I didn't set any goals for myself in 2011... well, I had one goal and that was to have a sound horse by the end of the year. Even though we're still having a few issues here and there, my horse is sound and happy and I am so grateful for that! We're riding on a consistent basis and even ended the year with a successful show. I hope 2012 brings us more happy memories!
Hooves, hooves, hooves! I want to continue to work on Lilly's hooves and the thickness of her soles. X-rays will be in order again later in the year to see how much they've grown since the x-rays in 2011.
I want to stay consistent in my riding and work Lilly at a minimum of three days per week, although four is preferred. It's good for her hooves, great for her conditioning, and if we intend to show (which we do!) we need to work on a number of things to be competitive. I'm excited to see how she progresses with such consistent work.
For those three and four day work weeks, I want to go into the arena with a plan. Too often I find myself "just riding" without any goals in mind and without a purpose. Sometimes it's fun to just enjoy my horse, but Lilly needs direction and in order to keep us both focused, I want to have exercises to work on and goals to work toward.
I would love to take some lessons. This might not be the year to start having regular lessons because of wedding costs, but maybe I can take a lesson here and there. Ideally, I would prefer to take lessons on someone else's horse so I can get a better gauge of my riding skills. After riding my friend's horse a couple times over the past month I've realized that I can ride Lilly pretty darn well, but stick me on a different horse and things tend to fall apart. It's a bit embarrassing...
I really want to get a western saddle. Again, there's the whole wedding-gotta-save-money thing, but I'm hoping I can find something suitable for us to use even if it isn't the saddle I really want. That can always come later on.
My main goal for 2012 is to keep Lilly healthy and happy! I want her to see a chiropractor early this year and also investigate the possible UFP. She's already lost some weight (had to use the next hole up on the girth!) and I think she's looking good!
If this was a normal year (i.e. not the year I get married!) I would probably set a few more show related goals for us to work toward. Because of time constraints and a need to save money for the wedding, the actual 2012 show season will be scaled down a bit.
We won't be able to show at the State Fair since I'll be on my honeymoon, which would normally be a goal, but I want to attend at least one show every other month. September would be one of those months, but I'll be getting married on the 29th, so September is out. Right now I only have 4 shows lined up, but some of the possible show circuits don't have their dates out yet, so that could change. I added a gadget on the side to keep track.
I'm hoping our show in July will be a Paint show because I would love to get another more novice/amateur point this year with Lilly! I won't make the novice/amateur point a goal, though... PAC points are much more realistic for us at this point and I hope to get at least five more showmanship points and three performance points.
I'm very excited about what 2012 holds! May it be a great year for all of us and our horses! :)