Looking Back 2017

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As the sun sets on 2017 and we all look forward to welcoming 2018, as I do every New Year’s Eve, it is time to look back and give my farewell tribute to the year.  I’ve tried to condense the photos as best I could, but damn, it has been a lot of good times this year, so here are the MANY photos that sum it all up.

JANUARY

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At the beginning of the year my Aunt was coming out to ride with me.  My horses are a bit too “ranchy” and not a good match for what she is looking for in her riding experience.  She has chosen to ride schooling and lesson horses now, however, I truly cherish the few times that we did get to spend in the saddle together.
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Camping in January & wearing short sleeves???  YES! PLEASE! This was a really fun trip with two other ladies and it was all the more special to be happening in the middle of Winter.
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A dear riding friend from Louisiana came to town for a work conference.  She added a few extra days to the trip which gave myself and another friend some time to get her in the saddle.  The ride did not go perfectly but it was still a special ride for the three of us to be able to spend time on the trails together.

FEBRUARY

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The Archery clinic was amazing.  It was so fun to try something new.  The weekend of this clinic had two special bonuses: I finished my challenge rides and hours and one of my good friends from across the state came to stay with us to participate in this clinic and go trail riding the next day.

MARCH

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I had completed the challenge with Tucker so many weeks earlier than planned, that I decided getting some saddle time with Freckles would be good.  I spent most of March riding her to achieve her own little “mini” challenge.

APRIL

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This was hands down my absolute favorite ride of 2017.  It was an unexpected trip to South Mountain State Park with two of my favorite riding buddies.  The views were spectacular and I cannot wait to go back.
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It was so great you get two photos from the same ride.  This was also the first of several trips that I made to the various Mountains of NC this year.

MAY

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I only did one Dressage Show this year.  We had fun and I’m looking forward to adding a couple more to the 2018 calendar.

JUNE

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We added four baby chicks to the flock.
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With a few other riding friends, I took both the big horses down to my Trainer’s house for the weekend .  It was filled with laughter, riding, lessons and an all around good time.
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Mountain getaway with my hubby for his Birthday.  We watched a polo match, did some excellent hiking and ate some delicious food.

JULY

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With horses in tow we headed back up to the Mountains.  Moses Cone Manor this time.
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I was VERY excited that the rhododendrons were in bloom.  In all my years going to the Mountains I had never seen them in full flower.

AUGUST

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August was cool (I don’t mean the temps) because a friend (the same one that came to the Archery clinic)  that teaches had a Summer break and I was able to swing some weekdays off so we could meet in the middle and take a weekly trail ride at Morrow Mountain State Park.
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And on one of those trips we had MORE friends join us.

SEPTEMBER

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I got to audit a 3 day Buck Brannaman clinic.  I learned a ton!
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We had the exterior of the house professionally painted.
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I unprofessionally painted all of our fence.  It was the project from hell and for the first time since moving here I was glad we didn’t have more acreage than we do.

OCTOBER

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This was another weekday where me & the bestest skipped out of work to go riding.  The place was so quiet and we had it all to ourselves.  The horses were perfect and we all just enjoyed being together.
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THIS MOMENT RIGHT HERE IS ONE OF THE GREATEST OF ALL 2017.  That’s my friend doing her first dressage show.  Doing something that even a year ago she probably never dreamed would happen.  And there they are…looking AMAZING.  I am so proud!

NOVEMBER

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Trail ride side trip at Cedar Rock on our way to a clinic on the East side of the state.
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Attended a Remount Horsemanship clinic.  We pushed ourselves and became a better horse & rider because of it.
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Thanksgiving week camping trip with the hubby.  This was the only time all year the two of us camped together which is pretty unusual.  It was just the two of us and we had a great time.
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The weather and the views were perfect.

DECEMBER

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This was a local ride with two GREAT riding buddies.  Something about this ride was just special.  We laughed and laughed and chatted and chatted and the whole time was just one big frickin’ blast.
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Trail ride with my trainers/friends.  It was his 50th and the first time they had been able to get out and ride together with no kiddos to worry about.  It was a trip to ride with them.
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The last couple weeks of the year have been a nice change of pace.  The schedule hasn’t been too full.  There has been some riding going on, but it has been mostly leisurely and even that has been a bit less frequent than through the typical year.

Holy Cow…What a year!!!!  And this was just the highlights.  There were so many other great moments and rides that I didn’t include.  I am grateful and so fortunate.

 

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