A lovely ride out this morning although Théoden was almost undone by a man seemingly having a fight with a yellow Wendy house. Today was the day that Bella felt like a normal riding horse rather than a baby horse; no more nannying duties for me.
This is something I wondered if I would ever see - Henrietta with me holding up her front foot. She has no problem balancing she just worries about predators that want to touch her legs and feet. Amazing progress; it's only taken me a year!
Everything else is getting easier too. Having taken offence at the Velcro on the almost-a-headcollar the other day, she accepted it much more readily today and didn't get upset when she realised that it was fixed.
With a lot of the basic work completed last week, there was only one thing to do with Zelda and Zoe today - more basic work. It's only through repetition and consolidation that we can build firm foundations rather than a house of cards.
The only new task we introduced today was walking over the tarpaulin. We'll gradually make it wider as the week goes on.
Another walk out on the Forest and the two of them are completely relaxed. Both lived out on the Forest as foals so will see this as their rightful heritage.
Before they go showing they'll both need to be able to trot freely on the lead rein. This comes more naturally to Zoe who is a forward, forwards, forwards pony, whereas Zelda has a tendency to think 'backwards' with a stronger into-pressure response. That will be tomorrow's area of work.
and one from Zoe to Nadia. Thrilled to bits with our new 'intern' who has already earned a proper badge. Not only can she open gates, pick up poo, and take photographs, she's really good with the ponies and picks up all of the concepts we work with fantastically quickly. Nadia has just finished her Animal Management Course at Hartbury College and is off to Writtle next to look at horse rehabilitation/therapy. I already know that she'll be good.