Trail Riding Adventures!

Love this view!! Looking between the ears of my mighty steed!

I started writing this blog because of my love for my horses! As the title states I definitely want to share my life but I don’t want to forget about my horse stories and so I wanted to get back to sharing my beautiful horses. I have a fun story to share, it really wasn’t scary, I suppose it could have gone awry but my calm and well trained horses took everything in stride. And the key to a great outcome is I didn’t get nervous or show fear, I was more like “really? did this just happen? “

I was out on the trail with my best friend who was riding her horse Gracie. I was riding Chloe and Zack was at her side as I was ponying him on this ride. We crossed a busy street and as we were walking along the trail and talking, I noticed that the lead rope on Zack had slipped under the front of my stirrup and went under my leg back to his head. He was walking by Chloe’s side (on my right side) and I thought this is not good, as I now have no control over his head. So I told Sally I have to stop to fix this rope and I said “Whoa” to Chloe and pulled back on her reins. As I pulled the reins, SNAP! my left rein just pulled off of her bit and I now had only one rein controlling her head!! OH NO!

Zack walking along and you can see the blue and black lead rope which went under my right leg on the stirrup of my saddle!

As I pulled Chloe’s right rein to stop I hopped off of her as fast as I could because I had no control to speak of, just turning her would not last and I have Zack to think about also. Oh dear, as I look at my rein I could see right away what happened. The leather that keeps the reins attached to the bit is called a “water loop” and the small leather pieces that ties it onto the rein had come untied! As Sally sat on her mare watching me work on the rein, she told me Zack is lose on the other side of Chloe! “What? Oh no!” BUT he just put his head down close by her and was eating some weeds and grass. I went to the other side of Chloe and took the lead rope which fell from behind the stirrup and I put it around my saddle horn. I just looped it around a couple times because I wanted to get that darn rein tied back onto Chloe’s bit!

This is a photo to show the reins coming from her bit. They are tied on and I never thought in a million years that these leather pieces would come untied! THEY DO! This is not from the day in my story as I had no time or inclination to take any photos as things unfolded!

I was very thankful that I had not lost the leather piece that needed to get threaded back through the holes in the reins and retied. I checked the other side and sure enough it had come untied once. These leather pieces are in triple knots and over time these knots loosen and come untied! YIKES! I am learning, CHECK YOUR TACK before you ride. I purposely do not have these screws that can hold your leather together. In western gear, these screws are called Chicago screws and once they come unscrewed and fall, they can be hard to find. I suppose you could carry extra, but then you would need to carry a screw driver to tighten them. English gear just has buckles, very small like how you would buckle a belt around your waist, but they can break too…. I have had a thin leather english rein break riding Chloe years ago, same scenario only I was just riding her and did not have another horse with me.

After I attached the rein, I lead the horses to a fence that runs along the trail so I could step up on a rail to get on Chloe. She is tall so a little step up is nice if one is around. As I was walking my girlfriend says “Zack is lose again!” DARN IT ALL! the rope which was just looped around my saddle horn slipped off and he was just walking over to eat again! Haha, I have to laugh, because in the end it was rather comical and I am so thankful nothing bad happened. I slip knot tied his rope back on the saddle horn, led Chloe to the fence and once on we just rode down the trail like nothing happened!! I know all the non-horse people out there may not be able to picture what happened, but I am sure thankful for very calm trail ponies!!

She is the BEST EVER Trail Pony! Miss Chloe is so calm, I LOVE her so much!
Chloe and I, my girl, she is the sweetest horse I have ever owned!!!
I rode Zack the next day!
Zack is so silly, he would not open his eyes! He probably didn’t like the rim of my hat. HAHA! I have to share anyways!
He is a goof ball. This is him begging for a treat! Silly boy!

I enjoyed sharing my trail fiasco as anything can happen and am very thankful my girlfriend was with me as I was so busy attending to Chloe and the reins I could not keep an eye on Zack. I may have been more nervous or upset if I had been by myself when all of this happened. I just know that remaining calm in a sticky situation is key to a much better outcome! How do you handle problems that arise that are out of your control, until you can get things back in control again?? Haha, that was a really long question. I hope you enjoyed my trail story. I have SO MUCH FUN with these horses. They bring me much joy and happiness. ❤ ❤ ❤

They melt my heart!

