Friday, February 27, 2015

Ammy Hour: Meet Amanda!

Here we go with another round of Ammy Hour! I really do this series for myself--I love learning about the hardworking people like me behind the blogs I read.  This week I'm talking to the voice behind the 900facebookpony. Without further ado, here's the tack-ho-est of them all!

1) You’re at dinner with work colleagues. How do you introduce yourself?
I am lucky that my job doesn't really require face to face contact with customers, because lets be honest I'm not a big people person and I'm not very good at hiding how I feel about things (the "omg I'm so bored, kill me now" face might not go over well). But if I DID find myself forced into a work dinner, I'd probably just keep the chit chat limited to work related things and say as little as possible until I found the right moment to run away.

I do not know this horse
Sooo I guess my introduction would be "Hi, I'm Amanda." and hope that they were a good talker because unless it's about horses I've got pretty much nothing to say after that. Normal people are really confusing. Socially awkward? Me? Never. The only exception to that would be if it was a horse related work thing or if I knew the person was into horses - that's an entirely different ballgame. I can, and happily will, talk about horse stuff all day. And probably sell them something in the process, because I love stuff. This is why I need a horse related job...

so classy

2) But what you really meant to say was this:
"OMG I'm so bored, kill me now"? or "Unless you like horses you're of no interest to me"?

3) Tell us about your horse and how you met him.
Henry is a coming 8yo TB gelding that I found on facebook and purchased sight unseen in Dec 2013. I got really lucky, he's fantastic and such a good boy. He's also a total goof with TONS of character... there's never any question as to what his opinion is about anything.

um yes.

4) What do you do with your horse?
We started off in the jumpers but after a spur of the moment XC schooling adventure he seemed to be really into it, so now we're eventing.

5) Where are you going together?
I'm hoping to qualify for AEC's this year. If not we'll move up a level and just do more schooling events to save some money but keep putting miles under his girth. He's still pretty green, all things considered.

6) What does success with horses look like for you?
For me, a horse that has become better since I acquired it is a "win" in and of itself, because I always buy green ore remedial ones. I think it's really fun to bring them along and see what they turn into. At the end of the day though, as long as I'm having fun with whatever I'm doing, and as long as the horse is happy, I'd consider it a success.

off to the lotto!
7) How do you finance the addiction?
Sadly (and boringly) I have a "real job", I'm in charge of managing the repair and return department of a company that makes monitoring equipment for gas and oil pipelines. It pays the bills and my schedule allows me to get out of work early enough to ride, plus I get a fair amount of vacation days since I've been there for a decade, so I can't complain that much. I am really keeping my options open though for something horse related... I've worked in tack shops and was a barn manager for a while when I was younger. Eventually the right thing will come along at the right time. Or I'll win the lottery. Until then, it's the "real job".

8) What does your support team look like?
My fiance is pretty supportive from a distance, in that he doesn't complain nearly as much as he rightfully could and once or twice a year I can talk him into going to the barn with me. I'm totally ok with that. Otherwise I have a really great group of friends that are really enthusiastic, supportive, and helpful. Very grateful for every one of them.

9) What are your horse keeping arrangements?
I board at a small barn owned by my boss's boss - his wife is also an eventer. Small world. There's just a handful of boarders (which I love) and it's nothing super fancy but the care is second to none, the people are great, the price is great, and it has everything I need. Absolutely no complaints.

this is not Henry
10) How often do you ride?
When it's not raining ALL WINTER LONG (sorry, sensitive subject), 5 days a week is my average. It's hard to squeeze in a normal work day, fairly regular overtime, the horse, the gym, regular life stuff, and a relationship, but I do the best I can. Sometimes something has to give (ok, usually something has to give) and I'm perpetually borderline exhausted but that's ok. I think that's really just the way of life of the working amateur rider, and something all of us have to figure out how to deal with.

aside from being kickass
11) What’s the single biggest thing that helps you achieve your goals?
My support group. Honestly, there's just NO WAY I could do any of this even semi-successfully without them. That and I'm hella stubborn, borderline crazy, and really love a challenge, so I think this sport suits my personality really well.

