Thursday, December 29, 2016

2016 Year in Review

I had a really amazing 2015, and a slightly less awesome 2016. It wasn't bad per se, but it kind of has sucked ever since the election, culminating with the loss of one of my cats, Jasper. I've been really bummed out about that and decidedly feeling low. There has hardly been any sun in three weeks either, which isn't helping my mood at all. I'm grieving for losses like Carrie Fisher, Debbie Reynolds, and Richard Adams, who wrote my beloved favorite story Watership Down (Lendri is named after an animal in the book). But, I do hope that 2017 will be a really fantastic one like 2015 was. I have hope, anyway.


January started out strong. A continuing theme throughout the year is always not having enough time for blogging. I started seeing a new physiotherapist for my calf, and kept working to try and get my body functional in the saddle again. I readied myself to say goodbye to Darby, and planned out my turnout for O's driving season. 


We said goodbye to Darby at the beginning of the both. We also said goodbye to Zuul's nuts! B2 came over to practice navigating on the back of the Dartmoor, and I started lunging Lendri a little bit. I trailered Pax out for her first solo adventure and it went... sort of okay. I continued planning my turnout for O. Not too much else went on, besides riding and driving! 


I decided I was finally going to be able to try working equitation! I had been interested in it for years but had never had a horse to do it on. I went to my first practice and had a great time, and so did Dylan. Deathstorm season began, and the mares came into heat, starting Dylan back to his old fencewalking habit with a vengeance. I reminisced about Gogo's many fails. O scraped up her leg, which led to me scratching from our first show, but we had Sunrise Ridge to prep for so we kept going! Naturally, AGAIN, she scraped up her leg right before that show as well. Because it's always something! While I was coldhosing and doctoring that cut, I did more working equitation practice with Dylan, and worked with the garrocha. Zuul was sold, and went to his new home. 


Sunrise Ridge kicked off the month! We had a really crummy dressage test and not a great cones course either, and gossip and drama nearly caused me to scratch from the entire thing. I decided to put my big girl panties on, and we finished the marathon strong, ending up in 2nd place! I made tentative show schedules for the year, and called out a new chiropractor to see about addressing O's terrible dressage performance and get Dylan on the schedule as well. (Turned out, O's problem were simple and Dylan had even more of them than she did, but is better at hiding them!) We went to our next show, another Games Day, and as usual won everything. We wished Pax a happy first birthday, and I revealed plans to breed both O and P for 2017 foals. At the time, Pax was considered sold. That fell through, but P never took, so we still came out sum 0 there. P at almost 21 is now retired from breeding - I got my one, and that's all I'll get, and I'm good with that. April was a pretty good month.


I found another special tiny moole to bring home, and due to being completely wild and feral, named her Sriracha. (I LOVE my Srirachy). I had lots going on, namely working on WE stuff with Dylan, breeding stuff with the mares, taming Sriacha down, working on long lining Lendri, working O who was now solidly in the middle of show season. I spent way too much money at the vet, and never did get P pregnant. I played a lot with my tiny mooles. O and I had a not great time at the Romp (which I don't plan on ever going to again, not after two crappy showings!), and I talked about trying to keep life organized (still haven't been successful there). I talked even MOAR about mooles. O, B2, and myself all headed to Pine Hill which was EPIC for so many reasons - read Part IPart II, and Part III (and bonus Romp pictures). We finished 2nd, and turned right around and headed out the next weekend for the final show of the season in Oklahoma! 


We finished 4th at our final HDT of the season! We should have finished 2nd but SOMEBODY (cough cough me) messed up the timing heading into marathon and started 30 seconds late. We were so fast on marathon that it gave us about 30 second of time penalties for going too FAST. Part I, and Part II here - Stephanie of Hand Gallop joined us for the marathon too! I pulled the plug on breeding P. It got REALLY HOT really fast, and I shared some pictures of the 2015 show season. I put O and Dylan out together, and it was magic from the beginning. I rode, a lot, and fought my body hard in order to make it better.


I played around with one-handed work for WE, and did not suck too badly at it. Pax's sale fell through right after I gave up on breeding P, and I contemplated if it was meant to be. Everything came temorarily crashing down when my idiot neighbors set fireworks off over my house, and both Pax and Dylan were hurt in the chaos. Since I had no one to ride for a bit, and O was officially off show duty and onto mommy duty, I had little else to do except pour my efforts into my mooles. I schemed up plans for the babies. Dylan got collected again, my neighbor's pig kept coming to our house, and I kept doctoring Dylan's leg, which healed very well. 


Zoodle arrived in the beginning of August after much planning! Even though I didn't keep Zuul, I still wanted to work with more hybrids, and picked a really special one to continue on with. Dylan went back to work mid-month, and did incredibly well. We also fitted his saddle, which was the final piece we were missing. I played with the babies, and continued to work to get it all done. (Sometimes, it doesn't work.) I made plans for Dylan's 2017.


My mooles were already getting hairy in preparation for winter! I went over Dylan's tack. I added more sand to the mare pasture. I talked about what it's like working with zebra hybrids. The chiro came again, as she does every month now. I rode, and rode, and it was HOT. And showed pictures of baby Zoodle, which are all adorable.


Dylan and I went to our first clinic together! It was awesome. I talked about Gogo, who has now been gone for 5 years and thus gone away from my life longer than she was in it. I talked too about Dylan, and what an amazing creature he is. I took my first lessons with a new trainer (which I love), took a second clinic with Tarrin, and signed up for my first show! (Spoiler alert: Dylan was great, I made dumb mistakes). It was a very productive month for Dylan and I, even though I did less with the others because I was doing so much with him!


O was waddling by November. I went over goals with Pax, and had another lesson. The election happened, and I felt like a deflated balloon for weeks. Dylan and I went to our second show, along with regulars B2 and R as usual, and did great. I wrote less than I ever have in a month in November, which really dissapointed me.


I started out blogging very strongly, which I am happy with. I had no intention of bringing ANY more animals home, but Big Frank ended up with us anyway! (NO. MORE). I started out talking about family trees, and haven't finished the second part yet. I had more lessons, both with Louisa and with Tarrin. The dentist came for her yearly visit! There was then a big pause in blogging for the holidays while I was away in both Austin and then Michigan, and a cold front came blowing in. It went from 80 degrees to 15 degrees, then back to 80 degrees and now again 30 degrees tonight. (I have NO idea what the hell is going on with our weather).

And... there will be more to come!

The end of the year is always full of chaos for me, with much holiday hectic travel and not a lot of riding or working the critters. But this is also a time for planning, for rest, and for looking forward to the future - and I have hopes that 2017 will be special. Or at least.... not terrible? I'm definitely ready for 2016 to be over with though. I know I'm not the only one there.


  1. You had a whirlwind year! I hope 2017 is full of good adventures for you and your crew.

    Also, Watership Down is such a great book! Who knew a story about rabbits could be so good?

  2. Lots of exciting things in 2016 (besides the election...ugh). What a year :)

  3. Cheers lady! Love your blog and wishing you the best in 2017. Also cannot wait for the wittle babeh!!

  4. So many new faces this year!!

  5. When I need a moole fix - this is where I come. Plus - ZOODLE!! Best wishes for a happy, healthy 2017. :D

  6. I thought that Lendri's name seemed familiar! I read and loved Watership down. I agree that I'm hoping 2017 is less crazy and can't wait to keep reading how it goes for you.