I spent all the monies.
That's not true actually. I spent some of the monies and saved a lot of it, and in turn- got all the things.
I like things.
And this paycheck had a lovely (LOVELY!!) bonus that came with it and coincided with Black Friday. Funny how that works out...
Unlike most tack whores that I know, I don't actually buy things. Like, ever. Almost everything I own I've accumulated over the last 12 years, mostly from my late middle school and high school years. But in those years I accumulated a LOT of stuff. Mostly because I owned a giant menagerie of horses during that time and got everything from eBay or consignment.
That being said, I've splurged on a few things and paid full price for them (5 way breastplate, XC boots, a few bits) but most other things I've accumulated from really solid deals from eBay (saddle pads, martingales, girths), random rich friends cleaning out rack trunks (thinline pad, assorted reins) or sales at Rolex (See; Stubben gear, BOT gear). Even my saddles I got from a friend and eBay.
Meaning, I utilize thrift at all costs. It physically hurts me to pay full price for anything and I generally don't get things "just for fun", even though I'm very wanty and have a list a mile long of upgrades that would be chill.
Lately though, my list of "things I could really use an update of, but can get away with using the old shit" has really grown. This is a separate list from the "wanty" list.
To name a few, a saddle (barely fits me), half chaps (held together w duct tape), new girths (lost or stolen somehow), dressage bridle that fits B (kinda small), new helmet (7 years old, fallen w it four times), etc etc
But nothing I desperately needed or had to replace immediately. Well, the helmet actually really needed to be replaced. Oops. I can use the saddle I have, for now, like I always have..but one day I would really like to replace it and get one that for ONCE fits me & the horse. The girths I've been using as replacements are old AF and slightly too small for B. And the dressage bridle I've been using is also slightly too small. Just barely.
I think it fits a little too tight around his ears, and the noseband sits oddly on his face. It just doesn't work work for him. But is all I had. And I LOVE it. It was my sweet 16 gift and is from GER. 10 years old almost, but still beautiful. Unfortunately, just doesn't fit B. So I've taken to riding him flat in his jump bridle and B has advised me that he really likes it. Something about the figure 8, methinks.
So where am I going with all this?
I had set out to take advantage of Black Friday deals and to find a jump girth and a new helmet, minimum. If I found a dressage girth, bridle, and half chaps, cool.
I actually found everything but even with the bonus, still have limited budget (dammit).
Thanks to Amanda's list, smartpak gave me a 15% off deal on a new Charles Owen II helmet. I toyed with a new helmet (not a CO) but couldn't bring myself to spend $400 on one. I don't care hat much, and CO has always been my fav. Score on a new helmet for $175! Also, since Smartpak is amazing and magical, since my order was over $75, FREE shipping.
Next up was a girth. I actually needed this since my emergency girth is barely big enough for B. I really wanted to get a Stubbben to match the rest of our gear. If not a stubben, at least a tobacco colored girth, because matching.
See; saddle and breastplate. Who knew I would like orange on orange so much. I don't care if anyone else likes it, I think it looks smashing.
Sadly too, this saddle that currently fits B is not a monoflap. Jankee currently have my monoflap, since that one fits The Pants.
Cue, Riding Warehouse.
I found not only a tobacco colored girth, but a fucking Stubben. It was already on sale from the retail price of almost $200, for about $64
I also found half chaps on Dover for $60 but decided to leave those for the Christmas/birthday list since I already felt really guilty for spending money and my half chaps might make it a little longer.
That being said, I DID find some winter riding boots on eBay, totally unrelated to Black Friday, but still, only $20 shipped.
After that I got distracted while clicking through the list with things I could NEVER afford ($400 breeches) and found something I could afford. BOGO C4 belts!
See; belt. I ADORE C4 and had a 20% off coupon just chillen in my wallet for a rainy day. Amanda's list goaded me into buying yet another belt, and sharing the BOGO deal with my bestie and lessee extraordinaire. I had been thinking how I could use a more neutral belt, since I had a very bright mint belt AND an American flag belt. Can't pass up BOGO and a 20% off coupon. Hell no..
With a little mint, since you always need a little color in your life. And I can always exchange the mint for the white or silver buckles I already have. ALSO got free shipping on this order. What what!
Then, because I'm terrible and by this time had caught the shopping fever, spent a few hours (it seemed like) continuing to peruse the net for deals.
Then I found it.
A stubben, tobacco colored, figure 8 bridle for 70% off retail price of $350.
I had to have it. My mind was racing. I was calculating bills vs the amount of bonus I had leftover for wiggle room. Farrier was coming in two weeks, but I had the majority of my non-equestrian gifts taken care of already and plenty of money left (for once, what).
Texted a few horse friends (S/O to you guys for being enablers), and within the hour it was mine.
I would take the jump bridle and transform that into my flat bridle. The leather is dark enough it could pass for black, but if I wanted to, Amanda (yes, her again) wrote a very awesome post on how to dye leather. Could always do that if I was feeling squirrelly.
I doubt I'll ever sell the black and white dressage bridle, since it was a gift, but I could if I wanted to.
I also already have orange Stubben reins, since the bridle didn't come with them.
The most important thing to me is the fit. I'm hoping that it's big enough for his mule ears.
There's this super soft looking leather by the ears so I'm hoping the princess will find it satisfactory.
I can't believe I spent that much on a bridle ($100), BUT as a friend pointed out, I can sell it in a pinch of neededsince it's a Stubben. But I doubt I'll need to do that ;)
Finally Bacardi gets a bridle of his own instead of a hand me down! Now all he needs is a bridle tag!
I'm literally so excited I could pee.
Now to play the waiting game!