What A Day at DAD!

Pam Murphy new puppy Haylee, Silva on Aesthete, Faye Wolf (Aesthete's owner),
Melinda Walten (Duvent's owner), Donna Day (Ashlea's proud Mom) and Ashlea
Silva, Michael Barisone and Ashlea
It was such an exciting experience to spend the day at Dressage at Devon with Silva, Ashlea and their entire team of fans & owners!  To have the opportunity to watch Silva ride at this level on two such talented young horses was quite a treat.  Add to that the great karma of having her owners present with Michael Barisone coaching both she and Ashlea ringside, rounded out a beautiful fall day.

Aesthete (Stately) sets a high bar with his incredible presence and astonishing gates.  He and Silva made such an perfect pair, with his athletic ability being matched by his phenomenal brain.  He handily won his 6 year old class (final) this morning with a 10 point margin and a score of 87%, and the judge's remarks reflected their level of being impressed.  I think the biggest compliment coming from the European judges included, "Please come to Europe"!  Now how often do we here that stateside?!!

The day continued in the same winning fashion with Silva's Australian student Ashlea Day winning her FEI Young Rider team test aboard CP Perolus with a score of 66.6%, and Duvent winning his 4th level test on a score of 70.5%!  Now the pressure is on to try to maintain this level of performance.

Please enjoy the slideshow and come out to cheer on our team over the weekend!!  The trip to the Devon horse show grounds is well worth the effort.

Smartphone Photo Gallery Link

Off to Holland!

Otis and Remi have embarked on their journey to Holland to compete at The Boekelo CIC3* Three Day Event next weekend. I saw Boyd off to Morven Park early this morning with Thomas, Bo, and a fully packed trailer, while Otis, Remi and I boarded the semi truck headed for JFK airport.

After battling through a morning of NYC traffic on the semi, the horses arrived at the airport in great shape and spent five hours in the quarantine barn, resting up for the big plane ride. Tamra Smith's Mar de Amor and Michael Pollard's DV8 will join Otis and Remi on the journey.

Following the quarantine period, the horses loaded onto a pallet to then be loaded onto the plane. Otis and Remi were experts at the loading process and settled right into their spots, happily munching on hay. They are sharing a pallet with a miniature stud pony, whom Otis has been eying suspiciously all day, not quite sure what to make of him. The good news is that because of the pony's small size, Otis and Remi get a bit more room on the pallet! Stay tuned for photo updates throughout the flight.

The event will officially begin with the first horse inspection on Wednesday at 1:30 pm local time, which is 7:30 am Eastern time. Otis is number 86 and Remi is number 95, which should mean that both of them will do dressage on Friday.

We will keep you posted throughout the week!

-Lindsey Taylor
Head Groom

Alunos das 7ªs séries visitam a APAE

Como culminância do projeto Ajudar da Professora Ione Sauer os alunos das 7ªs séries visitaram a APAE, fazendo a doação das arrecadações das doações e desenvolvendo jogos com eles.

Dressage Daily Update

Aesthete and Silva Martin
Thanks to Dressage Daily for yesterday's update on the day at DAD (full article click here), and to Stacy Lynn for this amazing photo!  Silva has continued to blaze a trail today in the FEI YH Test for 6 year olds (Final) winning her class by a 10 point margin with an 87!!!  I will have more results and 
photos later today.

Dressage at Devon Breed Division Wraps Up as Performance Classes Begin on Day 3

Aesthete and Silva MartinThe individual classes showed off the beauty of 20 breeds including the Warmblood Horse of Trakehner Origin, the German Oldenburg Verband, Morgan, Rheinland Pfalz-Saar International, and even Spanish Mustangs. And the day was not over yet as Dressage at Devon moved into the Performance Division.
Aesthete, by Trento B out of Unusual, took home two blues tonight. The first was the FEI Young Horse Test for 6-Year-Olds, where he scored an impressive 87.200. The second win was in the USEF Fourth Level Test 1 Open. Ridden in both classes by Silva Martin, she also rode Duvent, by De Niro out of Heidekind by Rubinstein in the USEF Fourth Level Test 1.
From Martin’s September 11 blog, “I am very much looking forward to showing Duvent at Devon. Duvent has come such a long way in a very short amount of time. He is a very attractive and very talented horse but he gets worried at times. I have been working very hard to understand him and he has been trying very hard to work with me. I really think we are having a breakthrough and he is getting more and more confident.” Her efforts paid off today.

