Archives: October 2012

Ready to Horse Around at Lake of the Woods VA?

Ready to Horse Around?

The last time I rode a horse, it did not end well. And my last visit from a horse was “Charley,” alerting me to a blood clot in my calf after foot surgery! Being a determined person, however, I am making a vow to once again “horse around!” Carolyn McFarland, Manager of the Equestrian Center, doesn’t know this yet, but she will be an important participant in my overcoming a fear.

Living in Texas as a young girl, I owned a Welsh cross, while my best friend owned a quarter horse. If you aren’t familiar with horses, mine was like a VW Bug compared to her more powerful, larger, Cadillac SUV. The population of Pottsboro, the tiny town in which I lived, was 436, and the horse population well outnumbered the people. Riding often meant galloping through neighbors’ yards. Back then, hanging clothes out to dry was a common sight. One hot, dry Texas day, I decided to ride my friend’s horse. Not remembering that hers was much taller than mine, I ducked the clotheslines, as I had done many times prior on my little Welsh, only to be…you guessed it…clotheslined! I don’t remember anything else until waking up on the sofa in my home.

As an Air Force brat, my family moved to Florida shortly thereafter, and horses naturally became a distant thought. Fast forward 30 years, and here I am at Lake of the Woods. I must admit that the Equestrian Center wasn’t a huge draw when deciding to make the lake my home. Now, however, I am determined to take advantage of ALL of the incredible amenities we are so fortunate to have right here, right inside the gates!
In preparation for Ann Cameron Siegal’s visit to LOW to write the story on our community for the Washington Post, I decided that I should learn more about the Equestrian Center in order to be a proper resource. So I visited with Carolyn at the Center and even discussed a gorgeous trail ride (palms sweating) through the Wilderness Battlefield Park on a fall day at the peak of the leaf-changing-season. I was cautiously looking forward to it. As fate would have it, though, the microburst hit the lake, and I was “saved,’ as the number of downed trees forced the trail to be closed.
Being friends with Carolyn on facebook, and seeing how passionate she is about the Center and the horses, I decided it was time to face my fear. I decided that Carolyn was just the person to help me. I met with her again…and with the horses. Did you know that the Center offers pony rides, pony parties, horse camps, jumper shows, hunter shows, trail rides, and even held the first annual Dog Show this year?
I want to jump on this bandwagon of activity! I want to be able to tell my clients to whom I’ve sold homes first hand how great a trail ride is! So this fall, hopefully I won’t (fall)! I will pull myself up by my bootstraps and face my fear; I will “jump back up on the horse” and take a trail ride with Carolyn by my side. By the end of October, I am determined to have once again “horsed around!”
Until next timeit’s another beautiful day at the lake!
Pat Licata, REALTOR
Licata on the Lake

Falling for the Lake…Again!

As much as I look forward to, and love, the spring and summer activities at the Lake, fall truly is my favorite season. My first introduction to four distinct seasons was living in Denver, CO, as a young girl (prior to my cowgirl experience in Texas from which I still haven’t recovered). And I’ve appreciated being able to enjoy each season ever since.
For those who think the lake sleeps when summer gives way to the cooler temperatures, shorter days, and crisp air, think again! Fall at the lake affords us a plethora of activities: Schutzenfest, Oktoberfest or trick-or-treating at Clubhouse Point; horse shows at, and trail rides from, the Equestrian Center; $5 burger night; an art show; and so much more!
In addition to fall activities, I also look forward to, and love, the spectacular shout of color from the trees along the shores of the lake and throughout the community, as well as the mums, burning bushes, and other fall flowering plants. I enjoy seeing the pumpkins adorning walkways and the scent of fireplaces having been stoked to temper the new season’s chill. I love the sight of the mist on the lake from the cooler, fall air touching the warmer water. I gladly embrace football, curling up with a “must read” in front of the fireplace, actually sleeping under the covers, and the need for wearing sweaters.
I must admit, however, that I am less than enamored with the harsh smack of the acorns and hickory nuts hitting the roof of my house and my car…and my head. The reality is that no person (or animal) is safe in my yard! The missiles do not discriminate; they are equal-opportunity attackers! Yes, most of my fall visitors joke about the need to wear a helmet. My daughter’s dog runs for her life from the front door to the street, as she, like the rest of us, has been the victim of an unwarranted attack.
Driving through the community, I feel fortunate to live here. I take in the sights, no matter how ordinary. Whether it is watching the children excitedly load the buses or swerving on countless occasions to avoid the squirrels and chipmunks playing “chicken” with my car, I can’t help but smile. These simple experiences are such a large part of what makes this place feel like home, regardless of the season.
And because our community is so wonderfully wooded, fall, and the winter season sure to follow, delivers new surprises. I see these surprises as gifts. Even after 4 years, my eyes still catch new sights suddenly apparent once the trees have shaken their lush green leaves of summer. I am surprised at what I hadn’t noticed and eagerly anticipate the new “find” patiently awaiting my discovery-right here, right inside the gates of LOW.
Until next time…”It’s another beautiful day at the lake!”
Pat Licata REALTOR
Licata on the Lake