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Thursday, December 26, 2013

Farrah and Sinead Christmas Update

Merry Christmas from the RedHead!

Last weekend I got to go up and see how Farrah and Sinead were getting on.  The Redhead has never looked more relaxed and happy in her work.  Sinead is pleased with their partnership so far and we are all so excited for the upcoming season!  

Sinead will be jetting off to Mexico (there's a pesky little thing like a wedding occurring in early January) but I can't wait to see these two competing this winter!  Have a great New Year's everyone and the Redhead sends her love!

Friday, December 6, 2013

And so the whirl wind weekend begins!

The Redhead looking very red.

I always look forward to December....for me it typically means that the work load at my day job is a bit lighter, the ponies are all freshly clipped and we get to enjoy riding in cooler temperatures.  I was rather envisioning that packing up all of Farrah's finery and assorted gear would happen in nice cool weather at a pace I could enjoy.  Apparently the gods above want to make sure I am way off base, because that is not what has transpired this December.

I booked one Dressage TD gig at White Fences (14/15), but I didn't really worry as Farrah was scheduled to leave the 5th of December to join Sinead Halpin Eventing in Ocala.  After a few phone emails and calls we realized Sinead will be at the USEA convention, and moved  Farrah's trip to Ocala to the 9th. No problem, everything was still trucking along as I slowly wash and pack various items in the trailer so that nothing super important gets left behind.

I booked a clinic with Lisa Barry for my farm on December 8th.  I was super excited to ride with Lisa and managed to fill the clinic with 12 rides!  Then I get a phone call from a friend in Orlando, the TD that she hired can't come because they worked the same dates for the past two years and USEF requires show managers to vary their TD's, so by the way can you come to Clarcona to work 7/8?  Now I have to miss my own clinic and there goes the weekend time I had set aside to finish packing for Farrah!

I was still feeling super organized on Wednesday, while working on a lovely property in south Florida (field biologist), when I got a phone call from Canada.  Lee (a dressage rider and person interested in one of my young horses) called and had found out a friend was going to FL and oh, by the way, they could transport Connor back to Canada with them on the 15th.  Could I possibly get the export papers together and arrange vetting and get him to Port Canaveral for a 6am departure on the 15th?  I am pretty sure I answered "Sure, no problem" but in reality I was thinking "Wait, what and OMG!  This will never happen in time."

My fantastic vet met me that night at 8pm to fill out USDA paperwork for a one way equine border crossing. Thankfully, Connor's coggins is less than six months old and with luck, his USDA paperwork will be back by Wednesday of next week.  At this point, I was still wondering how on earth I am going to get a yearling from my farm in Plant City to Port Canaveral (or some close by farm) while working in Loxahatchee, not to mention I have yet to finish packing Farrah's stuff or laundering her blankets!  I was already using some vacation time on Monday to deliver Farrah, and asking my non-horsey husband to load and deliver a baby who has trailered a whopping three times in his life seemed like a lot to ask!  Once again, I totally lucked out in that one of my college aged boarders has a birthday the weekend of the 14/15 and is planning on going home to visit family.  She also owns a truck and trailer and lives 20 minutes from the Port!  Another college boarder at the farm dates a young man whose mother just happens to have a quarter horse breeding facility also near the Port, so not only does Connor have a ride to the east side of the state, he has overnight lodging!  I am still not sure how we managed to pull all this together, but it actually looks like it might work!

Now all I have to do is finish packing the Redhead's gear, with a Christmas Parade tonight (daughter is singing on a float) and working the Clarcona show all day Saturday and Sunday, while missing out on my own clinic with Lisa.  When we hit the road with Farrah around noon on Monday it will be short of a miracle if I don't leave something behind.

Somehow next week I need to find time to remind a yearling he does actually load in a trailer, after delivering the Redhead to Sinead.  I get to work something like 20 straight days by working the White Fences show, so if you see me after the 15th and are wondering where the farm Christmas decorations are, I hope to get around to it before the New Year!

I am looking forward to meeting Sinead and crew, seeing friends at the Clarcona and White Fences shows, and as my daughter says, "GAME ON".

