Monday, May 13, 2013

Another weekend, another horse show. Margaret informed me that she wants to do horse shows all the time. Today she asked me: "When will it be Saturday again?  ...Is there another horse show this Saturday?!"

I share her enthusiasm and am glad she enjoys doing this activity together. Though, of course, as a grown-up, it is not all play and no work from our side of things.... Bathing & grooming horses, tack polishing, loading everything you might possibly need at a show in the van (and then running back home for the forgotten flower wreath), grandparents babysitting ringside, waiting around in between classes... not to mention the training and practicing ahead of time... 

So, maybe not every weekend. But a few times throughout the summer is pretty fun, and a good thing to work towards and get excited about. 

This time around it was Samson's first introduction to horse shows. And he did fabulous.

It's hard to believe we have already had him for 6 months. What with having a baby and it being wintertime for most of those months, we haven't worked with him a ton....and he has still made so much progress. I no longer fear for my life when I walk behind him, he's worked through a long list of groundwork exercises with me and is currently working on side-passing (and walking through -open- electric fence gates...), he's a pleasure to ride in the arena and has been relaxed and sensitive to riding aids, and he was an angel for his first bath before showing. He even put up with me dousing his tail with baby powder right before the show to try to hide all the remaining yellowness.

First class was Draft Horse/Draft Pony at Halter. This was the competition (we're hiding way down at the other end behind the little black draft pony). 

I'm convinced we would have gotten first if we had done better on "setting up" - having the proper show stance to show off his handsome figure. Right when the judge came to look him over he popped one hind foot forward and stood crookedly. Something to work on. Second place, behind the other pony ("Pistol Pete"), was still satisfying. 

Completely last minute, I also signed Samson up for the in-hand trail class. As you can see, if you watch the video, he did his best to get out of several obstacles the first time through, but during the second time through each time (2 attempts are allowed) he did perfect. I was extremely proud of him, especially for not having any practice ahead of time.

After the last horse show Margaret and William convinced me to enter them into the costume class next time. Margaret insisted on being a butterfly and William immediately decided on being a knight. Sackett & Fritz were very long-suffering.

Charge, Sir Knight.

My beautiful butterfly.

Focus in on William's impish grin in this one, it makes me laugh every time:

This was the inspiration for Will's costume. His horse even looks like Sackett, don't you think?

 He was pleased as punch to be the Red Cross Knight (Saint George). And when we practiced ahead of time he rode in silence because, in his words: "knights are noble and quiet".

Fritz acted like he's had to wear flower necklaces all his life. In fact, he was much more calm and relaxed in general this time around. Showing is already becoming old hat for him.

And now I want you to meet the sweetest little thing in the whole wide world:

Pretty boy Fritz.

And here's a handsome duo. Clay & Wee Willie matched for the regular lead-line class. (Except, of course, Will wore his riding helmet  during the actual show.)

My boys...

And thanks, once again, for the childcare and support from the in-laws. And to Amelia and Susannah for being so very patient and making a great fan club for their sister and brother.


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