So a lot has happened this past year in regarding to my horsey hobby!

I moved barns in February of this year! Zalsa is now out at Raintree Ranch in NewCastle. I am so thrilled with my decision. I now have access to two wonderful trainers and an amazing facility. Things have been sort of a roller coaster since the move – but that is life with horses. When switching facilities I unfortunately also had to switch farriers, which meant my sensitive mare getting some new shoes and new angles. Unfortunately she did not agree with the new shoes and shortly afterwards in April let me know by not having that great of a first show to the season. Unfortunately with horses, they cannot just tell us what is wrong, so an ultrasound and two heel blocks later we discovered that she was just foot sore. Thank goodness! Onto the second new farrier, and her feet are coming around! Yippie!

I am still so totally stocked with my two wonderful trainers! I cannot express the appreciation to all they have done for Zalsa and myself. I am so lucky to have access to them on a daily basis. Along with the new facility, new trainers, and new farrier, I now have a wonderful new vet! She is out at Raintree almost everyday so it’s always nice to have a second pair of eyes when you can’t quite figure out if something should be a concern or not.

Overall the show season has been a blast! The rocky start in March left me hungry for more. Two shows later, Zalsa and I placed 4th at the May Woodside Event at training level. Plans are to move to Prelim sometime in the fall. I gave Zalsa a nice mid-season break at the beginning of June and we are finally back into full work! I seriously cannot handle not being able to ride my own horse. I do love to help others at LLE by offering to ride their horses, but no horse is quite as fun as Zalsa!

So onto the latest news – having Zalsa back into full work after her small break, LLE went to Woodside to school the cross country course in preparation for the show in August. Woodside is one of my favorite places to school so I was totally stoked, plus I would be schooling all the prelim. I have been schooling prelim since February, but never a full course – usually just a few of the combos. Anyhow so I was totally ampted. Lauren had a large group of students, along with Teresa and her student, so we had 7 horses total. We decided since most were training level and below that we would follow the BN-T tracks and jump the prelim out of order. First two prelim fences I point Zalsa at she jumps them beautifully. At this point I need to remember to keep my horse moving forward, the larger prelim tables you need the added momentum…. Check… onto the water complex. I walk Zalsa around in it for a while, and Lauren’s other students start with the “new” training downbank into the water. I say new since it was built for the may course, with last years water entry on the other side. Anyhow I have already done this down bank before with success so I was ready for it. I know Zalsa does not like this new location, but she puts up with it and into the water we go. This is when the unexpected happens….

From my point of view-- Land in the water, something is wrong and Zalsa’s front end comes up with her front feet out in front of her. I see two legs in my field of vision. I am thinking oh crap something is not right. Next thing I know she brings her front end up again this time higher but with her feet underneath her. I am already unseated at this point and very concerned something is horribly wrong with my horse. I am mostly off, so I know I am not going to fight it and while falling to the ground think “oh I get to test my airvest out – I haven’t had one go off on my before” so one loud pop later and I am laying on the very hard sloping gravel edge of the water complex. I hear multiple people yelling at me to stay still. My vest if inflated and I have my arms crossed over my chest. The vest surprisingly did not knock the wind out of me, but at think point my legs are on fire! Everyone is still yelling at me to stay still and I proceed to just lay there with my eyes closed very still…. Lauren, Teresa and Vicky are instantly around me asking if I am ok. I take a moment to slightly bend my legs (since I landed like a log with them completely straight) and they are both moving, however with large amounts of pain… Vicky takes my now deflating airvest, and Lauren is off to grab Zalsa. I take a few moments to bend my body around so my head isn’t sloping down towards the water and I get up. I think the first words out of my mouth are – “what did my horse just do” – lauren informs me that Zalsa has pulled and shoe and broken her breakplate. I of course and totally bummed because this means the schooling day is most likely over for me. Second words out of mouth to lauren “oh nooo! Will you come back to woodside??” – at this point Lauren knows I am totally fine…

At this point we still don’t totally know what happened. Multiple people saw some different angles and nothing really seems to add up. Conclusion is that we think Zalsa upon landing in the water, clipped her front bell boot and shoe with a hind leg. Freakout moment #1 -- she flings her front legs out in front of her, which them caused her breastplate to snap from her girth and hit her square in the face. As everyone knows my horse already has an issue with things around her face, so freakout moment #2. End result – broken breastplate, floating shoe and bellboot in the water, and me testing out my airvest.

Fortunately we are both fine. I was able to get Zalsa’s shoe tacked back on and we were able to walk around the course minus the breakplate. I see a large amount of water schooling in my future, since I am pretty sure she blames the water for the mishap. I am generally ok—cut up elbows are minimal, two very sore and bruised thighs, and one nasty wound on my hip. Sunday and Monday were rough for me -- Adi and Haley helped on Sunday since Bryan was out of town. Lots of icing and I feel like I can probably get back on by Thursday. Zalsa gets a nice tune up from Sabine in the meantime :)

There is nothing like an update without photos! So here are some:

 Zalsa and I at the Greg Best Clinic
 Zalsa and I at the Greg Best Clinic

 Zalsa loves Adi
 Little Lauren capturing my warmup for woodside
March Twin
 Zalsa loving Raintree ranch
 new blanket for Zalsa
 Todd's came to visit and I got Kiley on a horse!!!! She loved it!!!
 kumo sleeping with his tounge out
 This is adison -- on our way home from a horse show -- she someone ended up with Soda in her Swedish fish bag -- we still do not know how this happened
 Me on Vinnie at Horse Expo -- here we are doing canter pirouette's -- A very special thanks to Sabine and Vicky for letting me ride!!!
 Me showing off my new boots from Argentina -- I look a little crazed in this photo.... oh well!
 kumo loves the lawn!

 New Saddle for Zalsa -- just had to get the red piping!!!!
My helpers on our way home from Woodside -- I needed ice for my legs and Adi and Haley had to get them from the cooler in the back without spilling any ice... ahhahah it was entertaining to say the least