The Grafton Riding Club Championships were something I had been looking forward to since my last Competition in April. Moo has been training super and his last competition was excellent so I was starting to feel that I may be in for a good weekend.
A lot has changed since April. I have moved the horses to their new home in New Italy. To see my new home visit the Facebook page Northern Rivers Equestrian Centre!
I am super lucky to have the facilities I have always dreamed of and my old retired boy Billy has his forever home now.
Life is good 🙂
I also am now fortunate enough to own a new horse, a beautiful Warmblood no less who is sired by San Rubin II and is a cool and calm fellow. He is 16.3hh, black and majestic and is currently competing Novice and Elementary.
His name is Costa, but to me he is perfect so I have called him Mr Perfect.
My beautiful Mr Perfect (San Costa WD) was to be ridden by his former owner for this event in the Novice and Elementary Championships. Don’t they look a treat !
I had my focuses on the Preliminary Championship and after our awesome scores of 68% and 65% in April I was pretty sure there would be a Rosette with my name on it.
However it was not to be, Moo just wasn’t in the game this weekend. I couldn’t work it out, I tried everything and it didn’t work. I was pretty upset. I later found out that his feed had been changed and he was high on life and sugar! He also had to travel with Costa, rather than usually alone, so there were a few differing factors that didn’t put us in the position for a successful weekend. Live and learn I guess.
The new float that I purchased is a total set up and I love it. It has a microwave and power points, a fridge, a cupboard for my things, a rug box, a swinging tack box and it is a two horse angle. It even has room for a shower!!
As I was there with my Bucky Rose and my heater I barely knew myself, it’s pretty good and it’s been a long time coming. I smile.
The horses were in bed and snuggly. 🙂 I checked on them at 8pm and midnight before finally resting.
Next morning Bucky and I were up early and he was helping mummy feed the horses. He’s a good boy and it had been far too long since we had been to a show together. I had missed him.
It was an awesome two days, I got to compete and spend time with my Bucky and I got to catch up with friends, so all in all it was a good time, despite not winning a single ribbon!
Costa went super in the Novice 2:2 and 2:3 with some scores of 64% and 63% and scoring two fifth places. He went wonderful in the Elementary on the Sunday and even though he was out of the ribbons I couldn’t have been prouder of him.
The other highlight of the weekend was catching up with Nathan Harvey, a super nice person and his horse Dom who is just everything you would expect a black stallion to be!
We are both super lucky to be sponsored by Peter Williams Riding Apparel and they have such wonderful products! Go check it out at http://www.pwra.com.au
That’s it from me,,, Happy Riding & Keep Smiling
As I type this I realise I should maybe call it ‘Tackless Tuesday’ and do my tackless video’s on Tuesday’s! Thoughts?
Years ago, in another life time, Billy and I did our Level 1 Parelli Program and started our tackless journey.
I guess along the way that was put on the back burner and I decided to stay with my goal of riding dressage. This is not a bad goal as dressage is the most awesome thing in the world. To spend my time dancing with my horses between a bunch of letters is a dream come true for me!!
Luckily, I have always trained my horses both in natural horsemanship and classical dressage so they have always known the basics of going tackless. It just will take that extra bit of time (and courage) to go tackless.
I don’t think it will take too much time to get them to where I want to go because they are at such a good place to begin with. That’s not because I am a genius or naturally gifted and I dare not use the words “horse whisperer” that seem to be way overused but I digress…. It’s because my horses have been taught respect and leadership and I am already the head of our clan. Lucky me 🙂
So, with nothing to lose, off I go!!
Fred is gentle, tactile and has such a fantastic personality. He is almost human and so responsive to me and my thoughts. I think that he will make a fantastic tackless horse.
It’s the end of an era with our Dressage days as he has arthritis now and so we move onto a new venture in our lives together. I have some awesome pictures for my wall though !! 🙂
Last year, as you will recall from my YouTube Channel, I decided to start tricks with him and I really saw a wonderful side to him. He is quite funny and he is so engaged when it comes to playing. He makes me laugh out loud when we are in a paddock alone and you can’t beat that!
So the other day I thought I’d start our tackless riding journey. I started of course at a sensible level and of course with a helmet!
The next step is to make sure your horse is tuned into you. I have already done the Parelli games with Fred years ago and of course he still remembers that.
We are not awesome at them, but they are in a good enough place for me to feel confident he has my back.
