Showing posts from August, 2014

"You're riding Enzo today"

Translation: You might die today. They say great minds think alike, but I get the feeling that insane minds think the same too because Fifi, Lee, and Miss El all thought that it would be a good idea for me to ride Enzo. My cardiorespiratory rate said otherwise. Enzo (formerly named Cloudy) is a rescue. The barn owners have had him since December, and he's come a long way, but he's not all there in the head. Miss El has been training him, and Fifi has ridden him quite a bit and took him to his first show a couple weekends ago. He has his quirks though, quirks that I didn't exactly think I was capable of handling. To put it simply, I could have ruined him, or he was going to ruin me. It was 50/50, either was likely. Photos by Gina Ellis of Blue Ribbon Photography Fifi helped me brush him and tack him up. I, with a shaky hand, stiff brushed a layer of dirt and dust that had settled deep into his coat. Apparently he likes to roll. We tack him up, and I get on, and th

The end of a short lived saga

Unfortunately, I will no longer be riding Zoey. As cute and sweet as she is, she scares me, and I told myself, in this case, that I would not continue to ride her if I got scared. It's just not a good idea. However, there is a local Hunter Derby happening over winter that I might be able to do depending on the cost. There's a first place prize of $1300, so hopefully I can try my hand at that. There was no kicking out this time when I got on. She was a lot more up today, and wasn't too happy about me trying to sit the trot. One of the things I love about her is her smooth trot, but her going giraffe when I try it isn't encouraging. She did kick out when we tried to canter though. Her canter was okay-ish. We had more good strides than last time, but she was just so tense and freaking out the whole time. Miss S had us trot a circle with one crossbar. Everyone else was trotting in then picking up the canter, but I did not feel comfortable cantering her over anything. Sh

One good thing about school starting soon

Like most teenagers, I am not very happy about going back to school, especially since I'm a senior this year and have college looming in the distance. Despite the tragedy that will fill the next nine months, I am actually excited about one of my classes: Computer Aided Drafting & Design, otherwise known as CADD. It's basically architecture class, or at least that's how I describe it before people ask, "What does that mean?" We learn how to do all that house design stuff and model mechanical parts. It's a fun class, but that's mostly because I don't talk at all and just sit and add various items to my growing and perhaps oversized portfolio. Anyway, back when I was first designing and was mostly self-taught, I completely failed at doing houses, so I tried my hand at barns, which were still horrible, but they were slightly better than the houses, so I kept them. I have over 100 plans, but they all need to be adjusted in some way before they could

Apparently summer is ending

Which means that cold weather, layers, and the best drinks that Starbucks makes ever are coming back. I for one hate the cold. It disgusts me. Breathing in winter air is like shoving a million tiny razors through your nasal passages, into your throat, and down your windpipe; in short, the cold is pure agony to me, which is why I try my hardest to keep it away from as much skin as I possibly can. I do not have a good set of winter gear, so this year I'm getting prepared ahead of time (a bit late in my opinion, but better late than never). The best part about it not being winter or right before winter is that prices are still low. The best time to buy winter items is actually right as show season is beginning; if you get most of your gear from Dover, I highly suggest that you look at the closeouts and coupons in the catalog around April/May. I actually took my business to Equestrian Collections again since I want to make use of that points system (although I think I'll get a

Pack your bags!

I have a confession to make: I might be related to Dora the Explorer. No, I'm not Mexican, nor do I condone keeping monkeys as pets, but, when I go on adventures (to the barn), I do have a backpack with me, or at least a bag of some sort. I used to throw everything into my helmet bag; I outgrew it. Then I threw all my things into a sling bag; I outgrew it. At that point, I started looking into getting one of those helmet backpacks. There are a few of them floating around with enticing price tags. Here's a few. N. Outfitters Ringside Pack GPA Helmet Backpack Grand Prix Rider's Backpack Under Armour Rider's Backpack The Hacksack Grand Prix Helmet Backpack As nice as these bags are (especially the Hacksack, and it comes in more colors!), once I graduated up from the sling bag, I just started using an old school backpack. We've accumulated a collection over the years; my mom tends to get me a new one every other year. I put a lot of we

Green ponies are fun, right?

