Frankly, I just DO too much to report it in a short, monthly summary. Or, at least it feels like I am always doing something newsworthy. For me, there's a story in everything that happens at the barn, even when it's just a regular ride. So instead of the monthly recap, I am just going to give you some year-end totals and stats.
Here are My 5 Year-in-Review Things:
I also think it's interesting that my lesson costs were so much higher than my show costs. I showed at five USDF shows this year; but I obviously spent a lot of time with trainers and clinicians, too.
With Speedy I did …
- Four, 2-day USDF/USEF/CDS-rated shows
- One, 1-day USDF/USEF/CDS-rated show
- One schooling show
- Two, 2-day clinics with Christian Schacht
- One, 1-day clinic with Christian Schacht
- One Fox Hunt (with Lousiana aboard)
With Sydney I did …
- Three CDS-rated shows
- Three schooling shows
- One, 2-day clinic with Susanne von Dietze
- One, 2-day clinic with Christian Schacht (the same one Speedy did)
- One Ride-a-Test
- One Fox Hunt
To list it another way …
- 16 show days
- 9 clinic rides
- 1 Ride-a-Test
- 1 Fox Hunt
Rides on My Own
Even more surprising to me was the number of non-riding days: 109! I feel like I ride nearly every day, but in reality, I only rode 70% of the year. What I find even more interesting is that I rode those 358 times on only 256 days; that's a lot of two-a-days!
We went to Central America for 11 days in June which explains the large number of non-riding days in that month.
Speedy was lame for two weeks in October due to an abscess (?) which explains his limited time under saddle.
Speedy was ridden more at the beginning of the year because I showed him through July, but after that, it was more about Sydney.
I am sure you're wondering how I know all of this. I keep a calendar at the barn, and before I leave each day, I note what I did, who I rode, where, and any other tidbit that seems interesting. If someone seemed off, bucked like crazy, or was particularly mellow, I note that too. It's an easy way for me to keep track of both horses' health and riding schedules.
In the End
I really don't know what my plans are for him in 2014. Sometimes I think I should cut my losses and sell him, but then I think about how much I am learning by riding him. I know I am a much better rider by struggling with him than I would be without him. Am I having tons of fun doing it? No, not really, but so far it has been worth it.
As disappointed as I am in Sydney's year, I'm very pleased with the year that Speedy had. We started out struggling to crack 60% at Training Level, but ultimately, we rocked it with scores as high as 67% at USDF shows. We finished the show season with a Championship neck ribbon and the confidence to move on to First Level in 2014.