Last year we had around 8 inches of snow outside already...as of now I just got done riding cross country at Carriage House Farm with Lainey Ashker! Heck - I'd take this any year over having snow on the ground already!
Hmm anyway so this blog clearly was started a month ago and left unfinished only to be started again on Christmas Eve while I sit on the couch at my mom's by the fire place recalling many memories from the year. Starting where we left off...
So yes, I rode in the Lainey Ashker clinic on November 13th. To sum it up it was awesome. Lucy of course, was a star, she knows it. Everything is about her and everything is over dramatic...the photos say enough about her personality!
Of course, as we seem to do best, we had to have a Liz Lund Eventing Party. Thanks to the host - The Shirley Family, for allowing us to have our party at their lovely home. The night was filled with over-eating, sharing some libations, gift exchange, hand stand contests and lots of chatter.
So far winter, as stated above, has been very mild...well pretty much non-existent. No snow and it is Christmas Eve....I mean what has this world come to! Well anyway it has made for some happier feet...well except on those few real cold days we had, the feet did NOT appreciate that too much. One of these years my feet will be the cause of me heading south for the winter...I'll blame it on the toes. So you will need to decide? Are you coming with me?
Lessons have been going well. There has been a very consistent schedule now that kids are in school and we have no shows or events on the weekends to attend. We had our first lessons with Alison Sader Larson at our new farm and are looking forward to having her in occasionally for tune ups. I am hoping to get some weekend group jumping lessons started - aiming for our first date to be January 7th. These groups will consist of gridwork and gymnastics followed by a ground session, learning about either braiding, wrapping, longing, clipping, or any other topic that is suggested!
Although the weather hasn't been horrible, there hasn't been any recent trail riding. I do have to say we have gotten quite used to our big, beautiful, well lit, well insulated, and well heated arena. We love it. We LOVE our new farm and of course the owner Tracy and all of her staff. On our fall trail rides the kids learned many different things from riding in groups, to crossing roads, riding on other properties, what to do in the case of....getting kicked, getting run off with, falling off, etc. Yes, yes, we do have fun!
Both the girls are fat, hairy and happy. Enjoying light work over the Holidays, well really light work since the end of the season, but soon to go back to some regular rides and tune ups so we can start to focus and plan for 2012, which is really right around the corner! The kids all seem happy, although we do miss the few that were not able to join us at EF. Savannah found a great new home for her previous horse, Curb Appeal, better known as Grady around the barn. She is currently on the hunt for a new partner.
Last but not least...as we head into the New Year and grow older...we must accept and welcome the challenges and adventures ahead of us. Huge congratulations to Maria, my one and only right hand (wo)man for her early acceptance to Standford. She will be off to sunny California next fall in pursuit of new knowledge and the college experience.
So next year I will be on the search of somehow finding someone who can fill Maria's very, very large shoes. Job requirements: groom, braid, drive rig, drive horses to and from clinics/lessons/shows/vet when needed upon no notice, teach, train, take order, the ability to say yes no matter what, take amazing photos and then at the end of the year collaborate them into a book, draw/paint/doodle the photos, listen, give advice, talk, care, have the ability to spell check, grammar check and provide input when writing papers, articles, letters or really anything...Ok anyway I'll stop before I realize to severity of the problem...maybe a few people would like to take on a few different areas?? Yes this is my way of saying Maria has been my lifesaver since day 1, before I had even known it. Even though I thought she was a little strange as she would arrive to her lessons, helmet already strapped to her head as she is pulling in the driveway, that was just a little insight as to how motivated and prepared this girl was to take on the world and ready to learn. She will go far in life and I hope to continue to be a large part of it.
Ahhh so yes as times change, so do we and we must learn to grow and adapt. We are all surprisingly stronger than we think, well I'd like to believe I am at least, and as we are presented with life's challenges it is all about how you react, how each little event shapes the rest of our lives. Just like this list of the timeline of top selling Christmas gifts (http://shopping.yahoo.com/articles/yshoppingarticles/769/a-timeline-of-the-top-selling-christmas-gifts-ever/) well we continue to change and each item or event that is new in our lives creates a list. Regrets and mistakes are just memories made.
Thank you everyone for being here, supporting me and the team. I am so looking forward to 2012 and well, green grass and the sun producing a little more heat...Have a GREAT Christmas or whichever Holiday you chose to celebrate. We all have so much to be thankful for - goodnight!