Another big weekend for Team Wetherbrooke!

Yesterday I took 3 riders to a dressage show at the Riding Center in Yellow Springs.  The girls did great! My daughter Kate and her horse Celine placed 2nd in their first Intro  Test, and had a nice ride but did not place in the second Intro Test.  Elizabeth  and McCrae had 2 very solid tests and received a 4th place and a 2nd place respectively.  Adria and Lucky had a rough first ride, but made a great comeback to take 1st place in her Beginner Novice Test A.

Today I headed back to the Riding Center for the hunter show.  Adria and Lucky were fantastic, and they ended up getting “champion” in both the cantering crossrails and baby hunter divisions.  Great job, Adria!  Elizabeth and McCrae had the best show of their career so far (and he was extremely well behaved!) and ended up with a first place in future hunter, a first and a fourth place in Baby Hunter, and a 6th, 3rd, and 5th place in the Novice division.  Michelle and Oreo put together several great hunter rounds and ended up Champion in the Low Hunter division and Reserve Champion in Novice Hunter.  Way to go, Michelle! 

Congratulations on a spectacular weekend, girls!

Rhyland’s first trip out

Rhyland went to his first show today….not as a competitor, but as a spectator.  We took him to the Riding Center dressage show just to see how he would be out in public.  He was fantastic!  One of my students, Karen, rode him around the grounds for quite a while and got to perform his first 1/2 circle at the canter under saddle (since the track, of course).  She was really excited.  He was way more quiet and easy to deal with than I expected, and I plan on taking him to the Riding Center hunter show tomorrow to ride in some warm-up classes.  My goal (which may prove to be unrealistic) is to have him ready to do starter at Gemwood in July?????  If not Gemwood, then Octoberfest at the Kentucky Horse Park in October.  We’ll see.

Rhyland’s new career started today

Tonight after I was done teaching lessons, I groomed and tacked up Rhyland to prepare him for what I thought might be the night for his first ride.  He had not been ridden since he came off of the track in 2008.  I lunged him for a little bit, and then had Jeff hold him while I slowly climbed into the saddle.  After a pretty uneventful few minutes of being ponied around the arena by Jeff, I asked him to unhook us from the lunge line so that I could ride him on my own.  He listened to leg pressure and I could actually steer him  fairly well. I was pleasantly surprised.  So now begins his new career as an eventer.  We have a really long way to go, but I hope to have him out to a show sometime this summer.  More on him as he progresses.  He is going to be really cool.

Greater Dayton Horse Trials–A Great Way To Start The Season!

Last weekend I took 5 horses to Twin Towers Park to participate in the first horse trials of the season.  Gus and I completed our first preliminary together with ZERO jumping penalties on the cross country course!  We were a little slow x-c and received some time penalties, but I wasn’t riding for time.  We put in a decent dressage test, but the scores didn’t show what I had hoped they would.  Gus jumped a great stadium round, but unfortunately his idiot rider forgot to make the tight turn to fence #7, and ended up with some penalty points—He, however, jumped really well.  I couldn’t be more happy with the way he went this weekend.  I am ready for our next prelim. in 2 weeks at the Kentucky Horse Park!  This time I will be ready to compete—-not just complete  (okay, that was unintentional, but very corny).

Julie and Sapphie started the season in Beginner Novice.  Julie had a good dressage test ( on a very lazy, hot pony) and went on to have a double clear stadium round.  It might not have been the greatest stadium ride the pair ever had, but it put Julie into ribbon contention.  The highlight of the pair’s weekend was the cross-country!  Julie and Sapphie had the greatest x-c ride ever, and the pair ended up in 5th place out of 14 riders.  Congratulations, Julie!

Michelle and Oreo (also competing in BN) had the best dressage test they have ever had!—which was Michelle’s goal for the weekend.  The pair then went on to have a double clear stadium round.  The team had an unfortunate miscommunication at fence #4 on the cross-country course which ended in a fall for Michelle.  Luckily everyone walked away uninjured and ready to get some more jumping schools under their belt.  Nothing like a good fall to help teach some valuable lessons—-I should know because last year I had one at the very same show!  It proved to be the best thing that could have ever happened to my season last year!

Jessica and Aragon competed in the starter division at  their first horse trials this weekend .  The pair put in a great dressage test which landed them in 2nd place.  Way to go, Jessica!  After a well-fought fight in the stadium and a few rails, the team then went on to ride a nice x -c course.  They had one refusal which put the team into 7th place overall.  Aragon proved that with a little time under his belt and a few more shows, he is going to be one to watch!

Elizabeth and McCrae (also riding starter) had a nice dressage test and an almost clean stadium round (with just one rail).  After a really rough start to the cross-country (like he tried to twirl her across the field out of the start box and take her back to the barn), he ended up going clean x-c and putting them into 2nd place.  Luckily for her, the start box staff was extremely understanding and allowed me to catch them and send them back out on course!

Congratulations to all of our riders!  And a special thank you to our grooms and helpers for helping to make this such a great weekend–Jen (groom of the world), Julia, Jessica, and the Pony Pals.


