Tuesday, June 26, 2018

I Tack Ho'ed So Hard

I know, I know. Every time I say that, you think I can't top the last time I said that.

Well.

I can.

I don't even know why you doubt me anymore.
shame on your doubts
Soooooo this story starts back in January when I visited my sister and we skipped through a tack store whilst tossing dollar bills into the air willy nilly (metaphorically).

One thing I saw that many of you were like OMFG HOW DID YOU NOT BUY THAT was this:
make sexy eyes at otto!

I mean. Yeah. It's lovely. But also like a billion dollars and OH YEAH perhaps you remember how ZB fits in approximately off-the-rack NOTHING.

Plus I happen to know that the thing with Otto is that you can order custom but you have to go through a dealer and there isn't one close to me. Also one thing about me is that I have the attention span of a caffeinated gnat, so custom ordering is not in my wheelhouse. I'm an instant gratification girl.

But then you all probably know Stephanie (say with me: THAT BITCH!) who I legit hung out with at Rolex last year and one day on facebook she started this out-of-control thread about ugly custom bridles which somehow segued into her casually dropping the fact that she works for an Otto dealer.

HOLD THE PHONE.

I did what any responsible tack ho would and casually filed that information away for later.
every day is a good day for rolex pictures

lol jk this is me

I immediately messaged her every detail of what I wanted and asked what it would cost.

She for some reason didn't think I was a tire kicker and got back to me all polite and professional and told me the cost.

We'll leave it vague, but let's just agree that it was enough that as a seasoned tack ho who's used to paying for quality, I most definitely threw up in my mouth and was like NOPE HARD PASS LOL WE ARE NEVER EVER EVER GETTING THAT TOGETHER.
Buuuuuut

Once you know

And you've had some time to get used to it

And then you think about your life without it

I mean.

The mare legit doesn't fit in off the rack sizes, which means 1) finding things for her is impossible and 2) impulse buying strap goods is dead. Also she's the nicest horse I've ever had, so doesn't she deserve the nicest bridle?

And you know. I'm not showing this year, so what better time to buy a ridiculous bridle than now when I'm not paying entries and memberships?
logic. we has it. 

I messaged Stephanie something mature like YOLO (after several weeks, I'll have you know).

Then the wait began.

I was super patient for like the first 38 seconds.

Then it was pure torture.

I think Roxie's (and Halo's!!) mom got so tired of listening to me that she sent me a link to a purple padded FSS bridle for pennies on the dollar on eBay, which I most definitely bought to kill time.
again with the photo edits
I waited. I waited more. THERE WAS SO MUCH WAITING.

THEN ONE DAY
DROP IT LIKE ITS HOT
THE WAITING WAS OVER
I MEAN NO DEFINITELY DONT DROP IT
BRIDLE PARTAY
Except it also wasn't over.
DO YOU SEE IT

SOBBING
I was hoping to hold off on writing this for a while and be like "everything is awesome!" but it's been a week+ and despite repeated attempts to reach out to Otto, I don't have a firm plan or a ship date for the correct browband and it's leaving a sour taste in my mouth for sure.

I mean. I may be small potatoes to Otto himself, but I didn't pay $$$ for a custom to bridle to get *almost* what I wanted.
mmmm classy
Bright side: I managed to finagle my topline leather browband on and it does look fabulous. And I'm obsessed with the bridle. And it's exactly what I wanted (other than the browband). And it looks fabulous on ZB.
taking a bridle picture
wtf is zb doing

hi zb

yeah now it's not a bridle pic
So anyways. It's in progress and after waiting as long as I did, I am not thrilled to be waiting longer.

Otoh, the bridle is gorgeous and I do not regret a cent.

#goshopping

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Much Needed ZB Update

I haaaaate blog posts that start out by apologizing for not blogging, so I refuse to do that to you guys. 

HOWEVER. 

Things have been happening. 
always toodling
blogger meet up!
riding lessons!
definitely my latest zany idea in progress
Plus the weather here has been to-die-for (too soon?) and so my evenings have been out doing all the things vs staring at my laptop typing away. 

There's a lot going on. Most of it doesn't belong here. 
WHAT R ON ZB
But some of it does. ZB continues to be the loveliest lady no matter what I cook up any given day. I can throw frisbees off her, hack out alone in the rain, or take trips and come home knowing that she's still going to whinny at me and be foot perfect to play with. 

I mean. She definitely has her things. 
yeah i'm growing out her mane

In a last ditch attempt to make me focus, my trainer has started semi-mandating weekly lessons because otherwise she knows I just fuck around and screw things up. Which like. She's right. And it's true. And I like lessons. And lort knows I need the help. 

Plus I don't actually have any lesson media (sorry!), but GODDAMN little lady is coming along nicely when I remember to sit up and ride. I even had a moment of being like "LETS GO TO A SHOW" right up until I remembered how much work that is. 
also my corgi stole the mrs pastures and just strolled past me like this
BRB DYING
Some days we work hard and put in the time with ground work and dressage and concentrated "training".

But a lot of days, I need to just not.
oh and a new photo editor

I hang out and breathe her horsey smell. Play with her mane. Groom her gleaming coat. Watch her munch on her favorite weeds and marvel that a creature like this is here with me.

Some things are good. Some things are not good. 

But we're here. 

Together.

Monday, June 11, 2018

ZB Hits the Mountains!

I board at a fabulous barn with some ladies that inspire me.

And they like trail riding.