Friday, October 25, 2013

New Beginnings for the RedHead

So last month I told everyone about the juggling I started:  I threw some things out there to see what kind of response I would get if I offered Farrah for sale/lease/syndication/sponsorship on Sport Horse Nation (Thanks!).  I am not sure what kind of response I was expecting, but let me say I was overwhelmed!  In a good way; qualified riders with a lot to offer contacted me from all over.  I asked myself, this is a pony, my pony, not a full sized horse, and I have all these riders interested?   It was so awesome and thrilling and kinda scary at the same time.  

I had some excellent offers, from 4* riders down to 15 year olds wanting to ride their first preliminary......foreign and domestic riders.  In the end, I chose the rider who I thought would fit Farrah's personality and riding style best and who impressed me with their professionalism.  Even though she couldn't come for a test ride due to a bum ankle, she sent her good friend Lisa Barry (who did a great job on Farrah) to test ride Farrah and called me that night with a proposal I could not refuse.  

I am so proud to say that Forrest Nymph, aka Farrah or the Red Head, will be ridden by Sinead Halpin (SHE) beginning in December.   Farrah's former owner, Lynn Simpson, and breeder, Leslie Feakins of Trevelyan Farm, are super excited as well.  Black Dog Farm (where Farrah resides) will miss her Highness, but we will have a great team to cheer on this winter. 

Thanks so much to Lauren DeNeve for putting the excellent preliminary miles on Farrah.  A special shout out to Nataly Pacheco for helping me keep Farrah ridden well and to Lauren DeLalla for helping make this connection to Sinead.

Go Red Head and Team SHE!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The Red Head's Future Will Be?

Farrah is probably wondering what the H*** I am doing, riding her in the dressage arena instead of just doing some of the fitness work.  I am trying not to undo all the lovely work Lauren has put into the pony. Sometimes life doesn't go the way you had it all mapped out; we all know with horses that happens more often than not.   Horses can get injured, lose interest or get soured.  In Farrah's case, mom ran out of money to spend campaigning a horse at the upper levels. :-(

It's not that the unplanned is always bad, often times change is good and leads to new and exciting opportunities.  While I can't say much right now, I can let everyone know that I threw up a bunch of juggling balls.  They are still up in the air, but if I manage to catch them all (or even just some of them!) then I will have news for you.  To keep Farrah competing at the upper levels, Farrah will be moving on to both a new rider/ownership for the 2014 season.  While I will miss Her Highness in my barn, rest assured you will still hear regularly about the Red Head's exploits in eventing.  Farrah's meant for bigger and better things than I can offer her on my own.  Farrah wouldn't have gotten so far in this journey without Lauren taking the reins and showing her at Preliminary, so thank you very much for the lovely riding!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Back in the Groove

It has been a hot summer in Florida.  While most of the rest of the country spends their summers out riding and competing, here in the land of wilting humidity we use summer as our down season.  Translation for the Farrah pony - working on dressage.  If you recall from previous posts, while Farrah is quite talented at dressage, the entire reason she is now eventing is that she flunked out of a super posh Dressage Barn at the age of 5.

I am sure Farrah thinks this is the summer from h*ll, as Lauren and Farrah worked on submission and all things dressage.  The pair have even attended a clinic or two and while their dressage is greatly improving, Farrah still lets Lauren know that dressage is still Farrah's least favorite phase.

Now that fall is in the air (we get a whiff from time to time of slightly drier, cooler weather) we decided some of us should go school cross country at Longwood Farm in Ocala.  Longwood boasts lots of shade trees, hills and big jumps at a spectacular farm two hours north of us.  What more could we ask for?  Farrah and some of her barn mates made the journey on Monday.

Farrah had an absolute BLAST!  While she did try to bolt off after a jump (or 3, or 5??!!) Farrah gamely took whatever jump was presented and clearly thought we had been withholding all the fun stuff for far too long.  Good thing for Farrah she gets to go to the Florida Horse Park this weekend.  Farrah will be subjected to a Prelim A dressage test before she gets to jump a few stadium rounds, but Sunday they will head out to school cross country again.  Here's to next Sunday, when I am sure Farrah will once again show us why she likes to event so much!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The Red Head as a Ponying Pony?

Who Knew?

