaren came up and rode Coby with me.

We found a new trail off another pasture to try! we had to cross a rock wall in a skinny path that Kizz wasn't happy about, he did go though, after Coby and Kaaren went through, it also had some muddy wet parts, and she and Coby walked through but Kizz was having none of it!! He backed us into some trees where 'I became one with the trees' we said haha  but after some fuss and Kaaren & Coby coming back and riding right beside us, he went through it!

We rode around and even trotted to get away from the flies on those trails and had a blast!! Kizz did wonderful!! the way back he went through the muddy wet spot much better but still had to be on top of Cobys tracks to feel safe enough lol

best birthday I've had in a long time!!!

Kaaren and I started talking about trailering the horses out for a fun trail ride (and would be great to see how Kizz would react to it all! ) and as we got discussing it, she comes back later saying we might as well do an actual ENDURANCE ride!!! There is a Judged Pleasure ride coming up on a weekend (Aug 3&4) that she would ride with me (she'd do the CTR that Saturday and then do the JP with me on Sunday) and she thinks we can get Kizz ready in time! It's not far away for trailering and it's only $20 to enter, also it's not a timed ride. It is 14miles long and at a beautiful farm and there is even a lake to swim in after (If kizz can get over his fear of water lol)

So It's decided.. we are going on an actual ACTRA trail ride!!! not in 2015, but in 2013!!! Can I do it?! we'll see!!

a picture of Kizz , myself & Coby from our July 1 ride ,
At this point I have lost 23lbs and many inches! I have my own endurance saddle now too! 

Kaaren to the rescue again

A few weeks later, I get thinking.. I can't leave it at this! I just Can't, we've come so far!! Maybe I should board him out again, use a ring and do more ring work, or have a group of people to go out on little trail rides with.

 I ask Kaaren if I could hire her to trailer Kizz somewhere for me. I explain to her I need to do something to help me with my confidence.  She mentions she doesn't think the key to getting over my fears isn't boarding out. She asks if there is anything she can do to help?

So I swallow my pride and ask her to come up and ride Kizz herself!  She says she's not sure how it will help me gain my confidence on Kizz, but if its what I'd like she will do it!  I think seeing someone doing things with Kizz that I am too nervous to do will boost my confidence that he CAN handle those things!

June 19th , Kaaren comes up and we saddle Kizz  up and lunge him. I tell her he is very good and never bucks or acts foolish, the only thing he does is he will race around at the canter when he gets towards the open part of the field (out of the corner)
boy did he make me out to be a liar!! he bucked and pulled and acted Foolish!!! What a horse!

He eventually got settled down and used to her (he's very sensitive to where you look and how you move!) she brought him up to where I ride at the top of my driveway and got on him. She rode him around working on bending and she did some things he hadn't done before. After a while, he of course- as always got bored of that stuff and started to ignore her. She kept giving him pressure didn't let up and kept at it more and more until he paid attention and moved!  It was good to see how he reacted to being pushed (rather than me just pussy footing around him and quitting before he might get upset)

It all went well, she said she had a good time! We made plans for her to come back soon as we'd go out on a trail with her riding him!

So on June 23rd, Kaaren came up again, and this time we saddled right up and went down the driveway, along the road and out the access road to the fields.. We got to the trails and we went for 2 hours! we came to a very small ditch in the trail that kizz would NOT step over.. she pushed and pushed him ! It was so good for me to see that he wasn't going to BLOW UP over being pushed a little! After some hard work on her part, she got Kizz over the ditch a few times and the rest of our ride went well!

Back in the fields she asked me to stop and wait and she trotted Kizz out into the big open field! He did great, no bolting off into the sunset , no foolishness at all! HE did it!! it was so good for me to see!!

another great ride came to an end and I felt so good about it!!! we had went for 2 hours!

We made plans for our next ride ..

The next ride we went for another nice long ride, She trotted Kizz in the pasture on the way out this time and he was perfect. We explored some new trails, went up and down some steep areas (where kizz had Kaaren holding on his mane and he didn't mind at all ), he really seemed to start to enjoy this!!!

  I told Kaaren , I was now ready to get back on my horse!! I was still nervous of course but I felt it was time. I didn't want to leave it long enough that I was working myself up to be nervous about it more! so we made plans for the next ride!!

my next hurdle

Winter comes and snow gets deep quickly.. no more riding for me!

Kizz and Coby luckily are back to being buddies and get along great!!  it's a blessing!!

I groom and love them lots over the winter, I even get out for a few bareback snow rides on Coby and I decide its time I get brave enough and hop on Kizz bareback!! It goes great! We just walk around and he avoids puddles left from some warm weather and melting snow. I just love my boy!! I am so much happier! my whole life shows it too, everyone can tell!

