Thursday, November 10, 2016

When To Hold Em & When To Fold Em

Its obvious I have not been blogging as regularly as usual, which is fine, but it definitely feels weird to me. I haven’t even been reading other blogs for the most part. I feel a bit deflated regarding the whole shebang-- mostly due to personal things; school, work, relationship, gym, the usual.

Then of course there’s the absolutely shitstorm that was the election. I would like to say its over, but its not over…not with Trump in office.

That aside...I made an incredibly difficult, potentially life changing decision about two weeks ago and haven’t had the energy/drive to explain/divulge it, except to a few people. Mostly because the internet is a nasty place and I hardly have the energy to deal with that along with everything else. Usually its very easy for me to let it roll off my back these days, but right now I’m not so sure...Luckily, the blogging world is a bit more tame than it was 5 years ago, but I still feel like I owe the people who care enough to read this blog a thorough explanation….even though I really don’t owe anyone anything.

I’ve been waiting to announce this, due to his most recent issue with his foot & I wanted to ensure he was 100% again before finally coming out with it…. but I decided to put Bacardi up for sale.

Never not going to use this photo

Granted, he may never sell because he is a one of the most sensitive, special snowflakes in existence, so maybe I have nothing to be devastated about…but let me explain a little.

First, to any remaining haters, go ahead. Get it out. Say, “I told you so” and laugh a little. Better? Good, because I am not selling him due to above stated snowflake-ness & your incredibly rude opinions about how we were not right together. I fucking dare you to talk more shit about this horse and what I’ve done with him. I didn’t see any of you try and work with him, so there’s that.

No, I am selling him because I simply, obviously, 100% cannot afford it any longer.

Unfortunately life does not go the way you want it to no matter how much you plan ahead, problem solve and trouble shoot, and this is one of those times. Shit happens. I have been incredibly fortunate to have been blessed with two incredible OTTBs in my lifetime, especially at such a young age—but supporting them on my own is getting to be near impossible.

Changing jobs was a lifesaver and came just in time after Yankee’s surgery in Feb. I am eternally grateful for this position—it is not about the job. I am simply a young professional working in the medical field, loving what I do. That’s not the problem at all.

Yes, I am holding a kiddon

The problem is that in order to keep two, incredibly high maintenance OTTBs healthy, sound and fit is takes a LOT of money. Like, most of it. I’m sure some of you are already aware of this. Yankee’s lease-ending colic kind of put the kibosh on my most well laid plans…so I had to adjust to that quickly. It was not an ideal situation, but I have coped and I am pleased with his progress and the fact that he is still alive.

He's not going anywhere, ever. I would literally starve for that horse, because he has given me everything. Almost 12 years together, that boy isn't going anywhere. So it sadly had to come down to my more athletic, younger, lovely creature named Bacardi.

However, as much as I WISH and hope and want it to work out, it simply can’t any longer. I have stretched myself to the brink, forgoing incredibly important aspects of life in order to pay for my beloved horses. Love cannot pay their bills and I ensure you, this was THE most painful decision I have ever had to make. I think I legitimately cried for DAYS once I made the decision final and told my trainer, my parents and my friends.

Literal days.

So now that he is 100% sound and back in full work, I am ready to announce it to anyone and everyone. If you or someone you know is interested, contact me via FB for more details. I may be slightly biased, but I think that Bacardi is one of a kind. There’s a reason I bought him and worked through that god-awful first year with him. He is special. He is talented. He is worth it.

"I not doin nuffin"

We are getting pictures and a sale video together this weekend, but for now there are tons of videos on my YouTube. I’m not going to front with this sale, he is HOT. He is hard to work with. He will test you. But, he is TALENTED. Anything on Youtube is proof of all of that.

All I am requiring is first right of refusal, references and updates. He can go to any state in any discipline, but I have a feeling this horse will succeed most as a jumper. I also think he might be a fantastic hunter. Square knees, auto changes and lovely, flowing gaits really do scream hunter. I love that he can be a quick jumper, but also meander around jumps in a hunter fashion.

I know this horse has the potential to be successful, I simply don’t have the time or monetary resources to make it happen any longer. It absolutely kills me that this is the reality, but I also can’t keep putting off paying other bills in order to showcase my youngest in hopes of someday becoming great.

I would have loved to attend a recognized show every weekend. Hell, we could have been much farther along if I had the funds. Its fine, I’m not that competitive anymore, but damn its hard to sell a horse for what they’re worth without a show record.

schooling shows don't count :/

He will NOT be sold to the highest bidder or ASAP. I refuse to let this horse go to someone who might potentially abuse him again. Luckily, I DID have the gumption to work through his issues and I can honestly say he is a true, solid equine citizen at this point. He now comes when called in the field, lets you halter him in the stall, GOES IN STALLS, blankets, crossties (BIG DEAL), TIES, waits at gates and doorways to be led through, doesn’t kick, bite or rear anymore, trailers (!!!!), clips (!!!), stands for the farrier and even tolerates the vet. He is sweet as can be and instead of running from humans he now welcomes their touch. Sure, you can’t clip his ears and shreds blankets like its his job, but god bless…he is a different horse now. He has come such a long way in the last two years, it would be a shame to reverse that completely. All I want is someone who understands him for who he is and doesn’t expect to find a unicorn. Every horse has his flaws, but I know that B is worth the continued time and effort. I just wish I could be the one to give that to him.

The worst thing is that he's been an absolute dream lately. I get off of him beaming and incredibly sad because I know that this isn't going to be forever. 

