So, a lot has happened since we have chatted last. But maybe, at the same time not so much has changed.
Just to catch you up on the highlights, TK and I bought our first house in October of 2013.
Then, we got married in April of 2014.
Granite made his first appearance in the show ring in September of 2014, and managed to leave the show grounds with a myriad of swag, but most importantly, his first blue.
TK and I adopted "Alfie" the Shelter pup in November of 2014. We haven't had a full or restful night's sleep since, but we love the little jerk.
Any guesses on his breed? After considering many options, my money is on Beagle/Chihuahua. You should see him when we fold those ears over. He also howls and his nose hits the ground the minute he goes out. He hates cats, but I don't think that's indicative of his breed, just a fun fact. 10lb of terror.
TK got accepted to graduate school this spring. He is going to be a Spartan like me this fall! A family of Spartans! I'm so proud. He wants to be a principal one day.
Other than that.... shockingly, life seems pretty normal. We've been a the lovely Howard Farm since July of 2011. We adore our barn owners and in the past year, we've actually acquired some more boarders. So, I'm getting used to sharing the barn and having some new horse friends.
The neatest news of late is that I may have finally found a riding coach that may work out for me. A friend of mine from high school (5 hours away on the coast), with whom I also went to college, has been raving about her trainer for YEARS. Finally, after meeting up with her at a couple of Alumni events, she got to me. She convinced me to go ride her gorgeous, made hunter. He is similar to Granite in size and stature, but he is pretty much finished. Which, is a huge confidence boost for someone who has been riding a "green" horse for 5 years now!
On my recommendation, a coworker of mine started taking lessons with my college friend's trainer. She LOVED him! So, last Friday, she convinced me to have a group lesson with her. And... it was one of the most fun lessons I've ever had. Granted, I was on the lovely made horse, but the trainer gave me constructive feedback while making me feel like I DO KNOW WHAT I'M DOING...mostly. I haven't had a lesson that wasn't disheartening in quite some time. It is just hard to separate being a 1/2 way decent rider and being a pretty crappy horse trainer. I've been spending years trying to work through training Granite and it's hard and I'm not good at it. But, apparently I still do ride trained horses pretty well. That is somehow inspiring to me... although it doesn't sound it.
So, what's next? This coach trains out of a barn about an hour from Granite's. So, I think I'm going to try to take some lessons with him and maybe grab a few with Granite from a different trainer before I haul Granite out to his place (or pay him a mint to drive out to me). I'll work out the details as I go along, but all I know is I'm inspired and excited and I think I'm ready to make horses a priority for a couple of years while TK is in grad school and we are still childless.