Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Photo updates

For a photo album of Megan's Birthday party, click here.
And here for the highlights from a BBQ we attended where half the guest list were dogs.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Megan's Birthday Cake

Megan's birthday was on Saturday, so I baked her a cake. It was my first time using fondant, so I tried something simple, but I love how it turned out!

Here's the birthday girl. I can't believe my little sister is 25!

The cake was good and the buttercream that I used under the fondant was delicious. But we all agreed... fondant tastes pretty gross. Pretty to look at, though!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Area VII Adult Riders' Camp

Last weekend, April 30 through May 3, I attended USEA Area VII's Adult Rider's Camp. It was a weekend full of lessons with 5 different trainers from around the country. I had two dressage lessons, two cross country lessons, and one stadium jumping lesson. I rode with Kyle Carter, from the Canadian Olympic team, Steuart Pittman a well known US eventer, and Jonathan Elliot who owns Aspen Farms. The camp was held at Aspen, and it was beautiful!

Jack was a good boy all weekend. He got a little crazy for our first dressage lesson with Steuart. The dressage arenas were secluded from the rest of the jumping and cross country areas, so Jack felt very alone and upset. He did a little bucking, too, when we were asking him to be round at the canter! Steuart said he was "quite fancy" though, and said my position was good, so I took that as a compliment!

He apparently worked out all his frustration, because our following stadium lesson was a blast. Jon said that Jack had a great gallop, and we just rocked every fence. Jack did everything perfectly and I felt like my position was really solid.

Our first cross country lesson with Kyle started in sun, and ended in pouring rain! It absolutely dumped buckets of sideways rain on us. Jack was mad that we kept working in the rain, and did some more bucking. Once the rain let up, though, we happily galloped through the water and jumped in and out of it over a small jump.

Can you tell how wet we are? Not a dry spot on us, and my navy vest looks black!

The next day's lesson with Jonathan was much nicer. Jack was amazing! We got to practice galloping up and down hills. We both were having a lot of fun!

We got to do the ditch a lot, and I really learned a lot from Jon about how to ride it in a more balanced position. Jack never hesitated, and sometimes jumped really big over the ditch!

This log was fun to gallop up a steep hill, jump, and gallop down a long gradual hill afterwards. It was harder to jump the other way, going down the steep hill, but was good practice. I love Jack's face in this picture. So cute!

Here we are with our friends Sharon and Simon. Jack and Simon are travelling buddies. We rode down in Sharon's trailer and spent time with them all weekend. We had the best time in our cross country lesson together. We were proud of our non-ditchy horses since Jack and Simon did so well.

Jack was very tired by our last dressage lesson with Kyle, but that's okay. We had a great weekend and it was great to be successful in a new setting and with different instructors. It will be fun to apply some of the things we learned and also have new things to work on with Anne at home.