Over the winter I have decided it Is time for me to get into shape. I've been overweight for a long time, I can't get down on the floor to play with my kids, my knees hurt, and my back aches at night. I need to get in healthier shape! In the spring I join a boot camp 30 minutes away. I go 2x a week and work out with a lovely group of ladies.  I start to loose some weight and feel great, I LOVE this!!

Spring arrives I'm feeling so much more confident in myself and happy, I invite Nicole, a childhood friend who always had horses up to ride with me! She can ride Coby and I'll ride Kizz.. I'm so excited to show her my horses, she's never seen them.

I haven't rode Kizz since my short bareback ride in the driveway and a little tune up ride the night before but I'm feeling some false confidence haha

Off we go! Kizz is feeling quite excited and hyper I can tell from the way he is stepping off , about halfway out the pasture along a turn in the trail along the field, I suggest we trot a little to help them blow off some steam. I touch Kizz's sides lightly and cluck (Been riding Coby too much!! I normally ONLY cluck to kizz!)

Kizz jumps forward then puts his head down and starts bucking ! Even quiet calm Coby kicks up his heels a bit!!  I'm unseated and realize I'm going down .. I pick a side/spot empty of kicking hoofs and bail!

Kizz of course stops as soon as I'm off , looks at me really funny.. then as I'm getting up to grab him... he seees his chance and takes off galloping and tearing around the field. GREAT

A half an hour later , Kizz runs out of steam and slows down, another 10 minutes or so he stops and lets me catch him. Now that he's all worked up, sweating and even more excitable than he was before I'm nervous to get on. But I know we can leave it that way. I remount and we continue on our way. A few more times he starts to crow hop a little but I yell and we get over it. The branches laying on the trail touching his legs makes him kick and dance ..We don't ride very far and turn around and head home. Once my friend has went home and I'm alone, I get thinking..many things run through my mind.. I can't do this! I'm not brave enough (or obviously smart enough) to start a horse! He's never going to make a good trail horse being scared of branches and puddles, He's too much for me, I'm a timid rider, we just aren't going to work out :(

I again give up ..

still new to this! Kizz & I trying out trails

I 'm feeling so good about this.. No less nervous about our next upcoming ride but at least I got 1 trail ride in and survived! surely Kizz wasn't going to kill me on our 2nd ride! lol

December comes and we get in another ride, It goes great! I feel like I'm just sitting on Kizz's back and am a passenger though. I let him move and go where he wants basically. I am scared to touch his sides for fear he will jump ahead bolting off.  We got through the fields and went into a trail . We did fairly well! Kizz was hesitant to do new things and luckily there were no puddles or ditches for us to encounter !

We chat more about endurance riding, and I start to wonder if maybe in a few years Kizz and I could do it! My daughter would be in school in a couple years and I would surely by then be riding alone and confident and could get the miles in needed to get us in shape!? What fun would that be!?! My new goal has been set!! by 2014 I plan to be riding on trails getting in shape for some actual endurance rides in 2015!! Kizz would be 9 and I'd be 37! would we be too old? we were going to see!

On the way back along the tree line Kaaren suggests we pick a spot and pick up a trot, I stick close to Coby and the woods on the other side I feel prepared. I cluck (with no pressure from my legs) and he picks up a nice little Trot! First time on trail! We trot to a turn and slow down. We survived!!!

another great ride, not long but I felt we accomplished a alot! met Hubby on the trail with the 4 wheeler and he graciously grabbed a pic of Kizz & I and Kaaren & Coby

along comes our Second chance ..in the form of a new neighbor , Kaaren

November 2012, I am talking to a new friend I met on FB, who lives near me . Her name is Kaaren and she's a blessing.. Helping me fit Coby to his new easy boots and even adjusted his back for him when he started showing some pain in his back from my old western saddle that is getting a little worn out.

She offers to come ride Coby while I ride Kizz out on trail! Can I do it? Get past my biggest fear - huge open fields , I picture him bolting off with his break neck Arabian speed, with me dragged along  :D

We plan for an evening and that's that! an hour before she comes.. I get so nervous. I know I have to get over this. Kizz is a wonderful sweet horse and I am truly holding him back.

I secretly mix myself a very very stiff rye and gingerale drink, I down it and then down another. I go out to wait for Kaaren and grooming Kizz.