Fred also isn’t afraid of me in any way and I am not afraid of him at all. I think if you are going to ride tackless you really don’t want to be doing that with a horse that is afraid and you can’t be afraid of your horse either.
So then it’s time to get on…
And finally our first ride and practice changing direction…
I’m loving this adventure with Fred. I’m loving how happy he feels and how awesome it feels to be trusting my boy and allowing him to have a mouth with no bit.
He has taken to it like a fish to water and loving the easy going nature of it.
I loved how it felt to be so calm and just walk around and allow him to be free. He loved it.
Stay tuned for more tackless.
Happy Riding & Keep Smiling
I’m going to level with you all, I pretty much am sort of guessing how to do this. I watched a few YouTube videos and I figured, that looks like fun so I’ll do that!
Pretty much how I roll actually 🙂
So off I go to teach Fred the Spanish Walk… And so it began..
When I first got Fred he would put a leg in the air and hold it there and stare at it, it’s an anxiety release I think, a memory from being stabled and bored as a race-horse maybe, sort of like weaving.
It’s always been funny and it’s always been something to play with at times.
He used to do it when we halted in a dressage test. I wish they gave marks for it!
Would have gotten a few 9’s that way 😉
Here is a second attempt at it while I also show you my brand spanking new Jodphurs from Peter Williams Riding Apparel.
Okay, I am totally in love with these ones! Great stretchy material, warm yet not hot to wear. Not sure how they make material like that but it is heaven sent 🙂
They have a lovely gel seat and the colour is just the right shade of hot pink!! It really doesn’t get any better than that for me. Pink, comfortable, awesome quality, reasonable price. Sold!!!
They also come in Beige and Navy for those of you who feel the way I do about Pink, about Beige and Navy. 🙂
Happy Riding & Keep Smiling
On the weekend I went interstate and went to Melbourne. It wasn’t like a few weeks ago where I became a time-traveller when I went to Queensland, but it was still awesome.
Allow me to explain…
It was daylight savings a few weeks ago so I did travel back an hour when I crossed the New South Wales border into Queensland and then forward an hour upon my return.
Fear not, I didn’t meet my other self or change the present day, but it’s still fun to think that somehow my teenage fantasy of owning a Delorean and going to 1955 with Michael J Fox lives strong 🙂
But I digress…
There were no flights that I could catch that could meet my connecting train from Melbourne to Garfield so I caught the train the entire way.
Yes, that’s right I caught three trains in a row and people say I am not brave!
And so it began…
The train to Sydney was twenty five late so instead of 33 minutes between connections I had eight, but I made it.
I don’t sleep well at the best of times but put in the shakiest tracks in Australia and you had a girl with no sleep.
I had been up since 5am on the Thursday morning so by the time I hit Melbourne I had been awake for 26 hours, give or take a five minute doze here or there.
I hired a car and I then heard that flights into Melbourne had been cancelled due to haze so I got lucky that I didn’t fly or I would have been later. Yay!
I normally drive a Triton so trying to drive this small car on the Motorway was not my finest idea. There was a time there when I thought I would surely be killed as I was stuck between an oversize truck and a person who couldn’t drive!
What an awesome combination.
But then I saw the sign and I had made it 🙂
I like small towns.
I like how cute they are and how they have just enough of what you need so I went for an explore to see the sights.
I love the movies. They have a Theatre.
I love stores named after me..
I love stores that sell horse gear…
I love stores that sell lollies.
Okay, tell me where to sign, I could live here!
Then it was off for a lesson.
I felt so fortunate to be able to ride such a beautiful horse. She had been imported a few months earlier and had such a lovely nature.
It was different to ride, different than a OTTB and I had to take some time to adjust. I had never ridden in a double bridle before either so that was something new. I worked on some basics in this lesson and I really enjoyed it! It was super.
Then I went back for a little snooze. I had found this lovely little B&B behind the picture Theatre and I was sleepy after my big day.
I had far too many pieces of toast before I retired for the night watching Rules of Engagement.
The next morning I went to Brewsters Foodstore and had breakfast. It was quite nice. I had eggs on toast (poached), that is my staple breakfast if there are no Wheet Bix available.
I went back out and watched 4 or so lessons before I had my next one. This lesson was better than the day before. This horse was bold and charming and wonderful. He was more than I can ride at the moment, I can admit that, but he let me feel my mistakes and he was a horse that was patient enough to allow me to learn.
I did my first flying change ever, yeah late behind 😦 but still awesome!
