I remember the first time I ever rode Petunia.
It was at last June’s FCHJA show. My trainer had already ridden her in several over fences classes, it was brutally hot, and she asked if I’d ride her in the flat class. I quickly said yes, since I’d be drooling over the majestic bay mare ever since I first laid eyes on her. Next thing I knew, I was getting a leg up and walking into the ring. Didn’t even have a chance to get acclimated to her in the schooling ring. Talk about a catch ride.
Needless to say, it didn’t go well.
Nothing catastrophic happened, but she was a much more complicated ride than I’d anticipated and I could barely canter her in a straight line without her wiggling or swapping her lead. I was a little deflated. I’d had visions of blue ribbons on her from the get-go.
At the end of February, I left my beloved Riverside and decided to live in sin with my wonderful boyfriend.
With a new neighborhood comes a new restaurant scene. And in this case, I’m now living in the land of chain restaurants (the horror!). But don’t worry – I haven’t given in (unless you count Capital Grille, which I don’t).
When I started riding again earlier this year, I knew it wouldn’t be long until all of my free time was dedicated to horses again. In September, I started half-leasing this amazing mare named Petunia from my trainer. She’s a 6-year-old, 17.1H Oldenburg mare (I know – that’s a foreign language to some of you) with a plethora of potential (say that three times fast!) and an amazing temperament. It was sort of a win-win situation: Petunia needed more attention. I wanted to ride more. And we both needed consistency.
Naturally, I immediately began spoiling her rotten.
Have you ever had the urge to get in the car and drive an hour for some BBQ you read about in Garden and Gun?
Well, that’s exactly what happened this past Sunday. My friend Lauren and I were chatting about breakfast plans when she sent me a screenshot of Garden and Gun’s write up about Southern Soul Barbeque in St. Simons Island, GA. Since it’s only 60 miles away, we hopped in my car and went for a drive.
I have a quarterly girl’s night dinner with three of my fantastic friends, and this quarter’s just happened to fall on the opening week of Sbraga & Co. – the new restaurant from Chef Kevin Sbraga (you might remember him from Top Chef) at Unity Plaza.
We started off the meal with the bread board. The salted butter and fennel jam accompanied pretzel bites, corn bread, whole grain bread (made with grains from Intuition!), and last but very not least – the best fucking biscuit I have ever tasted. All four of us may have ordered extra biscuits to-go, but that can’t be confirmed since all evidence has been destroyed.
You know what’s fun?
Leaving the show ring behind and heading out to the woods for some cross country schooling.
A couple of weekends ago, I joined some of the girls from the barn and we headed out to FloridaSun Farms in Hawthorne for some schooling over their cross country course. FloridaSun Farms is a beautiful property that’s home to Dimar Caspians and The Church Barn (gorgeous wedding venue if you’re looking!).