Navigating Change

I actually have a drafted post from late 2022 that recapped 2022 a bit, but I never made it back to publish and now it makes me sad to read through. There were some real highlights in 2022 though, and all my horses had a healthy and happy year.

Blogging has always been something I enjoy, but not always something I can easily make time for so it fell to the side. On top of that, life happened in other sad ways that made it hard for me to have much of anything positive or interesting to say. I know that happens to all of us at some point, just part of life.

We said goodbye to my husband’s grandmother in November. I see her as the most influential person in his life growing up. She’s a big part of why he’s such a great person and husband. On top of that, she was very special to me. From the moment we met she always appreciated my horse crazy ways and accepted me for who I am. Just a great person. I’m very thankful for the time we had together.

Days later, I was kicked by a friend’s horse just trying to walk by with Ernie in the barn aisle after a ride. I was very lucky it wasn’t worse, but I ended up with a hematoma on the inside of my knee that made riding in a saddle impossible for almost two months. Ernie thankfully is a gem and was happy to toodle around bareback with me. There’s still a small lump, seems like maybe it is here to stay.

From there we launched into tax season again, one where I found myself in a new role. I enjoy being more client facing and having more control of how my work is handled, but I really dislike the impact it has had on my hours worked and thus my stress levels. Still trying to figure out how to remedy that.

On March 25th we celebrated Phoenix’s 34th birthday. Some part of me thinks he was just stubborn and proud enough to make sure he made that birthday, because the next evening things started going wrong and he was gone by the 29th. I may try to do a separate post about him later – he certainly deserves one. I know long time readers and anyone going back in the archives will be able to see he was special. <3

Losing Phoenix left such a big hole. He was always larger than life, letting me know what he wanted and seeking me out specifically as his favorite person. The barn at home became so horribly quiet, and on top of that I suddenly had so much less to do. No mashes, no chopping hay, no filling his hay feeder, no worrying about making sure he had the right layers to keep him comfortable in the cold (he had trouble staying warm). I had done those things for years and would come upon the times to do them only to be met with the reminder of loss again.

In the immediate aftermath I went and grabbed Ernie so Vinny wouldn’t be alone. It was still tax season anyway, so it took some stress off me regarding riding Ernie and it made me feel a little better to have both my remaining boys close. Plus it gave me a chance to plan for a new buddy for Vinny instead of rushing.

Ultimately, Ernie’s former best pasture buddy and my friend’s horse Zee came to live at Morstone Acres. Ernie and Zee got to have a reunion for a couple hours before I took Ernie back to the boarding barn, which they greatly enjoyed. They are going to be happy when Ernie has his post show season vacation.

It took some time for Vinny and Zee to bond, but they get along quite well. Vinny has enjoyed having a playmate closer to his age who is interested in running around sometimes. Much to Zee’s dismay, Vinny has zero understanding of how the bitey face game works. After a few weeks of training attempts, Zee had to give up on the idea. We will see if that makes a comeback in the winter.

Ernie and I have had a pretty laid back 2023 so far, although show season is ramping up shortly. We got some great trail rides in before it got hot and buggy, and have enjoyed a lot of time together. My favorite part of going to away shows is how much time we get to spend together while he grazes or we hang out at the stall.

Hopefully more to come, trying to get back on the bandwagon!



  1. CobJockey

    I am so glad to see you still occasionally blogging. My relationship with it has changed too, and it’s okay. I had no idea about your kick, I’m so sorry! What an awful thing to deal with. I miss seeing you on my work trips!

    1. stampyandthebrain (Post author)

      I would definitely love to meet up sometime, but it was certainly easier when your work brought you out this way. I’ve been considering not Rolex next year but would need to find someone to stay with.

  2. Stacie Seidman

    So happy to see a post from you! I’m sorry for all of the hard times. But it sounds like things are falling back into place somewhat. I hope your knee feels better soon. Knee injuries are the worst!

    1. stampyandthebrain (Post author)

      I always enjoy your weekly posts and following along. My mom broke her leg since I posted this so adventures continue! Thankfully surgery is done and she’s back home although non weight bearing for some time. I think I might just always have a small knot from the kick, we will see.

  3. Teresa

    Life can get pretty hectic at times. And changes can come so fast. I’m glad for the update.

    1. stampyandthebrain (Post author)

      You are right about that, always changing.

  4. martidoll123

    Missed your blog postings but follow you on Facebook so don’t feel too deprived! But still, hope you and Ernie (and Zee and Vinny) have a wonderful summer!!

    1. stampyandthebrain (Post author)

      Instagram gets the most posts followed by Facebook, so you definitely keep up on a lot. 🙂 I hope you and your family have a great rest of summer as well!


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