Two Blues For Stately on the First Day at Devon

Silva and Faye Woolf's Aesthete, by Trento B out of Unusual, took home two blues last night at Dressage at Devon. The first was the FEI Young Horse Test for 6-Year-Olds, where he scored an impressive 87.200. The second win was in the USEF Fourth Level Test 1 Open. Silva also rode Duvent, by De Niro out of Heidekind by Rubinstein in the USEF Fourth Level Test 1.

For a great photo check out DressageDaily.com

The Friday Clive

"Being fallen creatures we tend to resent offences against our taste, at least as much as, or even more than, offences against our conscience or reason...The tendency is easily observed among children; friendship wavers when you discover that a hitherto trusted playmate actually likes prunes. But even for adults it is "sweet, sweet, sweet poison" to feel able to imply "thus saith the Lord" at the end of every expression of our pet aversions. To avoid this horrible danger we must perpetually try to distinguish, however closely they get entwined both by the subtle nature of the facts and by the secret importunity of our passions, those attitudes in a writer which we can honestly and confidently condemn as real evils, and those qualities in his writing which simply annoy and offend us as men of taste. This is difficult, because the latter are often much more obvious and provoke such a very violent response."

Boyd and Neville Awarded Land Rover Grant for Burghley Performance

From the USEF

After a hugely successful early fall campaign for the Land Rover U.S. Eventing Team, six riders will receive Land Rover Performance Grants based on their performance at the 2011 Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials or the 2011 Fidelity Blenheim Palace International Horse Trials.

Boyd Martin led the American effort with the Neville Bardos Syndicate's Neville Bardos at the Burghley CCI4*. The pair finished seventh, earning a $10,000 Land Rover Performance Grant in addition to the $15,000 base grant which they received prior to their trip to the UK as part of the Land Rover Competition and Training Grant initiative. Their $10,000 Land Rover Performance Grant was based on their top 10% finish at a CCI4*.

"It was fantastic gesture for Land Rover to reward Neville with the $10,000 bonus thanks to his top finish at Burghley," said Martin. "A huge international trip like this amounts to thousands of dollars in expenses, and this performance grant will be going directly toward offsetting a lot of the costs for Neville's trip to England. Land Rover has absolutely made my dream of competing at Burghley a reality with their grants."

Boekelo Preview

So this is what we have to look forward to at Boekelo...


Today, during lunch, I attended a presentation on the diversity policy of TU Delft, and here's a quick overview of what struck me most:

- Even though the Netherlands is one of the most progressive and developed countries around, it has among the lowest percentages of female professors in the European Union (Belgium was even one place lower in that ranking).

- There was a lot of information on the Delft Fellowship for female academics, in an attempt to attract talented researched. It's aimed at researchers who have spent a few years in industry or as a post-doc, outside of the TU Delft. And this "outside of the TU Delft" seems to stir quite some discussion (should we give our research positions to foreigners?). And do we even need a fellowship which is only for women?

- Who reaches the top? White, male, Dutch academics who studied at TU Delft.

I still need to think about these issues, put it all into the context of my personal experience, and then I'll have an opinion on it. But as of now, I just find it an interesting topic.

Blackburn Rovers v Manchester City

After a disappointing result in the mid-week Champions League game against Bayern Munich, and the other distractions that created, City will be looking to bounce straight back with a good performance against Blackburn Rovers on Saturday.

Blackburn currently sit in 17th spot in the league with 4 points, 3 of those being gifted to them by 2 Arsenal own goals. Steve Kean has come in for a lot of criticism since taking over from Sam Allardyce and the result against Arsenal may have just give him a little reprieve from the demonstrations calling for him to be sacked. Last weekend's 3-1 loss to Newcastle wont have helped his case though.

