Archive for April, 2010

Riding, The Girls and the Best Birthday EVER!!

April 22, 2010

What an amazing month April has turned out to be so far!

The past few weeks have been scattered with the usual excitement so I’ll recap the highlights in case anyone is interested in reading about my oh-so-wonderful life.

My best friend EJ and I celebrated our 4-year anniversary of knowing each other on April 7th so we wanted to do special something that weekend. We decided to do dinner at this great noodle cafe that we love, Doc Chey’s with the boys as our “dates”. Then we headed over to Fernbank for the Martinis & Imax thing that they do on Friday nights. I went with Erik when we first started dating and it was a blast – they have a bar set up, a band playing and it’s really lovely. The Imax that we saw was the about the history and culture of cowboys around the world so of course it featured lots of cute ponies for EJ and I to squeal over – what a perfect night!

I also turned 26 on April 17th. Usually my birthday is pretty awful and I wind up miserable but this year my amazing boyfriend and best friends decided that wasn’t allowed to happen. Erik, EJ, Alyssa and Sarah all plotted together to surprise me with the best weekend ever! Friday I had off from work, slept in and woke up ready for fun. EJ came and kidnapped me and drove to the airport for part 1 of my surprise. Who was there? Alyssa and Sarah! They had flown in from PA and MD just for the weekend!

Friday night they took me out for a pre-birthday dinner celebration. We got dressed up fancy and I even was given a special “birthday princess” tiara to wear all weekend, yay! We went to the Cheesecake Factory because that place is very yum with about 12 friends and had a great time. There were several other birthdays happening so by the time the servers came to sing to me it had been decided that everyone would out-sing everyone else and oh yes, they did. I felt special. 🙂

Me, Sarah, EJ and Alyssa celebrating on Friday night

Saturday morning Erik (in conjunction with The Girls) had planned part 2 of my surprise and I had to wake up at 6:30am for it! I am not a morning person so of course I wasn’t thrilled about getting up early on my birthday but they all promised me that it would be worth it. Erik packed a special bag full of stuff I would need and we drove for over an hour. As we got closer he had me close my eyes but I got excited because I could “smell horses” and when we finally arrived I found that we were at the beautiful Southern Cross Guest Ranch in Madison, GA. He had booked us for a half-day which included a 2-hour trail ride, use of the facilities and lunch.

The ranch has 250+ horses on the property, mostly Quarter Horses, Paints and Appaloosas. The facilities are absolutely gorgeous and you can see horses running in the pastures from anywhere on the property. Our trail ride was just Erik and I along with one other guest and our great guide, Abby. We did a lot of cantering/galloping and I was very proud of Erik for not only surviving, but not whining at all – he hadn’t been on a horse in over a year! After the ride we lounged by the pool and dipped our legs before enjoying a delicious home-cooked lunch and driving home.

When we got to the house it was quickly evident that The Girls had been busy decorating for the party they decided I should have. The theme was “pink pirate” and was super cute! We had about 20 people over, played some rock band, smashed a skull-shaped pinata, played pin the treasure chest on the pirate map and partied it up. Mission: Happy Birthday was a success!

Sarah, EJ, Alyssa and I with some of the cute pink pirate party decorations!

A trip to Atlanta isn’t complete without a visit to Waffle House so Sunday morning we headed over there for lunch before driving The Girls back to the airport. I was bummed that the weekend was over but so thankful for having such incredible people around me.

Meanwhile, my trainer had called and wanted me to come ride Toby for my birthday present. How could I resist? Erik and I drove straight to the barn after stopping at the airport and I got to snuggle my pony. After a warm up, I worked him (Toby, not Erik, LOL) over some jumps and just enjoyed being with my boys. I rode for about 45 minutes before finally giving up because I was just so pooped from the overabundance of fun!

I am SO lucky to have such amazing friends in my life; I love you all more than anything ❤ BEST. BIRTHDAY. EVER!!!

Monday Erik presented at IgniteATL so I went to watch him speak. There were some very interesting topics covered and I was proud that he did well.

Tuesday I went back to Huntcliff for my lesson, spent an hour grooming and snuggling Toby only to find that he had a stone bruise on his hoof and was lame so I couldn’t ride him. I quickly saddled up another horse, Halo, who is an adorable draft-cross. Halfway through the lesson I switched horses with the lady I ride with and got to ride her lovely Andalusian/Appaloosa mare. As much fun as I had riding two new-to-me horses, I missed Toby terribly and can’t wait to see him next week!

Me and Toby jumping – I love this pony!!

We’ve also been house shopping lately. We decided that given the current market, it makes sense that we should at least look around to see if we could get something bigger/nicer and/or in a better school district than what we have now for around what we’re already paying. We saw one house yesterday which was huge and beautiful but the lot was too slope-y and the driveway too small. Keep your fingers crossed for us!