"Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby, to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion. It seizes a person whole and once it has done so, he/she will have to accept that his life will be radically changed." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A HT is in the near future.

It's pay day.  After all the bills are paid I'm cutting a check to Plantation.  Tyler and I are going to enter BNR on June 12.  :D  We haven't competed this year and I'm really looking forward to it.  I jumped him last week and he was great.  It had been awhile since we jumped and I couldn't tell.  My plan is to go out and have fun.  Plus, I need some confidence before I take Fred out.

The boys have been good the last few weeks.  Tyler and his buddy Archie went out for their first paperchase of the season last weekend.  Tyler was his usual self out there.  We had a blast.  Somewhere over the 10.5 miles, Tyler managed to pull off both front shoes.  Oopsie.  

The next day was Fred's dressage debut at Twin Brooks.  He did Training 1 and 2.  He earned a 59 and 61.  For our first time out, I was very happy with him. 

Tyler and Fred both had lessons with Sally last week, too.  Tyler was good for Melissa (thank goodness!)  Fred did well.  We would have done better had his rider been capable of looking through the turns way earlier and could steer.  I have major homework to do.

 Sally literally raised the bar and tested us.  It was fun!
 Yeah, I like this horse.
 Melissa makes Tyler look absolutely amazing.  He likes her! 
They be-bopped around with no problem.  I was grinning the entire time. 

I leave for Phoenix Thursday night and return Sunday at noon.  I'm going to IBM's Maximo enablement event.  It's the only time all of my co-workers are every in one place.  I'm looking forward to the reunion.

Next week I'm in Ann Arbor from Monday until Friday.  I haven't been on a plane in 3 months!  I hope I remember how to fly.  


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Away we go.

The boys have been on fairly good behavior over the last week.  I traveled to Long Island, NY for a few days last week and suffered major withdrawal from them.  I left Tuesday night after a nice lesson on Fred.  I drove directly to the barn from NY for a dressage lesson with Fred and Sarah.  

Friday the 13th was also my Mom's birthday.  Jenna organized a dinner at Penn National for us and our bff/adopted sister, Jackie.  It was fun! Jenna did a great job getting things together at the last minute as we didn't know things would fall into place.

 Me, Jackie, and Jenna
Dad and I trying to pick a winner.

Long Island wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.  I wanted to explore more but didn't have time to.  I did make it to two tack shops Thursday night.  Prices were a little steep but it was fun to visit and chat with the shop owners.  

One reason I stopped at the tack shops is that Fred is entered at the Twin Brooks dressage show on Sunday, May 22.  It will be our first competitive outing.  We'll be attempting the Training 1 and Training 2 tests. I did not have a white dressage saddle pad as Tyler goes in black and my tall boots had seen more events than they should have. I didn't purchase either item in NY.

LGress and I headed to Bit of Britain and Dover Saturday afternoon.  Lauren picked up brushing boots she won last year and bought herself a CO skull cap!  She rocks it.  I bought a white dressage pad for $15 and Fred's XC saddle pad.  His colors are now navy and sea blue.  Then we went to Dover where I bought the store.  Tall boots, XC boots, reins, lead rope, fly spray, liniment... and so on.   

 This is the consolidated pile.  Yikes.

Since Fred is competing soon, I thought he and Tyler should take a field trip.  The weather forecast was to be a washout, but we had a great ride at Stonewood Farms before a small storm rolled in.  Melissa was a last minute addition to the fun and I was happy to have her along.  She rode Tyler and I took Fred around.  Fred was just fine. 

Melissa's first ride on Tyler was a huge success!

Had a fun lesson with Cindy, Lauren, Jean, and Julie last night.  Well, there was a little issue with one fence last night.  Fred hung a leg and somehow we stayed balanced and upright. Thank you Tyler for teaching me that trick!  Of course the next time we jumped the fence Fred was not going to touch it!  We had a few extra feet to spare.  

I teach a few lessons tonight and the boys have a well deserved day off.  Tomorrow Fred heads to Sarah's with Paige and Bootz for a list minute tune up before Sunday. 

Monday, May 9, 2011

Spring is here and going too quickly!

The last week has been relatively calm with the boys.  The dentist did Fred's routine dental work but he needs sedation and the vet for his incisors.  Tyler was going to be a handful and after quick vote, he joined the sedation list.  

Fred and I had a spectacular lesson with Sally on Friday.  Here's proof:

Tyler has been a bit spunky lately.  His fitness level isn't what he thinks it is and something on the right side of his body seems a little tense.  He and Fred both have body work scheduled.  Hopefully the kinks can be worked out.  

Saturday was a lovely day spent with the boys in the morning and then at MCTA cheering Cindy and Lauren on in their novice divisions.  Both of them did very well.  I was a bit envious of them.  Soon enough Fred and I will be out there.  Tyler just isn't the right horse to compete at that level.  

On Sunday I helped Paige and Bootz at the Twin Brooks spring show.  Paige and Cindy have been working very hard and it paid off!  Paige easily rode Bootz around two courses.  It was the first time she jumped 9 fences together at a show.  It was great.  After that I visited the family for Mother's Day.  Tyler and I had a not so pleasant discussion during our ride.  He might hurt a little, but not enough to act the way he has been.  

I leave for a short business trip tomorrow night and will return on Friday.  It's been too long since I've been on the road and it will be a nice break.  

So yes, things have been relatively calm. 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Tyler returns to XC

A few pictures of Tyler's return to cross country.  He hadn't been out since Aiken.  The only issue we ran into was a lack of fitness.  That will change quickly.

 We were on a mission!
photo by Cindy Gilbert
 Novice ditch - no problem.  
photo by Cindy Gilbert 
He went charging at the Novice trakehner and only thought about reaching the other side.
photo by Steffanie Gieger
Coop near the end of the day.
photo by Cindy Gilbert

(PS - He will be available for lease at HVS in June.)