get that trahkener
12) If there was one thing you could say to people getting ready to join the ranks of riding (or re-riding) adults, what would it be?
Welcome to your new obsession. We're all mad here. ;) Honestly though, don't be afraid to ask questions. I think sometimes people are intimidated by this sport and it's people because because we can be so intense. But we all had to start somewhere and if there's one sure thing it's that horses will make fools out of even the best of us - they're a great equalizer. I would also try to say yes to as many opportunities as you possibly can. This is very much a sport where you learn by doing, and one little thing can lead to another little thing, which eventually leads to big things. Another really important point - team up with a professional that you really trust. I see so many people get the wool pulled completely over their eyes and taken advantage of by unscrupulously opportunistic trainers. Be smart and trust your gut, never allow yourself to be led around blindly.

requisite adorable picture
13) Bottom Line:
I can't imagine my life without horses and riding. They've taught me so much about life, relationships (both human and equine), compromise, hard work, dedication, discipline, courage, humility, failure and success. They've shaped my entire character as a person. No doubt there has been a lot of blood, sweat, and tears along the way, but a million more smiles and laughs and warm fuzzies. There's just something about it that makes me feel whole. It's not an easy sport by any means, and being a working amateur in some ways makes it even harder, but it's worth it.

Many thanks to Amanda for participating. If you don't follow her already, run right over to the 900facebookpony and hob on that bandwagon STAT.

Want to be a part of Ammy Hour? Know someone who should be interviewed? Contact me and let's chat!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

That One Thing (I Can't Stand)

I think it's time to clear the air a little. I hear one common complaint in the horse industry that I think is perfectly ridiculous. It comes up most often when a horse person is exposed to some new piece of technology or equipment. It bugs me every.single.time. Here is is:

"But that's not traditional!"

That really grates on me. Constantly. Not only because "we've always done it that way" is a goddamn stupid reason to continue doing something, or even because most of the "tradition" that we espouse is really just new-fangled shit from like the 1950s USA, but because it's an excuse to turn our brains off.

stolen from the internet
Sometimes, a thing is passed down through generations because it is true and good and helpful. Just as frequently, stupid-ass-shit is passed down. Unless we devote ourselves to sorting through what we've been handed, we are just abdicating responsibility for the welfare of our horses, and I have a massive problem with that.

horsemanship means rearing
Blindly kowtowing to "tradition" reeks of irresponsibility. It's how we justify drugging horses "it's always done that way", why we wear a mid-Victorian gentleman's outfit to show "it's sooooo classy", and it even explains rust breeches "this was big in the 60s". It's a recipe to not get taken seriously as a sport and a perfectly fantastic way to get killed. Tophats, anyone?

And don't even get me started on those "I do classical dressage" people. DA FUQ CAN YOU READ???? Look back at the old pictures. Look at the literature.

it's tradition, yo
Hell, look at the Spanish Riding School. Do you know how they produce horses and riders? It takes DECADES. Given that most people do not have decades, those "classical" adherents that people so admire, pretty much just did this:

Yeah. Giant bit, nasty ass spurs, mouth gaping open. I'm a little surprised they left the bloody flanks out of the portrait. It's not great training, but HOT DAMN you get false collection in a hurry.

And that's traditional.

And I think all of us can agree that it's wrong.

someone get this man a Heisman trophy
If that's so obviously wrong, why is it ok to blindly cling to stupid shit like evening wear? It was practical for Victorian gentlemen who had servants to dress them and hand them their horses and then change them and dress them again to eat a dinner that they had nothing to do with preparing.

I dunno about you, but I have none of those things. AND YET we just keeping on keeping on with asinine things like white breeches and WOOL (freaking wool. wtf.) coats and acting like that's A OK. I mean, doesn't everyone dress like phantom of the opera to play their sports? I swear the Seahawks... no wait maybe Baseball, nope, definitely European football OH WAIT LOL it's only us idiots on horseback who have a thousand pound animal that lives in dirt who try to prance around in wildly impractical clothing.

yeah imma just use this pic everywhere

Not all traditions are bad. Not all new ideas are fantastic. HOWEVER. When evaluating new ideas, it is imperative to judge them on their own merits instead of hold them up to the questionable light of tradition.

There are plenty of reasons to question new ideas and make sure that they are in the best interests of your particular horse before adopting them, but tradition should really never be one of them.


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Old Cripple Woman Here

shown: flex composites
Soooooo about a week ago, I popped on the jump tack. I had switched my regular irons (equiwing composite flex model) to my dressage saddle and just borrowed some non-flex composites for the jump saddle until I settle the whole novelty stirrups dispute. ;-)

All I was planning to do was a little two point for myself and trot through some raised cavaletti for Courage.

