January 27, 2011

Its Official - Almost

I just took the first step to committing to showing this season. I just bought my show gear.  I still have a lot of my old show clothes, most of them actually.  But while I'd like to say I still fit in my show clothes from 12 years ago, unfortunately this is not the case.  I'm sure 6 years of making beer for a living and 2 more of making cheese didn't help.

I tried on my white breeches last year and I could get into them, but ride in them.... no.  The shirts, there was no way.  I squeezed on my show helmet, but its more of a hunt cap and I'm not sure it even meets any of the safety requirements nowadays.  I had a Pony Club helmet but that has been lost in the moves over the years.  So I bought myself a new pair of breeches, a new helmet and a new show shirt, all the cheapest I could find of course.  Luckily the 2 most expensive items still miraculously fit, my boots, and my jacket, thanks mom and dad for buying me things a size or two too big.

I spent a lot of time looking for bargains and waited and waited until I was sure I was going to need these items... I hate spending money on my riding, other than the necessities of feed and lessons.  The Dover catalog came and I found so many good deals that weren't on the website.  I found everything I needed within a price range I was willing to pay. I even threw in a new saddle pad because it was only $15 and it looked so nice.

On a side note, what makes a pair of breeches cost $250+??  What do they do that the $70 breeches (I think $70 is too much but I am super cheap) don't?  Both cover my butt.  Do the $250 ones ride the horse for me?  Do they move my leg to the proper position for shoulder-in?  I know I'm making fun, but I kinda really want to know.  Anyone out there with high-end breeches... are they worth the 300% mark up?

Ok back to the original subject .. showing.  Buying these things was my way of committing to showing.  I've thought about it in the past with Gunner and last summer with Dexter, but always gave myself excuses (some good ones) about why I couldn't do it.  With Gunner, he was so nervous and I didn't have a trainer or trailer.  And with Dexter, once I had a trainer and trailer, I wasn't sure he  was quite ready.  Well we've been working together for a year, we have a trainer and a trailer.  Am I hesitant because he still gets spooky in new situations, and last time there was a show at my trainers barn during our lesson, he walked around with his head high whinnying at every horse he saw...yes.  But we will never know until we try.  The worst that can happen is we go, he's too high strung and we have to scratch.  Ok, maybe there are worse things like him flipping out, breaking free and generally running amok.  But he hasn't done that yet so we won't think about it.

I always told myself I would only show when I knew we were absolutely ready.  Now I'm realizing you can't know if you are absolutely ready until you get to the show, especially with a relatively new horse.  So our goals for the first show won't be to win, but to get there and ride and complete the test.  If we do that, success, although I really really do like winning. 

No all I have to do is actually register for a show.... eeeep!


  1. YAY! Good for you. I am excited and terrified about getting back to showing this year. I didn't show a lot on a horse that I totally trusted, now I am planning to show the unpredictable mare. As for breeches, the high end breeches are just like any other high end clothes, they are very well made, but it is mostly about the label. That said, if I can find a pair at a ridiculous sale price I will grab them.

  2. Good for you. Last summer was my first time taking a horse (my horse Rogo) to their first show, and I'm not an experienced show person. I was terrified at first! As you wisely put it though, you have to just go (within reason of course). The first few outings are just to get your horse acclimatized to the environment. Rogo hoped out of the dressage ring during his first class at his first show. He was doing so well up until then - forward, precise, etc. etc. I was sitting on him, thinking "I can't believe we're doing this, he's doing great", when all of a sudden he spotted my teacher, who was calling the test for me, and he hopped out, with no warning, right beside her. I thought I'd die of embarrassment. Anyway, I'm rambling on.
    Get out there and get the miles on your horse and have fun. I can't advise you re high end breeches - I've never owned a pair :)

  3. Well... I can't exactly help you with the high end breeches thing;) As a rule, I never buy breeches over $50. That's primarily just me being cheap, but you know what? The one pair I own that cost more than that haven't held up nearly as well as my good old Tuff Riders.
    In regards to the whole showing thing, you go get 'em! I'm sure you and Dexter will be fantastic. At the end of the show season, you'll have had so much fun you'll think "Why did it take me so long to get back into it?"
    Best of luck to the both of you.

  4. Hey there, this is the first time I have read your blog and I thoroughly enjoyed it! As far as getting back into showing, that must be so exciting, I am lookingforward to that stroke of luck that will jet me back into the show arena! Good luck!