Anna Blake's Blog (273)

Valentine’s Day and a Goat Tail. I Mean Tale.

Is it too soon to say the word? Sure, there’s more snow coming. You’d be nuts to pack away the tank heaters and long johns. Still, there’s a change in the light and the calendar agrees. The coldest part of winter is past…

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Added by Anna Blake on February 12, 2016 at 9:00am — No Comments

A Reminder about Horse Memory.

The temps were mild. No one was shedding but the geldings were sunbathing flat and I was able to chip away at some ice-age muck. I even found a fly in the house. For a moment, it felt possible that winter would end.

It was a fib; just the first part of the annual bait-and-switch scam that Mother Nature pulls to make riders even battier than usual. It…

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Added by Anna Blake on February 5, 2016 at 9:30am — No Comments

How to Stop Feeling the Rub of Judgment.

On a good day, a judgment is simply a carefully considered decision or opinion, but on a bad day, it’s a list of shortcomings. Usually half of them are impossible to change. And then in the horse world, a whole bunch of us ask…

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Added by Anna Blake on January 29, 2016 at 9:00am — 2 Comments

Starting Back After a Winter's Rest.

2015-12-13 13.05.44

It happened last Tuesday afternoon. I was finishing up midday chores and I braced as I came around the side of the barn where I usually get slapped by a polar wind. This time…

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Added by Anna Blake on January 22, 2016 at 9:00am — No Comments

Enough with the Bliss-Ninny Platitudes!

Your horse is escalating. His prance is coming apart into a full-blown Flamenco dance with a furious stomp to his hind hooves. It’s audible; you’re on pavement in front of an indoor arena. His front hooves alternately pop the ground and…

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Added by Anna Blake on January 15, 2016 at 9:30am — No Comments

New Eyes on the Same Ordinary Stuff

I’ll tell you about how the first follow happened. She was a young barn-rat of a girl. You know the…

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Added by Anna Blake on January 8, 2016 at 8:30am — No Comments

Auld Lang Syne: The Ghost Herd

I’ve mentioned it before; I still mourn Cochise, that black and white Pinto that Little Joe rode on Bonanza. It’s New Year’s Eve and the song about the “Old Long Since” keeps running laps in my head. I toast this sentimental…

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Added by Anna Blake on January 1, 2016 at 9:10am — No Comments

When Nothing Less than Havarti Will Do

I’ve been getting the stink eye from Preacher Man.

It happens. He’s a member of the Long and Low Club, and while charging through the yard, herding the indifferent ducks from outside their fence, he’s bound to kick up some debris. It’s important work; he’s moved around some in…

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Added by Anna Blake on December 25, 2015 at 9:00am — No Comments

How the Barn Became a Church

Were you born in a barn? Not me, but I wish. I lived in the tiny asphalt-shingle house just south of the barn.

The barn was huge and white, with doors that rolled open wide enough that even the big tractor passed through with room to spare. There were two tall silos on the east side,…

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Added by Anna Blake on December 18, 2015 at 9:00am — 2 Comments

Looking for a Better Ride?

Let’s say you’re a middle sort of rider. You aren’t a rank beginner; you’re comfortable in the saddle but it isn’t always pretty. Either you’ve been in lessons a couple of years or you’ve ridden all your life, more or less like you do now.…

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Added by Anna Blake on December 11, 2015 at 9:00am — No Comments

What Are You Saving for Good?

My parents grew up in the Great Depression and were frugal; we kept things “for good.” It was the first Easter after we lost our farm and we’d moved across four states and settled in a tract house, trying to pass for suburbanites.  I was…

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Added by Anna Blake on December 4, 2015 at 9:30am — No Comments

On Women, Bravery, and Being Old Gray Mares

Lords,Sunrise

Do you have a mentor? Someone you respect who’s just a few strides ahead of you, and when they go through the door, they give it a shove so there’s a gap left…

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Added by Anna Blake on November 27, 2015 at 9:00am — No Comments

Anthropomorphism. It’s a Not Bad Thing.

This week I saw a comment on a great story about a mustang that credited the horse and rider’s success, but called the writing sentimental. I had to laugh; if she thought that story was sentimental, she’d hate my…

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Added by Anna Blake on November 20, 2015 at 9:00am — 2 Comments

The Grandfather Horse: When Animals Have Pets…

I have a bone to pick with my Grandfather Horse. He stole my goat.

It’s hard to complain. Spirit’s been my soulmate for the last 29 years and I’m prone to writing sticky, sentimental…

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Added by Anna Blake on November 13, 2015 at 9:01am — No Comments

Are You an Advocate for Horses?

Neglected horses are everywhere in the news lately. By the time you make sense of the images, it’s too late to look away. You might be keeping an sad eye on some thin horses in your local area. Maybe you remember Ruby Ranch Horse Rescue’s…

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Added by Anna Blake on November 6, 2015 at 9:12am — No Comments

When Your Horse Falls In a Hole.

Horses fall into holes all the time. Metaphoric holes; the really tricky kind that jump up and surprise you when you least expect it.

Holes might be things like confusing cues; you want to canter but…

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Added by Anna Blake on October 30, 2015 at 9:00am — No Comments

On Being an Old Gray Mare With Chronic Lameness

It’s a shooting pain. Usually my foot is brick-tight and I can’t bend my toes. When I do manage to bend them in a natural walking angle, there’s a big red pain. I think my toes have cracked off of my foot and it feels wet–like hot acid-blood is…

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Added by Anna Blake on October 16, 2015 at 8:30am — 2 Comments

Your Horse is NOT Your Therapist

There’s a cartoon of a roadside stand with a horse inside. The sign says, “Therapy.” We all smile because we’re reminded of that saying about a horse being cheaper than a therapist. I’m not sure that’s true, but after a day of dealing with traffic,…

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Added by Anna Blake on October 9, 2015 at 9:00am — No Comments

Anthropomorphic Thoughts About Spaying Mares.

He said we don’t need to import sport horses; we have great horses right here; we’re under-using great mares. More people should consider spaying mares and competing them. I read this in an article a year ago, written by a respected equestrian, and I’ve…

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Added by Anna Blake on October 2, 2015 at 9:16am — No Comments

Permission to NOT Ride.

Last Tuesday I had an 8 a.m. lesson with a boarder and her sweet gelding. He’s had a good summer; they even made it to a couple of schooling shows. This gelding had a checkered past with previous owners and when this pair started with me, he was a…

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Added by Anna Blake on September 25, 2015 at 11:30am — No Comments

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by The Morning Feed On the Way Home is a gorgeous 7 year old, 16hh Standardbred retired racehorse mare who is ready for a new career through the Greener Pastures Standardbred Adoption Society. Homeslice is currently located in Langley, British Columbia with the adoption fee of $600. Visit his page at The Morning Feed

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