Off we went.

For like 45 seconds.

Just us looking attractive
My ankles started burning. My thighs seized up. I made it maybe two minutes AT THE POSTING TROT before I had to walk and drop my stirrups to let my legs recover.

The whole ride was probably 25 minutes. More than 50% of it was walking without stirrups.

When I got off, I was crippled. My legs burned all night and my ankles were about to peace out.

I mean, I knew I hadn't ridden in jump tack in a few weeks, but this seemed a little extreme. I spent YEARS without sitting in a dressage saddle. Why this? More importantly, how in the world was I going to jump if I couldn't even trot a lap around the arena without wanting to die?

Let's look at this pic for a while
I wanted to flat in jump tack Saturday just to see if I'd have the same problem. It was cold and I also wanted to hide in the tackroom for a while, so I switched my flex irons back over to my jump saddle.

And um.


It was totally 100% fine. Walk/trot/canter, whatever. No pain. No burn. No failing joints. No old lady cripple problems after the ride.

I jumped both days in my flex irons and I'm not even remotely sore despite not having jumped since October.

On the one hand, that makes me really happy. On the other hand, I now apparently require flex irons just to stay alive. I'll find out this week whether I can dressage in normal irons without dying. Don't hold your breath, I guess.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

First Jumps of 2015!

canter on a loose rein
Courage and I have very religiously dressaged all winter. A good chunk of that is me being hella lazy and not wanting to drag jumps into the indoor, but we've been riding outside all February.

Anyways. The point of boarding at a dressage barn was to dressage and have Courage learn how to use his neck and back with the idea of it translating over to more effective jumping form.

I will admit to getting sidetracked from "HE IS A SHOWJUMPER" to "he is a jumper who also does dressage", but nothing has even remotely tempted me to think XC was a good idea again, so eventing is still off the table. I think it's staying off the table.

ANYWAYS. The point of my rambling is that Micaylah came to the barn with me on Sunday and played jump crew for our first "jumps" of the year.

We have trotted and cantered over poles a couple of times and Courage hasn't even tried to leap through raised cavaletti (OMG BIG CHANGE), so I thought he was ready to pop over something teeny a few times and see where we were at.

Bear in mind, last year he jumped pretty much every jump like it was 3'6", which made for epic pictures, but some dicey riding.

no. i cannot explain what i am doing here.
Also bear in mind that I have not jumped a jump since October sometime. I apologize right now for my position--it was a bit all over the place.

I was really thrilled with Courage. He hasn't even seen a proper jump in months, but he was totally happy to approach, jump, land, and depart in the same balance while maintaining a consistent rhythm. What else can I ask?

I wasn't sure how Courage would respond, but he was fabulous, even placing down after our (teeny) fence instead of leaping into the stratosphere. I was also really, really pumped that I was stone cold the whole time without a single case of nerves.

That, my friends, is called WINNING.

fun angle ftw
After that fun time, Redheadlins and Alyssa came out to jump crew and document, respectively. I had a pretty grand plan for the day--grids were our nemesis last year (oh god let's not go there), but Courage had been really, really steady through recent cavaletti sets and after watching him be unimpressed and place down after tiny fences...

Well. We had to try. 

Suffice to say, it was a total success.

And yeah, of course there's video!

hullo position
I still see things I want to work on in my riding (obviously...), but I'm really thrilled with my position and release over the oxer and the fact that I'm not interfering with Courage's head at all. That's a biggie for him, so it has to be a biggie for me. ;-)

More important is the part about Courage. Look at him. OMG GUYS HE'S USING HIS NECK. DO YOU SEE IT!!!

Yes. That means our "winter o' dressage" translates to a stunning success in initial trials. The whole goal was to change the way Courage used his body under saddle so that he could be a more correct jumper and...



Our last time down through the grid, I had redheadlins set a wee oxer for us just so I could feel like we actually jumped something. I felt a teeny twinge like "this is where I'm supposed to be nervous", but I just wasn't.

I mean. My horse is awesome. I was riding my pants off. It was

We can do this, guys. :-D 

Monday, February 23, 2015

Look Who Had a Lesson!!

look at my horse in his dressage stuff in FEBRUARY 
I won't write another progression post

I won't write another progression post

I won't write another progression post

I feel I should get a gold star. There will be another progression post eventually, but I won't make you look at them every single time I get new pictures.

