"If the world were merely seductive, that would be easy. If it were merely challenging, that would be no problem. But I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day." — E.B. White

Monday, November 19, 2012


Sarah on Piglet, Leslie on Charlie, Jack on Merit
Yesterday was awesome.
I finally got out foxhunting with my kids and two dear friends n students.
As many of you know, I have been dreaming of this for years.
Some of you may not know that training horses and riders for this (and more) has been my business for nearly 30 years. I got a bit burned out and took a break, started a family and recharged my enthusiasm.
My enthusiasm is sky high again!
(I'd still give it all up for my family tho. No contest.)
The hunting day was picture perfect, despite the required tears n drama.
Nerves were frayed at first.
Fun was remembered most.

We recently joined Carrollton Hounds and can't say enough about how much we admire their club and people. I've hunted with many wonderful clubs and must say that foxhunters are always welcoming and encouraging. I think it's a real shame that so many believe that this sport is for the rich and snooty. That's a terrible misconception. But Carrollton folk have an extra special gift for making everybody feel at ease and helping in every single way to make "foxchasing" fun.
Plus they fed us really, really well!
Bacon encrusted with walnuts and brown sugar was the bomb.
Must search Pinterest for a recipe.

Today was an "open hunt" where any and all who ride and want to learn about foxhunting were welcome. The staff and members gave a lecture on foxhunting's history and protocol before we set out. For those who don't know, foxes are almost never ever killed. They are followed by scent (not sight) hounds and easily evade the hounds. In Maryland we're now calling it foxchasing due to that fact.
The fox leads us on a merry chase, often pausing to watch hounds struggle to figure out his path. We were so blessed to have two amazing views of the fox way out ahead of the hounds!

Diane and Shannon (and their horses) had never been foxhunting before. They were superstars! 
Both say they want to join the club now!!!

 My big new mare "Charlie" made it fun but not dull. The slow pace was just what she needed to remember foxhunting is not all galloping and jumping like fools. (Often I think this is the way it's shown in movies etc.) There's lots of standing around watching the hounds try to pick up a scent and soaking in the overwhelming beauty.
 Sarah did an outstanding job on "Piggy" as he leapt about, unsure of how to deal with climbing banks and crossing ditches... I was so proud that she didn't quit!

 No doubt about it, Jack was the star of the day in our group. He was pretty reluctant at the start, but the first to lead the way through creeks and brush by hunts end. HIs pony Merit was perfect. He didn't want to get off Merit and even asked if he could go to the beautiful buffet in the barn riding her. Many people went out of their way to encourage him or just ask to take his picture. At six years old, he was the youngest there. That's a big draw about foxchasing... It's super family friendly and you'll see tiny tots on leadlines and eighty year olds (who maybe should be?) with all ages, and backgrounds joining in!
Jack so relaxed at one of the checks that he's showing off how he "sleeps" on his pony!

By days end we were all very mellow (exhausted).

And I really can't end without thanking my awesome Mother in Law!!! The Farmer couldn't join us but his mom filled in and assisted with all things horsey, family and took all these pics. She used to be afraid of horses but has come a long way and I'm dreaming of her riding beside us next!

We're all looking forward to getting out again very soon!


Lisa Tucker said...

wow...looked like an awesome day! The pic with everyone on the horses and all the dogs looks like a painting! Thanks for sharing!

Janette's Sage/Simply Your Decor said...

This made my day...I have never seen this sport just what I have seen on Disney movies..LOL This is great! I am sharing it with Benjamin this morning...how awesome.

The other thing is that you are fulfilling your dream and each time you mention that, the Lord pulls on my heart...He isn't finished with me yet and my dream hasn't been started, there is still time! Thanks for always inspiring me with a nudge to walk out my dream and also inspiring me in your mothering.

Great, great pictures!!!!

Lori O'Brien Photography said...

I'm SO Happy for you!!!! Just LOVED this post! What an amazing childhood you are MAKING for Jack and Sarah! Experiences most families only dream of! They are so very lucky to have YOU as their MOM! Their daddy must be so proud of his talented and hardworking wife and kids!!!

You all look FABULOUS!
Hopefully this is a family event that will continue lifelong. ALL of you will cherish these photos and the memory of their first Hunt with their mom.

So envious of your clients...wishing my family could trot next to yours. sniff, sniff.



Vintage Country Girl said...

What a fun time. I've only ever seen this in movies. Sounds exciting and "Ritzy!" :-) Glad you all had a great time. Love all the outfits too. Just like the movies!

brooke said...

Amazing! I tried to comment before but it wouldn't let me do it from work. This looks like a dream come true. Makes me want to saddle up.

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