The Snowmageddon of 2023 will go down in history here on the Ranch. The lovely warm spell brought the heavy snow off the barn roof all at once – equaling 24+ tons of snow needing to be removed! Goodness gracious this was quite the site to wake up to!
Thank you to everyone who assisted with removing snow! Shoutout to owners and to volunteers who stepped up to do SO MUCH shoveling …. including Crystal Borstad, our grandson Lyric Wakefield, Natalie Hicks, and Bode and Zeke Drake! You were lifesavers!
Who is new at the barn!
Intermittent barn manager
We are introducing Reese! We are excited to introduce our new Barn Manager, Reese Horwatt. Reese will work part-time and manage the barn while we take a much-needed vacation or venture off to attend a horse clinic. Reese comes to us with extensive knowledge and experience, a great love for horses, and a natural gift to “eat, breath, talk, walk and sleep everything horses.” You can expect to see her around the barn quite a bit and we look forward to you all meeting her. Welcome to our barn family Reese!
We have a student volunteer who has consistently joined us at the barn. She brushes and blankets the horses, has lunged the pony, decorated the barn for Christmas, shows up on the cold nights, works hard, and has been a joy to have. Shoutout to Hunter for all the ways she helps out!
Our Grandson Lyric began helping with all the ins and outs of running the ranch in mid-December. He has learned the joy of 7 a.m. feeds, shoveled the goat run, shoveled Snowmageddon night after night, scooped the poop, hauled water, brushed, swept, and learned to do turn-outs. He has worked from sun up to sun down without one complaint …. and we caught him saying goodnight to the horses now. His funny quote while hanging out with us …. “Grandpa, I’ve been here so long they built a house next door.” “Grandpa, I’ve been here so long I am starting to talk to horses!” Hahaha. Did we mention there are four new houses being built on the six acres west of us?
Natural Horsemanship. This winter we have been focusing on the basics of equitation and balance of the rider. Equitation or proper riding posture is not just about looks! It is based on physics and has a huge impact on the safety and effectiveness of any rider. Students are constantly hearing me guide them to a balanced position. Something as simple as holding the reins incorrectly can throw the rest of a rider’s body out of position and hinder their riding. A few other horsemanship concepts we have been focusing on include pressure and release, feel and timing, and making the right thing easy for the horse.
Grab A Lesson. In addition to our regular lessons, ORR offered a temporary “grab a lesson” group instruction option, once a month, Jan through March, for students on our current wait list. We are not able to add additional regular weekly lessons at this time, however, offering this “grab-a-lesson” helped meet some of the needs of those waiting for more regular lessons. It has been fun getting to know some of these families and a highlight was having a group of sisters take lessons together!
Weekday Lessons and Camps. In other news, beginning in June, we will add lesson options to weekday evenings for those on our waitlist. We will also be calendaring two camps. Stay tuned in our next newsletters for dates. One camp will be for beginner riders and one camp will be for intermediate riders. We will begin taking registrations on the first of May and will send updates on availability for weekly lessons at that time.
Community Opportunities. We are looking forward to personally participating in other equine activities around the community beginning this April. We will be bringing our Granddaughter to camps and participating in clinics and organized trail rides. If you would like to know about other opportunities, we are happy to share information.
Our newest equine member
Cadillac Magic Style, known as Cadi in the barn, has settled in as the BOSS MARE. We are enjoying getting to know her personality. She is OBSESSED with pony Luna and does not like to be apart from her. She seems to be settling into this strange round thing called an arena that horses go around and around in. She was started on weekly shots of glucosamine. The shots, along with Osteo-Max, a low-sugar Senior feed, rice bran, and Haystack Special Blend seem to have been the magic concoction for freeing up her stiff shoulder and bringing out a little spice and sass.
Miss LuLu is back from her 90 days of college courses. She seems to have grown an inch and really filled out with muscle. It feels good having her home. We are pretty sure she is missing her running playmate, Nova. She tries hard to get all the oldies to play with her but they just look at her like she has lost her natural mind. The rest of the herd seems to wonder, ‘Why run when you can stand around and do nothing?’
Nova’s Song of Honor
Miss Nova, aka Sassy Pants, is growing up! She has been in Anchor Point for three months and is now under saddle. Little kiddos can mount, unmount and crawl up and down off either side. It has been fun to watch the progress she is making with 7 Star Horsemanship/Anna Gregory. My favorite video was her being told to get in the (horse) trailer, and she turned and jumped right in (liberty style!). We enjoyed a visit to her a few weeks ago and are pleased with our decision to share our little sweet girl.
TO THE BARN FAMILY
Thank you for all your hard work to keep up with your stall-run snow removal. The better we do now, the more we can avoid the dreaded break-up flooding in the Spring.
Speaking of Spring, is anyone else ready? We are gaining daylight! We plan to upgrade all stall runs to moveable metal panels and to do “just one more” renovation on the tack room. And maybe, just maybe the hay shed will get an upgrade this summer.
Wishing you all a great 2023, full of health, happiness, and horses!
Ken and Bobbi Outten