Thursday, April 29, 2010

Derby Day 2010 - Contender Lineup!

The excitement is mounting!

So are all the riders!

Saturday is going to be a very exciting day at TMF. It's our first annual Thunder Moon Farm Derby Day, in which a small group of my riding students will be participating in games and races that don't just test speed, but also precision and accuracy. Throw a little bit of luck and a bunch of dollar bills, some celebratory wine and food, and you've got a darn good time, folks. Even better, the lessons and competition here will be over just in time for the Run for the Roses! (My pick? Conveyance.)

Anyway, I have a rundown of the competitors for Saturday's Derby Day, just in case you wanted to throw some money down on one of TMF's fierce riders.

1. The Dark Horse: Alan
Alan is a newcomer to riding, but men have a penchant for picking up on all things athletic a bit faster in women - this is true with riding too. Ask Matt, who was posting like a champ during his first lesson. Alan works in Bristol CT, the home of ESPN - he's been found lurking around ESPN grounds, hunting down footage of the Triple Crown to study technique.

2. The Surprise: Arliss
Arliss last had a lesson when I was in diapers (which happens to be 1981), and after just one lesson with Siggy and I two weeks ago, she's ready to show the field how easy it is to come back after a horsey hiatus.

3. The Convincer: Aislinn
After chattering away with Topaz for her entire lesson last time, Aislinn is quite the animal whisperer. I've no doubt she's been on the phone and sending emails to Topaz, forming a strategy for their ascent to TMF history.

4. The Wild Woman: Kim
Kim is convinced the faster, the better. She's one with a game face and with stirrups or not, she's not taking any prisoners. She has a leg up with her Long Island friend Lynn, also a horseperson who an "in" with Jim Gaffney, who happened to be Secretariat's exercise rider. Lynn's been feeding her tips all week, I'm sure.

5. The Unknown: Kathy
Well, she really is. She is a friend of Kim's who hasn't been to TMF yet, but is joining in on the fun and spirit of the day. Rumor has it she's got some riding skills under her belt, but can she top the Convincer and the Dark Horse? Either way, she gets points for willingly jumping in headfirst on Derby Day!

6: The Whirling Dervish: Madeleine
Our youngest competitor, who has just reached 7 years of age, brings another year of experience and a belly full of birthday cake to the playing field. Also in cahoots with Topaz, despite her young age, I predict a photo finish for this little lady. Don't mistake her quiet demeanor for being shy: she's just plotting her fellow competitor's downfall.

7. The Bombshell: Cynthia
Being blonde has its bonuses, and one of them is charming Siggy into doing her bidding. Cynthia brings extra time spent with her mount, her own brand new helmet and roper boots to scare the rest of the field. Cyn also has a knack for making the Official Judge (moi) double over in stitches and is no doubt planning to use this tactic to distract the Judge.

So, there you have it. Who will take home the first TMF title? Tune in after Saturday to find out!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Secretariat...Living with a Legacy

I just saw a trailer for a movie about one of the most famous horses in history....Secretariat.

The video above isn't the official trailer, but if you'd like to see it, click HERE and it'll take you to the real trailer for the film, which Diane Lane and John Malkovich are starring in.

I am the first to admit that I have mixed feelings about Thoroughbred racing. I don't like how young they race these horses - at the age of 2, a horse's bones aren't even close to being ready. A typical Thoroughbred's bones aren't fully ossified until 7 or 8 years of age, thus leading to more breaks and fractures under the stress of the track. I also don't like some of the conditions the horses are kept in, but I also don't think all tracks are like the ones I'm familiar with.

However, when I saw the trailer for the film, I couldn't help but feel my heart begin to race and my eyes welled up with tears. But why? Why am I so affected by a horse, who won the Triple Crown before I was even born?
Because he's the great-great grandfather of Zeus, that's why. I have the legacy of an incredible legend, hanging out in my backyard. And although his racing career wasn't stupendous, he's got such promise, and clearly carries Secretariat's confidence, even at such a young age.

Zeus also has the 1977 Triple Crown winner in his blood....Seattle Slew is his great-grandfather.