Kaaren arrives and graciously offers me one of her Bob Marshall endurance saddles to try. (She brought one to use on Coby as well, Coby loved it!)  We saddle up and head down the driveway. I'm nervous as can be, I hadn't even lunged kizz in a while!  We get out on the road, (another fear of mine is him leaping into a car because he's looking at something in the opposite direction!) I squish in between Coby and the ditch feeling much more secure that Cobys big white body is blocking the way to in front of a car. I feel pretty brave (liquid brave lol) and up the access road to the fields we go.

We are walking up the access road and Kaaren starts to tell me all about endurance riding and some of her many adventures! It's very interesting and exciting! Could KIZZ and I someday do an endurance ride!?!

We get to the end of the access road and to the open pastures.. I wait patiently for a pause in her stories to tell her that I've gone far enough and am ready to turn... before I know it we are walking along the edge of the pasture and well onto our way along the field.. it's too late!! I try to just hold a tight rein (on Kizz's excited fast paced walk and high head looking all around excitedly!  I am so used to low headed dead quiet Coby this is so nerve wracking to me! ) and pay attention to her stories and loose my nervousness in them!

As we go along the field we get to the end  I tell Kaaren I'm very happy with how we've done and I'm ready to turn.. ( I now think how she must have been laughing in her head, we'd rode maybe 20 minutes, and she normally rides hours! )

Kaaren suggests we cut THROUGH the field over to a little building my husbands grandfather has for hunting. I'm very nervous but too embarassed to tell her I'm scared to go out in the open field!  We go to the building, Kizz snorts at it and looks at it funny but we survive! no bolting ! I even felt brave enough to get a picture!

I'm still shaking when we get home, but I'm so dang proud of both Kizz and I!!

Finally Ride Kizz- the first part of our journey! Feb 2012

With some help, and lots of tears and nervous stomachs , I got him started! It's a long nerve wracking journey, but we just keep trudging along!! Some days I have to actually MAKE myself go ride.  Some days the ride are so great and I leave feeling so happy and feel good for myself, the happiness I've been missing comes back!!! I start getting in better shape from all the riding I'm doing and at home make a few changes to be healthier! We throw out the deepfryer and cut back on fatty foods, soda pop and sweets! 

Feb 5 2012 (1st ride) - lunged
Walked and turned on lunge line

Feb 6 ( 2nd ride)- lunged , I rode walk /trott ( 2 other horses in arena)

Feb 8 (3rd ride) - lunged , walked off lead , lots of turning, trotted on lead

Feb 10 (4th ride)- got right on- walked. 2 other horses in arena , trot off lead first time , backed

Feb 12 ( 5th ride) - got on - walked turns, (Jenny rode too) trotted circles, I came off , trotted circles again , backed

Feb 14 (6th ride) - got on , walked circles, he kept stopping to poo and smell poo so gave him a little pressure and he hopped forward , learned serpentines. Backed. You lunged him, worked on changing directions and walking on lunge.

Feb 16th (7th ride)
Loped on lunge few strides

Feb 18 ( 8th ride) walked and did circles worked on whoa ( rode with you and Belinda)

Feb 22   (9th ride) - worked on serpentines
Jogged 3 circles, short and sweet ride :-)

Feb. 28 (10th ride) - walked worked on circles a little frisky kept threatening to buck but didn't follow through. Jogged few circles , rode around arena while another horse being lunged. Then jogged around a little more. I worked on sitting back and not leaning forward. Needs work! Got on lunge and loped few strides each way. Kizz crow hopped a bit. Walked some more. More circles.

Feb 29th (11th ride) - groomed, tacked up, rode at walk , circles, went perfect. 3 horses were in arena and left , kept walking perfect didn't get upset. Jogged around arena each direction 3 x. Kept going really good. Walked some more , worked on whoa, then backed. Circles. Then dismounted off by myself. Went A 1. Best ride yet.

March 1 St - (12th ride) quick ride , tacked up got on, 2 horses left , he was fine. Walked , trotted both ways , dismounted , un tacked, treats.

March 3 (13 th ride) - rode with 3  other horses in arena , did small circles , then we all started in one direction, then went to inside and trotted one at a time did both directions a few times. Rode 45 min or more

Backed perfect ( was a little lazy, kept stopping. But walked off well once I gave a little pressure and clucked)

(kizz lunged out to bite Richard) and pinned his ears back after that. Every time a horse trotted or cantered by he would stop or get dancey but by the end he was walking along and ok when they went by. He did great tho. Started dropping his head and rounding his back today. 

March 4 (14th ride) walked , trotted both directions , tried to get a canter on the lunge line but wouldn't pick it up. I was holding him back, and very nervous of him rushing into it , racing around.
Trotted both directions again
Walked around cooled out , dismounted ( ava and chris came to watch first time)

March 7 (15th ride)- got on, walked all around quite a while ( with Richard & sue)  I trotted both directions. 2 x. Whoa, backed. Perfect ride. He was very quiet and laid back. Aadon got a pony ride then we left.

