Thursday, 31 December 2009

Thinking ahead

As we approach the end of another year I haven't much to report! Up until yesterday the boys were still ice-bound in the field. Quadi and I had a little 'discussion' the other day about whether or not it was polite to steal Fin's feed in the field! Fin doesn't seem to mind too much but he needs the feeds more than Quadi ;)

Yesterday, after a smattering of snow, we were able to bring the boys inside so that we could give them a proper groom and check over rather than the once-over they get in the paddock. We were forecast more snow for today so I popped a fleece under the 450g rug Quadi's already wearing as he's still awfully cool under it. We've had snow and are due more for the rest of today, but it's also sunny so I hope he's not too hot now! Can't seem to get it right. I'm not really one for wrapping my horse in cotton wool but Quadi does feel the cold. It's obviously worse for him in the wind and rain, but this is his first winter out for a couple of years so I can excuse his sensitivity!

Thanks again to the snow the boys might be ridden today. Not sure who will be in the saddle yet, but fingers crossed for a New Year's Eve bimble :)

I had to get my fringe trimmed at the hairdresser today. My hairdresser is in the gym, the gym I've not been to since April :o Technically today is the last day I can use my membership. I didn't feel drawn to go in! I don't think I'll renew it, it's expensive and the very reason I started going, and started this blog, was because I didn't have my horse. And now I do, so I'm back to spending my pennies on my pony!

Even though I got my horse back this year, if I'm honest I expected to lose him before the end of it :( We didn't have much luck with lameness and illness and I steeled myself for the same outcome as Larri @ (I can't do links!) with his sister Safira, whom she most sadly lost this year.

So, looking forwards, I'm more than grateful to still have my tough-as-old-boots little horse with me. There's still a long slog ahead to soundess but I'm not complaining! I'm very excited about another year with Quadrado. A year of success and of smiles. He never fails to make me laugh!

For those who haven't had a great 2009, I hope the coming year brings you love and laughter. And for the rest of us, more of the same please! xxx

Monday, 28 December 2009

Ice, ice and more ice

Not much to report since we can't get the boys out of their paddock! I think Kate and I were both rather hoping that we'd get some above zero temperatures or more sun to melt away some of the ice. Instead, we've had as low as minus six overnight and lots of rain to create some very slick ice on the roads and indeed even pavements. Quadi and Fin are far better off in the field. They're bored, but fed and watered, warm and dry. Feeding in the field is somewhat of a pain because the boys start to forget their manners. And because Quadi hoovers his feed he's always bothering Fin for his. A headcollar and leadrope is necessary to keep him out of Fin's way. Not much worse than trying to eat your tea when someone's intercepting every mouthful!

Tomorrow I shall buy some big tubs of table salt and take them up, see if I can clear some paths. Not necessarily for horses, but at least for people! I almost came a cropper a few times when crossing the yard!

On Sunday our friend and horse physio got her new mare to our old livery :) Kate was the taxi, I headed out as loading backup but didn't have time to stay and settle her in. I am looking forward to this coming weekend when I can go out and meet her properly. She's just turned two in autumn and is a traditional cob x WB. A very even-tempered little filly with a leg in each corner. With her new Mum's permission I shall post some photos after our visit!

Saturday, 26 December 2009


Not horsey news, but worth a mention...!

We settled down to festive movie on Christmas Eve (in the form of Die Hard!) and near the end our doorbell rang. I went out to greet one of our neighbours enquiring as to whether we had electricity, because half of our building had been cut off. Luckily we hadn't, we offered help to anyone who required but didn't hear from anyone the rest of the night....

Christmas morning arrives, and I had already overslept. I had a goose to prep and banana and cranberry bread to bake :) I had decided upon smartening myself up should a camera appear before I was ready. Just as I reached for the hair straighteners my bedroom light went out! Scottish Hydro, in their infinite wisdom, had restored power to everyone at 8.10am but had to switch off the whole building at 8.30am, unannounced, so that they could repair the fault. Which turned out to be an underground cable so we had several trucks in our street coupled with a mini-digger. And now a very large hole in the pavement!