Crazy horse loving cowgirl!

~Diana

My Weekly Smile; Dec. 4, 2019

What makes you smile? This is my weekly smile hosted by my blogging friend Trent! Thank you Trent as I just Love to share and to see everyone’s Smile!

I am so excited about my weekly smile as I have been very lucky and thankful to be smiling as I got a lot of trail riding in this last week. My sister Sharon who lives up in Idaho was here visiting over Thanksgiving weekend! Her youngest son lives here and was unable to go home for Thanksgiving so she decided to come here and we had such a wonderful visit. Sisters just love to chat and we were able to catch up on the happenings of our year, and we were able to catch up with my best friend Sally who is like a sister to us and it was a packed, fun-filled weekend! I am smiling from ear to ear!! 😀 😀 😀

My sister riding Zack. He was her horse for many years and I adopted him when she moved north. It was great FUN to all be riding together again!
My best friend Sally riding Gracie with us and this is after a couple of days of heavy rain which we need but makes owning a horse interesting as we try and keep some dry spots for them in their stalls with partial roofs!
This rain storm was a very cold storm and brought snow down to the 1,000 foot level. Our local mountains you can see in the background are covered in beautiful snow!

We chatted and chatted on our trail rides, so much fun and much like getting together with your friends over lunch. Our trail ponies are so relaxed and trail savvy that we can really enjoy each others company and not worry about our ponies. We do pay attention to our riding, I guess what I am trying to say is we’ve been riding these trails for so many years that the ponies are great and we just have a grand time together! I miss these days with my sister and am so very thankful for her visits and cherish every moment! ❤ ❤ ❤

Best view ever through the ears of my horse!
My best friend with her horse Gracie! How can you not SMILE! 😀
Thank you Sharon for making this Thanksgiving so wonderful! My sister with Gracie, Love my friends and family!

Thank you for sharing my smile with me this week. What made you smile? I am so thankful that we were able to enjoy our trail rides even with the weather. The trails dry very fast and have great footing so we do not have to worry about slippery muddy trails. We can ride the next day even with very heavy rain. My sister made it home safely yesterday and we promised we would stay in touch more often. It is funny how busy we get and how the weeks just fly by. I must say I can’t believe it’s December! I hope you have a wonderful week full of smiles!

Smiling Cowgirl,

~Diana

Weekend Coffee Share; Horse Clipping Fun!

Weekend Coffee share is a time for us to take a break out of our busy lives and enjoy some time catching up with friends (old and new)! Please grab a cup of coffee or tea and share with us! What’s been going on in your life? any weekend plans?

Welcome to my coffee share! How are you today? do you have any weekend plans? or are you going to take it easy and relax? I am going to take it easy and maybe do a little housework (that never ends) and enjoy spending time at the stables. My girlfriend who owns Gracie is out of town this weekend celebrating her granddaughters first birthday! Here’s HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Andrea, aka Andy. She is so adorable, but then all grand daughters are… I digress, as I have to say I have been so incredibly busy at work that I have had trouble getting to my writing and sharing. My schedule is now back to normal and will hopefully stay that way for awhile and through the holidays! How can it be November? and Thanksgiving and Christmas are coming fast!! CRAZY!

Zack body clipped. We call this clip a trace clip as it just traces along the sides of his body starting at his chin all the way to his rump, and includes his entire belly. I actually went up higher on his body than is normal for this clip but that is because we live in a very warm climate so he can handle a little bit more hair off of his body. He will be much cooler on our hot days as yesterday it was just over 90 degrees. It’s been in the high 80’s, this is SOCAL!

I decided to share my barn stories and since I did not take a new photo of Miss Chloe I decided to have her with Zack as my first Weekend Coffee share photo. It’s all I’ll mention of her, even though she is my most favorite mare I have ever owned in my life ~ this last week is about body clipping and I only clipped Zack as Chloe does not grow a long winter coat. I also clipped my girlfriends horses Sadie and Juan. They both grow long winter hair and I have been telling her that these trace clips are so wonderful at keeping the horses cool AND you do not have to blanket them at night because we leave a large amount of hair all along their top-line. With the warm climate where we live, the horses do just fine and they will be easier to cool off when worked and easier to keep clean from sweat and dirt. I will share photos of my other clip jobs of Judy’s horses!

