The Art of Natural Dressage

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2009 10:39 pm 
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:kiss: hi there Helene, i am so happy that you are liking this. many people think that i am too free with my children because they are not clean and in the house. people nearly die when they turn up and the baby is under Danni's legs with a bread stick saying "up, up, up" and lifting his leg. i HAVE to video this, as it is beautiful. but i want it to stay candid, so i dont ever want to have it as a set up. so i just will have to wait till i happen to have my camera with me while it is happening ;) ;)

i made sure that my kids learn cause and effect. like with the mental cat we have (she was abused and dumped at our house, and she is the most strange animal i have ever met. :love: :funny: ) dylan has to ask to touch her, and if her body language goes up, and he does not listen she will give him a little scratch. i am happy for this, (even though it is seen as bad from other over protective mothers) because he learns cause and effect, and the very next time he approaches her, he does it with gentle asking body language. she is training him. actually i think she treats him like one of her kittens. she does no let anyone else touch her like he does.

i have had horrified mothers let me know that they do not agree. but you kn ow what. my son can read a dog, cat, horse, goat, pig, etc. and if he ever is faced with a situation where the animal is letting them know clearly that they dont want the situation, then he will be the one that does not get hurt. :yes: :yes: :yes: how many kids get bitten by dogs because they do not listen to the cues. :huh: i think in protectiveness, mothers have gone too far. :sad: but i can understand why, because my heart is in my mouth ALOT with my kids. they are frightning!!!!!! but i am happy with how they are growing up. :D :D :D :D and i am glad that i can offer them this. :yes: :yes:

it sounds to me that you will be an excellent mother :D :kiss: :friends: :love: i am glad that you are going to have them around animals, it really is great for them :applause: :applause: :applause: and i cant wait to see how it all goes. :love: so how far pregnant are you?

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2009 5:02 am 
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Location: Washington, Maine USA
jessplum wrote:

i have had horrified mothers let me know that they do not agree. but you kn ow what. my son can read a dog, cat, horse, goat, pig, etc. and if he ever is faced with a situation where the animal is letting them know clearly that they dont want the situation, then he will be the one that does not get hurt. :yes: :yes: :yes: how many kids get bitten by dogs because they do not listen to the cues. :huh: i think in protectiveness, mothers have gone too far. :sad: but i can understand why, because my heart is in my mouth ALOT with my kids. they are frightning!!!!!! but i am happy with how they are growing up. :D :D :D :D and i am glad that i can offer them this. :yes: :yes:



Oh Jess! Wonderful philosophy!

That to me is the best education you can give them! My mother was like that, let me explore to my hearts content, rarely said 'No you can't do that!" and I am SOOOOO grateful that she did that cuz I grew up to be confident and capable and pretty fearless...well until I turned 50 that is!!!

A favorite quote of mine:

"Let her swim, Climb mountain peaks, Pilot airplanes, Battle against the elements, Take risks, Go out for adventure,

and she will not feel before the world...timidity."


Simone de Beauvoir

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2009 10:52 am 
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absolutely beautiful Brenda :love: :kiss: it is so nice to have a great supportive group of friends. i do get alot of negative attitudes from people that think that being a good mum is about having the house spotless and the meals on the table on time, and the kids all homeworked, washed and playing quietly in their bedrooms.

my house is rarely ever clean. i am just about the worst house cleaner around, i do try, but i am just no good at maintenence ;) my cooking leaves alot to be desired, unless you like mushrooms and salad with loads of cheese. :ieks: and of course potato!! 8) my kids wash regularly, but you could never tell :blush: :funny: and they are NEVER quiet! :roll: i dont believe in homework for children, they should be playing as far as i am concerned unless they were lazy with their school work for the day, but no set homework (my kids think this is pretty good :thumleft: ) and i can barely get them into the house even for bed!!! i think they would sleep in the dogs kennels if they were alowed :funny: :funny: :funny: but that was how i lived. i grew up with evey stray pet. i had abandoned baby animals in the bed with me, (and never squashed them) i used to sneek out and sleep in the paddock with the herd. even at school it would be no suprise if there was am injured animal asleep in my shirt. i was always with them, and i cant imagine it any other way!

my grand father lived off the land. and he was very inspiring. he was so kind, and even thought there were times that called for him to have to do hard things, he was always respectful of the animal and as kind as possible. he was always torn apart by the misstreatment of farmers animals. he loved his farm, and especially his horses. he made sure that he was set up at home to die by his window watching his horses. he had cancer, but he went watching the young horse that he bred for me. he was a great man!!!! :love: :love: :love: :love:

anyway. i will have to get somevideos of the kids and wha tthey have been doing lately with the animals. i feel slack as i have not posted about them lately. so i will do my best. :f: :f: :f: :f: :love: :love: :kiss: :kiss:

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 5:21 am 
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hi there. i am posting a video here that i think shows natural bodylanguage and communication between two babies. Dylan is just under two, and the baby lamb was born the night befor, this was taken the next morning.if you want to know why i have a little baby lamb, i have written about it in my diary. tell me what you think and what you see. i love hearing what others have noticed, because maybe i have just read into it what i want to.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oYOUlDsBCko

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just keep swimming, quote from nemo!:)
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 7:53 am 

Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 6:50 am
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Well, another wonderful thread that I hadn't read before!

