Saturday, February 17, 2007

A Long Hiatus

My last post was in October 2006. I really had no idea it had been so long. Basically since that time, my training with Zoe has been sporadic. So many things ("life") get in the way. First, she was in another location, separated from Jimmy, and it was really difficult having the horses in 2 different locations. That put my whole rhythm out of whack. I finally got her back to AW later in October, and that was such a relief. It was even more a relief that she did not have the allergic reaction when she returned. I got a few weeks in of good riding, snuck in a lesson or two, but then my schedule went crazy, and I decided that Zoe's not really "in training" so I wouldn't worry about recording our rides. I guess that included not worrying about writing anything in my blog. That's too bad, because we had some historic moments this year. Since the holidays came around, I really got off my riding schedule, then we had a long cold snap in early December. However, after the cold snap, we had ridiculously warm weather for this area -- 60 degrees! That lasted a couple of weeks. It was fun to be able to ride outside in December, and we even got a long ride down the road with a group from the barn. That was a blast. I took Jimmy on that ride, and found that he may be getting older, but he still does have the oomph he used to. It was great to feel his energy.

The holidays were really memorable. We hosted Thanksgiving for the first time. We organized and had great fun with the "First Annual Sadorus 'Brined Turkey Trots' 4-Miler". I brought Jimmy and Zoe home for the first time. They got to go in the new stalls, and how exciting it was to see the horses in my barn! I can hardly wait to bring them home. I really should tell you about the ride around the section. J. rode Jimmy and I rode Zoe. It was a nice 40 degrees Thanksgiving morning. Zoe was a bit high, and when I got on her she felt like she was about to burst. I thought for a second that I did a great thing just by getting on her, and maybe I would be good to get off her and count this as a victory. But it was so much fun, that I stayed on and we rode in the side yard until she calmed down. She had been going through a stage of kicking out when we go into the canter, so I hadn't been cantering her as part of our regular workouts unless we just went into it easily and effortless without much forethought. It had been working, but I was still a bit worried about cantering that cold morning in my side yard. Still, we did, and we did great. I was very proud of her. After about 20 minutes of trotting and cantering at the house, I decided she felt like she could focus again and we started on our way around the section. The walking group had already started (S, father-in-law, JT, and the dogs). My mom had even shown up and went in the house with C and S to wait it out while we did our 4-miler. We started walking around the section, about 1.5 miles behind the walkers. Once we turned the corner, we started trotting. It felt wonderful. We trotted most of the way around, trying to catch up with the group on foot. We did get some cantering in, and how much fun! We finally did catch up and we finished the last half-mile together. We untacked the horses and went into the house where S had cooked up a big breakfast and had hot apple cider waiting. It felt so great to have friends and family around, having the sense of accomplishment and warm muscles from our ride, and having the horses on the property. This is what Thanksgiving is about to me.

We cooked our first turkey for the family, a brined turkey. We got the recipe from Good Eats. We brined the turkey overnight in a bucket. Everyone coming over brought a side dish. We were able to set up out tables in the dining room so we could all sit together for dinner! That was a first for my family in a very long time. It was a great feeling bringing together our families in our own home and combining our traditions -- sit-down dinner, family specialty dishes.

There is still so much to write about, but it is getting late and I need to take care of the horses still today. I'll have to come back to this later.