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She Rides, I Pay

June 13, 2010

Get Off Your Duff!

This week, I returned to my weekly barn shift. My broken hand is now almost healed. I was practically euphoric picking stalls, sweeping, haying, etc. Why? Because I hadn’t moved like that in nearly two months. For four hours, I never stopped or sat down. Eight weeks away from barn chores had not done good things for me. While I did enjoy a little more freedom on Saturday afternoons, the bad far outweighed the good.

June 9, 2010

Wet Horse Show Rant

Oh my. I know it’s just about the most boring, lame thing to complain about the weather, especially in a blog, but I’m going to do it anyway. On Sunday we did a local show right down the road at the fairgrounds.

June 4, 2010

The Adventures of Megan and Stormy

Relationships between children and animals are fascinating. There’s a young rider at our barn named Megan, age 8. Her big sister Rachel rides too. The family owns a mustang pony named Misty who has turned into a champion pony hunter and jumper. Sometimes when two girls in the family ride, they share a pony or horse.

But Megan is not quite ready for Misty. She prefers Stormy, and, without a doubt, Megan is the person that Stormy prefers above all others.

June 2, 2010

Barn Manners: Sharing Hotel Rooms

’Tis the season for “away” horse shows. You and your horse, on the road, at the show, footloose and fancy-free, no email, perhaps limited cell phone capability, no computers…bliss! At the end of the day, you put your horse to bed and return to the hotel room, which is …littered with sweaty horse show clothes, half-eaten food and paddock boot dirt. There’s not an inch of room on the sink counter or a clean towel to be found. Ah, roommates!

May 26, 2010

Barn Manners: Graduation Announcements and Gifts

Question: A bunch of the girls at the barn are graduating from high school soon. One has mailed me a graduation announcement. Am I obligated to send her a gift? And if I give her a gift, shouldn’t I give the others a gift as well?

Answer: ‘Tis the season of graduations and weddings, and if you’re been invited to several, your joy may be somewhat tempered by the inherent gifting obligations that accompany these celebrations.

May 25, 2010

Horse Show Hangover

We’re back from three days in Woodstock. Having never been to GMHA, I was excited to see the facility and grounds. Believe the hype. This place is gorgeous, and the facilities are lovely. Beautiful permanent stalls. Real bathrooms! Three rings. Wheelbarrows provided. Life is good.

May 21, 2010

On The Way To GMHA

This morning we are on our way south to Woodstock, Vermont, for the Green Mountain Horse Show Association spring show. Fortunately, today is warm-ups only, because we’ve just barely left the barn, and we are already 90 minutes behind schedule.

Why are we late? Ah, that is the question. I’m sure it’s a scenario you’ve encountered before on the way to a horse show. How long does it take 12 people to load eight horses into four trailers? A lot longer than it should once you throw in some technical difficulties.

May 14, 2010

Barn Manners: Unsolicited Advice

Question: There’s a boarder at the barn who loves to offer unsolicited advice. Whether it’s about my horse—“Maybe you should try some calming supplements,” and “Is he always this crazy?” or my riding, “If I were you, I’d really starting working on getting him to bend more, try doing some 20-meter circles.”  She won’t stop! It’s driving me crazy. This person has no more experience than I do. What can I say to make her stop?

May 10, 2010

Mom Moments

Last week, I had a Mom moment. Like most other moms, I do have them—you know, it’s that instant when Mother Nature takes over. Your actions are no longer your own, and suddenly you more closely resemble a female lion or momma bear rather than a middle-class suburban mom. (Those of you thinking, “She lives in Vermont, so really she’s a redneck”….just stop right there. Up here, we call them woodchucks.)

April 29, 2010

Barn Manners: How To Shake Hands With The Chick With The Cast

I'm nine days in with the new cast, which is a lovely shade of Missy Ann blue. I have been a good patient, if I do say so myself. When I visited the hand specialist last week, I was given the choice of a hard cast or a brace that could be briefly removed.

The doctor is a fellow lacrosse coach, and his son is on the team my husband coaches. Husband and Doctor Phil discussed it and decided I was not to be trusted with a removable brace. So I am in a cast. And yes, they were correct, I cannot be trusted.

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