I got a wonderful surprise last night at our Texas Smokin Gun's Christmas party. Beri and I managed to accumulate enough points to win the club high point in our division. I was totally shocked because I hadn't expected anything at all, and am inordinately pleased with the award, the recognition, myself and my little mare.

We did have a good year -- a very good year, but it's been a year of learning from our mistakes, more than anything else.

- There were the shoots where we had trouble because we hadn't ridden enough between times
- and the shoots where she soured from going too often.

- and the weekends that family issues kept us home or elsewhere on the road,
- - as well as the *smacks forehead* hindsight of weekends we missed that we shouldn't have.

- We've changed saddles, bridles and bits (three times) and figured out the oddest thing that was bothering her, when we switched from 'roping reins' to 'split reins'... Beri's only 14.1hh and so the normal stock horse split reins were too long, the ends were tangling around her knees. It was a simple fix, we just cut them off.

- We've changed some of how we do our training at home, going back to some basics. It was a (mentally) difficult switch for me to going back to neck reining and more western work. I was 'raised western' (old school) "but I got better" (<= Monty Python "she turned me into a newt" reference) with the centered riding lessons, and the bits of dressage I've had and applied to my endurance and trail riding. All that said, I've never gone back and brought my western riding up to par and this sport has me started back on that journey.

- We had a good run for the AHA OEIP year-end recognition with the CMSA, but needed a couple more better runs to keep our points ahead -- CONGRATULATIONS Dottie!

I'm especially proud of our little Beri for stepping up to the plate and doing such a fantastic job with the shooting this year and just generally doing whatever needs to be done. In addition to the shooting, she added several rides to her endurance record this year and has become the 'go to girl' and grown into a good, solid all-around family horse.


L.A. Mitchell said...

That's fantastic, Sue. You must be so proud :)

Becky Burkheart said...

Thank you LA!

Val said...

Woot! Go Beri indeed!
[hey that's a good plan to link to ride history, now I can bore people w/Quig & Baraq-not-Obama's statistics! ;-)]

Becky Burkheart said...

Thanks Val!

There is a trick to getting to the history. You have to pull up your history and 'right click' on the horse and 'open in new window' in order to get the direct url to past. Email me if that doesn't work for you.

Anonymous said...

Way to go Becky! I know you worked hard for this. I've put this blog in my (brand new) newsgator feed reader so I can keep up. Perhaps unsurprisingly, it was hard for me to follow everyone's blogs when I had to remember the URL's off the top of my head ... no more.

Elena Tiriel said...

Oh! I just love the pictures here and at your fantasy stable, Becky! Especially the first one of Beri... she's just gorgeous, and she looks almost winsome in that photo! (And then I look up higher, and see the mischief your horses can do to their playthings...and realize the innocent look is all an act. LOL!)

- Barbara

Becky Burkheart said...

Hi Barbara! It's wonderful to hear from you here. :)

I'm glad you're enjoying the horses, they certainly keep me on my toes.

Becky Burkheart said...

Sonja! I must have missed your post?!? I'm not sure how. :(

I'm glad you're able to follow along. Come and ride again when you get the chance. :)