The same fixture last season saw City run out 1-0 winners on the day with the solitary goal coming from Edin Dzeko. After his reaction to being subbed on Tuesday though he may find himself starting the game on the bench. This, along with the club's suspension of Carlos Tevez could mean Mario Balotelli gets his first Premiership start of the season.

Balotellit has scored twice in his last two appearances for the club, one against Birmingham in the Carling Cup and one coming off the bench against Everton in the Premier League. By all accounts Mario has been working hard in training to the point where Mancini has praised his attitude in recent club press conferences.  

One positive to come from mid-week was the return of Nigel De Jong and I for one can't wait for him to get back into the swing of things as he is part of the backbone of the squad. This will throw up another problem for Mancini though; Who does he drop from the holding midfield role, Gareth Barry or Yaya Toure? Opinions will be divided over that one I'm sure and it may partly depend on who Mancini decides to play in the left back slot.

There were a few disappointing overall performances on Tuesday and we may see a number of changes made to the squad of Saturday. Once again City came undone with a set piece (which incidentally was offside although you wont find that mentioned anywhere) and the formidable Chris Samba will be one of the players City will need to watch from dead ball situations around the 18 yard box.

Another player that may pose a problem is Ruben Rochina. The Spanish forward joined Blackburn on a 4 year deal from Barcelona last January and has scored 4 goals in his last 6 games in all competitions. Goodwillie and Yakubu make up the rest of Blackburn's striking options.

With teams immediately around City looking likely to win their games it's important that City continue their good Premier League form (tell me you didn't just re-read half of that sentence in Mancini's voice, and if you didn't I bet you have now!). Blackburn have conceded 13 goals in the league so far, 6 of them at home so City should be looking to press home their attacking abilities by hopefully getting a big decent goal difference out of the game at the end of the 90 minutes.


Zack is TWENTY! 

The candles blazed and the family sang off-key, so it is official.

A faithful brother, a hardworking student, a new Verizon employee, a passionate musician, a junior high group leader, a fine man...that is my son.

The cake was delicious (just ask the dog, who ate 3/4 of it!)

We love you, Zack. You are a delight to your family. Blessings to you as you begin this important year of your life.

Action Comics #900 - Pencil and Color

Action Comics #900 - Layouts

FIFA Vice-President Backing City.

I'm pretty sure you're all aware of the latest stunt to be pulled by Tevez by now, and less than 24 hours  has passed before Fifa's vice-president Jim Boyce voiced his own personal views on the situation that City now find themselves in.

When I listened to the interview on SKY Sports I was more than pleasantly surprised at what Boyce had to say as he is wholly in support of Fifa itself taking action against Tevez if Manchester City wish. Jim started the interview stating; "If he has done what has been said, and it appears there is no doubt about it - no matter what has been said this morning - then I think his club would be better off with him not being a part of it."

Tevez released a statement this morning saying exactly what you would expect it to say. He's always professional, he always gives his all, he is ready to play in the future and all this is just a big misunderstanding. This 'misunderstanding' according to Carlos is that he felt he didn't need to warm up any more before taking to the pitch as he felt fine. However Mancini took this as though he refused to play - according to Tevez of course.  

Of course if you rewind back to last night for a moment when Carlos spoke to the press after the game against Bayern he specifically stated that he didn't feel right either physically or mentally to take part in the match and had said this to Mancini. Now correct me if I'm wrong but there is a slight discrepancy there don't you think?

Anyway, back to Jim. After being asked whether the Argentinian's contract should be cancelled, his answer was; "Without a shadow of a doubt." I don't think many people will disagree with him on that one.

What Boyce says next will be music to the ears of fans and indeed managers everywhere. The fear is that if Carlos gets his contract cancelled (like he probably wants) he will be a free agent and may be able to move to any club who will take him almost immediately. If that happened it would pave the way for any player to do exactly the same to engineer a move away from the club they're at without reprisals.

"If Manchester City Football Club prove it, write to Fifa and state the exact circumstances that happened last night then I believe Fifa should have the power, as they do for drugs-related cases and other cases, to ban the player from taking an active part in football."

You can catch the video of the interview here on SKY Sports.

