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Blogger Lauren Sprieser

May 23, 2011

The Unexpected

Greetings from Long Valley, N.J., where Ella, Tres and I have come for our monthly dose of Michael. Putting Tres on the van was a relatively last-minute decision, one marking the end of a three-week period of mental twistiness.

May 10, 2011

Emergency Fried Chicken

Scott Hassler stayed after the show to spend Monday morning at the farm to teach. We were all pretty beat, but Scott was his high-energy self, and we had a great clinic.

May 9, 2011

CDCTA At Morven, Where Tres Embraces The Derby

Team Sprieser went to its first show of the 2011 season this weekend, a little recognized show at Morven Park run by CDCTA, the Commonwealth Dressage & Combined Training Association. I love the CDCTA shows; something about their management versus the dressage-only GMOs keeps things much more low-key and real.

I took Tres to show myself, as well as one of my dearest clients on her hot little Thoroughbred-cross. The fates must not have known I was showing because it didn't rain—a true miracle.

May 5, 2011

Corinne And Dobbin Come To Play

I've spent most of my friendship with my saddle fitter buddy, Colleen Meyer, hearing about how great event rider Corinne Ashton is. And that's true. Corinne trained Dobbin, her Thoroughbred, to tremendous success at the upper levels of eventing, including USEA Horse of the Year at advanced in 2008 and two tours around Rolex Kentucky.

April 28, 2011

The Doldrums

Catherine and Kirsten are contesting the World Cup, Sinead's at Rolex, Jennie's off winning something, Elizabeth's daughter is probably off winning something, and I'm… well, I'm at home, not doing much of anything. This lineup of bloggers is really giving me quite the inferiority complex.

April 25, 2011

Warp Speed Easter

It is 5 p.m. on Easter Sunday. Ella and I are in New Jersey, and we're going as fast as we possibly can. And all I can think is, DAMN those STUPID CADBURY MINI-EGGS to HELL.

April 15, 2011

Losses And Gains

The dressage world lost and gained this week. The loss was Howard Nelson, who, along with his longtime partner Lisa Froelig, ran Silverwood Farm in Wisconsin. Silverwood played a huge role in my life as a young dressage competitor in the Midwest. It's an amazing facility, and Howard's ceaseless dedication to it took it from just another facility to one of the best around, home to countless shows including qualifiers for the NAYRC, young horse championships and national championships.

April 12, 2011

I'm Just A Teenage Dirtbag, Baby

I've found there are two places in a warmblood's life where, if he's going to be a wee bit naughty, he does so. One is the 5-year-old year. Like their two-legged, 15-year-old counterparts, 5 seems to be the year for warmbloods to push boundaries, especially 5-year-old boy horses.

The other place is the place somewhere between first-ish and second-ish level, when the half-halt has to become less of a subtle rebalancing and more of a SIT DOWN NOW, when the croup really has to lower, when the hocks and stifles really have to go to work.

April 6, 2011

Customer Service

A new horse came to me on April 1, a gorgeous mare that—because of the way the sale market is going—the previous trainer had been unsuccessful in selling.

Naturally, as soon as she showed up at my door, one of the previous trainer's clients called and said, “Oh no, she's gone? I simply MUST have her! Get her back, and here's a check.”

The owner called me and asked me what I thought. "Take it!" I told her. "I can have her ready to go in 10 minutes. When are they picking her up?"

April 4, 2011

Home, No Foolin'

I had this swell plan for an absurd April Fool's Day blog post, something where I decided on my drive home to give up dressage to raise alpacas, or to adopt a baby from Nigeria, or something else harebrained.

Instead, I've had a few distractions over the last few days.

First, I realized in packing the trailer that I'd forgotten hay bags. So off to the store I go, where my only options are haynets. My trailer's just not easily set up for haynets, so I end up jerry-rigging them up, complete with bailing twine and duct tape.

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