What a couple of months, the lead up to the wedding was immense and took a lot of time away from the horses, I thank my lucky stars for Maria my groom who took all of the yard pressure off so I could concentrate on the wedding prep.
The big day arrived, the 16th of July 2016 and it was beyond magical. My most vivid memory is my fist steps into the church, I was so nervous but to see all our friends and family in the church to celebrate with us calmed me. Then i set eyes on my Ryan, my best friend in all the world, he looked so handsome.
The entire day was filed with such joy and emotion, I don't think I have ever been so happy.
The following day we set off for our mini-moon at PennyHill Park, on Monday the 18th at 7.30 on the dot my phone went off to tell me the foal had arrived!
More excitement! Princess Fiona had done it and all by herself! She had shown no signs at all that she was ready the night before.
I couldn't wait to see them both so we were packed, checked out and on the yard by 8.20!
When we arrived I expected to see my big black Colt but instead we had a little bundle of red/brown hair. Disappointed? Not for a second. She was exquisite, the most perfect little filly I had ever seen. So like her mum.
Her face markings were perfect like God himself had got his paintbrush out and drawn them on her pretty little face and four white socks, she was stunning.
She was beyond brave! Up and into everything. The vet arrived to give them both a good check over and she could not be more pleased, Fiona had done a brilliant job. What a clever girl.
So out to the field they went, unfortunately Toastie was no longer welcomed by Fiona so we had to put her alongside Orange who was thrilled to have some girl company!
Their first few days in the field were so precious, myself and Ryan spent hours watching them and trying to find a name. They were fascinating.
Fiona is a wonderful mother and her laid back approach to life had been passed onto our little foal making her very bold, I couldn't believe how brave she was, she had no fear at all and was ready to stand her ground if the need arouse.
I am beginning to think we might have an eventer on our hands!
Once we knew Fiona and foal were healthy and happy we booked our honeymoon. Of course it had to Barbados, where it all began 10 years ago! We booked two weeks flying first class and we couldn't wait. I've never been away for two weeks before, the horses always dictating only short holidays, but this was our honeymoon. I knew I would miss them but I wasn't aware at that point just how much.
We had a fantastic time away and knowing Maria had it all covered was such a relief. For the first time in years we manage to go away and switch off with not one pony drama! Amazing.
When we returned with help from our OTB Facebook page we named our little lady subject to registering Debonair's Honeymoon - stable name Luna.
She had grown so much and I felt a pang of guilt that I'd not been there to watch it first hand. The yard girls had been great sending us daily videos and pictures of everyone but I couldn't help feeling id missed out. The comforting thing was that Luna had not forgotten me and called to me the first time I went into the field. Fiona was very affectionate too so I guess we were all OK.
Since coming back I have felt what others tell me is completely normal, the "lull" after such a big event and for about two weeks I think my head was just in the clouds, I had no focus and bimbled around with things like getting the foal slip on, riding etc.
It's only been this last week that I actually feel like I'm back in the game, that I have my mojo back.
This has been helped by great friends and a new addition to my training schedule in the form of a rather handsome palomino called Marley owned by Emma Batcheler who is expecting her own little bundle of joy - in human form mind ☺️
I have been teaching Emma and Marley for a while now so I know the pair well and have great plans for them both, they have made great progress so it is really exciting for me to be able to take up the ride and keep us improving for when Emma is ready to get back in the saddle.
Mr Orange has been ticking over this last few months with me distracted but after a pretty brilliant lesson with Tor it feels like we are finally there, we have loads more training this next couple of weeks with some awesome trainers and then we will go back out and compete to see how much of a difference we have made since our last outing.
Little Luna will now have her slip on, pick up all four hooves and has stopped biting! Cheeky moo. She learns so easily, I can't wait to see how she blossoms over the next few years.
Fiona is looking very sound too so I will be bringing her back into work after weaning!