Liebster Award

A big thanks to Karen over at Bakersfield Dressage for nominating me for the Liebster Award. I've been enjoying reading the Liebster posts that have been making the rounds, and I'm happy to include my own here.

For those of you new to the award: The Liebster Blog Award recognizes the small fish in the blogging pond (bloggers with less than 200 followers). My background in German tells me that "lieben" is the verb for "love" and I know that "liebster" is a way of saying "darling," or "beloved." As such, this is not so much an "award" as a recognition by fellow bloggers in your community. I think that's pretty fun, especially in the close-knit world of equine bloggers! 

Here are the rules: 
* Thank the person who nominated you and include a link back to their blog.
* List 11 random facts about yourself.
* Answer the 11 questions given to you.
* Create 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate.
* Choose 11 bloggers with 200 or fewer followers to nominate and include links to their blogs.
* Go to each blogger's page and let them know you have nominated them. 
I'm going to do this a little differently, since most bloggers I know have pretty much been nominated. Instead, I'm going to link to some of my favorite blogs to read or some of my good friends with equine blogs to spread the love. But, they don't have to fill out the whole award thing again. 

My 11 Random Facts:
1. I have a degree in theatre and graphic design, which I used to get a job doing marketing for a college entertainment venue. It's a blast, but often interferes with my schedule in pretty unique ways. However, I do get to take pretty neat event photos (great practice for low-light/high speed situations...), keep my graphic design skills honed, and get my friends free tickets. Pretty worth it. 
Rascal Flatts 2013
2. I don't really have much of a sweet tooth. In fact, I almost never crave candy or chocolate. My one major weakness though? Licorice. Black or red, I don't care. I'm only insistent that it be real Australian-style, none of that Red Vines stuff will do. It's a serious addiction. I'm usually toting a couple of bags to every horse show, just to get me through.

3. I started riding at the age of six, at an eventing barn. We could never afford to own or lease horses, so instead I would barter in depth grooming and stall cleaning for more lessons or half-leases. I was always the kid put on the tough horses because I wasn't afraid of their crazy antics, and refused to fall off or be afraid if I did.

4. I've had two concussions, both fair severe and related to horse accidents. I sustained my first when I was kicked in the clavicle while grazing my horse after a lesson. I was twelve. The second was a couple of years later, and I was thrown from a pretty bratty gelding. The second concussion was really bad, and I actually lost about three days of memory. I was wearing a helmet for this injury, and actually didn't land on my head. Instead, we think the whiplash of the fall is what did the most damage. These head injuries are why I'm really insistent on wearing a helmet while riding or doing anything dangerous around horses (like loading an unpredictable horse!). I can't imagine what that second injury might have been if I hadn't been wearing my helmet!

5. When I was doing eventing growing up, I was terrified of any cross country jump bigger than a log. After my second concussion (which wasn't related to jumping at all), I actually gave up jumping for good. I didn't jump again until IHSA in college. It was then that I realized I wasn't afraid of jumping any more. In fact, even though Guinness and I are focused on dressage, I'd like to get back into eventing some day and do something bigger than beginner novice!

6. During college, I helped a friend train one of her family's horses. The mare's name was Sydney and she was a massive Belgian draft mare with the athelectism of a thoroughbred. This mare was known as a local escape artist, capable of easily jumping a 5ft property fence to flirt with the Arabians next door. She and I jumped under saddle too, including a massive ditch. While a complete brat, I loved her and wish we'd been able to keep her! 
7. One of my major life goals is to graduate with a Ph.D. in Art History. I'm a helpless history nerd (especially Early Greek - late Renaissance Mediterranean and European), and want to put my research skills back to use!

8. I am obsessed with architecture and home design. On slow days at work, I've been known to stream episodes of This Old House in the background while cleaning out my emails, and I'm completely addicted to Apartment Therapy

9. I'm a pretty OCD person, and I have perfectionist tendencies. This causes no end of frustration for my bosses, who are constantly telling me my designs are fine. Meanwhile, I'm usually stressing out over a single pixel that's just slightly out of order. I often think that perfectionists find a lot of enjoyment in dressage, and I'd be interested in seeing that others find that true.

10. I used to be a fairly avid runner, averaging 25-30 miles a week. Recently, I've started on the path back to that by training for a local half marathon. I'd forgotten how much I missed having running goals, and how much my running goals help keep me on track with all my other goals. Funny how that works!