March 8 (16th ride) - went out took kizz out of pasture with aadon  took Kizz into arena , turned on lights , brushed him, bridled & saddled him. Ashley came in with her horse. Then held Kizz while I mounted up. Rode around at walk. ( dena came in) I trotted both directions. Then walked circles rest of the time. Whoa. Backed up. He kept stopping and had to be prodded to go. He was very lazy. Good ride. Treats then to the barn.
( at this point I was still nervous to trot unless my coach was there)

March 10 - (17th ride) - got Kizz out of pasture , no one there ( alex and Kate was with me) brought in. Lunged him. Walk, jog, lope,  walk
Tacked up, alex held him , mounted, walked circles. Turning.
(Belinda came in) jogged both ways.  Walked a little more. Whoa. Backed
Alex got on for a few circles. Did good.

March 12 -  no one at barn
Lunged Kizz he was very hyper and whinnying and kept tossing his head. We jogged mainly but loped both ways and walked both ways. We then did some leadline in the arena. Turning him away from me and turning on the forehand and haunches , treats then into the barn. (too nervous to get on alone)

March 15- (18th ride) rode , ashley & Gary rode sue & sun. Walked circles then walked and trot both ways , he was very hyper to go. Any tiny amount of pressure and he would trot off. His trot wasnt as smooth and wouldn't stay out on rail well  (sort of Kept putting his ears back at the other horses a bit) Whoa , backed. Good.

March 16th ( 19th ride!) -
Belinda helped me tack up , rode alone no other horses. He was very fast. Walking around really fast. Trotted both directions 3 circles 2x each way. He raced around a little bit but not so bad that I couldnt sit to it. He flung his head a couple times but didn't act foolish at all. After he quieted down some he started dropping his head and holding the bit and lifting his back. Walked around cooled out. Stopped middle of arena and dismounted.
Treated him

( Dena said to try toms barrel saddle next time I ride)

March 18- (20th) got him out of pasture 3:45 nice and sunny and warm. Went into arena. Saddled up in toms saddle.
Walk circles, walked around rail, trotted both ways. Kizz was extremely lazy. Had to keep prodding him to trot
Holly took videos.
Walked cooled out. Put back in pasture.

March 20 6:00pm - (21st ride)
Tacked up, walked around, circles, jogged both ways (head flinging tonight) started jogging a few strides then stopping. Also tried jogging and doing S 's while jogging. Tried turning on haunches and he did it very very well for first time!  Trotted some more
Walked, backed - dismounted in middle of arena. Untacked, then dena lunged him he picked up the lope every time right on cue. Dropped back to trot then asked again picked up perfect. Repeated both directions. Then walked on lunge changing directions few times. Then I cooled him out walked in hand a while.

March 21 - (22 ride)- had a lesson with Jenny & steffanie  , nice long ride. Warmed up horses doing bending , then worked on getting a controlled jog. And making him go out on the rail while jogging. Held for 3 strides then let off and repeated until he slowed down some. Then as I came around other horses I bumped him a bit with that outside rein and he kept his attention on me. We jogged both ways multiple times . We cooled out and did dome turning on the haunches and side passing.
Perfect ride. Kizz was very pleasant , (kept dropping his head and lifting his back too)

March 22- (23rd ride) brought Kizz in alone. He was very hyper and wouldn't pay any attention to me. Bridled him. Dena came in , helped me saddle him. She lunged him. He was ignoring her and not paying attention. Finally I rode but he was still ignoring me. Eventually he started to pay attention. We would walk 1/4 barn trott 1/4 barn over and over again. From middle of one wall to middle of next wall.  Then corner to corner. Then at the end. I did serpentines up the arena and back 3 times. He was good. Dismounted middle of arena he was quiet and good. I hand walked him to cool him off,  She brushed him all off.  Then treated. He was quiet then.

March 25 - (24th ride )
Got out of pasture, tacked up alone, got on , walked around surpentines. dena came out ,  Then started trotting circles 3 across width of arena 2 circles each one switching directions as I go onto next circle. Ride perfect.

March 27- (25 ride) got Kizz, brushed, tacked up, (with Stephanie) dena came in, held him while I mounted, walked serpentines, then started jogging 1/4 arena then  walk 1/4 arena he was  perfect. Very quiet and laid back. (Jenny came ) then I asked Kizz to lope to the  right, tried to pick it up once but he slipped. Tried again. Picked it up great. Went half a circle. Then changed directions, more walk/ jogging/ whoa. Then after they loped that way we did Kizz again. He picked it up pretty good. Loped about a half a circle ! Sat back and he went back to trot
Did excellent! first time loping under saddle!!