I left there thinking it was a wonderful journey. I had pushed myself hard, wore myself out and I was exhausted, but sometimes those moments are the ones that keep you going and remind you how awesome living really is.
By the way, yes I did get a picture of this in my head a lot over the weekend!!!!!!!!
Happy Riding & Keep Smiling
A few weeks ago I travelled up north to see a Warmblood… See this is what happened…
I love my OTTB’s, I do. I love them so much and I love everything about them, but then I rode a Warmblood.
You know that moment when you get out of your 1977 Holden model car and Sebastian Vettel pulls up and says “get in”, it’s kind of like that !!!
As per normal I had to take photo’s of everything. I have this thing where I need to document stuff.
It was a super drive. The view was breathtaking. I felt so happy to be on an adventure… 🙂
Then I saw this gate. And at that moment, yes I decided, a gate like that is in my future.
How good would it be to drive through two horse head statues each time you leave your home!! Like seriously isn’t that the kind of stuff dreams are made of? I think yes
I needed to see some of the sights.
I can’t handle going somewhere and not getting all the obligatory pics of statues and stuff.
I love old buildings…
And there’s a statue. It’s a statue of Thomas Joseph Byrnes, a former Premier of Queensland.
So this is what I was going to see.
I know right, talk about ridiculously good looking!!
She rode wonderfully, although to be honest it’s harder to ride a gait like that then I thought. It’s so much more forward and has so much more cadence then a thoroughbred; sorry Moo…
I liked her, I really did, but I didn’t feel it!
I didn’t feel that thing I think i’m supposed to feel. When I meet a horse or ride a horse that I feel is “meant for me” I can feel it.
Does that sound a bit ridiculous? perhaps , but I’m a bit of a dreamer. I think it’s much like when you meet someone you love; I see my horses the same. I have to instantly love them.
It’s a shame because I know she is beautiful to ride and a wonderful horse and she will go places.
So I went to the pub for lunch and then took a picture at the Big Shears…
You have to take these kinds of photographs I reckon.
So my search continues for my Warmblood, but I am loving the adventure.
It is making me smile. …. 🙂
Happy Riding & Keep Smiling
This morning I was driving to work, yes I have to work on a Saturday. WHAT!!
Anyway, I digress.
I ended up singing this song as it was on the radio. I realised how much I liked it.
You know those moments, when you are in your own little world, singing and even when you are at traffic lights and someone sees you; you don’t stop!
No way man, you are in the middle of a chorus and the chorus much like the tides waits for nobody!
This morning I got to thinking…
What’s the go with people and their First-world issues?????
I’ve had my fair share of complaints from strangers and non-strangers today and it isn’t even midday!!
Allow me to set the scene…
This morning the train I use to commute to work wasn’t running, it had been replaced by a bus. There was a pretty good reason for this; there was a points failure, but that doesn’t need to be mentioned in order for this story to continue. I digress.
So I thought hmm, do I catch the bus or do I wait for the 7:35 to come. See these people that work in the transport industry are pretty savvy at getting people where they want to go. So I went up to the coffee store, got one to go and sat back on the platform to wait it out. I was listening to Puddle of Mud (spin you around, love that song) and this guy on the platform was just so upset.
I actually stopped my music to hear what he was saying.
You would think that he had been told the town had no water for the reaction he had!!!
To say it was over the top would be an understatement. I felt the need to put a stop to it, reactions like that can be infectious.
I sipped a sip of my morning coffee. Swallowed. Prepared myself for battle and calmly said, “It could be worse”.
He spun around to look at me, almost giving himself whiplash in the meantime and said “WHAT!!!”
I repeated “it could be worse”
I felt like I should use my hand in a Jedi type fashion at this point, using The Force to instruct him to be silent.
You will settle down. You will not lose it over this situation. There is nothing to discuss here.
But alas, I have no such powers!!
“How could it be worse???” he said. I couldn’t actually believe this sentence came out of his mouth but I felt the need to answer.
“Well” I said. “There are people in hospital right now but it isn’t you and me. There are people being held against their will or in an accident as we speak, but it isn’t you and me. There are people who do not have a job to commute to, but it isn’t you and me. It could be worse. Here we are sipping coffee in the morning sunshine. Yeah we will be a little late, but gee we are so much better off than some people”
I felt as though this stranger and I “had a moment”. He said “you are so right” (I was pretty sure I was too). He calmed down instantly and sat and started to go onto his Facebook on his phone, all the panic gone.
I almost have Jedi Powers!
