The Pony Project

You might recall my post about Teenager’s “pony project” sometime ago. When we purchased a project pony for Teenager a couple of winters ago, I hadn’t the faintest inkling I would fall in love with Pokey as much as I have.

She was brought home on a cold winter’s day, (along with another pony for younger daughter), as a project for Teenager to turn into a jumping pony.

This is what she looked like then.

Healthy as could be and with a pony attitude we couldn’t help but adore. That, and her one blue eye and second brown eye captured our interest. There were no bloodline considerations, nor athletic ability professed. We just bought her “as is” and waited for spring to see what we’d gotten ourselves into. Underneath all that shag, and much to our delight, Pokey shedded out into a pretty roan coat.

But best of all she took to the jumping ring. Took to it like a maniac.

Teenager has showed Pokey a few times over the past two years, but between academics, volleyball, 4-H, and other commitments, it’s come to this spring before she could really buckle down and take time to ride and jump with Pokey. And this past weekend, she signed up and showed her seriously for the first time.

The show was hosted by Willow Grove Stables, and the venue was the utterly picturesque Rocky Mountain Show Jumping, just south of Spruce Meadows, Calgary.

It’s really tough to attend a show in a setting like this. Gorgeous summer day, foothills backdrop, amazing facilities. I mean really, who thinks this stuff up?

Here’s a talented kid also showing for the first time in sometime –  on a warmblood named Achilles. I adore English barn names.

Coming from a western riding background, the entire English set is a tad foreign to me.

For instance, these are not socks Teenager’s coach is wearing, they are “zocks” my friends. Pay attention.

With Teenager’s fabulously talented coach at hand, I had little to do other than watch the classes and take in the incredible view. Of course, I shot a lot of photos.

A few of Pokey and Teenager.

Okay, actually, 267.

I’ll refrain from posting them all. But dang, they’ve come along, those two.

Just like any horse show, there is a myriad of horses – all shapes and colors.

And the great thing about show jumping is it’s strictly about athletic ability. Chopped mane or not, this guy took the championship – thereby giving hope to all of us who have encountered equally impressive bad hair days.

This is one my favorite shots of the day. Teenager’s coach Kim riding a magnificent warmblood appropriately named Lord Cord. He’s Pokey – with an exponent of x24. At the age of five, he is considered a youngster, and I believe this was his first show. He floated across the arena. Positively floated. I can’t wait to see him when he’s all grown up.

Did I just type that? Grown up?

Typical of any horse show there was a variety of dogs, mostly small.

Of course, Wee gravitated to them, and spent the morning contriving a deal with Mom surrounding good grades and best behavior in order to secure one for herself.

By noon, Teenager had finished (yep, that’s a reserve championship ribbon entwined in her fingers – yeah, kid!), and we headed off to an entirely different set.

The JDP Barrel Racing Classic! Where I snapped another hundred or so photos! So, be sure to check back tomorrow for the highlights of this unique barrel racing event.


  1. Holy lovely lightning (as my Irish father-in-law used to say)! English riders? Jumping? In a WHR blog? Personally, I love it (gorgeous warmblood indeed!), and Pokey is too cute! Who needs a little dog with a wee pony like that around?