If they had warned us we wouldn't have power we could have boiled up a few kettles of water and offered them a cuppa but they didn't so :p to them! I know the had to be called out on Christmas Eve but a little warning would have been an idea, there are a lot of older people in our building.

Since we couldn't help anyone here, we decanted ourselves, plus food and alcohol down to my boyfriend's flat. After present opening of course! Not exactly the day we'd hoped for but there are people who don't get to eat on 25th December, who don't get to be with loved ones, who don't have a roof over their head never mind no power, who don't get presents, so no complaints. I was home with loved ones and it was all very exciting, like an army bug out! We returned home in the evening, stuffed to our gunnels, to lights and heat, just in time to have a cup of tea and go to bed.

And despite never having cooked goose before, it was lip-smackingly tasty, even if I do say so myself!

I haven't visited Quadi yesterday or today. Really, really need a car! I am heading out there tomorrow, the boys have spent two days in their field because even the path into the yard is sheet ice, having had rain over snow and slush :(

Hopefully a bit of sun and above-freezing temperatures will see us right again.

I am feeling better but still have a 'crackling' chest, so am going to try and see a doctor for antibiotics if that's what is needed. Don't expect I'll shift this otherwise! It usually takes a broken limb to keep me off a horse, and sometimes not even then...

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Season's Greetings :)

Squeezed in a Christmas Eve hack on Quadi today, which was lovely. He was great as ever! He wasn't so chuffed to pose for an e-card photo though...

Kate will be taking care of them tomorrow. I'll be in the kitchen all day!

Merry Christmas everyone, hope you have a wonderful day with your loved ones, human and beastie!

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

The Chest Infection Returneth

Being out in the cold all weekend has rendered me useless with a chest infection, which has today mutated into a head cold. I have antibiotics lest I get pneumonia. Again.

We had over a foot of snow in town overnight, and more of the same again today, which meant I was unable to get to the yard. I have a hire car but wasn't prepared to throw it around on untreated roads. The boys are right around the corner from Kate and she has kindly offered to take care of them for now. I feel terrible about this, I'm away often enough I should be doing my bit when I'm home. But she said they're content, toasty in their rugs, plenty of hay and we've insulated their water bucket so that it doesn't develop thick ice over the top. It was about minus 8 last night and whilst it had iced over, it wasn't thick and they'd been able to break the top themselves. Clever boys!

Because of the weather I've had to cancel today's lameness check-up indefinitely. I'm not worried about him, it's a formality, but obviously it would be nice to know everything inside that leg is healthier than it was three months ago.

The weather also meant Kate and I couldn't move a friend's new little filly, Lola. It would have been nice to have her 'home' for Christmas but that's not looking likely :(

The Terrible Two did have the dentist yesterday. They were reasonably behaved, Quadi doing his usual thing of trying to squish the new person against the wall. He does this with most new people who are trying to work with him. Once he realises they are going to do what they want no matter how he protests he is a lamb. Always has to make a fuss first though! Kate was very impressed with her handling so hopefully with more visits Quadi won't feel the need to be so rude.

I wasn't there and haven't read her write-up yet but the crack in one of his molars is still there, still quite bad, but is a common condition and because it's not bothering him at all, we agreed to leave well alone. He also had a hook which has been removed, so not too bad considering how overdue he was. Bad Danni!

I am hoping upon hope I can make it out tomorrow, it just wouldn't do if I couldn't see my boy before Christmas. Not that I've bought him a present, I think I've spent enough on him this year!

Sunday, 20 December 2009

Don't tell...

...but I had a little sneaky hack today. Shhhhh!

Quadi's been looking sound in every respect lately and I've had such a hectic week, as has Kate, that we thought it would be nice to go for a mooch in the forest. I was apprehensive but I felt it was the right thing to do. We have two very bored horses at the moment!

