Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Hi honey! We're Home!

2 days, four stages, 14 hours driving, one ferry and 1000 kms later...

Phew! It's a long way. The boys behaved perfectly and arrived home in great condition, thanks in no small part to the helpfulness and hospitality of Gayle, Carolyn and Angie on the way and the great company of Victoria. We were all very glad to be home and have slotted back in to the routine of riding and everyday life. It's only two weeks today until the Grand National Show and we have plenty to do!

The family holiday was fantastic - we played tourist and visited family & friends and generally enjoyed beng together. We saw glowworms and caves and kiwi and sharks and waterfalls and climbed mountains and swam in the surf and rode hydroslides and water-skied and enjoyed the hot pools and ate good food (including New Zealands best ice-creams at Pokeno) and drank good wine and fished and saw the New Year in in the rain under a leaking awning at the Raglan campgrounds (the rain stopped long enough for some incredible fireworks) and it was brilliant!
Some pictures from our holiday:

The kids enjoying a cart ride with Steve & Crystal from Brooklands.

Harper & Clive on the beach at the Raglan estuary.

Bridal Veil Falls, Raglan.

A shark eyeing me up off Motiti in the Bay of Plenty. No swimming off the boat for us that day!

The best ice-cream in New Zealand - Pokeno of course!

And while all this was going on I managed to ride the boys and had lessons most days. The training was awesome. The difference when there are knowledgeable eyes on the ground day in and day out is incredible. I am so excited by the future for both of them and just hope I can keep the momentum going now we are home. Bill is down next weekend again for two days which will help. There weren't many photos taken and none of Da Vinci, but you might enjoy these of Gosh.

Warming up in working trot.Some piaffe steps.Working Canter.

And just to prove that the hard work is universal, here I am training the pirouettes - with no stirrups!

And because I know you'll all enjoy this - I managed to fall off Gosh for the first time ever! Just a silly spook that caught me unawares, the only thing hurt was my pride. If you're unaware just how talented Gosh is at this unrequired movement, you may want to check out this old video.

I will leave you with that, I still have a horse to ride and boxes to muck and with two kids at home to entertain that's an afternoon full!