Monday, October 26, 2009

Holy Cow, it's almost November!

Time flies by...Fall is officially here this morning, as evidenced by the ridiculous rain, urban flooding, and the closure of the road I usually take to school due to a fallen tree.

Dylan is managing...we're working on how to manage a cold back - probably both his and mine.  Now that he is learning self-carriage, it seems I am having to re-tool our warm-ups.  It's really now about warming up muscles before we go to work, instead of a conversation about all the things we could do INSTEAD of work.

Little Bit Redmond is closing down the boarding aspect of the business in preparation for permitting & construction of the "new" Little Bit.  The public announcement of the capital campaign was on the 17th - I rode Little Bit horse Raphaelo (Raffi) at the event and it went really well.  He's a beautiful big grey german warmblood, donated by the Rattner family (Devonwood Equestrian Center) - I had so much fun riding him.  Dylan will be able to stay at Little Bit Redmond, but I am exploring other options for us as well.

Last week Roxanne Christenson hosted Conrad Schumacher at Trilogy Farms in Monroe, and invited me to audit.  I really enjoy watching him teach, he has such a keen understanding of what the horse needs, and how the rider can make it happen.  After the rides, she and her clients had organized a wine & cheese reception, where she put me on the spot and asked me to talk about Para Equestrian, WEG, and what I'm up to.  !!!!.  I was mortified, but spit something out.  Conrad then spoke about his experience with Para Equestrian, and how much sheer will disabled riders have.  I couldn't agree more!  

This week I've been invited to clinic with Kathleen Raine.  I rode with Kathleen last year, shortly after I had gotten Dylan.  She had also worked with Dylan when Leigh Cochrain (Bear Creek Farm) was working with him.  She understands him and his quirks really well, and was not at all phased by working with me (and my quirks!).  Hopefully  I can shuffle my schedule to make this work!

In November we have the USEF sponsored clinic with our team coaches, Missy Ransehousen and Sharon Schneidmann.  USEF is providing transportation costs for the riders who have their FEI certificates of capability to come to the clinic, so I am hoping to get the chance to see some of my teammates!!   Dylan conveniently threw a shoe during the last clinic, so I am excited that the coaches will get a chance to see how he's coming along.

Wow...I guess I have been busy! :-)

Lastly, still looking for sponsorships & help fundraising.  I'd much rather be riding than fundraising....but it's become very apparent that in order to keep this adventure alive, I will have to do both :)  If you have ideas, as always, please feel free to contact me.

Until next time...

Monday, October 5, 2009

Fall is here -

It always seems like the beginning of Autumn feels more like the start of a new year.  Show season wraps up with Region Championships, kids go back to school, and generally everyone starts changing routines.

There has been a lot of change in this corner of the world, for certain!

My very close friend, who has also groomed for me at all my major competitions, has made a major life change, and is moving across the country to be closer to her boyfriend.  I am so excited for her, but in a very selfish way, am wondering who is going to help keep my nose clean (so to speak)!!  Not to mention who am I going to make starbucks or thai food runs with!!  

On top of that, my teammate who I have trained and competed with for the past 4 years also decided it was time for change.  She thought long and hard about the decision, and in the end, packed her things and also moved cross-country, for a chance at a fresh start.  

So...our longtime "team" - two riders, a groom, and a coach, is now down to a duo...and my coach is currently recuperating from a very significant surgery.   I admit I would like her back in action as soon as possible...but in my heart I know that she needs much more time to rest & recover than either of us probably want to think about!!

However, I forge ahead!!  I am more or less in charge of Dylan's training.  He is going well, but I am lacking a bit of confidence at this stage in the game.  When we are having a good ride, I feel like I should try and introduce something new, but am not that sure of "what comes next". When we are having a less-good ride, I start questioning myself, and wondering if I have taken him astray in some way.  I suppose these are things every rider goes through.

On the upside, FarmVet and I are on our way!  I received great feedback from the press release they put out, and my college (Sweet Briar) turned around and posted a story about me and my quest for WEG.   Dappled Grey has also continued their support.  I continue to try to keep the momentum going!! looks like my lesson this week is to embrace change, have patience, stay confident and keep on keepin' on!!