Friday, September 30, 2016

Fall So Hard

I almost didn't write this post because we have just been toodling for a few days while he situates himself and while I know thats riveting boring as shit, I still feel like I need an update for my sake.

His hock is healing beautifully, no lameness and no heat, but the tear duct.....isn't? Kinda? I don't know. Banamine and hot compress isn't helping much to my untrained eye, so the vet is coming back out on Tuesday to check. Doesn't seem to be bothering him much but it is draining like crazy and making me bonkers.. UGH.

Plus, he's starting to go mad being kept in because of the torrential rains we've been having and the cold temps at night. That combined with the flies that are still somehow alive, and the fact he grew a winter coat over night, fall is proving so traumatizing for poor B. How dare I subject him to easy rides with no actual work involved besides walking.


So, we've been toodling. Unfortunately, our indoor arena renovations were scheduled for this week and sadly won't get finished BECAUSE of the rain, so we've had to ride outside. Normally this wouldn't be an issue, but construction is happening everywhere and B just can't some days out in the open.  (for any new readers, our boarding barn moved locations and BO bought a VERY old farm that needed so.many.renovations so construction has been a thing lately) We had a super ride Tuesday night around the property right after a storm broke though. It was crisp and cold (I LOVE IT) and the clouds were stunning over the pine trees. He was pleased as punch to stretch his leggies and walkabout and I enjoyed the massive cropped field next to our farm, avoiding the big snorts (back hoes and whatnot) back at the farm

We repeated a ride like that Wednesday, combined with light light light flatwork (aka, walk and trot for a few min) afterwards. I want to say it was magical, but he was tense AF and not a pleasure to deal with. I gritted my teeth and tried to be steady and forgiving, but its difficult when the fall air has your TB wound up like a crazy horse and he can't even walk nicely on the buckle without losing his damn mind.

You might notice I switched from the hackamore to a regular hunt bridle with a snaffle for now, after his last theatrics pre-vet visit. I think the hack presses on his face just to the point of irritation with the tear duct issues and he simply cannot combined with everything else fall entails. The noseband is super loose, and he actually seemed to like it for the most part.

Even with that though, yesterday he was a shithead. We joked that the clowns that have been running around our town scaring people at night (a REAL thing, google that shit. I wish a clown would.) were hiding in the woods, because he would spook damn near every time we got near that side of the arena. It was frustrating as all get out and I wanted to punch him in his cute nosey.

"Mahm, I would nehvar"
Instead, each and every time he spooked I would push my hands forward and add more leg. Admittedly, over the last two years my hands have gotten grabby when he spooks (for obvious bolty reasons) and I know that does nothing but create more tension.

Doing the opposite of the thing I want to do when he spooks is LITERALLY harder than college algebra ever was, but dammit I did it.

About 100 times.

Talk about a frustrating ride that involved mostly tense walking and some trotting and a lot of half attempts to bolt at spooky tree clowns.

However, I think it was beneficial. Each time he would get McSnorty on me and I would stay super relaxed, push forward (he has a tendency to tense up and trot almost in place when he gets anxious) he would come back quicker and better each time. It was still fucking frustrating beyond belief, but this is fall with a sensitive TB, nothing I can do about it.

"Le flies, le boots, GETTIM OFF MAHM, I'm being tortured"
Difficult, when every other horse in the arena is behaving and doing horse stuff and yours is acting like a dumb dumb....but I have to remember to ride the horse I have THAT day. Small victories are worth it to me. Getting that full trot circle in the scary end of the arena on the bit and relaxed is wonderful, even if its closure ends with the greatest sideways giraffe impression you've ever seen. At least he's coming back to me and not spiraling out of control.

I knew it was coming though. We had an awesome, relaxed summer. Fall signals the beginning of semi-productive and mostly shitty rides of winter. I am hoping though, that this year will be better than last and we can work together instead of against each other.

Fall so hard man.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

What Do Wednesday: Tack Whoring

I think its a well known fact that some of us bloggers have a problem.

Tack whoring. You know who you are. Its OK. I'm one too. Lets make T-shirts.

But seriously, Graduated Equestrian's post made me realize just I have. For shame. I even caught myself perusing ETT last nights for more boots without realizing it. WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME.

