We Progress

Unfortunately Bridget didn’t accept Sophie back into her life as seamlessly as I’d hoped. She really is that odd pony who prefers to live alone if she can. On arrival at the barn last week, I was met with a very grumpy Bridget and a brand new section of fence destroyed, with 2 posts sheared off at the ground. I have no idea what really happened but the evidence suggests B ran into the fence pretty hard, likely threatening Sophie on the other side. I was having a few issues myself with B being very pushy and in our space and generally questioning the rules.

Cursing myself for cementing the posts in, apparently I just created a lever that makes them easier to snap at ground level (and a giant rock to dig out before I replace the post)

I know it's just horses doing horse things, and B was likely just feeling like her resources were being threatened. It sure made me worry things weren’t going to work…so funny as going into this I had wondered if Sophie would fit to our little barn and she’s been completely unproblematic - the drama was all B!

Luckily, it seems to have settled down now. I’ve been able to leave them sharing a paddock for longer and longer periods and I saw B sharing a hay pile with S this morning, a sure sign things are going to be OK.
This seems better

The dry weather here is holding, we haven’t had much rain at all since June. Completely unheard of, but excellent for me because we got the ring base finished this week! 

Sophie's been entertained by all the activity - proving me wrong yet again. She was zero percent stressed about dump trucks and excavators working and spent her afternoons in the barn quietly watching the goings on.

It looks huge from this angle, but it's really about 75 x120 and evenly splits the area behind the barn between ring and grass paddock.

Bad at picture angles, you'll just have to trust me there is a nice paddock space left above the ring-to-be.

Next up, I take a big time out on that project. While it’s tempting to add the footing and call it done, for now we’re going to continue to harrow/level it and just let it settle and compact as long as I can stand it. I think the time taken now to make sure it’s going to hold up well in winter rains will pay off in the long run. I’m probably worrying too much, but our club arena ended up with the sand migrating and water pooling the first winter and I wonder if that could have been prevented if we had waited even a week or two and seen where the water flowed and collected on the base and adjusted accordingly. 

Moving on, we started the back fence line this past weekend and it’s a project and a half. It’s along a lane way and it seems that 50 plus years of road crews grading towards the low side (our property) means the road eventually came onto our property line. So, I get about 2’ deep of compacted ground and rock to dig through. We rented an auger, but it’s mostly a case of needing shovels and pry bars and getting 2 or 3 posts in a day. I voted to move the fence line in off the old road, but G’s determined not to give up our space (and that’s a valid enough argument when you only own a little over an acre lol)

4 days of digging up rocks. RIP to my favorite shovel.

Posts are happening though. I'm planting the shrubs as I go as a reward, because that's the fun part. Plan is for a 6' post and rail fence with wire mesh, and an eventual hedge inside. We've made the fence a foot higher than originally planned because you wouldn't believe the amount of nosy people, sometimes even stopping their vehicles to sit and stare at me working or riding. I don't know if that's a 'thing' elsewhere,  I find it really uncomfortable.

I finally organized a replacement for our missing farrier and got Sophie a saddle that fits her newly bigger self better, so the hope is to get back to work this week. She’s got plenty of energy needing some direction. Enough that I think we’ll start with longeing and groundwork for a week or two ;) This break to focus on property improvements was always the plan, but it’s been a bit of a tough slog this summer (even this entire year, in fact) without much riding progress (hacking B is fun, but I get bored), so I’m looking forward to getting back at it. 

Speaking of nosy...these two creeping me everywhere I go;)

We Progress