I grew up Hunter and now do low level eventing with my OTTB Steady Smiler whom I purchased straight from the track 3 years ago. We have done Beginner Novice taking 3rd in the first recognized event we entered. We are moving to Novice this year with Training not far behind. There is nothing I love more than taking Steady out and galloping Cross Country. Nothing can to me compares.
I have had a horse as a daily part of my life since the day I came home from the hospital 33 years ago. My dad had Arabians and I was riding on horses before I could even walk.
|Exhibit A me on a horse before I could walk. This is WinJan my childhood horse.|
Horses just are, were and always will be a part of who I am. I was the youngest of 4 kids and the only one that had an obsessive attachment to horses and riding. I was put into lessons at a Hunter Barn when I was 6 years old. It started with weekly lessons and by the time I was 8 I was at the barn every day. At about 10 I was one of the daily exercise riders at the barn. I rode 4-5 horses a day 7 days a week and in turn I got lessons and coaching at shows and the privilege of using one of the stable horses to ride and show. It was my life. I would get dropped off by the bus at the barn during the school year and stay into the evening. In the summers I would go at 7 am and often not return home until after the evening feeding. On the weekends we were usually traveling to one of the local circuit shows. I learned how to be a good rider and horsemen from one of the best.
Also a HUGE part of my equine obsessed childhood was my best buddy through thick and thin, Winjan. You can read more about my backyard horse that I did everything with, here. But we did it all. I did all the things people see in the movies.. We galloped through open fields bareback, spent days at a time wandering, through woods, down the road, into town, to my friends houses, to the store, through the drive thru. He was not the safest horse for a kid and the only reason I survived was because of my instruction at the hunter barn. He had very little training and was very green but as a kid I didn't think that much about it. As a mother I think about all of the many, many falls and crazy situations I got myself into and cringe. But it made me a pretty fearless rider even today. I taught that horse everything from how to be fancy in a hunter ring to how to run the "keyhole" and "barrel" patterns. One of the biggest highlights of my childhood was taking my backyard horse I trained myself into the hunter ring with the fancy breed and professionally trained hunter horses and winning and taking Grand Champion in my division!
|Winjan and I all growed up! Well I was about 13 and he was 16 in this picture.|
Through several bad choices on my part I ended up getting sent away to boarding school when I was almost 16. I was trapped up in the middle of the Ozarks in Missouri for the next 3 1/2 years. Horses at that point were not an option considering the fact that I wasn't even aloud to step foot outside the 30 ft barbed wire topped fence for nearly 4 years. Then I went straight from there to college. I met my husband there. Then it was college, marriage, a job, baby, move, baby, baby all by the time I was 26 years old. 26 with 3 babies under the age of 3 and that became my life for the next several years. Though when we moved to the country in 2004 I had purchased a miniature horse a month after we moved in. I knew there was no way I could take on a full size horse at that time nor was our property set up for one( the fencing couldn't even keep in the mini) so a mini would be what held me over until the day came I could get my own.
2010 and it finally arrived we had put in the fence built the stalls and I was off to find my dream horse. I have always loved thoroughbreds and that is what I wanted. That is when Steady came into my life and the rest you can read in the achieves in this blog. I started blogging before he came home in April 2010.