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Keeping up with the SmartPakers: Weekend Update – July 8, 2013

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 revealed! Read about what SmartPakers did this past week and see if any of our adventures sound similar to yours…

My husband Todd and I drove down to southern Illinois to visit my cousin Billy and his wife Mary Ann. After a scrumptious dinner that ended with not one, not two, but THREE different kinds of pie (blueberry, pecan and pumpkin), we did some “four-wheelin” on their 20 acres. PS when I’m in this neck of the woods with family I go by my middle name, Faye. – Dr. Lydia Gray, Staff Veterinarian

How relaxing was your holiday? My pooch has it down to a science.
– Ellen W., Receiving

This weekend my cousin got married to his beautiful bride, while my children, Rose and Max, participated as a flower girl and ring bearer. Despite the heat, it was a perfect day of family and celebrating. I couldn’t have asked for more well-behaved children as they walked down the aisle, posed for pictures, and danced the night away. Here they are posing together, walking down the aisle, and showing some surprise that the cider was “crinkly”. That’s “carbonated” in preschool speak! – Kristen I., Operations

On June 29th and 30th I participated in the MS Cape Cod Getaway. This event is a 2 day, 150 mile ride from Boston to Provincetown. Over 2,100 cyclists rode over the weekend and helped raise funds for MS research. My team raised over $10,000 thanks to the generous donations of our friends and family. The route took us through many of the gorgeous coastal towns here on the South Shore and Cape and we got the privilege of riding our bikes over the Bourne Bridge. What a way to start your Sunday! It was a rainy start on Saturday at UMASS but we finished to sunny skies over the finish line in Provincetown midday Sunday.

Ride Statistics:

  • Oldest Riders: 76
  • Youngest Rider: 14
  • States Represented: 30 – Including: AZ, CA, CO, CT, FL, GA, IL, IN, KY, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MT, NC, NH, NJ, NM, NY, OH, PA, RI, TX, VA, VT, WA, WI, plus DC
  • Countries Represented: 4 – Canada, Hong Kong, Switzerland and the US
  • Men v. Women: 66% men, 34% women
  • Registered Riders: 2,074, not including riders signing up during CCG weekend
  • Sandwiches Eaten: 5,425
  • Beer Consumed: 32 kegs

– Helen M., Accounting

I got to go home to PA for an extended 4th of July weekend, and I had a blast with my family, friends, and, of course, horses! While I was home, I had another AWESOME lesson on 4-year-old Rory, the four-hoofed love of my life. We started off a little slugglish because it was a HOT day for lesson, but he eventually perked up, and I took him for a well-earned dip in the creek to cool off afterward. He’s such a brave boy, and he loves playing in the creek! On the 4th, my family and I went white water rafting in the Poconos for the second year in a row and had a great time. Because they’ve had so much rain, the water was much higher and faster than last year, so it was a really fun trip—and I have a picture to proof it! Can you guess which one I am? (Hint, I’m the one sporting the SmartPak hat!) – Lindsay B., Creative

I took a long weekend for the 4th of July holiday and headed south to North Carolina to visit my boyfriend. We had a great time relaxing at the beach, eating well, and hanging out on his friend’s boat! We took the boat out on the river near downtown Wilmington for their fireworks and had the perfect view since they set the fireworks off in the water near the USS North Carolina battleship. On the way back through the river I was dying to see an alligator, but all we saw were their flattened beds – hopefully better luck next time! – Paige Z., Customer Care

My 4th of July holiday included everything that I love – Boating, weddings and ponies!!! I started off my long weekend by spending the 4th on a friends boat! We headed over to World’s End in Hingham, dropped the anchor and just relaxed on the boat. We spent a good deal of time just sitting in the cool ocean water as it was a hot one! The following day, I headed down to Mashpee on the Cape to photograph a wedding. While the high 90 temps weren’t letting up, I was thankful they chose an indoor ceremony and reception! It definitely didn’t keep us from taking the bridal party down to the beach to make for a perfect cape style wedding. Saturday night, my boyfriend Kevin and I, headed to Hingham to grab a burger at one of our favorite places – Wahlburgers (owned by Mark, Donny & Paul Wahlburg) and caught the Hingham fireworks. They started before we got there but it made for a fun drive as the fireworks were in direct view going down the street. I finished up my weekend by having an AMAZING lesson with my dressage trainer, Sarah! While I am definitely a hunter rider, I love lessoning with her to keep Harri (my Connemara/Tb) working as correct as possible on the flat. Again a hot, HOT day but Harri was a rockstar! – Kristina S., Creative