Take a fit CCI* pony, give her some time off for R&R, and then make her the lead pony for ponying a six year old on her own pony......does that sound like a recipe for disaster?  I'll admit, at first I was hesitant, but Brylie REALLY wanted to have me take her on a trail ride, mounted, and Anneke was already on Lucy (who I thought might make a better lead pony than my four year old Mia).  When I couldn't come up with a really good reason not to at least try (sans child, of course) and it worked quite well, I took Brylie out on Tara and it was FUN.  And I think Farrah actually thought it was mildly entertaining.  I was too busy watching Tara/Brylie to prevent Farrah from turning the trail ride into a never ending buffet at 4', so Farrah thought the whole thing was simply loads of fun.  The leadline tow strap also provided Farrah with plenty of opportunity for her to reinforce to Tara that the Red Head is #1.

It is now July and time for Farrah to buckle down and go back to work.  How to figure out a way to assist with the $$ for future shows/training/travel?  Anyone want some embryos or have any other great sponsorship ideas?  The fabulous Red Head needs some break out ideas to rejoin the competition fray; the bank of Beth is out of money.  Any Eventing Pony Supporters out there or fundraising ideas for Lauren and I?  Feel free to email us and let us know if you have a great idea to get this superstar eventing pony back in the competition arena and aimed at a Two Star!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Summer Doldrums

I think Farrah despises summer as much as I do.  The oppressive heat and humidity of Florida in the summer time is bad enough, but add to that spending rides working on getting Farrah fit enough to tackle some serious dressage work come July 1 with Lauren and well, you have a Red Head who is really bored.  Seriously, Farrah is thinking she must have died and gone to some horsey hell where there is simply no.jumping.ever.again.

No jumping (and I am trail riding her a bit, not drilling her in the arena) is like taking her to an amusement park with all kinds of great rides but instead of riding them, Farrah has to watch the other kids playing.  Farrah has made it abundantly clear to me that as far as the red head is concerned, this has to Stop Now, or I risk complete meltdown.  I admit, I caved.

Cantering past a small fence I thought, oh what the hell, why not?  I presented the next one to Farrah and I had the most fun loving pony back, joyfully taking small fences and being so good!!  I know Farrah was barely able to contain her enthusiasm, but I swear if I could have seen her face going over the jumps, she would have been smiling!

From Farrah to Lauren, I can just about hear her say "where the hell have you been" when Lauren gets the fit pony back in July!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Bored, fit pony

So what does a fit pony do during R & R?  Apparently the Redhead makes up new things for entertainment.  I guess I am glad she didn't start weaving or cribbing !!!

I walked by her stall many times, trying to figure out where that sound was coming from.  It then dawned on me that it was Farrah so I went in and sure enough, she is flapping her lip on the feeder.  Lovely that Farrah also chose to slowly start dismantling her feeder.  Guess she wants a new one!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Post CCI Update with an Awesome Stadium Picture!

Photo above taken by Kristen Bateman.

I would just like to say "THANKS KRISTEN" as the photo above just rocks!  The fences are 1.15 meters (3'9) and Farrah is just as happy to stay tucked and clear them....that pony sure loves the jumping phases.  If only we could convince the Redhead that agreeing more on the dressage phase is not the end of the world, her overall scores would greatly improve.  Our summer project....DRESSAGE.

Post CCI, Farrah had a bit of swelling midway down her left front leg...probably from a hind foot strike on the XC.  The vet suggested we wait 10 days and then ultrasound, so Dr. Richter ultrasounded Farrah this morning.  Great news!  While Farrah is still tender and a bit off, there is no tendon tear or any ligament problem.  She has some bruising and inflammation, which means we will continue with the icing 2x a day and stall rest, hand grazing and limited "small paddock" turnout and then re-ultrasound in 4 weeks.  Farrah was due for her R&R anyway, I just hoped more of it would be outside grazing!  Oh well.  Farrah is still pretty fit, looks fantastic and continually tried to nip at the vet tech assistant during the vet work up.  In true Redhead fashion, Farrah played up the evil pony routine a bit.  Now to occupy that pony brain for a month without 24/7 turnout!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Show Jumping at the CCI* and some Cross Country Pics

Soraya (JD) got a lovely sequence of the water complex and Farrah at the CCI*.  Lauren said Farrah was fantastic through the water.  I will include the sequence for you, it was really fun to look at the sequence of pictures!

Another good friend and a fantastic groom for the CCI*, Kristen, has some really fantastic Stadium pics on her camera, so I will make sure they make it in the next blog update.  Farrah was really good in the SJ, bold and very rideable.  Lauren and Farrah had one rail, but Lauren said it is hard to be clean in the combinations when Farrah lands so far on the backside of a fence that a normal horse stride ends up TOO SHORT for the pony!  It's a good problem to have.  The announcer introduced Farrah as the "Pony XC Machine" :)  Farrah got her completion ribbon and finished 40th.