It doesn't help that I've owned 7 full grown horses, 3 mini's and ridden many others. This means I've collected quite the array of tack, bits, boots and wraps over the last almost 20 years (holy shit). Even saddles...I've accumulated 5, and only use 2. I guess Yankee uses one as well..but still. 3/5 is ridiculous. I wish I could say they're super nice saddles like Voltaire's ( heart eyes) or some other french leather, but they work and they're Okayish....for now.

However, nothing amounts to the glorious collection of orange as fuck leather that I've been using on B for the last year and a half. So ridiculously smashing.

I know, I know, you all want it, but simmer down.

Seriously though, despite being incredibly gaudy, and on the verge of tacky, I got everything (reins, breastplate, girth, running martingale) for a slamming good deal at the Stubben tent at Rolex and I'm broke enough to not give a flying fuck about leather colors when it comes to saving money. Plus it matched my saddle, so.

You know you love giant orange breastplate. Admit it.

I think for the whole ensemble, including the saddle I purchased of ETT, I spent $800.

However, I am quite aware of how fucking ridiculous the collection looks, especially on an orange horse, so I am on the hunt to class up our act a little for when we enter the rated ring. I can't change the color of my saddle without drastic moves, like a dye job, but its fine. I figured I would go for a more "mixed leather" feel for our ensemble. Like, light and darks, contrasting...majestically. lolz.

I thought I was going to have to spend a shitload of more money to find a show bridle, girth and breastplate, but friends (blogging and in real life) have saved me yet again!

Just look at it. Let the orange blind you!!

Somehow, I've pawned most of my spare tack on ETT for bills, and I literally have 7 nosebands, 2 stretched out breastplates, an assortment of girths that don't fit...and no bridles. But 7 nosebands. How does this even happen?

So I reached out to friends, and they delivered. I now have 2 spare, classier breastplates in my arsenal as well as a slightly darker bridle and reins. I will have to dye the hackamore nosepiece...or just save and spring for a PS hack (SO many fucking heart eyes). LOLOL, yeah right.

the unicorn bridle. I NEED it. The model even look like B. Its fate.
A close friend here in OH also tried to convince me to buy her Otto Schumaker dressage bridle at a super discounted price and I *almost* did. Its GORGEOUS, but I have no use for it. I already have a dressage bridle and we aren't serious contenders in dressage. BUT OTTO, omg, grabby hands.

So besides friends, real and internet, I also scrounge English Tack Trader on FB (ETT) and Ebay. I've been using Ebay less and less since ETT has virtually anything you could ever want at the touch of your finger. The ISO (in search of) function is also wonderful, you can trade items if people are willing, and get things on a bargain if people are willing to negotiate price.

ALL boots purchased on ETT. $10 for hinds. $50 for front Majyk Equipe boots and $20 for ME bells. Fucking winning.

Ebay seems to be flooded more with manufactures selling the item at almost retail price, versus ETT that has lightly used items sold by horse owners. As long as you use Paypal for your exchanges, you're covered and I've only had to wait on a item for more than 2 weeks once. Generally I love it, and on a budget, its amazing. I don't have the luxury of buying brand new from stores or private sellers, and while that would be awesome for exchange reasons or malfunctions, I really can't. ETT is a lifesaver! And an actual obsession and problem for my wallet, holy shit.

We will never be the perfectly matched pair, but I think it doesn't really matter much in the long run. Only matters how you ride in the end, and I am a-OK with that. I really just want a little semblance of put togetherness and for people to not remember me by my glaring orange tack. Sometimes its best to not be noticed in those ways, hahaha.

Tried for 5 minutes to get a pic last night where he didn't look like a giant moose-giraffe, but unsuccessful. This is our "new" girth & breastplate; still need to exchange the bridle and reins out
Regardless, that leads me to my question. Where do you all go when you're in need of a tack item? Do you scrounge and save? Splurge? Beg friends? Send out an SOS on the blogosphere? Hunt for a good deal? Slave to Ebay or ETT? Tell me dear readers, what do?

Monday, September 26, 2016

25 Things About Me

B is off 2 more days, then we will just hack about the farm on a loose rein. Until then, I'm bored, and this looked fun and all we ever do here is talk about horses. SO lets talk about other things. I wanted to do the 3 characters that describe you...but I'm drawing a blank on that one. Viva Carlos posted this a while back and few people have joined in on the rather informal blog hop.