Gahd dangit I hate selling horses.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

(Mostly) Wordless Wednesday

I have SO much to update and zero desire to post. You could say I'm taking a short blogging break/gathering my thoughts. However, some updates: V did amazing with Yanks and got second place at the KYHP Novice CT with a 27 in dressage and double clear jumping!!  TWENTY SEVEN. That smashed her last score by almost 10 points. The same weekend I met Redheadlins and Slider at RRP and got to watch some fantastic OTTBs in action! B and I also did take some super basic fall pics though that actually turned out kinda legit. It was mostly me stuffing treats in B's face/trying to avoid slobber/fake smiling and hoping they turned out. I think the photographer took about 1000 pics and less than 1/3 turned out LOL...preview..

Actual FAV

Idk what face this steel? trying to distract horse while also posing? I think I was half blinking lol

I actually really love this. Such pretty. Much fall. So leaves. 

B, stahp, look pretty god dammit

I shall update everyone very soon.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

October Questions

YAY bloghop because no riveting content....yet. Thanks VivaCarlos!

Sidenote, not sure why the formatting is weird, but sorry.

1. What do you consider jumping high for yourself?

Well, that depends. If we are talking XC, anything over 2ft. LULZ what happened to me. 

If we are talking difficulty level, I say anything above 3'6 really really starts to test me as a rider and thats where mistakes and glaring issues (ahem, jumping ahead) come out. So I consider that high for me. But not scary.

If we are talking scare me shitless, that would be anything above 5ft. I jumped Yankee 5ft and almost peed myself. I might have a little on landing. It was awesome, but not something I will likely do again. Jackie ended up jumping him 5' fucking way was I doing that. Those 3 inches are a LOT. Def high. Too high, no thanks. 

never. again.

2. What are your short-term goals for riding?  Do you think youll reach them?

Short term, I would like to get back into riding shape. Right now I'm about 10lbs heavier than normal and a little floppy. Muscle memory still there, but mostly floppy. I will absolutely reach them now that my back is 100% better. 

3. Long term goals for riding? Do you think you’ll reach them?

Long many, such evolving. I think right now, I would really like to become a better dressage rider. I think getting a bronze would be sick. Also, in the jumper realm, competing at HITS is a huge goal of mine. Also not at piddly 2'9, something like 3'6, 3'9, 4ft+ would also be sick. 

So, bronze medal and HITS.

If I will reach them? I'm not sure. Showing involves money, not something I have right now. But you can be damn sure that I am going to bust my ass trying to get better so when the money is available I'm ready.

4. How many barns have you been at in your riding career?

Considering I didn't start boarding until I went to college (kept my horses on my parents farm) I have only been at 4. First was at She Who Must Not Be Named's barn in MO. Then I moved to Stony Hill in MO with the sweetest BO in the entire world. She's quite old but still rides her 4th level dressage horse everyday. He's equally as old and they are ADORABLE. Then I move home back to my parents farm. After a year  I realized B hated it there so I moved to Ends Meet Eventing and haven't left. I don't ever want to actually, BO is perfection.

5. How many different trainers have you been with in your riding career?

LAWD. This is hard. I first started riding at a hunter barn (gag) when I was a wee child, and until I realized what that was about (sorry hunters), I stayed. I was there for about 6 years. Then, I started training with Mann O Mann Eventing Stables and Jurgen Gohler. 

This was Jurgen/Wonder Pony days, I think I was about 13 here

He was TOUGH but he made me the rider I am today. After that I moved to Janice Holmes. BY FAR my favorite trainer of all time. I absolutely loved her methods, knowledge and get it done attitude. She molded what Jurgen created. I was so so sad when I had to leave her for school. In MO I lessoned regularly with She Who Must Not Be Named, along with a lot of other randos like Brian Sabo, Stony Hill BO, etc. But I never took regular lessons. When I moved back to OH and to EME I started training with BO there who is an actual eventing god. 

6. Ever worked at a barn?

Yep! Several. In high school I was a groom for an Arab trainer (bleh), and also worked on some Paso Fino breeding farms (so random). When I moved to MO I worked for Stony Hill and became their Barn Manager. I loved it, but it was a tough job. Its so hard to please everyone! I always applaud boarding farm owners and managers--its hard.

Some of my SH friends

7.Scariest thing that has happened at your barn?

Does Yankee getting surgery count, because I am pretty sure I was legally dead from numerous heart attacks that day.

Or one time at SH an old horse fell down and broke her hip and had to be put down on the spot. Scary and sad.

8. Have you ever given a lesson? What level was the rider?

Yes, I used to actually work a lot with kids. Apparently I'm good with them even though I don't like them. I did make money doing that. You could call them beginners. Here and there I helped friends out and now I lesson with V every Friday. But I am no pro and I don't ask for money. 

9. What is your opinion on the accuracy of critiquing riders online?

First, I loathe online "critiques" with a fiery passion. I know I am guilty sometimes of judging people/horses/things by one moment in time (a picture), but it is SO unfair. I know my horses can have a moment and look awful but get over it in 5 seconds and go around the rest of the ride looking perfect, but if someone managed to snap a pic of said "moment" it would look awful. Pics are awful. If you want to critique, look at videos.

People online are nasty, brutal things and I think its quite awful and they really like to hide behind their keyboards. Also, most people on the internet are CLUELESS. I think is hilarious when teenagers critique people. Like, you know nothing. So the accuracy is sometimes laughable. 

10. What is the ideal height of a horse for you?

For me, because Amazon, anything taller than 17 hands with well sprung ribs is chill. I literally look like an obese tree on Yankee and he's 16.1 and small. B is 17.1 and thicker around and I still look slightly awkward on him. Ideally, I would love an 18h horse, but they tend to be clumsy. 

this horse was 18.1 I think. And MASSIVE. Half perch/half TB

so, 17h.

C'mon ya'll jump in! Its fun.
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