Who else had glorious weather this thanksgiving weekend? In north Texas we had high 60’s, maybe even peaking into low 70’s at the height of the day. Foliage is finally looking like fall. I live for weather like this! I worked at the hospital on Thanksgiving day, and although that sounds crappy it was actually super relaxing. All my patients were crazy nice (everyone feels bad for those that work on holidays), all my cases were straightforward, and I kept smiling to myself every time I remembered I was making time & a half (aka horse show money). My hubby and I celebrated on Friday at my parent’s house. My adorable mom had bought a gingerbread barn and house for my younger sister and I to decorate- of course I did the barn!
On Saturday I had a jump lesson and reveled in the amazing weather with great friends. Rio was a but frisky at first, much preferring to canter to trot jumps, but he settled as the ride went on. He leaves for the Waco Christmas Show next week, so we only have on more weekend (and lesson) until then. He’s been so consistent lately that I feel really prepared for once, and I’m really looking forward to the show.
In our lesson did some gymnastics, which I love and haven’t done in a hot minute. We realized that I wasn’t getting him straight and off my left leg on the approach, which was turning into a left drift through the line. With some minor adjustments this got noticeably better. Gotta love that feeling of instant gratification when you can identify and improve an issue in one lesson.
Then I want on to make some questionable distance decisions HAH. Rio couldn’t care less though, and we eventually got on the same page. He is so much more adjustable now that I actually get to decide what I want during the approach when I can tell it isn’t just right. I typically revert to the deep spot (since he used to prefer the long spot, so we only trained deeper spots for months), but trainer Stacie kept reminding me that now that Rio is much more balanced I don’t ALWAYS have to pick the deep spot. I was having trouble with this TINY fence, the in of a 6 bending line, and I finally got him really rocked but when a longer spot presented itself. The jump was so small that I still could have added, but I decided to go for it. He POWERED off the ground as I chuckled to myself. Apparently he had been waiting for me to give him the green light. (See video for this- the last line in the video).
After my lesson Rio got a bubble bath with nice warm water. I planned to clip him the next day, and I have figured out how important a clean horse is to a successful clip job. Although it’s only been 4-5 weeks since I clipped him initially, Rio had already grown a full coat again so unfortunately the clipping was a necessity.
Sunday was SUPER windy but we still suffered through a quick hack before getting to the task at hand. I say we suffered, but really I suffered with sand in my eyes while Rio had the wind zoomies. I came prepared to clip with a plastic gown (to at least sort of keep the hair off) and light set-up (which helped SO MUCH) and spent the next 4 hours getting him show ready.
I accidentally promised everyone on IG that I would make a how-to video… ya that didn’t happen. Clipping is already such a big job, and I was so dirty. I realized I would need another person to run the camera, and that it would slow me down. SOMEDAY I’ll take some video, but it definitely didn’t happen this time. Rio was getting so cranky that 2/3’s of the way through I had to put him in his stall for 15 minutes to chill and relax. I eventually did get him done though, so now he has a week to even out before the show.