Wednesday, August 21, 2013

"Versatility" with Jingle.

When I brought Jingle home, it wasn't because he was going to be my next 1D Barrel Horse, or Futurity winnter, it was because I loved him so dearly that my heart would ache when he wasn't near. The two of us have a sometimes weird, inseperable bond. Sometimes, in my craziest moments, I often think that he can truly understand me when I speak to him. When he first came home, my Mantra for Jingle was that he could be whatever he wanted to be. This meant in the first year of our official partnership we stumbled through a few disciplines, jack of all trades, master of none kind of thing.

I basically just wanted to test out a bunch of things, and whatever discipline he seemed to like best, would be what we would do together. It was kind of a radical experiment in horsemanship... do what the horse wants to do. Now, a year later, a couple lameness and saddle fit issues have caused some set-backs and we haven't been able to fully attempt this experiment of mine or even show. (Gymkhana pony was suppose to be on the list for this summer... not happening as of right now).

But, goddamnit, we have dabbled!

Here's a year in review:
When I first brought him home, I dreamt of glittery shirts and saddles, and that flat-footed WP jog. My very forward horse had different ideas and really needed to learn how to slow down, something we are still working on.

Western Pleasure - not in the near future.

To get him to slow down, and think, we dabbled in Trail. Something I think that with time, and consistency, and a big check on his attitude, Jingle will actually excel at. This, so far, has been a contender for what my horse "wants to do".

We've tried Sorting, which continues to confuse Jingle.
His cow-sense is a bit... lacking.

Jingle: If you say so mahm....

Jingle's most favourite title, "kids horse"

Jingle likes this because I am on the ground, where he can see me (no tricky business - like leg yields), the riders are small and have little control (pesky mahm being on the ground does though), and he doesn't have to work hard. Perfect.

He also thinks that perhaps it's time for us to try Liberty Horse...

Jingle: You will not be needing THIS torture device any longer Mahm.
... which he thinks means "at liberty to not be ridden"...

Jingle: Fooled me once... You are NOT Stacy Westfall Mahm.

We've even strapped on an english saddle and Jumped a few baby cross rails - now that was fun.

Jingle: Yes, readers, that is my dork mother wearing cowboy boots when she's riding an "english horse"... le sigh.

More often than not, Jingle desperately wants to be a  pasture puff...

Jingle: Look how exceptionally regal I am without tack, or rider. Why would you want to mess with that?!

Jingle has done the Guide Horse thing...

He also holds the record as potentially the worst guide horse ever to debut at the ranch. His stunts included, but are not limited to, suddenly deciding to lope through forests, pulling back violently, forgetting how to turn left and never being particularly safe, or trustworthy out in the bush. However, he was, and remains, the fastest walking horse I have ever sat. His drive is incredible, but also takes over his brain sometimes, which often results in us crashing through brush and deadfall without taking a moment to.. ya know... think.

However, he has decided that being a Ranch Horse isn't so bad..

His favourite activities continue to be: walking fast, getting places, crashing through things, playing in water... all things he has decided a "ranch horse" can do.

Jingle: Please don't listen to a word this crazy lady has to say

So, that is where we are now - sorta kinda figuring stuff out, this spring and summer has been a bit of a dissapointment riding-wise. Between his problems and how busy I've been, we haven't spent much time in the saddle at all. However, one thing that my horse totally and completely excels at

is being my shoulder to lean and cry on...

&, I would take that over any discipline, any time.

However - unbeknowst to Jingle, I've decided next on the agenda is Roping and Dressage... get ready for it!

Jingle: WUT?! You can't be serious..

Jingle: I thought we were friends, people, but animal services has yet to come and collect me. What a hard life this life is.


  1. Ha Ha! I love that "WUT?" picture!

  2. Hmmmmm, how about the cowboy up challenge? Bet he'd have fun at that! Speed! Fun things to do!

    1. Cowboy Up Challenge was our "goal" actually, I wanted to do our first one come September.. then with lameness, soreness and busy-ness in both our lives, the training wasn't there. Hopefully soon! One of these days! haha

  3. Haha What a character! He is so cute and as long as you are enjoying him who needs a specific discipline???

    I also have to say I am sooo jealous you get to spend time going cutting in Arizona this winter! I so want to go but will have to see, I wont have a job so wont be the same but still fun :)

    1. Haha, I know! Going through all these photos to compile this post I had to laugh.. my horse sure is a ham. I agree!

      Well if you come down, we'll have to meet up stateside! I'm so excited I could burst.. now if only I could get some real planning in.. haha