It appears Tevez and his 'advisor' Kia Joorabchian have finally met their match with City, especially as they now appear to have the full backing of football's governing body. Joorabchian is already barred from setting foot in the Etihad Stadium, Mancini wants nothing more to do with Tevez, Sheikh Mansour is reported to be 'very disappointed' about what transpired in Germany, some of Carlos' own teammates and fellow countrymen appeared to blank him during the remainder of the game last night and now to top it off he is suspended until further notice or until City come to an agreement on suitable and legal punishment.

The end is nigh Carlos, the only question that remains is how much will your mistakes now cost your career?



Leonardo Ito’s color sample.
I love his work. His color is perfect on my lines. Good luck my friend.

Carlos Tevez. An utter disgrace.

I've taken a short time to calm down after the revelation by Mancini that Tevez did indeed refuse to come off the bench and play against Bayern Munich.

I'm not going to go into the game as losing the Bayern Munich away from home is no disgrace. What I do have a problem with is the fact that a player refuses to pull on the shirt of the team that pays him upwards of £200k a week and play half an hour of football in one of the biggest games in its recent history. It's absolutely and utterly disgraceful.

Carlos Tevez has tested the patience of City fans and manager to the absolute limit and his latest stunt has pushed it too far. Mancini spoke to Sky Sports after the game and said; "Tevez refused to come onto the pitch.

"I can't accept this one player refusing to go on."

I have already voiced my opinions on Carlos a number of times (you can find all the articles here) and made it quite clear he had a long way to go before regaining any sort of respect from me and indeed many of the City faithful. He has just blown any chance of that out of the water in what is a blatant stunt to get himself out of City, which is what he wanted last December.

The difference this time is that there were no lame excuses about missing his family (as they're now with him) or that he doesn't get on with Garry Cook (who has now gone) or that he has no one in the City he can talk to (Aguero and Zabba both have partners living with them and a number of other teammates speak Spanish). No this time he point blank refuses to play after being asked to come off the bench to try and help his teammates get a result from a game.

The only hint of some sort of reason was that he didn't feel right to play. Really Carlos? Couldn't you have said that before Mancini named you as a sub? Or was it because you were named as a sub?

It's not just a betrayal of the City fans and his manager, it's a betrayal of the players he plays with, his supposed friends. It's quite clear that Mancini has had enough going so far as to specifically say "he is finished" with Carlos and that "he can't play - never" in a very prickly post match press conference.  

What happens now is any one's guess, but Carlos has been given enough chances by everyone at the club. Whether the Chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak decides to fine the player or worse is yet to be seen but a decision needs to be swift and it needs to be decisive. No player at any club should get away with that.

The sad thing is though, Carlos wont care one jot and he has the cheek to say that he has been "professional" whilst at City keeps "trying to do [his] best". The guy is on another planet completely. He will likely get the move he wanted in January and Kia Joorabchian will be pleased because he gets another bit pay day along with the transfer. That is unless City really want to make an example of him and leave him unused and unwanted until the end of the season, and maybe even beyond.

What is clear though, the disruptive influence of an unhappy player is potentially devastating to the harmony in the dressing room. Tevez can not be permitted to poison the friendships that have been nurtured within the club.


When joy is almost gone

As I open my emails, answer my phone, read my mail, I am reminded that many of us are in a season of suffering, surrounded by layers of worry and sorrow, and it is collecting deep within us. Worry takes on different faces for different people, and it never is just one thing:  the banal worries of money and terra firma responsibilities, things like lay offs and mortgage troubles and cars breaking and houses aging. Or the love of husband/wife, parent/child, friend to friend, feeling the stretch of years and choices and needing to forgive...again. And even just living with ourselves, seeing our choices and wishing that just this once we could be nice or flexible or ready for the challenge. And then the life and death worries hit us when we are already down; they wash every single other worry away...for a time. The middle of the night phone calls, the hurried travel to be at the bedside of a dying father or cousin or friend, the hope that the surgery of a spouse will bring good news after the terror of waiting, the crash of time and eternity when we wonder why everything else bogs us down so badly. We continue to get up, make ends meet, fix meals, love children, kiss husbands, but eventually we are left wondering where the joy went.

