I used to do some year-end blog posts every year, until last year… when things really sucked and I just didn’t have it in me. But this year I’m reviving the tradition, starting with monthly highlights from 2016. I didn’t really blog that much this year, so I’m doing blocks of three months at a time. You’re welcome!
January, February, and March
The year actually started off pretty bleak with the death of a great friend, Suzanne. Despite the heartache, something good came out of the darkness in that I began my lease on Moiya (one of Suzanne’s horses) that month. Miles was being a jerkface, so he’d been put on probation with the working student. But some good weather made riding a little bit easier, and in the second month of the year, things started to look up with some good confidence-building rides. And then in March, Miles was a dickwad again so we experimented with bits. Since riding was kind of sucking at the time, I focused a lot on decorating the house.
April, May, and June
The beginning of spring was full of ups and downs… which is pretty much par for the course for all of 2016. I had some good rides on Miles, some great rides on Moiya, and then a lack of motivation. However, the best part of April was visiting my grandmother in New York, and meeting Carly and Bobby! May… sort of sucked, riding wise. Show season was right around the corner, and things weren’t exactly going great with Miles. I tried to rev myself up by writing down a list of my skills and putting together a plan, but really I was just upset. The month ended in typical roller coaster fashion: Miles bucked me off in our last lesson before the first horse show and I had decided I was pretty much done. But then the horse show went amazing, and I accomplished all of my goals! June saw an increase in my riding, including doing more trail riding AND I got to meet Genny from A Gift Horse!! We also attended our second show at a brand new facility, and despite some rough patches, overall it was a great learning experience.
July, August, and September
In July we went to two horse shows, the first being the New Vocations Charity Show (Day 1 and Day 2). This show was one of the big turning points of my season, as Miles and I showed a BUNCH and won some great ribbons. It reminded me why I chose this horse and proved to me that we could get our partnership back. The second show of the month things really started to click for us — I schooled my own horse, and we worked on going faster to get the correct number of strides. Of course this wouldn’t be 2016 without some rough times: my Trainer lost her husband and my BFF had to retire her show horse.
At the show in August, it was like I was a different rider: I had confidence, I knew what I wanted, and I went after it with gusto. It represented a complete and total mental shift from the winter. At the September horse show (which was back to back weekends with the August show), things were a bit hectic. No one showed on Sunday so that we could attend our barnmate’s wedding… so instead we showed on Friday and Saturday… went meant stepping up into the “big ring.” On Saturday, we placed 5th of 19 in the Intermediate Adult Hunters, with our best trip to date. And in that moment I completely fell in love with my horse all over again! But it wouldn’t be 2016 without something… at the end of the month, I lost my Grandmother.
October, November, and December
The show season ended on a high note, with a first place over fences against some professionals and again, a new best trip ever! Miles earned himself some time off, and we went on a lot of trail rides… which Miles is shockingly excellent at! Also in October my husband and I went on vacation to Georgia, and met Beka of The Owls Approve <3 We also welcomed a new family member: Kona the Labradoodle! In November, I got pnuemonia, hosted Thanksgiving and signed up for my very first clinic. December saw a few year-end award announcements (more on that later…), as well as the Scott DeHelian clinic.