I wanted to share this photo as you can really see Zack is a flea-bitten grey. That is what they call his color. If you look close, he has black flecks all throughout his coat and you will see a big difference with Sadie who is just grey, and as grey’s age they turn white!
This is Sadie and her mane and tail are still very dark as she was born almost black. As she ages she has turned white. She is 15 years old and is pure white except her mane and tail. She has no little spots like Zack. Thought you would enjoy seeing the difference. She is now trace clipped!
This is Juan, Judy’s other horse. She actually owns 3 horses but we did not clip her other horse. All of Judy’s horses are Tennessee Walking horses. He is black and a big boy, and is very beautiful!

I truly enjoy helping others wherever I can and I have been doing this trace clip on Zack every year for the last 4 years. The first year I actually did his whole body called a hunter clip which leaves their legs hairy. Their legs are the hardest to clip and since he is not showing I don’t bother and they don’t sweat like their body. This trace clip is absolutely perfect and works great in our area. My girlfriend paid me for my service which I appreciate and of course we agreed upon a fair price. Its a messy job as hair goes everywhere and gets blown in your face from the clipper fan as I have a huge pair of shears that they use for sheep, but can be used on horses and it makes the job easy and fast!

I have been body clipping horses going back to the 70’s when I use to show Hunter/Jumpers. I clipped for trainers for 30 years into the 90’s and my sister Sharon and I would clip for several barns and it was a great way of earning Christmas money for the holidays!! That’s why I own a nice pair of body clippers and other smaller clippers to finish the job in any ticklish areas on the horse! How is your coffee? or did you decide on tea? or Orange juice?

I am so enjoying my coffee with you this morning. I will be taking care of my girlfriends horse this weekend along with caring for Chloe and Zack. I am hoping to take mine on a trail ride or two and then relaxing at home. I’m thinking of skipping the house work! Haha, okay maybe I’ll throw in a load of laundry, that’s easy peasy. I really wanted to get this coffee share out as I so enjoy sharing with ya’ll. I hope you have a wonderful weekend, and let me know what your doing. If you have a coffee share I’ll stop by and say hello! Thank you to Eclectic Alli for hosting the coffee share!

Horse Crazy clipping girl!

~Diana ❤

My Furry Friends, Kitty and Horses!

She was the best kitty I have ever had and someday I will have another kitty!

What a crazy month, October. I had a birthday and I was crazy busy working way too many days at work covering for a few vacations. My employees need vacations and so I didn’t mind and they are very thoughtful about taking them too. Meaning they will work with me as I can’t afford to have more than one employee off at one time, so we all work together figuring out who takes what days or weeks when. I am trying to avoid talking about the pretty kitty that I had to send to kitty heaven at the end of October. I kept wanting to write a Weekly Smile, but was too sad the last few weeks to participate but as my heart heals I am needing to get back to writing and sharing. Rest in Peace Mara, aka, mini kitty. She was all of 6 pounds, a small white with a splash of orange domestic short haired cat with a personality twice her size. She will be greatly missed. LOVE HER SO!

I’m getting better each day. We’ve had kitties all my life, we do not have any now but I have my pups so we are not without our furry friends!

As I am finally feeling a little better and always try and keep a smile on my face even if I am feeling sad inside this post is going to be all about what keeps me sane. I have in my mind all these thoughts but what helps me through each day is what I really want to share. I will just keep this simple as these next set of photos make me smile and these giant animals amaze me and really have a way of healing my soul.

Chloe on Monday. It’s been pretty hot in the high 80’s and this was after a nice relaxing trail ride! She was eating when I called her name she looks up at me!
Zack got a really good bath Monday. I am planning on clipping him to help him stay cool. I will share a photo when I am done with the trace clip I’m going to do tomorrow!
Zack eating his grain and hay. They get lunch most every day!
I couldn’t get my girlfriends horse to look at me with ears up! She has rolled in her shavings after her bath!

