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

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

My brain is going into overload...

So, I now have Lola, a wonderful 3-year old, Quarter Horse, mare, my new levels partner.  My brain is on overload thinking about Parelli assessments and my need to move on.  I am very eager to get to level three as soon as I can as I need to make progress, now, period. I need to pass my level 2 freestyle riding tasks (which I know I can do). I have not really ridden Lola yet but am confident she and I can get there together, we can do it, right? LOL  Discussions with her previous owner suggest Lola will be a willing partner as long as I take the time it takes to play with her on the ground first and as she's said, "get the buck out" first, then ride. By the way, Lola was started at Craig Johnson's barn over the summer and was well-liked. Anyhow, I always play with my horses before riding so this works well with my routine. I believe this is pretty normal for a youngster   to need, in particular, and the terminology is simply referring to letting her get her ya-ya's out, getting our communication connection in-tact, and then moving forward to the next challenge,our riding tasks (freestyle). However, what I also know is that I have to actually take the time it takes and get to work on it otherwise it will not happen. When I was in Virginia, I played with and rode all of my horses, daily (each at their respective levels). Just talking about it means nothing, action is required. I have to stop thinking about it, stop making excuses, stop making assumptions about what might happen, and just do it!  Truly, this should be something that I should have completed long ago but, circumstances just prohibited it I guess: an inappropriate horse (one was too old (Wilber), another not physically capable (Fosse), and another an emotionally unstable basket case--as in unreliable (Whiskey)), not enough time (did I not take it or did I not have it--hmmm) , moving to another state was a barrier, setting up a new house, new job, new facilities not built yet, etc., etc. etc., and the list goes on. DAMN, ARGH, MERDE! I am sick and tired of excuses, detours, and "issues." I just want this to happen and be done, I MUST MOVE FORWARD AND HAVE TO TAKE ACTION NOW.

Okay, so how do I accomplish this? I need to have a plan! I can easily preach to others about what steps they need to take to make progress and find success, it is time I take a bit of my own advice. Okay, I have to breathe, think, and be realistic. What do I need to do to get moving and find success? Here are some ideas - I am sure I've missed something, many things (please share some of your ideas with me if you have others). I need support please...remember I now live in Northern New York and am in the lonely barn club. Rick supports me 100% but, I do need some fellow PNH support too, if you don't mind!

Tentative Plan:

Tasks to do this weekend:
  1. Review current level 2 materials
  2. Review previous iterations of other related Parelli materials
  3. Review self-assessment criteria
  4. Play with Lola and make sure we are okay on all level 2 tasks that precede freestyle riding
Tasks to do next weekend:
  1. Review official auditions details 
  2. Start riding Lola practicing freestyle riding using video to assess progress (this will require travel 50 miles away to my friend's indoor arena because of the current footing at my place)
Task for the rest of April and May:
  1. Practice level two  freeestyle riding
Task for June:
  1. Send in a video assessment no later than June 30th to Parelli (no excuses for not liking to be on video) *send in sooner if ready
Tasks for July:
  1. After receiving a pass on level 2 freestyle and official word of being level 3, start studying level 3
  2. Send in horsenality report information for a report on Lola to be prepared by Parelli
Task for fall:
  1. Attend a level 3 clinic should there be an opportunity within 5 hours of my place
Okay, so that is it, wish me luck!

Image from: http://blog.teenmentalhealth.org/wp-content/uploads/2008/11/brain.jpg


Naturally Gaited said...

Ok, here is my suggestion: play with her on the ground until she isn't oinky, then ask her to come to get you and when she does, mount partially then ask for permission. Once aboard, follow the rail at a walk in a small area until you are both really relaxed. Then call it a day!

By the way, that is also my plan for Guinness each day this weekend! :-)


Michelle AKA arabhorselover1 said...

I like this idea. I can probably do this at home, even with the mushy ground as long as we stay at the walk.She has been awesome on the ground to date and well beyone level 2. PLEASE keep pushing me to not be so overly cautious--as we've discussed I think this cautiousness is due to having Whiskey be so manic. :)

Tina said...

Just a note...Nita Jo Rush (4-star) is doing a L3/4 in Clinton Corners, NY in Sept. She's super!!

Love your goals...think I need to do this too!

Michelle AKA arabhorselover1 said...

Thanks, Tina, I will keep that in mind. I have friends and family down that way. I'll have to go get the dates for that clinic and see what happens!


Lisa said...

I think for many of us the phrase should be "take the time it takes but don't take too much time." Cautious is good - it keeps us safe, it stops us from over-facing the horse, etc. But if we just keep taking time, it takes more time.

My suggestion - harnass the power of the Question Box. Best pattern every created, in my not-so-humble opinion. It's great for RB horses because asking for change only in the box gives them time to mentally prepare. It's great for LB horses because you can add variety and they can feel clever. It's even better for humans with any kind of baggage - it offers control which builds confidence, it feels safe because you can always just head for the box and stop. You can make the pattern as big or small as your environment and horse dictate.

I've developed more confidence in my riding and in my horse using this pattern than anything we've done EVER in the 8 years I've studied Parelli.

Don't forget to have fun. Each session with your horse should cause you to fall in love with her all over again. Goals are great - they keep us moving forward, they are our dreams with deadlines attached. But don't get so wrapped up in what you haven't done that you loose the wonder and awe of each moment with your horse.

~ Lisa

Michelle AKA arabhorselover1 said...

Thanks, Lisa, for your thoughtful response. I really appreciate it.

I am going to review the question box pattern and definitely incorporate it!


inchwormwv said...

Hey Michelle, I know you can pass L2. I remember seeing you ride Wilbur, and you have a great seat and a lot of savvy.

Stephanie Burns pointed out that learning happens outside the comfort zone, but not if you are too far out. When I get into straight line thinking mode, I can push myself way out, get scared, and then procrastinate because my goal seems so huge. So if you are ever anything like me - set it up to happen in teeny tiny bites that build confidence. Good Luck although I know you do not need it :-)

Michelle AKA arabhorselover1 said...

Thank you so much Tenley, I really appreciate and needed your comments. Guess what? I rode Lola tonight. However, it is a long story and I will be blogging about it so I won't get into detail here. Suffice it to say I was really nervous (which is foreign to me), I did ride, she and I did ok, we both lived, and I am looking forward to progressing. I didn't walk back in the house excited but, glad I did it. Anyhow, look for my post and thanks again, you are a wonderful friend whom I miss very much.