And now for your viewing pleasure:

The remainder of the horses competing for Black Dog Farm and DeNeve eventing finished like this: 

Cindy One and Lauren DeNeve, 5th in the Ocala CCI*!!!
Random Chance and Kelly Schutz, 1st in the Training Rider
Black Dog's Top of the Morning and Beth Davidson, 2nd in the YEH 4-year old test.

It was a great weekend!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

When It Doesn't All Come Together

Sometimes it just doesn't all work out, even with the best preparation.  After a great show jumping school with Debbie Stephens and a xc school with Leslie Law, Farrah appeared surprised by the fence at 5b and did a fly by.  The remainder of the course rode really well for them and they tackled the water complex fantastically in stride.

Now we pull on our big girl panties and tackle the show jumping with a look to the future.  Farrah will have her planned time off and spend the summer focusing on dressage while we map out a fall strategy.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Dressage Down, XC Saturday in the CCI*

Farrah's Pretty Braids for the Jog.

Unfortunately Farrah was a real redhead for dressage.  We knew it was a distinct possibility as this phase remains her least favorite aspect of eventing.  Farrah started by breaking to a canter in the trot lengthening.  Farrah also broke in one of the counter canters.  She is currently tied for 21st (her barn mate Cindy who loves dressage is currently 4th!).  

At least Farrah's favorite phases remain!  The weather has been hot but overcast and the cross country course looks tough but fun!  More updates on Saturday.  Go Eventing.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Final Countdown to the CCI*

Farrah's USEF National Passport

I applied for Farrah's passport in mid-January, after reading online at that you should plan on three months to get a national passport.  Sometimes I am not so good at the planning part, but I decided if we really were thinking of ending the spring season with a CCI*, I didn't want the lack of a national passport to be the deciding factor!  I applied, paid the fee, paid to upgrade Farrah to USEF Life and low and behold, I got a passport two weeks later.  Cool!  Then I sat down to read the accompanying material and it was a bit of OMG.  Series of shots, ok.  Proof of said shots with stamps, a microchip, markings to fill in, send it back for approval.........I called my friend Jody (owner of Cindy) and said you really do need to get on it, the USEF is not kidding when they say it might take awhile!

I called my vet, and he came for the first series of shots and to microchip.  First, he had the wrong brand of microchip, then the wrong stamp (no address, USEF needs vet address on stamp).  Fast forward a week, we got the right stamp!  Yay!  Then we wait until we have the right number of days between the shots, do round two of shots and have the proper microchip installed.....Good.  Stamp passport, sign everything, all set, right? 

Then the vet and I get to the markings we have to fill out on the passport.  My vet says to me I hope you have lots of practice paper :0  What an excercise that turned out to be!  And my friend Jody is asking what is so hard, Cindy has only her star?  Ahem, Jody, what about the small scar on her hock, the white hairs on her lower lip, the cyst on her shoulder!  Confering with vet/USEF and yes, all that has to be on Cindy's passport.  I made the judgement call with all of Farrah's markings to fax some attempts to the ever patient Emily at USEF.  Finally we were in agreement with the FEI language (no socks/stockings, you have to describe the white markings with correct anatomical placement) that the vet could mark up the official passport and send it in for approval.  That was last week (only 2 1/2 weeks prior to the CCI*!).  I got said passport in the mail today. 

I also forgot about the FEI number, until the show secretary sent me the nicest email reminder that she had not gotten an FEI number from my entry.  I logged on to USEF and presto, the one thing that was easy, fifteen minutes later Farrah has an FEI number.

So, are we ready?  Apparently not completely as far as Lauren is concerned.  Now, I know that Farrah's tail is a bit on the wild side.  I have so far resisted Lauren's efforts to have me conform to the eventing tradition of pulling the sides of Farrah's tail.  I am not sure why I resisted, but I loved her full wild tail.  Lauren was not keen on jogging down the path with "that tail".  Sigh.  I had Kat come over and try to pull Farrah's tail the proper way.  Can we say "Epic Fail"?  Since losing Kat's head to a hoof is not in the plan,  Kat resorted to clippers.  Below is the finished product:

Farrah's tail looks great from the back, but from the side, with the lighter flaxen hairs shaved off, the sides of her tail are an odd cream color.  It looks like we bleached her tail bone on the sides.  Who knows, maybe that will grow on me? 

