Today was SO nice out! Wow! Sun, warm air, no wind, just perfect! Got the chance to play with Aspen today and spend a little undemanding time with Scooter, a 2yr old LBE colt. He's a little skeptical of things now and again but very curious, wanted to follow me around and investigate everything! Brushed him for what seemed like forever trying to get all that winter fur off of him. I just let him hang out in the arena and paddock so he could hang around while I spent time with Aspen and get a look at all my toys and tricks. :)
Aspen was really good today. Did a quick 2min evaluation of the 7 games with her - everything is coming along really nicely with the exception of our sideways. Part of it is lack of time spent on this game and her just being green at it and a huge part of it I found out today is the amount of FOCUS I put into it. If I get very focused on a marker over her back that she shouldn't walk forward or lag behind from the sideways is A LOT straighter. Began playing with some transitions between trot and canter on-line today, it was going pretty well until the tarp in the corner of the arena rustled in the breeze (she'd just been standing on this a few minutes prior) and she bolted like a bat out of hell. You could see every ounce of race horse and Thoroughbred in her all at once in an extreme Right Brain Extrovert moment - WOW! Glad I wasn't on for that one! So we quit with the transitions and played approach and retreat with the now still tarp. Pretty soon it was on her, under her, dragging behind her and she didn't care. It's not that she's afraid of the tarp she just startles super easy... Maybe I'll need a friend to help with some surprise desensitization - not to scare the crap out of her, but just something from a safe distance that she wasn't expecting and then use that as a controlled scenario to build her confidence.
Something else I noticed with her today was that although it doesn't take much to get her adrenaline up (ie: cantering) she was a lot quicker to blow and shake her head in effort to come down from it.
Also, really cool - took her over to the empty tire today and she just got this look on her face like "oh yes, I know what to do with that! Put my foot in/on it!" I really loved the effort she put into that and all the licking and chewing here.
I got on for a couple minutes of follow the rail and change of direction. Only really getting negative response when I dismount... She was good for all the rest of it. She was compliant but I could tell she hasn't really gotten the pattern of FTR yet.
Still looking for some tack - scroll down to see my Wanted post if you've got some stuff you'd like to sell.