My dog Maxy had a great 4th of July. We went to Maine for the weekend and he found his favorite spot in the house, on the top of the stairs so he could snoop on everyone. What a Snoop-Dog! – Brittany C., Creative

In case you didn’t hear already, it was HOT in New England over the long holiday weekend! So hot that I really didn’t do much with my horse, Sawyer… He had four leisurely days of getting hosed off and going for a few hand walks. Luckily he loves our SmartLytes Pellets (he’ll eat them out of my had like a treat!), so I was able to give him extra salt and electrolytes every day, in addition to the SmartLytes in his SmartPak and his Himalayan Salt Lick. This kept him drinking lots of water, which kept my mind at ease! Did you know that horses need at least an ounce of salt per day even when they’re in no work, and even more when they’re sweating due to exercise or hot weather? Check out this awesome blog article that explains it!

This picture is Sawyer with his buddy Newt, owned by SmartPaker Casey. They only get a tiny bit of grazing time without muzzles on, but it was so hot and buggy that they were more interested in taking care of each other’s itches than grazing! That’s saying a lot for two Morgans…
– Jessica N., Marketing

I spent the 4th of July in Greenville, Maine at Moosehead Lake with my family. We went watched the 4th of July parade and went to the beach at Lily Bay. At night we drove 20 miles out to Kakadjo to look for moose. We saw this guy hanging out in the water eating! – Katrina C., Customer Care

Birds, Pigs and Zombies invade Carver!

4th of July week is always a really fantastic time in New England. For the past seven years it has been even more fantastic because we always celebrate my son Logan’s birthday during that week. This year was no exception. The theme was Angry Birds and we did it up right with a really fun pool party and a face painter. Logan starred as one of the Angry Birds pigs and insisted that I become princess pig complete with a purple bow. About half way through the face painting extravaganza, Logan decided that he wanted to be a zombie so off came the pig face paint and in its place came a scary zombie face…he even changed into his zombie costume to make the transformation complete. The great thing about having a 7 year old is that it gives me a great excuse to be a kid myself 🙂 – Melissa H., Merchandising

This 4th of July weekend, my boyfriend and I started out by taking our recently adopted dog, Daphne, to her first Plymouth 4th of July Parade. She was really well behaved, and lay down next to me in the shade the entire time. We then left her alone for the first time since we adopted her 3 weeks ago (thanks to fellow SmartPaker James for doggy-sitting for us!) and headed down to Warwick, Rhode Island, where we stayed at a beautiful little bed & breakfast Thursday through Sunday. We enjoyed waterfront views, relaxing together, and the most amazing fireworks all 3 nights that we were there! Friday we took a trip down to Newport, where it was a good 10-12 degrees cooler, and walked over 12 miles. We visited 5 of the Newport mansions, and tried to imagine what it must have been like to live during the Guilded Age! Saturday we stayed inside, but ventured out to go see Despicable Me 2 and have dinner on Federal Hill in Providence. Sunday we had planned on kayaking, but really didn’t want to be outside in the 94 degree heat so we headed home early- much to Daphne’s delight! – Jessica D., Customer Care


Although I did spend July 4th watching a parade and at a barbeque, there is just no rest for the wicked and I ended up working outside the rest of the long weekend.

On Friday I spent the day buying and installing fans and stall gates for my horses. This weather has been so hot for them that I wanted to try to help cool them off by hanging box fans. I also hung stall gates to help increase the air flow within the barn. Even Albee, the orange barn cat, can be seen enjoying the breeze next to my pony, Bella.

Saturday I spent most of the day outside fixing fences. (It was very hot in the sun). And then on Sunday I judged at the fabulous Cranberry Circuit at Grazing Fields Farm. It was a fabulous day with fabulous people, great riders, and nice horses. The picture is part of my view from the judges booth. – Jessica R., IT

We had a great 4th of July! While camping in Maine, Penelope got to see her first fireworks and the SmartPak chair came in very handy sitting by the fire. 🙂 – Kate C., Merchandising

I fired up the smoker and smoked some ribs. 🙂 – Matt S., IT

I gave the 4 horses that I take care of at my house several baths over the weekend. This is Horton Hears a Who aka Hortie taking a nice roll afterwards. (can you see his puckered up lips during the roll?!) Oh, and that’s Bobby hangin out on my cool-ish desk who clearly doesn’t miss a meal. – Susan T., Barn Marketing

