Well, we've made it to the 1 year mark. I have officially owned Lola and Gem 1 year today :-D and what a year it's been!
So much has happened over the past month or so, we've had to move yards meaning Lola has been turned away for the time being and Gem's re-backing has ground to a halt. After lots of problems and far too many injuries at the old yard we've moved back to my friends yard for now. It's a lovely, quaint little place with lovely old stables and lots of grazing but unfortunatley is right on a main duel carriageway and has no hacking bar the road. There's also no-where flat to school so the girls are having a holiday over the winter until something else comes up. No big deal really, Lola was schooling so well beforehand that she probably deserves a break before the real work begins in spring and after 12 months i figure another couple won't hurt Gem! They are both living out 24/7 now too which i've wanted for months, and are loving it!
Before the move Lola was doing so well. We had been hacking out 2/3 times per week, once in company and twice on our own and schooling another 2/3 times. She's been a real star out hacking on her own, not bothered by anything at all. She's cracked the leg yield in walk and trot now and is taking a much steadier contact on the bit. She still has her 'neck out like a giraffe' moments but with lots of transitions she's really learning to carry herself properly and work in an outline. I really do love my pony! (although i must stop calling her that as she's touching 15.3hh now!) I was hoping to start some jumping with her before we went but it wasn't to be and that shall have to wait a while.
There have been times over the last 12 months when i've thought we were getting nowhere fast and that nothing was coming together, but when i think back to this time last year when i brought her i realise how far we've come. I brought a scrawny, scruffy 3 year old, barely touching 14.1hh who'd hardly been handled, never worn a rug or had her feet picked up or loaded and 12 months on i have a 15.2/3hh almost 5 year old horse who's had her 1st shoes on, been backed, hacks out alone, started schooling and loads & travels like an old pro.
This time last year my confidence was pretty low and i never thought i'd hack out again, let alone on my own on an untested 4 year old! What posessed me to buy a unhandled 3 year old i'll never know, it's been years since i last backed & schooled a youngster and so much had happened since then but she was too special to resist. I cant remember who wrote this, but one of my favourite quotes is "When the student is ready, the teacher will appear". I really believe this is the case here, she turned up out of the blue on my friends yard when i was selling my old boy and the rest is history...