I've been back in PA full time since April 1st and Keegan arrived back April 18th, thanks to Missy (although it is sad that she and BG will not be running Rolex this year). I head to Rolex tomorrow to spectate and xc steward. In the interim, Keegan and I are settling back in at Blue Hill and the other horses are gearing up their competition seasons. In no particular order, (what do you call the written equivalent of a sound byte) things of potential interest:
Caitlin took Tucker (barn name of Gin & Tonic) to River Glen, where he was quite a good boy, despite one green stop. His flat work is coming. Given that Caitlin is doing it under Debi's training, I'm sure it is coming quite impressively. He is still sensitive about contact, but getting more willing to accept it and we're looking forward to his next outing at Poplar next weekend.
Meanwhile, Rachel and Cole have become quite and impressive partnership. They started the season novice at Plantation in April and finished on their dressage score, good enough for 7th place. They joined us cross country schooling on Tuesday (more about that later) and looked great. Their next outing is scheduled for Fair Hill May 19th at training level.
I'm not even going to say anything about the spotted menace for fear of jinxing Lynn, but they did have a cross country school that made both of them very happy last weekend.
Gizmo is still looking for a new partner. I'm hoping that young Jordan Gandy will start riding him soon. Meanwhile, Hilda is riding him a bit and he is happy with pony Finn as his new paddock partner now that Keegan is home.
Horse Finn needs a new home. Please, somebody buy him.
Since I last posted, I TDed at Meadow Creek Park - great inaugural event put on by the Petersen's after dealing with torrential rains and having to completely rebuild the cross-country course and several of the roadways that run over (although for a while under) the creeks on the property. Danny Warrington and Carsten Meyers built lovely galloping courses and Robbie and Brad ran Starter-Preliminary as well as FEH and YEH and put on a great competitors party with the help of Domaine Serene Winery. I judged the SJ at Plantation, great fun to see all the area II folks there and I volunteered and judged SJ at Fair Hill last weekend. Also great fun, especially seeing Caitlin Silliman and Jeff Kibbie run at advanced. Jersey Fresh is next for both of them and I will be there volunteering as well.
Meanwhile, Keegan and I are getting back in the swing. Missy gave us a great dressage lesson on Monday and we had super fun schooling at Fair Hill on Tuesday, where Keegan continues to be brave and fun over fences and cope admirably with my less than stellar riding (apparently, in 3 weeks, I'd forgotten how to ride xc), but by the end we jumped several fences in a row and it all went very well. Cindi Cauffman was with us and she and Ben looked super for only their second time out. Ben and Keegan will be heading to the combined test at Blue Goose next weekend if all goes as planned.
Yesterday, we had Annette Galvin from www.hastilow.usa out to do a saddle fitting. We got a pad to fill in the hollow behind Keegan's wither for the jump saddle and bought a new dressage saddle (yes, I know....but this one really fits us both and I actually feel like I can sit up like a normal person in it). Bonus, it was the least expensive of all the saddles we tried and came in under half my budgeted price for a new dressage saddle. Now, I just need to keep working on selling the others. Lynn is trying the Laser for Keebler and Mirar is going to borrow one for the summer, but still available are (still all 17.5 medium):
1) CWD monoflap
2) Hulsebos WB4
3) E. Jeffries Elite
4) Kieffer Ulla Salzegeber
as well as Bonnie Kibbie's Michael Stokes Centaur and Rachel Gross's older Miller Klimke, so if anyone is looking let us know. Prices range from under $500 through around $2400, but there are deals to be had.
That's where things are. Work is busy as always and maybe a bit busier than usual. I've rediscovered spinning at www.bodycycle.com, continue with www.purebarre.com and keep trying to do more yoga as well as running with the goal of the www.jfk50mile.org in November.
Will try to be more diligent. Hope everyone is enjoying the spring.