11. I have two large hairy rescue dogs, one purebred Siberian husky and one sibe-shepherd cross. While they are a handful, I have a big problem passing up any German shepherd or Siberian I see posted at an animal shelter. So far, the sheer amount of hair I vacuum up weekly reminds me that I better keep my dog quota to two hairy creatures!

11 Questions Answered:
Q: Where did you meet the love of your life?
 A: I met the love of my life on Craigslist. Wait? No? You didn't mean my horse? Oh! I met my husband in college. I was stage managing A Midsummer Night's Dream at my tiny women's college, and we were desperate for men to audition for the play. Christian showed up to audition, and the rest, they say, is history.

Q: You've just won the lottery. Would you quit your job?
A: I would probably quit my job, but just so that I could use some of the money to go back to school for my art history degree. I like work!

Q: Black tack, or brown?
A: I love brown tack, and think there's nothing prettier than a lovely chestnut brown saddle on a liver chestnut horse, and I drool over some saddles at big shows. However, I own a bright chestnut and black tack looks really classy on him!

Q: What is one place you wouldn't want  to visit?
A: I absolutely have no desire to travel anywhere really hot. Florida, South America, and anywhere near the equator just do not make my list. 

Q: What's your favorite horse book?
A: Oh, this is a tough one. I'd have to say my favorite book isn't a single story, instead it's a collection of horse stories and poems given to me one year. The poems are haunting, and the stories are from all different eras. It's certainly not a children's book, and one I still treasure to this day.

Q: How many riding disciplines have you tried?
A: I've done eventing, hunt seat equitation, and dressage. The only other discipline I'd like to try is endurance!

Q: Is there something you won't do with your horse?
A: I'm lucky. My horse is a model citizen, and we know each other like an old married couple. There isn't much I wouldn't do with him. The only things I absolutely wouldn't attempt with him is jumping at a high level, due to his arthritis. That's just not fair for him.

Q: Favorite barn snack?
A: Licorice! Seriously, though. I've been known to bring a whole bag of licorice and a thermos of tea to sit and audit clinics. Otherwise? String cheese and an apple to split with Pig.

Q: Do you have a guilty pleasure?
A: Oooh boy. My guilty pleasure? Watching the Biggest Loser and eating ice cream/popcorn/mac and cheese. It's delightful ... and makes me a terrible person, I'm sure.

Q: What's your favorite brand of potato chips?
A: Huh, I don't actually eat potato chips enough to answer this. I can tell you that my favorite brand of black licorice is Rj's, and my favorite strawberry licorice is Darell Lee. Does that count? If not, whatever brand of chip makes a salt and vinegar chip.

Q: Do you prefer "fancy" breeches, or just plain jane?
A: I know I've mentioned my frugality before, so I'm sure it won't come as a surprise that I'm a connoisseur of the clearance section breech. I'm a fan of a full seat breech, but that's about where my preference ends. If it's cheap and in my size, I'll probably buy it!

Now, some of my favorite blogs!
1. Jen of Cobjockey
4. Katherine of Greybrook Eventing
5. Kelly of Dressage Pony
7. Andrea of Project Runaway (formerly Eventing-a-Gogo)
10. Finally, Victoria who is completely hilariously Restoring her 1890's Victorian, no horses involved.


  1. hahaha, I love your guilty pleasure! So bad. :P

  2. Thanks for the shout out for my blog! I am always on the look out for a post by you and to see what Guinness is up to :) And thanks for recommending my new favorite 'house' blog - Victoria's blog is great!

    1. Yay! I've been enjoying (read: drooling all over my shirt) your posts of Lexington's beauty!

  3. I would get a MFA and teach creative writing if I could win the lottery, or something - I like work too!

  4. So much fun to read! Mac and Cheese is one of my favorite things to eat at an over-night horse show (I camp in my trailer). It's the only time I allow myself to eat that kind of crappy food. And when I make it at a show, I eat the WHOLE box by myself. :0)

    Regarding OCD - I think everyone who does dressage must have at least some tendencies. How else could repeatedly riding 20 meter circles be considered engaging? :0)

    1. What a wonderful treat for horse shows, though! I eat mac and cheese way more often than I should. In fact, I'll probably make a big batch of it this weekend!


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