From Endurance to Dressage
Aren't they all? I like to say that if your weekend/vacation isn't good or busy, you aren't doing it right. Long ago, I learned that weekends are precious and as such, should never be wasted.
One of the first jobs for the weekend was installing a screen between Speedy's and Izzy's feeders. My boys would probably be very happy living together in one very large pasture, but since their nutritional needs are not the same, they have to live with a fence dividing the field in half. Speedy easily lives on a few flakes of alfalfa a day (with a small amount of beet pulp and rice bran). Izzy goes bonkers on alfalfa which means he lives on mountains of grass hay and a HUGE amount of beet pulp and rice bran (with a bunch of other stuff thrown in).
The problem is that when the new cover was built, the cross fence was replaced with one that made it easier for the horses to stick through heads through. Izzy's feeder was mounted in the corner to keep his hay dry when it rained which meant Speedy happily munched on Izzy's grass hay. Izzy didn't mind as he helped himself to Speedy's alfalfa. My boys never received the memo about their individual dietary restrictions. Eventually, we had no idea who was eating what except that Izzy's energy level spiked horribly last week which suggested he was getting too much alfalfa.
The welded mesh panel that we used is great because it's extremely sturdy and fairly safe. I say "fairly" because the ends can be very sharp. We cut off the excess and filed it down smooth, but there is still that corner piece at the top that I am not thrilled with. Unfortunately, I can't cut the top piece off because the next "row" of squares would be lower than the fence which would leave a gap that I would not be happy with either.
I would love to cut everything that is above the top rail and everything beyond the center support pole, but I don't have access to the kind of tools I would need. I will probably just wrap the corner piece with some duct tape until I come up with a better solution (or the right tools). The corner is not sharp, but it is a corner, and corners have a way of causing all sorts of expensive damage. For now, the panel is working the way it was intended, and everyone is getting the correct hay.
On Thursday afternoon, my mom called from Oregon and said she was on her way. I wasn't expecting her, so it was a lovely surprise. My husband had a tee time to golf, so I was secretly pleased that I got to spend the day alone with my mom. She loves coming to the ranch with me, so after stopping by one of her favorite local stores for their brand of balsamic vinegar, we drove out to the ranch where she sat in the shade watching me ride. I am not sure why that was fun for her, but she swore it was.
After riding, we fed both boys their lunch, and freshened up their waters. Later, mom and I stopped by the local grill for fish and chips, and then we made the trip downtown to Rosemary's Family Creamery. One of us had a small bowl of strawberry ice cream while the other enjoyed a delicious tin roof sundae with vanilla ice cream and chocolate fudge, both made on the premises. The whole thing was served with a small cup of toasted, salted peanuts. Let's just say one of us left Rosemary's with a tiny bit of a belly ache.
My mom left on Saturday morning - she wanted to be home in time to visit her church's Easter service, so I was able to make another trip to Moorpark for a lesson with Sean Cunningham, owner and trainer at STC Dressage. More on that in the next day or two, but my friend Valerie agreed to have her lesson immediately after mine so that I could watch at least one lesson.
Valerie is bringing along a somewhat new-to-her-horse (she's had him about 5 months) who has some tension issues of his own. Listening to Sean's coaching while watching Valerie ride Cinco really helped me understand what Sean had been telling me. Every trainer has their own way of explaining things, so I very much appreciated the opportunity to watch and listen.
On Sunday, I packed in yet another chore. More on that tomorrow.
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
2023 Completed …
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%: