All that to say, of course we didn't limit ourselves to photographing my lessons. That would be silly!
Tack pictures!!I bought both of Courage's bridles with me because I was paranoid that he would break one and no one else would have a small enough bridle handy to loan me for the midget man. Then we got playing with Ellie's tack collection.
Meet western Courage the cowboy horse!
I think he's pretty adorable.
Possibly due to the aforementioned ridiculous tack sale trip, Ellie also had a cob size nunn finer figure eight lying around, plus a fun myler bit.
It's that adorable.
In fact, then we took him outside to do some shots and got this.
Someone should be a nunn finer model.
You doubt? I even rode him in it the final day of the clinic.
Pretty much it's his look. Ellie adopted him as her god pony and the beautiful figure eight came home with us on loan.
And another gratuitous figure eight shot.
I might as well point out that I brought a selection of bits to play with on cross country in case a certain Mr Runaway Racehorse took it into his head to be a nut.
I ended up putting his sprenger on the figure eight just because he's so soft and easy and I'm more concerned about getting him to take contact.
Of course sometime eventually he might give me some trouble about stopping, but we haven't run across that yet.
Fun candids!I was pretty apprehensive about the whole experience, so when Courage was able to hack out on a loose rein Friday morning, I was elated. I certainly hadn't thought he would be that good that soon.
I love how this picture captures that emotion.
Courage is the sort of guy who always wants to see what's going on. At the beginning of the weekend, he just hung his head out this window constantly to observe the world. By Sunday, he'd look out it, but he had learned to rest and be content in his own space.
Ellie also caught a couple of us together by the oh-so-photogenic barn. Courage was just being his usual sweet self and posing dramatically. This was after our first day on cross country (I think?).
This whole spring, I've been second guessing myself. Am I good enough? Am I overhorsed? Why am I even trying to show? What is the point of all this? Should I just quit pushing myself and trail ride?
I almost didn't go to our schooling weekend.
Instead of being stressful and hard and scary, the whole thing turned out to be confidence building and fun. I feel so much more connected to Courage now that he and I have actually done something together.
He came into my life at a really difficult time. I am finally able to appreciate the really cool horse he is and is becoming. He's sweet and smart and willing and talented. He's such a natural on the cross country course and dressage comes easily to him.
At the end of the day, the only question I'm asking is "Why am I trying to turn my event horse into a hunter?"
I guess I'll have to figure that one out.
I'm finally ready to have a new banner for the blog. I'd been putting it off because I just can't deal with certain things right now, but Ellie (artiste extraordinaire) designed one for us that captures not only how I'm moving forward with Courage, but also pays homage to the red man who brought me here.
It's a new chapter for the SprinklerBandit blog. I think I'm finally ready to write it.