And when I got a mid-week text like "let's go to the state park!", I was like "...but the bugs are super bad there waaaaaah" and found an alternate location.
I also found coffee because humaning is hard
Fortunately, they were all on board for an excursion to the mountains. 
ZB always up for an adventure
It's such a different world for me--I can't get my head in the game for horse shows, but I was thrilled to go hit the trails. We haven't hauled out since last fall, but I know I could count on ZB. She's just such a champion. She loads and hauls like a champ, then gets off the trailer like a pro and yet again, led the way for the first chunk of the ride. 

Lil lady has a motor on her. 
tasty bush
Even when we hit some challenges that I didn't quite anticipate, ZB's "NOT R WANT MUM NO" response is to stop and stare at something.

Not lose her shit.

Not buck me off. 

Not leave the county. 
and the skies were completely stunning
We kept everything calm and easy and went out for about two hours over a variety of terrain, including a couple water crossings, plenty of rocks, and lots of different grades up and down. 

It was Zoe's first time in the mountain and OMFG YOU GUYS I COULD NOT BE MORE THRILLED. 
i adore this mare
She led. She followed. She saw dirt bikes and mountain bikes and runners and heard guns and saw wild life and dealt with all of it like an old hand. 

She's still learning how to cross water (cross your fingers for a legit training post tomorrow!), but she made a good effort at everything we tried. 

The best part is just how much fun she is for every step. 

So honest. 

So game. 
goal: ride in the mountains = achieved!
I mean. It isn't even just the riding. It's how Ms. ZB shows up and tries no matter what. Hauling to a new place? 

No probs. 

Tying to a trailer for the first time?

She's got it. 
BOOM
I know basically my whole blog now is like ZB R PERFECT AND I SUPER LOVE HER, but I can't even apologize for it. 

I took my baby horse to the mountains. 

She exceeded expectations and those expectations were already irrationally high on account of how lovely she is. 
remind me i need to break in my new latigo so we can go full old west
I mean. I always say that some day the little lady will have a bad day, and I won't even be able to get mad at her, because she's so freaking perfect most of the time. 

But yeah. 

It hasn't happened yet.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Shindig

Last weekend, I took my pilfered camera to the big recognized dressage show that's local to me.
this blog is about me and my horse but since i took these pictures, i give myself permission to use them
I love hanging out behind the camera because I can take everything in while staying completely invisible.
i am trying to keep pictures anonymous though

I watched people ride beautiful horses. 

Looked at the fancy ribbons.

Enjoyed the flow of well-ridden tests. 

And I'd be lying if I said I wanted to do that right now.

Honestly, just being there made me nauseous. 
PROTECT DOGGO FROM BOOM BOOM SKY
I'm struggling to put into words just how much I enjoy letting ZB be my safe space and my happy place. I show up and just enjoy every moment with her. 

There's no pressure. It doesn't matter if we accomplish something today or tomorrow or next year or ten years from now. 
outfits always matter
I love her bold curves and zero-shits-given attitude. My hearts melts when she whinnies her daily greeting. 

She makes every day a fun adventure.
she is her own lady
Objectively, I want to show again. 

Someday.

Not today. 

Not tomorrow. 
matching sparkle hats!
From now until then, I'll just be enjoying my best lady. 

Monday, May 21, 2018

No One Can Even

Many moons ago, I bought a sprenger mechanical hackmore off of blogger Alanna for a song. When it showed up, I realized it was roughly moose sized (which had I actually read the ad, I probably would have noticed) and yeah, it was never going on a petite Courage face. 

But guess who is moose sized?!
best baby mare!
and yes this is the smallest adjustment
I spent all day Friday watching fancy dressage horses do their thing and yeah, showing still sounds nauseating to me.

So I went back to the barn and threw the new-to-me hack on ZB.
old SB would have been horrified by this look
We did a lap around the outdoor arena, during which I established that ZS Zoebird gave exactly the number of shits about it that you would expect.
SMOOSH JUMP
And yeah. Then we just headed down the ditch bank in evening light for our first solo excursion. 
<3
If it looks magical, it was.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Happy To Be Wrong

I've always watched people having fun with their horses and thought that couldn't be me because somehow I was stuck on this idea that the horse I needed to be competitive in the show arena wasn't the same horse that made me laugh back in the barn. 
dramatic spring skies

And for some reason, I was more focused on the competitiveness than the fun thing.

The whole point of Zoe is that I was really sick of that mindset.

I didn't get two shits if I ever showed again.

I just wanted to have fun.
ZB R SMOOSH DOGGO
Now I have this incredible baby mare who whinnies at me every day when I show up. 

She's game to try every day no matter what we're doing.
best evening plans
She has this beautiful attitude where she's calm and brave and sees new things as fun adventures instead of scary predators. 

Her response to changes in her home environment is to march over and stick her nose on whatever it is and smoosh it. 
her days of fitting through a people door are limited
It's funny how much she's changed my entire attitude. 

She's the most talented horse I've ever had the privilege of owning. I'm closer to my 10 year goals that I have ever been in my life. 

And they matter less to me than they ever have. 
hullo hing leg
Don't get me wrong--I still want to show. I want to get my bronze medal on a horse I trained myself. I want to run one recognized event above BN. I want to have a great outfit. Get a 70%. Know I belong. 

etc
SASS DOGGO
But right now?

It's rather terrible content for a blog, because I enjoy every damn day. I have such a good time. I'm not freaking out and struggling. There isn't really a compelling story line because honestly, everything actually is awesome. 
selfie game even on point
I'm really excited about the lessons we're taking right now because each glimpse at the potential ZB has makes me even more excited for our competitive future together. 
d'awww
But I'd be lying if I said that was the thing I enjoyed most about her.

It's the every day laughs in the barn that make this entire relationship worthwhile.
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