Tuesday, March 31, 2015

q1 review and q2 goals

Starting in January I adjusted my goal-setting parameters to a quarterly timeline instead of monthly. The idea was to allow for more scope in the goals - without overwhelming myself.

This first set of goals still ended up being a bit thin for the three month period... but that's ok bc it was the worst of winter and things were unpredictable. 

2015 Q1 Goals:

  • Start working on preliminary show schedules for the year. BOOM. See my events page, updated regularly :) {not that it made any difference in actually making it to the shows we scheduled ... damn winter}
  • Dressage lessons - where art thou? This was a major struggle (and not for lack of trying). I would have counted the Fix-a-Test show as a quasi-lesson... except it didn't happen. We managed a clinic with Grant Schneidman, which was great, tho his recommendation was also: take lessons (I know dude... trust me I know!). 
We got in under the wire by squeezing in a lesson with a new trainer last week, with another scheduled for this weekend. If the program sticks this goal is solidly in hand (fingers crossed!). Otherwise? Back to the drawing board... 
we are NOT Hawley Bennett yet lol
nope. not yet. haha. hahaha.

  • Introduce more ground work (including long lining) when riding becomes impossible due to weather. Eh... we lunged a couple times? Like when Isabel dumped my new saddle in the driveway (rude!), and when it was snowy out. I still want to try long lining tho!

also this happened again bc isabel is a saint

  • Explore alternative schooling arenas if Isabel's ring at home continues to deteriorate. Yep this happened. We aimed for twice weekly schoolings at FV (or wherever was available) from mid-January through March, and weekly lessons at OF. I worried that the frequent travel was a LOT for the horses... Plus it meant an uptick in costs (fuel, arena fees) and time commitments (hour round trip to the arena). BUT the difference in the quality of work was immediately apparent. #worthit
'what, this little oxer? nbd' - isabel

  • New saddle options? YESSS!!!! We got a new-to-us saddle and fit it to Ms Princess and I couldn't be happier! Thanks again to everyone who commented along the way - whether to share your own experiences, give advice, or even just to offer encouragement :) To read all the posts related to the process, click here.
third time's the charm when it comes to trial saddles
(i swear isabel isn't as depressed as she looks - she's just eating hay out of the trailer lol)

  • Get Wick (friend B's leased OTTB) loading/unloading well enough to be deemed road-worthy. Then he and B can start accompanying us to weekly OF lessons!!! This was the first 2015 goal knocked off the list - and was a smashing success! B and Wick are our official eventing partners in crime - and I love it!! 

2015 Q2 goals:

  • Monthly confo shots. Just dooooooo it!
  • Dressage lessons!!!! Would like every other week / twice monthly
  • Another saddle fitting to address squishy panels
  • Isabel's 6month chiro appt
  • More no-stirrups work (dropping outside stirrup on a circle counts). long term goal: independent seat!
  • Improve canter transitions - both up and down
  • Actually, improve all transitions - ride from seat
  • Earn a score < 40% (measuring faults) on a dressage test
  • Finish with a number at our first horse trial
  • Take a lesson with Sally Cousins? 
  • Move up? Go BN at an event (a CT would count, as would a 2'6" division at an h/j show)


  1. You did great this quarter! Seriously cannot give you enough props for all that trailering out!

    1. thanks!! i'm really happy that we managed to stay in mostly regular work -- definitely makes preparing for show season easier!

  2. Love all the trailering out you guys did!

    Also (and excuse my ignorance), but what does "finish with a number" mean?

    1. thanks! 'finish with a number' refers to the final score at an event. the score is calculated by adding up faults. so you start with a dressage test that is scored as a percentage of errors (ie 39% faults is equivalent to a dressage score of 61% at a pure dressage show). then any time faults or rails down or refusals incurred during the stadium and cross country phases add numeric faults to this score. at the end of the day, if you completed each phase your score is a number.

      however, if you didn't complete - let's say you fell off (RF - rider fall) or missed a fence (TE - technical elimination), or retired bc it wasn't your horse's day (R) your score just becomes those letters.

      so my goal is essentially to complete the competition, regardless of score - meaning it's ok if we score badly, i just want to finish!

  3. You're kicking butt on your goals! I see Hawley B in the making :)

  4. I would say that this was quite the success! Even with the horrible weather. Bad weather aside, I have a feeling you will be able to accomplish all of your goals with gusto this quarter!

    1. thanks - i really hope so!! horses have a funny way of screwing with all our well laid plans... but i'm really gonna try!

  5. What excellent, excellent goals!

  6. Nice job, and good work for sticking through the winter with trailering out and getting it done. The time and effort definitely shows!

    1. it was certainly a lot of time and effort haha... but i'm hopefully that it pays dividends

  7. Good job! I need to start doing these

    1. thanks! the goals really help keep me on track - i definitely recommend!

  8. Great job and good luck with your goals!

  9. Dang girl- you knocked out some huge goals! Can't wait to hear about the next quarter :)

    1. thanks - i'm pretty pleased with how it all went - trying to set us up for a solid year :)

  10. awesome! i love that you broke things down into manageable chunks :)

    1. thanks! goal setting is always a balancing act, but i'm a big believe in setting oneself up for success haha


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