Only one week left before we ship out to Ocala, and in between then and now we have a stadium school with Debbie Stephens, a XC school with Leslie Law and final dressage tune-up with Bill Woods.  Let the bleeding of the bank of Beth begin!

Monday, March 18, 2013

The Redhead Version of Tail Propulsion

We took some young horses to the Florida Horse Park for their schooling show last weekend.  We had one slot left in the trailer, so Farrah came along to show in a few dressage classes.  Much to Farrah's surprise, she and Lauren got to practice the CCI* test and the Intermediate A with a double bridle.  The judge was simply fantastic and told Lauren to school away.  Farrah was astounded that for the first time ever in a competition setting, Lauren COULD throw in a 10 meter circle ad lib and Farrah figured out that her normal "oh cool, we are showing and I get to run off with Lauren" wasn't going to work out.  Mission accomplished. :)

We also stayed overnight so the greenbeans could school cross country the next day.  That meant Farrah got to do gallop sets at the FHP with Mattie (Lauren's working student).  Farrah had a great time and Mattie finished the gallops laughing that Farrah kept trying to divert to jumps.  I mean, why else would they be out there, right?

Farrah and Mattie ended with a little splash through the water and Farrah was super good.  Many thanks to Kristen Bateman Novak for taking such great shots of the Redhead for her fans!!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Rocking Horse 3 Cross Country Video

Photographic evidence that yes, I actually did compete the Farrah pony.

Even though I am no longer the one showing Farrah at the shows, I still get to enjoy some of the fitness training as Farrah and Lauren prep for the CCI*.   Hmm, maybe enjoy is not the right word, as after the interval canter sets, my calves are burning and I end up with horrid rubs on my right calf from the stirrup leather.  (Probably telling me that I am not riding in balance since only my right leg is affected, but I digress).   Farrah greatly enjoys her gallops and in general is a really good girl about them.  She takes special joy in trying to either catch the grasshoppers that fly up with her mouth or knock them sideways with her head, I can't tell which!  I guess it is just one more amusement for Farrah when we gallop the neighbor's property.

Last week on the Redhead's blog I put up the video from RH 2.  Below is Rocking Horse 3, starting with fence 5.  On the ground, this combination looked quite intimidating but Farrah and Lauren make it look easy :)  Enjoy!


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Who wants to see the VIDEO?

I bet you have been wondering about that Rocking Horse II video that I said I have.  Now, those of you who know me, they realize that I am not what you would call Tech Savy.  For those of you whose only exposure to Farrah and I is through this blog, I will let you in on a secret.  Not only am I not great on the computer, I am also cheap.  See, I paid for the full DVD from the Rocking Horse II show, and I was bound and determined that I should not shell out any additional money to pay to put the videos on Youtube.  I mean, how hard can it be to post them online, right?

  After nearly two weeks of attempting to download the video to Youtube from the RNS DVD, I gave up.  I even asked Alan to help me (my husband) and he couldn't figure out how to separate the videos into each segment.  After multiple nights spent on the MAC, that is supposedly very:

 1. Userfriendly

 2.  Outfitted with the appropriate software.

 Alan handed me back the DVD and said just pay them to upload it.  I finally broke down and asked RNS to upload the video to Youtube for me, for your viewing pleasure.  Being able to share the video in my house from the laptop lost it's charm!


Monday, March 4, 2013

And the RedHead Wins One!

Four prelims down and they are all national qualifying scores for the CCI*!!!  To top it all off, Farrah managed to win her division of prelim at Rocking Horse III with nothing added to her 33.9 in Dressage.  Cold weather and high winds did not discourage Farrah at all, who also surprised me by loping in easily at 20 seconds under the optimum time.  Lauren said Farrah found another gallop gear this preliminary and they eased up 4 from home.  And here I was thinking Intermediate time might be hard to make.  I guess not!

If Farrah would just let Lauren lead for their dressage dance, we'd be able to drop those scores a bit.  Farrah broke in one of the counter canters for a 4 and then pulled a few 7's and 8's.  Farrah is capable of so much more, but once she trots down centerline she likes to "play" a bit more than ideal for a dressage test.

