Trying to beat the heat

Greetings from Stinking’ Hot Boise

It is hot AF ’round these parts.  I wake up early, try to do a few things before it gets to like 27 gazillion degrees, then take a nap hide in my house for the hottest hours of the day.  Santos is in kindergarten now, and class ends up being around 7:30pm, just as it is starting to cool own.  Let me be clear: Cool right now is 70°F and that is at 4:00am.  It is pretty awful. Luckily for me, the heat doesn’t seem to really effect my condition, now that I am used to it. That doesn’t mean I like it, however.

Gratuitous Pony picture.  If you look closely, you will see he is losing his baby teeth. (I really, really, really need to clean my boots. Ugh.)

Because it is so damn hot, I haven’t really been doing as much outside with Santos as I’d like, and am using that inside time to declutter my house.  I started with my clothes. Then the bathroom, and currently I’m working on my desk space. It keeps me out of trouble when my body and brain are sub-functional.  As you can imagine, my cats are delighted that I am around so much these days.

Dunno what I’d do with out The Tiger’s help. He is excellent at folding clothes, and even better at making beds.

My cat obsession is fodder for another post. I’ll just apologize in advance for making you look at their cuteness.

Until next time. Stay cool. Stay hydrated.



Because words are so powerful, I like to have a daily affirmation. 

Hello My Beauties!

I have been thinking a lot about the power of words these days. My condition has taken a turn for the worse, and my legs are not working all that well right now.  I could very well wallow in my misfortune, but I would rather not.  Some mornings it is hard to even human, so I use positive affirmations to get me through the day. I work to be diligent about what words I use, and think to describe my self, and my life. I may joke about being a cripple, but the reality is that I see myself not as crippled, but rather as a person with a particular set of challenges, and we all have challenges.

When I take The Debonaire Mare  to the horse shows, I have a very strict rule in my booth: No Negative Self Talk.  I do my best to make that a rule for my entire life, and I hope you will make it a rule for your life, too.  Remember, words have power.

Because words are so powerful, I like to have a daily affirmation.  If you are having trouble coming up with something positive, something as simple as “Yes I Can” will help carry you through the day.  Try saying the following affirmation a few times today:


YES I CAN be strong

YES I CAN be brave

YES I CAN keep dreaming and making my dreams a reality.


YES I CAN! First ride for Santos and me with a bridle.  Thank you Sprinkler Bandit for the photos and for babysitting us. Now I wish I had put the navy polos and bells on him. Sigh.



Just found this draft: I forgot to post it in January. *FacePalm*


Catching up

I haven’t kept up with this like I had hoped to.  As with all things, a certain amount of practice is necessary to make it a habit. Since my last post I have successfully been on Santos’s back twice, we went to a “Jumping Show” ( I like to call it an “Activity”), and I survived the holidays. Lets just take a closer look at the fun, shall we?


Santos goes on An Adventure and then gets backed

In November- has it really been that long?- we took Santos to An Activity. It is actually a schooling show series that happens ’round these parts every winter.  We asked for permission to do the ground pole class in hand.  Of course we had to have the right outfit.

Santos wearing the “Petrol Outfit” and looking Debonaire AF.

I know.  It is hard to be as good looking as Santos.  And my outfit was pretty much on point, too.

Not only were out outfits perfect, but I actually RAN for the first time in like 5 years!  Better living through chemistry, that’s what I always say!!!


Look at us running and jumping!!!

As if running and jumping weren’t enough, the next day our good friend SB came over and I climbed aboard Santos.  He was suitably unimpressed.

Too busy hating his bridle to notice a PERSON ON HIS BACK!                                           Ps. Sorry about the non matching halter fail

To be clear, non of us expected any trouble from Santos. I had already put all my weight over his back several times and he had been wearing his saddle like a champ for a few months. He walked nicely around while SB led him and I did my best not to fall of from excitement/ptsd fear from the last horse I had.  This is where I would put a video of the magic, but as it happens, I am too cheap to have an upgraded blog site. Alas.

Survival of the Holidays

The holidays came and went.  We celebrated in a rather unspectacular fashion this year, and did absolutely nothing. My Christmas fail was so complete that I didn’t even get media of Santos getting his present- and he was the only one to get a gift from me this year.