As if to demonstrate just how bored...whilst I was stood in Quadi's stable, his bit in my hands as I tried to warm it up, he was nibbling at his bridle and trying various parts of it in his mouth, and then pulling the bit out of my hands! I've never known him so keen. He was perfect to mount but he bogged off as soon as I was on, made a beeline for Fin and bit his neck! Norty norty pony!

He led us all off the yard and it became apparent very quickly how much better he was feeling, because he has never felt so good to sit on. Big easy cat-like stride, his barrel was swinging to and fro, and I could really feel him powering along from behind.

Not to cover himself in too much glory, he kept trying to hamstring Fin when we were behind, and it was hard to ask him to listen to me. I settled for joystick-style steering on a long rein in order that we were both relaxed in mind at least. I got in a pickle with the contact!

We also came across monsters. Both boys stopped and snorted at a water container. It did take me a moment to encourage Quadi past it. He grew a hand and scuttled past it, spooking Fin in the process. They were a little 'looky' after this!

In order to try and get Quadi to lead I had to Pony Club-boot a couple of times, but it worked because he went forwards instead of back. It wasn't too hard, but I really had to mean what I was asking and I did ask nicely twice :)

A lovely afternoon and I've spent the entire day since beaming like a loon. Very big wide grin indeed!

Tomorrow both lads have the dentist, and then Tuesday is vet day. So much to cram in, and so little time! I'm glad I got to spend an hour or two with my boy today :)

Thursday, 17 December 2009

Pre-Christmas Blues

I have no right or need to feel like this mind you, selfish child that I am!

I made it home a few days later than planned and via Hull, rather sadly, but am home again which is the main thing. They boys are well. Bored I should imagine, but I'm working in the office and by the time I get out to them it's black and cold and I can't see owt!

Quadi is booked in for his check up on Tuesday, weather permitting. Lameness work-up, x-rays and ultrasound. Having the all-clear for him would be the best present I've ever had. I am more nervous this time around, I'm hoping the long road we've come along doesn't extend too much farther. Because I'm tired!

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Bouncing like a cork

I expect that's what we'll be doing for the next couple of days. The great news is I am heading home, and I don't have to fly. The bad news is the sail from Bergen to Aberdeen will be very lively indeed. Having just perused the shipping forecast I can see severe weather warnings for the Norway side (Viking, North Utsire & South Utsire for those in the know!) and high winds in Forties too. Hurrah(!) I have some anti-seasickness meds prepped, although I don't want to take them because they make me thirsty and sedate me to the point of being unable to talk. I'm sure those around me won't mind that at all ;)

The forecast also means the sail will take longer than usual, but I'll be home on Thursday. Hurrah!

Onto Quadi: the weather and dark nights mean poor Kate doesn't always get to work with them. She has been doing a lot of ride-and-lead which is great for both boys. Quadi is looking sound and feeling well enough to harrass poor Fin by bum-nipping when his buddy is trying to have a roll. He's happy and healthy and I am looking forward to seeing him.

I have some photos of Quadi from when Kate's friend visited in the summer, have a cracking headshot and some funny rude pics when Quadi got very excited about physio stretches. Must remember to ask her permission to post them!

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

It's December!

H-E-double hockeysticks, is it really that time already?

Word from home is that the horses are well. Quadi is looking very sound, so am looking forward to getting home and seeing that he gets the all-clear. The power of positive thought! He definitely needs to do some work.

The temperature has taken a nosedive, both here in Norway and back in the UK. Here, we've had snow :) And the temperatures are into minus figures overnight where I live. So the boys are in warmer rugs. Well, Quadi's now got a liner in his Duo. He's ripped the velcro off of the neck attachments of his rug. Whilst he doesn't need it, Kate wanted to put it on to see whether or not the hair on his neck would lie flat.

I'm offhsore but thinking about all the presents I have to buy. Normally I'd have them all bought by now! Still a couple of weeks until I'm home. This one's really dragging :( I celebrated the first day of December yesterday with a Chrismas movie, Elf :D