Friday, January 30, 2009

My Wish List

As spring slowly begins to draw near...well, at least the promise of spring, I begin to get more excited about riding. I suppose being in the saddle two weeks ago, after over a month off, helped!
Even though times are a bit tough and we are all cutting back in our own ways, I think it is important to continue to spend a little, too. Somebody told me that if nobody spends, it only hurts the economy more. We've got to support our horse industry and our local businesses, or they won't be there when we need them and things get better! I have decided that I'm not going to panic and stop spending. Rather, I'm going to spend less and save more. So I'll still be doing my share to contribute to the economy.

That being said, I will still have a wish list of items! Doesn't every horse owner? In terms of tack and equipment, I was inspired by the Buck Brannaman clinic I attended this past fall. Paint Girl ordered herself a new bridle, a treat for meeting a goal she set for herself. I forgot to take a picture of it (Pony Girl forgetting to take a picture is usually unheard of!)

If you have the November issue of Western Horseman magazine, you can see the bridle on page 154. It is the complete bridle set by Brighton Saddlery. She ordered it to use on Fritzy, their black and white Paint mare. Goodness, it will look really spiffy on her! By the way, Paint Girl was really happy with the customer service at Brighton and was thrilled that they put the whole bridle, reins, bit, and mecate, together before they sent it to her!

I covet a pair of the Buck Brannaman parachute cord mecate reins from their Houlihan Horse Gear site (these are the same ones on the Brighton Saddlery bridle as well.) I want to get a pair of mecate reins. Horsehair ones would be ideal, but are out of my price range right now. These parachute cord reins have a great weight and feel to them. I have my color picked out, which are not the green ones pictured below. I would prefer the brown/tan/black.
However, I realize that even more than the mecate, what I really need is a pair of reins to use with my shank bit. On the trail, I prefer to ride one-handed and neck rein. While in California last year, I got a new headstall and reins. It is hard to find a headstall that matches the mahogany brown tones in my Circle Y saddle, but the one I got was a good fit and I liked the rawhide diamond trim.

However, I found that the matching leather reins stained my gloves, jeans, or chinks (that hasn't actually happened yet because I make a point of not when wearing my butter colored chinks when using these reins.) I am not sure why this is happening, I even used them a while in hopes that the "newness" would wear off. As a result, I have ended up using the snaffle bit and yacht rope reins more regularly. This is also fine because when I ride in the arena, I am working flexing and giving to the bit with My Boy, which is better with the two-handed snaffle.

While at a tack shop over the holidays, I noticed pairs of romal reins for a pretty good deal. These are not the fancy, $600 a pop rawhide variety, but they were rustic, heavy, and thick. I am thinking that I am going to take my headstall up to the store and match a pair of the reins to them. This seems to be a good solution for finding reins for trail riding. I always knot my split reins anyways, as I tend to have rein-dropping fumble fingers, so it makes sense to get a pair of romals.

Something else on my wish list is a fleece cooler. This is one piece of horse wear I do not have yet. My mom used one on her gelding last month after a heavy workout, and it was amazing how well it soaked up moisture and dried him out.

Here is My Boy a couple of years ago, back in the first month I leased him. He was boarded at a stable so we had an indoor arena so he was worked more often and harder, often requiring a hose down and a cool-out!

I really like the Valley Vet Supply catalog and have good luck with their Brookside brand name items, like My Boy's winter turnout blanket, which is on it's second year and holding strong! They have a double-sided fleece cooler for a reasonable price of $49.95. I'd get the hunter with tan trim to match everything else I have for my horse. Isn't it funny how we horse people get into our "colors?"

Now on to the items I don't really need, but just W*I*S*H I could get. The if I win the lottery kind of wish list!

I really want another pair of chinks. No, I have hardly worn out the pair I have! Don't laugh, but I have considered ordering a pair of these hair-on-hide chinks from National Ropers Supply. I said don't laugh because they are youth chinks. I am not sure they would fit me, but I am thinking the size large might, just maybe. Goodness, it might be prudent to call and get some measurements first? It would be worth a shot since they have such fun details , are only $119, and would show less dirt than my butter elk chinks. I really just want a second pair so I'm making that up. I'm not afraid of a little dirt. The hide color will vary, the catalog says. Who knows what I'd get! If they were black and white cowhide, I'd have to give them to Paint Girl. Then she'd match her horse!

Boots. Here comes trouble. I have a darn tootin' decent boot collection for a cowgirl just two years back into riding. I have boots to get me through a variety of cowgirl events, for fashion and horse-riding function. But one always has to have a pair of dream boots on the horizon, right? Here is a pair I've been eyeing for over a year! See, a whole year! I have restraint!
I don't know anything about the boot brand Corral, but I love the details, such as the cut-out crosses, and the python toe. I found these on Rod' and luckily, they haven't sold out in my size yet! My restraint might be going out the window.... I do have a birthday coming up, beloved family members!

I would also love to have a pair of Lucchese boots. As I mentioned in my last post, my friend got her first pair in Vegas a few years ago and said when she tried them on, she understood what everyone was talkin' about. Here are two styles I found on that I like. Even though I like square toe boots for riding, I like the classic pointy toe for wearing with jeans. They are simple and traditionally classic!

Goodness, why I can't just have something as simple and affordable as this $3.95 leather curb strap on my wish list, I'll never know!


  1. Because you can afford to go get that curb strap thats why! Whats the point in a wish list if it isn't something you really have to wish for? lol. My list keeps growing.... and I'm making a trip to the states soon, the dollar is a little more affordable for me there, so I may have to indulge in a few of the items I'm longing for!

