Thursday, November 28, 2013


Not just today, but every day, for my heart-horse who still gives me her all, for the lessons she's taught me and for the ones she still has yet to teach me.

Monday, November 25, 2013

2013 ride season wrap-up

Considering this weekend is the last weekend for the 2013 AERC ride calendar, and I don't have plans to be anywhere, I can safely call it a wrap on the 2013 ride season for myself. And what a season! I ended up doing more endurance miles in one season than I had done to date, and almost as many LD miles.

Final tallies:

-- 8 rides (4 endurance, 4 LD)
-- 210 endurance miles
-- 115 LD miles
-- 4 different horses
-- 4 different rides I'd never been to before
-- first back-to-back 50s
-- 2 100s crewed
-- 2 rides volunteered at

I had a great time this year, and can't wait to see what the 2014 season brings!

Friday, November 15, 2013

the newest "herd" member

Meet Mimi's new "little sister":


She's an 8-week-old Decker Rat Terrier. She's also officially my first dog. Yes, I've grown up with the family dogs since I was two years old, but this is the first one that's mine that I picked out, bought, and am responsible for being her primary caregiver and turning her into a Good Dog. (No pressure.)

She's young, and she's a terrier, so that means she has two modes: Play Hard and Sleep Hard. But she's also very smart, and although she's dominant, she's trying very hard to be a people-pleaser and likes being with me.

For only being here less than 48 hours, she's settling in well. Our main deal right now is potty-training and crate training, with a side of "I don't like this, get it off of me" collar introduction.

I eventually intend for her to, at the very least, become a ridecamp dog. Part of the reason I chose a Decker was for their size -- small enough to be portable, but very tough for their size and the endurance to go all day long. If I can find a safe place to do so, I would like to eventually start taking her on some short rides, but that will be a ways off before I even have to think about that.

The breeder she came from is also an endurance rider (Global Endurance), so she's already been exposed to horses, and she's well-socialized with people and other dogs. So it's just on me to continue that training, which we will as soon as she has her second round of shots at the end of the month.

Naturally, she has her own blog: Squirrel Patrol. But I'm sure some photos of her will crop up on ehre from time to time. :)

Friday, November 1, 2013

sunshine award

Thanks to Gail at The Journey to 100 Miles for the nomination! I'm normally soooo bad about following through on these, but I'll give it a shot. :)

The Sunshine Award is for people who "positively and creatively inspire others in the blogosphere." The nominee must do the following: thank the person who nominated her, nominate 10 bloggers of her own (I think my entire blogroll has been nominated at this point), answer the 10 questions given to her, and post them and the Sunshine Award button to their blog.

My answers to the questions:

1. Mares or geldings?
Mares. Maybe it's because it's what I've started with, but I've always gravitated towards mares. Or maybe I'm just a masochist and love a challenge. Once you've got a relationship with a good one, they'll go to the ends of the earth for you. I've met just as many moody, attitudinal, cranky geldings as I have mares.

2. English or western? 
English. I learned to ride huntseat, and Western has always felt disconnected and distant to me. I get a lot of security out of the feel and style of an English saddle. Lately, I've been gravitating towards more of a centered dressage position than classical huntseat for endurance, but the vast majority of the saddles I've owned have been English-style.

3. Do you prefer younger or older horses?
My favorite is a semi-blank slate that someone has started (30-60 days under saddle) but is wide-open for me to fine-tune and finish, then reap the benefits when they're older and trained exactly how I want. Not a fan of older horses that are set in their ways that vary drastically from what I like to see or how I like to ride.

4. Have you trained a horse from ground zero?
Not yet.

5. Do you prefer groundwork or riding?
Riding, hands (and hooves) down. I recognize groundwork is the necessary basis for all good riding time, but I rarely do groundwork for "fun."

6. Do you board your horse or keep him at home?
I've boarded Mimi since I've owned her. It's been a long-time dream of mine to one day have my pony in my own backyard.

7. Do you do all natural things or just commercial stuff? 
I don't box myself in to any one particular category. I use the right product for the job. For instance, good luck getting anything natural to knock out our summer mosquitoes here. If a natural option works for something, great. But if I'm spending my money, it's going to be on whatever works.

8. All tacked up or bareback? 
 The last few times I've ridden bareback, I've either fallen off or nearly fallen off. You don't ride bareback on a 55-gallon drum with no mane, no withers, and a low headset. Maybe more when I was a kid, but my Velcro-butt abilities are limited to being in an actual saddle.

9. Equestrian role model?
Julie Suhr. Mark Rashid. Sally Swift. Linda Tellington-Jones.

10. What's my one, main goal for my equestrian journey?
On the specifically definable goal level? Finish Tevis. On a more cerebral level, to, at the end of it all, be able to say I done right by my horse.