March 28 (26 th ride) - got him, brought him in , brushed him off, tacked up, mounted. He was stepping quite fast for the first little bit, we first did walking circles then trotting circles. Then we moved to walking/trotting 1/4 arena. Got him going nice and slow and settled down good. Then asked for a lope. Right lead took a couple tries. Had to keep slowing down his trot and asking again  Then we loped half a circle. Brought him down to a walk. Then switched directions and trotted again, picked up going to left very well and loped another half circle.  Cooled him off doing serpentines and dena & aadon left to go to house. He was very upset and walked fast and not paying attention. I did some circles then dismounted and untacked and brushed and treated. ( he dropped bit very well too)  put him back in pasture :-)

March 29 (27th ride) got him out, took him to arena. Tacked up alone. He stood quietly next to Richard getting tacked up by Stephanie. Got on rode around. Lots of walking/trotting/stoping & standing. Dena went to center of arena and we got him to lope both ways. First right then left then right again ( didn't pick it up well on right first time) picked up wrong lead on right the last try but then we did again and got the right lead a good half circle. Trotted a few more times and got his jog slow again, then we Walked serpentines cooled out. He went right back to quiet. Very laid back tonight.

March 31 (28th ride) - got Kizz , tacked up , got on did some serpentines, was 3 other riders in arena.
Started jogging/walking /whoa
Someone with a baby carriage came towards arena and spooked him. Ran off pretty quick down the arena and I lost my balance to the left.
 Hung on til he was slowing down then swung my right foot out of the stirrup and hopped off before I fell or drug on his reins etc.  He stopped up. Lead him to the step and got back on.

Then jogged full circle working on slowing down.
Then loped left , picked up good, went close to full circle,
Turned. Jogged couple circles. Slowed down then loped few times , kept tossing me forward off balance then I was leaning ahead and couldnt get sitting back, then he crow hopped some. Got half circle. Then picked it up again. Better that time but felt bumpy and off compared to his left lead.
Then switched and did left lead again , picked it up pretty good. Loped another half circle or more , little crow hopping.

Jogged some circles as we turned he usually dropped the jog. Pretty lazy at that point. Then walk/jogged half arena. Seen holly was there so I started cooling him out.
Treated/brushed / returned to pasture.
Good ride~

(11 rides in Feb & 17 in March)

April 1 (29th ride) got him, brushed , tacked up, he stood middle of arena quietly. Got on rail with the 6 other riders.  Walked around. Then jogged in middle and picked up lope, back on rail switched directions with group and repeated. Switched directions few times. Loped good circle each way each time. Picked it up both leads fairly quick. Except once.   No crow hopping. Stayed back in saddle better today.

Cooled out then did braided and bagged his tail. groomed
Played around with ground tying and treats a bit then put back in pasture.

April 3 (30th) - dad, alex & I went over. Got Kizz out pasture, went to arena. Tacked up (tammys saddle) got on (Tina & her friend were in lesson) joined in. Started trotting right off. Worked on slowing it down. They took a few turns loping then my turn. Loped left lead first. Picked up great. Did full circle. Switched directions, 2x I was over turning his head so wouldn't pick it up to right. 3rd time I lifted hands both no turning and he picked it up. Perfect.  Then jogged/loped other side again then quit. Cooled him out then brushed /treated then took back to pasture. Good ride!

April 6th - went to ride. There were new horses there, he wouldn't pay any attention to me at all. Kept screaming and pushing me around. Dena wasn't out there so I decided to leave. (still nervous )

April 7 - 31st ride -
Tacked up , got on, walked around then trotted circles. He Crow hopped a bit, so then I walked/jogged 1/4 arena walls. Then he settled down. We jogged few circles worked on slowing him down. Switched directions. Did same. Settled in great. Was quiet and standing when done. (no loping)

Brought Kizz home!! 

April 30- 32nd ride. (first ride at home)

Tacked up then lead him around the driveway, got bucket, Got on.

Walked around ,he wouldn't pay attention kept turning towards mini's (front pasture) crow hopped And fussed a bit. Got chris to lead me around a bit until he calmed down. Did some circles.
He didn't pay attention well but no more crow hopping.  Did both directions. Stopped dismounted.

