Posts Tagged With: oxer jump

Summer Camp Shenanigans

If you don’t already know, shenanigans can be defined as “silly or high-spirited behavior.” And that, friends, is what today was all about!

But let me back up and start at the beginning…

Yesterday our friend, Shelley, asked Mommy if we would be willing to do a jumping demonstration for her summer camp kids. Mommy said that the decision would ultimately be up to me, but of course I’m always happy to show off – especially jumping, and especially for a large audience full of amazing little kids who are learning to be equestrians! (Plus, jumping day always means marshmallows… And you know how much I love marshmallows!)

So today, Mommy and I got to have a great deal of “silly and high-spirited fun” while jumping over a big ol’ triple oxer, showing off for the summer camp kids and counselors!

Of course, we warmed up over smaller oxers first… But the real fun started when the oxer got up to 3 feet and 6 inches – because the spread (which just means the width of the jump) was 4 feet and 9 inches! 

3'6 oxer with a 4'9 spread

3’6 with a 4’9 spread? Come on, Mom… this is easy!

After jumping the oxer successfully at that height, Mommy asked our friend, Jan – who was also video taping us – to raise up the back pole a hole at a time until we were jumping 4 feet high with a 4-foot-9-inch spread! (Thanks, Jan!)

Jumping big oxers like that is a lot of fun… but do you know what makes it even more fun?

Having an audience to cheer for me when I clear the jump!

And do you know what might even be better than marshmallows as a reward for doing well?

Lots and lots of HUGS from my wonderful little friends!

I love getting hugs! They're the BEST!

I love getting hugs! They’re the BEST!

Of course, even though I do love hugs – and they might really be as good of a reward as marshmallows…. Mommy still gave me lots of marshmallows, too!

Mmmm... My favorite jumping day treat! Thanks, Mommy!

Mmmm… My favorite jumping day treat! Thanks, Mommy!

All in all, today was an awesome day. It might even be my favorite day in August – and the month has only just begun! I’m just saying that something super-duper-spectacular is going to have to happen in order to move up higher in the rankings than this wonderful, amazing day.

Thanks to all of my new friends who came out to support me and cheer for me during my jumping demonstration! Y’all made it a fun, silly and exciting day for me – and I hope it was the same for you!

My awesome friends who cheered me on during the jumping demonstration! Thanks, y’all!

Well, that’s about all I have to share for today… Stay cool in this heat, friends – and I’ll catch y’all later!

Categories: A Day in the Life of Icchy Star | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

A brief history of oxers

Okay, this post isn’t really going to be about the history of oxers. It’s actually going to be about my history with jumping oxers – just like I said in my post yesterday. But, since all of you history-buffs out there probably only clicked onto this blog to read about the history of the oxer, I will give you a brief overview.

Oxen are big, strong animals, and they need to have big, strong, double fences in between their paddocks to keep them from breaking through. Since an oxer is a “double jump,” whoever had the job of naming the jumps decided to name it after those ox-fences. (Was that brief enough?) And if any of you history-buffs out there have any more information about that, feel free to leave it in a comment at the bottom of this post!

So, like I said, this is a story about the first time I jumped over an oxer. I was already 4 years old and living at my second barn in New York. (That’s the barn where my friend Cooper lived; remind me to tell you the story of how I actually got to that barn! It’s another good one!) My Mommy had a job teaching lessons at another stable nearby, and at that stable she made a friend. Her friend also taught lessons, and he wanted to meet me. So he came to my new barn one day to watch me work, and because he saw how amazing I was, he really wanted to have a small role in my training. When my Mommy told him that we were going to jump an oxer for the first time, he decided to set up a one-stride line – a small vertical and then one stride to the oxer –  to help me figure out where to take off from. You see, when you jump an oxer, the take-off point is a little different than when you jump a vertical, because the oxer is wider than a normal jump. Anyway, this friend of my Mommy’s was really excited by how awesome I was, so he kept raising the oxer a little at a time… and, as it turned out, the first time I jumped an oxer was also the first time I ever jumped 3 feet high!

The first 3-foot-tall oxer I ever jumped!

The first 3-foot-tall oxer I ever jumped!

Now, you know my Mommy and her rules, right? So you can guess that she was a little worried about me jumping so high when I was only 4 years old, because I wasn’t completely full grown yet. Well, she gave me a tingly liniment bath afterward and – of course – wrapped my legs in pillow wraps, too. She was worried that I might be a little sore… but I wasn’t! Jumping that oxer was nothing to me!

We kept up with our schedule of only jumping once every couple weeks, and a couple months later, my Mommy decided that it would be okay for me to jump another 3-foot-tall oxer. But she wanted to make it a little more interesting, so she laid a tarp underneath it… and spread the oxer out until it was 4 feet wide! That oxer was actually a triple-oxer, with three jumps put together instead of two. It was so much fun, a “piece of cake!” But it was a huge accomplishment for me at that age.

A 3-foot-tall oxer with a 4-foot-wide spread!

A 3-foot-tall oxer with a 4-foot-wide spread!

Over the years, the oxers have just gotten bigger…

Jumping an oxer that is 3 feet and 6 inches high

Jumping an oxer that is 3 feet and 6 inches high

…and bigger…

Jumping a 4'6 oxer!

Jumping a 4’6 oxer!

…and the spreads just keep getting wider!

Yeah, I totally rock!

Yeah, I totally rock!

One day, when I’m a Grand Prix jumper, I’ll be jumping oxers that are 5 feet and 3 inches high with a 6 and a half foot spread! My Mommy said that I’m not quite ready for that yet… but she’s totally wrong, I know I could do it. I mean, I can do anything. Everybody knows that! After all, I am The Flight of Icarus, and I can fly as close to the sun as I want!

Well, I had a relaxing day off today. I grazed with my best friend, Leo, and we ran around a little in the paddock. I even had a chance to take a nap, although the sun didn’t come out at all today and it was pretty cold. I like napping in the sun much more than I like napping in the cold!

Taking a nap while Leo keeps watch.

Taking a nap while Leo keeps watch.

Anyway, I have some big dreams to dream tonight, so I’d better get to it. I’ll be dreaming about those 5’3″ Grand Prix oxers… What will you be dreaming about tonight? Whatever it is, I hope it comes true!

Goodnight, friends!

Categories: A Day in the Life of Icchy Star, Memories and Nostalgia | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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