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  • Well we have been very busy. At the end of November Jordan, the ponies and I moved back to Taranaki for the summer. Since we have been back the weather has been pretty reliable and we have had some fantastic days with the horses. Danny has put lots of weight on now and is SUPER shiny! I am filling in a daily blog on my Parelli connect page, will transfer this across to the blog for those that wish to follow the progress of our horses!
  • 7/11: Not long now until we head back to Taranaki for the summer! The grazing is STILL muddy, will not miss that one bit. Have been spending lots of time playing on the ground with the horses and they are making excellent progress. Jazzy has had a few weeny rides and taking it all in her stride :) 
  • 01/10: Yay Jewel is finally under saddle!!! She had her 7th ride today and has finally truly got the hang of what 'go forward' means!! She is soo soo quiet to ride I am riding out on the loosest rein and she is responding very well to my seat for slowing down gaits. Danny is settling in well and is making progress every day. Jazzy is feeling very very full of herself and her favourite thing is hooning around the paddock pretending she cant be caught....what a joke lol! Maverick is in full work now and going really well, he is becoming more confident which is great to see. We picked up a new mare Koha today. Her owner would like to see her out as she has been sitting on the paddock on her own for a while now since her mate died. We intend to use her as our 'lessons' pony. I have updated photos of these happenings to our 'Horses in Spring 2011' Album.     Koha the new girl :) 8 year old full Kaimanawa mare
  • 20/10: Just returned back from a lovely visit to Taranaki. I went up with a friend and 2 horses in the float (my mare Jewel, her mare Dee). It was Jewels first ever time in the float and only the 3rd time she has ever travelled. She was an absolute pro. We arrived on Saturday afternoon and got Mindy and Sundance in. We gave them all a good groom and I drenched Sunny and Mindy and worked with Mindy on her front hooves. She is sooo quiet, there seems to be nothing quite like having a foal you have bred!!! The next day we went for a ride on mum and dads farm then headed up to Lisas which involved another float trip. We had a great day at Lisas playing over in the pongas doing lots of natural jumps. I couldn't believe Jewel she hadn't even had 15 rides and she jumped everything I pointed her at (including 50cm high logs!). We also had a play in Lisas makeshift arena and I had Jewel jumping scary white barrels on their sides! Then on Monday we headed up to my friend Lynleys house where Jewel is originally from. Jewel had the best ride a young horse needs, we went riding on Lynely and Ross' 7000 acre steep hill country sheep and beef property. I was in the saddle for 6 hours straight and we climbed up and down hills, followed cows and did numerous river crossings. Again Jewel didn't bat an eye lid. Sundance even got an outing, Jen sold her horse Dee and James and Allysha came and picked her up from Lisas the day before, so she needed a mount! Sundance hadn't been ridden properly for at least 3 years and she was a little champion, apart from being a bit clingy with Jewel she was a real little angel girl :) We got back Tuesday and Jewel did the 4 hour float trip alone without any stress or drama! Check out the photos in our 'Horses in Spring' album.
  • 20/10 Maverick was SUCH a champion today! I took him and Jewel out to Newbury School to do horsemanship demonstrations. He did 6 20 minute sessions and didn't put a foot wrong. The first session was about the importance of moving the horses body parts, the 2nd and 3rd sessions showed how to get your horse used to a tarpaulin and the 4th, 5th and 6th sessions were with 5-8 year olds so we talked about how to look after our horses and how to brush them, then each child took turns at patting his face! He went from being a bit wary to lowering his face to the children :) Very precious to watch!!! Legendary little pony.
  • We have discovered a better way to share our photos check out the Photo Gallery page and the subpages to meet the past and present Versatile Equines and keep up to date with our events and happenings!
