Friday, February 3, 2012

Bring on 2012!

Happy New Year, Everyone! Hopefully this writing finds you all happy, healthy and well on your way to a wonderful 2012! We are excited about the upcoming year!

We ended last year with our favorite Holiday Party - the highlights included the wonderful year-end video put together by Rory (thank you! thank you!) and our annual in-barn year end awards. The video included tons of highlights from the year at shows as well as at home, and some great photos of everyone enjoying their horses. If you haven't seen the video, make sure to check it out! And if you have seen it, watch it again and share it with your friends! What a great way to show everyone how much fun we have - and all the work too! As for our barn awards, every year we have a tough time picking out our barn winners - and this year was no exception - but we were excited to give Aidan and Ella their awards in Most Improved and Sportsmanship, respectively. Aidan and Phalcon have had a long road since coming to the barn and we were delighted with their accomplishments this year. Not only did they do well at the shows, but Aidan was able to reach her own personal goals of showing in the Children's Hunter Division this year - which not only did she do, but she did well, and earned the Reserve Championship in the WSHJA National Awards Program - a pretty big deal for their first time over the bigger jumps! Aidan's commitment over the years truly paid off and we were very proud to be able to help her achieve her goals! As for Ella, anyone who has been around the barn at all, knows that we have a big fan in Ella! Ella is always happy to be at the barn, tries her best (no matter how hard Katherine pushes her) and is always at the back gate when she isn't riding, taking great pictures and videos. Ella is always the first to ask questions about what is coming up in the future and is more than willing to catch a ride with anyone who is driving to the show even if it is to just "hang out". We love her enthusiasm and can't wait to see her get a chance to ride in more shows this year with her favorite pony, Pink.

December was also Christmas time and, of course, all of our ponies were good - enjoying some nice treats and special magnets in their holiday stockings. Jasmine had an extra special present this year - a new home! Although we miss her terribly at the barn, we were very excited about her new owner, Emma, who received Jasmine as a Christmas present - we can't think of a fancier Christmas present for a little girl! Emma and Jasmine will live in Ellensburg where they will continue to pursue Emma's dreams of eventing. Look for photos of Jasmine and Emma on Facebook soon.

January brought the WSHJA banquet and the snow. More and more snow.... Chelsea, Katherine and Nicholas held down the fort as everyone else was stuck (or sick!), and ponies stayed warm, cozy and ridden during the time off from lessons. We're not sure if anyone was happier to see all that white stuff go then this small group of workers, but it was sure pretty while it was here - let's hope it is gone for awhile!

The banquet was a lot of fun - it's a rare chance for us horse people to get all dressed up, so it was great to see everyone looking so lovely! Hopefully you all had a chance to see some of the photos online - it was a fun evening, the food was great and the company even better! Congratulations again to all of our SE winners!

The beginning of the year also brought a new horse to the barn. We are excited to have Heidi and her horse Avram at the barn. Avie is off the track and very green. We have enjoyed getting him started in some of the lessons and watching him try and learn some very new skills! He seems to be learning fast and has a kind, calm disposition. Anyone knowing of a potential new home for Avie should let us know as he is going to turn into a pretty nice ride with some training.

Sam came out and adjusted all the horses - everyone needed an adjustment this time around and several of the horses felt pretty amazing the next day - ahhhhhhh - thanks to Sam for coming out and keeping our ponies in tip top shape! Next on the list for February is more worming as we get the horses ready for the warming weather.

Speaking of warming weather, be prepared for some blanket changes at the barn in the near future! Now is also a great time to wash those saddle pads if you haven't done so recently - not too mention a nice bath for your four footed friend! They can get a pretty solid layer of grunge built up after all the cold, and a nice bath can help make them feel a whole lot less itchy.

We have really enjoyed working so hard on some complicated flat work over the last couple of months and hope you have all noticed a change in your riding. We're excited to start getting back into more jumping as we prepare for the upcoming show season! Hopefully you are all prepared for the show season as well! Remember to talk with Staff about what shows you would like to aim for this year and find out which memberships you should be signing up for for the year.

Lastly, trainers and riders are getting ready to head to Thermal later this month for the first show of the year! Horses and riders are working on getting prepared for some big, tough classes, but are excited to see some warm weather as well! Make sure that you have touched base on the schedule as we are doing extra rides/lessons before we leave/after we get back so that everyone stays current - AND, make sure you keep up with our days in CA while we are gone by checking out the SE page on Facebook! Better yet, book your tickets now and join us for some fun in the sun!!

What they use for "flowers" in Thermal, CA.!

Hope you all have had a chance to take advantage of some WA sun while it was out this week! Enjoy it while it is here and we will see you all out at the barn!