Incredibly, there has never been a Triple Crown winner in my lifetime. The last was Affirmed, in 1978. Perhaps that will change with the winner of the Derby this weekend. I cannot help but be excited about having such an incredible living, breathing piece of history right in my field, that I have the honor of riding and working with.

Will he ever win the Triple Crown, like his grandsires? No. Has he changed my life? Yes.

The fact that he comes from such an outstanding heritage is just a bonus.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Greek Gurt.

Ok, I'll admit it.

I like yogurt.

I sometimes have it by itself, but I love nothing more than to slice up some fresh fruit (hopefully some strawberries and blueberries from my own garden soon!) and toss it in, or to throw in some Grape Nuts to give it some oomph.

For a long time now, I've been a Light N' Fit kinda girl.
It comes in lots of flavors, is easy to toss in your bag on the run, and doesn't taste awful.

But not long after, I'm hungry again. And when I'm running around cleaning stalls/ teaching lessons/ riding horses/ puppy sitting the three little loves that Pete and Anissa own, it's rather inconvenient to run into the house and shovel Cheese Nips, chocolate chip cookies, whipped cream, more cookies, and chocolate cake in my face.

Not to mention unhealthy. But that's neither here nor there.

The other day, Matt happened upon a segment on the Today Show (that I watch religiously until he sneaks in to switch it to Sportscenter when I am feeding the horses) about foods you may be surprised about, that are better for you than you thought.

For instance, turkey bacon has way more salt than regular bacon, and some other bad stuff. Mom and Dad, you were right. I'm bowing my head in shame.

(They made fun of me endlessly when I said I switched us to turkey bacon because it's "healthier.")

The guy on the show told Matt that nonfat yogurts should be tossed out the window, with their fake sugars, high sodium content and other unidentifiable objects hidden in there. He decreed that Greek yogurt is the way to go. So Matt burst into the office, where I was, and boasted, "Did you know the yogurt you've been eating is crap?!"

"And let's get some real bacon this weekend, for Pete's sake! The man on the Today show said it's ok, what are we waiting for?!"

Ok, he didn't say "for Pete's sake." He said something else, but it's not blog friendly. The man was a sailor in a former life.

At the grocery store this weekend, we spotted this yogurt next to my Light N' Fit selections:
A Nonfat Greek yogurt - same ounces as my normal 'gurt, and as predicted, less sodium. I went to just toss one in the cart, but Matt stopped me to check out the nutrition label - one of the many reasons I married that guy. I blindly toss things in the grocery cart all the time. Like the delicious gelato from Italy that ended up in our freezer. How did that get in there? I haven't the foggiest. Mmmmmm.

Today was the big test. I sliced up some strawberries, opened up the (vanilla) Greek yogurt, and off we went.

Not bad. Creamier, almost a custardy consistency, and it was definitely vanilla.

But the real surprise came at about 3 PM, when I realized I was just then getting hungry for lunch.

I ran back to the Greek yogurt container in the kitchen to check and see if there was baklava and feta and ten gyros hidden in there. What is in there?


The mystery is solved. And I am a convert. Too bad the Greeks charge twice the price as the Dannon people. But, if you account for the junk I won't be inhaling between breakfast and lunch, the 99 cent price tag doesn't seem so painful.

It's Greek to me - and it's delish!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Bling and Dogs blog isn't all about horses, is it?

Allow me to change the vibe a little bit!

Oh look, I'm rhyming, and all on my first cup of coffee.

Saturday night I had a great Girls Night Out with my friend Anissa, who invited me over for a jewelry show! I was the jewelry lady, so it was a great chance for me to meet some people, see some old friends, and have the most incredible pomegranate martini I've ever had. Seriously.

Oh, and Anissa is also a baker extraordinaire, and she made these "Cookie" cupcakes (because it is Cookie Lee Jewelry, after all!), and they pretty much sent me to Heaven and back. She loves to bake, so I asked if she'd do some cupcakes for my 30th birthday in August. She said yes! I'm already salivating.
Anyway, it was a smaller show, but it was a blast and I walked away with quite the large amount of money - these ladies loved the jewelry! Mother's Day was a popular reason for shopping, so I predict there will be some really happy moms out there in 2 weeks.
Which reminds me: Mother's Day is 2 weeks away - so if you want something special for your Mom, let me know - I can help!