My horses are so darn sweet. I am so truly lucky to have them and even though they are not 100% sound, they are serviceable sound and can be ridden on the trails and lightly in the arena. My girlfriend who owns Gracie has been struggling with some health issues with her and bless her heart we are finally seeing some positive results with her issues. She has been having skin issues and we were able to get her moved to a different stall at the barn. We think this should help as we don’t know if it was the tree or other issues in the stall where she was living, but we feel strongly that this move will help. This is a photo of her in her new stall! She is near and dear to my girlfriends heart, I totally understand. She is in her late 20’s so every year she is here with us we cherish. I help care for her, so I am very attached to her as well. ❤

After I made them exercise lose in the arena I sat on a mounting block in the middle of the arena. My horses came to me on their own, visiting as I sat and took in their kindness. Or are they just looking for a treat? Haha, either way the attention I adored!
Haha, he had been drinking water so his nose was wet and the sand in arena is sticking to his nose! What a silly boy, this is how he entertains me and himself!
Chloe was standing right next to Zack, as he entertains me – she was nuzzling me as well. This is up close and personal! They never left my side!
I am sitting as I take this photo. I am not sure what she sees? But I like this photo. I rubbed their face and we chatted. Yes, I talk to my horses. Mostly I ask them what they are thinking and I think out loud they are most likely looking for a treat which I eventually got up and did exactly that. Gave them a treat!

Thank you for sharing my furry friends with me. I use to not like calling my animals my furry friends. I don’t know why but I’ve warmed up to calling them that or thinking of them in this way. I know that we out live our furry friends and as I see it we need to enjoy every moment we can with them and be thankful for them in our lives. As we lose a small piece of our heart with each one that passes, I always hope that someday we will all meet again.

I am glad I take as many photos as I do as I love to have the memories. I have been printing photo books and am planning on having more printed soon. I hope you have enjoyed my photos as I think you can see their personalities, a little bit anyways. I sure enjoy sharing and will continue to share as it brings me much joy and happiness!

Feeling better each day, crazy animal lover,

~Diana

Weekend Coffee Share; Trail Riding Success!


Weekend Coffee share is a time for us to take a break out of our busy lives and enjoy some time catching up with friends (old and new)! Please grab a cup of coffee or tea and share with us! What’s been going on in your life? any weekend plans?

I am completely enjoying this month as we move into fall. You can smell it in the air as we cool down especially at night so the mornings stay fairly cool for many hours. The nights will start to dip down into the 50’s soon a very welcome reprieve from the summer months. I often mention how time flies as we get older, it just goes by faster each year so it seems. I really do try and savor each day. I have dreams for the future that sometimes feel out of reach, so instead of getting frustrated I try and concentrate on each day to each week. It does make life more fulfilling this way in my eyes! How is your coffee this morning? I had a delicious cup with my oatmeal and english muffin. Or maybe you are drinking tea? I have been having a wonderful time this last month trail riding on my horses, and it took some experimenting but I figured out a way to pony Zack next to Chloe with little to no biting. I’ll explain!

Miss Chloe and Zack, I ride Chloe and have Zack follow on the lead line. This is SO DIFFERENT for me and my youth training of riding Hunter/ Jumpers. This is a whole new discipline of riding that I am enjoying very much! ❤
I ride Miss Chloe with a short rein that is easy to hold, since I have to hold Zack’s lead rope as well. I am getting very comfortable with them both. TONS OF FUN!
I bought a trail riding muzzle, not very successful! He can still be annoying!

When I started on my trail rides ponying Zack I started with just his blue halter with a stud shank (the chain that is attached to the halter) and the lead rope. For those of you who do not know horses, the stud shank chain adds a bit of strength for us puny humans. Most horses weigh around 1,000 pounds give or take 100 pounds. (Zack weighs about 1,000 pounds, Chloe weighs just over 1,200 pounds. We use a tape that measures their height on one side of the tape and measures their weight on the other side that goes around their barrel/belly and approximates how much they weigh. We use it for treatment purposes, as I have to watch Zack’s weight because he has Insulin resistance a metabolic syndrome older horses sometimes acquire as they age. It is nice to have if you want to see how tall your horse is too!)