Jess, Dylan and the lamb is extraordinary. When I think of some of the 2 year olds I see around here - bashing their toys against the ground, etc. and generally not being able to bring their energy down at all, seeing Dylan in this video seems amazing. He seemed to know just how to touch and move away to make the lamb interested. I was really awed by the way he tried to give the lamb its bottle - who taught him that? He didn't just try to poke the bottle at the lamb, he knew to tilt its head back. He has been watching you and absorbing all that he sees, I guess. Lucky child!

My daughter is 13, and was a bit interested horses. (Not quite like I was when I was a kid, though...) But she has always loved animals of all kinds. She wanted to have riding lessons - but I think in reality, what she really wanted was a horse that she could build a relationship with and a horse to love, rather than a horse to ride. Her 'lessons' almost put both of us off completely! She spent 30 minutes being told to kick and whip a horse 'to make it do what she told it to do'!!!! What a harrowing experience. She didn't want to ride at all any more. She was happy 'just sitting' on a horse and walking around where it wanted to go (sounds familiar to me now!) but instead she was pushed to 'be in control' and 'not let the horse get away with not listening'.

Thank goodness we found Honey and she has been able to build the kind of relationship she wants. Based on hugs and scratches and playing together, rather than pushing and dominating. I think that most kids just know that that approach isn't right and will never get them to what they really want.

I have a theory that being raised with cats around predisposes one to this type of equal relationship (if you develop a relationship with a cat). With a cat, there is no force - they are interested in you on their terms, and for the most part, on their terms only. They are unlikely to be bribed or coerced in any way. They will play with you when they want to play, they will sit with you when they want company and strokes, but you can't force them to do any of these things. My cats have been very good preparation for working in an AND way with Honey!

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The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain. - Khalil Gibran


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 8:46 am 

Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2008 9:58 pm
Posts: 1620
Location: Western Cape, South Africa
Oh Jessy. What a way to start my day!
I don't know who gets the most cute vote, Dylan or the lamb. (I would love to know what Dylan is saying (or babbling?))
It reminds me so much of my middle child who would climb in the dog cushion with my then german shepherd with a bottle. The dog would be long gone and I would find him snoring away in the dog bed!!!!!
Every child should be able to experience things like this.
Thank you for sharing

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 9:50 am 

Joined: Tue May 19, 2009 8:29 pm
Posts: 233
Location: Kuusamo, Finland
Jess, that video is amazing! My jaw hit the floor in the first few seconds when Dylan used his own slight body movements to encourage the lamb to get up. The more I think about it the more I realise that I would have used my hands if i thought of gesturing at all, which would have made no sense to the lamb at all, him not having hands. Wow. You have a very tallented little boy there.

My two and half year old has extremely high energy and does't bring it down around animals, infact it is not a skill she has learnt yet at all. The dog loves her when she is in playful mood but can't tollerate her when she wants to just sit, the cat always runs in the opposite direction when he hears her coming. Around the horses it wories me. Although they seem ok with her and she loves feeding them she is much too pushy and demanding with them, and wouldn't think twice of smacking them on the nose or running around behind them and one day I worry she is going to spook them and get in trouble. She is also a panicker so would just run screaming in a crisis so it seems that not all children have this ability, it is a gift to have it naturaly but it can be learnt when we get old enough to be conscious of our own energies.

My younger child however, seems much more calm around horses. He doesn't often try to touch them and when he does it is only gently. he is much more content to watch them in wonder. that said, he is only 10 months old so we will see what happens when he starts to walk.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 11:48 am 
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oh thankyou so much for watching.

hi Shannan, Morgan (sorry name forgetting) and Heather

i feel very fortunate that i have been raised by very animal connected people. between my mum and my grandfather, i was lucky enough to learn to allow children a certain amount of freedom. it was hard watching him try to feed the little baby, even thgough he was being gentle. he has been watching me, and thought that he was being sneeky and i could not see him behind the camera!! :D :D cheeky little monkey! i was ready to jump up at any given moment to rescue the baby, but i never had to. he was great. he has decided that the baby is his baby, after this he was actually washing her bottom with a wipe. it was so cute!!! he is so attached, that when he was going out with nanna, who he normally will run me over to get to, he refused to leave, and had to be dragged away screaming! even going to bed, he wanted to sleep with the baby.