Anyways. Courage and I had our 4th dressage lesson late last week and Alyssa came out to take pictures. Hooray!!

The thing I love about lessons with C is that I never feel like Courage and I are being pressured and yet after every single lesson, we've made huge strides. It's not exciting to watch or high energy or intense, but Courage and I get little bits of information in manageable chunks.

Since our last lesson, Courage has been more and more willing to work into the contact and stretch down at every opportunity. He's getting stronger and more flexible on the right side, which makes it less like riding two different horses when we change direction.

We introduced some lateral work at the walk--just enough to give him an idea, and releasing immediately after 3-4 correct steps so he thought it was fun and easy.

We had some of our best trot work yet.

There were some lovely moments in left canter, some nice moments in right canter.

Ok fine, I made it a progression post.


mmmm stretchy trot his hard direction
Here's the thing though--there isn't a ton of visible improvement between January and February (imho ymmv). What makes me excited is what was a really fantastic moment in January is becoming the new normal in February.

Now Courage can do awesome things like this.

showing off that hock action

And this.

look who can soften his body in the canter!
And even this:

So we're doing a lot. We're improving a lot. I'm really thrilled with how my little bay horse is progressing.

I'm not super thrilled with my position, but eh, could be worse I guess.

you'll know I've arrived when I post a canter right picture
I'm hoping to get Courage going back over fences again this week. I'm excited to see how he'll be with his new understanding of using his body. We're obviously keeping up the dressage lessons and I'm not ruling out any dressage shows. ;-)

I dunno, guys. When I'm dressaging, I have so much fun with dressage and when I'm jumping I have just as much fun. Problems of having a fantastic little horse, I guess.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Ammy Hour: Meet Alli!

I love this picture
We're back on track with Ammy Hour! I know I've said this before, but I really meet the coolest people doing this series. This week I'm talking to Alli from Ponytude about life as an Ammy with a real life pony. Allie and Dino are always a well matched pair and I love reading about them each week. Without further ado, here's Alli!

1) You’re at dinner with work colleagues. How do you introduce yourself? Hey guys, are we getting appetizers? I think we should get appetizers. And margaritas. Let's stop talking shop and read the menu. There are only four of us in the entire company, so we all know each other pretty darn well!

let's just agree Alli has great pictures
2) But what you really meant to say was this: Yes, I'm a real estate agent, no you won't see my face plastered all over shopping carts, billboards, benches, or buses. I refuse to be obnoxious or pushy, and I also serve as the company IT Department, Marketing Department, and Professional Sign Installer. I mainly sell horse farms, and the best part of my job is the crazy horse people I get to deal with on a daily basis.

3) Tell us about your horse and how you met him. Dino is a 16 y/o German Riding Pony. I first met him in college when he was assigned as my senior year special training project, and he was a total and complete monster. He was famous for his tantrums. But for some reason we just clicked, and I knew that eventually he would come home with me. Something I heard a lot from my classmates was, "Wow, that pony LOVES you." 2 years after my graduation he was retired from the program because he was too badly behaved to be a lesson pony. Whoops. I adopted him, and we've been together ever since! We (creepily) have the exact same stubborn, independent personality, and he's taught me so much over the past few years. Dino is definitely my equine soul mate, without a doubt.

4) What do you do with your horse? Dino and I just started eventing this past summer at the Elementary level, and we both love it! We recently found a fabulous eventing trainer as well, and she's really helping us improve. We also enjoy trail riding, riding western, going to clinics, and having grand adventures together. I love dressage, Dino is not so keen. He much prefers the trail riding and the jumping. We just pretty much do whatever seems fun at the time.

5) Where are you going together? I'm hoping to run BN this year, and maybe one day we'll go Novice. But other than that, Dino and I are just going to continue life as friends and partners and have fun together.

um yes. hello dino.
6) What does success with horses look like for you? For me, success with horses is tied to constant improvement. I may not be able to show every weekend or take lessons twice a week, but I'm dedicated to making myself and my pony the best we can be. If we are both improving and growing steadily, I feel successful.

7) How do you finance the addiction? Real estate is a funny business - it's feast or famine money-wise. Thankfully I'm married to a husband who has a full time IT job that easily covers our regular bills, and I work my butt off at the barn to drastically reduce my board bill. Shows, lessons, major tack purchases, and clinics are all carefully budgeted for, or I wait for a commission check to do or buy something special!

