Friday, August 17, 2007

Rachel and Grandma and Arabian Horses at the Summer Show Part 3

The first post of the Rachel and Grandma and an Arabian Horse series was posted several months ago and documents Rachel's journey on her way to her dream of competing one day at the Arabian and Half Arabian US National Championship Show.

Part 1 at the Summer Show

I didn't get a post up yesterday because I was waiting on the pictures taken at the show by Rachel's dad but it looks like it might be a while before I get them.

I don't want to break up this series about the show, so I'm going to use a picture from the Spring Show that I haven't used here yet. In the picture I'm schooling the Arabian horse in hunt seat. However, we showed at this current show in western pleasure only and I'm thinking we're going to stick to that for a while.

We never did get Dandy bathed on move in day so Rachel still had that to do first thing Saturday morning. We got to the Western Washington Fairgrounds around 8 and should have had plenty of time to get the horse washed and have him dried in time to school at the lunch break. The keywords were "should have" because that's not quite how it worked out.

Rachel decided to give the Arabian gelding a little extra time to finish his breakfast. Between that and taking her time with the bathing process (about an hour) there was no way the horse had enough time to dry. Not only did he not get dry enough to school at the break, he was not really dry for his class.

The show was small (although large for the Summer Show with 146 Arabian and half-Arabian horses) and a number of classes (five I think) were cancelled before it was time for Rachel's class. That made everything come up faster than usual.

When I realized that they were flying through the classes, I called Rachel on her cell and instructed her to saddle up her horse so I could school him for her before her class. Again, Rachel opted to finish what she was doing instead of follow instructions so when I got back to the stalls to get the horse, she was just taking him out of his stall to tack him up.

My biggest stress at a horse show is worrying about making classes on time. I roll pretty well with the punches but I just have this fear that something will happen and I'll miss a class so I tend to be pretty organized and very methodical about getting ready. Messing with this, pretty much blows my mind and pushes me to the wall.

Rachel, on the other hand, tends to be the opposite. She's not organized and she moves in low gear most of the time. Her very first horse show, we missed a class but I can't say that it impacted her as much as it did me. Now we're finding ourselves in a similiar situation.

I have to say I was torn between tacking up the horse myself which would be enabling Rachel's choices or just letting her find out what her not following instructions would mean. There was no doubt in my mind she would miss her class.

I opted for the enabling. I figured I was applying enough pressure to make her uncomfortable enough about her earlier choices that she really didn't need to totally miss her class to know there are consequences. Then I laid out a list of instructions with strict orders not to deviate from them as I tacked up the horse.

As I was heading out to the warm-up arena I called Rachel's mom to let her know the class was going to be much sooner than planned. Fortunately she was far from the fairgrounds and was able to get there in time to help get Rachel ready.

Because I hadn't been able to school the Arabian horse at the break, I took him out to school him in the snaffle first. I was pretty sure with as long as he stood tied in his stall, he was probably going to be stiff and I was right. It took a bit of work to finally get him loosened up so that I could begin working him in the bridle.

By then there was only enough time to be sure he was steering ok before I even turned him over to Rachel. She got to ride only a couple of laps each direction before it was time to head to the arena. This is not really my idea of being prepared to enter the show ring. All I can say is it's a good thing this horse is broke!

To be continued.........

Part 4

Visit Blog Village and vote daily for this blog Here They are now measuring the rankings by votes out, so if you find my blog on the site, please click that link too to improve my rankings. TY


  1. beautiful photo!

    your bay is absolutely stunning!!!!!

    wow-I remember those days of being in the barns yakking with friends in between shows, then suddenly here the 2nd call for my class, speeding to the arena and being the last one thru the gate. NOT a good feeling or impression for the judges.

  2. It's a beautiful picture even if it is the wrong show :)
    Rachel is going to be fine with your valuable lessons.

  3. Wow! Great post! *fingers crossed* that things went well in the show ring!!

  4. I wish I had taken lessons when I was younger. Your bay is just beautiful. I love the way he gleams in the pictures....just gorgeous.

  5. IF I was Rachel... I would totally imagine me being on the ball, wanting the horse to be ready for show, working with the horse, getting him all tacked up and ready to go. I would imagine me wanting to do well at the horse shows, instead of being slow and unorganized. This would be an amazing opportunity to learn something new. It's too bad Rachel is wasting this opportunity she has. I wish I had this opportunity to work with horses like, everyday, or even once a week. I wish I had a Grandma like you!! or even a grandma that owned a single horse that I could ride and learn more about horses with. Also, very beautiful horse in the picture.. he is a good looking horse ;)