Lunged him both directions. Did very very well. Paid attention. (had a little trouble keeping to a walk) walked, jogged and loped. Quietly and without racing around. Did good. Walked again a bit then whoa and walked and whoa.
Quit and treats

May 2- 33 ride (2nd at home)
Lunged , walk ,jog, lope both ways good
Was alone so I mounted outside no help, walked around. Jogged both directions did well. Whoa and backed. Dismounted. Short ride but way better

May 5 - lunged Kizz - walk jog lope both ways did well!
Aadon & I rode coby

May6- (34 ride) rode Kizz (no lunge)
Walk jog both ways whoa and backed bending (was perfect. A little lazy even) picks out his feet (he needs trimmed)

Got Kizz, brushed , tacked up- lunged walk, jog , lope (didn't want to pick up the lope) walked again then mounted off bucket - I dragged on saddle a bit And spooked him and he took off. Got him stopped and got my seat. We walked , turned , bending, then jogged

Wednesday next week-Had a hard time keeping him jogging a full circle and he kept making the circle very tiny wouldn't stay out. Walked some more bending backed. Walked. Jogged both directions again. Walked some more , backed  then dismounted
Treated , let him eat grass then back to pasture.

May 20th -Sunday - tacked up coby for Alex then tacked up Kizz for me- aadon took some pics of the 2 of us on the horses , did some circles up here - then we walked down following coby & alex into the pasture to the bottom. Did some circles and walking along the fence. He was stepping really fast but didn't once take off on me or anything at all. Then we came back up. Rode around trotting in top of driveway. Whoa and backed well. Put him away. 

May 21 -Monday evening - (37th ride) rode Kizz trotted around top of driveway. Walked down the actual driveway and back up a couple times. He was A 1

Sept 3-( ride 39 - very short & sweet)
Lunged Kizz in pasture. Walked jogged ok. Bucked and tried to gallop off at the lope :-( eventually settled down after lots of walking/jogging transitions  then brought up top of driveway and mounted. Rode short ride
- good walk /turning/whoa / backed few times  then dismounted.

At this point we are both getting very bored of walking /trotting in the driveway. :( Too nervous to ride in the wide open pasture with him

I start riding Coby more and more and Kizz less and less.. I even buy Coby some Easy Boots so I can trail ride him more (trail riding , not ring work, is what I really enjoy!)  Coby isn't made for it, and just likes toting the kids around on flat nice ground instead but I'm still too nervous to actually ride Kizz out and do what I enjoy so I just get Coby his boots and decide to ride him (and basically put poor Kizz on the back burner AGAIN ! )

Our new beginning

Just a short month later, a text comes from my friend that she is moving out west and making some big changes in her life and would like to send Kizz home. I am ecstatic!!! I tell my husband and he smiles, he agrees, it's meant to be for Kizz to be in our lives!!!

I know we need a change, something needs to happen.  I decide I need help to get over my fear of getting on him. He has only had  a few short walks under saddle, and I know it's going to take a lot more than that for me to get over my fear of a young excitable green Arabian! I know If I can just get over my fear of his energy we could make a great team!!

 I remember my childhood years of riding fast and furious on the trails on my mor-ab and how fun it was!  I finally have another horse with some attitude and energy!! Even if we just stick to Arenas and rings , we could maybe ride English ? do some jumping? Maybe just maybe if I'm brave enough, we could do eventing or some trail riding some day!? who knows!!

 I contact a lady I know, Dena, that is only about 8 minutes from me with an indoor arena. She quickly agrees to help me! Things are looking up for us!!!

The first of Feb Kizz arrives at the new barn and our new partnership begins!!

Kizz leaves for another province , another home.. a new start for him

The decision made, I post about it on my Facebook page, that I am thinking of selling my boy..  luckily a good friend of mine Robyn in NS contacts me right away and says she wants him! we make a deal for him to leave the very next day. I'm in complete SHOCK! I believe it is fate and tell my husband at supper that night in tears. He says I shouldn't go through with it, Kizz is too important to me. I agree, he IS too important for me to leave sitting in the pasture and do nothing with him. HE and Coby fighting is just not going to work either.

The next day, a trailer comes. He loads up great and off he goes. After a few more days of tears and pain, I decide I can not be upset over this.. It was my decision, it was best for him and it's done.

 My friend keeps me well updated on how he's doing and how much she adores him.

 It 's painful to see, but also great when she shares some pictures of her sitting on him!! It is bittersweet to see him learning some new things as well as heartbreaking that someone else was sitting on my horse for his first time. :(

                                              Kizz's first ride with my good friend Robyn- Jan 2012

getting back in the saddle but on the wrong horse!

Over the next couple of years Kizz and I spend a little more time together, but I just don't seem to find the time to do any work with him. If I want to hop on for a quick ride I of course choose my quiet well trained gelding Coby. He could go years with no one riding him and then saddle up and give a kid a riding lesson. He's very laid back and perfect for a quick bareback ride in the pasture when I have a few few minutes. My husbands new job keeps him away most of the day light hours during summer.

