Sunday, July 29, 2012

Friendship - Horsemanship

Friday, July 27, 2012

Bestest Pony!

To beat the unexpected summerheat I left early to the stable and did a short long reining session which we ended with a lovely lay down - see picture.
Squeezed in 30min beach time before going to work and a quick shopping tour for catfood for the little homeless danish cat, which we have been feeding for 2 months now. On my days of my dear collegue Dahlia who lives close by our work is going there to feed her - and I guess all the other cats that come around for free buffe ;).
In case anyone who lives around Helsingborg or Fredensborg who would like to give a little gray cat a forever home feel free to contact me

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Wise Words by Steve Jobs

"For most things in life, the range between best and average is 30% or so. The best airplane flight, the best meal, they may be 30% better than your average one. What I saw with Woz was somebody who was fifty times better than the average engineer. He could have meetings in his head. The Mac team was an attempt to build a whole team like that, A players. People said they wouldn’t get along, they’d hate working with each other. But I realized that A players like to work with A players, they just didn’t like working with C players. At Pixar, it was a whole company of A players. When I got back to Apple, that’s what I decided to try to do. You need to have a collaborative hiring process. When we hire someone, even if they’re going to be in marketing, I will have them talk to the design folks and the engineers." Source: Isaacson's book

On being excellent
“For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.”—Steve Jobs

“Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.

The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”

“There’s a phrase in Buddhism, ‘Beginner’s mind.’ It’s wonderful to have a beginner’s mind.”

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”

"People think focus means saying yes to the thing you've got to focus on. But that's not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully."

On June 12th 2005, Steve Jobs gave the commencement address at Stanford University. Below are a few clips from his powerful speech

Find your true passion and do what you love to do

"Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don't lose faith. I'm convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You've got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don't settle.”


The Days Are Long But The Years Are Short

aka time flies when you are having fun...and in my case even the days are way too short.
So much to do so little time...
Summer returned to Sweden and we have spending our afternoons on the beach and doing lots of fun stuff - not horserelated, like picking blueberries and raspberries, having lunch at the "Tomaternas hus" in Vallåkra where I ate the best tomatoe pie ever and afterwards we visited a huge antic place and it felt like being in a musuem except you could actually buy all the things. I love antics!
Last Sunday we got invited to Johan´s friends down in Malmö and met a bunch of nice, intelligent people. It was super fun and stimulating!
Of course I have been playing with Milva almost every day as well. Yesterday it was really hot here and I was at the barn very late. After having swedish chocolate cake with the girls I played for a little while with the pony and came home at 10.30pm. It was still a bit ligth when I left the stable and fairly warm outside. It was marvellous!
Mostly we are playing with level 4 tasks with the sadle on and by the end of the sessions I usully put my foot in the stirrup and wait for her to relax.
Milva is still super sensitive when I put my foot in. No progress with the green ball yet. I can have all kind of other stuff on her back though like the big white plastic wrap from the hay. No sitting on her though before she accepts the ball...
I´m waiting for the grass to get cut and then I will try to tape my level 4 audition. She has been doing flying leadchanges with the sadle on as well but it´s still a bit hard to maintain canter for several laps. It just doesn´t make sense to

Bestest Neighbour Ever!

Johan ordered two books about photographing horses. I already think he is doing an amazing job as it is! More great pictures will come...

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Green Ball

No riding Milva yet. I don´t consider her ready yet... I´m still trying to get her used to have the Parelli ball on her back and it kind of baffled me that she wouldn´t except it and actually get really worried and right brain about interesting... So tomorrow I will bring a smaller ball and see if that makes a difference.
I have played the 7 games with her with the saddle on and moved her around alot in w/t/c - so far so good.  Only I have to watch out that she doesn´t lay down with the saddle on.
Yesterday I moved the saddle around and put my foot in the stirrup which was a big thing for her because she yawned alot afterwards and licked my hands very much.
Today we went blueberry picking up in Småland and in the evening I gave a little liberty demonstration to the dutch girls that are visiting the farm right now.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Busy Days

It´s been some busy days lately. With playing with Milva and riding Orkan before going to work there is not much time over for internet and then it´s busy at work as well. Seems to be highseason for "crossing over".
Shawn has been riding Orkan a few times and it goes very well. Milva and I haven´t been doing anything serious lately, just fooling around more or less.
Today I had the luxury of going to the the stable twice.
Early afternoon I let her graze for 2 hours and then played 20min at liberty. While she grazed she had the bareback on.
In the evening I put the sadle on and played through all 7 games and w/t/c in the circling game.
She was a trooper when I saddled her. She didn´t have a saddle on for over one year. As far as I remember I rode her maybe 7 times last year. Neverless she stood completely still while I saddled her - loose, munching on her hay.
Maybe there is hope that she too will be a ridinghorse one day ;).
Well, actually Shawn said he would sit on her tomorrow so we will see.....

