Wednesday 28 February 2018


Considering its the last day of a month where I have been terrible at blogging, here is a summary of my February:

Temperatures: -37C to 3C
There were only 2 days above freezing and most days had significant wind chills as well.
Yesterday was my warmest ride all month, I actually got to wear my real riding boots instead of my winter clunkers, but it was still cold enough that my phone battery died halfway through videoing my lesson.

Snowfall: 23cm
Adding to the snow from January and with drifts significantly deeper (which is why I gape with astonishment at all blog pictures showing outside riding)

Riding Lessons: 7
This was the month that Elaine was here for extended training (well technically Jan 26-Feb 27). I was scheduled for 8 lessons, 2 got cancelled due to extreme cold but I was able to squeeze in one extra at the end. I will post about these in more detail plus I actually have some media!

Days Out of the Country: 10
I haven't talked about this because it was a trip of mixed emotions and I didn't know what to say. Months ago 2 friends and I planned a 5 day trip to go and see a mutual friend of ours who is living in London, England. However, a week before the London trip, my aunt who lives in Ireland suddenly and unexpectedly died. I made a last minute change to my flight to get to Dublin and be with my family and be there for the funeral, but afterwards I still got myself to London to meet up with my friends. I'm grateful I was able to be in both places, but the juxtaposition of family and friends, happy and sad, Dublin and London, put me in a weird place that I'm still trying to sort through.

New Bosses: 1
My department at work is supposed to be 4 people (including supervisor). Between August and December we had one person quit and two people go on medical leave, leaving just myself. A new head of the department was finally hired which is probably (hopefully?) a good thing, but it's been an adjustment and is adding complications to an already busy time at work.

Here's hoping for a warmer and less complicated March!

Monday 26 February 2018

Blog Hop: 30 Things You Might Not Know About Me

1. I love to travel, I have been to 20 countries so far and would love to expand that list.

2. My life goal is to be multi-lingual but I am terrible at learning languages. It took my friend several days to teach me how to properly count to 10 in Mandarin (tonal languages are hard yo!). I content myself with being able to belt out super random phrases in random languages, including: "watch out speedbump", "I have a flat tire", "My family looks like hobbits", "You are a cabbage head" in Dutch, German, Irish, and ASL respectively.

3. I keep detailed excel spreadsheets on lots of things from budgeting to horse shows to vacation plans.

4. Three years after finishing university I landed the type of job that I thought it would take half my career to get. I'm mostly appreciative of my job but part of me is sad that I got here too soon. I know I would be stupid to leave this position but I kind of wish I had experienced more before getting here, even if that included experiencing unemployment or jobs that had nothing to do with my field.

5. I'm not naturally talented at sports or music or anything like that, the number one thing comes easily to me is helping people through donating blood. I am a universal donor with O neg blood, I am CMV negative so they can give my blood to pregnant women and babies, my veins are easy to find, and I bleed fast. I've been donating blood since I turned 17 and I love feeling like I am making a difference.

6. I played the baritone in high school band.

7. My older sister died suddenly when she was walking across the street at a cross walk and a bus driver made an illegal turn and ran over her. She was 28 at the time, younger than I am now. My family has never been the same.

8. I have a fabulous gay brother-in-law who is a pastry chef and makes the most beautiful and delicious desserts.

9. I have an obsession with antique furniture. My house kind of looks like it is owned by a 90 year old but I love solid wood and ornate details. It makes me sad that so few people have appreciation for these pieces anymore but I will still take advantage of the cheap used prices.

10. If you buy a beautiful old piece of wood furniture and chalk paint it just to resell I will curse your name and your kijiji ad.

11. My 3 best friends live 800km, 3000km, and 7000km away respectively.

12. I am helping a friend to edit her first novel.

13. Growing up I would always have to immediately change clothes and shower as soon as I got home from the barn because my Dad, brother and sister all had varying allergies to cats and horses.

14. My old car broke down when I was in another city for a conference. I got it towed to the nearest dealership and once they gave me the bad news that it was dead dead (transmission was toast, wasn't worth the $8000 repair on a 20 year old car), I nonchalantly walked out of the service door, into the sales door and played it cool negotiating a good deal on a new car. I never revealed my desperation until after the ink was dry. (I legit had to buy a car that day so I could get home and make it to work the next day, but while I never technically lied, I didn't mention the broken car and played it off like I was just visiting the big city to look at cars as a possible upgrade)

15. My last job was as an oilfield tank inspector and we went to some crazy remote areas. We once drove 18 hours each way (last 2 hours were on ice roads through muskeg) to spend 1 hour inspecting 1 small tank.

16. My brother is a way cooler person than I will ever be.

17. Riding has been my most constant sport throughout my life (21 years and still going strong), but I also did Taekwon-do for 4 years, rugby for 9 years, and I'm going into my 5th year of dragonboating

18. I was bullied terribly in Junior High School, both physically and emotionally.

19. Procrastination is my biggest fault.

20. I was valedictorian of my high school.

21. I have gone parasailing, paragliding, and gliding, but bungee jumping and skydiving are still on my bucket list.

22. I cannot stand the taste of coffee.

23. Until 6 years ago I thought I was completely healthy and allergy-free, but since then I have discovered a minor cat allergy, a major penicillin allergy, and I was diagnosed with celiac disease.

24. My picture has been in the New York Times.

25. I am a Harry Potter nerd.

26. I learned calligraphy this year in order to address wedding invitations and I think it will become a new hobby.

27. I can hold my alcohol really well. I don't drink often but I can out-drink most people I meet and I don't get hangovers.

28. I can't currently sing but I want to learn.

29. My bedroom/closet is almost always untidy (I do laundry regularly, I just don't really ever put it away).

30. I once did an 11 day backpacking trip through Banff National Park, covering around 130 km while carrying a 75 pound pack and tackling 5+ mountain passes and multiple river crossings. It was a super intense experience that pushed me to my limits mentally and physically, but it left me with amazing memories and I'm still really proud of accomplishing it. 

Wednesday 21 February 2018

WW: Charlotte Dujardin

I already have my ticket to audit and I'm excited!