Thursday, July 10, 2014

We are all set now!!!

Ok, we are nearly, finally, sorta, kinda up to speed with each other now!!! The day is Thursday and the month is July, the year 2014!!! Phew!! After unpacking, and settling in after we arrived in April it has been nothing but marathon pace for me. The workload is tough and at times overwhelming - simply because I have been learning so much in the last few months sometimes by brain just goes into overdrive! 

Taking a break from the saddle from some cross training - HIKING!!

The top of Mount Major, New Hampshire

Sun has arrived and the blue sky is back!

Enjoying what wonderful things New Hampshire has to offer

June saw the arrival of one very special visitor to Foster Meadow. None other then my great friend and fellow Irish team mate back in the day - Eavan Murphy. Eavan was lucky enough to stay at the farm for a month to ride and work with Pam, before she went on her way to New York for the rest of the summer. I have to say, it was so great having her and I got to be a tourist again, having to show her around - added bonus!
Standard selfie after an afternoon lesson

Adventures!!! To the BEN AND JERRY FACTORY. It really is all you can dream off and MORE!!

Classic tourist behaviour
Hiking a maple trail

Embracing tourism and American-ism...MINI GOLF!!

Dry weather makes for great car washing days

Evening drive lake views

I show off my delightful tan lines WHENEVER I can!

Buying a Ferrari ;)

One of our last rides together with Vito and Aldegonda

Now onto the most exciting news, and the most recent reason why I have not been able to commit to the blog has best as I can. I have been lucky/blessed/fortunate enough to start riding an amazing horse - Vito. He is a bay, Dutch warmblood and let me tell you - he knows a hell of alot more then I do!! Learning how to ride him has probably been the most difficult period I have had here since coming to Pam. So many things happen at once and so many things are on my checklist to cross off.  Like 'where are the shoulders?' 'Is his neck straight?' 'Why can't I move my leg faster to ask for the flying change?!' However, I am not naive and I am aware it all takes time and I am loving every minute of it!. For once I am being taught rather then being the teacher, which has been the case most of my riding career. We had our first outing at a show in June, competing at fourth lever (Adv Medium at home) and it was the best weekend! If I could have slowed the time down I would have. I felt like the test lasted 3 seconds! Our next show is on Sunday..... I have the tail coat in my sights!!  

Vito with his ribbons

I will be updating the blog after the show, with the latest reports and pictures. I am so excited at what lies ahead and for the rest of the summer!! 

Until next time,

Catch up Part 2

Finally back in the 'Shire!! After 30 hours on the shipper all the horses arrived safe and sound - and ready to be in their beds!! 

Aldegonda resting after the trip

Tackling and investigating the snow
Most of you that know me, also know my family which includes the wonderful Emma, my only sister. Emma graduated up to my old mount Creganna Clover or 'Bobby' as he is known as at home. Emma has had unbelievable success on him since I moved away - which is sad since I don't get to see them in action, and its also scary....pressure is being put on me to keep things up over here since this combo are dominating the scene at home!!!
Emma has also taken over my gardening duties since I left (THANK GOD!!!!)
Bobby, Emma, Marian (the sheep!) and Dad

Emma  and Bobby in action

Other combinations that are creating frequent homesick-ness for me and keeping me on my toes are my cousins Jane and Lara. Both proving to be exceptional pilots, and bringing home the winning ribbons on a weekly basis. I am secretly delighted that I am going to have an army of wonderful riders to torture with dressage when I get home!! 

My Uncle Mark, with my god daughter Lara and pony that has taught me how to stick to a saddle - 'Smarty Pants'

Jane on Dancer, winning and dominating the scene!!
Arriving back in New Hampshire warrants a drastic wardrobe change! No more shorts and bikinis - its long sleeves, hats and scarfs - until JUNE!!!! Global warming is most definitely real! Again, thankfully the horses are very adaptable with the weather change. The barn in New Hampshire is indoor, unlike Florida - so between rugs and doors closed it stays at a nice temp all day.

Teaching in the not so hot sun!!

Ziggy enjoying some grass after the trip!

My great edible birthday package!! 

Ziggy surveying whats going on in the woods!

I found Misha like this - need I say more!

Our neighbour, Roger and his driving horses calling up for a visit when we returned

A very special horse that trained with Pam - 'Tome' LOVING his new home!
In a not so equine part of the adventurous life of Shauna and that Sheep, we experienced our first prom!! My old work colleague and dear friend Ali's sister Taylor asked me to do her makeup for her prom. Those who know me - know I CANNOT say no to anything that involves cosmetics!! It was a rare treat to be put back in the world of eyeliner and dresses rather then bridles and jodphurs. I had a great day with my adopted Potasky family and I am waiting on the next makeup function I am called to do!!! 
Taylor looking perfect!! 

Dressage by day, makeup by night!! 
That is all for this week!!! I am on a roll (and good Internet!) so my third installment will be up soon!! Until then,


Catch up time!!!

Hello hello hello!! As usual I start my blog with the reason behind my absence. Life as a nomadic dressage rider is tough - and I have a major first world problem......lack and or sporadic Internet! However, since my last post many things have happened. I have settled back in New Hampshire after the epic road trip up from Florida, I turned 24, entered my second year as barn manager here at Foster Meadows and most importantly I have not stopped learning from Pam - in and out of the saddle! 

While I was packing the Florida barn up, Pam took her ONLY vacation of the year. She visited family in both France and Ireland. And let me tell you, from the stories she came back with she had a ball in Galway!!
Pam and the Irish gang when she was visiting home
Here are a few snaps of the last few days in Florida and the first few days in New Hampshire that didn't make the last post.
Waving goodbye to shorts for awhile!

One of the last morning sky's in Florida

The packing begins!!

Last Florida staff photo

Misha 'helping' with the packing

Two gents playing

Very nice office view

Usual sight in the evening
One of the perks of being in such a small, condensed community in Florida is, seeing the greats is a regular thing!! Riders and trainers who I would only have ever read about, and or seen on Youtube are literally on my doorstep, either training and competing for the winter season too, or are just over for a brief stint to give a clinic. I got to spend two days watching the great Michael Klimke teach at my barn - and of course had to do the tourist thing and ask for a photo!!  
Getting to meet Michael Klimke

Handgrazing in the sun
Let me tell you the thing about living in 'tropical' Florida for part of the year is THE TROPICAL weather. Scorching hot one day, tornado the next!! Luckily the horses deal with the drastic weather change very well, but the poor cat, dogs and arenas don't!! 
Different kinda blue sky!

The day the tornado came to visit

Not ideal!

Get your umbrellas!!

That's all for now, I am writing a second post right after I send this one live. I have a lot of interesting New Hampshire news to share!!