Getting Ready For Greater Dayton Horse Trials

We are on the final countdown until Greater Dayton.  Five of us and our horses will be competing at Twin Towers Park in Fairborn on Saturday and Sunday.  Gus and I will be trying to complete our first Prelim. of the season.  Michelle (and Oreo) and Julie (and Sapphie) will be competing in Beginner Novice.  Jessica and Aragon are doing  Starter in what will be their first ever horse trials.  Elizabeth and McCrae will compete in their first horse trials together at Starter.  We are looking forward to getting the season started.  I just hope that Gus comes ready to listen, and remembers all that we have learned from Leslie!  Ride times will  be posted on the Greater Dayton website which is sometime later today.  We will be spending the next 2 days reviewing our dressage tests, riding some courses, clipping, bathing ( and bathing and bathing-for Gus), and cleaning all of our tack in preparation for leaving here on Friday.  More details later……………

Weekend Success For Wetherbrooke

The Wetherbrooke Farm Show Team had a fantastic start to the 2010 show season.  On Saturday, we braved the 100 mile per hour winds at Twin Towers Park in order to get our 4 horses and riders around all of their hunter courses.  The girls and their horses did a great job!  Adria and her horse “Lucky” ended up with  1st, 4th, and 2nd place ribbons in her Cantering Crossrails division giving her a Reserve Champion placing.  In Baby Hunter she earned 2 1st place ribbons in her over fences classes and won Champion without even riding in the flat class!  Way to go, Adria!  Michelle and “Oreo” had the best courses of their career so far and won 2 1st places in their Novice Over Fences classes which earned them a Champion ribbon. That pair also placed 4th and 5th in the Low Hunter division.  Jessica and her horse “Aragon” finished the day with 2 blue ribbons in Future Hunter and a Reserve Champion in that division.  Lastly, Elizabeth and McCrae received a 5th place in Cantering Cross-rails, a 2nd in Future Hunter, a 2nd and a 4th in Baby Hunter, and a 3rd and 5th place in Novice Hunter.  We are very excited about the progress our riders and horses made over the winter months.  Congratulations, girls!

On Sunday, Mother’s Day 2010, I received an awesome Mother’s Day present from my Kate.  She competed in her very first dressage show EVER .  It was also her first show on her new mount “Celine”.  Not only did she ride 2 great tests, but she was calm, cool, and collected.  I even saw a few smiles cross her face.  She and Celine won 1st place in Intro Test 1 Jr., and the pair placed 3rd in Intro Test 2 Jr.  What a great start to her season!  Michelle and Oreo rode the 2 best dressage tests they have ever ridden, and ended up with a blue and a red ribbon.   She scored a 68% in the Beginner Novice Test that she will be riding at the event next weekend.   All that hard work is paying off, Michelle!  After “twirling” their way around the farm in true “Dancing Horse Farm” style, McCrae and Elizabeth danced their way to two 3rd places in Beginner Novice Test A and Intro Test 2 Senior.   Congratulations, Team Wetherbrooke!  You guys were fantastic!

A busy weekend in store for the Wetherbrooke Farm Show Team

Tomorrow morning the trailers will  pull out at 9:30am to head to Twin Towers Park in Fairborn for the first hunter show of the season.  The horses and riders competing in tomorrow’s hunter show are Jessica and Aragon, Michelle and Oreo, Elizabeth and McCrae, and Adria and Lucky.

On Sunday, we will head out to Dancing Horse Farm to compete in the Dressage show that was postponed from last weekend.  The horse and rider combinations  that will be competing in that show are Kate and Celine, Elizabeth and McCrae, and Michelle and Oreo.

We wish all of our riders the best of luck this weekend!

Day 14 of the “non-diet” & the thoughts that go with it

Day 14 started out like any other day, full of promise and hopes for losing more poundage.   I ate a banana with a little bit of peanut butter on it.  I didn’t even have time for a drink.  I went outside to get Gus ready to go to our lesson out at Trails End.  I groomed him and loaded him in the trailer at about 11.  At my mom’s I grabbed a small bit of turkey (no bread) , a few small cubes of colby cheese, and a really cold COKE—-and I liked it.  Wade spent a few hours at my mom’s house while I took a lesson (which went extremely well).    After my lesson, I stopped at McDonald’s to get a water with lemon (and one packet of splenda in it) and a VERY SMALL vanilla ice cream cone.  I say VERY SMALL because the boy behind the counter had no clue how to make a good cone, and he ended up just making a couple of vertical loops instead of nice horizontal spirals.  After I picked Wade up at my mom’s, I went home to do some farm chores.  I unloaded Gus, fed horses, turned all the horses out, cleaned Gus’s stall, and did a few other odd jobs.  Kate got off the bus at 4:15, just in time to tack her horse up for a lesson with Elizabeth.  I watched some of the lesson while Wade and I played with Alligator.  My mom came at 6 to take the kids  for their birthday outing to Bob Evans and ” How to Train Your Dragon”.  Jeff came home with Flying Pizza.  I ate 2 pieces and drank Mt. Dew with it—-one part rebellion… one part celebration.  I spent the rest of the night outside doing a little mowing, a little work in my barn office, a little helping with lessons, and a lot of talking with people at the barn.  The kids came home at almost 9:30pm.  They had a blast with their granny, and were headed to bed by 10pm—–just in time for me to start making 30 birthday brownies for Kate to share with her class tomorrow.  I did lick the spoon once.  It was a nice way to end the 2 weeks.

