August 21, 2023

Connor's Lease

After a year of not riding much, I've tried to leg Connor up a few times this year. And it's become clear to me that while he will always do anything I ask, he's not really enjoying my reindeer games of choice much anymore.

However, he does love it when I pop on bareback and drink a Ranch Water on his back while toodling. Can this be a sport?

He's perfectly sound, but still has bouts of headshaking on 2nd Level+ Dressage contact. He's forward enough, but getting him Dressage-level in front of my leg isn't as instantaneous as it used to be. He's willing, but he's not WILLING.

As ever with this horse, he comes first. Eight years ago, I still wanted to event, but he didn't, so I changed to Dressage for him. Now, at the age of 17, he's telling me he's not interested in doing Dressage anymore, and I'm willing to hang that up for a bit too. When we ride now, we do a lot of playing with our bodies on a long, hunter-length contact. Shoulder fore, leg yield, changes of bend, that kind of thing. I am perfectly happy to do that kind of thing and trail ride him until he's ready for full retirement...

...unless the perfect on-site full lease situation comes up. Which it did.

She willlll be wearing a helmet next time, just forgot it the first time.

The woman that used to basically run the barn for the BOs before my trainer's program moved in has moved back to Indiana this summer. Deb is nearly 70 but no joke I thought she was in her mid 50's until two weeks ago - maybe there's something to yoga after all, lol. 

She used to ride endurance and is a sweet soul, a lovely, capable rider, a fantastic horsewoman who really puts the horse first, and she cares about the facility as if it was her own - literally was on her hands and knees scrubbing a poop stain off the floor when I pulled up to meet her at the barn a couple weeks ago.


As soon as she got back, she told me she was shopping for something calm and safe that she could practice Masterson method on (she's nearly certified), trail ride and learn from. I said - why not Connor? I mean seriously, if I could ask him what he wants right now and his options were what I ask him to do, or getting massaged every day and toodling around a few times a week, it's obvious what he'd choose. Plus, bonus, we'd be getting a sorely needed third co-op member out of it, someone else to help with chores. It's as good for all of us as it is for Connor.

So starting today, she is full leasing him. Mary, Annie and I will ride him every so often, but not much. I really want him to feel like he's hers. She's going to take "lessons" (unpaid) from me every so often and learn the basics of Dressage from him, which he's perfect for.

But if you're doing the math, that leaves me horseless. Which is why...*plot thickens* To be continued 😁


  1. how is he 17 already?! wow, time flies... sounds like a really wonderful situation for all involved, even tho i know it's not easy to realize that goals and objectives with a longtime partner might be changing in subtle (or not-so-subtle) ways... and ugh omg what a cliffhanger lol, can't wait to hear more!

    1. I've had him 12 years in November! Honestly it's all good, all of this feels so good and so right. It's okay for things to change as you go through the years.

  2. Lucky Connor, this sounds like the perfect fit. Selfishly I love that we're making very similar decisions for very similar reasons...I know it's the right thing to do but it does feel a little lonely when people question it. I can't wait to see what your plans are!

  3. What a lucky Connor <3 Looking forward to finding out what's next for you, too!

  4. Which is why *plot thickens* WHAT

  5. You always manage to transition with grace - looking forward to hearing about your next phase :)

  6. OMG... the cliffhanger!
    Sounds like the perfect situation for Connor and for all of you at the barn! Can't wait to read the rest of the story...