The Wetherbrooke Farm Dressage and Hunter Shows August 1-2

We are having our 2nd annual dressage and hunter shows at our farm this weekend.  We have spent a great deal of time and effort putting it all together.  I just want to say thank you in advance for all of your hard work!  We couldn’t do it without the help of our families, friends, and students!

To the brat pack—you know who you are!!  Thanks for all of the painting, moving jumps, babysitting, organizing, and all of the other things you do to help me out on a daily basis.  You guys are priceless.  Life is so much more fun with you 3 in it.

To the adults  (ha ha ha)–thank you for your help in all areas of horse care, pep talking, grooming, entreprenuering, office painting, advice giving etc.  I love you all.

To the barn rats—yes, you.  Thanks for all of your help as well.  You are the spice of our life (and the drinkers of our pop).  You are the best fetchers, babysitters, hay movers, dinosaur wranglers, and pony pal helpers that anyone could ever ask for.

To the men—  Thank you for your help in all things related to speaker systems, measuring, hauling, lifting, mowing, dragging, weed wacking, and financing.  We couldn’t do it without you—–although I know for a fact you wish we could.

And thank you to all of our other volunteers that are willing to give up a whole weekend to help us out with our shows…..

Jim and Ann Von Handorf–Concession Stand

Tom and Jo–Concession Stand

Jan Meredith—-Babysitting

Greg Meredith–Parking Attendant

Ten Point Farm and Property Management–Landscaping

Thanks again for everything—–Joy

Team Wetherbrooke—Success at Gemwood Horse Trials

Last weekend I took 6 horses to compete at the Gemwood Horse Trials in Fairborn, Ohio.  I couldn’t have been prouder of our team!

Gus and I competed in the Open Training division, and ended up in 3rd in dressage and 2nd place overall with a score of 29.1.  Julie Hooper and Sapphire had an amazing weekend coming in 4th after dressage and 2nd place overall in her Beginner Novice division.   Elizabeth Montgomery and her faithful jumper Celine placed 5th after dressage and came in 3rd overall in her Beginner Novice division.  Both Julie and Elizabeth had great Cross Country rides!  Jen Wenning had a picture perfect 1st ever horse trials.  She and her thoroughbred, Lucky, placed 2nd in the dressage and ended up winning her Starter division.  She also  won the “Highest placed thoroughbred award”.  Our newest eventing team members, Michelle Richardson and Oreo, had a great weekend and placed 7th after dressage and 6th overall in her Starter division.  Great job, Michelle!  And last, but certainly not least…… Karen and her wonder pony,Ike, had a fun weekend conquering all types of first horse trials issues.  He did fantastic!  (he would have been especially great were it not for a few pesky flowers!  Ha Ha )  He went clean on his cross country test and Karen looked like she was having fun doing it.

Thanks again for a really fun weekend!  Congratulations to all of you and your four legged counterparts!  You guys were great!  I look forward to the next one.


Wrangling and motherhood

Aspiring to be an upper level eventer while being a mother has been a difficult and challenging road.  If you have ever wondered why it is that you don’t see a great deal of advanced level riders wheeling around strollers or carrying crying children on their hips,  you have come to the right place…….

You know that you are not Karen O’Connor when…..

1.  Your 3 year old son has once again pooped in his frog boots while you are teaching a lesson

2.  Everything that you shout while instructing a student is echoed back to you like a parrot on helium

3.  Your sawdust pile looks like a construction site along I-75 with every miniature piece of heavy equipment know to man

4.  Your daughter decides that the best way to bring a chair to the indoor arena (for a parent to sit on during a lesson)  is to tie it to her bike with a piece of twine and drag it up the gravel driveway to the arena

5.  Your hayloft is littered with notes on pretty pink paper signed by those who call themselves something like “BFF”—-which I have learned means “Barn Friends Forever”.

6.  Your 3 year old son is naked again from the waist down peeing on the bushes

7.  Basketballs  mysteriously end up in  horses’ stalls.  Could it be from shooting hoops up in  the hayloft??? Could it be from kids shooting hoops up in the hayloft??? NAAAAWWWWW….couldn’t be.

8.  You can’t have a conversation with anyone without hearing the words—“Talk to MEEEE mommy!”

9.  Juice boxes and drink pouches litter your farm

10. You hear the question “are you done yet?”  at least 100 times per day.

It is a challenging path that I have chosen.  It makes me think that I must really, really. really,  want to do this sport.  I’m not sure Karen O’Connor is tough enough—ha ha ha.

Looking ahead to “Gemwood HT”—–A first time for many!!!

I am really excited about getting our eventing team prepared for Gemwood at the end of July!   It will be a first for many of our riders–and some of our horses!  Gus and I will stay at Training level for this one.  Elizabeth and Celine and Julie and Sapphie will be competing in beginner novice.  Our working student Michelle will be riding her horse Oreo for the first time as a Wetherbrooke Eventing Team member.  She will be competing in the starter division.  Karen will be taking our very own Ike the wonder pony to his first event ever!  He will be the tiny haflinger trotting the starter course!  We can’t wait to see him in action!  And last, but certainly not least—-Jen and Lucky —- doing the starter division together at their first ever event.  It is a moment we have all been waiting for.   Good luck to all of you—see you at the finish line (double clear, I hope —Ha Ha Ha)

Good days on the horizon for Team Wetherbrooke!

After the fall……   I purchased a new bit (which is great, by the way!), I had a few lessons with my jumping coach,  and put in several days of good jumping.  I decided to move Gus back down to Training level until we got ourselves together.  At Midsouth Pony Club HT at the KY Horsepark he was fantastic and got second place in open training.  We came in 2nd to a really nice horse and rider combination (who trains with none other than the super talented Leslie Law).  I couldn’t have been happier with Gus.  He put in the best xc and stadium phases that we have ever had.  I was feeling really good about being “back”.

Summer News

So much is going on that I have barely had time to breathe!  Last time I wrote we were just heading off to Greater Dayton HT.  It ended up being a great weekend for some, but not so good for others—namely myself!  Julie and Elizabeth had great success during the weekend.  It’s been so long that I’m having trouble remembering—so correct me if I’m wrong…but I think Julie ended up in 2nd place in the starter division and Elizabeth ended up in 4th in her Beginner Novice division.  They both did great!!!  Gus and I had some trouble all weekend.  I think he had some crazy reaction to a new supplement I was trying, and he was a lunatic from the time I got him to Twin Towers until we left.  To make a long story short—Dressage sucked, stadium was great, and I fell off after/during fence 8 on the xc course.  NO BREAKS + NO SUBMISSION= crash and burn.  Needless to say, I was very upset about our first big preliminary event.  I had had such high hopes……………….