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Showing posts from February, 2018

Recapping 2019

I had many great horsey experiences in 2019!  I am really pleased with how the year went overall; nothing is ever perfect, but both horses are sound, happy, and healthy, which is really what matters to me.

Some of my 2019 goals were met easily or with lots of hard work, and a few of them were utter fails haha.  C'est la vie! Let's recap!

Happy, health, sound
Both mares are doing well in this regard!  Dreamy will be 29 this year, and while she definitely shows signs of her age at times, she overall looks and acts much younger than she really is!  Ellie has really matured this year, filling out as well as mentally becoming more comfortable in her own skin.  As she will be eight this year, I feel like we have moved through the baby phase.

Continue lessons with Beth and Babette
This goal was met and then some!  I took almost weekly dressage lessons with Beth and monthly jump lessons with Babette. Thanks to the Morgan Dressage Association scholarship, I was also able to attend two clini…


There are several random things I have to write about and none warrant their own post, so this is going to be all over the place haha.  You know, kinda like my brain on a normal day!  

First, update on my Tough 1 Hay Hoop Slow Feeder.  As I wrote about, my only minor complaint was fitting the amount of hay I wanted to into the net.  I am happy to report the new, larger net is perfect and SOO much easier to fill.  

Not only did I spring for Ellie's USEA horse registration, I also did her USDF lifetime.  Someday she will be ready for recognized competitions!

Dreamy is looking really great this year as we come into spring.  She wintered well despite the prolonged frigid temps and I am really happy with how she is doing.  She still lopes around her pasture and bosses us all around, so I know she is feeling good.  It is really hard for me to believe she will be 28 this year and this is the fifteenth year I have owned her.

I bought this gorgeous coat with a bit of my Christmas money because…

Perfect Pony Has to Straighten Her Halo

This week is school vacation, which means I am not working yay!  I have had several super rides on Ellie, and the temperature even climbed into the high 60s on Wednesday.  
Of course, it's now back to hovering right around 35, which is more in line with this time of year.  However, we have lost a lot of snow, and the almost bare ground is rather tough on hooves.  This winter's footing has been rough!
So, that means I have to again be creative about where we ride, which leaves us with the 1000' gravel driveway that is finally free of ice and pretty much the only usable area at the monent!  While Ellie has been super easy going about the ring, the pasture, and the back field, the driveway unearthed some interesting behavior!  ;-)
Basically, she is nervous about being in front of the barn (the horse trailer and dump trailer have always been a source of worry to her) and the driveway obviously leads to cougars and other horse eating monsters.  

The nice thing is that even when she…

Product Review: Smartpak Winter Overpant

I am always cold and living in Maine doesn't help haha!  Honestly, I can be cold when it is 70 degrees out.  And while I have a couple pairs of winter riding breeches, I still really freeze when riding in the winter months.  As a kid, I had a pair of winter riding overpants, but they were super bulky, eventually the full seat area disintegrated, and the pants basically fell apart; when I found them in the back of my closet when I moved five years ago, I threw them away.  I don't even know what brand they were, but they were definitely from the late 1990's!

I have ridden plenty of times in my Carhartt overalls, which are certainly warm but they are also rather slippery.  Riding bareback is fine, but the material doesn't work well in a saddle.  I have also ridden in my ski pants before, but if I thought the Carhartt material was slippery, the ski pants were like riding on ice.  Or something like that.  (I am living in an ice rink right now, so everything is ice.  Ice suck…

When Your Hard Work Goes Unnoticed

Many moons ago (like fifteen years, give or take haha), I submitted open competition points to her national breed organization for my Morgan, Sparky, in carriage driving, dressage, and hunter under saddle.  We never won a ribbon (they only place champion and reserve) but we did end up 9th in singles driving one year and 11th in hunter under saddle another year out of hundreds of horses.  I was pretty proud of that and even though we never won any swag, I still thought it was fun to submit points.
When I registered Ellie, I saw they are still holding the open competition program.  Of course, I immediately knew I wanted to submit points and try again with Ellie.
Interestingly enough, this weekend was the annual convention and awards banquet.  After seeing some scuttle on Facebook, from what I understand, they never sent out any preliminary points standings for competitors to double check.  Instead, they just posted final points this past Monday and then everyone left for the convention.  …

Perfect Pony

I feel like a broken record, constantly writing about how good Ellie has been this winter.  Perhaps I will be singing a different tune writing different blog posts this spring and summer once we are in real work and she starts learning more (because obviously I just jinxed myself)!  Either way, she is super cute and I have lots of media lately and nothing exciting to write about.  So look at cute pony pics on this lovely Friday, the last day of work for me until I return to teaching after a weeklong February break!  ;-) 

She definitely needs practice on posing though haha. She just cannot stop herself from following me around.  Lots of failure pics that make her look quite oddly shaped haha.

We finally got a heavy snowfall of close to a foot; normally I am NOT a fan of snow, but it helped cushion and cover the ice.

Product Review: Tough 1 Hay Hoop Slow Feeder

Last fall, I decided to invest in a Tough 1 Hay Hoop Slow Feeder to hang in Ellie's paddock.  I used to hang a regular hay net for Snappy in an effort to get her to eat more of her hay, but I was hoping the hay hoop would be easier (it is - mostly).  I am generally not a fan of hay nets and prefer horses to eat from the ground, but the area next to the barn is sand and Ellie is a HOOVER.  So I figured this would help with any chances of sand colic problems and keep hay in front of her longer.

I didn't do much research before I bought it, which is totally unlike me.  But the price seemed decent and I bought it on Black Friday as kind of an impulse purchase, so I only paid $31.  The only other hay hoops I knew about at the time where the ones my friend, Rachel, uses and I had it in my head they were super expensive (turns out they are not).

I admit, I feed a lot of hay.  Like more than the little Tough 1 hay hoop can realistically hold LOL!  And I am not crazy about the latch, mos…

Thanks, Smartpak!

I know there are varying opinions about Smartpak out there, however I have always had great luck with them and I really have no complaints.  I have always had good luck with their customer service, even when things got messed up on their end and they have always made things right.  I have also used their Smartpak supplements for my horses for over ten years.  Generally, I check Smartpak first when I am looking for a horse related item, mostly because I get free shipping (let's be real, paying for shipping is dumb) and because they ship from MA, I generally get orders within two days.

Back in December, I saw a great deal on the Smartpak Winter Overpants, which were marked down from $76 to $45.  As I just wrote, because I am in Maine, my Smartpak orders generally arrive within a couple days.  However, due to a snow storm (and the fact it was just before Christmas), the order was delayed and I think it took five days.  Honestly, it really didn't matter to me because I wasn't i…

Winter Rides: Like Money in the Bank

I admit, there comes a point where I am totally sick of winter and want to throat punch all the folks who complain how "bored" they are riding in indoor arenas hahaha!  That point has arrived!  ;-)  After the intense frigid temps, we are now in a thaw/rain/freeze cycle that has made everything icy and crappy.  We had a lot of rain and icing overnight Sunday and are looking at a major snow storm upcoming on Wednesday.  I'd give anything to board my horse at an indoor right now LOL!

However, I have been making an effort to try to ride as much as I can, even though I am so over winter it isn't even funny.  Right now, that is about 2-3 times a week, which is better than nothing.  Most of this is at the walk, since the footing is crappy.  But I keep telling myself that at least I am doing SOMETHING and a little something is like money in the bank.  Every time I groom, tack up, and ride, it is giving Ellie just a little more experience and confidence.  We won't be start…