A change is coming soon for Tiamo and me because we are moving to a new barn! I have been at a dressage barn for awhile now, and it feels pretty cramped. My dad and I built a few of our stadium jumps and two cross country jumps, but it is hard to find a good place to jump. I also miss having more than a couple of pastures to hack out around. The biggest one is Tiamo's pasture which is around 4-5 acres. The footing is pretty boggy though.
Just the other day I noticed a barn flyer at the tack shop which looked very nice. We ended up going to look at it twice, and I really love it! It is a private barn on 35 acres with a great little barn and lighted outdoor arena. It's got a well maintained stadium course with some cute fillers like painted boxes and big flower fillers, and it has some open room at both ends that I could set up a small dressage ring in. The pastures are beautiful, and the barn management is very flexible about turnout hours, feed, supplements, blanketing, etc. The barn owner and barn manager both live on property. Also, they keep the barn SO clean. It feels as clean as the hospital barn. It seems/smells practically sterilized in there. Most importantly, the horses seem extremely well cared for. I'm excited about this change, and I think the ability to hack out on all kinds of different terrain will be beneficial for both of us. The downside of this place is that there is no trainer. However, this can also be seen as a good thing. The emphasis is on the care of the horses, and atmosphere of this barn is so calm and relaxing. My plan right now is to trailer out to another FEI level dressage trainer in the area once a week. There is also a possibility that she could come to me, but I'm not sure yet. When the time comes to jump, I have a 'A' hunter/jumper barn down the street as well as a Pony Club instructor I know that travels to teach. I think this set up could really work out well in the long run. I can continue to travel to Bill Hoos' (my event trainer, 3 hours away) and keep up with the "homework" he gives me at home with the dressage, hunter/jumper, and Pony Club resources I have here.