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Showing posts from September, 2018

NER United States Pony Club Show Jump Rally - July 20, 2019

Ellie and I had SO MUCH FUN at our first Pony Club jump rally this year.  We drove up to Clay Brook Farms, where we had our D-1/D-2 rating, in order to compete for the day on July 20.  This happened to be one of the hottest days of summer, so the organizers modified the schedule a bit.  Instead of doing two rounds in the morning and one in the afternoon, we all did just two rounds (with a ten-minute break in between) all in the morning, so we were done and headed out just after lunch.  
Everything ran so smoothly despite the condensed format.  We were able to do our formal inspections right before we mounted up, and we were all encouraged to limit our warm up time.  We were not allowed to wear jackets, and there was a TON of horse water and ice cold human water available at numerous stations around the field.
I was competing with Epona Pony Club, but I was again put on a Horsemaster team with two other adults from Foxcroft Pony Club, Angie and Beth, the two riders I competed with at the…

State of Maine Dressage Association Schooling Show - September 16, 2018

Ellie and I competed in our fourth and final SMDA dressage show this past Saturday.  I will be honest, I choose to do this fourth one in order to gain our final year end scores, so I choose to ride Intro B and C again.  After showing at Training 1 back in August, I knew I wanted to move up, but I also realized that if I just did one more SMDA show at Intro, I could be eligible for awards.  It seemed silly not to qualify, as we have worked too hard this year not to.  But I also wanted the opportunity to ride Training 1 again in a show environment, instead of having to wait until next spring.

Because SMDA does not allow riders to compete at Training level if they are also riding Intro A or B, I had to asked permission to ride "HC", which is an abbreviation for hor concours, the French phrase that means riding without actually competing for a ribbon.  Thankfully, the board gave me permission and I signed up for all three tests.  It did not seem like two little Intro test and Tra…

There's Your Sign

A year ago, in August of 2017, I contacted the Stable Sign Co. about creating a sign for our barn.  Amelia was AWESOME about helping me come up with the right design, look, and size.  She is located in NH, about two hours away, in an area I don't frequent, so at first we discussed shipping and then she offered to meet me in Maine (they were visiting family for Labor Day weekend).

The sign is GORGEOUS.  I have had it stashed in my basement for a FULL YEAR, which has made me super sad haha.  My husband wanted to have our barn painted before we hung the sign (fair enough).  I happily bought ten gallons of red stain in April.  And then my husband stalled and stalled about getting started on the actual task of painting.  Once we had time in the summer, he claimed it was too hot (fair enough).

But FINALLY he started painting.  Even though I am obviously capable of painting, I know my husband well enough to know I would never "do it right", so I just let him be in charge LOL!  I …

Half Halts are Life

Ellie and I squeaked out a weekly dressage lesson every week this summer, including two weeks where we are able to get a jumping lesson in as well.  This was one of my biggest goals this year, to spend time and money on our education.  I feel fairly confident that I can bring along a horse myself, having successfully started three Standardbreds under saddle on my own, but I also fully admit and embrace that I am an adult amateur and have my own weaknesses that can negatively influence my horse.

Knowing that this mare is potentially more talented than any other horse I have owned, I definitely wanted help.  I wanted to have eyes on the ground.  I wanted to have someone who would push us but also make it fun.  To this end, I am super happy with my choice to lesson with Beth, as she has been EXACTLY what I need as a rider.  We have had really awesome lessons, and I always leave feeling as though I have learned something, possibly added a tool to my toolbox, and she always give us homework…

Saddle Fitting Appointment (Finally!)

Phew, it has been a crazy few weeks with school starting and my entire daily schedule changing entirely!  There is so much to write and no time to just sit down and do so.  

The biggest recent event is that after waiting on the saddle brand's rep/fitter since July, I finally gave up on that (she did schedule something for the end of August to only cancel on me late the night before....grrr!).  I contacted Nancy Sherick, who has fit saddles for me before years ago, and she came right out on September 4.  Now that is good customer service!  I will never bother to ask anyone else to fit my saddles from now on, that is for sure.  I figured Nancy would be too booked up or not come up here, but I was happily wrong!


I had a feeling that the wide tree was OK but the saddle just needed flocking up in the front. I also wasn't convinced the panels fit her just right but everything seemed so slightly off that I figured flocking could be the answer, not an entirely new saddle. I didn't q…