After thoughts*********

Did the diet work?  I think I lost close to 5 pounds in 2 weeks- not the 15 I was looking for, but I may have been a little unrealistic in my expectations.

Was it worth it?  It is not a difficult way to live.  The hardest part is trying to remember what I ate so that I could write about it later.

Will I continue the non-diet?  I will definitely be able to do this as a new way of life.  I am not the best at figuring out what foods I can/should eat, but it will get easier as I go.

What has been the best part of the non-diet experience?  I think overall it has not affected my life in any adverse way.  I do not feel like I am dieting at all, but rather strategizing my food intake.  I have enjoyed the writing that has accompanied the diet.  It has given me yet another goal to achieve in my crazy life.

What has been the worst part of the experience?  I thought it would be the fact that I could only have 1 pop a day, but I really could have given that up also.   I think the two worst parts for me were the fact that I never have enough groceries in the house to have a variety to choose from, AND the way I felt after eating eggs for days on end.

Overall, I would recommend this to anyone.  I don’t really feel better.  I just know that eventually the effort will pay off.  I get discouraged when I don’t get dramatic and immediate results (I am sure that comes as a bit of a shock to those of you that know me ).  I will continue on my quest to get another 10-15 pounds off by mid summer.  I just won’t be giving you all the minute to minute updates anymore.  I know you will be sad to see the end to the daily “non-diet” blog, but I will still keep you up to date on the more important issues in my life like………….Does Wade get more squishies for his birthday????  Will Kate’s birthday “Mardis Gras” continue even into next week?  Will little Alligator ever grow big enough to not be able to slip through our fence at will?  Will Rhyland ever get ridden?  Or did we just collect another really expensive pet?

Stay tuned……………………………………..

Rhyland starts his new career today!

Tomorrow marks the 2nd full week since Rhyland came to live at our farm.  In those 2 weeks, he has been clipped, trimmed, brushed, bathed, trailer loaded, de-wormed, vaccinated, tied, cross-tied (not so successfully I might add!), fitted with tack, lunged, and worked on the ground.  Today I put a saddle on him for the first time.  Because he doesn’t yet cross tie well, it took quite a little while.  I lunged him in full tack and boots today, and was extremely pleased by what I saw.  After the bucking bronco show ended, he actually looked pretty fancy.  He is light on his front end, clever with his back end, and extremely balanced both directions.  When I was finished lunging him, I hand walked (jumped) him over several jumps in the arena.  He doesn’t seem to mind much at all.  Then I took him over to the mounting block and draped myself over his back to see what he would do.  He seemed pretty ok with that.  He hasn’t been ridden since he came off the track over a year ago.   This might be his lucky week.

Day 13 of the “non-diet”

Today has been another fairly good day for the “non-diet”.  For breakfast I ate a banana with some crunchy peanut butter on it.  I just couldn’t stand to do the eggs.  I drank 1/2 of a diet green tea with it.  I was outside with Wade by 10:30 to teach a  lesson.  At 12 I took Wade to my in-laws and on my way home stopped at Skyline to get my Mt. Dew fix.  Along with my “nectar of the gods”, I got a southwestern chicken wrap with no salsa or sour cream, and a teeny, tiny bag of little crackers.  When I got back home I did a jumping school with Gus and then took him on a “light hack” down the road and back.  I also lunged Rhyland, fed horses, cleaned some tack, did some other barn chores, and taught 3 lessons.  I had another diet tea and a string cheese for a snack in between lessons.  I was back in the house by 7:30.  I browned some hamburger and made myself a medium sized taco salad (lettuce, meat, cheese,  and taco sauce).  I finished off one of my diet teas with it.  I ran out of lemon water and couldn’t find the kind I like at Wal-Mart, so I need to get some more.  For dessert I will have a few peanut butter M&M’s.

Tomorrow is my last official day of the “non-diet” experiment.  I will do an official weigh-in on the morning of what would be day 15.   Fred told me that it would be a slow process due to the nature of the “non-diet”.  I have a feeling that if I were a man I would have already lost 20 pounds.  I think that this new style of eating will be a good one for me in the long run, but I would have liked to have quicker-more obvious results.  I purposely took my normal runs/walks out of the equation these past 2 weeks so that I could get a real picture of what this diet would do for me.  The first thing I am going to do on day 15 (after the weigh in) will be to start my runs/walks again.   I will have my official (that’s funny in and of itself!) opinion of the experiment tomorrow evening.  I know that you all will be waiting with baited breath.