Keeping up with the SmartPakers: Weekend Update – December 10, 2012

During the week, you know our life is no mystery: we are here working hard to make you happier and your horse healthier. But what do we do on the weekend, you ask? The mystery is finally revealed! Read about what SmartPakers did this past weekend and see if any of our adventures sound similar to yours…

“This weekend my boyfriend and I bought our very first house! After lots of searching and tons of paperwork we finally closed this past Friday. Now we’re working on fixing it up and making it our own. We’re hoping to be moved in before Christmas.” – Michelle, Customer Care


“This past weekend, I took my three-year-old horse, Kai, for a ride outside of the round pen for the first time. Instead of trying him out in the arena first, we decided that a trip around the bogs would be a nice change of pace. This skipped a few transition steps in the process, but I took a sink or swim mentality fully realizing I was asking for a huge step from my baby (and putting my own neck on the line in the process). It paid off! Nikki rode my other horse, Playboy, and Sara brought Charlie as “stabilizers,” but Kai wanted to lead the pack the entire trip out. We had a few “Oh my God, what is that?!” moments, but he never flaked out or did anything stupid. He even showed Playboy up a few times on the maturity front! I couldn’t have been prouder!” – Cathlin, Finance


“This weekend, I went to a place called Wahlburgers in Hingham, MA, for the first time with some friends, and the experience did not disappoint! Wahlburgers has more of a claim to fame than just really delicious hamburgers (and they are REALLY delicious)—it’s owned and run by the Wahlberg family. That’s right, as in Mark Wahlberg. I’ve been looking forward to this trip because my friends and I had been planning it for some time as a (very) belated birthday celebration, and I’m always game for some really delicious burgers. We walked in and got in line to order our burgers, and then I did a double take—just in front of us in line was none other than Mark Wahlberg himself! He was ordering burgers at the register like any normal person. When it came my turn to order, I was so distracted by Marky Mark standing just 5 feet away that I forget to ask for everything I wanted on my burger and entirely forgot about ordering a drink or fries. After I was through ordering, he walked by and said hello, and my friend and I asked him for a picture (I’m on the left!). He was very gracious, and he even made a point to say goodbye to us before he left. Maybe it was because I was already floating on Cloud 9, but the burgers (even missing some toppings) were delicious, and I’ll definitely be going back—but I doubt I’ll get that lucky a second time! Let’s just say, my first trip to Wahlburgers definitely exceeded my expectations.”
- Lindsay, Creative



“This weekend, my mom came out to visit and we ran the Bayside Runner Winter Lights 5K together on Friday. The race was held in downtown Plymouth and started right after the annual tree lighting. It was a great race, and I’m looking forward to doing it again next year. The rest of the weekend, I was able to get some much overdue riding time in and took my two horses, Lego and Nemo, trail riding out on the cranberry bogs.”
- Ellen, Accounting



“Last weekend I went to Nantucket for the Christmas Stroll. It was a fun weekend filled with a lot of merriment, eating, and drinking! Even the whale skeleton at the whaling museum was getting into the holiday spirit. This weekend we had our barn Christmas party and I baked horse cookies! Stella also spent some time on Friday decorating her cube at work.” – Renee, Merchandising


“We braved the horrible winter weather Saturday to hunt for our first Christmas tree in our new house. Accompanying us was a helpful 11-week-old Australian Shepard, Colt, and 5-year-old Australian cattle dog, Callie. After a long day of tree cutting and decorating the tree, Colt decided to take a few minutes of shut eye underneath my hat.” – Adam & Carolyn, Production


“My horse, Charlie, finally has the green light to get back to work after his tendon injury last winter. We took advantage of the beautiful weather on Sunday to attempt something Charlie hasn’t done before: riding in the cranberry bogs solo! I did have to hop off at one point to lead him over a patch of ground that didn’t look quite right to him. (How dare someone alter the footing in any way, there used to be grass here and now it’s just dirt. This must equal a trapdoor to some sort of monster and no way are we walking over that!) Once we had made it out to the bogs he was quite brave, only behaving silly a few times “just for fun.” We had an awesome ride, and I couldn’t be happier to have my partner in crime back in action.” – Sara, Customer Care


“Sunday was a beautiful, 50-degree day, and I arrived at the barn to find my horse snoozing in the mid-morning sun. I love when he lets me scratch his ears while he is still lying down!” – Sara, Creative


“This weekend I had a chance to make a quick trip to Vermont for the annual Christmas baking day that my Mom has every year. I haven’t been able to make it for the past few years, so I was thrilled to have a chance to bake Christmas cookies, wrap gifts, and spend time with family and friends. We made seven different varieties of cookies and enjoyed countless laughs. I am officially in the holiday spirit!!” – Ashley, Customer Care


“This weekend, I attended my second horse show with my new horse, Cadenza. It’s been a little bit of a bumpy start for her, as she is from Texas and has never seen snow! Or a Hurricane for that matter. However, she was perfect this weekend and we were Champions! I can’t wait for her to move up to MA today so we can continue to show and keep getting better!” – Mollie, Creative


