We’ve been non-stop, and we’re both loving it. The sunshine has been somewhat of a permanent fixture for the last few weeks and it just gives you such a boost! Hector has been clipped again, as his coat was still rather thick and he’s much cooler now with it off. He had been getting quite sweaty even just on a walk hack, poor boy. This was my first time ever having to clip in summer – that half cob in Hector must make the difference!

I had set myself a summer goal that I wanted to jump our first course of 70cm before the end of summer, and we’ve only gone and done it already! Double clear, 60 & 70cm on our first trip to the local RC showfield. Hector was awesome and never looked at the fillers or anything else in the arena actually – he just seems to come alive when he’s in the ring! At home he can be silly and likes to take a good look at the fences before he goes, but for some reason out at a show, he just feels confident! We had a super day out there and even came home with a 3rd place ribbon! The following weekend we went off to the beautiful Dunecht estate for a hunter pace, if you remember I had taken Hector here back in September when I had only had him a few months, we had lots of green moments as we wiggled round the course, but this time – Hector was oozing confidence and loved cantering round the beautiful countryside track. We had one stop at the second to last fence where we both just didn’t really commit, it was 20degrees and we were both feeling tired so I wasn’t at all upset by his first stop, turned and faced the fence again and we were back on track! He also took a few minutes to go into the water! Strangely he had already been in this water the previous year no bother and had been cantering into the water every time we’ve been out training! Silly goose that he is! But he went through once he realised I wasn’t going to let him win! He absolutely flew over the final fence – I was so chuffed, it was a big (for us!) blue fence, painted with white clouds and had a big rainbow sat to the side of it. We had another fantastic day. So glad to be back out and about, getting some ‘miles’ under Hectors belt. I have no hopes of being an eventer, but its so good for him to see different things and have fun doing so!

This month I was lucky enough to be chosen as a sponsored rider by a local photographer. Vivienne came to meet Hector and I for our first shoot and the photos really did not disappoint! I cant wait to have my next shoot in my side saddle and new habit! It’s so exciting to dress up and pose for once rather than being behind the camera out at events! Thank you so much Vivienne Elizabeth Photography [Aberdeen/shire]. Check out her website if you fancy a shoot of your own!

Ugh – the dreaded grass..shot up quicker than Bolt comes out the starting blocks! We had some changes at the yard recently which unfortunately left only Hector and one other horse in their field, even with the boys fenced into about a sixth section of their field, there is still a lot of grass and he is looking chubby already! I bought him two muzzles, and the poor boy doesn’t seem to be able to figure either of them out. He comes in off the grass for a few hours and just goes to sleep, suggesting a definite grass coma!! He’s not even interested in hay when he is inside. As its my first summer with him I am conscious of how fat he might get and how quickly, also bearing laminitis in mind too. So, we need to be careful. His Honeychop lite and healthy is the best thing for him being so low in calories, he still gets a scoop with his balancer and supplements daily. Keeping his fibre intake up is hard when he’s not interested in his hay! So thank goodness for Honeychop. [Can also be fed as hay replacement!]

Next up on the cards for us…we have some lessons planned and a fun ride round a local farm track. We are due some rain now after our lovely sunny spell – so hopefully it wont “rain on our parade!”

Until next month,

Grace and Hector x