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Training at Talland

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enjoy - take delight or pleasure in an activity or occasion

I think it's vitally important to enjoy your horse. This is my aim all of the time - with challenges alongside to overcome.  So I am delighted to say we rock that!  

In 2018 alone, Beau and me - plus my buddies from Happy Acres and Cherwell Valley Riding Club got up to all sorts!

The title of this blog says it all.  The highlight of the year - Quadrille - took over and saw us displaying at Blenheim International Horse Trials as well as competing in the BRC Selection Trial at Bury Farm.  We've been interviewed for a big horsey magazine, and we were on Horse and Country TV!  We led the town carnival, tested ourselves in lessons and dressage and generally played out and had a lot of fun together.

The end of 2018 and into Autumn 2019 has not been so good for me and Tory personally, but we are doing our best to bring our heads back up and get on with things.  Sardra has now retired and we have a new lady on the team - Stella.  I am sure she will be featuring lots in the coming months …

Long weekends

So, Easter already.  Beau has had a very light few months because I have been so busy elsewhere in my life, so it seemed wrong to bring him into work, drop him back, bring him up etc.  He doesn't care, he is quite happy simply being a fat fluffy horse in the field.  I have ridden my friend's beautifulFriesans though and WOW!  That trot!!  

Now that the lighter evenings are here though it makes sense for me to ride after work.  If only i could find the energy!  I don't know about you, but I give 100% to everything which means that at the end of a day's work I am pretty much used up.  Don't get me wrong, my job is not physical at all, but my brain sends all the messages to my body required for me to just want to snuggle up on the sofa with the cat and a glass of wine.  Time wasted?  Or time spent recharging for the next day?

This weekend however, I have big plans.  I have 4 whole days off to do whatever I like!  The field shelters need painting, I have signs to fix to …

So this is 2019, and what have you done? 2018 round-up

I have been quiet for a while, family comes first, even over sharing our escapades, and so i have been unable to ride.  However, looking back on 2018 - it was one heck of a year! - I have put this together.  I love that I can remind myself what we got up to by scanning back on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram and I can relive it all from the comfort of the sofa ;)
Here's a reminder of what we did, and a reminder of how much fun you can get up to with your horse - even holding down a full time job.  Go on, give it all a go!!
In May, Beau turned 21.  We spent his birthday at a dressage competition and he had a lovely time

The incredible Laura Mary Art drew his portrait for me - she caught the glint in his eye perfectly!

We made it into YourHorse magazine - cheery and keen as ever

We did lots of training - including training our brains with Supercoach Alison Kenward, helped by tea served in beautiful Laura Mary Art mugs

We led the Northampton Town carnival parade!

We performed last year's qua…

How to enjoy your horse

Putting your mind to it
In the pipeline is a blog about all of the amazing things we got up to in September, including BRC Quadrille, Blenheim Horse Trials demos and Beau, Sardra and Seamus being formally thanked for their participation in the Northampton town carnival parade.  Whilst i work on that though, I really felt I had to share my thoughts about how attitude and mindset really is everything in riding - and in general life

Where should we focus?
It's a dog eat dog world out there, and in between holding down careers, caring for families, trying to maintain a social life, shopping, cleaning and just looking after our horses, we sometimes lose sight of why we have horses - and that is to have fun!

We all start our lifelong passion with horses in different ways.  I was born with it even though my family was not horsey.  Some people take up riding later in life.  For some their dream is to have a pony and as soon as they have their own job they make it come true.  As well, many peo… - No more boring riding gear for men!

Not just for men.....

My partner is not flamboyant.  He does not like to dress up and owns just 2 suits for black tie do's and weddings.  But he has always been disappointed during trips to the tack shop.  If I wanted to I could come out with a pair of pink tartan breeches and a glittery gilet, but he could only ever come out with beige or black, or a muted grubby olive if very lucky

He decided to do something about this, to bring a little colour into his and Parker's life - so he founded Equestriman!

I am so very proud of him.  We started with a trip to BETA this January with a launch date of 1st September.  We were told by everybody that a new range of breeches in a new previously un-sourced fabric (yes never before used for breeches - even ladies) would be impossible in the timescale he set himself.  And yet here we are in September with a fully stocked webshop which did indeed launch on 1st September

Not only is that an incredible achievement, but the breeches are lovely too. …

All About Tack

I don’t know about you but I always seem to be skint.  If I ever have any spare cash I spend it immediately on a lesson or a competition, or if I am feeling very flush (or have a desperate need), new tack for my beloved horse.  Tack is a tool, a fashion statement, a way to show off your horse’s best features, to show you understand the new field of equestrian science or simply to display your own good taste in saddles.  It can help or hinder your horse as much as bad riding, and if chosen well it can improve your riding too.  Always use a qualified saddle fitter to help you – they have been thoroughly trained by the Society for Master Saddlers – a list is available on their website here:
£ There’s no getting away from it though – it’s an investment.Decent tack from nosebands to discipline specific saddles is expensive.Even if you trawl eBay and pick up good quality second-hand tack it’s still not cheap to buy, or to have to replace – so I try to look a…