Wednesday, October 13, 2010

A Rising Star

I am pleased to introduce to you the newest up-and-coming equestrian in my family (including me, that makes two of us), my adorable little niece.  From the looks of these photos, she's clearly a natural (she gets that from me).  I already have visions of the leadline class at Devon... Pony Finals... Washington... Harrisburg... Junior Hunter Finals in Lexington... the Maclay... the USET....  Oh, being an Aunt is so fun.  I can't wait to buy this child a pony.

Eyes up and smiling... she'll have no problem winning a leadline class.
Plus, she's a horse whisperer.  The pony's so relaxed that his eyes are closed.

She even has her heels down...  Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum -- look out!
(Note: I sent this photo to George Morris.  His only comment was that the pony should be braided and clipped, but was otherwise highly complimentary of her perfect form.) 

The handsome devil in the background is my wonderful brother (who's also the rising star's beaming dad).  For some reason, he seems a little troubled by my plan to show up on her 5th birthday with a pony in tow, wrapped in a big red bow of course.  But as far as I'm concerned, it's a done deal.  What child wouldn't want a pony for her 5th birthday?  Besides, based on the exceptional natural talent evidenced by these photos, we'd be doing her a major disservice if we didn't get her a pony. 

Okay, in fairness, this plan could -- possibly -- hold some personal interest for me.  I never quite got over the day that I walked into the barn before my riding lesson to see an adorable little gray pony standing on the cross-ties, covered in pink and purple bows.  My mother kindly pointed out that it "wasn't for me," (as if she needed to overstate the obvious, we never could have afforded a pony that cute, let alone pay someone to decorate it with bows and flowers and deliver it to me).  It was one of the few times in my childhood that I was painfully envious.  So I may be living out a childhood dream here.

Second, Tucker loves ponies, and I've promised him that someday I'll get him one of his own.  When we were at HITS, one morning we made our way down to the ring and towered through a sea of cuteness crowded around the in-gate of the pony ring.  He felt like he was going to burst.  His neck arched, his eyes got huge, and he couldn't figure out where to look first.  "Look at that one!  No, look at that one!  OMG!  Look at THAT one!"  I could see his heart pounding in his chest.  He alternated between holding his breath in excitement and huffing and puffing with glee.  We eventually got past the pony ring (relunctantly) and he cast a forlorn look over his shoulder at them one more time... followed by the quietest, sqeakiest whinny he could muster.  Too cute for words. 

Then one day a fellow boarder brought a gorgeous little white pony, who had been at her house babysitting, over to Alicia's farm for a night.  Picture a sweet little pink nose, big welsh eyes, dished face, long bushy pony forelock, perfectly round belly, tiny little legs -- your basic cuteness overload.  He was on his way home (babysitting duties had concluded) and the drop-off was to occur at the horse show that day.  Well, seeing as how the pony was in the stall next to Tucker when I brought him in from turnout that morning, Tucker assumed it was a present, for him.  He took one look at that adorable pink nose peeking out over the top of the stall door and dragged me over there, and proceeded to shove his entire head and neck into the stall with the pony to say "HI!" before I could regain control. The pony recoiled in horror to the back of his stall. 

All in all, I see this as a win-win.  My niece begins her journey toward fame, fortune, and Olympic Gold, I get to live vicariously through her and make my childhood her childhood dreams come true, and Tucker finally gets his pet pony.  What could possibly go wrong?


  1. Love it!!

    I TOTALLY wish I could be an aunt (I'm an only child.... boooo). Perhaps I will have kids-- you know, just so I can have an excuse to get a pony!

  2. Nothing! It's a perfect plan. You get her the pony, advise your brother he should board pony with Tucker so he has an expert overseeing the pony, and Tucker (oops, I mean you, wait no, I mean your niece) gets a pony. Win-win.

    Pony will become instant barn mascot with a kazillion aunties to take care of him.

    Um. We have to wait 4 years and 3 months or so?

  3. You've got to watch those ponies - they suck you in with their extreme cuteness, and once they've got you hooked, you're their slave for life! So watch out!

  4. Hahah!!!!!!! LOVE IT! Those ponies are cute for reasons, b/c they are wicked! BUT..I LOVE a wicked pony! It teaches you to hang on! :)
    I love your plan and support it, and will also live thru that dream. I too, had to buy my own pony (Laz) at age 31. lol!

  5. Just for the record, as the father of that rising star, I have no problem with the purchase of said pony. Its the related costs - there's the rub. This is the gift that keeps on taking. Maybe we could save some money and buy her a Formula 1 race car instead.

    Anyway, the offer has now been made, in writing! Preserved for all eternity on the interwebs. No take backs.

  6. Nothing could possibly go wrong! A cute little pony for an adorable little girl. If I were you I'd get the first really cute pony I saw (for Tucker of course) and then I'd ground train him/her until your little niece is ready to ride. It's a win win situation, Tucker gets a little pet and you get to play with the pony and decorate him until he can be ridden.

  7. Lol, Marissa, I love that I have essentially the exact same plan for my niece! I've always dreamed of having a pony, the girl loves animals, perfect!

  8. How on earth did I miss this kid picture?? Good golly, Aunt Marissa, she's absolutely adorable! Little does she know, her auntie has plans for her...big plans...pony-sized plans...


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