Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Baby Steps...

Level 2 Freestyle Audition...1st attempt.

2nd Letter to Nancy! (January 2012)


It’s amazing how things change and we grow throughout our horse-man-ship journey. We think we are going to “fix” our horse. Then we realize WE are the ones who need “fixing!” Everything has fallen into place like you said it would. We got balance in our LOVE, LANGUAGE, & LEADERSHIP. We graduated Level 2 Online!!!!...a goal that I thought was out of reach a while ago! J Now we are riding! Wow! I’m still amazed at the transformation you have given Decker and myself!

It is crazy how peer pressure doesn’t go away after your school days. Horse people…and by that I mean non-Parelli students, can pressure and criticize your principles and timelines! I’ve really had to stand my ground for my principles and Decker’s timeline! With the pressure to just “break” Decker and ride the tar out of him, I had to just immerse myself into studying the Parelli way. That has helped along with your guidance and support! I am so blessed to have you as my instructor and my friend! I’ve done a lot of soul searching and praying, because you know that I was almost ready to give up all together. I was afraid I was going to be forced to sell Decker. I thought that we were the worst match ever and that my confidence was gone for good. I have studied our Horsenality/Humanality Match Report, and it seems I’m attracted to my opposite, both in my horse and my husband!!!!! It is easier said than done, but you are helping me achieve my goal of mental, emotional, and physical fitness! Thank you!

When I dropped off Decker to you on New Years day, I was in tears and ready to sell him. I thought there was no way with the lack of support at home and our opposite personality/horsenality that we could mesh EVER!!!! Boy did you prove both of us wrong! J I was so happy to hear you say that Decker had made some really nice changes and was doing well! I was afraid before that my lack of knowledge and leadership had ruined him forever! Thankfully Decker is forgiving of my flaws and is patient as I’m learning! You have been the lifesaver that we both needed to help us in our Parelli journey! I knew I didn’t have the knowledge and confidence to start Decker. Thankfully you have given us HOPE!!! Now we are at the end of January and I haven’t felt better about where we are headed! The fact that we are about to video our Level 2 Freestyle Audition is just CRAZY!!!!! It feels so awesome that Decker and I have done all of this together!!!!!

Thank you so much for believing in us Nancy! You will never know how much you mean to us! Thank you for going on this crazy rollercoaster with us!

Brooke Jeffries & Decker Details!
McRae, GA
Well the past two days have been awesome with Decker! I feel so much more confident with him. I think I start doubting myself and just need some positive encouragement to push me again. I know we have it in us, its just coming together and making it happen!

I sat down and wrote notes about our lesson, so I could read over them and really make sure I "got" it! :)

The key things I learned were:

FOCUS!!!!!! Look where I'm going and have a plan. Leaders don't look to the horse.

Phase one is the thought and go straight to phase 4 if he ignores me. It is better to make an impression on him quickly than TAPPING and desensitizing him.

Help him move when he needs to or acts like a punk.

For every inch he takes, make him move a foot away from me.

Extreme Friendly game will give him more confidence. Do more friendly game in zones 4 and 5.

80/20 ratio of play and rest.

Hang in there when he throws a fit...they don't last that long.

Change it up so the games and patterns don't become chores.

I need to breath and have more confidence in myself.

And finally read him. Blowing out, head down, yawning, sleepy look, standing quietly, licking and chewing.

I know that's alot, but I wanted to let you know how much you helped me. I think my mind was in a melt down stage when I contacted you. All the negative comments and pressure from everyone around me had just beat me down to nothing. I was even doubting myself. Not the program at all, just if I could do it alone! Now I know I can! Like you said, it will all fall into place all of a sudden!

Yesterday and today I worked with Decker! He was great!!!! So willing and he had such a great look on his face since I knew how to get the "cream off the top!"

I basically spent 2 to 3 hours with him working on everything we touched on in our lesson. I don't know if it was luck or if I'm getting better at predicting when he is going to have a punk moment, but the first time I asked Decker to jump the barrels he tried to throw his shoulder into me again and I put pressure with my carrot stick on his shoulder at the perfect moment! He jumped it! He knows that is what I'm asking now!!!!!! I let him rest after the first jump yesterday and then later went back to it and he willingly jumped it again. It was awesome! Today I only had him jump it a few times, but every time he knew what to do and was great! I even tried a little more liberty! He walked with me for a few steps and then he decided that he had to leave! I helped him move and it only took a few times around at the canter before he was back to wanting to please. I did what you said and asked him to keep disengaging his hindquarters. It worked and once I got him connected again, I quit. It was great! I found all of his itchy spots and both sessions ended really well.

Sorry for the book! I'm just really excited. I really think Decker enjoyed it to. When I put him back out in his pasture, he just stood there with me. :)

Thanks again for everything!

Brooke Jeffries

Flying J Farms