25 things you may not know about me:

I'm happiest when... I’m snuggled up with the boy and the dog, watching my latest Netflix obsession (currently Madmen because I have literally watched everything else. Literally.)

.... Especially If... it’s a COLDDDD fall morning or evening, I have some tea, the windows are open and I’m not too hot hidden away in covers and wearing a big sweater. I’m so basic, and I don’t even care.

Lohanthony might be my spirit animal, IDK

I've always wanted to... Ride horses in IRE

My family and I... could not be more different. I think my closest similarities would be my love for working out, hunting and coffee. That’s about it.

I was a terrible... math student. I STILL am. Its really embarrassing, but I never learned my times tables in 2nd grade and it forever put this mental block in my brain for math. I blame those damn timed tests in elementary school. Children should not be subjected to such torture at a young age. I took REMEDIAL college algebra twice in college and BARELY squeaked by with a C- in regular algebra. Luckily I didn’t need more than that. I wanted to be an accountant, but my school didn’t let you use calculators on exams (WTF WHY, real life does) so I dropped out of that program after the first exam..lulz. But, I can barely function WITH a calculator…so…

My first job was... paid legally or nah? HAHA. Legally, with a W9 and everything, Chipotle. I worked there damn near 3 years. Still obsessed.

I could probably eat Chipotle every day. See above.

Chipotleh is mah lahhyfe

I stole… a clothing item (or 5) from every ex of mine. It wasn’t intentional, but my friends now know me as the unintentional clepto, because I will borrow clothes and forget to return them. Legit forget, I’m no thief. I think half of my winter clothes collection wasn’t originally mine…

I was born on the same day as ... Martin Luther King Jr. Bless up.

My all time favorite movie is... ……. This is difficult. I am a movie buff and have seen everything under the sun. Whenever asked this question I can’t ever truly answer it, since I have a favorite in every genre. HOWEVER, Forest Gump I think encompasses everything a movie should have, and might actually be my fav. War, drama, comedy, tragedy…it has it all.

I do a pretty mean...painting. I was an art minor and actually taught painting for 2 years post graduation.

I'm still mad... that my parents bought my brother a Mac and me a Dell for college. WHY. The unfairness is just so much.

I met my SO…on Tinder. YUP. We are a Tinder success story.

I always knew I wanted a … dog. There is nothing like the love of a dog.

I'm not afraid to... try new things. I will never understand people who stay terrified and always repeat “what if”. Yeah, so? What if? At least say you tried and move on. Take that job. Date that guy. Move to a new city. Befriend that girl. Buy the shoes. Get the guac. Buy the horse. Go on that adventure. That’s what life is about!

I make the best...shrimp and grits. But I can also make a bangin’ breakfast with all the fixin’s and I usually do so every Sunday, because breakfast.

I have almost no... lack of patience. I could quite possibly be the most patient person on the planet. There are worse things than a 2 hour line at the DMV. Life will go on. Its not the end of the world.

I always cry when… the national anthem is played. I’ve been known to legit bawl my eyes out at every 4th of July fireworks.

I'm (now) a Medical Biller but I think… professional procrastinator is more suiting. My best work is done at 1AM the night a grad school paper is due. Whoopsie.

BoJack might also be me

I spent 9 years... in braces. NO joke. 3 surgeries, 2 fake teeth and 9 painful fucking years later my teeth are perfect. I have reoccurring nightmares they get kicked out by a horse too.

I wish my folks... didn’t judge how I spent my grown up money.

At 5 I was deeply in love with... elephants. When my parents said no to a pet elephant, second best was horses.

I believe if everyone ....cared less for themselves and thought of others more the world would be a better place. But we all know everyone is a bunch of selfish bitches, including myself, ayyyyeee

I can't stand… people who are late. SERIOUSLY get your shit together!!! I will cut youuuuu!... this might be the ONE thing I have zero patience for. For real.

Whenever any crime show is on I'll watch it. I've seen every season of every CSI, Criminal Minds, SVU, HTGOWM, Cold Case, Psych, Lie to Me, Dexter ETC at least 3x through ....#obsessed

You are, and its OK because ILY
So there's a very horseless and almost useless post, but it was fun. Do any of you like crime shows, breakfast or fall? Cuz we can be friends.