i know what you are saying shannan about riding lessons. i hate most riding schools. it was hard to come on this site and say that i had one, because i know the reputation that they have. that is why i made sure that mine was aimed in a totally different direction. how sad that your daughter had to be put through that by her instructor. it is so hard on a child, because inside they know that it is not right, but they are doing what they are tought they are supposed to do. all of the students that i end up with are rejects from pony club and riding school, because they were ready to give up rather than have to do that any more. i am so glad that you have found honey. i will have to check out your diary when i have the chance to meet honey and hear about your daughter.

hi there Morgan. hahahah, i had to put music on there, even though it was so cute what he was saying, (none of it in a recognisable ;language, just incoherant babble) because i did not realise that i sounded so stupid when i was holding the camera. i could not handle the horrid sound of my voice!!! :funny: :blush: :funny: :blush: i tried editing it, but it just ended up looking strange. i will try to make a little one and pop it on photobucket with his talking on it, but not my voice! :funny: oh, i love your dog bed story :applause: :applause: it is sooo cute.

hi Heather. i am so glad you noticed the bodylanguage. he actually is learning to use his energy. it is a big focus of mine, and i think he is learning it well. i am not even having to teach it to him, because really, how do you teach a todler????? but he just watches and feels and pickes up everything.

you mentioned your little one, it is interesting, because my middle son is very similar. he has energy that he does not know how to control. horses find him too intense and most animals think that he is too much. but he is GREAT with dogs, and he is a fantastic rider. you would think that because he is an energy child, he would be too hot, but no. he has such clear strong energy, that he does not even need to ask, the horse already is doing. they read him when he is riding and he simply has to look in a direction, and they are doing it. tiny little thing, at four, he cantered off and jumped over a little cavaletti!!!! i nearly had a heart attack, but he was pretty impressed. he has awesome ballance, but it was his energy. he was oon a 13.2 hh pony, and he could not even reach past the saddle flaps, yet the pony just did what he was thinking about, then pulled straight up, even though Lachlan was holding the saddle, and had no reins. ooooooooh, i cannot tell you what i think you are in for. they are scary these energy children. but dont worry. you will end up getting her a pony to match her strength. lachlan has the stubborn little ponies that knowone else can get to move, or that are the ones that just take the reins and run. well with him, they are wonderful. but i do not put him on the super sensitive horses. dont worry, one day you will go out and she will be magic with a pony that knowone thought had any life in them.

it is funny, because my oldest child is so super in tune with the horse on the ground, he feels what they are feeling, and he is so emotionally in tune!!!! wild birds have sat with him, and i am not kidding. even the most frightened rescue will want to stand with him. but he is not a great rider. he feels what the horse feels, and knows too much i spose. every moment of nervouseness that a horse feels, he feels and it makes him afraid. i understand this. i take everything the slow way!! :D

so i have one super sensitive to the extream, one hyper energy to the extream, and i think i have one that is a total split between the two. pretty cool. i think the thing is, to find their strength. if it is not on the ground, or maybe with horses. their strength maybe with dogs, cats, or even be with amazing animals as a specialist. you never know. :love: :love: children are fascinating!!!

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 12:10 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2008 9:58 pm
Posts: 1620
Location: Western Cape, South Africa
Jessy,
It's Annette (but most everyone here calls me Morgan and as I love him so much it doesn't matter!!!).
My youngest child Kieran was diagnosed at 3 with severe "apraxia of speech". He spent 3 years in speech therapy 3 times a week....phew.
The apraxia doesn't ever go away but today he has a vocabulary a year ahead of his peers and if you met him you would never know unless you try to get him to say some ridiculously long word with multiple syllables!!!!
The point of me telling you this is that I love to see litte kids trying to communicate (before they can talk properly) and whilst you see babble and hand motions, I see so much more.
At some point he looked like he was telling you he wanted the lamb to go round in circles. The body communication is really good with him and I am sure he gets most of his needs met by his family from just this even though you are not aware of it. An older kid might tell the lamb "get up" of whatever, he just does it with his body. I see many kids that talked early (including my eldest son) who is terrible at reading or portraying body language and small nuances that my youngest who relied so long on this to communicate finds so natural.
He is the one who always wants to be with Morgan and can get him to do almost anything.........for him it is total freedom. He doesn't have to rely on his brain having to work his mouth and can hum or sing and just be and Morgan understands him instantly.
I think Dylan is going to be a great nurturer of animals.......just like his MUM!!! :f:

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Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans. - John Lennon