One day last week, I reached for whatever perfume was on the bathroom counter. I have three bottles that were my mother's, and I spray a mist of memory out every morning, breathe in Mom's fragrance throughout each day. But the bottle I grabbed was almost empty.  The perfume is called JOY.

What do you do when the joy is almost gone?  As someone who believes in God's purposes, who lives for eternity, who knows there is a bigger story being written behind the troubles, I am still human.  And the joy feels depleted right now.

I am curious where YOU go to find joy in troubled times.  What is your wisdom?  Your inspiration?

I know that seasons come and go, but joy must transcend the circumstances.  Happiness can be married to the now and its feelings, but joy needs to be bigger and broader and more connected to eternity.

Joy is not gone...just stretched.  I hope you'll chime in.  I would love to hear your thoughts.  

October & November Clinics with Boyd at CS&W Farm!

Boyd Martin
CS&W Farm
October 18 and 19, 2011
November 19 and 20, 2011
Clinic with the 2010 Horseman of the Year
Boyd is a 4 star eventing competitor that finished 7th overall on the USEA Rider of the year leader board in 2007. He was shortlisted for the Australian Olympic team on two horses, Yin Yang Yo and Neville Bardos. Since becoming a US citizen, Boyd has had great success competitively. He was named Rider of the year by the Chronicle of the Horse and in 2011  is ranked number one on the Nutrena leader board. For more information go to  www.boydandsilvamartin.com
Boyd Martin is one of the best clinician I have ridden with in a long time. People who ride with him feel they and their horses were challenged mentally and physically without being overfaced. Your confidence reaches a new level. He demonstrates imagination in the exercises he teaches. He explains techniques for both stadium and cross country clearly and logically. Both my horses excelled during the class and I have used many suggestions afterwards. This is someone you don’t want to miss riding with.  
Semi privates - $225.00 per day
Groups of 4 - $165.00 per day
Tuesday - Flatwork/Gymnastics
Wednesday  -  Cross Country 
Our XC includes Water/Ditches/Banks for levels BN-Prelim
2011 new sunken road complex and additional new jumps
Registration must be received with payments in full prior to clinic to reserve your spot.  Any questions call Claudia Winter @ 518-537-4417 or email cswfarms@valstar.net
Visit us on the web at cswfarms.net

Silva's Ride Times for Dressage at Devon

Silva will be competing at the prestigious Dressage at Devon horse show
September 27th-October 2nd 2011

For complete Day Sheets (with ride times) click here

Thursday Sept. 29

4:00pm Fourth Level Test 1 riding Aesthete

5:27pm Fourth Level Test 1 riding Duvent

6:46om FEI Test for 6 year olds riding Aesthete

Friday Sept. 30

8:39 am FEI Test for 6 year olds (Final) Aesthete

10:10am Ashlea riding in the YR Team Test

Saturday Oct 1

9:32am Fourth Level Test 2 riding Aesthete

11:30am Fourth Level Test 2 riding Duvent

3:45pm Ashlea riding YR Individual Test

Sunday Oct. 2

8:00am Fourth Level Test 2 riding Duvent

9:12am Fourth Level Test 2 riding Aesthete

10:05 Ashlea riding YR Freestyle

10:31am Fourth Level Test 3 (GAIG/USDF Qual) riding Duvent

12:09pm Fourth Level Test 3 (GAIG/USDF Qual) riding Aesthete

If Richie Tenenbaum was a girl.

I watched The Royal Tenenbaums this weekend once again. The movie simply gives me a strange comforting.


Tagaytay with Wincy, around June or July 2011.
Just found this in my external hard drive. Wincy takes so much photographs whenever we’d go out on weekends, but we never get to upload it. Oh, time flies fast.

