Here's to a successful 2019

Not too sure where this year has gone, it seems like only a couple of weeks ago it was October and now its 2019 in a couple of days!!!!

The past couple of months we've been concentrating on flat work and the basics of jumping. We've been to a couple of dressage shows, including one where my instructor rode for me, bless her she got slated but when watching the video back she could see what the judge meant by the comments which has also helped me when she has been teaching. Next trip out was to a venue I'd always avoided as I thought it was a little too proper (SJ is lovely, but dressage there really intimidated me).

I needn't have worried, Murphy seemed to prefer it as a venue and had I have remembered the test we would've scored pretty well. Still I did, but we didn't come last, which is an achievement in itself!!!!!

I also went away for an Olivia Towers dressage camp, which I would highly recommend. Not only did she give me some really good hints and tips, (Murphy was on amazing ginger loon form on the second day) but the mindset chat was really insightful and, so far, very useful.

Jumping is also coming along, we've been concentrating on rhythm and approach, keeping it small and steady which is building both our confidence. The highlight was a 4 jump grid with 1 stride distance between each, something we have not managed to achieve before especially in such a lovely rhythm. Perfect way to end our last lesson of 2018.

Looking very pleased with himself after an amazing lesson

The plans for 2019 have now been put on paper, hopefully this will be our year. We're aiming for the Hannah Francis ODE in July, which should be achievable, but after going from jumping a small course of 80cm in April to having a stop which completely killed Murphy's (and in turn my) confidence we're taking it steady and have fun in the process.

It's sometimes so easy to get caught up in the here and now you forget how far you've come. The first picture is when first signed up for the challenge in 2016, the second a month or so back.

On the left one of our first flat lessons after I bought him in 2016, the right a dressage test in Nov 18

Since being accepted as a Wobbleberry I've had my humerus pinned, concussion and numerous bruises, but I've learnt so much, our partnership has come on so much and his excitable moments don't phase me like they did. He's still 17hh of pure gingerness but I wouldn't change him for the world. It's amazing to see how much both our confidence has grown as has our trust in each other. This bond and concentrating on the basics as we have will hopefully make for a successful 2019.

Happy New Year everyone

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