Monday, June 24, 2013

Liebster Award

Being new to the whole blogging world I was very surprised and excited to have three people recognize me for the Liebster Award in the last week (I had to look that up, by the way, had no clue what it was).

The Liebster Blog Award is a way to recognize blogs who have less than 200 followers. Liebster is a German word that means beloved and valued. Here are the rules for accepting the award:
  1.     Thank the person who nominated you and include a link back to their blog.
  2.     List 11 random facts about yourself.
  3.     Answer the 11 questions given to you.
  4.     Create 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate.
  5.     Choose 11 bloggers with 200 or fewer followers to nominate and include links to their blogs.
  6.     Go to each blogger's page and let them know you have nominated them.

When I started this blog I honestly figured it would probably just end up being a good memoir for me, something to look back on and track my progress, see where we "once were" vs where we end up, something my family and friends could use to keep track of what's going on in my life. To have regular followers wasn't even in my realm of thinking. So thank you, everyone, especially Syd, Katie and Amanda for nominating me :) Here are my answers to your questions:

11 Random Facts about me

1. I grew up in Amish Country
2. I can sing every lyric, start to finish, of "Baby Got Back"
3. In my first rated horse show (when I was a kid) I jumped an oxer backward in the schooling ring
4. I have an undergraduate degree in neuroscience
5. Three years ago I traveled across Ireland with my boyfriend, Dan, and it was amazing!
6. I have a birthmark in the shape of Africa on the back of my left hand
7. Matt Damon is my #1 celebrity crush
8. I once was riding in a mine near my house and got caught in quicksand. One of the scariest moments of my life.
9. If I could have any superpower it would be telekinesis, hands down
10. One of my favorite childhood movies is "Homeward Bound." I still cry every time.
11. When I was little my favorite animal was a cow

Questions from Syd (

1. How long have you been riding for?
     18 years
2. Favorite Breed?
3. Ever ridden Western?
     Yes. Although I've never technically been trained in it I used to ride Western fairly regularly
     and really appreciate it for certain things (like trail rides). Not for jumping though. That hurts.
4. Favorite Book?
     Oh gosh, this is a hard one, but I think I'd have to say the "Outlander" series by Diana Gabaldon.
     Although it's more than one book, they are some of the best I've ever read .
5. Slow Horse or Fast Horse?
     No question. FAST.
6. Longest Horse You've Ever Own?
     Charlie is my first. So, what is that, just under 8 months now?
7. Favorite Store to Shop in?
     TJ Maxx/Marshalls/HomeGoods. I love those stores!
8. Favorite Horsey Memory?
     Again, hard to pick just one but I used to ride an amazing TB named Gypsy who was bred for racing but never made it to the track due to an injury as a foal. She was one of those once-in-a-lifetime horses, the kind that I really connected with and with whom I felt as one. Genuinely smart, talented....I remember one time trying to see how fast she could go so I decided to let her out a bit into a hand gallop while out on the trail. We shot forward but I still was reining her in quite a bit. So then I decided to drop the reins and she kicked it up another notch. Crazy! We were flying by then, tears in my eyes from the wind, but I figured let's see what she's got so I leaned forward, hands at her ears and gave the slightest squeeze with my legs and she almost threw me backward in the sudden forward momentum as she kicked it into her highest gear. I have never before, and never since, felt that on a horse and it was the most fantastic feeling in the world. It was exhilarating.
9. If you could buy any other horse what kind would it be?
      If it wasn't a pure TB I would go for a TB/draft cross.
10. Show for the rest of your life or trail ride?
     Trail ride. There is not much better in life.
11. Favorite Quote?
     "Horses see us for who we truly are behind our masks of words and hidden meanings. they become privy to what we try to hide from ourselves and other humans: our frustrations, irritations, dissatisfaction, aggravations, and at the base of it, our fears." - Stormy May

Questions from Katie (

1. What's the name of your heart horse?
     As much as I love Charlie, Juan Carlos (a TB/Belgian cross that I helped train several years ago
     for a good friend of mine) has always been my #1 man. Gypsy. though, was my top horse of all
2. Half chaps or tall boots?
     Half chaps
3. Favorite vacation spot?
     Kiawah Island, SC
4. How long have you been riding?
     18 years
5. Do you have any other pets?
     A lab mix, Emma
     A cat, Charlie (yes, I have two animals named Charlie)
     Two corn snakes
6. What was the last book you read?
     The Hour I First Believed, by Wally Lamb
7. What is your favorite movie?
     Hmm, maybe Princess Bride? That's probably been the longest running on my "favorites" list
8. What's the one thing your horse does that irritates the heck out of you?
     Rearing, although hopefully that's a thing of the past
9. Do you like to cook?
10. What will your next big horsey purchase be?
     A new saddle
11. What song are you embarrassed to admit you love?
     "Everybody (Backstreet's Back)" by the Backstreet Boys

