Sweltering At Loch Moy Starter 3

I can’t remember a Memorial Day weekend where it wasn’t hideously hot in Virginia, and this year was no different. I competed at the third Loch Moy Starter Trial after missing the second one last month due to Oh So’s injury. As much as I missed being at Virginia Horse Trials, I was glad I made the choice I did, because we won!

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GRC Photo

It was basically gross and humid from the time I got to the barn at 7am until I got home that night at 7pm which really just exhausts me. I’ve never been a hot weather person, and this was the first weekend where we were eventing in the heat. We’d gotten a taste of it the week before at the PVDA show and didn’t like it then either!

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Badminton: Checking Off The Bucket List

I gave up a trip to Kentucky this year so I could check off a big bucket list item; going to the Badminton Horse Trials!

I’ve watched my VHS tapes and DVDs of the event from as far back as the mid-90s and never dreamed I’d ever go, but I decided this was the year.

A photographer friend who’d always wanted to go met me in London, and we started with a quick adventure in the city. It’s strange since I was just there in November, but I had a pretty good feel for how to get around.

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Farewell Sam

On April 20 my family said goodbye to Sam. Over the last few years he’s developed severe arthritis in his right knee, and  while he was still full of life at age 24, his body just couldn’t keep up, and we were unable to manage his pain.

We’ve never euthanized a horse before, so this was a new and emotional experience, but I’m happy we were able to choose his time. He’s now resting peacefully in his paddock overlooking our farm. He always did like to know everything that was going on in his domain.

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Things I’m Loving In April

A lot of blogs I read have monthly posts about products they’ve been enjoying, so I thought I’d try it out! I am definitely a product junkie, both horse and human, so I’m going to try to feature a few items here each month and do quick, mini reviews.

Here goes!

 

ROMFH Champion Breeches

When I passed by a tack store trailer at the Adequan West Coast Dressage Festival this winter, I paused to take a look at a rack of colorful ROMFH breeches. I think I owned a tan pair back in the day, but it’s been awhile since I’ve bought anything from the brand.

I got super inspired by the bright colors, but realized that most of them were the brands’ pricier models. But as I was searching online I came across the more affordable Champion breeches.

They come in more conservative colors, and I’d been looking for a new pair of schooling breeches that I could wear to lessons and not offend my trainers, so the slate blue called me name. They’re $129, which for the quality I think is a very good deal. I do love the lower priced SmartPak Piper breeches, but I’ve been wearing through the crotch/upper thighs on those pretty quickly with certain colors, which is super disappointing.

The Champion breeches are mid-rise, so they don’t require a belt like the Pipers do, and the material is thin enough for summer riding, and also seems to be stain, dirt and water resistant. After I give Oh So a bath or brush him when he’s muddy, the water dries quickly on the breeches and the dirt wipes off.

They have side pockets, which takes some getting used to since I usually put my phone in the back pockets of my Pipers, but overall, I really love them and would like to get a tan pair for showing.

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Product Review: Majyk Equipe Cross-Country Boots and Dressage Boots

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Sporting our Majyk Equipe X Country Boots.

I’d been peripherally aware of Majyk Equipe’s cross-country boots because Boyd Martin had been the face of the brand when they first came out, but I didn’t really pay attention because they seemed like just another pair of black cross-country boots, and I was happy with my Premier boots.

Then they came out with the Elite X Country Boot in colors, including black and red, and I suddenly paid attention!

My Premier front boots were getting pretty beat up, so I knew it was time to try something new.

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2017 In The Rearview

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In the grand scheme of things, 2017 is a year I’d like to forget. I started off the year thinking positively and wanting to get out of my comfort zone. I was ready to embrace the first year of my 30s and make it the best year ever.

Things were going pretty well in the winter and spring. I was pretty busy traveling for work, but I was able to get Oh So out to a couple of shows. We could have won Morven Park in March, but decided it was a bit too wet to run cross-country and withdrew, but we had a good run at the Loch Moy Starter Trial in April.

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A Day In L.A.

I had a lovely visit to the USEA Annual Meeting And Convention in Long Beach, Calif., but before I did that I took a day to explore Los Angeles.

I did just about every touristy thing in L.A. back in 2004 with my family, but I wanted to visit now that I’ve had so many more years of travel experience and perspective.

Unfortunately the city is so huge and traffic is so bad that a day is just not enough time to see everything!

I decided on the Hop On Hop Off bus, but it had 4 routes, and the two I chose were slow, so I ended up using an Uber too.

I decided last minute to take a studio tour of Warner Brothers, so I only had until about 2 p.m. to see other sights.

I started my day by walking from my hotel to the Farmer’s Market. I loved wandering through the narrow aisles past foods from different parts of the world, exquisite desserts and shops full of trinkets and souvenirs. It felt a bit like being in Europe.

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Donation Derby Fun!

It’s been a crazy busy month with my vacation, a trip to Ocala and Thanksgiving, so I haven’t had much time to blog. Now I’m off to California tomorrow for the USEA Convention and for a quick visit to L.A.!

But before that I was able to get Oh So out to the Loch Moy Donation Derby on Sunday.

I was super excited to ride Saturday, but after I fed him his breakfast and went to clean his legs up I realized he’d sprung a shoe! He lives out in a decent amount of mud and hasn’t lost a shoe for a very long time, and it was quite dry, so I was pretty upset.

Luckily the derby ran a second day, so if I could find a farrier to tack it back on I’d be OK.

I spent the day calling about 10 farriers with no luck, and by 4 p.m., I’d resigned myself to the fact that I wouldn’t be going- a great way to cap a pretty horrible year of wasted money and disappointment as far as my riding goals.

But a local farrier came through in the end by some miracle at 5 p.m. and we got it back on!

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Winding Down

I debated titling this post, “There Goes The Season,” or “What Season?” so please excuse the following whine session!

I was prepped and ready to go today to the only event this fall that I could get to, the Waredaca Starter Trials.

Between travel and making sure I felt absolutely ready as far as my ankles go, it just took us awhile to get to this point, and last night they decided to postpone to a weekend I’m not available due to the possibility of inclement weather (which didn’t start coming in until well after my ride times would have been today).

It’s been exceptionally dry this fall, so of course the one day I could get to an event it had to rain!

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Celebrating 10 Years With Oh So

This post is a little late, but here goes!

Ten years ago on Sept. 28 I drove out of Michelle and Dustin Craig’s barn with Oh So in tow. It’s been a life-changing experience to bring along my first OTTB, and he’s certainly taught me a lot about patience, being brave and most of all, living every day to the fullest, because after all, that’s how he got his name, Oh So Extreme. Everything he does is to the extreme.

He’s been there through the tough times and many life changes, and looking between his ears remains a privilege.

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