8) What does your support team look like? My husband is my biggest supporter, hands down. While he does ride too, I'm definitely the more hardcore equestrian in our household. Michael knows how much horses and riding mean to me, and always encourages me to spend time at the barn, seek out new opportunities, compete, and learn. And, yes, he also fully supports all of the big-ticket purchases that go along with this expensive habit! I frequently hear, "I want you to have nice things! Dino deserves the best." Yes, ladies, I know you're jealous. I also recently started riding with a GREAT trainer who totally 'gets' the Pony Brain, and I work with an incredible sports psychologist a few times a year. I also couldn't do it without my wonderfully supportive equestrian friends, who are there with me throughout this wild journey.

9) What are your horse keeping arrangements? I keep Dino at a small private boarding barn - at its fullest we have 12 horses there, but right now we're down to 7. He lives outside because that's where he's happiest. Lucky for me, that's also the cheapest option! I work off the majority of my board by working several feeding/turnout/stall shifts each week. I'm also able to completely dictate my pony's diet and management, which is HUGE for me. I consider myself to be a very knowledgeable horse owner, and I'm not OK with a trainer or barn owner telling me how to best manage my pony. In the next few years, I hope to buy a small farm of my own and take Dino (and some friends) home!

10) How often do you ride? I try to ride 5-6 days a week, weather and schedule permitting. The great thing about a career in real estate is that my work schedule is EXTREMELY flexible. My boss and all of my teammates (and most of my clients!) are also horse people, so it's cool if I have to re-arrange my workday in order to ride or meet the vet or farrier. Unfortunately my barn doesn't have an indoor, so in the winter 5-6 days a week drops down to 1 day a week. If I'm lucky.

this pic=win
11) What’s the single biggest thing that helps you achieve your goals? My passion for performance is the biggest driving factor in achieving my goals. While I may not be the second coming of Karen O'Connor, I am very serious about being the best rider I can be. Riding is something I am extremely dedicated to and passionate about, and I work my ever-loving buns off to perform as well as I possibly can, limits be damned!

12) If there was one thing you could say to people getting ready to join the ranks of riding (or re-riding) adults, what would it be? WELCOME TO THE NUTHOUSE! Just kidding. Not really. We're all crazy here. Be prepared to spend more money than you thought you'd ever spend on a hobby, be humbled, have fun, stay safe, and ASK QUESTIONS! The learning curve is steep when it comes to being a knowledgeable horseperson, and the best way to climb that mountain is to ask question after question after question!

Admit it: they're adorable
13) Bottom Line: Even if riding and training horses isn't your main source of income, you can still be heavily involved in this incredible world. If riding is a priority for you, you can make it happen. Do your thing, do what's right for you and your horse, and if it's not fun and rewarding, DON'T DO IT! Horses are incredible and they bring so much depth, richness, and joy into our lives. If you feel passionately about horses, follow that passion and you'll never be sorry!

Many thanks to Alli for participating!! Know someone who should be featured? (Including yourself!). Contact me through email or the comments!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

The Trainer Talk

i need jumping lessons again
This is a really sensitive topic that I have skirted around without ever addressing head-on because it's hard. The horse world is really small in real life and even smaller online. I am well aware that everything I write is archived for posterity by various sources and I'm occasionally surprised when I find out local people who I barely know in real life actually read my blog.

Or trainers. Yes. Your trainer very likely has read your blog. Think about that.

However. I think it's important to say something about trainers and horses and goals and responsibility.

yeah don't want to do this
Not all horses are the same. I tend to pick short-coupled hot horses who need help with relaxation. As such, I like to ride with trainers that help my horse relax, go in a rhythm, and stay focused. If my horse ends a lesson more tense than he started, that lesson did not help my horse progress.

But if you ride a colder (draft cross, pony something, wb) horse, all that is out the window. A colder horse needs to be spiced up a little. They need to be pushed mentally. They can handle more pressure and it takes a different ride to get the reaction you're looking for.

xc doesn't call my name
So the trainer that is a wash with my (short, hot) horse could very well be a stunning success with the type of horse who needs some motivation to get through an hour.

It's not a perfect 1:1 ratio. Some trainers are good with lots of kinds of horses and that is really admirable. Some trainers are good with one specific type and that's fine too. Some trainers really need to quit and do something else. (Noted: don't ride with these people).

But all that to say this: Just because someone is a trainer doesn't mean they should be blindly trusted. We as owners and riders need to be attuned to our horses enough to recognize what they need. My thoroughbred needs relaxation. Annye is more interested in a trainer that can lighten her horse horse up and make her more active.

