Ahh the years of the jods. This wasn’t my first horse show, but I believe it was my first horse show on this horse, her name was Daisy.
Fun fact, that jacket I’m wearing was once BM’s (Barn Mom) and she still has it.
Yikes I grew up from 2010-2011. Very tall and had some amazing fashion choices. I vividly remember this moment because the girl on the right was untacking her horse, and the horse left a pile and she whined about not wanting to pick it up because it was so gross. I cleaned up after and then the girl took credit.
2012 is also what jumpstarted my title of barn rat. BM started the idea with me and then friend. We both loved the idea so much and I would beg my mother to drop me off early for my lessons and then pick me up hours after. I started to stay on weekends and working with the barn help to run wheelbarrows, turn horses in and out, and just learn the routine and soak up as much as I could.
There was a prettier shot from this show in show clothes, but I liked this one better. Still showing the small schooling low profile hunter under saddle shows here in 2012. Daisy and I always rocked the pleasure classes.
I also clearly did not care for helmet safety as my chin strap here was ridiculously long.
I couldn’t find any great riding photos from this year, but this was the year I started riding Tawny more. Tawny is a big bulky 15 hand grade unregistered sorrel red chestnut school mare I fell in love with. Looking back, she was incredibly green, and I had no business riding her, but I loved her, and she grew to grudgingly like me.
Dressage shows with Miss Tawny! (I am wearing shorts in this pic, don’t worry). We worked hard at dressage. I always felt odd because I was doing dressage in hunt clothes and tack but it was all good. Tawny wasn’t brilliant at it, and she probably never would get past training, but we did well enough. I focused more on dressage with her because of BM, but it helped her tremendously to get off her forehand and slow down.
2015 was a wild year. A week abroad, two weeks at a camp, my first ever fall off a horse the day I took my drivers license test, a car accident, another fall and then a trip to a neurologist.
Regardless, this was one of the rare rides I got to take a horse out in the outdoor when it snowed and got to play in the snow. Snow rides are some of my more memorable rides ever. BM is the other rider on her horse, Logan.
Okay but this photo was so cute, me checking my scores. Tawny and I did a lot more showing this season, I moved up and out of training A and B to training C. Because of how green Tawny was at the time still, and her canter needed some serious work, we never really got out training C.
2017 was a hard year. I didn’t do lots of showing, and because of some drama, BM moved her personal horses away from that barn, and to a new one. She continued to teach at the original first barn, but I moved with her two horses. This picture is one of me and BMs horse Logan, who adores me. I did a lot of work with him, mainly lunging when she couldn’t be there.
BM and I moved to a third barn, run by one of her old friends. Barn #2 was too negative, the paddocks too small and muddy and it just didn’t work out. I ended up leasing an old student’s horse while she was abroad and worked with him over the summer. The focus that summer was working on getting BM her bronze with her horse, and I became a full fledged groom. I was always grooming for shows before with BM and her students, but I became her go to groom for that season.
Barn #3 was run by a woman who did Arabians. I got to take a side saddle lesson, which totally got added to my bucket list.
I loved this picture because it was at my first ever away show, a schooling show up at another old students current barn. Corduroy, the above mentioned old student’s horse, bucked our way through the test. Cordy was also the first horse to send me to the ER after a fall. I also bought my first dressage saddle, the beloved Jag, this same year. Corduroy ended up being given away for free, I ended my lease on him because of joint issues on my part, and increased bill I couldn’t pay. He happily is in CT as a lesson horse, and got joint injections to that fixed bucking.
Picking 1 photo from 2019 was completely impossible. This was just a schooling ride mid summer with my then lease horse Bently, who I took to a few Arabian shows over the summer.
Now, at the end of 2019, I’m at a totally different barn then the beginning of it, riding different horses and trying even more new things.
BM and I have big goals for the show season in 2020, and I’m so excited to finally graduate college, work full time, and start saving for my own horse.
The 2010s really did treat me well, I went from a bobble head 11 year old to a 20 year old dressage rider that grooms. My teen years gave me the nickname Barn Rat, which was is the inspiration for my blog, and I’ve gotten the chance to ride so many different horses, and try so many different things. Here’s to next year!