I have officially had my fill of “weekends at home”, which is good considering the next 6 weekends are already full. Ah, show season, you are glorious. I can’t wait to be bone-tired, sore all over, unsure of what day it is, and chafed in unmentionable places.
But this weekend was relatively chill. I somewhat serendipitously found myself at Ikea on Friday night (I sure know how to party) anyway, so I picked up 8 of the little green potties to use as rail raisers. They look like they will do the job just fine, and for a $50 investment and literally zero work, you can’t beat that.
On Saturday Hillary helped me set jumps, and I did a brief jump school with Henry. I kept the jumps a little lower than usual because the ground is getting a bit hard for my taste, and he was super good. I have a tendency to not jump him very much at home but I’m making an effort to hop over some stuff at least once a week right now so we don’t get too rusty. Ok, so I don’t get too rusty. Henry doesn’t have that problem so much.
I also just kind of put his hackamore on without thinking too much about it, but for schooling at home I think I should stick to his sidepull or switch the curb chain out for the leather strap. The hackamore with chain is a bit much for home, I think, especially since we’ve been working so much on finetuning his half-halt and adjustability in the rest of his day-to-day work. I had a little more whoa than I needed, but he was super good.
After I got off, Hillary hopped on and jumped him over a few things. It’s fun being able to share my cool horse with friends, and watch him do what he does best. And then after Hillary got off, Bea hopped on! I think Hillary is in a lot of trouble with this kid, she clearly inherited the horse bug. She kept crying every time Hillary took her off the horse. Sorry for laughing at your emotions, Bea, but it was hilarious.
On Sunday I did a dressage ride with Henry, and he was so good that it was almost weird. Since our dressage lesson at Pine Hill I’ve been amping up the pressure on him a bit, and he’s really handled it remarkably well. Way way better than he ever has in the past. I think part of it is that he’s a lot more comfortable in the new bit, which means the whole connection is better, which means he trusts it more, which means less tension and more consistency. It’s one of those things where pretty much every ride is an improvement on the last, and even though I know it will plateau again at some point, I’m really enjoying this part. We did tons of transitions, worked more on the sitting trot, and I plucked out different movements from the Prelim A and B test. He was SO rideable, its a great feeling.
After that Henry got a bit of a spa day, since we’re 2 weeks out from our first recognized show of the season. A little mane trim, a tail touch up, and an attempted dye job… but the store didn’t have the dye I usually buy and the one I bought as a substitute sucked. Like it did nothing. So I’ll have to go back to another store and get the box color that I normally use and try this again. Which is annoying.
I brought Presto in too after basically ignoring him all week, and got to work on shedding him out. He’s FINALLY blowing that shag carpet coat of his, and I can’t wait to get it off. He’s been going out with Dobby during the day now, so he’s got a few little dings (sorry Dobby, the baby horse isn’t so good with boundaries), but otherwise he looks surprisingly decent at the moment. He seems to be in between growth spurts right now, which is a-ok by me.
Otherwise I spent the weekend pretty glued to the Carolina live feed, watching Presto’s brethren. Will Faudree has two Mighty Magic’s now, one that was going in the 3* and one that was going in the 4*. The one that is more closely related to Presto (they share some damlines as well), Michel 233, was a total rockstar in the 4*, adding just a couple of XC time to his dressage score. Considering he just moved up to Advanced in February and has only done ONE before this 4*, I thought he was really impressive. I love being able to watch some siblings go and try to see the Presto in them… it makes all this time while I’m waiting for him to grow up go by a little bit faster.
There were a lot of really exciting young horses to watch, it makes me hopeful for the future of US eventing. I particularly loved QC Diamontaire (by Diarado) who just loped around the 3* like he was out for a casual school, finishing on his dressage score for 3rd, and Quantum Leap (by Quite Capitol) who made easy work of his first 4*. I think it’s going to be really fun to watch them develop.
Hope everyone else had a good weekend! Did anyone else watch the live feed? Anyone else as excited for show season to start as I am?