Farrah's barn mate Cindy, who has finished 2nd in her last two prelims, finished in 5th, with one rail added to their dressage score of 31.....super pleased with both girls and now we are CCI bound in April, barring any unplanned horsey fun (we all know how much pre-planning can be undermined by our equine partners!).

I leave you with Farrah's new gear :)

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Dr. Porter Green Lights the CCI*

Most of the time, eventers are really not a super cautious group.  I mean, come on, we gallop over some pretty serious stuff after playing in the sandbox.  But sometimes it pays to be a bit cautious, and I would like to think that being proactive in the care of the Redhead will add to her longevity in the career she has chosen for herself (Farrah's choice, she's the one who got herself booted out of the fancy dressage barn!).  We asked Dr. Porter (Performance Horse Doc, for those of you unfamiliar with him) to come down and examine Farrah and Cindy, just to make sure we are all good to go.  We not only have Rocking Horse 3 this weekend, but after this weekend we  increase training and fitness in preparation for the Ocala CCI* in April. 

Dr. Porter has seen a fair amount of event horses, as he is based in Alachua, and he has been the Competition Vet for Red Hills (including this year as well).  He came out yesterday to flex and jog the Redhead and Cindy and also to issue our health letter due to the EHV-1 scare now creeping around HITS OCALA and WEF.  Farrah did attempt to bite Dr. Porter's nice helper a few times, as she bounced down the shell driveway with helper in tow.  Farrah has a way of letting everyone know she is full of it, while still trying to curb her enthusiasm to some degree.  Farrah is not always completely successful and the redhead in her has to create some excitement!  Ah well, the good news is that not only did she not draw blood from the helper, Farrah also flexed great!  Her back is nice and loose and her tendons are tight and Dr. Porter complemented both mares on being well prepared physically for this weekend and beyond!

Now, if only I could be as prepared and somehow figure out how to correctly upload the lovely cross country video that RNS made for of Farrah at RH 2, that would really be something ;)

Monday, February 18, 2013

The Smile Says It All

Forrest Nymph (Farrah) and Lauren DeNeve just before they went out and completely NAILED their third ever Preliminary at Rocking Horse Winter II Horse Trials. 
All photos from this show happily credited to Jody Harwood.  Thank you!

Dressage was obedient and fairly relaxed and scored a 35.

Stadium was fantastic and Farrah and Lauren went double clear :)

Now for the fun part.  The above photo is the first jump in to a full coffin line. 
Farrah's expression through the line says it all....




The entire course looked easy and for the first time at preliminary, Lauren went for time and at 520 meters/minute they made it.  This preliminary counts for score 3 of 4 needed for the CCI in April and they finish on their dressage score for THIRD PLACE!

Last fence on course, sun starting to set, they went out at 4:52PM:

Farrah and Lauren are on a well deserved few days off and then on to Rocking
Horse III in a few weeks.  We will then have six weeks until the CCI.  GO PONY.


Monday, February 11, 2013

Mike Huber Lesson

Lauren and her peeps traveled to Rocking Horse on Sunday to have a school with Mike Huber.  Mike got to see Farrah and her fellow preliminary competitor of Lauren's, Cindy.  Mike and Lauren had a great time and I will say so did Farrah.  The minions later rode our young ones around under Lauren's watchful eye.

With Mike, Farrah and Lauren rode a prelim combination into the water, option of holding 3 or forward 2.  Farrah launched on the forward 2 and almost unseated Lauren on the landing (try sticking on 14.3 that kicks up her hind end on the backside of a drop) and Mike and Lauren agreed that the holding 3 is a better option if Farrah is going to make the skinny on the out!  They finished their school with the above pictured table.  Lauren thought it was big, and walking up to it later with a red number on it, we knew it was an intermediate table.  I knew it was wide, but it didn't bother Farrah a bit ;)

Farrah really impressed Mike on the bounce banks.  He told us she is cat-like on the banks, I think Farrah just likes showing off!  Looking forward to another qualifying score at Rocking Horse II, which is this weekend.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

The Follow-Up

Eventing Nation continues the Farrah story:

Now to get ready for Rocking Horse II and plan 
our next outing after Rocking Horse :)

Thanks for the love, EN!!

Friday, February 1, 2013


To say Lauren and I are thrilled would be putting it mildly, what a nice week for Farrah and Lauren!  First the Chronicle, now Eventing Nation and Farrah will be featured in the April Newsletter for ISR Oldenburg.  It is so awesome that everyone wants to follow this dynamic partnership move up the levels of eventing.  Thanks so much for everyone's support.  It is really appreciated.  Photo above courtesy of my friend, Jennifer Marriott, who flew down RH 1 weekend to escape frigid temps :)

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Farrah Made Chronicle Of the Horse!!

