Work Out

What do you get your boys for Christmas which also benefits your strengthening goals? 

Thank You Santa!
What am I doing in my morning workout, to add to my exercise routine?

Is riding your horse a work out? Do you work out to ride your horse? I thought that Dreamer would be good exercise for me, which he most definitely has been. But I also found out that to be the rider he needs, I needed to increase my core strength and aerobic fitness.

(I joke that soon when I get into the saddle, Dream is going to turn his neck and look at me and say, “You been working out?”)

I like core strengthening exercises that I’ve been combining with weight training. I feel they make me more strongly balanced, which can only be an added benefit for horseback riding.

Many have probably seen this:  Pilates for Dressage

 Also, here is an interesting web page with a surprising number of kcalories reported burned in not just our riding, but in the everyday care of our horse(s).

Fitness is made up of three things: strength, endurance (training your heart as a muscle), and flexibility (doing your stretches). An exercise life should include all three.


On a different note, do you know what the  difference is between my Breyer 2010 Thoroughbred ornament and the original?

I’ve painted a blaze on the chestnut! This horse already had Dreamer’s two white back socks, so all I had to do was add a blaze to make him nearly identical. Thanks go to my husband for this thoughtful gift.

Also, a while back Juliette did a post asking if our horses remind us of any animals. It has stuck in my head. In the spirit of the New Year’s Day Parade, (which I will miss) here are the animals I often see when I take care of Dream and his little black mare (Ebony)…

When Dream lies down, he is without a doubt a camel.

May 2007 just a few weeks after coming to us

When he surfs over the top of the partition wall separating the grain room from himself, with just partition wire and his big back all I can see, he is cresting like a whale.

When we are doing ground work and he’s distracted, he is a dragon all lit up:

When the boys watch Jurassic Park and I go out to feed the barn, he looks nothing less than a huge herbivore, no smaller to me than the dinosaurs I just saw:

And of course, Ebony can only be one thing, especially since eating more than her share of hay. She is a big, round, fat for the winter black bear. 

Ebony Spring 2009

Happy New Year~!

Work Out, 1994



There is plenty to write about, but there is only one thing I really want to write about. It is the same thought that comes to me every night as I walk to the house from my last visit at the barn: that peace is free.

It comes to me when every inch of snow is filled with glittering sparkles, a thick white and blue blanket, the stars overhead matching with their own symphony of lights on black background. 

It came to me early on, before Thanksgiving, when I did something I had not done in a while, which was to sit against the wall in Dream’s stall as he ate his hay. I have spent many minutes adding up to hours like this in the past, and have learned his favorite places in the hay. He eats and touches me with his nose once in a while, like a good host, acknowledging my presence. When the temperatures are frigid, I can pull a pile of hay on top of my lap, which adds to my warmth, and hand feed him his favorite strands. We hang out.

Munch, munch, munch. Dream reminds me that the only real time is the present. He reminds me to stop thinking, and just BE.  Doing the work he has always done for me.

Last night, we finished decorating our indoor Christmas tree, but the only one that had pictures taken of it was the outdoor one. I had put white lights on a tree in front of the barn which Seth, “wielding his might ax,” cut for me. Our tree stand is a bucket filled with water which froze the tree trunk upright.

Yesterday there was some melting off the barn roof. The water dripped onto the tree and when I went out at night, it was covered with real natural icicle ornaments…so beautiful, sparkling with the white lights behind them. It was like having an unseen hand decorate your tree for you!

Several hours later at bedtime I told Scott about the tree. Knowing my horse tree brings me happiness, he immediately grabbed the camera and went outside in boots and bathrobe to take pictures of 'The Miracle of the Icicles.'   It’s the little things:

…that get you through the day, or a moment, at a time--  and loved ones to share it with.

I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday. 
I am thankful to have a place to talk horses!

...and to any and all visitors: the time you give is unique, and its value immeasurable. 

~May 2011 be the best equine year we’ve seen yet~ 

 Starlight , 1879
Lexington on both sides 
Foaled May 25

this is the first Starlight registered in the U.S.A.
I chose her for my sister's birthdate, which she shares


Rock Sand

This post was lost recently, so I’m going to re-cap:

Here is a picture of the horses the day our snow started; the one that you know means you will not be seeing grass again until April:

got snow?

 We had three and a half full days of snowfall without stopping once. It was that fluke storm that came through and gave us 29” of snow. Since then we’ve had some melting. The horses at Old Friends were enjoying the snow.

I mentioned our snow stick, a gift from my brother and his wife, which we use to keep track of our ground cover:
snowstick next to bird feeder

road aggregate, superior drainage 
I talked about how we got fourteen thousand pounds of road bed in the fall, which was dumped outside Dream’s stall and near a muddy gate spot, and put inside of Dream’s in and out box stall to raise its level in time for this spring’s thaw. My family crew moved all that road aggregate in a matter of a few hours: pretty amazing.

Dream is now raised several inches higher in his stall, and we've had to raise his water bucket and will probably have to add a wall partition board and raise his inside door, too. 

I had mentioned my beet pulp recipe: soaked in hot water, add some oats and chopped carrots, a tiny bit of brown sugar, cinnamon, and a little of the grain supplement out at the barn. 

There has been plenty to write about, and I keep writing posts and not getting them up here. But I do hope to add an update soon. In the meantime, happy pre-holidays, everyone.

Rock Sand, 1900
Winner of the English Triple Crown, 1903
Damsire of ManO’War (Mahubah)