Friday, March 6, 2015

Ammy Hour: Meet Lauren!

biggest problem: too many good pictures
I always love meeting new bloggers, but there's something fun about profiling established bloggers as well. You probably know Lauren from She Moved To Texas already (who doesn't?!), but here's the rundown on how she balances life and horses and that satin addiction.

1) You’re at dinner with work colleagues. How do you introduce yourself?
I am the worst at introductions, and I also only go to work dinner with colleagues who already know me.  In that situation, I typically say something like... "So is anybody else going to order a glass of wine?"

too cute
2) But what you really meant to say was this:  "No, really... who's getting wine?  Should we do a bottle?"

3) Tell us about your horse and how you met him.
Simon is 2006 OTTB, but more importantly the thing I am most proud of in my life.  When I met him he was pretty skinny with few marketable skills and a sketchy history of lameness.  Now he's less skinny with more skills and a less sketchy history of lameness ;)  I ended up with him because he wasn't the world's best school horse, but luckily I can't think of a better horse for me right now.  Simon reaffirmed my faith that everything in life happens for a reason!

this pic=so much win
4) What do you do with your horse?
We show hunter/jumpers and generally try to enjoy life together.  Right now that means a lot of miles and confidence building in the baby jumper ring, but we toss in the occasional hunter derby and bridleless riding session for funsies.  I also haven't abandoned my idea of showing him low level dressage, but the stars haven't aligned for that quite yet.

5) Where are you going together?
I don't really know.  I have this high lofty goal of eventually showing in the Take 2 Thoroughbred jumper division, which is realistic but definitely a struggle.  It's more important to me that we both remain happy and healthy together.  Simon has a lifelong home with me, and I learned long ago not to spend too much time planning out every little detail with horses.  Once you make a plan, they will show you how to change that plan!

Simon has goals too
6) What does success with horses look like for you?
My horse leaves the show happy and feeling like a million bucks because he did his job.  I leave the show feeling like I improved from the first class but still have things to work on.  Neither of us feel beaten down or scared by what we tried to do.  Bonus points if we're awarded fair ribbons for our efforts.

7) How do you finance the addiction?
I work for a video game company doing content marketing and UI design.  It's a random job I fell into about four years ago, but I really love it.  I've been challenged here and continue to learn and grow while getting a pay check that allows me to keep Sir Simon up to his expectations.

so many great moments
8) What does your support team look like?
My husband isn't in the forefront (he claims horse shows are boring... can you believe it?) but he's probably my biggest supporter.  He indirectly finances the sport and also doesn't get upset when I spend lots of time at the barn or horse shows.  Outside of him, my trainer is hugely important.  She's been key in making Simon the solid citizen he is today and she deals with my crazy amateur brain without ever getting visibly frustrated at me. Since I get frustrated at myself, I consider this fact shocking and amazing.

let's do this
9) What are your horse keeping arrangements?
I board, and I'm a happy boarder.  I don't mind writing a check for having a lot of life balance and I'm never going to be one of those people who just MUST see my horse every day.  I love my horse, but I also love my life outside of horses.

10) How often do you ride?
Weather permitting, I try to hit 3-5 days a week.  Usually I end up around 4-5 when we're actively showing.

so pretty together
11) What’s the single biggest thing that helps you achieve your goals?
Breaking them down into tiny steps, and believing that I can.  If I walk into the ring and honestly believe I won't have any trouble - I don't.  For me riding is mostly mental right now and I'm slowly winning that battle bit by bit.

horse showing bosses
12) If there was one thing you could say to people getting ready to join the ranks of riding (or re-riding) adults, what would it be?
Remember that this is for fun, but also know it's going to be really hard.  There will be nights that you cry and worry and stress, but if you're in the right situation you'll do a LOT more smiling than you ever thought.  Horses teach you more about life than they do about riding, and a solid relationship with the right horse is one of the best feelings in the world.

13) Bottom Line:
I really like ponies.  And ribbons.  And sunshine.  And pearls.  I could go on.  Mostly though, I like Simon.

Many thanks to Lauren for participating! Do you want to be featured on Ammy Hour? Do you know someone who should be? Contact me!


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