No, I’m not building a real barn. That would be easy. I’m handy with tools and I’ve been known to use my truck in some unusually creative ways. This new barn is different. It’s a “website with an online membership group” but I think it’ll be more comfortable if I just call it The Barn. Most … Read more
I’ve been thinking about Julie. Cool name, isn’t it? I make no apologies, I was 6 years old and thought it was the best name ever.
“My horse is really sensitive. He isn’t a just a Quarter Horse, you know. He needs special handling.” When I hear something like this, I always peer around the barn to see if anyone else looks like their head is about to explode. Is she saying that any idiot can ride an ordinary horse, but … Read more
There were a few dark years (between leaving home and having enough income to support a horse) that I was earthbound with only house pets. I survived it. Barely. During that horse-less time, a box arrived. It was a surprise parrot -from a friend in Panama. I’m not saying it was a great idea to … Read more
Has it been one of those weeks? Everything that could go wrong–did? We all know how it feels when gravity gets heavy-handed and you begin to feel thick and bound by life. It happens. Maybe you should go to the barn and let yourself be carried a while. If you have a partnership with a … Read more
Namaste is a Sanskrit word -which means it’s very old. Most translate it to some version of “The spirit in me respects the spirit in you.” There is so much in a name. Namaste is also an easy-on-the-eyes, young, Friesian-Arab gelding with a big dressage heart. I have known him for about 5 years and … Read more
The foundation of Dressage for the rider/horse is rhythm. I define that as a balanced combination of relaxation and forward. It sounds deceptively simple. A rider/horse can not sacrifice forward for relaxation, or relaxation for forward. The art of riding is in negotiating the balance of the two in both the rider and the horse. … Read more
… and Grace gives herself a promotion. Dressage borrows lots of language from ballet -after all, we are the dancers of the horse world. Pas de Trois is a dance of three. I have commandeered that phrase to describe riding lessons as a conversational dance between horse, rider and instructor. All three participants have to … Read more
“The threat of Christmas hung in the air…”
The least flattering time I heard this re-incarnation plan was while I was rubbing mineral ice on my horse’s inner thigh. He had torn a muscle and was in his second month of stall rest. The man who said it thought he was Columbus in the New World, and a total laugh riot.
Autumn came this week on the calendar, agreeing with what the great outdoors has been saying for awhile. Evening chores have been so Maxfield Parrish; ethereal colors with a sweetness in the air, and a near-full moon over my prairie. The horses are changing coats for winter.
“How long do you think you will have to take lessons?” Twenty years ago and I can still hear that tone in my mother’s voice. She wondered why her adult daughter -after a life of riding- would need lessons.
Riding can be a form of meditation in the best sense- a release from day to day drama and worry. It’s amazing how much better the air is just a few feet above the ground, and moving through the air at a trot really does give you the feeling that sheets get- blowing dry on … Read more
When I was younger, I always carried sugar in my pocket because it felt so great to have my horse come to me. It was cheap vanity- until the inevitable day that I forgot to fill my pocket. My gelding stood on my 5 year old foot, begging for a treat I didn’t have. I … Read more
“Add to that- horse, donkey, and llama–okay, even the goats.” –Me This was a week of sharp-edged experiences. The world lost a great horse this week, a mare in our extended family. Toushay was from an era of excellence and integrity: she was athletic, smart, funny, and any human’s total equal. She was not my … Read more
“I only trail ride.” Every time I hear someone say this, I am impressed. To be prepared for every eventuality that can come up while out on trail, a rider has to have a level of horsemanship that is to be envied. Of course that level of ability is rare. Most of us are looking … Read more
This week a self-described moody rider requested a blog- about moody riders. To tell the truth it has been an erratic week at the barn. Each rider had their best and worst rides, in rapid succession. Passion is the green light, frustration is the red light, and the ensuing crash in the intersection can make … Read more