Dilemmas of being an Equestrian: Spring Edition

Spring has sprung! (Although, right now in New England it doesn’t look it.) But, I will ignore the weather and listen to my calendar when it tells me that it is officially spring as of March 20th. In honor of the impending warmer weather, here are a few dilemmas of being an equestrian in the spring.

When you see the first signs of green grass.

Your horse when he/she spooks at all the birds again.

Riding without a million layers on.

Finally being able to ride back outside.

When the outdoor is one big mud puddle.

The first horse shows of the season.

Your horse when you finally let him/her outside without a blanket.

And you cross your fingers that they stay clean.

But this is all that happens.

And they come back caked in mud.

All the sassy ponies in the warmer weather.

Trying to walk in the mud but all you do it slip and slide.

When you forget it’s a mud pit outside so you don’t wear the right shoes and everything just seeps into your tall boots.

Or if your smart enough to wear muck boots but they get sucked off in the mud anyways.

It’s lighter out later, therefore you can spend more time at the barn.

No more frozen water buckets.

Shedding season continues.

All the rain just makes things even muddier.

When your horse loses a shoe in the mud.

But then you remember that Spring only for a few months and summer is on its way.

HAPPY SPRING!

You can’t have JUST ONE.

HAPPY NEW DOVER CATALOGUE SEASON!

Not much compares to looking into your mailbox and seeing a fat, new Dover Saddlery catalog laying inside just waiting for an equestrian to feast their eyes on the endless pages of horsey items. Sure you could just go online and see it all there, but it’s not the same as taking a pen to the pages and circling everything a rider could dream of.

Yes, equestrians are some of the few people left in the world who still get excited about catalogs.

Yes, I do go through the entire thing, page by page, and circle everything I could possibly want or need. If only everything I marked would magically show up in my doorstep. (Get on it Dover.)

Yes, most of what is circled is something I already have, but it is also something that I am 110% positive that I need ten, maybe twenty, more of. (This isn’t a horse person thing, this is a girl thing. It is in our genetics. We can’t help it. Even Ryan Gosling agrees.)

So, let me introduce you to a few of the items that equestrians are entirely convinced they cannot have just one of…

BREECHES

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We wear them every time we ride. One color gets boring. Therefore, we must own every color of every style of our favorite brand…and maybe a few colors in our second and third favorite brands, too. Yes, there really is a difference between tan, beige, and green-beige. The only thing they have in common is that they need to be in my closet in all three shades. The same goes for all the shades of grey, blue, and berry.

HELMETS

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We wear these every time we ride too. Who cares if the Charles Owen looks like an egg on my head, I still want it. Oh, I don’t have a “GPA head”? That’s nice.You think the Samshield is ugly? I think I make it look good. Plus, what if I fall off and crack it? What if it gets wet? What if someone needs to borrow it? It’s always good to have a spare one…or two…or three…

TALL BOOTS

…SAID NO EQUESTRIAN EVER! One pair for schooling. One pair for showing. And one pair just because. I just HAVE to have an extra pair in case my zipper breaks at a show…right?

BAKER ANYTHING

This is definitely a horse thing. What is it about the Baker print that makes you want EVERYTHING that they make? I don’t even have a dog and I want the doggie blanket.

HORSE COOKIES/TREATS

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Isn’t this a given? You try going to the barn and have a 1,000+ pound animal stare at you with their big brown pony eyes and not give them a treat. Good luck. 

MONOGRAM ANYTHING

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What is it about horse items that make one feel the need to monogram everything? Every. Single. Thing. Something about having your initials on things make them seem that much classier. Initials, last name, your horse’s name. Saddle pads, coolers, exercise sheets, garment bags, boot bags, helmet bags, polo wraps, standing wraps, tack trunks, NEED I SAY MORE? Go ahead, monogram it all. No one is judging.

SADDLE PADS

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If you’re a horse person, you knew this was coming. These are another item that is used every time we ride, therefore we must have tens of hundreds of them. Saddle pads galore! Every color, every embroidery, every combination of color with piping. That wall of pads at the tack shop is a rider’s dream come true. If only we could own them all. 

BLANKETS

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These are a close second to saddle pads. With so many different weights and fills, how can you ever have too many blankets? My horse obviously needs at least two versions of each weight, one to wear outside and one for the barn. And then there is fly sheets, waterproof blankets, coolers, quarter sheets, scrim sheets…the list goes on and on. Plus, you always need an extra for that day when your horse’s pasture mates decide to rip their blanket to shreds. 

What can you not have just one of?

Next Stop…Regionals!

Last Saturday was BCET’s last regular show of the 2013-2014 IHSA season. This show was back in Connecticut for the regionally hosted show, meaning that all the teams would contribute and help the show run smoothly. Becker was designated to help hold horses for the day, not a hard job for a horse-crazy team. Because this was a show put on by the region and not just one school, it allowed for a large limit of riders who could show per team. This was great news for Becker, as we ended up with a rider in almost every class! It also gave a few of our riders a chance to ride in their new division and prepare for Regionals next weekend!Continue reading “Next Stop…Regionals!”

Double Header – Part Two

When my alarm went off for day two of BCET’s sleep deprived weekend the only thing I wanted to do was stay in my burrito roll of blankets and fall back into oblivion. If only. Instead, I dragged myself out of bed for another day of exhaustion, cold temperatures, and horse showing. Again, my body switched to cruise control and I somehow made it to the bus fully dressed with all of my stuff for the day. For once I was thankful for the long drive to Johnson and Wales University because it meant another hour of sleep.Continue reading “Double Header – Part Two”

Double Header – Part One.

Second semester means the second half of Becker’s IHSA season. After welcoming one new rider and one returning rider onto the team, BCET was ready to start practicing for our first weekend of showing. Not only would our first show of 2014 be at the end of spring break, therefore cutting our break in half, but it would a double-wammy. Two shows, two days, one weekend. Our first show of the weekend was hosted by three different teams; the College of Holy Cross, Assumption College, and Clark University.Continue reading “Double Header – Part One.”