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson

...the question is, how many books can you have in your favourite top 10 list, farthermore how many books can be the number one favourite book?

As you all know I read alot, and I mean ALOT. All kinds of books for that matter.
When I started to read this book it became a marathon read which doesn´t happen too often. I read 6 hours straight when I first started to read it and I took it with me everywhere. I read in the stable while Milva grazed, in the car when I had to wait for Shawn somewhere and so on.
You know when I always say, "if you read only one book a year this would be the book" - well, here you go again... read this one, really, it´s one of the best!
I often have a notebook (in the iphone) close by when I read to write down some notes or other book recommendations.
Naturally Steve Jobs read alot and I got some awesome recommendations which I plan to read:

- "Diet for a small planet" by Frances Moore Lappe
- "Mucusless Diet Healing System" by Arnold Ehret
- "Zen Mind, Beginners Mind" by Shunryu Suzuki
- "Autobiography of  Yogi" by Paramahansa Yogananda
- "Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism" by Chögyam Trungpa
- "Be Here Now" by Baba Ram Dass

Monday, July 9, 2012

Yesterday Summer - Today Autumn

...feels like that anyway...
1 hour of grazing and 30min longreining.
After giving Milva a few days break I started her slowly again today. We started with lots of scratches after taking her in to the ridinghouse - it rained all day (again). Then we slowly started with some sideways and two lay downs. Today she didn´t hesitate when I asked her to lay down and instead followed my suggestion immediately. While she was laying down I fed her cookies and when she stood up by herself I stopped then I asked her one more time to lay down while I sat on the floor and she laid down again :)). "Braves Mäderl" - like my Dad says.
We finished our session with longreining from z5 with lots of transistions and change of direction while circling - turning away from me.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

The Three Musketeers

protecting the little one in the middle

Orkan, Paulina, Milva

                                             Tinka and Bea

Anita took some pics when Bea joined our herd. Tinka became friends with Bea immediately but the other three are more suspicious. Those three are so tight and it´s always hard for a new horse to be allowed in their little group.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Friday & Saturday

Papa hanging out with Milva

Papa, Marie, Anita & Lilla Prinsen

                                               Milva sharing hay with Anita

My Papa just left and is on his way back to Austria again. Talking about a short visit. His older cat back home hasn´t been eaten well since he left and is looking for him everywhere so of course he got concerned and wanted to leave earlier as planed. Understandable though.
At least he got to meet Milva and got to see how we live now.
We are planing on going down to Austria in autumn for a visit. It really is not that far if you think about it.
A new horse moved into our turnout stable this Thursday. Because of my Papa´s visit I forgot to mention it. It´s a huge swedish halfblood mare called Bea and with her comes a super nice owner - Marie. I totally like Marie. We had already "fika" - swedish word for coffe & cake twice and we went together with Johan to pick strawberries.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Family Visit

My 74 year old Dad drove all the way up from Austria for a weekend trip.
Family time this weekend.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

WOOOHOOOO - HUGE Present From The US :)))

my very dear friend Janine, check out her blog sent me a huge gift!!
The original Colt Start DVD & Rider Biomechanics! How lucky am I to have such awesome friends!
I told Janine a while ago that I would take some extra shifts after my holiday to order the new DVDs, guess I don´t need to anymore!

Taming and starting horses is the foundation of horsemanship as a whole. As Pat says, make the first ride as if he's been ridden a thousand times... and ride your horse for the thousandth time as though it was his first. Getting the smallest details right is critical to becoming a horseman.

Taming and starting colts shows you where you fall short quicker than perhaps any other stage you go through with your horse. Now, for the first time, Pat's renowned step-by-step young horse development program is available for at-home study and self-development support for any serious horseman.

Runtime: 9 hours, 10 minutes

Colt Starting Segments include:

The Formula:
• Accept the Human
(as a friend and a leader)
• Accept the Saddle
(placement and wearing it)
• Accept the Rider
(as passenger then guider)
• Accept the Bit
(wearing, communicating)

The Basics:
• Confidence and Respect
• When to Quit
• Haltering
• Yielding
• Horsenality
• Bareback mounting
• Saddling
• Driving
• Saddle Horses
• Stepping On
• Passenger Lessons
• First Rides
• Handling Feet
• Preparing for Tying
• Guiding
• Riding Outside
• Gait Transitions
• Accepting the Bit

Rider Biomechanics with Colleen Kelly and Linda Parelli

Parelli is excited to bring you the work of Colleen Kelly, a talented biomechanics scientist who is also a multi-discipline rider, performance coach and retired Grand Prix judge.