A lot of this has to do with my goals--if Courage was in a program with a trainer that wanted him really reactive, he'd get to the point where he was unrideable for me. My goal with Courage is to have a ton of fun on my horse and do everything, so that would make no sense at all. If he was an Olympic prospect who I had no intentions of riding, that program would probably be just fine for him.

achieving all my goals
It's on me as the rider and owner to be proactive about this. I need to know what my goals are. I need to be in tune with my horse and proactive about his needs. If that means upsetting the apple cart by changing trainers, I need to be willing to do that.

So that's the barometer I tend to use--at the end of a lesson, is my horse closer to achieving my personal goals or farther away?

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Taming the Tack Ho

these pictures make me swoon
Or "How PS of Sweden Made an Honest Woman Out of Me"

I've always been candid about my status as a tack ho. I love tack, particularly boots and strap goods. I buy a lot of it. I sell a lot of it. I love the turnover and the thrill of always having new things. I love knowing all the different brands and leather types and colors and options. I LOVE ALL THAT.

And then Amanda (don't be her friend--you can't afford her) itroduced me to PS of Sweden. I started out innocently enough--I paid about $170 shipped to get the Flat Out Revolution bridle. I was enamored with the bit clips and the look and I think $170 is a relatively inexpensive bridle, so why not?

so simple. so perfect.
Here's the problem.

I absolutely fell in love with this bridle. It's so convenient and so well designed. I didn't 100% love the leather right out of the box, but it improved a lot with care (I am the best at care) and the details just made it all up to me. The clips. The crown. The reins. The lack of a throatlatch (dumbest strap ever). And so on. Instead of being just another bridle in an admittedly good collection, it became my go-to piece.

That's pretty normal for a new bridle and me. What's not normal is that instead of letting my eye continue to wander, I chose my next bridle from the PS lineup as well. (Noted: as a tack ho, I buy shit pretty much constantly. I sell at about the same rate, so I usually have 4-6 bridles on any given day.)

looking so dramatic
Enter the High Jump Revolution. I wanted it. I needed it. I bought it on a super sale in a package deal with a breastcollar. Honestly, I wasn't sure what I would think. The sale meant that I had to buy a color that I historically don't like (chestnut).

And then it showed up. In case you're wondering, the leather on the higher priced PS bridles is substantially nicer than their budget options. (And they're upgrading all of it this month, so hang in there). Sigh. I loved the bridle. The design and detailing was even cooler than my Flat bridle and it's to the point that I even like the color.

chestnut and black and happiness
Like I legit ride in my havana jump saddle or my black dressage saddle with a chestnut leather bridle and I don't even care because I love the bridle so much. HOW WHY THAT IS TACK HO HERESY.

So anyways. I have some priorities other than buying tack this year (YOU GUYS I AM ADULTING SO HARD RIGHT NOW) so I've been staying off of tack groups (except to sell) and tack store websites and whatnot in an attempt to stay focused. But then PS had a 15% off sale in honor of winning a cool industry award and I follow their instagram and I really do want a dressage bridle.

it looks so classy
But I also want to adult.

But dressage. And hoing.

Omg. The struggle was real until hubs stepped up and offered to get me the dressage bridle of my dreams for Valentine's Day. He wins Valentine's Day. I was completely not expecting that since I really don't believe in celebrating hallmark holidays.

And yeah. Here I am with three PS bridles. I don't look at other bridles anymore. I don't browse all the latest tack catalogs looking for innovative features. I don't know how to say this next bit of tack ho heresy, but even the French saddle makers' strap goods have lost their luster to me. (Not saying I wouldn't take one if the opportunity came up, but I'm no longer looking).

so much ps
I really don't know how this happened. I'm a PS girl.

I don't get paid to say that. I don't get swag or discounts or anything, which wtf I totally should. But whatever. I've found bridles that I believe in. I have three (3!!) of them now and I'm happy with them. I don't even have that twitchy urge to sell them and get something else. I'm actually having that urge a little bit about some of my other bridles that I was planning to hang on to.

I'm already planning my next order. I need a throatlatch for dressage showing and a sparkle browband and possibly spur straps (but not til next month because adulting).

Guys. I don't know what to say. I've settled down and gotten boring.

Oh, and don't even get me started on what Tori did to me. Linens are in my sights now too.
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