“I came home from a busy travel week to find a lovely certificate and stall plaque from the American Trakehner Association waiting for me in my mail pile. Here’s what the letter from Executive Director Kelly Gulick said:
‘On behalf of the Awards Committee I extend to you congratulations on winning a Reserve Champion Horse of the Year (HOY) Award in Driving from the American Trakehner Association. Enclosed please find the new HOY plaques, designed to replicate the stall plaques awarded by the Trakehner Verband. We have also enclosed a certificate suitable for framing. The members and Board of Directors of the American Trakehner Association are proud to have you and your horse representing the Trakehner breed in North America.’
Yay Newman! This is the best award we’ve ever gotten, so I’m clearing a space on the wall in my office to display it.” – Dr. Lydia Gray, Staff Veterinarian


“This weekend started off with a cookie swap on Friday night (I made cake batter chocolate chip cookies—they were a huge hit). I brought home a wide variety of fun holiday cookies, which made for a happy husband. Saturday was a low-key day, and I spent some quality time with my dogs and my horse. Sunday was my real excitement of the weekend! I took my horse Ritchie to the beach for the first time ever. We went with one of my best friends, Robin, and her horse Luke. We went to a beach on Cape Cod where there are beautiful sand bars at low tide. Ritchie was a bit nervous at first but after a while he realized that nothing was going to eat him and he was safe to relax and have a good time. I can’t wait to go again, but Sunday was a memory I will cherish forever.” – Whitney, Customer Care


“This past weeked, Dr. Lydia Gray (with cookie) and I posed in front of Trigger and Bullet while at the AAEP Annual Convention in Anaheim, California. Yep, the REAL Trigger and Bullet, purchased by RFD-TV and visiting the Equine Feed Oat Project booth during the largest gathering of equine veterinarians in the world. After a quick trip around the floor to see who else was there, we headed back to the SmartPak booth to answer questions about ColiCare, SmartPak’s new colic surgery reimbursement program.”
- Casey, Customer Care & Dr. Lydia Gray, Staff Veterinarian

“Last weekend, I had a spur of the moment trip to Wellington! This is my first winter in quite a few years that I’m not spending in Wellington, so it was so nice to be able to visit for a few days! I am very lucky to have a few friends there with lots of horses to ride, so I was able to spend most of the weekend in the saddle soaking up the sunshine! Saturday night, we went over to the horse show to watch the Holiday and Horses FEI World Cup Grand Prix where Katie Dinan went all out in the jump off and took the blue!” – Jen, Customer Care


“I was a busy bee this weekend, starting out with a lesson Friday night on a potential horse to lease in 2013, as my horses will be staying up in Groton (they have both earned a relaxing retirement!). The lesson was so much fun and so challenging, and I have big plans for dressage domination this summer! Saturday and Sunday I spent up in Groton for a ‘Princess Pony’ birthday party—my co-owner’s daughter is turningfive, and I met her when she was just an infant!—and despite the icky weather had to snuggle with Milo and Galli. The sun came out on Sunday, and Galli and I had a good ride in our big field, along with my dog, Lola. While preparing to tuck the ponies in for the evening, a wild bunny let me take his close-up. Farm life is a lot of fun!” – Kristin, Creative


“This weekend, I enjoyed spending time with my dog and getting ready for the holidays! Earlier this week I took Tasha to see Santa. She was scared of him at first but ended up being best friends after a couple cookies. On Saturday, Tasha and I enjoyed the warm weather and went for a nice beach walk to enjoy her favorite past time of chasing seagulls.” – Elizabeth C., Customer Care


“Fellow SmartPaker, Molly, and I try to meet up on weekends for a nice walk through Massasoit State Park with our dogs, Puu, Sam, and Honor. It’s the perfect way to spend a Sunday morning, and the dogs seem to love it just as much as we do! On our last walk we were even able to get the dogs to pose for this great group shot!”
- Carrie, Creative


“Two weekends ago, we had my daughter’s first birthday party! Scary that she’s one already! But one of the most amazing things from the day, aside from the car that fellow SmartPaker, Bjorn, got for Hazel that almost caused a riot amongst the 10 kids (all girls), was the birthday cake that my wife and mother-in-law made. Everything on it was edible except for the animals (yes, there was a horse) and the fence posts. It was an awesome time, Hazel got lots and lots of wonderful presents, and it was made even better by having four other SmartPakers there to celebrate with us!” – Nels, Videographer


“This weekend provided to be very busy! My horse Bella was able to meet Santa! She was extremely enthused to find out he had a very large basket full of candy canes—as if the big guy in red wasn’t awesome already. She was thrilled with this adventure. With a great start to our day, we were able to head to one of my favorite winter horse shows to work on getting qualified for Equitation Finals in the snow no less.” – Lindsey, Customer Care


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3 comments on “Keeping up with the SmartPakers: Weekend Update – December 10, 2012
  1. Deb Hamilton says:

    My new horse Andy needs a new bridle , the one I have now, the throat latch is too short!! Merry Christmas everyone!!

  2. Michele says:

    I LOVE the SmartPak weekend update. I feel so connected to the SmartPak family. Now if only I were closer and not stuck in California…

    • SmartPak SmartPak says:

      We’re so glad you have been enjoying our Weekend Update Michele! It is a fun look at what all of us SmartPakers do in our free time. :)

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Jen and Tally
Apparently I've been obsessed with horses since I was born, and I used to beg for pony rides on a regular basis. I started showing in 4-H, progressed to equitation and jumpers in high school and rode on the IHSA team in college where I also discovered the joys...

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