City Stats: Manchester City v Everton

Joe Hart
  • Distribution: 19/27 - 70%
  • Saves: 2/2 - 100%
  • Minutes: 90

Micah Richards
  • Shots: 0
  • Passes: 53/59 - 89%
  • Interceptions: 0
  • Tackles: 4/5 - 80%
  • Minutes: 90

Vincent Kompany
  • Shots: 0/1 - 1 blocked - 0%
  • Passes: 58/66 - 87%
  • Interceptions: 0
  • Tackles: 7/8 - 87%
  • Minutes: 90

Joleon Lescott
  • Shots: 0
  • Passes: 58/62 - 93%
  • Interceptions: 1
  • Tackles: 3/4 - 75%
  • Minutes: 90

Gael Clichy
  • Shots: 0/1 - 0%
  • Passes: 66/75 - 88%
  • Interceptions: 1
  • Tackles: 3/4 - 75%
  • Minutes: 90

Yaya Toure
  • Shots: 1/2 - 5-%
  • Passes: 64/70 - 91%
  • Interceptions: 3
  • Tackles: 5/6 - 83%
  • Minutes: 90

Gareth Barry
  • Shots: 1/2 - 50%
  • Passes: 50/61 - 82%
  • Interceptions: 1
  • Tackles: 3/6 - 50%
  • Minutes: 90

David Silva
  • Shots: 1/3 - 1 blocked - 33%
  • Passes: 44/56 - 1 assist - 78%
  • Interceptions: 1
  • Tackles: 1/1 - 100%
  • Minutes: 90

Samir Nasri
  • Shots: 1/2 - 50%
  • Passes: 65/72 - 90%
  • Interceptions: 0
  • Tackles: 2/3 - 66%
  • Minutes: 83

Sergio Aguero
  • Shots: 1/3 - 33%
  • Passes: 28/37 - 1 assist - 75%
  • Interceptions: 0
  • Tackles: 0/2 - 0%
  • Minutes: 79

Edin Dzeko
  • Shots: 0/2 - 0%
  • Passes: 13/24 - 54%
  • Interceptions: 1
  • Tackles: 3/3 - 100%
  • Minutes: 60

Mario Balotelli
  • Shots: 1/2 - 1 goal - 50% - 50% goals/shots ratio
  • Passes: 8/11 - 72%
  • Interceptions: 0
  • Tackles: 3/5 - 60%
  • Minutes: 30

James Milner
  • Shots: 1/1 - 1 goal - 100% - 100% goals/shots ratio
  • Passes: 4/7 - 57%
  • Interceptions: 1
  • Tackles: 0/1 - 0%
  • Minutes: 11

Stefan Savic
  • Shots: 0
  • Passes: 1/2 - 50%
  • Interceptions: 1
  • Tackles: 0
  • Minutes: 7

Team Stats
  • Shots: 7/19 - 2 goals - 39% - 10% goals/shots ratio
  • Passes: 531/692 - 2 assists - 76%
  • Interceptions: 10
  • Tackles: 34/48 - 70%
  • Possession: 63%
  • Corners: 7
  • Fouls: 9

The Way I See It: Autumn

The Way I See It photo prompt comes from Molly at Close to Home.

Where I live we are late bloomers in the autumn category.  We have apple festivals up the hill, and a few more coloring leaves there at the snowline.  But just down the hill at my house it has a decidedly "mild summer" feel to it.  But I searched and found signs of autumn's early rumblings:

I am not sure what possessed me but I bought a pumpkin the size of a small country.  Ginormous is the word that everyone has used.  But you know what?  It makes me laugh.  And it is so beautifully orange.  So even if I have to tighten my core muscles to lift the thing, the pumpkin is here for the duration.

The tree we have the most of is oak, and those leaves turn brown and yellow in the autumn.  It is the reds that I miss.  But yesterday at the library I saw these leaves sparkling in the early morning light and they sang "Autumn!" to me.

And walking across a parking lot, these little "lanterns" were scattered on the edge.  What a strangely beautiful plant!  With the indented lines down their sides, they almost look like fat, shriveling carrots. 

Just outside my kitchen window the light is particularly sparkling in the early morning and the late  afternoon.  The slant of the autumnal sunshine makes it all the more special.  Claire found this patch of weeds all aglow in the late afternoon yesterday.  It is amazing what the right light (and a creative girl) can do to a weed.

The long shadows and the early darkness have arrived, but we wait impatiently for a crisp chill in the air and the first rain of the season.  Autumn's pleasures are my favorites.

You should join the fun! This Friday's prompt is Evening.