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Sunday, 1 April 2018

March Round Up

So it was all change in March! WE MOVED YARDS!

The yard that I have been stabled at for the last four years was great - excellent facilities with an indoor & outdoor arena, reasonable all year turn out, and some long hacking available. But, as with any yard, it had some downside that I decided were becoming too much - mostly that there were no consistent livery services. With a fairly sizeable promotion in October, I'd decided that I wanted a little more help to stop going twice a day and to be able to rely on livery when I'm away with work or had a busy week or two.

A friend had recently moved to a yard that was based on a farm, run by the farmer and his wife & offered livery services 7 days a week in a menu style approach. It would be flexible enough to enable me to add extras each week based on what I had going on with work. The yard has a 20x40 outdoor school, is based literally on the beach, has a cross country course on site, and a HUGE herd turnout, split into geldings and mares. The main thing was being able to have that support and stop me needing to get up at 5.30am and not returning home until 9pm...

We were due to move on 2nd March, but with a severe delay to my travel from working in Copenhagen and the extraordinary snowfall the north east saw at the start of March, we didn't move until the follow week - 9th March.

I was slightly apprehensive about moving Louie & about how well he would settle. As a younger horse, he wasn't an easy horse to manage in the stable - throwing himself against the walls in frustration of being in a stable & banging the door relentlessly when others fed. I was super pleased that Louie settled right in and was happy & content from the start. Andrew had kitted his stable floor out completely with super luxurious stable mats from Horse Mats Plus, so mucking out was quick & easy, and Louie was able to enjoy a comfortable bed each day.

Unfortunately due to the snow and persistent heavy rain, the fields were closed. But for Louie, this was better - he had no idea that there was field of lovely green grass just over the road! However, it gave me the chance to settle Louie into a good & consistent routine, but just meant a bit more attention to his activity and exercise to make sure he wasn't just stood in the stable 24/7.

We got straight to carrying on with our training from day two at the new yard, checking out our new arena. Louie loved it - there was so much to see!! People coming and going from the beach, dogs in the sand dunes, cars on the road running past, horses going out on hacks, coming back from hacks... His attention was everywhere but on the task in hand! He soon settled and after a few days was totally relaxed with just the occasional 'Have you seen that other there!?' moment!

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Dressage Training

We didn't plan to do much in March because of the move and getting settled into our new surroundings, but we headed out to enjoy a flatwork session with Cathy. Louie seemed a little confused as to why he was stepping back on the horsebox when he had finished as the lesson was held at my previous yard and it was just three days after moving! It was a super session - Louie was a totally relaxed and seemed switched on!

We headed back again to the comfort of our old indoor school just a week later. Fed up of strong winds all week coming off the North Sea and straight across the arena, and Louie needing a good work out, I boxed him up and headed back.

Exploring our new surroundings

After a couple of weeks we ventured out on our first hack with our friend who had moved before us, Vicki, & her horse Musty.

It was a beautiful sunny day, and it finally felt like spring!!

Easter weekend fell into March, and we took the opportunity to enjoy some lovely hacking with a few extra days off work!

Next month, we're planning on heading out & about a bit more again, and already have a couple of showjumping sessions planned, as well as some entries into British Dressage classes and a flatwork training session with Cathy, heading back to our old yard.

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