It isn’t that I don’t like the holidays, because I do. It was just that somehow they snuck up on me and were over before I was ready for them.

We had a white Christmas, so that was nice and I was well enough to walk over to see Santos. I managed to get some scenery pictures.



Why in the fuck are they off center?  Pretty though, so there you go.

-Until next time.

Thinking of Unicorns Past and Present

The weather has been unseasonably warm, and all I really want to do is go play Ponies with Santos. But between work, The Debonaire Mare, and this stupid f*cking cold, all I can manage is to feed the horses their dins, clean the stall and, spend just a few quiet minuets petting my pony.  And of course read blogs and waste time on the interwebs.

My friend SB just wrote a great blog about how to get a horse like hers.  Her Zoëbird is a unicorn. For real.  That got me thinking about how these special horses come into our lives.

I am incredibly blessed to have had three unicorns in my life to date. Gold Leaf, Athena, and now Santos.

When I was 15 years old, there was a horse for sale, and I went to see him. I literally had $600, my entire savings, to spend on this horse, and it was kind of a long shot if the owner would accept that offer.  Mom and I drove to the coast which wasn’t that far, maybe 25-30 miles, and met Gold Leaf.  Here is the thing:  I knew the SECOND I laid eyes on him he was my unicorn.  After I test rode Gold Leaf, I got off, and he proceeded to lick my entire face for nearly a minute. It was as if he and I were long lost friends and had all sorts of catching up to do.  Luckily the owner felt the same way and accepted my meager offer.GoldLeaf and I were together for 13 years, until he passed at 24 years old. I still miss him, and think of him, and the our time together every day.

I met Athena when I moved to Idaho.  I answered an ad to lease a jumper (what was I thinking!?) and for a year, I rode Sam Athena’s stablemate. Athena was retired, and everyday when I came to ride Sam, she I glared at each other, until one day, I took her for a spin.  She was an absolute dream, and we were inseparable best friends until she crossed the rainbow bridge.  Athena took me to the local jumper shows: we did the 2′ and 2’6′ classes.  I hung on to her mane and she took me around as careful as could be, because I was paralyzed with terror. She would whinny at me when I visited, comforted me when I was sad, and was my friend regardless. She reminded me how fun jumping was, and I taught her some basic dressage.  Athena was my second unicorn; the lessons she taught me serve me well.

My third unicorn is Santos.  I met him on a blind date, after swearing off horses, once and for all. When I met him the feeling was  identical to when I met Gold Leaf, over 25 years ago. I paid attention.  I had no business buying a pony, but these things you don’t ignore.  So now I have my third unicorn. Unlike my first two unicorns (how greedy does that sound, though?) Santos is a baby. Gold Leaf was 11 when we met, and Athena was 18, I think.  The experience is completely different, as there is no riding in the equation yet, and I will tell you this:  the time spent grooming, leading, petting, lunging, etc. is time very well spent.  This is how you tighten that bond.  Having a unicorn, like any relationship, is work.

So how DO you get a unicorn? You must allow them to get you. It is as simple, and as complicated as that.

Until next time-Crystal

Gonna Have To Up My Style Game

So I am flipping through the ENTIRE Eskadron line, making my wish list for my sweet, impossible to dress, Pony.

Winter is trying to leave, bringing mad amounts of mud that I have to slog through to open and shut gates in Santo’s paddocks.  I live in jeans (which I abhor- that is a story for another time), country boots and a ten year old parka that I just love.  Here is the thing: I am dressing for utility,  It is not glamorous, it is not pretty.  My black parka shows every speck of mud, and god help us when the mud crusts over and turns to dust. There is just no getting around it if you keep your pony outside in the winter, which I do.  He is furry, muddy and happy.

With spring (hopefully) around the corner, it is time to start planning my outfits.  This year poses new challenges as Santos really only looks good in shades of blue.  There is only so much you can do with that.  As an experiment, I put a pink-ish pad with tan trim on him. If I had to see it, you have to see it.

It is really a travesty.

So I am flipping through the ENTIRE Eskadron line, making my wish list for my sweet, impossible to dress, Pony.

We rocked that teal, though.