  I do tack Kizz up a few times and lunge him. It goes very well but I just can't get the nerve up to GET on him!

Winter time we stay indoors a lot eating deep fried foods and playing cards. I read a lot of romance novels and loose myself in them trying to be happy. My weight climbs ever high and my life gets put on hold it seems.

Summer 0f 2011 comes and a friend of mine asks to board her new mare here for a while and my daughter is getting bigger things start to look up!! My husband Chris is very willing to watch her while I go out a couple times a weekend on some trail rides. Cobys slow slow gate and calm attitude suits my friend riding her green young mare.  It's fun and great to get out in the sun and fresh air and enjoy some rides! Coby who has always had sensitive soles and only works well on sandy arena footing, needs shoes. We have our farrier shoe him and off we go for the summer. Kizz seems very upset when we come back from our ride.. he comes to the gate and it's easy to tell he wants HIS turn! It just doesn't happen, the little time I have I want to ride Coby whom I feel safe and confident on.

Kizz sadly watching us riding away 

Soon enough we realize it's way past time to get Kizz gelded! We would like to be able to pasture all 3 together.

Kizz finally gets gelded at age of 5 ! but then things go down hill from there for my two boys, when all 3 horses get pastured together, Kizz starts to pick on Coby, he is very interested in keeping this mare to himself and starts to bite Coby very badly :(

My friend takes her mare to a spot close to her home but not far from here and I offer to let her take Coby as a buddy. We continue trail riding from there and have quite a few good rides. Kizz is home alone other than the miniatures in another pasture, but he handles it ok.

When my friend sells her mare, and I ride Coby home, Kizz seems happy to see his buddy, but things don't go well. they fight badly, poor Coby gets the brunt of the bad bites. I give it some time and hope they will work through it. Coby has always been the Boss, but now it seems Kizz wants to be boss and Coby isn't stepping down without a fight!

I'm at this point way too nervous to actually get on him and another year slips by without much work to Kizz.

Winter comes that year and Kizz and Coby are still not getting along. Many days I have to go out and blanket Coby as he's kicked out of the shelter in the sleet or cold with Kizz in the shelter alone. Cobys feet are also very very sensitive worse than before having had shoes on a full summer rather than just a few weeks like every before. He can't get away from Kizz as fast as he'd like!

It isn't looking good for us to keep the two of them. We can't separate them as we already have the kids 3 miniatures in our other barn and paddock.

I start to think it's time to let him go. I'm holding onto Kizz -my dream horse, but not putting the work into him he needs. I make the decision to find him a new home where my smart boy will actually have a job.

The back burner

Our daughter is born Jan 2 2009, That entire winter I don't spend much time with the horses.. That spring I realize I am not going to have the time I would like to start two now 3 year old horses. 

Kizz has still not been gelded , and is getting quite spirited. We know we need to get him gelded but keep putting it off!

We decide it's now or never , the two youngsters are 3, we had better start getting some work done on them or rehome them. I can't bring myself to let kizz go, so we decide we will start Chris' mare and sell her. My husband although supports me in my horse endeavors isn't interested in riding. So it's not a hard decision.

 It doesn't take long to get her green broke to saddle. She walks and trots nicely for me. I am nervous starting her, she is sooo big and tall! way taller than any other horse I've owned! All have been under 15 hh, Katra is at least 15'2 and still growing! She's very sweet and quiet and all goes very nicely! She is purchased quite soon after posting her for sale and heads to her new home in NS.

My husband takes a new job, and is gone a lot more than he used to be, I have no one to watch our young daughter for me to work with horses. I in turn fall into a bit of a depression. I gain more weight than I ever have before. At 5'1 hitting 180 lbs I don't even feel I have the energy to move around to work at loosing any. I try to be happy and concetrate on keeping good care of my kids, I bake and play games and work on being  a mommy. My beautiful Kizz and Coby go on the back burner .... 

Getting used to each other

 Kizz grows nicely and we become the best of friends, he is unlike any other horse I've ever owed.. I feel he really is attached to ME , and knows who his owner is..  All my other horses, even my first horse whom I had a wonderful bond with didn't seem to differentiate between myself and whoever else was feeding them. Kizz seemed to care who was handling him!

I also have to work to get used to the quick way he moves and how fast he reacts!  I am so used to my quiet easy going paints!! Around the time he becomes 2 I become pregnant. My new husband and I are thrilled to be having a child together. ( I have 2 wonderful boys from previous marriages)  It does put a bit of a stall on any training I had planned , I got very sick and didn't care to do anything with the horses other than pets and cuddles..