So ok, you probably can't read it here, but I am so excited I just had to put it up!  The article is in the Feb 4 & 11, 2013 issue of Chronicle of the Horse, in their Finish Line spread on the inside back cover.  Farrah and Lauren look marvelous in print :)

When I can post it to my website later today, I will do a proper link.

Go Pony!

Monday, January 28, 2013

Another Qualifying Preliminary Run for the RedHead

Lauren and Farrah had another successful weekend showing at Rocking Horse Winter 1 in that Farrah achieved her second qualifying score at Preliminary.  This time out Lauren thought Farrah was the most rideable she has ever been for dressage.  Apparently our dressage judge was not in agreement as Farrah received a 35 for the dressage phase.  Oh well, we were very happy with the test.

The stadium warm up was fantastic!  Then we had a long wait for some un-planned course rebuilding and as soon as they entered the arena, I could see we had a problem.  Pinned ears and a very unhappy looking pony took an uncharacteristic 2 rails in the stadium.  Lauren exited the arena and we both wondered "WHAT WAS THAT"???

Back at stabling we found two rub marks on Farrah from the girth.  Now, we know that she is a senstive redhead and we take precautions, but apparently not enough this time.  Live and learn, I went shopping and one lovely fleece girth later, we are ready for XC. (Farrah is ever shrinking as she gets more fit; Farrah is now down to a 40!!!)

Farrah succeeded in showing Lauren and I that she loved her new fleecy girth and romped around the XC only 3 seconds over time.  Due to the 8 fault stadium round, there didn't seem to be any need to make time, but it is nice to know that her comfort zone is right on it!

Farrah is enjoying a few days off before we look towards our next outing (maybe Rocking Horse II).  Once again, The Horse Pesterer got a little bit of Farrah action at Rocking Horse, so I leave you with a little clip below:

Friday, January 18, 2013

Countdown to Prelim at Rocking Horse

The countdown continues for Farrah's second preliminary event!  Rocking Horse 1 is next weekend (25-27 January) and Farrah has been letting us know she is quite ready and in her not so subtle way, either.  It is fantastic that Farrah is so very eager to go, but being prelim fit definitely gives both Lauren and I pause.

We have two lovely teenage girls who help us on the farm with fitness sets for the horses and so far, both have been able to do trot and canter sets on Farrah and her prelim barn mate, Cindy.   Last week it became apparent that this arrangement was just too good to last and now gallop sets are restricted to just myself and Lauren.  Farrah is way too exuberant in the canter sets (at least the first two of the three sets) for the girls and so it falls on me to make sure Farrah has the proper canter set without thinking she is the one dictating pace.

Farrah "Come on Mom, let's go faster."  

Me "Honey, I don't think this is what Lauren had in mind."

Farrah "Sure it is!  Why can't I just build speed as we is so much fun WHEE!"

Unfortunately for Farrah, I do finally convince her that we can control the canter/gallop sets and she has to reserve her lovely gallop for the actual cross country.  Good thing it is only a week away, that means I have only one more set to survive :)

Monday, January 7, 2013

Video Cross Country from Ocala

So lets see if this works!!
Thanks to Horse Pesterer for taking and posting the video!

National Qualifying Score Earned!

Farrah has one Preliminary under her belt and I would say it was a successful debut!  The little New Forest Pony had the following scores:

To Date
To Date


The dressage was amazing and even with a break in the counter canter, Lauren and Farrah had a steady test but lots of room for improvement....I can see where with more time, they can easily be in the mid 20's or lower.

Stadium looked plenty big and we saw quite a few oops and rails.  Farrah decided touching wood would be a bad thing!

Cross country we knew we wouldn't aim for time.  Not for her first preliminary!  Lauren's other ride, Cindy One, was tied in her division for 1st but same thing, didn't go for time either.  Instead Lauren focused on getting Farrah to the combinations and they will go for time after a few more prelims are under their belt.

Bruce Davidson commented on her lovely gallop, so nice to hear that!  We are looking ahead to 3 more qualifying rides and then a 1* in Ocala to finish the spring season!

Thanks for the lovely time, Farrah.....ponies rock!