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  • Writer's pictureOllie Ratcliffe

December Blog

Firstly I hope you all had a great Christmas and wishing you all a Very Happy New Year.

The snow that most of us experience at the beginning of the month put a stop to things! The boys were very grateful for their nice warm stables and enjoyed a few stable days. The fields were covered with snow and ice so it was too slippery for them to go out; unfortunately the school and gallops were also not safe to use so the boys had a week’s holiday which they loved.

I was in hospital for a planned admission so once the snow had cleared Alice rode the boys for me and kept them ticking over. Thankfully the week flew by and before long I was out and back at the stable where I belong.

So not much to report on the riding front; I did get a few sessions in and both boys are going super and I am really looking forward to next year.

We have just got back from an incredible two weeks in America visiting my sister, her husband and my niece. It was our first time meeting Lily (my niece) and I am very excited to be an auntie. It was extremely cold in America; experiencing -35 Celsius meant that we spent a lot of time inside by the fire. On the few occasions we did go outside this was just to get into the car and then out of the car and into a building, but we were all wrapped up warm.

This meant we had lots of time to do some cooking in preparation for Christmas day, so we made a Christmas cake, mince pies, a pumpkin pie and built and decorated a ginger bread cottage. It was fantastic to spend some time with my sister; it’s so hard living the other side of the world to each other.

I had a white Christmas which was very special. It was strange being away from home but we did have a chance to face time the rest of the family which was fantastic. I think Lily enjoyed her first Christmas and was spoilt rotten. We had a day which was mixed with American and British traditions, a bit different.

After Christmas day we had a few days where the temperature had gone up but was still in the minus figures; so we ventured outside a bit more and one of these days we went down to the lake which was completely frozen and covered in snow. There were a lot of ice houses that were already on the lake and as it was so frozen it was safe to walk on it. I didn’t enjoy the experience very much but now I can say I have walked on a lake, even if it was with lots of people holding me to keep me upright. Straight after that we went to a café to have a nice warm drink.

It was amazing that they had fair bit of snow fall when we were over there but it never affected anyone as all the roads were cleared to allow everyday life to take place. Bit different to over here! I didn’t make any snowman though far too cold for that!

The two weeks flew by and we were back to reality before long but we all had a nice break. I missed the animals a lot so it was great to be back and to see them, my cats are very happy to be home from the cattery and have been very affectionate. The boys were pleased to see us and thank you so much to Alice for keeping them ticking over while we have been away.

I cannot wait to get back on board. Next month looks to be a busy one with lots of training planned as our competitions start again in February. Let’s hope the white stuff stays away!

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