In addition to fantastic 4th of July family activities and celebrations in Scituate and Denis Port, Massachusetts I competed in the “Whaling City Sprint Triathlon” in New Bedford, Massachusetts. This race was held at New Bedford’s Fort Taber Park, a hidden gem in Southeastern Massachusetts. In sweltering heat, I finished 8th in my age group for all three events (swim, bike and run), but 1st in my age group for the run! The picture is of me and my children taken after the race at the finish line. – Keith Q., IT

Over the 4th my husband and I ventured down to Wellfleet to spend some much needed time on my father in law’s boat. Despite the heat wave in much of New England, there was a nice breeze on the water and the weather was perfect. So much so, that we were even able to bring our dogs on the boat for the day on the 4th. Harley and Bella went swimming, sun bathed, and I even got Bella to lounge in the float with me out at our favorite spot called Jeremy Point. Unfortunately the rest of the weekend was way too hot for the girls to come on the boat but that didn’t stop us from going out and doing a little fishing, some more swimming and lounging to make the best of the heat! Happy Birthday America! – Autumn I., Merchandising

This 4th of July weekend was super hot, but awesome all the same. On the 4th Matt and I headed down to his family’s waterfront cottage and watched fireworks from the patio all around us. It’s the perfect spot to sit and make s’mores while watching the different fireworks displays. Matt and I both had Friday off so we hit the gym and later in the day saw Monsters University which was pretty awesome – it was a laid back day of which we don’t get many. Saturday we went to a friend’s in Plymouth for a cookout and played football and volleyball in the yard until well after dark. Sunday we ended the weekend by mowing our gigantic lawn by tag-teaming it with two push lawn mowers. Our neighbors thought we were crazy for mowing the lawn in the heat, so lent us their ride-on tractor to finish it up (we have amazingly nice neighbors!). After the lawn was done we sprayed each other down with the hose to cool off and spent the rest of the day with my family celebrating a few birthdays 🙂 – Michelle M., Customer Care

Fourth of July is always a great time down on Cape Cod! I must say I never realized how lucky I was to grow up and participate in all the summer time festivities – July 4th being my favorite of course! This past week not only was I able to reconnect with old friends but also enjoy some of my other hobbies that are not horse related! There was a great deal of time spent out on the beach – even though the Nauset Outer Beach was closed we still found some great spots! We were able to go on a sunset cruise out of Rock Harbor in Orleans on the HindSight charter boat to Provincetown Harbor to watch the fireworks- What a great evening out on the water with great company! The week continued with visiting the Wequassett Beach Club, bass fishing, boating, and kayaking! – Lindsey A., Customer Care

I went down from Friday to Sunday to visit my grandmother in eastern Maryland and watch my horse compete at the Maryland Horse Trials in western Maryland! On Saturday my pony’s trainer competed him in the open Novice division at the Maryland Horse Trials and he was absolutely amazing! He didn’t place, but ended on his dressage score and absolutely tore up stadium and cross country. I couldn’t have been prouder. He’s a Chincoteague pony and I always enjoy hearing people’s disbelief when they find that out – he’s a pretty unique little guy! Other than that, I ate lots of delicious southern food and got to see my third fireworks display of the week. Not a bad three days. Totally worth all of the excessive driving! – Amanda B., Retail Store

Had a fantastic 4th of July week up in Maine with my family! Climbed Mount Pisgah with my brother, sister-in-law and 3-yr-old niece and even made it to the top of the (scary) fire tower for a beautiful view of the area. Lots of swimming, kayaking and long walks with the dog. Took my dad’s old sailboat out for a spin and remembered most of the sailing lessons from when I was 10 – only crashed into the neighbor’s dock once and managed to avoid the loons and speedboats. Amazing week! – Jen B., Retail Store

Fourth of July was spent in the usual way: parading down the main streets of the South Shore bedazzled in red, white and blue. Sam only shied at a scary green crosswalk and was otherwise his usual gentlemanly self despite the 90 degree+ heat. (We accompanied, once again, the crowd favorite, Buddy the pony.) I decided that heat and humidity was also a great time to work on reorganizing my third floor without air conditioning. Conclusion thus far is that I don’t need to buy any more horse books for at least five years. – Elizabeth R., Customer Care

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2 comments on “Keeping up with the SmartPakers: Weekend Update – July 8, 2013
  1. Julie Jolma says:

    Wow – glad some horse owners had a nice weekend…Washington State is absolutely horrible in the fireworks department…most every bomb is legal and it terrorizes the animals!!! It is legal to blow up things that literally shake the ground for eight days here, so the week of July 4th is pure misery here!!! We had horse-terrifying noise from June 28 thru July 6th at 1am!!!

  2. Alia says:

    Went a schooling show and got reserve champion in the 2ft division

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