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 12:32 pm 
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oh thankyou Annette. i think he is brilliant, and it is so nice to hear other people see his cleverness too. it is hard because somethimes i wonder if i see more than is there, but really, i am glad if i do, because that is not really that bad huh.

he was asking the little lamb to get up and play like the other little lambs. it was so cute. he does babble in a language that is incoheirant to others when with animals, i think he talks on a different level to them. i had alot of specah problems, and so does jordan. but dylan is like a genius!! i think he will be great with language. apparently when they can come up with their own language, they will succeed at learning other ones.

it is lovely to hear about your child. i am glad that you have over come difficulties. see i think that this is how brillinace is brought about. when things are easy, there is no need to exert yourself, but when there are difficulties, you have to work so hard to get there, then you become better than ever!

it is so wonderful and proud for me to have other people notice the little movements and bodylanguage and energy that he uses. thankyou for this. :love: :love: :love: :love: what a supportive place. :love: :kiss:

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just keep swimming, quote from nemo!:)
love jessy


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 12:50 pm 

Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 6:50 am
Posts: 321
It great to hear everyone's stories! Keep them coming!

I couldn't decide whether to post these photos in my diary, or put them here. Going back to the original post, I think they probably belong here. (But feel free to move them where ever it is most appropriate!)

Here are some photos of my daughter in the field with a friend's new foals (and mares)... I have so many wonderful photos from on that day.... here are a couple of them.

One of the foals, Victoria, really took a shine to my daughter:
Image

Image

Image

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A now retired brood mare:

Image

A couple of the 2 year olds:

Image

Image

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 1:07 pm 
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your daughter is so beautiful!!! you can see her inner beauty as well. she reminds me of my son, he has the same gentle touch. those photos are just divine. :kiss: it is perfect to have them here, as i think they show exactly how intense the beautiful relationship between child and horse can be. :love: :love: :f: :f: :f: :f: thankyou for sharing these photos. they truely show deep love on both sides. :f: :f: :clap:

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 3:56 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2008 9:58 pm
Posts: 1620
Location: Western Cape, South Africa
Beautiful, both daughter and horses!
I really, really like the second one. I hope you have some of these up somewhere....but knowing kids this age she probably hates having anyone else see them!!! lol!!!!
Thank you so much for sharing these.........

oh this thread just warms the heart!!!!! :kiss:

(If only all our kids could be this angelic all the time :yes: )

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Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans. - John Lennon


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 6:08 pm 

Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 6:50 am
Posts: 321
Thanks Jessie and Annette! I will pass the compliments on to my daughter (who, yes, will be embarrassed!)

The second one is definitely my favourite also, with the third one - of the "horse whispering" is a close runner up. She had only just met this foal about 15 minutes or so before these photos were taken, but they just 'clicked' together.

It was seeing her with these horses that made me realise just what she was looking for in horses - and it certainly wasn't bossing them about from on their backs. ;)

Honey is sweet, and just the kind of horse she can love and stroke and take on walks to eat sweeter grass, etc. If we decide we do want to ride, I think I will look for a very laid back, road safe, sturdy, older horse for her. Then we can amble along together for picnics and things.

I agree, though, Annette - this thread is like a tonic you can take every time you feel a bit jaded about the world and you need to be reminded that there are also wonderful things out there that happen all the time. :)

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:09 am 

Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 10:51 pm
Posts: 9
Hi,
reading these posts transported me back to my childhood, I clearly remember at one point actually thinking I was a horse, not because I was around them all the time but because I wanted to be and I found the smell of horse so familiar, I would spend hours sitting on a wall near my house watching the horses and I clearly remember them spending time with me, I wasnt allowed to go into the paddock so I would wait for them to come to me and they always did and for as long as I was there so where they, I dont remember doing very much but just sort of being with them. When I got a little older I used to ride a pony that belonged to someone and was left in a remote place on its own up in the ,mountains, I hadnt had any riding lessons at this point but I never seemed to have any problems riding him or getting him to understand what I wanted and where I thought we should be heading (all this with no tack) it wasnt untill much later when I started to 'learn to ride' and had riding lessons that things started to get confusing to me - I remember thinking this is all wrong but being a child you trust adults to know the right way! so sadly I wenr from just thinking what I wanted and pressing with 2 fingers on his neck to move him over to all the usual cluter that comes with the traditional method of being with and riding horses.

Another children and horse story a freind told me was during her childhood growing up on a dude ranch in the states, she had a pony who she describes as really nasty who appeard to hate children and attacked them on sight - one day she came home from school to find her father had given her away to a local riding for disabled children, she was quite horrified at the time - but was later invited with her family to see him at his new home, apparently he was the centres star, he was gentle with the children and so kind and considerate - a model pony! all this with no extra training or special orientation!


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