Animals, Life

Do You Believe That Dreams Can Come True?

My 11-year-old daughter owns a full-blooded Arabian horse. Silver Sight, aka ‘Thomas‘. Who knew this is the way our lives would go? What once seemed an impossibility is now a reality

Here are two videos of our afternoon yesterday spent with Thomas at the barn. The first was edited using Magisto, with some still shots and music added.

And the second is the original video: turn up the sound and you will hear horses neighing and the pounding sounds of his hooves.

  • Paying for lessons to learn to ride – less dinners and movies out.
  • Competing in shows – has become our family vacations for two years.
  • Buying a full Arabian horse – let’s just say thousands of dollars.
  • Seeing my daughter happy, motivated and learning responsibility – Priceless!

It was my daughter’s dream to have her own horse. It was also my dream and it only took me 51 years to realize even if it is vicariously through her. 🙂 Never stop chasing and believing in the power of your dreams!

Adventure, Animals, Photograph, Poetry

Love at First Sight


    Love at first sight
    A beacon across the cold night
    Two hearts held tight

     ~Mark Schutter ©2015

If you’ve followed me here on the blog or on any other social media you probably know that my daughter loves horses, as do I. She has been competing for two years riding a horse owned by her trainer, which she kindly gave my daughter half ownership of until she got a horse of her own.

Well, next year she moves up in class and the competition is sure to get tougher. So we started putting out feelers to see what horses might be available, not really expecting much and having plenty of time to look.

We immediately were contacted by three people who had horses for sale that fit what we were looking for. The first two were a no go. My daughter was frustrated and not looking forward to go see and ride the third.

You can guess what happened next. Yep, love at first sight. They seem to be a perfect match and her trainer says this is a horse that has the potential to take her as far as she wants to go. We are currently leasing the horse to see how it goes before we shell out money to buy. My daughter has been riding everyday except one over the past week and is trying to come up with a name.

His registered name is Silver Sight, full blooded Arabian.  Oh my, what are we getting ourselves into? Just helping our little girl chase her dreams, we love our children don’t we? This story is sure to be continued, stay tuned.


Good Enough is Good Enough

Good Enough

a lofty and high goal
at the cost of your soul

when is…
good enough, good enough

just to do your best
in meeting the test

when is…
good enough, good enough

it is not the thing
is the only thing

when is…
good enough, good enough

just for being you
is minimized and we do

when is…
good enough, good enough

against the perceptions
to be better than yesterday

good enough is good enough

~Mark Schutter ©2015

We teach our kids to apply themselves and they can do whatever they want.  Just for showing up they are rewarded and sometimes with very little effort on their parts.  We coddle and push, telling them that winning is not everything it is the only thing.  Then when they lose or fail we tell them it is okay that participating is the main thing.  As parents, can we have it both ways?  Are our expectations our of whack?

My daughter is already becoming an accomplished horse rider, winning Reserve Grand Champion for High Points in her age group in her first year of competing.  She rides a full Spanish Arabian Summer Showhorse named TaajRico and thanks to the generosity of her trainer she is half owner of. He is called Rico for short, that is him in the picture above, and yes, that is me on the quarter-horse behind her. 🙂 She competes in Walk/Trot Hunter Seat and Saddle Seat Equitation and Pleasure classes. I am so proud of her, but I do not want her to lose her joy and love of horses because she has to always be aware of what she is doing. 

  • “Watch your diagonal.”
  • “Keep your foot flat.”
  • “Lower your hands.”
  • “Sit back, you are to far forward.”
  • “Keep his head down.” …and on and on.

She has voiced even now that sometimes she just wants to be around her horse and ride for fun and not worry about all these things that might make her a champion.  I want her to be happy and yet, I watch my daughter succeed at so many things and my heart swells with pride wanting to scream to everyone within earshot, “Look at her!”  Is this a veiled reflection of my own insecurities and finding some redemption vicariously through her accomplishments?  And she is only 10 years old, what does that say about me?

She is learning so much beyond just winning and losing.  She is responsibleRibbons 2014 to take care of this living breathing animal.  Yet, when she does fall short I will minimize the loss and make excuses, justifying that it was not her but something else that made her fail.  Does this give her a false sense of reality?  The idea that we should teach our kids to not be in competition with the kid down the street, on the field or in the classroom is almost ludicrous.  Our society pits us against each other in so may ways in the name of entertainment, in business, in just getting ahead of or at least keeping up with the family down on the corner and their 3500 square foot house.

Walking Rico 2014And yet… competition and competing is good.  To better oneself and to come out stronger and wiser regardless of the real outcome.  We should strive to be better than we were yesterday, even if it is only a little, that should be our goal.  To paraphrase Matthew McConaughey, we need to have someone to chase and that someone should be ourselves ten years from now.  We will never catch them but that is okay, it pushes us to be better and see a future that is both exciting and challenging.  Sometime good enough is good enough. You can watch the short video of his 2014 Oscar acceptance speech below.

Adventure, Animals, Life

The Championship Ride

A short video of my daughter’s Championship Ride in the English Hunter Walk/Trot Class of the Daffodil All Arabian Show sponsored by the Daffodil Arabian Horse Association of Washington earlier this year.  She is riding a Spanish Arabian horse named Rico owned by Josie Gillespie of Gillespie Performance Horses. This video was created and edited using the app Magisto. Enjoy and thanks for watching! ~M

Adventure, Animals, Art

Shadow Magic

"Shadow Magic"   Acrylic on canvas    18x24 inches  ~Mark Schutter ©2014
“Shadow Magic”  Acrylic on canvas 18×24 inches ~Mark Schutter ©2014

Shadow Magic - InspirationThis is the photograph that became the inspiration for this painting.  It was taken outside the arena at my daughter’s last horse show. I love the simplicity of the shadow outline of a rider on horseback.  I gave it a twist with a colorful background in the painting above.

Thanks for stopping by! ~M