Back to life as we know it……..
I am finally willing and able to sit back down to make another post…..the last week has been totally wild! I kept feeling like every time we would just about know what to expect we would get another curve ball, like, say, an earthquake???? Sure. Why not….
We got through the week last week and made our preparations for my first horse trial of the season and for my first show with Luke….well, technically my first ride outside of an enclosed ring on Luke save one long walk, all while still having no power which meant dirty horses and no light to braid…..and no showers for the humans!
Here is the part where I will pause to thank some awesome people that made last week work.First and most important my mom for running the show at ABBF back in Maryland when she would really rather be here. I know that without her things would have been completely out of control up there! While I love and appreciate everyone who has helped out at the farm this week a lot of people wound up sick and or snowed in and my mom really had to step up and take over. THANK YOU!!!!!! My awesome husband and my dad for clearing the paths to get to the horses and keeping the kids entertained on their 5 day weekend! And of course for Louisa, here in Aiken, for offering me the use of her SHOWER when we were several days in to the power outage. Julia and Mary were fabulous company as we sorted our way through managing all the horses needs as well as our own to get through!
Now back to business……Luke had an outstanding debut under less than ideal circumstances, he was steady and relaxed in the dressage even with wild wind and wild horses everywhere. He went cross country like he hadn’t missed a day of it….SO brave this horse. Then he show jumped with more grace and composure than I expected only dropping one rail when his ding dong rider took…..oh, I don’t know, 5 too many tugs coming up a hill to an oxer. Next weekend should be so much fun at Pine Top for his first Training level. I can’t wait!
One last little memo for anyone who wasn’t sure…..Bomber still loves cross country. Good gracious does that horse LOVE cross country. We had our first school over solid obstacles in over a year today he is just so much fun. I think he really missed it and is feeling quite pleased and proud this afternoon! We are headed to Pine Top this weekend to run the Preliminary just to test out his legs and brain but I think we are going to have a really good time this spring!
Friday 2/14/14 – Kelley, Julia, and Mary lost power on Wednesday, and by last reports, it still wasn’t back on. But today was warmer so the horses got to be naked and they could collect water melting off the roof of the barn. Resourceful ladies!
I hope they get power soon! I can’t even imagine how many layers of clothing they are wearing at night to be comfortable enough to sleep. Chin up girls! Each day gets warmer and warmer!
2/12/14 Now there is ice……BUT we do have power for now! The horses are spending the day in today because of all the ice and Bomber is none too happy to be out of his paddock where he can roll to his hearts content. Luke is happily napping and Spots just wants to nibble on everyone and everything! They all did get out to stretch their legs yesterday though and I hope that by tomorrow afternoon we should be able to get out again.
Well… things are not starting out exactly the way I had envisioned. The forecast in Aiken is for rain today and heavy icing tomorrow. I don’t think I will be getting that hack or cross country school in today or anytime soon. I know I can’t complain since at home the are calling for 6 inches (or more) of snow from this same system. I will truly be happy to bid this winter goodbye!
On the up side Bomber, Spots, and Luke did get to go out for a few hours yesterday after we arrived with no clothing to weigh them down and no rutted frozen footing to bruise their feet… this was cause for much celebrating!
Looking ahead, things get much better weather wise by the end of the week and into next week too! I will ride today however, that is what they make rain pants for!
Want some tips on how to walk your course if your trainer isn’t available? Well lucky for you Kelley has some great advice that you can put to use at your next show! Click here and go to pages 12-13.
Things have been heating up around ABBF this month! Not only have we faced some seriously HOT weather but I feel like the slow start we had to the spring and summer finally boiled off and things are finally in full swing around here! Bomber is slowly making his return to work after his rather extended vacation and he is feeling SUPER! I can’t wait to see how he comes through the fall so we can hopefully make some plans for next year. Spotty felt that Bomber shouldn’t be the only one lounging about so he saw it appropriate to take a few weeks off for a minor injury as well, but all indications are that he is ready for the fall competition season to get going! I am so excited to see what we can get done after having such a fun spring.
The most exciting update from the month of July is perhaps about Po who went to his first show, a combined test at the lovely Southwind Farm in Damascus, MD, and he won! He was such a professional, sleeping at the trailer all afternoon and bopping around the show jumping course like he has been doing it all his life. Better even still, this past weekend he made his eventing debut at Full Moon Farm’s Aloha HT. He jumped around what I considered to be a pretty tough beginner novice course to finish on his dressage score and in second place! He is turning out to be such a lovely horse that is the perfect prospect for just about any discipline. Such and easy going guy and he is certainly uncomplicated enough to be someone’s first green bean to bring along! I feel very lucky to have him in my barn. See some new videos posted on the sales page.
The last, but not least bit of exciting news for July, has been the addition of a lovely 3 yo TB gelding (thank you once again to the fabulous Jen Johnston and Leslie Molinari for putting us together). His name is “Very Tasteful” aka “Tate”… yes that is the name of my youngest son but you just try convincing the most stubborn child on the planet that it might be “weird” to have a horse in the barn with same name! In any case, watch for this one in the future, we think he is going places!!!
First Baby XC School!
A post discussing the awesomeness of ABBF sale horse Diablo Guapo (aka “Po”) is long overdue, but first I want to congratulate Ashleigh Horton who bought Mesonic from us about a month ago. He is a super kind and willing horse and I know they are going to have SO much fun together. We brought Po and Mesonic home at the same time and they both were so quick to show what lovely horses they are. We have had our hands on Po for a bit longer so he has started some jumping under saddle including a little bit of cross country! An absolute delight to work with, he eats up every new task and experience. Just this past week we took him out to the baby x/c field to see what he thought about that! It was such a pleasant surprise that he didn’t even bat an eye at popping over the handful of jumps we have! He has a huge personality that keeps everyone on the farm entertained. Just the right mix of confidence and playfulness to make him the kind of horse I love to work with. Not to mention that loves being groomed and snuggled. He is certain he can do anything you ask him to… and most likely a little better than anyone else. He isn’t quite sure why I haven’t decided to keep him yet, just like I did with his 1/2 brother Spots. I won’t say it’s not tempting BUT we certainly cannot hold on to ever nice horse that comes through the barn, even if we wish we could! So if you are looking for an exciting and fun prospect for eventing or really just about anything check this boy out! I am certain he will not disappoint!
On a super cold day last week, Kel and I took the newbies for their first hack off the property. No older chaperone needed as these two are just so mellow. You can see Nic’s ears and Po’s nice rump :-). And yes, Kel is riding in her Carhartts, it was that cold. Come on spring!
Ok, so now I have had the pleasure to sit on both of them (of course Kel has been on them each several times), and all I can say is WOW! They are both just such good natured guys. Easy going, easy to work around, and quiet. And they both have such nice gaits. Other than Spots, I can’t remember when we have had OTTBs that come home with nice slow, open trots and such balanced canters. We haven’t jumped them yet (just exposed them to poles), but you feel like you could go and jump a course on them right now because they feel so good underneath you. Their backs are so soft. And then on top of that, they are super smart and trainable! Does Kel know how to pick ‘em or what!?
We have two VERY nice sale prospects that just came to the farm last week! Both are 5yo OTTB geldings with awesome conformation and movement. We are all itching to start working with them. Keep checking back for updates with pictures and more video, but here is a little sneak peek to wet your appetite!
Mesonic (“Nic”) is a 16+ H dark bay and is I believe a cousin to Western Comet!
Diablo Guapo (“Po”) is a 16.1+ H grey roan and he is a half sibling to Kelley’s amazing Spots!
Stay tuned for more information to be added to our sales page in the coming weeks!