As you can see, everyone was really happy with their bling choices!
And the martinis. Me, too. Delish!

Anissa and her fiance Pete also had a special delivery the evening before.

This little lovebug was left at a veterinary hospital by her owner a few states away - the owner requested she be put down because she had an intestinal blockage and he could "just breed another one."


So, Anissa heard about her and met a veterinary assistant in PA to take the pup, a few days after she'd had successful surgery to remove the blockage.

The other pups in the house have taken her under their wings (paws?) and are showing her the ropes.
Jewelry is exhausting!

She doesn't have a name yet though! Would anyone like to contribute a name for Anissa and Pete to consider?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Bumble Bee

We have a new lawn mower/ tractor.

Well, we never had an old one, so it's not really new, but it is new....

Ok, I'm confusing myself.

Does anyone remember Bumble Bee from Transformers?

Um, yeah. That's our new lawn mower. The thing can probably fire grass assault missiles and has a function to transform itself into a submarine.

The best part was, Matt had to test it out when it got here, as all men do with new toys.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present....Matt mowing.

This is more exciting (and funnier) than watching grass grow. Promise. (Video!)

You can actually hear me cackling, guffawing and howling behind the camera, and it's shaking because I cannot stop laughing.

Yes, Matt is mowing the driveway.

He also did some impressive maneuvers in getting Bumble Bee to do doughnuts....but my personal favorite is the moonwalk move he does at about 55 seconds.

We are officially residents of the Funny Farm. But at least we have Bumble Bee for mowing and improv dance contests in the driveway!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Birthday Business

I'm going to let you in on a little secret.

I'm turning 30 this year. In August.

For whatever reason, my birthday is giving me lots to think about this year. I think we've come a long way, and I'm really happy where we are now.

But with my birthday a mere 115 days away (yes, I checked!), there's quite a bit left to do before then.

Well, not really. But while I'm mucking, my mind wanders and I tend to daydream a bit.

What have I been daydreaming about? What the best gifts ever would be for my birthday!

(Note: I fully don't expect to have all of these items, and of course I'm not requesting them as gifts. This is just my version of a Neiman Marcus catalog and unlimited funds.)

So, indulge me while I list out my dream presents.

1. A Nissan Xterra, or other SUV with a towing package that can pull a 2 horse trailer. Used is a-ok! I like the Xterras because they seem to last longer, although let's face it, if it has 4 wheels and can pull a trailer, I'm all over it.
2. A horse trailer - of course, to go with the truck! Also can be used. I like Kingstons, but will take any make as long as it's a genuine horse trailer:

And not a stock trailer:
(See the openings in the stock trailer? Yeah, not a fan of trailering in cold months with that.)

I have a goal to take Zeus to some clinics and schooling shows later this year. Hopefully, I can either hitch a ride with someone or have my own rig so I can get him out and about!

3. A Stubben Roxane Saddle:
Isn't she pretty? I have a Stubben Kerry saddle which I love, have used it for 15 years, but I'd like to be able to use that just for my students, and have this new piece of art as my saddle. Sigh. At a mere $2300, it would be a great saddle for the next 20+ years of riding.

4. A Standard Schnauzer, in salt-and-pepper....male.
It's so sad that we've already got a name for the dog, and don't have....the dog. We have to be careful with Matt's allergies, so we need a certain kind of pup. We found a breeder we like, aren't interested in showing, and these pups are about $1200. (Normally I'd choose to rescue, but we'd like our first pup to be from a breeder, just in case Matt's allergies can't handle it - with a breeder, they always take the dog back, and with rescues, you just never know what would happen to them. Once we know his allergies are ok with a certain breed, the next dog will be a rescue.)
And no, I'm not telling you the dog's name. It's like telling you a baby's name that you like before you're're bound to have someone say, "Oh, that's a terrible name!"

