Thursday, October 3, 2013

A Rather Shallow Post About Ribbons.

If you are showing and, say, over the age of 14ish, the inevitable question becomes what to do with the ribbons. You can't just throw them out, can you? After all, even if I only enter one division (4 classes) and place in every class, I've probably "paid" about $100 per ribbon ;-) if you total coaching at the show, trailering, braiding, and show fees. And that is a conservative amount, depending on your level.  Not that you should total it that way...but it is one metric ;-)

Yet I also can't (and don't want to) put them on my bedroom wall like I did as a child.

I envy those with a barn of their own to put them in, like Littlekeebler:

It seems so appropriate and not cheesy at all in that context!

My ribbons collected with each show and I did display them on my locker in the tack room for a few days after each show but then they came home and sat on top of my wardrobe of riding the basement.

Ok, so my basement is nicely finished and my riding wardrobe area is not exactly basemet-like. Still, they sat up there, on top of the wardrobe, unseen.

I had idly mentioned to my husband that I should do something with those ribbons but didn't know what, since it seemed superficial and juvenile. He agreed that I couldn't just dispose of them and we mentioned some possibilities but it was extremely non-commital as we were doing other things at the time.

And then one day I came home from the barn, brought my stuff downstairs, and saw this:

Doing laundry is just a little sweeter now that I get a reminder of what a great season we had in educating both Armani and me to the show world. We realized success that I never thought I would be capable of - we finished the season as Reserve Champion Green Hunters (7 shows) and fourth in the Hack Division with only 3 shows entered in that division. I will remind my American friends that in Canada red is 1st place.

In the Greens we were beat by a 10 year old school horse and they happened to attend a few shows that had a ton of entries (hence more points) that we did not attend. I will come second to that combo of experience from horse and rider any day. The fact my 4 yr old with me as his rider who hasn't shown since a child and never in hunters, did so well is amazing to me. He is number one no matter what as far as I'm concerned. What a horse.

On another note, now that I've seen this, I think one of my h/j pet peeves might be tiny ribbons by some shows and huge ribbons by others. While I love the massive ribbons and "hate" the tiny ones (really, most of those champion ribbons don't look like anything much especially when they use black!), I would be happier if they were at least consistent.

Told you it was a shallow post! Heehee.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Hunter Princess Blog Hop - An Annoying H/J Trend.

Having just completed my first show season, I am new enough to Hunter Land that I am not too annoyed by anything just yet, nor am I "in the know" enough about the trends, as I stuck to very classic hunter turnout. Sure, I wish the shows would always base the striding on a 12' stride (sometimes they've used 11.5'). But I know they do that to be "kind" to our greenies (I showed Green Hunter this year), so it's not really annoying.

I do find poor sportsmanship annoying, but that certainly isn't the exclusive domain of hunter/jumpers!

One thing I do find  annoying, and I will admit it's rather petty, is the trend around here to have nameplates on everything.

Now don't get me wrong, when I bought Armani last year, one of my biggest little-girl thrills was getting him a halter name plate. I was actually almost disappointed (although very appreciative) when my friend bought me one as a Christmas present. I just wanted to pick it for myself and hers wasn't what I would have chosen. So I got an "everyday" leather halter and a nameplate of my choosing. Gotta fulfill the dream, you know.

From I highly recommend
these tags - excellent quality and they do 
custom work such as name plate size.

When I bought my first new saddle the year before, I was thrilled to have my own nameplate on it. However, that is as far as I go with plating my tack. I certainly have had the urge to put name plates on everything, especially when I thought I lost my $250 girth...but I have refrained. I figure if someone wanted to steal the girth they would simply remove the plate. Although it also means that a good samaritan wouldn't know who to try to track down. Hmm.

I've seen hunters at shows with name plates on their bridle, girth, standing martingale, and saddle.

Admittedly, I stole these from the internet at large.
I don't have any creepy stalker photos of fellow competitors' name plate excess.

I find it a little much. Mostly, I find it distracting, much like the extra bling that Lauren mentions in her original post. Perhaps also a little too...I don't know, self-important?

What do you think? Do you like having plates on some tack and not others?  All of it? Has it ever served a practical purpose or is it all mostly just the same sense of pride you get from your first halter or saddle plate?