Monthly Archives: May 2012

The Weekend!

This past weekend, I finally go Tango in the show pen. We showed in halter, two showmanship classes, two English pleasure classes, and one western pleasure class. We placed 2nd in showmanship and 4th in everything else the rest of the day. Considering I didn’t ride her in the arena until our first class, she was great. The bleachers, flag pole with a waving flag, and plenty of people didn’t seem to bother her one bit! How’s that for an inexperienced show horse? Our patterns and rides were nowhere near perfect but they were fun. It feels great getting back into the show pen!

A few days before the show, I came up with an idea to make a stall sign for her. Without any real plan in my brain about how to make one, I was able to put together a pretty cool little sign for less than $5.00 and it lasted through the heat of the weekend. I think I’m going to make a couple more for the other horses and see what improvements I can make. Once I have, I’ll post a tutorial!What do you think? Pretty cute…huh? I think the 2nd and 3rd line could have been bigger; maybe next time. I liked the fact I could make it completely custom to me. I don’t think there is any limit to what could be added to this type of stall sign. Plus with the low cost, you could make a new one whenever you want. I also think it would be a fun project to do for a 4-H club!

Clipping Horses and a Spider on my Shoulder.

Last night, I clipped Tango for the show this weekend. It was interesting. First of all, I forgot how long it takes to A. clip with my mom’s evil corn-row happy clippers, B. clip a horse with all white legs, and C. to do the first clip of the year. I had figured I would ride afterward but it was just too late when I finished.

Plus, I was stiff and sore from all the cool ways I had to set myself while doing the clipping. Normally, I  sit on a little stool so I can relax and get out of the way if I have to. I didn’t have that stool though, and didn’t want to get too comfy on the ground inches from my increasingly bored and antsy horse. By the time I was done, my knees and back were killing me. I felt like I had done a million different Yoga positions. If you feel like you need some yoga time…clip a horse with all white legs.

It takes two people to clip my mare’s ears; somebody to hold her down and somebody to do the clipping. She’s not scared of it. No. She just flat-out doesn’t want it done. I’ve tried twitching her, but that resulted in me almost getting knocked out and then having to beat the crap out of her. It’s just easier and less painful with two people. So, I’m stronger and twisted one of her ears while holding on tightly to the chain wrapped over top gums. (This does the trick…and the chain doesn’t need to be held too tight, I think it’s more just here knowing it’s there.)

Like I said, I was standing there, my hands full…when I glanced over because I thought there was hay on my shoulder. It wasn’t hay. It was a spider. OK…it was a Daddy-Long-Legs but a big, thick one that was a weird color. I very calmly alerted my mom (who was doing the ear clipping) to GET IT OFF ME! She made a funny scared sound and swiped it off my shoulder.  Heebie-Jeebies. This was my third run in with a spider in the last couple weeks. They have not been good experiences.

But when all is said and done, I have clipped up horse ready for a show this weekend.  And I am alive.  I had one more spider incident today at lunch. It was crawling on me. I don’t know why they have it out for me right now!

Horses, Horse Showing, and Boyfriends

Me, Milo, and Todd last year on Milo’s birthday!

Todd won me over when he actually came out to the barn to ride with me, unlike guys before. Oh sure they say they’re interested and of course they want to come out and ride! If a guy doesn’t keep that promise, I have no time for him.

So like I said, Todd won me over by following through.

He had no idea what he was getting himself into.

His first barn experience was pretty hilarious. I forgot to mention the mounting block is a bit wobbly. He bit the dust before he ever got on the back of Ozzy. Later, I learned he thought he’d ruined his chances with me. I personally, thought it was HILARIOUS and was just happy he still got on and rode around.

That was a few years ago now. Todd has been pretty lucky when it comes to the horses and horse shows. I haven’t been doing much the last couple of years. School and, yes, Todd have been major distractions. Not to mention lack of money to show and get my horse and myself properly trained. This weekend, I plan on debuting Tango in western pleasure and english pleasure. Plus, showmanship and halter of course which she’s been in. It’s not going to be pretty but oh well, I just want to get in the show pen again!

Todd will actually have the weekend off for once and has promised to be there for the show. This is where it gets good. Today, he asked, “What time does the show start?” I said, “eight or nine.” He replied, “Oh. Ok. Well if I get back in time from that tour, I’ll come watch you show.” I laughed because he will be back from the tour by 10 am. I said, “Todd, horse shows go on longer than a couple of hours. They last all day.”  He was sort of confuse, having never been to a horse show for the whole time. He asked a few other silly (to me) questions about it but still promised he’d be there.

Minus catching the tail end of a few random open shows, he doesn’t have much experience. He was also bewildered by the prep time the day before a show. I’ve told him many times but this is the first time it directly impacts his plans.

Do you think he has any idea that he will be carting around my bottle of water, fly spray, grooming rag, and a brush all day? Or that it’s supposed to be 90 degrees and I expect him to suffer the heat right alongside me? When we first started dating, I told him the horses are non-negotiable. period. forever. He was ok with it. He’s offered to be there for the shows, the stall cleaning and everything. I’m not sure he really knows what he’s gotten into yet, but he’s about to find out.

Horse people are a special breed. We go to bizarre lengths or for blue ribbons, points, and belt buckles. Unless you’re a showman, we are a mystery. I think I will enjoy making fun of him when he whines about the heat or boredom, or being tired after the day. He will finally…begin…to understand horse showing.

