Right when we put Epona in her stall, removed her tack and brushed her for a bit, a text from Peter popped up in our group chat. Sapphire had once again found a way to break free. And indeed when we reached the east wing, the young black stallion was trotting happily around the building. He never tried to run away, he just loved to show off his victory to the horses still stuck in their stalls and his owners who thought they finally found a lock strong enough to hold him back. Sapphire is our stables’ Indiana Jones. (We’re all hoping to change his barn name to Indy one day). Peter was going out of his way to capture him in a not so succeeded attempt to impress Céline, who was standing a few meters further with some treats in her hand. Dan looked at me, smiled and rolled his eyes. We all knew Peter was into her. Whenever we asked about it, his face turned bright red and the otherwise open book of a person became shut. While we were capturing the adventurer for the third time this week, Laura and Rachel were getting engaged at the other side of the building.
When Sophie finally reached their home, she immediately rushed herself to the bathroom, tossing her coat aside while grasping for the small pharmacy bag. She had to know. With shaky hands she locked the sturdy door. It was clear that the young woman with the fiery red locks was nervous. She started having suspicions around a week ago and what followed were sleepless nights filled with worry and worst case scenarios. She told no one, not even her sister Maya, except Katya, her close friend and colleague. The kind history teacher had advised her to simply get a test right after work and so she did. Sophie’s heart pounded through her chest while she paced around the room. Her eyes kept wandering towards the damned tiny white object on the corner of the counter, jumping up as the timer on her phone suddenly rang loudly. Color left her face when she saw the result. Positive. F*cking positive. The room started to spin, she had to sit down. Arthur had mentioned before how he didn’t want children yet, he’d said a couple of times how he wasn’t ready. SHE wasn’t ready! Her breath became short and sharp and her hands felt tingly, almost numb. Tears rolled from her blue eyes, who now looked bloodshot. Right when she felt like she was going to pass out, her phone rang. She did a pathetic attempt at splashing some water in her face, sat on the floor and picked up. It was Maya.
“OMG SOPH, it’s me, I’m calling from the stables! Big news! Guess what, Laura and Rachel just got engaged like literally right here. There’s a toast soon, they’ll send the details in the group chat, you’re coming too?”
“Sophie? Sophes? Are you alright?”
Phew, so glad I was finally able to post part 2. My computer crashed, my harddrive broke somehow and I thought I lost everything important, but hey it's fixed now and everyhting is back to normal yay
As he was the only one of last years foal crop who wasn't in the former two posts, I decided to do a really quick edit of him in between creating the horses of the raffle. This is Caspian, Indy's pasture pal, peer and stable neighbour. Unlike his buddy, Caspy (aka Casper) doesn't really like to go on adventures. The dark chestnut stallion has a rather calm personality. He's actually a little shy, but his heart can easily be won with a treat and a soft scratch behind his ear.
A few weeks had passed and the inevitable happend. Sophie had to confess her pregnancy to Arthur. To her big surprise the man's face went from confusion to ecstatic in seconds. His eyes widened as he smiled and pulled her in for a big hug. Ever since then the two of them had been more than exited to start a family.
The teams reaction was mixed, some got emotional, others where speechless, Céline was squeeling about babys and Chris was clearly faking it but still put on an awkward smile.
They decided she needed to take it a bit slower now. At the moment she worked as a maths teacher, an instructor for the young riders at the barn and on top of that she trained a couple of horses including her own mare Nayru. Her schedule was packed and Arthur -being overly worried- thought it might be better for her to not participate in the upcoming show season. It wasn’t an option anyway because she and her mare had something in common: her mare was expecting too! Sophies boyfriend had a thing for photography, he wasn’t very good at it, but he loved it. He got his camera out and took this shot of his two favorite ladies. After all, Nayru was the one who brought them togheter. When the mare was still young and in training, she got terribly ill. Arthur was the one who saved her, allowing her to become the strong horse that she is today. The thankful Sophie and the young vet fell for each other and started dating right after.
Esmeralda Oakley was adopted at the age of 5 by a loving French woman and her British husband who owned a beautiful villa in the Provence. Her mother, Hélène Beatrice was one of the closest friends of the Smit family. She had been a successful equestrian herself and was determined to get her new daughter to the top. Esmeralda learned how to ride on Blanche, her mother’s retired Camargue gelding, but year after year the old horse became too old and tired to carry the saddle. It was time that she got a “real” sports horse as her mother called it, a horse that would accompany her daughter to her first competitions. That is when she rang her old friends at Skydragon Stables. In less than a week they had travelled to Belgium and back to buy a horse, 2 days later she stood there: SASs Silhouette. Standing at the age of 10 , the grey warmblood mare already had 5 years of competitive eventing experience, but she still had more than 5 years on the field to go. In her mother’s eyes this was a great start, and indeed she was right. They started competing one year after, when the girl was 10. Tons of ribbons later, at the age of 16, her mare gave birth to a filly: SASs Felicity. It was at that age that she discovered her spiritual side. Somehow this helped her to create a deeper bond with the foal. While Silhouette was getting old and rusty, ready for retirement, her career with Felicity had only just begun. After a few years, they got well known.
“Esmeralda Oakley’s odd after competition ritual” “Oakley: The secret to a good bond with a horse lies within your soul” “Esmeralda’s way to the top” “The spiritual path towards success: Esmeralda Oakley” “Another trophy for Oakley E. and SASs Felicity” “Chakra’s, cocktails and cuddles” “Esmeralda Oakley: spiritual horse trainer?”
These are some of the many headlines hat appeared across horse magazines worldwide. Over the years, Esmeralda had developed a reputation due to her unusual methods and great success in the world of equine sports. Some said she was odd while others admired her and asked for guidance. The overload of attention wasn’t her thing, she needed more peace.
She came here, in the small country of Belgium, to our stables. We were all enchanted by her. She left her car and trailer by the gate and made her way across the long driveway on her strapped sandels. Her pastel pink hair hung over her shoulder in thick, wavy locks. She wore a frilly sundress with a matching vintage necklace and very chunky golden earrings. The woman used nothing but the swift movement of her hand to guide her mare who, to our big surprise, was in a far state of pregnancy. Her other hand was gently wrapped around a colorful drink in a tall glass, on which she tapped a soft tune with her index and middle finger. So they strolled, followed by two excited stable dogs, Nita and Bruce, until they reached the slightly baffled team that she would now become part of.
Not longer then 2 days after Esmeralde arrived, her mare Felicity gave birth to a strong and healthy colt. With his deep red coat, Foreinger (Ranger in short) might be one of the largest warmblood foals we've ever seen around here! He is only a week and a half old and already towers above the large poppies that bloom in the northern meadows were he spends his days bugging his mother.
He’s not the only foal we're expecting this year We named him after one of my favorite bands with the same name: Foreinger of course:)
(I couldn't decide wich background to use so I just added both)