  • YAY Spring has arrived and with it the mud is drying up and the horses are starting to act like they are in work again- no more pawing and fidgeting at the tie up rail! So good to get rugs off and slow down on hay feeding. We have been very lucky to come out of winter with plenty of weight on the horses. Here are some pics of our spring antics!
  • With the arrival of spring I have managed to get some work into Jewel- I can now ride her around in a halter, bareback at a walk. She is lovely and soft, stopping off my seat, flexing softly to the halter and backing up- all in a relaxed manner! She wore the bridle today also, she went through a wee ear issue so we left the bridle, but it appears she has pretty much overcome that now. I will reintroduce the saddle in the next few lessons then when she is comfortable with all that we will start putting it all together so I can go for bigger rides! Jazzy also wore the bridle for the first time today, after half an hour she had stopped playing with it- the saddle will be her next step, then we just need to wait until she grows a bit more so we can ride her!! Maverick is in work again now so we are working with him on the trail, getting him reacquainted with the sights and sounds out of his paddock- I swear he thinks the troughs are cougars.... (they are the same type as the one in his paddock.....hmm?). Here are some pics of Jewel and I from the last few days (03 Sept)
  • 20th: With the sun out things are finally happening!!! Jewel is pretty much 'started under saddle', we just have to trot and canter and I will be convinced :) I have added pictures of her first saddle and bridle ride to the 'Spring' photo album, as well as some pictures from today, including Jazzy having a human on her back!!!! She just needs to grow now and she will be ready to go. Its great to nearly have them all under saddle so we will have them all good to ride for this season. I hope to get out to a few shows and lots of treks! Maverick had his first ever float trip yesterday, we went to Tielcey park and played at liberty in the warm up pen. He was a star, handled the whole situation like he had done it before, I must say I was quite surprised.... :)
  • I am in love! A friend and I took Danny and her horse to Tielcey Park for the day. Danny had only been on a float once and majestics a few days ago so I was expecting loading time to be long! But no, he pretty much walked straight on. Was a wee bit excited when we got there and temporarily forgot his manners. After a few minutes in the arena however he settled down :) Here are some pictures of us. To my knowledge he has not had any schooling and this is us on our 2nd ride (25th).
  • We have the next new addition to the Versatile Equines team- Danny! Danny is a rising 10 year old QH X TB. he was broken in as a 3 year old and ridden over farmland. He was then turned out for 6 years and then 9 months ago got brought back into work by his old owner Haidee's, Dad. He was going well so Haidee brought him to her place to ride with the kids. When he got there however he became a different horse and Haidee felt he was best off with a more competent home. He arrived at 7pm yesterday (22nd) in the dark! He had 2 sessions today a ground work and hang out session this morning. Then this afternoon we went for a ride, he was just lovely- a few things to work on but happy enough to go out for a hack. Here are some pics of Danny in his new home :)
  • Well the ground is soaked, the ponies are covered in mud and the wind is blowing! We have had a few fine days in the mix which have been appreciated. We sadly farewelled Queen today. She has found a new owner, Jess, in Levin. She was a right rat bag to load today, she must have known something different was going on! We wish Jess and Queen all the best and hope they have as much fun together as we did! The ponies are going well, holding condition very well and not giving their rugs too much of a hard time! We are hanging out for summer as we would love to get out and work with the team! Not long to go now. Here are some pictures of Queen at her new home!
  • At the end of July during our university holidays we went back to Taranaki. Sundance and Mindy are doing well. During our visit home we weaned Mindy, much to her disgust! I was pleased to see she hadn't forgotten her earlier lessons and I managed to catch her with ease and continue introducing basic ground work maneuvers like back up, moving hindquarters and leading. 

