The Equestrian Bloggers Facebook group is starting a monthly Blog Hop. This is September's topic.
Why Did I Start Blogging?
I decided to start blogging about all things Equestrian a couple of months ago when I was on a staycation. With lots of time on my hands, since I will do anything to avoid housework, starting a blog with the aim of writing five posts a week seemed like a great idea.
I've owned horses since I was 12 years old, which was 30 years ago (you can do the math). During that time, I was without a horse to ride for maybe 3 years after my heart-horse was euthanized in 2006 (laminitis) and I was house-poor after buying a house the year earlier. Add another 3 years of riding, but not owning my current horse Phantom, and I have been a horse owner for 24 years. That's a lot of money spent on board and paid to the farrier - I don't want to add that up and discover that I could have bought a Lamborghini (it wouldn't fit me anyway, I'm too short).
Through most of my riding time, I have kept track in some way of my rides. When I was a teenager I lived in a small rural town so joined the local Light Horse 4H club. I was the only rider who rode English only. One of the requirements of 4H were monthly reports and an annual project book. We were supposed to record expenses, amount of feed used, amount of time spent riding, etc. So I had a calendar up in the tack room that I had to myself and I would write on it with a dry-erase marker after every ride, then transfer the information into my 4H book. I also had a ledger that I recorded all my horse expenses in. I was 14 years old.
This is what started me on tracking my riding. I was in 4H for two years, and after moving to the big city I kept up with the tracking. I moved onto a day-timer type of calendar that I kept in my tack locker. I would record how long I rode, what I did, was there something I needed to keep in the back of my mind, etc. I used this format for quite a while, which came in handy when I had significant soundness issues with my gelding Farly.
When I got back into riding after Farly went to the big grassy field in the sky, I was doing it in a more casual style than what I had been doing previously. I wasn't really planning on competing, and I didn't know if I would plan on owning a horse again, so recording what I was doing with my riding went by the wayside. I think I also realized that although I had spent time recording my progress, I never looked back at it. It's not easy to see how far you've come from a few hastily scribbled sentences.
Over the last 7 years of getting back in the saddle, I have had a few attempts at recording my riding, but never stuck with it. I used a journaling program on my iPad - until my iPad died a premature death and I replaced it with a Samsung tablet. I went back to my old method of a day-timer - which worked, but once the year was done I would put it aside and never look at it again. I wrote things down more from habit than anything else.
This spring, I finally decided to take the plunge and take on a second horse, Cisco. He wasn't broke yet, but I had done a bunch of groundwork with him a couple of years earlier. He had little life experience, as he had lived the first 5 years of his life on the same acreage he was born on. He had never been inside anything other than a run-in shelter. He had never been on a trailer. He had known the same 8 horses all his life. He had a lot to learn on his way to being my riding horse.
One of the items on my horse bucket list is to train a horse by myself, from start to finish. Cisco is hopefully that horse. And I want to have a record of our journey.
So this is the reason that I decided to start blogging in a public format. To share my journey of training Cisco. It forces me to write more than a couple of scribbled lines, and hopefully add some images and video on occasion to mark our progress.
A couple of years ago I started reading some other people's blogs on a daily basis. I love to read the trials and tribulations of my fellow horse lovers. As someone who lives for her horses, finding others who have the same passion for these beautiful, fragile beasts has been delightful. And I hope that there are some horse lovers that will read my blog, and realize how lucky we are to have our equine experiences.