HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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I don’t do resolutions.  The moment I declare something out loud like, “I’m going to get in shape,” is the moment I turn to a package of Oreos and a bottle of wine, so I just don’t put myself through it.  I don’t know if I believe in such a grand gesture.  If you really want to change, or make a big difference, why wait until a significant date?  Why not start today, now?  Why does it have to be a big thing?  Why not little things, whenever you can, as often as you’re able?

 

I do however, believe in Gandhi’s quote, “be the change you want to see in the world.”  So, in my own way, on my own schedule, I do make an effort to improve myself and the world I live in.  Volunteering on projects supporting our Veterans will always top my list, but things like, picking up trash, or reaching out to a friend can be just as meaningful and valuable.  Do something good, without posting about it on social media.  Do it quietly, just for you.  I think sometimes we can forget how nice it feels doing the right thing, and celebrating privately.

 

So that’s my New Year message.  Don’t feel obligated to make a big production of “resolving” anything, just try to do and be a little bit better than you did last year.  See how it makes you feel, you might be surprised.

 

Have a safe and happy celebration, until 2018…

 

xo

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MARK YOUR CALENDAR

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In the fall of this year it was announced that the Tryon International Equestrian Center in North Carolina, would host the FEI World Equestrian Games, September 11-23 of 2018.  The Carolinas are lovely in late summer/early fall, why not book your travel now for a little horsing on the east coast?

 

 

Over the years, the FEI has expanded their competitive base to welcome additional events to their roster.  Expect to see the usual suspects, Jumping, Dressage and Endurance…

 

 

 

… as well as some newer kids on the block, like Para-Equestrian Dressage (the discipline practiced by athletes with physical disabilities), Driving Four-in-Hand, Reining and Vaulting.

 

    

 

The FEI World Equestrian Games serves as a qualifying event during Olympic years, so you’re guaranteed to see the absolute best in the individual disciplines and the world.  Tickets are on sale now.  Individual day passes are already sold out, but you can still purchase ticket packages for specific disciplines, week one or two, or an entire show pass, here:  https://tryon2018.com/directory/List/type/351  In addition to spectacular displays of horsemanship and athleticism, there will be vendors and special events throughout the games.

 

For more information, go to the official website:  http://inside.fei.org/fei/fei-weg/2018

 

 

 

SADDLING UP WITH THE ROYALS

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It’s no secret that HRH Queen Elizabeth II loves a pleasant hack around the grounds of Windsor Castle on her favorite Fell Pony.  She was spotted recently, at the age of 91, accompanied by head groom Terry Pendry.  Being an equestrian is as natural to her as being a royal, and it runs in the family.  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-5144375/The-Queen-91-horse-riding-near-Windsor-Castle.html

 

 

Horses and riding is a family tradition, as well as a bit of an unwritten rules for those of royal blood.  Queen Elizabeth and her husband, Prince Philip have been known for their love and riding and horses for as long as history has shown, and they clearly came by their passion from their families.  The tradition carried on through Prince Charles and Sister Anne, the Princess Royal.

 

 

Riding was an familiar activity for both Princess Diana, and Prince Charles’ current wife, The Duchess of Cornwall.  The don’t call it the sport of Kings for nothing.  Every well-bred young woman and man was taught at least the basics of horsemanship from an early age.

 

 

As generations were established, the accepted practice has been passed on in Prince Charles’ boys, William and Harry, as well as their cousin, Princess Anne’s daughter, Zara (Phillips) Tindall.  Both Anne and Zara are champion riders in eventing sports, where William and Harry have adopted a love of polo from their father.

 

 

The collective eye then turns to Duchess Kate, and Prince Harry’s new fiancee, Meghan Markle.  Two women who are well-bred, though not of royal birth, and weren’t raised in the saddle.  Is this where the buck stops?  Fortunately no.  George and Charlotte are already receiving riding lessons, Charlotte showing a passion for it, not unlike her Grandmother, whom she appears to be a miniature version of.  While Kate chooses not to ride, she supports her families desire.  Meghan has been quoted as having an interest in learning the sport of polo, and is often a spectator at Harry’s matches.

 

 

 

Perhaps in spite of their lack of horsey experience growing up, the two of them will take on the new skill together.  It’s always more fun to learn something new, with someone else who’s learning at the same level.