This 2-DVD set will teach you the essential basics of rider biomechanics and natural riding including achieving the most balanced seat, posture and stirrup length.

You'll also learn the startling truth about why your horse goes crooked, and then watch Colleen coach students (including Linda Parelli) through exercises to address a wide variety of essential topics from straightness to circles and half halts to corners. Not only does Colleen make the technicalities of rider biomechanics really simple to understand, but she helps you visualize good habits for posture and communication. No doubt, you will be itching to race out to your horse and try it for yourself.

Rider Biomechanics segments include:

  • Naturally secure seat and position!
    Balanced position - the keys to confidence
  • Natural rider balance!
    Using your seat and position for straightness, circles and transitions
  • Natural rhythm and timing!
    Seat and position for rhythm, sitting trot, canter and jumping
  • Natural Finesse!
    Using your seat and position for laterals and jumping

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Just Saying.....;)

that´s for you Ulrika...

Monday, July 2, 2012

Assisting Ulrika :))) - YEAH!!!

On the 2nd and 3rd of August I will be at , see picture above, assissting Ulrika when and guests are coming to teach her theatergroup - same group that will be at the Circus 2015.
What an awesome oppurtunity!!

Circusproject 2013

My friend Ulrika is working on a big project for 2013 which includes a 5* Parelli Instructor and - JoAnna Mendl Shaw.
For more information please contact Ulrika.

It´s gonna be a fun year for Milva and me - Circus and Neumuenster after :).

Sunday, July 1, 2012

The Road Less Traveled by M. Scott Peck, M.D.

"Not just a book but a spontaneous act of generosity."

“The Road Less Traveled” (RLT), by M. Scott Peck, has sold more than 7 million copies and spent at least 598 weeks on bestseller lists. The book’s first words are “Life is difficult,” and its premise is that most of our unhappiness in life is the result of having attempted to avoid the legitimate suffering or pain (sustained effort, discipline, self denial) required to face and solve life’s problems.
Peck postulates that solving one’s problems requires discipline and that four tools of discipline are essential.

Quotes out of the book:

Life is difficult, mainly because the process of confronting and solving problems is painful. The benefit that results may be pleasurable but the process is painful. And since life poses an endless series of problems, life can be painful.
Yet it is this process of meeting and solving problems that gives life its meaning. Problems are the cutting edge between failure and success.
Fearing the pain, most of us attempt to avoid problems rather than meet them head on. We procrastinate, hoping they will go away. We ignore them, forget them, pretend they do not exist. We even take drugs to assist us in ignoring them, so that by deadening ourselves to the pain we can ignore the problem that causes it. We attempt to get out of our problems rather than suffering through them.
The key to learning to deal constructively with our problems lies in a system of discipline comprised of four tools.

1. Delaying gratification: Scheduling the pain and pleasures of life so as to enhance the pleasure by meeting and experiencing the pain first and getting it over with
2. Acceptance of responsibility
3. Dedication to truth
4. Balance

