I had been working on lots of exciting new things when Mr. Spicey was so suddenly taken from us last week.  I considered scrapping my ideas all together.  I considered closing the website altogether.  I considered giving up horses (as would be so easy to do at this point with a 3 month old baby).  However none of this would be honoring my connection with this fantastic boy I was blessed to know and learn so much from.  Stopping would be easy…but throwing away everything I’d learned, dreamed, worked on and gone through to avoid any more pain would be stupid.  I’m going to continue on…I’m not sure exactly how that is going to look yet, but I’m going to.

I found Spice through simple coincidence (a Facebook ad the day I found out Champ was too injured to continue).  So right now I’m asking for a little help from the universe again (and all of my horsey family).  I need help with my next step.

What I really am looking for is another horse…and not just any horse.  I really am looking for another schoolmaster to help me finish my Silver Medal…and my Gold.  I’d like to keep learning.  I am considering taking a training opportunity and turning in my adult ammy card if I can’t find the right fit, but I’d really like something I can keep learning on so that I can better train a future horse for myself or others.  Maybe you can help or know someone that can.

My future partner:

Goal:  To finish my USDF Silver medal and work towards my Gold medal and learn how to ride piaffe/passage and further develop my dressage.  To share horse with trainer so she can finish her Grand Prix scores for her Gold Medal (she missed out last time she had the opportunity due to having to return the horse because she broke her femur…).  Also a new face horse for Decidedly Equestrian for a while.  I love to feature lots of horses, but I really think it’s easier to write if I have one consistent partner.
Sex: Gelding or mare is fine, but prefer geldings due to stall situation.
Height: 16.1hh – 17.2hh preferred (I’m tall but my trainer isn’t).
Color: irrelevant
Breed: irrelevant
Training:  Shown through Grand Prix.  Will consider one trained through I2/GP and shown to PSG/I1 as well, but must have confirmed piaffe/passage (as that’s a big hole in my learning right now).
Age:  Not picky.
Soundness:  serviceably sound fine.  Must be able to be ridden several days a week and shown once a month and hold up.  Right now I ride 4 days a week.  Must be sound enough for showing (some maintenance fine) and not a horse that is so out of shape it is going to take a year to get it back to FEI work preferably unless you want to put it back in work for a while before I take it.  I would like to be able to show it PSG in the next 6 months.
Temperament:  does not need to be a bombproof adult ammy horse.  I prefer a horse with a little something and prefer a forward/hotter horse.  I will ride a horse that has more whoa than go also.  No rodeo bucking (occasional happy bucks are fine).  No flipping over backwards type rearing.  Don’t mind some spooking.  Don’t mind having to finesse the contact.  Would prefer horse that is well schooled and light on the aids of course.
Must have: good canter (I’m used to riding a thoroughbred after all and I love enthusiastic canters), nice 4 beat walk, would prefer a horse that isn’t a jackhammer in the trot, but can deal with it. Doesn’t need to score a 68% at Grand Prix or go to championships or even be competitive in local classes, but the horse must be able to physically still get that 60%+ with a rider that isn’t Isabell Werth or Charlotte Dujardin.  I do prefer a horse (due to recent loss of the most amazing horse on the planet) that has not had colic surgery, doesn’t regularly colic and hasn’t had a major colic scare.  I knew going in with Spice that I would likely lose him that way…I just really didn’t want it to be so soon.  I’m not sure emotionally I can take another one of those so quickly…but will consider it if otherwise a perfect situation.
Price:  A lease.  I want something to learn on for the next year or so, not necessarily my lifetime competition horse (unless you have the perfect one…and we can talk about it).  My budget is not high due to current life situation (new baby, job change situations, etc).  Would prefer a care lease (and the horse would be in excellent care at a training/show barn).
Timeline:  Horse doesn’t have to be available right now, but would love to have a timeline for something to look forward to.  Would lease the horse for a minimum of one year.
Location:  Prefer something in California or West Coast or a not too long trip away, but will consider others.
Care:  Horse would be at a training barn in Castro Valley, CA (a wonderful Bay Area micro-climate where it’s never super hot or cold).  Your horse will have its choice of grass or alfalfa hay as well as Elk Grove Stable Mix pellets and be fed THREE times a day by facility + grain/supplements as 4th meal.  Horse will live in a 12′ x 12′ box stall with a 24′ x 12′ paddock covered in rubber matting.  Stalls are cleaned and bedded with bagged shavings 7 days a week. All arenas are groomed twice a day.  24 hour care and locked gates at night.  Miles of trails on site for cross training, jump arenas also available for low jumping/poles cross training if requested.
Care for this horse would be outstanding.  I have plenty of people that would give references for me (and you can always check out this page, my Instagram/Facebook to see how pampered Spice was).  I took him on as a 20 year old and treated him like the king he was.  He was in excellent condition the day he passed with dapples, a shine like the sun and beautiful muscling.  I would love to do that again for another horse.
I would have weekly lessons with the horse as well as regular in barn clinics with judge and grand prix rider Heidi Gaian and former Mexican Olympic Team Coach for Eventing and former USEA President Brian Sabo (he has excellent dressage credentials having grown up learning from the master Hilda Gurney).  Other clinicians we have the opportunity to ride with we will as well.
Gear:  Would prefer he come with is bits he’s used to, but happy to purchase bits for him if you can tell me the exact ones he goes well in (not a fan of messing with what is already working).  I ride in a Custom Saddlery saddle and will have Custom rep come out and refit/reflock the saddle for your horse and buy the appropriate sized girth.  Will buy whatever half pads/pads situations necessary to make horse comfortable and happy.  Trainer will ride in either the same saddle or her Devoucoux Makila Harmonie (she’s sponsored by them), depending on the fit.  In other words, whatever makes the horse happy, healthy, comfortable and sound is what we will use.

Maybe you have an older competitor beyond the age of selling that used to be a competition horse for a trainer?  Or a horse that you don’t quite want to sell because you love him, but would love to see him not sitting and going to waste?  Or maybe you are pregnant or injured or at a different change of life and not going to ride for a while and would like to have your horse stay in work?  Or something simi-retired due to the fact that the scores aren’t as high as they used to be, or not high enough to be competitive and the rider has moved on to other younger/more talented horses?  Or maybe you just like me and want to give me a shot on your nice horse?  Or maybe you want to see your horse become a minor celebrity by being featured on Decidedly Equestrian so often everyone knows as much about your horse as you do (lol).  Who knows!  I’m open to however this is going to happen.

I don’t think this is a really a unicorn (though some might think so)…I know several of these types now that happen to not be available for one reason or another.  If you happen to have my next partner or know of him…please get in touch with me!  I’d love to talk to you about him.

Thank you Universe for sending me the perfect horse last time and thank you readers, friends and Universe for working on sending me the perfect next horse.