Kizz gets his first bath the summer he turns two, and learns to lead better (he always tends to jump on the person leading him if something spooks him) and will NOT walk through a puddle EVER.

We are renting at this time, and decide to buy a piece of property from Chris' grandfather that isn't very far from where we are then and move.. We buy an old mobile home and start building on it and fixing it up. We move the horses in early Dec 2008  I'm very happy with how Kizz hops on the trailer and handles it like a pro! The paints load up great as well and we're on our way!

It is much more windy here on Maple Ridge and cold, the horses shiver even in the barn! we decide we need to blanket all 3 horses.

So his 2 year old year comes and goes quickly with little work to the poor guy.. but he's enjoying playing and running with his friends and just being a horse, I have LOTS of time to get him started, right??

Kizz & his buddy Coby playing in the snow on a warm day on Maple Ridge

buddies Kizz & Coby 

Kizz gives kisses

After a good month of groceries and a farrier coming to trim our little guy he gets his name.  This little red horse loves to touch noses.. so so cute.. he gets his name Kizz . His registered name is Pizzazzfsi So figure adding some Z's is the ticket :)

Kizz puts on quite a bit of weight after just 30 days of good food and a blanket . It's cold out now and the blanket really helps to save his energy for building muscle and fat. He love his food and digs in with gusto ! The only thing we notice is he is very very scared of the big water tank we have the horses drink from. So he is watered out of a smaller bucket for now.

Kizz gets used to grooming, halters, leading , picking up his feet and getting better balance. As his feet come down from being blocky and looking club footed, (which a friend of my figures he isn't at all club footed, he just stomped off his toe in all the dry dry weather there was in Ont that year , and with no farrier work he has become very blocky and looks club footed) I take her advice and just keep his heels as low as we can. He comes along very nicely and within 6 months all but his front right are perfect angles! The right front is close but wont come down, so we figure it's best to leave it where it is.

kizz is growing into a lovely boy and is making us all proud with his progress, he still trips and even trips so bad he falls sometimes! but we think he may be a tiny bit over at the knee, and just needs some good food and time to run around in a big pasture!

He is a sweet good natured boy even though he is nervous of many things! He makes us so happy!

kizz with his 2 pasture buddies 

kizz growing up! 

the beginning of our journey

our story begins when one day online I see a lady selling two beautiful registered arabian colts.. one a coal black weanling and one a leggy thin chestnut with plenty of Chrome yearling. I have ALWAYS wanted another Arabian (my first horse was a more-ab and the go go go attitude was perfect for great trail riding fun! My gelding I have now is bred for Western pleasure and while he is worth his weight in gold to tote around kids safely and jog or lope around a ring, he just wasn't trail material.  ) So being a PAINT lover and Arabian lover, this guy was my DREAM horse!! not only is an Arabian, but he's a sabino to boot!!

 I contact the lady asking what her price is on the yearling. She replys that Fonzi is $2500 , There was no way I could afford Fonzi as well as his trailering from Ontario to my home in NB. I am sad but know it just wasn't meant to be for me and Fonzi.

A few weeks later, another post arrives on my friends page, saying the yearling is the only one left and needs to GO, she will give him away if someone get him ASAP. I then message her and ask for her number!! I call her and after a nice long chat she and I make a plan for Fonzi to come live with me!! I'm so excited I can't begin to explain!

The trailer arrives a week later we are estatic hooking up our trailer to go meet them at the highway.. we are waiting when it pulls in and a man gets out and says "he trailered well!"

He opens up the trailer and my first look of my colt is sad to say the least..he's in horrible shape, thin with a horrible unhealthy coat and 4 very clubbed feet!!! he trips coming down the trailer ramp a few times.. We load him and take him home..

once home we unload and blanket the poor sorry looking colt. We offer him water and hay..he doesn't seem interested in anything but meeting his new barn friends..my paint gelding Coby & my husbands yearling Paint filly Katra
kizz his first day home with us

 so after he's introduced over the fence to our two paints , I'm left alone with hiim in his stall ..watching for him to eat some.. I feel his ribs under his blanket and rub him all over . It's easy to see he wasn't touched much he's very nervous of it.  I get to his chest and scratch and after a bit he sees he likes it. he settles his head in my hands and I am so shocked at the beauty of it!! it's so dished and Arabian like!

 I leave him in the barn and head to the house. I feel like emailing or calling the lady I got him from asking why he is in such poor shape, but I do not. He is mine now and will never be hungry or neglected again.  It is a few months before the previous owner and I discuss why he is so skinny and scared.

but for now I still have hopes he and I will be best of friends and maybe some day trail partners!