From Endurance to Dressage
Fair warning, I am NOT tracking my pony dollars in 2013. I do not consider my husband and I to be in any shape or form well off. We work very hard, are careful with our money, and go without some things in order to have other things. With that said, the amount I spend on a hobby is frightening. There are American families (and even more non-American families) who live on less than what I've spent this year. That doesn't mean I am going to give up my horses, but I just don't want to know in such exquisite detail how much money this whole thing costs me.
I was discussing this blog series with one of my colleagues the other day. He pointed out that I shouldn't feel so bad as even he knows that I don't do a lot of things so that I can do this. He pointed out that Hubby and I don't eat out a lot, go to the movies, shop for clothing or jewelry, buy new cars, etc. He was right of course, but still ...
Happily, I was able to keep September's expenditures to a pretty low number. This might be the least I've spent in a month all year. We got a small pay cut this school year (2.73%) which means I have a little less spending money to toss around right now.
There's also the distinct, and very real, possibility that California's kids will go to school up to 20 fewer days next year. If that happens, my pay will be cut by more than 10%. There are several propositions on the November ballot that are designed to temporarily "fix" public school funding, but most Californians are mistrustful of our legislature and their ability to correctly handle our state's finances. We shall see.
For now, I am just going to ride, take lessons, attend clinics, and start showing again in the spring like I've been doing. As someone once told me, there's no point in borrowing trouble from tomorrow.
Show report is coming. I swear. There was just too much to process this early in the morning. For now, here is August's expense report, and it's a biggie!
Click images to enlarge.
Things are NOT getting any less expensive. As expected, the truck needed new tires which bumped my July bills over the two grand mark. Funny to say, but my goal each month is to spend less than two thousand dollars. Something always comes up though: one of the horses gets sick, trailer needs repairs, big show somewhere far away, or tack needs fixing/replacing. Sheesh ...
I already know that August is going to be an expensive month as well. I have a schooling show the first weekend, a clinic the second weekend, and Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC) the final weekend. I got to "skip" the farrier bill in July, but that bill be due again in August. It's not that shoes were free, but Jaime came at the end of June and will return the beginning of August which meant he didn't come in July. It's a good thing as that bit of savings helped fund my new tires.
I will save something on my August board, yippee, as I was on barn duty for several weeks in July. That savings is what's funding a part of the RAAC show; the show premium and stabling for RAAC came out to $413. No small potatoes.
I don't mean to sound as though I am whining. I could save myself a boat load of money if I stopped showing, but it's the showing that I like the most. From October through February I probably won't show so my expenses should go back down.
Maybe I need to start investing in an apple a day ...
I feel like sitting out on the street corner with a can and a sign that says, Will scoop poop for hay. June was a killer month for bills. I did two shows, sent my boots in for a repair, replaced my helmet after my fall in May, and had my saddle's flocking adjusted to more suitably fit both boys. That stuff is rather expensive. I also spent a bundle on my truck. Unfortunately, that also included tires which will be paid for in July.
Thankfully, Speedy's little tummy ache only cost me the price of a tube of Banamine, under $40, which will also be paid for in July. I hope to get through July without quite so much damage to my checking account.
If you're just joining this series, you can read about the first five months of the year by clicking this link. Click images to enlarge.
Even with a CDS/USDF/USEF show, I managed to cut my expenses way back for the month of May. Whew! And since the show was local, I didn't need to put any gas in my truck. Last month I spent more than $175 just in gas for the guzzler. I also worked hard not to buy any tack or gear this month. I wasn't completely successful, but at least I kept that spending under a hundred bucks.
One last comment - my coworkers brought up the Romney thing. They know I ride and asked if I wasn't shocked at what Mrs. Romney spends. My answer was this: I expect to spend $25,000 this year. Does that make me a bad person?
Some hobbies are more expensive than others. Some people make more money than others. I don't think it's appropriate to pick on people just because they have more money than I do.
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 Second Level. 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%
2021 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
(Q) Must Qualify
2022 Pending …
2021 Completed …
10/24-25 SCEC (***)
11/7-11/8 SB (***)
4/10-11 SCEC (***)
5/16-17 El Sueño (***)
6/26-27 SCEC (***)
7/17-18 El Sueño (***)
8/7-8 SCEC (***)
10/30-31 SCEC (***)
2021 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
2nd Level Qualifying
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 60.610% Bhathal
2nd Level Qualifying
5 Scores/4 Judges/61%:
Stuff I Read