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Christmas Vacation

I am SO happy to be able to say that the next six days are all my own. Yay for Christmas vacation!! I'm doing Christmas shopping tomorrow and then the next two days I get to do whatever I want which of course means riding. Then Tuesday and Christmas Eve I'll spend with my family.

Things have been weird recently. I've decided to end the relationship I'm in and it's been a tough decision. For better or worse I've been thinking about this person constantly and wanting to be with him for the past year and a half so it's really weird to be leaving him. So far I strangely haven't been at all emotional but I have felt completely emotionally exhausted. Part of that is probably because it is our busiest time at work and we are understaffed anyway. I've been putting in extremely long days and working my butt off the entire time I'm there pretty much never leaving my desk. At any rate I feel like I've been lost in a fog whenever I'm not at work and the extent of my motivation is to get home and collapse on the couch to watch Netflix which is unusual for me.

That has meant that my week was pretty devoid of riding as I skipped the barn Sunday through Wednesday. I did make it out there yesterday and today and I already started feeling a little bit better the moment I stepped into the barn and smelled that incredible horse smell.

Yesterday it was rough to get anything done because there was a group lesson with three people. I swear this instructor tries to have her riders interfere with me but maybe it's just that I was spoiled at the dressage barn with everyone riding in 20 meter circles. There it was like a dance and I carefully kept out of people's way. Here I do my best to stay at the opposite end of the arena but the second I start working she directs one of the riders over to where I'm riding and tells them to canter or something. Just seems a little odd and I spend my whole ride trying to avoid getting creamed by their thoroughbreds. Add to that the fact that one girl clucked through pretty much the entire lesson which made Katai think canter and it was a bit of a rough ride.

Tonight I got the arena to myself and it was awesome! Don't get me wrong, I'd much rather ride with other people and at the previous barn I actually was happy when I saw someone in the arena but here that's not the case. Oh well, at some point it will warm up outside and then there will be something like five arenas to choose from as well as trails and a track. With the arena to myself I started out at the walk and worked more on leg yielding as well as shoulder in. She is getting SO good at it and was even maintaining her rhythm and balance better. After that we worked on trotting and then did a canter in each direction and called it a night. 

           Unfortunately this is a throughobred breeding barn in KY and not where I board.

I can say that both myself and Katai seem to be complete stall board converts. I have never had her more calm, relaxed or happy. Her entire attitude has changed and she is just so relaxed and quiet and happy when I get to the barn as well as happy to go back into her stall after a ride. She's had shavings on her belly more than once so I'm sure she's been laying down and she seems to be keeping the stall extremely neat and pooping only in one small corner. Her hooves continue to look better and stay nice and dry and clean. 

She has been so quiet and calm that I'm actually struggling, for the first time, to keep her in front of my leg. She does go forward when I ask but it can be inconsistent and sometimes when I ask she just keeps slogging along at whatever speed she's currently at. Right now I'm just glad that she's not so tense and panicky that everything I do makes her race away. I'm ok with this problem for the time being as she is seriously doing SO much better than she was two months ago. 

I CAN'T wait to do a show or two this summer :)


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