Sunday, September 18, 2011

Saturday started out misty, rainy and gross, but cleared out by the afternoon for a beautiful day. Faith stayed busy working Jazzy (after about 7 inches of rain she finally started feeling better) both on the ground and under saddle. She also rode her in with other horses (no problems here! no racing or rushing....perfectly happy to be her own horse in her own space) and we gave her a bath when done with it all. I was really excited to see them doing so well. I moved them out of the roundpen and turned them loose in the arena for their ride and with the addition of Faith carrying a crop to help keep her going, had a beautiful ride of walk/trot. I really hope we can keep the COPD in remission and keep working her. She is probably in the best shape both physically and mentally since I got her. She is gorgeous and sweet under saddle and I would love to be able to keep working her and take her to some shows next year.

After finished with lessons, working horses and chores, we decided to take advantage of it and take a break from arenas and training and go for a trail ride. While at first I wasn't really up for it, Faith talked me into it and I was really glad she did. I needed some time out just enjoying the ride. I even switched from Payton to MC (Heather's TWH pony who is super cool and a blast to ride) after the trail and Faith and I had "pony wars" in the hay field. Pony wars is just a fun race Heather and I do on occasion, but finally felt Faith was a good enough rider to enjoy some silly time as well. It consists of bringing the ponies around to the bottom of a hill and having them canter up it side by side then circling and going straight down the flat part of the field at a full gallop as fast you can and see who wins. Billy is super fast and competitive and Faith won every time but once when I finally got MC to really get going. So much fun!!! And so cool to look over and see your daughter giggling and galloping full speed past you.

I let Faith and Billy lead the way!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Showdown at Rarity

Saturday was the horse show at Rarity Bay. We had a good size turnout of our show team and several "first timers" who did great their first time out. We had 7 horses and 9 students. All of the team came with their game faces on and we brought home tons of ribbons.
Lora Grace gets Pre-show Coaching
Going over patterns with Rebecca and Payton....he's a good listener!
One last check over before Rebecca and Payton's class
Part of the team hangs out in between classes
Dwight showed for the first time. He hasn't had a lot of time to practice so I originally signed him up just for Leadline, but he impressed me with his control of Chip (Billy's dance card was full) and I let him enter Walk Only too. He did great and looked good out there! As my mom says, he makes one good looking cowboy! 
Handsome Cowboy
Daddy made his show debut as well! Good job Dad!

Flirting with the Judge always helps

Looking good in Blue!

Faith also competed. Due to the craptastic footing we decided to just do flat classes. Faith did English Halter (1st) Showmanship (3rd) Youth 12 and Under Hunter (1st) and Open Equitation (2nd). I was really proud of her Equitation class, she got both her canter leads, really good trot work, even when they made her drop her stirrups, and just had a really great ride!

Concentrating hard
Lookin' Good! stirrups
Reverse at the sit trot with no stirrups
Posting trot with no stirrups
Woohoo!!! We got the right lead canter!
You go girl!
She worked hard for that ribbon!
I was super proud of two of my students, Lora Grace and McKenzie. Lora Grace and her horse Larkin have really come together as a team and are doing great. They did Western Halter (2nd) Showmanship (1st) Go As You Please (4th) Open Ranch Riding (2nd) and Horsemanship (2nd). They rocked out their extended canter and she nailed her simple lead change and all her walk to canter transitions. I was jumping up and down screaming and clapping at the end of their classes. They have worked really hard and it definitely showed. We are really looking forward to her debut on the ARHA circuit this November.

McKenzie did her first show with the team. Despite being nervous, she did great. We just did a few classes so she could get used to everything. She used Payton and it was his first show as well. They did Showmanship (4th) In Hand Trail (2nd) and Green Ranch Riding (3rd).
Opening the gate
Sidepass pole
What tarp? Piece of cake!

All in all it was a great day for the team. All the horses loaded and traveled great and we had no major drama. Unfortunately due to the atrocious footing we will not be back next year. It's got a great class list but they always have the same people come as well and the kids get no new competition. There are several shows we did this year that are closer and have better facilities and competition.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

A Few More Pics

Here are a few more pictures of Faith from the Stonegate ETHJA Show that I received today from Keith Mooney Photography. Go Keith! They turned out beautiful!