Good thing I like to shop!

Until next time-


Are you Prepared?

IMG_5884On Monday October 2 my Bad Cats calendar announced “Things don’t look so good for you, I’m afraid.”  How true those words were.  The Las Vegas shootings, followed by Tom Petty’s passing.  How could things go so horribly wrong?  Then the next Monday, the 9th of October, 2017, California lit on fire.

I grew up in Mendocino county, and went to middle and high school in Ukiah, the county seat. Most of my friends lived in Redwood Valley and I would spend summers as a working student in Sebastopol, in Sonoma county.  As these fires tore through the communities in Sonoma and Mendocino counties, every single person I grew up with was impacted or had a family member who was impacted. My cousin in Sonoma is still not home, and my uncles in Santa Rosa had their things packed and were on standby to evacuate.  My dear friend Teresa, spent nights at the stable with her horse, truck and trailer ready to run in an instant. My brother, although he is 6-8 miles as-the-crow-flies from the western edge of the Redwood Complex fire, was ready to leave with his dogs if necessary.

There is so much devastation, loss of life, and apocalyptic horror as a result of these fires, but the fires could not burn down the strong communities.  Which brings me to the point of this post: Are you ready with your papers, loved ones, pets, and livestock, should the worst happen?

I started thinking “What would I do if there was a fire in my neighborhood?” Or a rain event that triggered landslide (I’m on a dry hillside, so not much risk of flood). Or a devastating earthquake. Or?  The answer was “I have no idea.”

There are several other folks in my immediate neighborhood that have horses and other livestock.  Nearly everyone has pets, and you can fit dogs and cats into your car.  So I wasn’t as worried about the small animals for this line of thinking. But for those who have livestock, what do we do?  Jean and I have a two horse trailer, and two horses.  But where do we go? What about our neighbors?

What about YOU? Are you ready with a plan if worst comes to worst?

Until next time,


Hello, And Welcome!

CB becomes a fan of Ponies.

Hi all!  I am CB and I have been a dressage aficionado for 30+ years. One of these days, I’ll dig up some old photos and we can really roll down memory lane. Or not.  We’ll see. My first lessons were on Fjord Horses (technically, I think they were ponies, but they seemed huge to me). And then it was on to horses. The bigger the better.

Last fall my Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) flared up pretty severely.  I was no longer strong enough to ride or handle my beloved (and rather troublesome) mare, Olivia.  She found a new strong owner in the spring.  It was pretty much looking like I was never going to have a horse of my own again. Some days I have trouble walking, or maybe I can’t use my hands well. I certainly cannot ride everyday and keep a horse going in full training. So an end to owning horses came for me.

Nobody said anything about PONIES, though.

A friend of mine had this cute pony. About a month or so ago, another friend (I’m looking at you SB) suggested we go look at the pony, because looking never hurt anything. So they set up a date for me to meet the pony, no doubt knowing full well it would be love at first sight.

Santos explains to CB EXACTLY how his leg MUST be scratched on our first date. Looks like my hands and feet were working that day.

They were not wrong.  And then friend number one made me a deal I couldn’t refuse. So, now I HAVE A PONY. And there is nothing worse than a born again pony fan.

Santos is currently 2 years old.  He is a German Riding Pony and is still a stallion.  He is the kindest, gentlest, sweetest horse pony I have ever been around. I am seriously like an 8 year old whenever I am around him.  I can’t wait to get him ALL THE OUTFITS!

White noses are for kissing!

I am looking forward to spending the next couple of years getting him started just right. (while sporting spiffy outfits and ribbons in his mane and tail, more than likely.  He just moved in to my neighbors place 4 days ago, so it is convenient for me to see him every day now. We will start with a structured routine (as long as my body cooperates) in a week or so.  Right now, he needs time to adjust to his new surroundings, his new friend Charlie Horse, and his new routine.

Santos and his new BFF Charlie Horse

There is nothing better than a tiny pony, I am coming to understand. I look forward to have a gentle and kind horse pony to help me keep riding even when my body is not cooperating. For now the future looks bright for Santos and me.  I know there will be bumps in the road, and that it won’t always be easy, but for now it is heaven.

Looking ahead

Until next time.