About Me

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North Lawrence, New York, United States
I can be described as lover of life, an animal lover, and lover of education. I am constantly striving for knowledge and learning opportunities. I've been around horses my entire life. I enjoy working with horses and their human partners through natural horsemanship philosophies, natural balance bare foot hoof care, reiki, red-light therapy, essential oils, aromatherapy, crystal healing, chromotherapy, flower essences, and more. I am a Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki Master Teacher who offers treatments for people, horses, dogs, cats, and other creatures great and small. I also teach Reiki classes for those interested in learning how to treat themselves, their loved ones, and even their animals! Natural Horse Lover Farm is located in Northern New York between the St. Lawrence River and Adirondack Mountains. Heaven on Earth. naturalhorseloverfarm.com

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Another Successful Meeting = Motivation

The NCPPG is going very well. We watched a video and discussed it this evening. I believe that we have a very good start and that people are genuingly interested in looking at horsemanship in a new light. We also have recognized that we (as women) have been using some of these techniques over the years without knowing it. How interesting.

The groups's momentum is strong and very motivating for me. I have been sturying the Behavior and Liberty Series everynight. It has been filling in the blanks for me, helping with my motivation, and overall, helping me communicate and partner with my horses. PNH is a real life-changer.

Monday, February 25, 2008

First Play Date with North Country Parelli Play Group - Awesome!

To start, I just want to take a moment to thank you my new play group for a wonderful play date this evening. So, this part of the post is directed towards them...

I had so much fun playing with my horses and getting to know you all better. I miss playing with my horses and with horsey friends. This time together helped revive my motivation and made me feel whole again.

Boy do we need play time back in our lives! It is interesting to see how they have coped with strange surroundings and different living arrangements, how they are dealing with my absence, and how we, together still have a language to communicate to each other no matter the circumstance. I found myself reflecting and talking about horsenalities (the Parelli Horsenality Chart is above--check out their website for more information) and really discovering new ways to think and talk about the issues of the evening.

You have all, since my arrival (and actually before) have been so kind, warm, and welcoming. You are very special people and I am honored to know you and be able to enjoy your company. Thank you for caring for my horses' needs in a variety of ways. I do appreciate everything you all have done for us.

I truly am looking forward to future play dates and other club meetings! I would love to have you all over for a video meeting sometime soon. Don't forget to let me know when is good for you so that I can schedule something---maybe next week/weekend?

To complete the post, I want to talk about my reactions, experiences, and other related issues to the actual activities with my horses and my new friends.

The attendees were the three ladies in the group (our official group is 4 people including me) a husband of one of the members, and another horse person from the area. When I got there, the two non-members were finishing up some riding and stuck around to watch us. One member of the group and I played with our horses while the others observed, asked questions, etc.

I was not nervous being in front of this new group (never am you know) but my 22 foot was attaching itself to my Velcro on my breeches! LOL It was hilarious and kind of annoying. I played with Whiskey first (remember I have not done much with my horse in months, they are lucky to see me for a few minutes and get a grooming or hoof trim--it has been a difficult transition for all of us but has gone rather smoothly). He did things well but not to the caliber I know he can and he did have a few emotional outbursts, I withdrew my requests at times to give him space and did not pass his thresholds. I was careful to listen to what he was telling me and did not compromise my principles or his dignity in order to reach a goal. It was not a surprise that he was a bit detached really. However, it was a successful session--but a little disappointing on the "wow" factor I think--although others loved watching him--he is gorgeous. The new club is full of very nice, people. One person offered to get Fosse out for me and we swapped horses. All I could think was, how nice, how kind. The other member who had been playing with her horse in the arena at the same time Whiskey was there wanted to put her horse away about the time Fosse came out. (I unfortunately was unable to really watch her at the play date and next time, may offer to help her and be an observer.)

So, anyhow, back to Fosse, I played at liberty with him at first,which really kept me moving as we were in an arena (maybe like a 100x80) and he was really pushing me, then we played on the 22 foot, changing directions, playing with obstacles, etc, and then back to liberty play with a jump, stick to me, etc. I changed things up to keep it intereesting and was careful to read my horse and listen to him as he was listening to me. Fosse was very connected and we were having a great time. I then decided to saddle him with my bareback pad and sit on him which turned into a mini-riding session, working on pushing passenger at the walk and flexion. He did GREAT---OUTSTANDING---MAJOR WOW FACTOR overall!!!!! Now, mind you, I have seen him like this before but considering we have done virtually nothing, and how he instantly reconnected with me, I was thrilled.