When they're not throwing unjustified fits because you ask them to trot or canter, they're fun. Trust me, I am a scientist. I know things. We have this pony at the barn named Zoey, and she has been a long, drawn out project that would likely get a terrible grade if she were turned in at this point. Miss S has had her for two or three years now; she was one of the first ponies that was bought for the kids. She was green then, but calm and fancy, so Miss S got her (along with the Satan pony that is Blue) and started riding her. Welp, a couple months in, she came up lame. She was given some stall rest, we had her legs checked, and the apparent problem was how her feet were being trimmed. Everything was sorted out, and she was fine for another couple of weeks, but then she came up lame again, and that's basically what the past two years have been. She's been lame on and off and ended up having six months of stall rest at one point. Mind you, this is a rather high energy p

That's . . . interesting.

You know, I usually come across new brands while browsing through Pinterest, but Polyvore user High-Standards has introduced me to something new: GhoDho. The brand was founded by Isheeta Dabawala, an avid equestrian with a creative eye when it comes to fashion. The name of the company reflects her Indian roots; "GhoDho" is the Hindu word for horse. From their website: “I have always wanted to find breeches I can wear in and out of the stables,” said Isheeta. “I was inspired to create  GhoDho , because I really felt that the equestrian market was lacking in modern clothing for young riders. It was important to create a breech that is practical, affordable, and fashionable.” Based on looks alone, I think she hit the nail on the head. Yes, they're eccentric. I've actually had some trouble matching these breeches. The Black Principle (black shirt, black belt, black boots) doesn't work too well here; these breeches have weakened my set game, but, I still li

Welp, that's it

This whole season, building up to one moment, this one goal that I have hunted down for the past four months. I ended up third in the finals, but that was after not being able to even look at breakfast then having my nerves body slam me at the last minute. I also had to wear my less than comfortable white show shirt because I'll be damned if I don't listen to at least that little smidgeon of advice that Marianne offered to me. A lot of junior riders wish that they were born on the East Coast so that they could have so much access to bigger shows, but those shows are not fun unless everything you wear is made from coolmax. I would love to say that the humidity hit a record on Saturday, but, no, it was at it's regular, annoying, moderately unbearable level. My white show shirt is just a basic shirt. Wearing it again actually made me appreciate my new shirt a little bit more (I'd actually been planning on writing a review on Dover about how it didn't keep me that co

It's the final countdown

The final is two days from now. Friday is the only thing standing between me and possibly the biggest moment of my limited junior career. I would love to morph into a keyboard playing tyrannosaurus-rex right about now, though. We haven't ridden in the big arena for a while because the ground was destroyed a while back. We plowed, then it poured again; we plowed again, it poured again, and the jumps all got knocked down. All work recently has been either in the indoor or smaller outdoor, and Baby has started to race in both, which is making me very nervous about going into a bigger space where there will be more space in between the jump and the arena fence. Miss S tried to simulate what Saturday was going to be like. She changed the jumps in the small outdoor up a bit while we warmed up in the indoor. Baby was fine for flatwork; I even shortened my stirrups today, and it was fine, but once we started jumping, she just wanted to go, go, go! I honestly do not have time for tha

Whoa, I rode 3 days in a row

That's a biggie. Surprisingly, my legs aren't complaining that much. It's the hips that won't stop bitching. First to get my booty into gear was Miss El on Sunday. The lesson before me ran over a little bit (which was good cause I got there late, but I had iced coffee, so it was okay), so I got on and did my stretches. When she was able to sit down and watch me, I was already on my hip stretches, which she said were, and I quote, "great." We did two pointing again as well, and I got into the initial position easily, but I was still stuggling to hold myself up and engage that core. We did more trot work than last time. The main focus was getting me to both relax and get myself balanced. The posting was a lot better, despite the midget stirrups. I am still rather futilely attempting to drop my left heel lower. I just have to keep reminding myself to stretch up my right shoulder, although Miss El is the type to keep repeating what she wants you to do, so I do

The never ending battle for an independent seat

Or, rather, the never ending battle to take every joint in my body and make it move without having all the others follow. I took my first lesson with Fifi's trainer yesterday. I'm just not feeling like a serious competitor in this medal, and I don't want to go out there and look like I don't know what I'm doing, so this next week is where I attempt to rush prepare while the clock ticks down. It's the equivalent of cramming before a final exam, but that's basically what I do in school, and I'm not doing too bad, so hopefully it works with this kind of final. I actually would have taken a lesson earlier; I had actually planned to take one the weekend before my last show, but I chickened out (oh c'mon I'm shy). Now that I have garnered up the confidence, I set up a lesson for Friday morning. When I got there, it was just the trainer, Miss El, and Anna. I was riding Seren, a highly opinionated, rather ill tempered Quarter Horse mare. It's th