Cave Dwellings: The fine art of “Dressage”
Cave Dwellings

Buckhorn Creek, Lake O' The Pines, Jefferson, TX

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The fine art of “Dressage”

  NOT our usual casual Sunday last weekend..  You know….. doing laundry, mowing grass and generally lazing around the house…Here’s the scoop…Our nephew, Steve, is engaged to be married to a lovely woman named Bobbi Josephs.   And Bobbi owns “Our Farm”.  Our Farm is NOT your usual farm either…Bobbi trains horses and their riders in the art of Dressage.   The word dressage comes from the French word dresser, to train.  Dressage is also called “horse ballet”, and it certainly is beautiful to watch…Well, Sunday Steve’s sister (our niece)  and hubby (Leanne and Tom) called and asked if we wanted to go see a “riding clinic’ at Bobbi’s horse farm..DARN RIGHT WE DO!


Left is Bobbi riding Estrella, middle and right is Bobbi on Amber…Both horses are champions… Last weekend Bobbi had a “Riding Clinic” at her horse farm to train riders in dressage.  Bobbi also gives regular riding lessons and boards horses at the farm.  She has a big stable , an indoor arena,an outdoor arena and a huge pasture area.  In warm weather they train outside, in Winter they use the indoor arena.


Above is looking down one end of the barn. She has 14 horses there now..Middle is the indoor arena…and right are Bobbi, Estella the horse, and Steve, our nephew..Steve and Bobbi are getting married in Hawaii this November..We are so very happy for them both…They each have on child and are also both 57 years old.  It is obvious they are “made for each other”, and we are all very happy for them!!


On the left is Kate. Kate drove up from Springfield, IL to help teach for this weekend’s clinic.  Kate and Bobbi went to Germany for extensive training in dressage.  Bobbi has been training horses for 30 years. Notice the headsets on both.. Kate communicates to the riders via the headset on how they should move to make the horse behave in certain ways.  In the middle picture, is Bobbi, also wearing a headset. This way Bobbi and Kate interact when she rides Estrella (white horse) and Amber (dark horse).  Amber is a very engaging filly who has quite a few ribbons under her saddle, and is a National Champion… And then, on the right pic,  there is “moi”..harkening back to my days of watching too much Mr. Ed.  I actually think Amber can understand me..”OK, Wilber”..Be right back


The ribbons and awards are everywhere…On the right is a picture of Bobbi, riding Amber..U.S. National Champion Dressage…Such accolades are common around this stable…And, I might add, these stallions and fillies sure do get all dolled up for their riding appearances…


……………They get their toenails polished, they wear fancy hats…..and they get their hair braided!! Pretty snazzy!

I am loading a very short video if you want to see Amber and Bobbi do some practicing…..Sorry if it makes you nauseous, I am not a videographer!!

Amber and Bobbi ….strutting their “stuff”!


That Bull Mastiff’s name is Paddington…He is 9 years old…and that stable if FULL of cats!


Left picture…  just like I feel after pizza night..burp!………….This sign above says it all, there are 9 cats patroling that barn…Look at that cat food buffet above, would ya??spoil, spoil, spoil….Obviously, Mr. Fat Guy on the left, is the favorite..and the house cat.  Let’s talk OVER SERVED!!

I know this blog has gone on waaaaay too long, but we had such an interesting day that it’s hard to down size anything…Indulge me a few more pictures of these beautiful horses…


Above is Bobbi’s groomer, Marilyn.  She is braiding Beau’s bangs..Beau doesn’t like his band to touch his ears..I KID YOU NOT! ( I’m the same way, Beau.)…Marilyn is a rider too, and rode Beau for a lesson from Kate..Notice the stance on Beau in the middle picture…The key is to keep the horses’s head low…Magnificent animals, yes they are…OK, you talked me into it..ONE more collage…


There are a couple movies that have come out about the Lipizzaner horses who do this dressage.  One is called “Miracle of the White Stallions”.  It is the story of the evacuation of the Lipizzaner horses from the Spanish Riding School in Vienna during World War II.  The other is called  Warhorse, made by Steven Spielberg in 2011..

I hope you have found this somewhat entertaining…I know that I sure enjoyed being in the same space as these gorgeous horses..Oh, and I found out that they do have personalities..When Bobbi had Amber out of her stall and was getting her ready to ride, the horse in the next stall (Skippy) was kicking his stall door and whinnying for attention…Yup..they are jealous!  Steve gave me a carrot to give to Skippy, and I had a time getting it in his gigantic toothy mouth…those teeth were pretty BIG…I dropped the carrot on the floor about 5 times before I finally almost “low balled” it into his choppers…Beautiful, but dangerous if you are a total amateur, such as MOI!


MacGyver, moi, Bobbi and Amber, Leanne and Tom…THANKS BOBBI AND STEVE!!

                                                      “There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  ~Winston Churchill


  1. I've never been around horses so find things like this very interesting. Of course my weird sense of humor compares the Lipazzaners to the Budweiser team ;-) Hope you're going to that wedding in Hawaii!!!!

  2. I would have loved to have been there with you! You're a lucky duck. :)

  3. What a great story! They are so well trained... I can't even get my 7 year old pup to potty outside everytime!!! Hopeless.. they do have their own little personalities tho, I was fortunate to have an old mare when I was in high school, she was a sweetie, I did have to get her so she would come to me & managed to do that, or else it would have been trying to chase her down all over the fields :) not fun!!! Guess I was just younger and more persistent.

  4. I grew up with horses on the farm, but this is the real horsey set:)

  5. What a fantastic way to spend the day. Those horses are magnificent and watching them perform is so incredible. I can't even imagine the patience it takes to train them. My sister-in-law rescues horses and has about 7 or 8 on her farm in Virginia. She gave me some carrots to feed them with and I was like you. Scared to death of those big teeth. But they finally all got their carrot. And her barn has cats everywhere also.

  6. love love horses, used to beg my parents for one. saw the lipazaners perform decades ago here and the airs above the geound will take your breathe away.

  7. I'm not really a horse guy, but I did enjoy your post and all the great photos. When I read the title of your blog, I thought for a minute that you might be going all "Mitt and Ann Romney" on us as she's a big Dressage rider too - it takes moola for that.

    Sure is a nice setup at Bobbi's Farm.

  8. what a great home for all those horses! nice way to spend the day and take a ton of photos!!

  9. You need deep pockets, that's for sure. Friends of ours were going with the horsey crowd over the years until both of them got a bit too long in the tooth to continue. Both he and she competed in Dressage and Hunter class. I used to know all the moves, but unless you use it, you sure lose it.
    We saw the Lipizzaners at the Spanish Riding School when we lived in Vienna. Quite something.

  10. What a great post! I love horses they are sooo muscular! Thanks for sharing your experience!

  11. That's truly an art and a commitment. For a minute there, I was worried you'd traded in MacGyver for Paddington. Sounds like a fun day.

  12. Horses are such magnificent animals. And when they are trained so well the rider and the horse look like they are one. Such beautiful animals. We always had lots of cats in our barn too, where there is horse feed there is mice. I love Paddington, what a neat dog.