Zack knows his strength and my sister and I have had him just put his head down with us holding the lead rope while we lead him and he would trot off pulling us on the other end! He is too strong and he knows exactly what he is doing and so we have to let go or be dragged. I have been working on his ground manners with GREAT SUCCESS! And he hasn’t tried to “run off” like that in some years. But I do not want to lose him on the trail, should he shy or spook at something I want as much control of him as I can while riding Chloe. This chain works PERFECT! It goes over their nose and up the side and they have nerves on their nose which when pressured applied, they will comply. It doesn’t hurt him unless he tries to pull away. He actually LOVES Chloe so he stays pretty close, but that’s where the biting comes into play. He just nips and bites her butt, side or my leg as I ride! He is such a brat!!!

He can actually bite the lead rope through the muzzle I bought him which I show in the last photo above. He can grab the lead rope with the muzzle and lead rope in his mouth and then pull and pull on my arm. UGH! He then bumps Chloe trying to bite her through the muzzle which after awhile she gets VERY ANNOYED! STOP IT ZACK!!

I decided to try a bridle with a bit and I took off the reins. Low and behold he is so much happier with the bit in his mouth. He has an oral fixation and just chews and chews on the bit and rarely tries to bite as we ride along. I finally found a solution to my problem as the trail rides were getting more and more annoying with all the nipping and biting. I was about to give up, but it is absolutely the best thing I started doing because I can exercise both horses at the same time and he really needs the exercise! It is usually 30 up to 50 minutes of walking depending on the trails we choose to ride on any given day.

I am a happy cowgirl, thankful for my ponies and the fun and joy they bring to my life. I was asked on my weekly smile to share a photo of my haircut. So I will share what I took here. 😀 weekly smile

I didn’t share because I thought it was a little blurry in the background. I love my color as it always comes out great. Thank you Preference by L’Oreal! Hehe!
I can barely braid it now that its cut, but a small braid is better than none. I like a braid for the stables as I ride with a helmet. So now I have a short braid, better than no braid at all! Haha!

I hope you have a wonderful weekend and thank you for stopping by my weekend coffee share! I am heading to the stables and am thinking this will be bath day for my ponies. Zack is starting to grow his winter coat and each year I always pray it won’t grow to thick. I know I am hoping for a miracle because he just grows a super thick coat like he lives in Alaska or something. I will just shave the hair off once November arrives. It is just to hard to manage in this warm winter climate here in So Cal. Chloe does not grow a long coat, Love that girl! ❤

Happy trail riding Cowgirl!

~Diana ❤

My Weekly Smile; Sept. 18, 2019

What makes you smile? This is my weekly smile hosted by my blogging friend Trent! Thank you Trent as I just Love everyone’s Smile!

This week I am smiling because after two years I finally got my hair cut. I know I make a big deal about my hair. Part of me loves my long hair but I do not like spending money on my hair because if you were a horse owner you would know that all our money goes to our horses. It is one of the most expensive hobbies/sports around and so where ever I can save a dollar – I do! I am going to say to the whole world that I color my own hair. I do have some blonde hair that grows naturally, but as I age I am getting some gray (I don’t mind that) but I also am a dark blonde, I call it a dirty blonde and so as my hair grows after I color there is a distinct darker shade growing from the roots. I can only go so long with this and I can’t stand it any more so I go buy a box of $8 dollar color and do all my roots really good. Then I am good for some months. AND to save MORE MONEY, I got a free hair cut!! From my hubby! Now that is something to SMILE about! 😀 😀 😀

I took a couple of selfies with my hair cut but to be honest, they are horrible. They are a bit blurry, I am terrible at selfies. I didn’t take a before photo so to be truthful it won’t mean much to show a photo of my haircut if you didn’t see the two inches that was cut before. I am smiling about my free hair cut because my manager at work came in a few months back with her hair all short and styled, including colored. As I was admiring her hair, I told her it looked great and she said it better look good as it cost her $400 dollars!! WHAT? I couldn’t believe my ears. Do you know how I am going to be spending $400 dollars next week? On my horses, of course! Because they are due their winter vaccinations AND Miss Chloe needs her shot for arthritis called Legend which will relieve the joint pain as the nights get cooler. Yes, I can appreciate how much it cost for women to look pretty but since I am a cowgirl at heart, all my money flows into my ponies. I’m smiling all the way to the bank with any way I can save a buck!

