Horse Show Hangover May 25 2010, 0 Comments

Samantha and Rachel celebrate StoneHaven's success at GMHA

We’re back from three days in Woodstock. Having never been to GMHA, I was excited to see the facility and grounds. Believe the hype. This place is gorgeous, and the facilities are lovely. Beautiful permanent stalls. Real bathrooms! Three rings. Wheelbarrows provided. Life is good.

The girl’s first horse show with her new horse,Mondavi, was most definitely a success. She started off in the modified low hunter division. It was something else to see this kid showing a horse in a 2’6” division. Her entire showing career to this point totaled about seven horse shows in the short stirrup division riding a pony.

Before we left town last Thursday, Samantha had a physical, her first in two years. She’s grown seven inches in two years. No wonder those ankles were swinging underneath that pony’s belly!

Mondavi is a pro, and when he stepped off the trailer, he knew where he was and that it was show time. Samantha was very nervous, but he took care of her. I have to admit, it was a pleasure to watch such a pro in action. Over the two days of showing Samantha found her groove and spent time in all three rings, including two trips in the jumper ring, which she loved. She won two classes, was reserve champion in the modified low hunter division and placed second in the equitation flat class. She went home with plenty of new ribbons to add to the collection. Who needs wallpaper?

Dad and the boy were in tow, had a field trip to Quechee Gorge and enjoyed some fishing. The river meandered through the show grounds, and the boy spent most of his time in the water, as did many of the horses.

Yours truly who has been espousing the necessity of good advance planning and making listsblah, blah, blah, forgot more than she remembered in the packing department. We arrived in Woodstock without shavings, water buckets, boot pulls, the braiding kit, yarn, hoof dressing, fly spray…the list goes on and on. I’m placing the blame on the business trip I took last week to New York for the National Stationery Show. I arrived home 48 hours before we left for the show. Mind you, everything that I left up to the girl to take care of was packed. The items I delegated to myself were nowhere to be found.

The four members of the Howell family stayed together in one hotel room without any major smackdowns, although Samantha was absolutely disgusted that she had to sleep in the same bed as her 9-year-old brother. The sacrifices she makes to ride!

I searched out other horse show moms and heard about new mounts, plans for the new season and the balancing act required to make life run smoothly. It seems we’re all trying to help our children fit in homework, sports and riding, while trying to keep ourselves employed and our families fed and wearing clean clothes.

Back at work today, it feels wonderful to sit down! Next show: June 5 and 6, close to home at the Essex Fairgrounds. This time, I’ll be better prepared…….I think.

This article originally posted on The Chronicle of the Horse website.