I am thankful that Colin is in the kitchen cooking while I'm in the living room drinking coffee!
I'm thankful for my family and my friends, Colin being at the top of the list.
I'm thankful for my health and my good fortune.
I'm thankful for my dogs and cats and horses and that they are happy and healthy.
I'm thankful that our living room floor was done just in time for today! Actually, I'll spend the day putting everything back in place and cleaning the house so our guests have somewhere to sit!
I'm thankful that I don't have to work today.
I'm thankful that we decided a few years ago to not do Xmas presents anymore so I don't have to spend time shopping for stuff that people really don't need because they already have what they want.
I'm thankful that my lessons keep getting better and better. Which leads me to the rest of my post. I was having a pouting pity-party the other day when I posted the videos of Mac. But I'm over it now. He really has made a lot of progress and I do see that. I was focusing on one thing that I saw (or didn't see) in the videos, but when I go back and look at them, I see something else that really important, which is straightness. Sheesh, for a long time we couldn't even go on a circle that resembled anything like a circle, and cantering with any semblence of balance was impossible. Now he's straight - wait, let me rephrase that. Now I can ride him and give him the aids to help him stay straight in his body (meaning, he doesn't just automatically go straight, but he lets me help him get there), we can go in a 20-m circle and it looks like a circle, and we can canter in a circle with some measure of balance, both longitudinally and laterally. He really is a very cool horse and I'm so happy to have him. He's got some attitude, but I like that in a horse and it is what makes our journey interesting and exciting (ok, and sometimes frustrating).
We went on a trail ride on Monday and I rode him bareback (with the awesome warm fleece-on-the-inside breeches that my friend gave me). We came upon two little dogs who were off-leash, and their owner who was walking behind them. We were at a state park which has an on-leash rule, but sometimes people don't pay attention to it. One of the little dogs was a Bichon and the other was a Pug. The lady stopped and tried to call the dogs back but they wouldn't mind her. Mac and I stopped to let her get everything sorted out. The little Pug ran up to Mac and started barking at him, reminiscent of the old "I'm a chicken-hawk and you're a chicken!" cartoon. Mac just stood there, with all this feet planted on the ground, calm as could be, put his nose down to sniff the dog, but otherwise didn't move. I told the lady it was ok, that Mac liked dogs and that we'd just stand there and wait for her to get the dog back on the leash. She was so impressed with Mac - she was nice enough to be worried that her dog would scare him and I'd fall off! - she complimented him on his calm temperament. That made me feel so good. I always tell people he's a mustang and that he was born in Nevada because I think it is an interesting tidbit that people should know!
Colin came with us on the ride (on his mountain bike) but by that time he was way ahead of us. He caught up with us at the tail end and he rode his bike next to us as we moseyed back to the trailer. That was good, too, because we see bikes all the time and the more ho-hum they are to Mac, the better.
Well, looks like Colin is wrapping it up in the kitchen so we're going to move some furniture and I'll start cleaning. Happy Thanksgiving to all!