Having those 2 1/2 weeks off did allow me to ride mornings, which I had never done before. I liked it! Only other person ever riding was the BO / trainer - quiet - Riva was always ready to go. Our barn switches to night turn out in the summer. I would arrive soon after they came in, before Riva had a chance to begin her day long napping under her fan.
But, the best part of my time off was the past 1/2 week. My daughter, Alexis, was fortunate to get to attend Event Camp at Come Again Farms in Sheridan. The horse she qualified for Regionals on and was supposed to take to event camp, was moved to another facility in June, so her trainer was searching for a replacement for Lex to take to camp. Trainer was able to borrow a sale horse from a facility in Chicago where she regulary visits to give lessons.
Lillith arrived two weeks prior to camp at the barn where Alexis is a working student. Super cute black warmblood cross mare, just 5 years old, with no previous jump experience, never been off the property, only ridden indoors, basic w/t/c training only.
Lex and Lillith on the last day of camp:
Lex really enjoyed this mare - super sweet and up for everything, from stadium to cross country to dressage - just took it all in stride. Many times during camp, she was the 'leader'. Walked right in to the water jump like an old pro, jumped up and down banks, ditches, nothing fazed her.
They ended up getting a private lesson with Dorothy Crowell on the last day, due to the other camper that was scheduled for the same stadium lesson had her horse come up lame.
I was able to audit on the first three days of camp, but sadly had to go back to work on the fourth day. I learned a boat load from all the trainers and watching the various campers. Clinicians at the camp were: Dorothy Crowell, Leslie Law, Sharon White, Jennifer Kaiser, and Jennifer Conour. Lex got to take at least one lesson with each of them. What a great bunch of trainers - all so down to earth and approachable.
It was great to watch the progress - esp on x-country - of many of the adult women participating in the Green as Grass and Starter divisions. I witnessed several woman jump solid obstacles for the very first time, canter and gallop in open fields, and jump a stadium course. Fun bunch of women and a few men.
Maybe next year...