Questions from Amanda (

1) Why did you start blogging?
     As a personal memoir and way to look back on how far (hopefully) I come with Charlie
2) If you could be anyone for a day, who would you be?
     It would be pretty darn cool to be Reed Kessler for a day
3) You have just won the lottery. What is the absolute first thing you do once you find out?
     After almost dying of a heart attack I think I would immediately call out of work and then go crack
     open whatever wine/champagne/beer I could find in the house and celebrate!
4) How old were you when you saw your first horse?
     Probably less than a week old. I grew up in Amish country so we probably passed about 50 on my
     ride home from the hospital. Other than that I can't remember a specific age; horses have always
     kinda been around in some form or another.
5) What is your biggest horse related fear?
      That something tragic and devastating will happen that I have no control over and that will force
     me to make some very difficult decisions.
6) Do you participate in sports outside of the horse world?
7) What song would be played first on the soundtrack for your life?
     "Cowboy Take Me Away" - Dixie Chicks
8) Do you consider yourself a lucky person?
     Yes and no. I've been blessed with a lot of talents that I am very lucky to have but I'm not lucky in the sense of winning contests and things. I think we all make our own luck and we have to have the guts and vision to see potential opportunities and go for them. Luck is all in your perspective. 
9) What is one thing you'd change about your current horse?
     Make his head either a little bigger or a little smaller so he would actually fit into a normal sized bridle. Right now he's either on the biggest end of Horse Size or the smallest end of Oversized so everything is kind of pieced together.
10) What kind of car do you drive? What kind of car do you WISH you drove?
     A Mazda Protege5. I wish I had a Porsche 911 Carrera 4S. (That would be one of my first purchases after winning the lottery)
11) Who is your go-to person when you need horse related advice?
     Usually Kate T. (lucysquest)

As for my own nominations, I don't know too many other qualifying blogs onto whom I can pass along the Liebster Award but here are a few of my favorites that I would nominate if I could (and some questions for you if you feel like participating just for fun) :)
  • "I is Roxie" ( Whenever I need a pick-me-up, this blog always makes me smile :)
  • "Lucy's Quest" ( Kate, I know you have too many followers to qualify but I love reading your blog
  • "Love Me In Focus" ( Amanda, you are an engaging writer and I feel like I'm right there with you when I read about you and Image. I enjoy every moment of your blog. I know you are going through some really tough stuff right now but keep your chin up!
My Questions for You:
1. What was your favorite horsey book as a child?
2. Where is the farthest away from home you've ever traveled?
3. Have you ever been on a horsey vacation? If so where? If not, where would be your #1 pick?
4. JT or JTT (and if you don't know what I'm referring to, I am very disappointed)?
5. How did you come to meet your current horse?
6. Why did you start blogging?
7. What is your guilty pleasure TV show?
8. If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
9. Favorite Queen song?
10. Beer or wine?
11. If you could have any breed of dog what would it be?
12. What was the name of the first horse/pony you ever rode?


  1. I've been riding for 18 years and my name is also Lauren, haha

  2. Aw shucks :) Thanks for the kind words -- needed to hear them right now. Hope to get to spend some more time playing with you guys in RI this summer!

  3. 1. What was your favorite horsey book as a child?
    The Black Stallion's Blood Bay Colt

    2. Where is the farthest away from home you've ever traveled?
    I was born in Poland :)

    3. Have you ever been on a horsey vacation? If so where? If not, where would be your #1 pick?
    I have not. My number one pick would have to be the African horseback safaris!

    4. JT or JTT (and if you don't know what I'm referring to, I am very disappointed)?
    Neither one does it for me, but if you held my head under water until I picked one... JTT.

    5. How did you come to meet your current horse?
    I have known Ozzy since he was a yearling. I worked with him at the track, then kept him when he didn't make it as a racehorse.
    JR came to me as a problem horse for training and never went home.
    Dancer was a giveaway from a friend of a client.

    6. Why did you start blogging?
    To keep in touch with people when I went off to college. My purpose has changed drastically since then.

    7. What is your guilty pleasure TV show?
    Heartland and The Secret Circle

    8. If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
    The power to stop time.

    9. Favorite Queen song?
    Bohemian Rhapsody

    10. Beer or wine?

    11. If you could have any breed of dog what would it be?
    Great Dane!

    12. What was the name of the first horse/pony you ever rode?
    I honestly don't remember. It was a big black horse at a Christmas tree farm.