Good discipline takes time to think through the appropriate form. Often when we become aware of a problem in our personal lives, it so discomforts us that we demand an immediate solution and are not willing to tolerate our discomfort long enough to analyze it.
Problems do not go away. They must be worked through or they remain, forever a barrier to the growth and development of the spirit.
To willingly confront a problem early, before we are forced to by circumstances, means we are putting aside something pleasant or less painful for something more painful. It is choosing suffering now in hopes of future gratification, rather than choosing to continue present gratification hoping future suffering will not be necessary.
If we have a deep internal sense of security, a deep sense of our own value, of consistent safety in the world, we can delay gratification, secure in the knowledge that the opportunity for gratification, like home and parents, is always there, available when needed.
Dedication to reality
Truth is reality. That which is false is unreality. The more clearly we see the world, the better equipped we are to deal with it. Only a fortunate few continue until the moment of death exploring the mystery of reality, ever enlarging, refining, and redefining their understanding of the world and what is true. Most feel that their maps are complete and accurate. Even if this were once true, the world is forever changing and we must continually revise our views. Yet it is so very difficult to give up our maps, behaviors that have worked in the past, that we have been positively rewarded/reinforced for continuing to use them.
Mental health is the on-going process of dedication to reality at all costs. We must always hold the truth to be more important, more vital to our self-interest, than our comfort. Life must be a continuous and never-ending stringent self-examination. We only know the world through our relationship to it. Therefore, to know the world we examine both it and the examiner.
The only way we can be certain that our map of reality is valid is to expose it to the criticism and challenge of other mapmakers. In other words, live a life willing to be personally challenged. Entering psychotherapy is an act of the greatest courage because by doing so we deliberately lay ourselves open to the deepest challenge from another human being.
A life of total honesty (clearly seeing reality, the better to deal with the world, for how can we make correct decisions/choices based on faulty data?) demands that we seek out opportunities to risk openness. (NOT to run from problems, though that is a very natural human reaction to what is perceived—and sometimes intended—as an attack, yet it also is an opportunity to test—not defend—our maps. “How we perceive the problem is often part of the problem.” If we see it as an opportunity to grow, we will learn. If we see it as an attack to be defeated, we regress. Value the differences!)
Insofar as the nature of the challenge is legitimate (and it usually is) lying (even white lies), is an attempt to circumvent legitimate suffering (the pain of confronting and solving a problem/issue, as growth can be painful). Circumvention raises the issue of shortcuts. It is okay to avail yourself of any legitimate shortcuts to growth; the key is the legitimacy, and only stringent, honest, self-examination holds the answer.

Withholding truth
Yet truth/reality can hurt, wound, even destroy. Selective withholding, the suppression of opinions, feelings, ideas, knowledge may be necessary IF it serves a higher principle.

1. Never speak falsehoods, and bear in mind that the act of withholding the truth is always potentially a lie that requires proper weight/attention be given to the significant moral decision involved.
2. The decision to withhold the truth should not be based on personal needs, such as a need for power, a need to be liked, or a need to protect one’s map from challenge.
3. Withholding should be based entirely on the needs of the person from whom the truth is being withheld.
4. Assessment of the needs of another is an act of responsibility that can be executed wisely only when one operates out of genuine love.
5. The primary factor in the assessment of the other’s needs should be that person’s capacity to use the truth for his or her personal growth.

Honesty requires self-discipline, which is why many people opt for a life of very limited honesty/openness, hiding themselves and their maps from the world. It is easier. Yet the rewards of the difficult life of dedication to truth are more than commensurate with the demands. By virtue of the fact that their maps are continually being challenged, open people are continually growing people. Through their openness they can establish and maintain intimate relationships far more effectively than closed people. They are sources of illumination and clarification; they are totally free to be. They are not burdened by the need to hide. They do not have to construct new lies to hide old ones. They waste no effort covering tracks or maintaining disguises. Ultimately, the energy required for the discipline of honesty is far less than the energy required for secretiveness. The more honest one is, the easier it is to continue being honest. Just as the more lies one has told, the more necessary it is to lie again. Through the exercise of their courage to live in the open, they become free from fear.
To be organized and efficient, to live wisely, we must daily delay gratification and keep an eye on the future. Yet to live joyously we must also possess the capacity to live in the present and act spontaneously. This requires flexibility and judgment, our discipline must be disciplined.
Growth is change and frequently requires giving up something, which is painful. If we are to grow we must continually give up parts of ourselves, sacrificing what we are today for what we can be tomorrow. For a relationship to grow, we must give up parts of ourselves.
The only alternative to this giving up is to not grow. Strange as it may seem, most people choose this alternative. Yet, it is in the giving up of self that human beings can find the most ecstatic, lasting, solid, durable joy of life, the joyful sense of rebirth that accompanies the successful transition into greater maturity.
Bracketing is balancing the need for stability and the assertion of the self with the need for new knowledge and greater understanding by temporarily giving up oneself, putting oneself aside, so as to make room for the incorporation of new material into the self.
Each time you approach a new object, person, or event there is a tendency to let your present needs, past experiences, or expectations for the future determine what you see. If you are to appreciate the uniqueness of any datum, you must be sufficiently aware of your preconceived ideas and characteristic emotional distortions to bracket them long enough to welcome strangeness and novelty into your perceptual world. This discipline of bracketing, compensating, or self-silencing, requires sophisticated self-knowledge and courageous honesty. Otherwise each present moment is just a repetition of something already seen or experienced.
Self-discipline is a self-enlarging process. For all that is given up, even more is gained.

Throughout the whole of life one must continue to learn to live, and what will amaze you even more, throughout life one must learn to die." - Seneca

Discipline is a system to deal constructively with the pain of problem solving. The strength and energy to use these techniques of discipline is provided by love.