  • Winter has arrived and we have never had a winter like this one. In Taranaki, even when its wet the land drains. Here in Palmerston North the paddocks are sodden and turing into mini lakes! In light of this the training of our ponies has come not quite to a grinding halt, but to a slow crawl! We are working on desensitising exercises and stationary/small moving sensitising exercises. The ponies are still in great condition which is a new thing for us as well! Queen is still so large her ribs are not evident any where! I am really pleased with how the ponies are looking through winter, but hanging out to get some work done!

  • Redskin has found a lovely new home with Erica. Erica plays competitive mounted games, when she found Redskin and came and tried her she was pretty sure Reddy was up to the task. After a 2 week trial they decided to buy her! Both Jordan and I are really stoked about the outcome! Redskin likes to live life in the fast lane so games is right up her alley! While Erica was riding Reddy with us we showed her some of the really cool things we have taught Redskin to do on the ground and under saddle- mainly based on Clinton Anderson's method. Erica loved it, she now has a set of groundwork and riding cards so she can learn to do these tricks herself with Reddys good teaching! We look forward to seeing Erica's progress not only with this but out on the games field. Spring and Reddy will most probably come head to head at some stage as Erica and Alleysha are mates and compete in the same games events. I am rooting for Spring, but Jordan is convinced Reddy will take it out!
  • We got soft and brought all of the ponies new covers for winter. Palmerston North seems to be a lot colder- well at the grazing anyway as it is very exposed and there is nothing for them to shelter behind in their paddock. Here they are with their cute saddlery warehouse rugs :) 

  • MEERSBROOKE MISS SNAZZY ARRIVES. Snazzy is the newest member of the Versatile Equines team. She is a 2 year old filly from Meersbrooke. Her father is s station bred pony Meersbrooke Sparhawk and he mother is 1/4 clyde and 3/4 TB named Meersbrooke Miss Balmain. We have decided to slightly change her name to Jazzy, at the moment its Snazzy Jazzy as we try and break the habit of calling her Snazzy! If Snazzy prevails though it must have been meant to be! It is estimated that Jazzy will reach full pony height. Going in with the other horses was very uneventful and she is already an accepted member of the herd.
  • Queen a beginner pony!! As well as working on all of her yields, canter leads, jumping, liberty riding and more, Queen has been spending her time teaching a few of my beginner friends to ride. We are riding in controlled situations working on controlling Queens direction, flexing the head, one rein stops, two rein stop and back up!
  • I have started a blog, I would love to have a record of my learning, where I have come from, and interesting thoughts and observations I made at a point in time. So I feel a blog is the way to go. Imagine looking back in 10 years and thinking wow, I knew that then but didn't even know I did, or more horrifyingly, I used to think that!!! So if anyone wants to follow here is the link :)
  • I have also decided to do a blog of Jazzy's progress, I was already recording our progress on a word doc, but have decided to change it to a blog. Here is the link if anyone would like to share and follow her progress
  • While getting techie I have made a Face Book page. Would love to network with like minded individuals :) Hopefully the page will be a base for news, horses for sale, training tips- basically anything that springs to mind!
  • Syndod has found a lovely new home on a dairy farm with a Standardbred as a paddock mate and 3 young horse mad girls! Kelly and her daughters only live 1/2 an hour away so all going well I will be able to go and visit them all and follow Syndod's progression as she becomes a willing partner in teaching these natural riders the art of horsemanship.
  • Maverick has been under saddle for a month now, he is going really well. Jordan is his sole trainer at this stage to establish a solid foundation for other people to build from.
  • Jewels journey as a ridden horse begins! She has been jumped all over and has established groundwork exercises and maneuvers. All it takes now is time and trust. I like to get her really quiet with the gear and me sitting up on her back before we 'properly ride'. Our fist ride will be very small no doubt just working on our lateral flexion, backup and disengaging the hindquarters, incase we need a one rein stop! 
    Here she is with the mouthing gear on and her relaxed with me sitting on her back!
  • This is our current Versatile Equines team in Palmerston North. Hopefully we have one more to add, on the hunt now :) I always think I am too busy for too many horses, then freak out, but that being said we are getting another! 
    Here they are Redskin, Maverick, Jewel and Queen:

  • Mindy will be 3 months old on the 04/03!!!! Below are some pictures of her at 2 months old
  • We have done the big move, as at 11/02/2011- Versatile Equines is now based in Palmerston North! The ponies are only 10 minutes drive away from our new house so we are out working them daily. Jewel is being started under saddle- every day I am doing her lessons with the bridle and bareback pad on- there has been no bucking or ill thought from her towards these new experiences :). The ponies have been experimenting with the electric tape- a new concept for them. At this stage only Syndod and Jewel have managed to escape :)

  • Spring finds a new home :). Spring has been sold to Alleysha and James who play competitive mounted games. Alleshya is number 4 and James number 1!!! I couldn't have wished for a better home for Spring. We are regularly I contact and she is going well- out to jumping days and events and Alleysha is planning on taking her to horse of the year :)