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In Loving Memory...
~ Gogo Fatale ~

6/2/01 - 10/11/11
~ Forever the Marest of Them All ~

Friday, June 5, 2009

End of May Analysis, and Happy Belated 8th Birthday, Gogo!

I've been away this week in OH visiting my fiancee week. I left Monday night, and came back VERY late last night (went to bed at 2am, was up by 4am to go clean stalls, bleugh!), so I'm understandably tired! Gogo had Sunday off, and got a nice groom and some handwalking to go along with her loooooong turnout, and on Monday, she hacked lightly around the neighborhood, up all the big hills at a trot.

And very tragically, I missed her 8th birthday on Tuesday, because strangely enough, June 2nd is not only her birthday, but my kitten's birthday (well, she's an adult now I guess!) AND my fiancee's birthday too! Before I left on Monday, I carved up an apple into the shape of an 8 and left it in her morning grain, and tonight, I made her a special birthday cake:

Mmmm! She, of course, thought it was delicious:

And she was nice enough to share a bit with everyone when she was done :)
Happy 8th Birthday sweetie pea!! Here's to many, many more birthday celebrations, cakes, and years together! :D


And now, June begins!!

May Goals:

1) Attend our first two recognized events of the year, and obtain two qualifying scores for the AECs and for Area I Championships
Success!!!! And this deserves many exclamation marks!! Not only did we get our qualifying scores, and are now entered in the Area Championships (and just need one more completion to go to the AECs), but we WON both of Gogo first Novice runs, on our very respectable dressage scores. Awesome!!!

2) Continue to develop our gallops, and my gallop position
Success... mostly! Our schedule wasn't quite on the week-for-week that it was the month before, but during show weeks, I tend to back off on the gallops in order to save her for the galloping she'll need to do during the weekend. We have defintely developed our fitness further, and I definitely think my position has improved thanks to working with Kerry. I shortened my stirrups one hole already, and I'm going to shorten them again when we jump on Monday. We'll likely end up galloping tomorrow or Sunday, depending on how the footing is after all the rain we've had today.

3) Continue to develop better stretch, and trot-canter transitions
Success, slowly! We're still steadily improving this, the same as we have been these past few months. It comes along very slowly, but it's certainly not something we're going to perfect in a month. Progress, steady progress!

4) Start to work a little more collection into our schooling dressage work
Sucess! Again, this is not an end-all goal. We're starting to work more in shoulder-in and counter-canter work, and starting to gather her gaits beneath her a little more. She's given me exceedingly promising moments, and we'll continue to work on introducing new concepts. I've been playing with some baby walk pirouettes (very rudimentary ones), reinback, and more advanced counter canter work, but we have to be in the right level of relaxation and the right frame of mind in order to try new things. It's quite remarkable though, because things like reinback used to cause her to panic, fling her head in the air, and rear uncontrollably. I think now that she understands that she has an outlet when I ask for it - backwards motion - she's not so totally freaked out by it. I imagine when Jeane had her, a good yank backwards on the reins was all it took to flip her over. Ugh.

5) Have a little FUN out there ;)
SUCCESS! We are having a blast :D That weekend vacation we took with Salute and Anne and Kerry and Jen? Awesome. Just awesome. None of it is worth it unless you're having fun doing it.

June Goals:

1) Complete our AEC qualification requirements (one more event, obtaining a completion with no XC jump penalties)
2) Start to introduce new dressage concepts to her, and continue to ask for more moments of collection
3) Start fine-tuning our gallop speed and fitness via GPS
4) Continue ironing out the kinks in our Novice test - transitions, freewalk
5) Continue to strengthen and improve my position over fences, on the flat, and during gallops - there is always more to work on!

As for exercising myself.... I fail. A lot. If I am to start running with more regularity, I need to get up at 4am every day, because I just don't have the time or energy during the day or after work. Which is a horrible shame, really, but there is only so much a person can do before they collapse completely.


Like I said before, Gogo's had the better part of this week off (Tuesday-Thursday). I got on her today to do a light, stretchy dressage work, but discovered that since she had just been starting to come into heat last Sunday, she's finishing up her cycle now and OYE it's a strong one. When I went to get on her, she scooted off underneath me - totally unlike her! I went to get off and try again, and she scooted off again! Rude! When I went to get back on her, she held perfectly still, like she normally does, but the second I shifted my weight to pick up my other stirrup, she tweaked and went bolting around the mounting block in circles. Which, of course, made me crack up. She stopped and stood there quietly for a second, and then we walked off nicely, but the rest of the ride wasn't all that productive. We finished with a lot of really quiet walk-trot transitions, but it was obvious she was completley cramped up through her back, and there wasn't much I could do about it. Oh well, these next few days will be filled with galloping, hacking, and jumping, so hopefully by the time dressage-ness comes back around on Tuesday, we'll be quiet and comfortable and non-hormonal and ready to go again!


Cathryn said...

Happy Birthday GoGo!!

Albigears said...

Happy birthday rockin' eventing mare!

Patricia said...

Happy belated birthday Gogo!

Anonymous said...

Aww Happy Belated Birthday GoGo!

What a cute cake!

Anonymous said...

Happy birthday to GoGo and all!

manymisadventures said...

Yay, happy [belated] birthday!