Monday, December 19, 2016

2016 Year in Review

These are my favorite posts of the year! I love looking back at everyone's adventures and remembering what we got through. Here goes.


Not much changes about January. It's a shitty month with bad weather, which prompts survivalist posts like "The Winter Rider" where I talk about making smart choices to not die.

It also prompts thinking posts like "Training the Sensitive Horse" where I reflect on the type of horse Courage is and the best ways to get through to him. And sappy posts about trust and relationships, like this one.
january trotting!

Apparently the weather finally decided to be less horrible, because Courage and I got ourselves back in regular(ish) lessons. In Learning Lessons, we used our trainer as a relationship counselor and started figuring out hard to get through the hard parts together. 

And then there was the Fantastic or Insane post where I talked about starting to bridge the gap between Courage being nuts and Courage being rideable. We actually had a lesson where I rode the whole time and he kept his brain in his head. Proggress! 
feb trotting!
And who can forget that one time Lindsey and I went complete nuts and bought a pile of shit from India! 


Our relationship continued changing in March. Courage was learning how to trust me, and I was realizing that riding better meant deep ass soreness

march trotting! (early precious sighting)


I mentioned I was trying saddles. 

That escalated quickly. I fell in love and sold a good chunk of the hoard to afford it.

On a riding front, things were very mixed. Courage went to his first show of the year and freaking killed it at training level (70% WHAT WHAT). At home, he was a nut job who wouldn't let me catch him in the field.
april show trotting


May was basically one start-to-finish shitshow. As per the usual, I guess. 

We had out first level debut at a schooling show. Day one was bad, day two was worse. 

After that, I snarked at people who felt the need to run me down and opted out of paying through the nose to go fail at recognized shows.
may trotting!
Disappointing is the best thing I can say about that month.


In June, we rallied and tried to go to another show. It. Was. Terrible. 

I struggled with whether to keep Courage. I got laid off from my job. I got super depressed and decked my horse out like he was going to a show.
June trotting
I started seeing some progress on the lunge line from our consistency under saddle, but it was not really making up for the rest of my life.


This month at least started out on a better note--I wrote a guide to the hot, emotional horse and talked about how the little things added up to game changers for Courage. I also got my job back, which is a game changer for me. 
We celebrated our three year anniversary together and he stepped out of the closet. I apparently failed at getting any under-saddle kickass trotting pictures, but we did canter sometimes.

Years in a row of posting every weekday was wearing on me though.


I was dealing with heavy personal issues and piling internet dumbasses on top proved to be too much to handle, so I signed off for a bit. Even with his struggles, Courage was helping me deal with life. 

I started reflecting on the process of developing a horse without getting bogged down in the daily details. Courage and I revisited our jumper roots (with mixed results). 
August trotting
We ended the month with new sparkles and a new appreciation for the partnership we were building.


September ushered us in to a new era--Courage started pro training. I also discovered that a horse in training expects to be ridden by people who know what they're doing.

I also audited a Tik Maynard clinic that helped me think about how and why I did what I did with Courage. 
september trotting
I also wrote a craft how-to for people who don't craft. It's harder than you'd think.


We kicked things into gear on the training front--I got myself into lessons and Courage was developing well. I had a family crisis that entailed skipping a lot of barn days and buying a lot of tack

We also tried out some new bodywork stuff that went really well. We even signed up for an open show
october trotting
What could possibly go wrong? 


For reasons that I'm sure are COMPLETELY UNRELATED to 2016 taking a massive dump all over me, November landed me back on the struggle bus in terms of Courage. Our open show was a catastrophe, Courage was increasingly worse at home, and I wasn't coping well

I did come up with a plan and ride in a clinic, but things were not good.
November Trotting


December is pretty anti-climactic. I had an inspired revelation about why my horse was a complete lunatic, but then my poor car got blown to smithereens and I still haven't recovered. 

I was trying to stay consistent with the pro training, but the weather and the horse are stubbornly determined to not cooperate. Courage might be back under saddle this week. Or maybe not til February. 
yeah let's think that one through carefully
I can't say I'm sad to see 2016 go. It's been a pretty terrible year on a lot of levels. Despite all that, I've learned a lot and hey, if you examine my monthly trotting pictures, there is definitely progress shown. 

Onwards and upwards! 


  1. I'm so over 2016 for many reasons. Here is to having a better 2017. You guys have made progress in my opinion despite Courage's many many opinions.

  2. Horse things are always up and down right?? Ugh, I'm never used to it

  3. i'm not sorry to say goodbye to 2016 either. not at all sorry. i do <3 these posts tho (but am seriously struggling with my own.... bc wow. apparently i'm still not over it lol).

    what we really need tho is a "2016 in {tack} review" post haha

    1. Ha! That would be amazing. I intentionally skipped all the tack posts so I could just make this a riding wrap up but yeah...

  4. Why didn't the fail photo IG make this list? Cause that was a highlight of my year... LOL

  5. You guys are my favs. A rough year, but you still kicked through and had some LOVELY trotting pictures! Here's to even more progress in 2017!

  6. It's been a tough year for sure. I do see progress in the photos and I admire your, well, courage. :)

  7. So much great fashion. Such good memes. Love reading, hated your "break", screw the jerk faces. Here's to a great 2017 with c-rage!

  8. Huge improvement in that trot! And for some reason the very first photo in this post is making me giggle uncontrollably every time I scroll by it... I think I'm gonna go scroll again. Cheers to 2017!

  9. I hope 2017 makes you forget all about 2016 (in only good ways of course!)


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