I would have to ascertain that Whiskey is acting very unconfident, right-brained, and introverted (even would go as far as he is shutting down at times and going inside himself) and can report that he was having a total cow (a mental meltdown) in his stall while I was in the arena with Fosse and the group. He was acting herdbound for sure. This horse needs some major "mommy" time. LOL

Oh, and there is some woman in the area that wants me to do a small clinic or play date at her barn. How interesting! And, others that are intrigued in the play group. I am interested in hearing more and getting to know more people--although I love the idea of a small-knit group. Anyhow, everyone this evening was impressed, had fun, and wants to do it again (at least that is what I believe I heard).

They liked the idea of my bareback riding and were interested in learning more about balance point (I was asked how I stayed on the horse and it was noted that I had no stirrups--LOL.) I sent more links and files to the group site (below here for you) to continue to build a robust resource. I also talked about all of the games, one-rein stops, etc. etc. etc. It was like a demo/mini L1 clinic! LOL I had a blast. I offered to help people with ideas of balance point and riding too. (The photo to the right is Linda Parelli riding Remmer bareback.)

My thoughts about balance and bareback. To me, the point of riding bareback is to develop a good seat and naturally find my balance point. Afterall, without using a saddle with stirrups, if I am not balanced, I am off the horse, that is the plain fact of it. I can tell you that I have done walk, trot, canter, jumping, and trail riding (in the mountains) bareback. And, I have not fallen off. I may not have a good figure but, I do have excellent balance! LOL The more you ride bareback, the better your seat will be, I guarantee it! The Parelli bareback pad is a great tool for this type of riding (although you can do these things without using a bareback pad--and I do).

Here are some excellent resources about balance point and bareback issues:

Balance point with Linda Podcast from Savvy Club Website

There are some good tips about bareback riding in the My Journey section of the Savvy Club Website, Looking at Level 1.

I would also recommend the Success Series DVDs and Linda's old Riding with Fluidity video (not the best but has good info).

Riding With Fluidity by Linda Parelli, 07/03/2005 ARTICLE:

Please note that at no time do I claim to be a Parelli Professional. I do not accept any money, and am only looking at these and new opportunities as times to learn and share with others and to have fun. Whether they call it a "clinic", "play date", etc., it is all about quality play time with horses and like-minded horse people, it is a learning experience for me. I just wanted to clarify that point. Now, I love showing/teaching others what I have learned or experienced but I make no claims to have Parelli-Pro status. I have a long way to go on this journey and am looking forward to every minute, every day, every hour. I would love to be a Parelli Professional some day but that day is not here yet and may never happen because I also have a full-time career. Nonetheless, the play group idea really works.

Anyhow...until next time.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

North Country Parelli Play Group

Well, as you know, I love getting like-minded horse people together. So, I have started a new group in my new home area. I am calling it the North Country Parelli Play Group. This is a newly formed group looking for members. Please read below for more information.

The North Country Parelli Play Group (NCPPG) is based in North Lawrence, New York, in St. Lawrence County, at "Hidden Meadows Natural Horsemanship." Its intended audience is those interested in Parelli Natural Horsemanship (PNH) who are living in the North Country Region of the State of New York and bordering localities in Canada. *If you are not in this region, we are not an appropriate venue for you due to our interactive, hands-on nature.*

The NCPPG's focus is the in-depth study and assessment of PNH. It is the intent of this group to not only be a virtual entity, but one that gets together, in-person for play dates, educational discussions, seminars, tour stops, and more!


Thursday, February 14, 2008

Our New Home

I just wanted to let you know that we closed on the new NY house yesterday! The new place is a log cabin in the woods (with a loft), Quonset style large building, and 40 acres -- we plan to build a horse barn and facilities in the Spring and bring our horses home--they are being boarded right now nearby.

We spent the night in the cabin last night and are just happier than I can even begin to tell you! The dogs had a blast running around and checking things out, our cat seems a bit upset and was crying and running around last night, and our parrot is totally fine with the transition.

The driveway is 2 tenths of a mile through the woods--it is so awesome! I cannot wait to get working on the plans we have for the house and the property, and the barn, etc.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Some of My Favorite Quotes

"It's funny how people don't have time to do it right but, they have the time to do it wrong over and over again." ~Pat Parelli

“Pressure motivated horses but it is the release that teaches.” ~Pat Parelli

"If your horse says "no", you either asked the wrong question, or asked the question wrong." ~Pat Parelli

"A horse doesn't care how much you know until he knows how much you care." ~Pat Parelli

"Horses don't need to be 'trained,' they need good leadership and clear communication. As the leader in your herd of two it's your job to keep your horse safe and without worry, to prepare him well for what you plan to do." ~Linda Parelli