5. A cabana boy to wave palm fronds, serve drinks, and break down the awful looking pigeon coop in the corner of our property. Really, it's ugly. More on that in a future post.

So as you can see, I don't need much for my birthday. Not much at all!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Berry Nice

No horsey post today. Instead, we're going back to Gardening 101, or, KC Doesn't Know What the Heck She's Doing So Let's Hope She Doesn't Kill These Plants.

I had a busy day yesterday, but Horsewife Cyn and I stopped over at a local nursery to check it out, and so I could get some strawberry seeds and other sundry items. Turns out, this nursery (which is huge on the outside) is not so huge after all, and had very limited selection! Phooey. However, they did have already started blueberry bushes, and strawberry plants.

Score! I spent more, yes, but on the other hand, someone else did the hard work for me.

I inhale strawberries and blueberries all summer long. To the point where you can visibly notice the difference on our grocery bill when I stop buying them. Blueberries in particular are so expensive these days. How can something so good for you be that expensive? It's just not fair.

So I got my most favorite thing from Jersey (aside from my niece and nephews, who live there): Jersey blueberries.
I think we should totally name these two fine-looking specimens. And since they cross pollinate each other, perhaps one is a girl and one is a boy? Any takers?
Those little buds will turn into flowers, which will then turn into, you guessed it, blueberries!

That's my happy little strawberry plant. The lady at the nursery said I can plant them in the ground now, but seeing as how we're still having frost and freezing nights, methinks not. So they all get carted inside for the evenings now.

And, my teeny little sprouts from last week, are getting bigger by the day - I can hardly believe how fast some are growing!
Even the shy peppers are beginning to emerge. Free salad. Yum.
This is the happiest green bean plant I've ever seen. I hope frosts end soon so I can get these babies in the ground.

Matt is thrilled. He loves the fact that there's a jungle in our bedroom every night when I bring our plants in.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Jump for Joy!

Zeus jumped his first fence today!

I cheered from the sidelines. Sort of.

Zeus is in the process of learning to lunge.

What's a lunge?

It's when you step forward with one leg, hands in the air, you can do it with me now, channel your inner Richard Simmons....
Just kidding. He is one happy dude.

Anyway, lunging a horse involves a really long leadline - a lunge line - which is about 30 feet or so. Basically, the horse works in a circle with you at the center, calling the shots using the lunge line and in some cases, a lunge whip. (Note: I never use a lunge whip ON the horses, just to flick in their direction if they need some encouragement. With Zeus, I don't even use one - he doesn't need it!)

Zeus didn't have a clue how to lunge when I got him. It took many weeks of work before he would even go in a circle without screeching to a halt, panicking, or just turning in towards me because he didn't know what else to do. I'm happy to say, he's a smart cookie, and is now lunging better than Richard Simmons.

Can you imagine that guy with a lunge whip? Look out, America!


I put a teeny crossrail in the ring today, small enough that he could walk over it, which we did together. Once he was warmed up and did well over some ground poles, up and over we went! (Email peeps: there's a video here!)

He was quite pleased with himself! I was too. I'm always surprised at how sensible he is in certain situations.

I will accept accolades now, for handling a camera and a silly horse on a lunge line all at the same time. I did cut the video off quickly, because I really had to be using both hands!

After a few jumps, back to the barn we went for some down time.

Zeus takes his down time very seriously, and since he's only four, he needs naps, much like a toddler.
Whew! That jumping really wore him out. He'll sleep well tonight!

ETA: I just noticed in the pic of Zeus yawning, it looks like he's eating our house. LOL.

All You Need is Love

Do you remember the story I told you about Siggy? He's been here at TMF for roughly a week and a half, and so far, is loving it. How can you not? My barn is cleaner than my house.

Not that Siggy would know, he hasn't been in the house yet. But, there's a first time for everything!

A great friend of mine, Cynthia (aka Cyn, aka one of the Horsewives) expressed an interest in doing more than taking lessons on Siggy - she was interested in possibly half leasing him.