There’s a peace with me today. A peace that this world would go on without me. That things can come and go, but really precious time is wasted with first-world issues.
Today, let us all think of everything we have. People that love us, horses to ride, jobs to go to and a calmness knowing that it ain’t that bad!
Hugs to all, Mel x
Hey Everyone, What can I say… Yesterday was awesome and just the kind of day I needed. 🙂
I had two tests to ride and I had a good draw. There was a last minute scratching so I ended up with both tests close together. Before I start I will say this though.
To all the people out there that drive at 60km in a 80km zone and then speed up to 120km when you get double lanes, I ask you to please stop this nonsense. It’s annoying and it’s purposeful and you just get me doing blogs where I talk about it.
Ok, i’ve had a rant and I feel so much better now 🙂
I had a warm up and Moo felt awesome. Responsive. Listening. Willing. Unicorn stuff really!
Got to the event at 09:07 and didn’t ride until 10:36 so I had plenty of time to make sure I got on all my awesome Peter Williams Riding Apparel gear and get a video up before we started.
The pre competition vlog is becoming a thing, see below:
The first test rode so well, I made a little error and put too much leg on into the Canter and not enough release of contact and my little man put in a buck! Apart from that the test rode wonderfully and I was so happy and knew I had done well.
I then rode the Preliminary 1:1, not my favorite test but he felt good underneath me and I was determined to put the error behind me in the Prelim 1:2 and get on with it and go out to do awesomely. I’m not one to just be at a comp. I go hard or go home. And here it is:
I’m super glad that Perseus will settle for Pegasus and doesn’t want Moo ! lol
I feel so happy that things are coming together and I am smashing goals left, right and centre.
Life is for the living and it is here for the taking and I have achieved two goals in 2018 and ridden to PB’s already. I smile. 🙂 I have so much love for this horse.
So, scores… We got a 65.9% in Preliminary 1:2 and 3rd overall and 68.4% n Preliminary 1:1 and took out 2nd. It was a tough field and to be in the placings with those scores shows how wonderful the combinations were on the day.
I gave Mooey Ganooey a well deserved bath, took out his plaits and loaded him to drive home. He was so happy and I would sneak a peak of him in the rear view mirror and see him dozing and I felt so happy.
Please see my end of day Vlog.
Wherever you are in the world I hope you are having a wonderful day. Smile; the world is beautiful and we are all so blessed to be here, doing what we love! Long may it continue
Happy Riding & Keep Smiling
Buck is the most wonderful friend and the best dog ever.
I know, I know there was Lassie and the littlest Hobo, but my guy is super special. I’m calling it.
Buck is a black and white border collie with just a hint of Irish wolfhound. He has the typical markings but with deeper brown eyes and a small pink patch on one of his front pads. To me, he is perfect.
This picture was the first night he was in my life.
The little girl is Chloe my best friends oldest child, who is now 21!! Where does the time go???
This was his first collar 💕
He has recently decided he likes balls.
After 11 years of not fetching a ball, only Frisbee’s and sticks in the ocean he decides to pick up a ball in 2016. It will never make sense to me, but he is funny like that!!
I have taught him to speak and he communicates with me most of the time. Except when he is grumpy. For example, say he wants some of my dinner and i say no, he will turn away from me and face into the wall and ignore me. If I try to talk to him he will pretend he cant hear me until I finally say he can have some food. The dog is a genius at getting what he wants!!
He grunts and sounds like he is oinking like a pig when he has a teddy bear in his mouth and if I have been away he yelps at me and tells me all of what happened while I was gone.
He has a love of cheese slices and toast that can only come from me. His favourite time is when I have a cup of tea and make Sao’s with butter. He likes his butter.
When I first got him I worked on an equestrian centre. I was trying to teach him to lead a horse with the help of my friend (pictured).
He has been with me through the good, the bad and the ugly and he never leaves my side. If I need him he is there and he loves me in a way I could only have hoped for.
His favourite place is the ocean. Not a creek, a river or a dam. That will not do. He loves the beach. He loves to fetch sticks, run, dig and lay in the sand. He loves to make sure that when he does dig he throws sand on mummy.
Of a night when he is sleepy, he loves to be kissed goodnight. He loves it when I sing him a lullaby and put my hand on his chest while he breaths.
He loves me laying on the floor and we stretch our paw and hand out and he holds my hand under his and looks at me and smiles. These moments are the best part of my day.
So, Happy 13th birthday my beautiful boy.
I love you buddy. Best 13 years ever x
Let’s get to 14 mate x x