Friday, May 29, 2015

Summer horse hairstyles

Last weekend was the start of mane-gate 2015. John does not like roached manes but I think they are super cute so last weekend Frosty got roached. 

Frosty has a nicely arched neck and refined head and ears, I think she pulls off the roached look really well! Her mane is extremely thick and she does not like having it pulled (I also hate pulling it). So I got out the clippers and shaved it all off (left the forelock) for summer. It is a win-win situation, I don't have to pull mane and Frosty stays cooler in the summer heat. As an added bonus, when it starts to grow in a little more she will have a mohawk! 

That being said, not every horse is a candidate for a roached mane. Speck has *ahem* a slightly less refined head and larger ears (love them!). He is a TWH and breed standard is a long mane. Speck has great hair, his mane is much thinner than Frosty's and he does not get too hot with it left long. I keep his bridle path trimmed back about 3" behind his ears because I prefer the look of a longer bridle path with a long mane. Speck's mane is long enough to be put in a running (french) braid for foxhunting or trail riding on hot days if I feel like braiding it. I find that if you have a horse with longer hair and want it to stay that way a good detangler is essential! I really like the cowboy magic concentrated detangler, a bottle lasts a long time and it is helpful when combing out wind-knots/dreadlocks, burrs, etc. 

I also bang both horse's tails to about 2-3" off the ground, I think this looks really sharp and prevents their tails from becoming a highway for ticks (gross). It also prevents the horses from stepping on their tails and pulling them out. 

*Side note...I do not show and have no idea what is acceptable for show horse manes/tails*

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Barn project part 2

I don't have before pictures for this project and also can't take any credit here because John did all this himself ;).

Part 2: The barn floor

Our barn is a bank barn so the bottom part is set up for horse stalls and is actually built cut into the bank. The top part of the barn/barn floor is built above ground and is used for storing hay and feed as well as equipment.

  However....when we moved in the barn floor was split into 2 levels to make an art studio which caused some problems. One being that the bottom half was too low to park any equipment. The second being it was also too low to stack big bales of hay more than 2 bales high. Splitting the barn floor also made the lower half very dark because hardly any light could reach it.

So...John bought an electric sawzall and a lot of blades and cut the floor out!

I didn't get before pictures of the barn (I wish I had some!) but hopefully this gives some idea of where the floor was before it was removed and how much additional working space and light we now have. 

This is the right side of the space we can now use to store small bales, there is storage for an equal amount of small bales on the left side as well.

There are many more barn projects ahead but I am so thankful to now have functional stalls and more space for hay and the tractor!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Our barn

The previous owners of our property used the bank barn built ~1890 as a bedroom and art studio, so John and I have been working over the past year to convert it back know...a barn.

Part 1: The stalls 
The first project was to change the lower part of the bank barn back into stalls as it was being used as  a bedroom. 

Wall removal

Large sink removal

There was a lot of insulation to be taken out

Getting closer...John removed this 
plywood floor so he could install a crushed stone floor

Packing the dumpster full of floor/wall/insulation material!

A few weeks later John's friend came and helped build stall walls and also install a new beam, Thank you Harry!!

Frosty's stall

Speck's stall

Old doors with new hardware

My horses!

I am starting this blog to post updates/progress on my 2 horses and life on the farm.


Speck is a 14.2 hh gaited TWH/spotted saddle horse, he is 11 years old. I got Speck when I was living in Tennessee and spent many hours trail riding some of the most beautiful places in East TN including the Smokey mountains. Speck loves other horses and especially enjoys group trail rides, he is also my foxhunting horse.

Frosty Noggin "Frosty" 

Frosty is a Welsh x Appendix, she is around 14.1 hh and is 12 years old. I got Frosty during my move to Pennsylvania last year, she previously had a career as a show pony and loves to jump. Frosty's easygoing and adventurous personality made it easy to make her into a trail horse! I have taken her to several hunter pace/paper chase events but my favorite activity with her is trail riding and jumping natural obstacles on the trail. We are lucky to have access to some cross country jumps at a local park as well as the use of a nearby indoor for ring work. 

Lucky Draw Farm

The 11 acres of insanity that we call home! The farm has been an ongoing project...I am lucky to have a very patient and knowledgeable husband!