Now, what's a half lease? In the manner of Aislinn and Cat, both loyal blog readers, does she lease the front half of the horse, or the back half? (Ew.)

Both! In a half lease, she pays partial board for Siggy, and in return, she can come and ride him whenever she likes. In the meantime, we can still use him for lessons and for Matt to ride.

Essentially, it's all the fun parts of owning a horse, without the headaches. A full lease is when no one else but Cyn rides him.

They met for the first time last Wednesday, and it was love at first sight. Or bite. Cyn came loaded down with bushels of apples and pounds of carrots. Siggy took her for a lovely ride, was the unflappable, charming gentleman he always is, and Cyn fell hard and fast.

I think Siggy did too.

They saw each other again on Saturday. Cyn is clearly stroking his ego here, and he's loving every second of it. A picture speaks a thousand words, don't you think?
(Photo by Arliss Paddock)

Cyn choosing to half lease Siggy means this boy can now get all the extra love, attention and focus that he perhaps never got in his prior life, before Akindale pulled him out of the Kill Pen at auction.

My title at TMF? Trainer/ Coach/ Matchmaker. Sigh!

Monday, April 12, 2010


The puppies are here, the puppies are here!

Congratulations to Mom Checkers, who did a fabulous job in labor and delivery. Actually, she just looked cute in delivery, no Lamaze needed, since she had a C-Section. But she did beautifully, and all pups are healthy and happy.
And so freaking cute I can't stand it.

Why does Matt have to be allergic? WHY?
Well, right now they sort of resemble little gerbils more than actual puppies. Give them a week or two, and you'll be falling off your chair from a whack upside the head of cuteness.

From Left:
Pup #1: Slider. Looks like this one slid into sleeping position facefirst. Or, so teeny that she can go between two hamburger buns for a photo op.

Pup #2: Banana Boat. Look at that pink nose! Someone should get that pup some sunscreen. Nickname: Coppertone.

Pup #3: Rumpy. Also known as my long lost sibling, he/ she has quite a substantial backside, not unlike yours truly!

Pup #4: Moose. My mom named that one, considering her size. Ladies and Gents, that's a little female - and she's bigger than the two boys in the litter. Someone likes her meals, eh?

Doesn't Checkers look like the devoted SuperMom? A calm, contented but alert look on her face, surveying her four little masterpieces.
I am sure that look will transform to "Please, someone else watch these damn kids so I can get a few minutes of peace over here!" in a matter of weeks.

I'll take them, Chex!

Either way, we are so happy that these little bundles of fluff have arrived safely. I'm an Auntie!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Animal House

I should have known.

The animals are taking over TMF!

Well, what did you expect?

I absolutely love nature. Plants, animals, sky, clouds....even the things that make me squeal, like the little resident frogs in our stream who must love hearing me shriek, because they all take flying leaps at me.

But in the past few weeks, there have been more animals than usual on our property. We now have some regular visitors.
I feel like that photo should be in the National Enquirer. It's grainy and you have to look at just the right angle to see Percy, the male mallard duck who has taken up residence in our horse field. (We're not under water. We have a stream running through the middle of the field.) His mate, Petunia, is somewhere over there, but she's brown, so good luck spotting her.
This photo is a bit clearer. I felt like the Quackarazzi, sneaking around our wood pile to get close enough to get a photo. They're very wary of people, which is good - that means they're less likely to be hunted by my fellow men. That makes me happy.

I have to admit, I didn't name Percy and Petunia. They are reincarnations of a pair of mallards that visited my parents every spring when a little pond would form in their front yard. Aren't they cute?

Then, yesterday I was talking to a very dear friend who told me she's got a bun in the oven (yay!) and as I'm gushing happy baby thoughts, I see something out my front window.
That's Mojo, lying down facing away from us. But who is looking at me?

Mojo's got a girlfriend! He even brought a mouse over and plonked it in front of her, the equivalent of kitty flowers or jewelry.

I'm happy to report that the mouse is not on my front porch steps anymore. Whew!