Miss Chloe needs a hair cut too! The horse next to Chloe is photo bombing my photo! Haha!
Her mane is all trimmed up nicely. We both got free hair cuts! YAY!

I absolutely love long hair. I braid my hair, or have it in a pony tail. BUT after awhile it gets out of shape and needs a trim. I am looking forward to being able to leave my hair down and/or use a clip to pull part of my hair back behind my head. I call this some up – some down. With the weather cooling down this was a great day to get my hair cut as I can wear it down and not get too hot. I hope you are having a great week! Thank you for stopping by my smile for this week. It is great fun to share!

Have a great week! 😀

~Diana

Weekend Coffee Share; Great Trail Ride Today!

Weekend Coffee share is a time to share with friends and family. What are you up to this weekend? Are you staying home and relaxing or enjoying the great outdoors?

I decided to share what I am doing this weekend which is enjoying my time with my horses. I sometimes get so darn busy I have to slow down and savor my days off and really stop and smell the roses, or smell the horse stables and the horses!! What made this day so incredibly enjoyable was a beautiful cool summer morning. It was a cool 65 degrees this morning at 9am and it warmed up to the low 80’s a definite improvement from 100 degrees which it topped earlier this last week. The week coming up will climb up again to 102 but am thankful it cools off in the evenings. I feel very thankful it does cool off here in Southern California. It has been a hot summer but not as bad as some summers we have experienced so I can’t complain. It is going to be beautiful tomorrow as well. So LOVING this weekend weather! I forgot, since I am talking about all this weather I think a nice iced Latte with almond milk would hit the spot for me, what are you drinking today? 😀

Hi Chloe and Zack! looking for their treat after our ride today. I now take Zack every time I ride out by having him follow me with a lead rope on his halter. It is called ponying, it is what they do when they take pack horses on long trail rides. He is in heaven walking along side of Chloe!
Please can I have a treat? I only spoil them after my ride, they were GREAT today!
Silly photo, they LOVE their treats!!

I went on the trail with my girlfriend Sally and her horse Gracie which I have shared many photos of them here on my blog. The 3 horses are like their own little herd and so enjoy being together. I am learning to pony Zack and we did not know how Gracie would be with both Chloe and Zack walking along side and she was perfect. We turn them all out together so it makes sense that they were just fine walking along the trails here in my home town of Norco. Today as we rode, I was just feeling so relaxed and was so very happy that I had both my horses with me getting some good exercise and we got to chat and catch up riding with my girlfriend. I am so lucky and thankful for such a great day. I hope to have many more! How is your coffee or tea? or maybe you are drinking some juice? How is your weekend going for you, I hope it has been as nice as mine. ❤

Zack after a nice grooming after the trail ride. He is a happy boy!
Chloe after our ride today. So funny I manage to catch her as she is taking a bite of her hay!

I was going to talk about some of my other projects that I do at home. I so enjoy my crochet projects but I think I will write a separate blog about that and I can take a few more photos of my project before I share. So I will just stick with my coffee share this weekend and keep focused on these pretty ponies. 😀 😀 😀

I am feeling so accomplished by getting more and more confident in taking them both on the trails. I am getting better at figuring out what to do if things go awry (for instance; one of the horses could spook at something, or they both could spook, I am thankful they are not really spooky horses.) You never really know what you may come across while riding throughout the neighborhood. But I do feel like both horses give each other comfort and I also feel like Chloe’s experience with me holding the reins gives them confidence as well. They are VERY responsive and aren’t the type to panic and the few little things that have come up so far we have managed with perfection. I am so excited to be riding and training them together on the trails because some day if I am able to move to Arizona, they will be good to go together and will already have the trail miles on them to start right out trail riding together anywhere where move.

I hope you are having a great weekend. I am so happy that I take the time to slow down and enjoy what I can when I can on my days off. I’ve enjoyed sharing as always, these ponies bring me so much joy and I am so happy, grateful and blessed to be able to ride and care for these beautiful animals!!

Horse crazy Grandma, Mom and Wife!

~Diana