  2. What a wish list!

    It is inspiring me to make my own... which is dangerous, especially since I was just saying today that I need to clean out my tack room and get rid of all the extra stuff I have collected.

    Interesting thing you said about the cooler, you said you wanted fleece. My cousin and I have always used wool and have been nothing but impressed with it's wicking abilities. I haven't found fleece to wick away moisture as well. Just a thought! Wool is heavier and pricier though.

    I plan on putting a little bling on one of Buttercup's headstalls this weekend... I am going to try my hand at wrapping the browband with ribbon! Look for the results on my blog!

  3. I love Brighton Saddlery! It is only about 20 minutes from my house and you don't even know the amount of restraint I practice not to be down there every other day. In the six months since we have moved back here I have dropped a fair amount of coin into their cash registers and will probably continue to do so in the future!

  4. {Squirrel Gurl} ~ I am thinking that if all of my family members cleaned out their tack rooms and brought the gear they don't need or want anymore to our next family gathering, we could do a tack swap! One person's junk is another's treasure, right?! Although I haven't collected enough yet to really clean out my tack room, LOL! ;)

  5. Tack is definetely something we run short on around here . . . and of course, boots! When I met my husband, I had quite the collection of boots . . . now, I have the husband and four kids who ALL need boots!

  6. Hey Pony Girl - if you are still looking for a cooler check out I have always had good customer service and quality products when I deal with them. In fact I just looked at their site and they have a cooler on sale for UNDER $40 (US)!
    Some people swear by wool coolers but I have several fleece ones that have worked great, stood up to use and are easy to wash.

    And I agree with what you were saying about spending money. It doesn't make any sense to me how the economy would get better if people spend less. I understand having to cut back and watch your $$ but at the same time cash has to circulate.

    ps - great list!

  7. I use romel reins as I too have found myself on a steep drop off cliff with one rein on the ground, my horse stepping on it and pulling back! Yikes...not a fun experience. However those pretty ones in the picture in your post with all the "silver" on them become pretty heavy in your hands and in your horse's mouth. I have a beautiful set of hand made romels ($$$$$) and several lesser priced ones. The only split reins I have...are tied like you do to yours. When I ride The Bossmans Mare I have to tie his too!

  8. I usually strip the bridles i buy with rubbing alcohol to get the top layer of paint off. You just use a little bit and rub it over the leather once or twice. It might solve the problem of the leather staining things.

  9. Wool coolers are much better than fleece. And I know of a way to save money! Go to your local Army surplus store and pick up a wool blanket. Either sew tie straps on it or use binder clips. Works like a charm and saves mucho bucks!

  10. LOL...yep...just a curb strap!

    One of the benefits of being married is receiving the items on my wish list...I still am waiting for my Christmas gift...but it's in production!!

    You gotta wish big, nothin' wrong with that!

  11. I am so glad You stopped by my blog!! I love yours!! It is great to find all these other country crazy cow folks. Even though we work on a ranch and horses and cows are how we make our living we deffinitly have a 10 page long wish list. (I do at least) my hubby bubbly is more settled in life and content with what he has, go figure.

  12. I have purchased two fleece coolers on ebay and I love them. Best part- less than $20 each with shipping. My wish list isn't that big right now. we have so much tack here it's really not even funny. But it would be fun to have some handmade romal reins. Our neighbor makes them. And another neighbor makes really great slobber straps, breast collars, headstalls and other tack. I do collect snaffle bits, and shank bits, so I'm always ready to buy more of them!

  13. You're so funny with your wish lists. I hope you are able to get those boots you're dreaming about...and the newer chinks, too.
    I'd like to get some chinks, too and maybe a fleece cooler and new blanket for my Baby Doll. (By the way, I love that photo of My Boy after his cool-down in the cross-ties).

    But for now, the only thing on my wish list is to walk again and be able to take care of myself, my family and my horse and animals.

    Hey! Before I forget, stop by my blog, as I've got a goodie for you :)


  14. OH, I have a wish list as long as the Nile!! There are so many new things that I need. I need a new saddle. I have four saddles, but my two western saddles, have fenders that are too long and I can't get my feet in my stirrups!! So, either I need new fenders or new saddle!! And I would love a new pair of boots. My feet have gotten bigger after having my three kids. And when you wear flip flops all the time you tend to get wider feet! LOL

    Wish lists are wonderful. And I love RODS!! They are awesome. They did a photo shoot out at our school farm one year. It was really cool/

  15. You're right--it is important to shop wisely and support the businesses you really believe in---or they won't be there. I'm avoiding chains and going for the local shops and hand-made. Basically, pinpointing the ones I REALLY want to stay open! I love the mecate you put on here and a couple of the boots--you're getting me in the shopping mood. Years ago we bought a hand-made mecate made out of samson stable braid--yahcht rope--it is so soft and responsive--and has held up well. The weight is perfect. I also like it for my long lines.

  16. Before you order your new chinks, check out my friend Jane Aldens buisness- R6 Leather. I have a link on my blog- She and her hubby and kids make chaps, chinks, saddles and anything else you could want or need- and She'll make e'm custom for you. AND they aren't that expensive!
    She mad my chaps last year from pearl lambskin and boy are they comfy and Pretty!

  17. Those Lucchese boots were on my Holiday Guide to Gift Giving Coolness! I love them too! I hope someone gives them to you!


I love hearing from my readers!! I truly enjoy all of your feedback, advice, helpful tips, and stories. You all make me laugh and I learn so much from you, too. I will try to post replies to your comments as often as I can.

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