Or, perhaps Mojo has a boyfriend. Whatever this kitty is, they seem to be close. Which is great, since Whimsey and Monster, stuck in the house, practically snap, claw, slather and foam at the mouth when Mojo approaches our screen door.

If it's a boyfriend Mojo's got, I guess the mouse would be the equivalent of some Barbra Streisand CDs and a bunch of rhinestones.

Good for him!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Sprouts that Shout!

A few entries back, I asked all my readers to help me identify some plants. The answers ran the gamut, and although many of them look interesting, some got the boot, especially the ones around the Brussels Sprouts tag.

I had particular veggies I was interested in trying to grow. Veggies that I eat a lot of, Matt eats a lot of....

Let's be honest here. He eats a lot of everything.

Aaaaand carrots. Many, many carrots. I could save a bundle if I grew my own! Not that we eat a ton of them, but the horses are rather fond of carrots.

I have no idea how successful I'm going to be in terms of gardening, but I did have success, one year, of growing a very happy tomato plant on my 14th Street fire escape in NYC. I'm pretty sure it grew on bus fumes as the M14 roared past, but either way, friends would look agog as I said, "How about some fresh picked tomatoes for our salad?" I'd stick my arm out the window, and voila! Beautiful, red tomatoes! I was, indeed, the garden version Mary Poppins in the East Village that year.

I've never grown anything from a seed, I've always had little plants to start with - basically, someone else did the hard work for me. This year, I was inspired by my great friend Lizzie to try growing some veggies from seeds.

Off we went to Home Depot for all things garden. I got some terra cotta pots, and also some Jiffy Pots, which are these cool peat pots that when the sprouts are ready, you just plunk the entire thing in the ground - pot and all. The peat disintegrates into the ground, essentially making transplanting foolproof.

We shall see about that.
Here we are at roughly 2 weeks ago, when they were just....pots. And dirt. Aren't you just blown away by how interesting the photography is?

Since I'm such a plant novice, I thought it would be a good idea to label the pots with a Sharpie marker, so I'd know what was growing. Otherwise, I'd have no idea. Here we have two sunflowers on the left, on a double date with a pair of carrots.

And then I waited. And waited some more. And stared at the dirt. And loved them to death with water.

Lo and behold, look what happened this weekend!

Oh, happy day!

In fact, a whole bunch of them!
Look at that happy little sunflower. I've never grown a sunflower. They're all cropping up!
And tiny, little tomato plants. Such cute little babies. From a seed!

The only veggie that happens to be quite shy and not ready to come out yet are...
The peppers. They are just not very happy, for whatever reason. Maybe they're just late bloomers.

Stay tuned to see how well everything else is growing! Can you believe it? I may just have a green thumb after all!

This week, anyway.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Heavens to Bexy!

My BFF is here!

Well, let me rephrase that. She was here. On Monday. Yes, I realize it's Wednesday, but I was having so much fun with her and the new boys that I didn't blog.


Anyway, my best gal pal's name is Rebecca. Some call her Becca. I call her Bex. Or Bexy. Or Sexy Bexy. Or Bexalicious, Bexaholic, Bex Ran Red, Bexter, somebody stop me! Bex lives in London now, where she has a great (but demanding) job, good friends, and various other things (blokes and pints and fish and chips, bangers and mash) keeping her busy.
Look how happy she is! She's just off a flight, and I'm going all paparazzi on her. Poor thing.

About 10 minutes after she arrived, I told her to slap on her boots, because I had two horses to ride and she was going to come out and enjoy all the sunshine and grass and horse fur she can handle!

The horses are shedding. A lot.

Bex gleefully came out, took many photos, and then I accidentally deleted them. Not to mention, I forgot my camera in the house. Because you know, it's such a long walk to the house from the barn.


Luckily, Bex had her iPhone handy, so we still got some photographic fun. Even better, Bex decided to hop on our new arrival, Siggy, who was a perfect gentleman and even took her on a little trot, just in case she missed the feeling of turbulence.
Don't you love how high her knees are? Bex is all leg, and I'm not. That's my dressage saddle, and in dressage, your stirrup irons are longer than normal so you can wrap your leg around the horse for commands. Well. After looking at this photo of Bex (I didn't adjust the irons for her), I have quite the stumpy legs. And she's only 2'' taller than me! Apparently, those 2'' are 2'' of leg on that girl.

