It may have been New Year's Eve, but it was also Monday, which meant all three horses got rides. Everyone had a day off yesterday due to other family events, and it was very cold - the high was in the 20sF with some wind.
But to close out 2012, all three horses were stars. Dawn and I had a very fine ride in the morning. My younger daughter, who is home for the holidays, has been visiting her daily and feeding her candy canes, but Dawn doesn't seem to be holding that against me. Her canter departures from the walk were excellent, and her trot work was very soft and nice.
In the afternoon, there were a few other people at the barn but it was very quiet. Red was excellent - he stood for mounting on a loose rein without fretting, even though we were alone in the arena. His walk work was very good - excellent softness and good small circles and lateral work - walk pirourettes and some leg yield, as well as some marching, long walk. We worked at the walk for about 15 minutes. He was moving very well, and I asked him if trot was a good idea - he said yes, and we had some nice trotting - just the straightaways for a bit, and then we did some big turns around the ends of the arena. He felt very good, and sound. Tomorrow we'll just walk, and we'll see how he does. The cold weather seems to be making whatever it is - hock arthritis? - feel better. He was very pleased with himself when we were done with our ride.
Pie and I then had an excellent ride. He was very forward, and his work at all three gaits was excellent. His canter work is really coming along - his departures are improving, and he's able to sustain canter for a long time and is getting the hang of bending into the corners.
I couldn't have asked for a better end to 2012 - we danced out the year. Tomorrow, New Year's Day, it's supposed to be very cold - the high is expected to be 16F with some wind - but we'll be riding again.
A Happy New Year to all!