April has truly been a Season of Change as I feel like Winter has officially left the building! Spring has sprung and we all have pollen covered cars and seasonal allergies to prove it. My Birthday is in April and, as we all should, I celebrated all month long.
I started things out with a solitary walk at our local botanic gardens. I wanted to take advantage of a beautiful day, blooming flowers and the lack of crowd that a weekday brings.
I’ve already given you a taste of the of the photo shoot I did at the mountain bike race in my newly introduced monthly challenge. This was a photo club outing and was tied to a much larger event that the venue was hosting which included the bike race, a 5k, a 10k a trekking challenge and a scavenger hunt. It was a largely attended event and I heard lots of people saying lots of positive things throughout the day.
Just a few days after I went to the gardens alone, hubby & I found ourselves right back at the same location. It was a very different experience this time. It was the one day of the year that they open the doors and welcome dogs. Owners come out in mass to let their dogs experience a setting they don’t normally get to be a part of. We brought one of our dogs along, the one most suited to behave himself in this type of setting, and although crowded, it was a fun afternoon.
I shared my thoughts on the weekend I spent with the raptors in THIS post, so I will not rehash that experience, but here are a couple more pics from that shoot that you have not seen before.
Three friends & I took a road trip up to Columbus, Ohio for Equine Affaire. We spent 5 glorious days in the bubble of all the things horses. They had everything to offer, no matter your discipline, breed preference, learning style or involvement level. The days were filled with learning opportunities at mini clinics, horse inspired entertainment, demonstrations, educational forums, seminars and shopping…so…much…shopping.
Being at Equine Affaire inspired me to get back into a learning frame of mind and get into a progressive state with my horse. I was already scheduled to do an overnight trip for some trail riding with one of my friends on the East side of the state who happens to live near one of my favorite trainers. While still in Ohio I sent her a text to see if we could squeeze in a lesson while I was out there. She pulled some strings and made it happen. The lesson not only inspired THIS post but it got our butts in gear. We focused on the beginnings of collection and both of us using our bodies in more appropriate and efficient ways. I was so pleased with Tucker because even after having 6 months off from this type of work he didn’t skip a beat when I picked him up and asked him to explore different ways of moving. It’s physically hard on a horse and his try was amazing. The only little hitch was the blown tire on the way out there. I was lucky though because it happened right at an exit that happened to have a tire place right when you pulled off. I pulled the trailer in, a man came out to greet me and took it from there, in 15 minutes I was back on the road. I was so grateful. Tucker on the other hand could’ve done without the air wrench under his feet.
A couple of days after the lesson, Tucker & I loaded back up to meet a friend on the trails. It was not ideal weather for a ride as it was cold, windy and rainy, but we had fun anyway. I think balancing out learning sessions with fun low pressure rides is essential to keeping a horse engaged in wanting to spend time with you.
On the last Saturday of the month the photo contest I was in charge of, which I introduced you to in THIS post, finally happened. It was a huge success. We got about 50 submissions, narrowed it down to 10 amazing finalists and then after 5 hours in the booth and 1002 votes we were able to pick our top three winners. I have to give a huge shout out to my volunteers that helped pull this off and to Shutterfly that donated some really nice copies of the images for display.
I loved working in the booth and watching the different reactions and emotions the various images would elicit from the people coming in to vote. That being said, I am also glad this contest is over. It was lot of time and coordination to pull this thing off and having it behind me feels great.
Today was my Birthday which also happens to be hubby & I’s anniversary. We took a day trip up to the mountains for some hiking, views, a scenic drive and a nice lunch. April has really been a hell of a great month!!!!