Outfit Planning & Fun with Photoshop

I’ve been a bit bored this afternoon waiting for the ‘dilation’ in my eyes to go away from my eye appointment. In my spare time, I’ve been playing around with Photoshop, figuring out what outfit I want to wear for an open show Memorial Day weekend. So, I took an existing photo in a magazine and turned it into an illustration, which I then colored in like a coloring book. It was fun. I can now picture how the outfit will look on Tango and myself 🙂 Plus, I now have a cool little illustration of us…and how I hope we look at the show!

 

I plan on wearing a nice pair of dark wash, mid-waist jeans with a black hat, black boots, and a new western shirt I just bought. It’s bright and floral, very fun for an open show. Unfortunately, I bought a size too big so I need to figure out how to get it tailored.

Summer Goals & Getting in Shape

I am terrible about exercise and eating right. I hate running, or anything that seems like exercise. I get really bored, really fast. As far as eating goes…if it’s any food other than mushrooms or peas, I will probably eat it; from leafy spinach and Brussels sprouts to potato chips and doughnuts. This makes getting in shape and eating healthy a real challenge. I’ve managed to not gain any weight in the last couple of years but I haven’t lost any either. My show clothes are still too tight and going out of style.

Big goals, like I want to be a certain weight or I’m going to ride an hour every single day, just don’t work for me. When I screw up, I give up. I need goals that are fun. This summer getting in shape is a priority (as I always say…) but so are few things that will be fun to work towards. 1. Being able to jump on Tango bareback. I used to be able to do this with Milo who is a quite a bit taller. I tried it with Tango the other day and only made it half way up before I felt like I had pulled every muscle in my legs. Ouch.

So I need to work on my legs, which I should being doing anyway to improve my riding skills. I’m lazy. Running isn’t going to happen on regular basis. Riding helps, but some days I can’t get to the barn. Thanks to Pinterest though, I’ve found a couple of sets of leg workout that feel good, actually work, and I don’t mind doing every day. I even do them twice a day on occasion. The stretching that goes into the exercises really feels good after sitting in the lab all day or after a tough ride. Here’s what I’ve been doing:

I’ve just started looking into the “Blogilaties” channel on Youtube, after discovering it for the first time literally 4 minutes ago. It looks helpful! I’ll have to examine it closer. Anyway, try the two sets I’ve listed for a couple of weeks. I’ve noticed a difference! Oh and I have other goals too…like riding more and showing. I’ll get to those later, though.

 

Fit to Ride: Because there are no blue ribbons at the bottom of that bag of potato chips via HORSE NATION

Great, short post about “falling off” the healthy band-wagon! Sharing motivation is a great way to STAY MOTIVATED and to forgive yourself when you get off track with your goals…horse or health wise! (It happens to me a lot)! Enjoy the post! I will be adding my own somewhat healthy post tomorrow. I’ve been doing leg exercises. They’re working! I have a lot to share, but for now it’s off to a 3 hr class of British History (bleh).

Fit to Ride: Because there are no blue ribbons at the bottom of that bag of potato chips « HORSE NATION.

Fun Stuff at National Ropers Supply

I love NRS. I’ve been picking up awesome tack from the store for years now. Amongst my favorite items are a pair of spur straps and headstall/reins set I use on Milo. I am almost constantly adding the products they sell to my wishlist. This spring is no different! I received their catalog last week and proceeded to earmark just about every single page. Sometimes both outside corners were folded because I found so many things I liked!

I’m thinking about picking up this Tin Haul shirt ($74.99) because of the lovely color palate and easy fit. I think it would make a fun show shirt for summer open shows. I’m also intrigued by Wrangler’s Booty-Up American Royal Jeans ($60.00). I’m a Wrangler girl…and have not seen or tried this cut but it claims to lift and define your butt and flatter curves….hmmm. Moving on, I’ve found about half-a-dozen belts I would love to wear which I’ll just list a few of and you can check out for yourself: Ariat’s Blossom Pink and Brown Belt ($99.95), Double J’s Floral Antique Brown Buckstitch ($250.00), A more affordable version of that belt is the Natural Floral Buckstitch Belt ($49.99).

As far as boots go, you might as well just buy me every pair you see. I cannot have enough boots, even if I usually end up wearing my same old half-dead tan boots which need to be thrown out. I am currently set on replacing them with Tin Haul’s “Man Eater Gnarly Shark” boots ($229.00) They are so ridiculous. I love them. Never-mind that I actually need some new show boots and just tough comfortable boots. I still want these.

I’ve  been thinking about getting a garden hat. Nobody sees me in the garden…which means it is a perfect place to go for something really, really crazy, like the Coyote Mexican Palm Hat ($29.99). It could be fun right? Maybe I just have a desire to try it on a laugh, because I’m sure that’s all I would really do with it.

Now to Tack! I don’t barrel race (really, just fun stuff at shows) but I can appreciate a cool saddle of any kind, so take a look at the Double J Brittany Pozzi Vintage Barrel Saddle ($2799.00). It’s pretty awesome. NRS has a cool array of breast collars, bridles, and reins too. This Martin Alpaca/Mohair Breastcollar ($139.99) is one of my favorites.

The entire section of headstalls is amazing, especially for unique tack for training…even a few things you could use in the show-pen. I’m not going to even touch which headstalls I love…it’s pretty much all of them. Go ahead and check them out yourself 🙂 .

They no longer carry the one type of quick change headstall I own but the reins to match it are still available. They’ve become my favorite reins period; tough, heavy, and comfortable and easy to switch from bit to bit. The “NRS Quick Change Western Horse Reins” range from 3/4″ thick at $59.99 to 5/8″ thick at $54.99. Great reins!

To keep this post from getting extremely long, I’m quitting there. My point? Check out National Ropers Supply. They have wonderful products, fast shipping, and great customer service. I am definitely a loyal customer…and I think I’m going to have to put an order in soon!