I love my Bex. I miss her already. I only spent about an hour waxing poetic about how incredible it would be if she "surprised" me at my 30th birthday party in August.

I promise I'll act surprised, Bexy!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Summer Boys

Let me put this plainly.

Topaz is a cougar. Or Lady Gaga with dapples. They have the same platinum locks, it makes sense.

I am convinced, she's going to live forever with all this eye candy wandering about.
Today was the big day where Siggy and EZ arrived here at TMF, and after much preparation, Erin pulled in and they both ambled off the trailer.

After much excitement, lots of hay, and even more manure (yeesh), it was time to unleash the beasts.

Now, putting them all out together is never a good idea. You have to let them get to know each other over time and bond.

Topaz and Zeus, EZ and Siggy. Easy, right?

Um, no. Especially when you have a little blonde harlot in the crowd.

Siggy and EZ did very well in my smaller paddock and immediately got along, sharing everything.
The famous one-headed horse, ladies and gentlemen!

Seriously, they were really cute and happy together.
And peeking around corners, hoping the cute boys would notice her, was our beloved little minx.
"Is he looking this way? How does my mane look?"

This picture speaks a thousand words....clearly, it's a Boys Night in the mud paddock, and Topaz was planning her own little Bachelorette Party over there in the corner.
Zeus just rolled his eyes, snorted, and went back to the grass.

Oh, how us ladies do love those Summer Boys...sigh.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Come Alive

Do me a favor. Press Play on the video and listen as you read this post.

(Email readers, click on the blog post to go to my blog site and get video!)

That's an indie artist, Gavin Mikhail, who does piano rock music.

Today was an ending of sorts for me. I had a job I liked in NYC, and when we moved to TMF, I went part time. But before that, almost 10 years ago, I was at a crossroads in my life after a riding injury, and NYC welcomed me with open arms. I've been lucky while I was there, career-wise and with the many friendships I've made along the way, some that will last a lifetime. Fashion Week, tons of parties and late nights (early mornings sounds more appropriate!), some scary moments but so many wonderful ones too. I learned so much about myself, from moving on my own to a studio on 14th Street, meeting tons of people, getting in over my head with shopping, dating, more shopping, and more dating. Matt and I had our first date in Manhattan, and he proposed there. My best friends congregate there for cocktails and catching up, even though some of them live half a world away. NYC has been good to me.

With TMF really taking off, it was time to bid NYC adieu for work purposes. As my train was pulling out of Grand Central for the last time, with the underground lights slipping past, this song came on my iPod. I don't know why, but for whatever reason, it took on new meaning, and how now, with this new beginning with TMF, I am finally at peace and able to "Come Alive."

But before I left, I got the chance to have lunch with some of my favorite people!
Yes, 12 of my favorite coworkers came out for a Last Day Lunch! It was really a celebration, as I was giddy to be able to follow my bliss, and all these fantastic people were happy for me.
As the train raced under skyscrapers, thousands of pedestrians, cabs and bodegas, I couldn't help but wonder: how many people have that many coworkers, at their job, that care about them? That there are now strong friendships that will last beyond lunch, or meetings?
I think I'm very fortunate.

I hope that all of my friends from Langan are all able to Come Alive in their own ways, and allow me to celebrate with them too as they shoot for their dreams.

I don't think this song is meant to be spiritual, but I couldn't help but feel a pull as it played, like someone (perhaps my grandmother, Nana, in Heaven?) had helped show me where I'm meant to be now, and that this song was intended to make me understand that while timing is everything, the people you meet every day also guide you in your journey, perhaps unbeknownst to you at the time.

"Just stand up tall
For what you believe in all the time
And life will work out fine for you
And me
You'll see.."

To all my work buddies - I love you bunches, come up and visit, play in my veggie garden, and who wants some free fertilizer?