Last weekend I headed up north for the Great Minnesota Get-Together, or for the uninitiated, the Minnesota State Fair. My mom and I spent the whole day at the fairgrounds, and somewhere in the haze of exhibits, vendors, and second-servings of cheese curds, we stumbled across something truly fascinating: draft horse barrel racing.Read More
Since I’ve owned Heyleigh, she’s been boarded at four different barns. I’ve ridden at two other barns long-term, and I’ve been in countless others for tours or meetings for various equine clubs/teams. To the best of my recollection, every single one of them had a lounge. Despite having the same name, the actual functions of the rooms varied drastically.Read More
Heyleigh has made some pretty significant strides this year. From figuring out how to trot without her nose in the air to jumping most jumps on the first try, I'm very impressed with how far she's come given my extremely limited amount of time in the saddle.Read More
Six years ago Friday, Heyleigh officially became my horse. Looking back on all those years I can't help but be amazed at how much we've been through together. When my family bought her, the main thing we were thinking about was signing the papers as quickly as we could so that her old owners (who were extremely neglectful and borderline abusive) couldn't change their minds about selling her to us. She was only barely rideable, was pretty skinny, and had probably only seen a farrier once or twice in her life.Read More
While classes at Rose won't start up again for another month, Heyleigh and I have taken the leap and started taking lessons again. I originally started lessons back in 2008, and took them pretty constantly until around summer 2013 when I started working at Dover. For a while, my schedule there was so erratic that I couldn't keep to a normal lesson schedule. I still took them whenever I could, but it wasn't every week. Once I started college, all bets were completely off. Between the workload at Rose and the expense, it just wasn't possible; I got some pointers from instructors, but no real lessons.Read More
When I was a senior in high school, I applied for and won NCWIT's Aspirations in Computing Award (Basically an award for girls interested in coding) at the state level. It was a nice award; I got to go to a local awards banquet, got a bag full of fun swag (including a Samsung tablet), and an interview with the local newspaper and TV station. It helped me later on when I got to list it on my college applications. After I got accepted to Rose, I put it on my freshman resume, and figured I'd never think about it again.Read More
Heyleigh may be the only horse I have, but she certainly isn't the only animal I own. Between Heyleigh, my two cockatiels, a goldfish, and the family dog, I have something of a menagerie going that I've yet to introduce on this blog. Unfortunately, Heyleigh is the only one who was able to come with me to Indiana, but I still impose on my mother to let me Skype with the rest of them from time to time.Read More
Like most horse owners, colic surgery is one of my biggest fears. An incredibly expensive surgery without particularly good survival rate? It's enough to make anyone shudder. So far I've been lucky; Heyleigh rarely needs anything beyond routine medical care, but I always worry that someday she'll colic to the point of needing surgery, or have some other medical expense come up that I can't reasonably deal with. A couple of years ago, that drove me to look into ways that I could pay for an equine medical emergency if it ever came up.Read More
I've never had much luck with planners or lists. I got a new one every year from school since elementary school, and I bought one or two myself whenever I got on a organizational kick. I tried using them in all kinds of different ways, and sometimes it would work decently well for a few weeks, but it would always wind up forgotten at the bottom of my backpack.Read More
I'm about two weeks into my internship at Hope Haven, and so far I'm really enjoying it. The have me working on a lot of different projects at the same time, which is actually really fun. My favorite project at the moment is modifying an existing project that records how much weight riders put in each of their stirrups.Read More
Over the course of the last school year I'd been getting more and more sure that Heyleigh had a saddle fit problem. After doing some research, I realized that she had a forward girth groove. I got a total saddle fit girth, which helped keep her saddle from slipping forward, but I was still having a lot of the same issues. The biggest problem I was having was that all the signs of poor saddle fit listed in magazines and saddle fitting websites are pretty much the same signs of a really crabby mare.Read More
Unlike last summer, my plans for this summer almost exclusively involve engineering and equines. I was lucky enough to get an internship at Hope Haven, an equine therapy organization near my school.Read More
After two months, I was finally reunited with Heyleigh! She spent couple seconds giving me her "do I know you?" face, but remembered who I was really quickly when I brought out the horse treats. (They were the ones I made from the NicerBait mix; she loved them)Read More
These last few days have been very busy. In a couple of days I'll be leaving my house and on the road back to Terre Haute, so I've spent a lot of time packing and cleaning. This year I'm trying to bring as little with me as possible so that my dorm room doesn't get to cluttered. However, I haven't been able to restrain myself in a similar fashion with things for Heyleigh. I went on a mini shopping trip to pick up some necessary supplies like fly spray and crush cleaner, as well as some not-so-necessary things like a new western girth (on clearance!) and a new brush. I also bought a full set of used Wintec Easy-Change gullet plates to try to get Heyleigh's saddle to fit better.
On a more fun note, I talked myself out of buying loads of German Horse Muffins by making up the Nicker Bait Cookie Mix that I received in my December Horsebox.Read More
Since I'm currently without access to my horse, I figured I'd take the time to finally sort through all of my tack. All of the tack that I left at home, anyway.
Because I have no access to my parents' garage when I'm in geographical proximity to my horse, the vast majority of what I left behind were the dregs of my collection. Some of it is junk, and some of it just doesn't have any reasonable use for me or Heyleigh.Read More
Here's a quick recap of the first 10 years of my life:
Years 1-3: Not really a conscious being, learning how to human.
Years 4-5: I like ponies! And dinosaurs! And making things! and memorizing infomercials!
Year 6: Saw Spirit: Stallion of the Cimmaron, I need a horse; preferably a mustang.
Years 7-8: Please! Just one more chapter of The Black Stallion book 64! Also, I still like making things.
Years 9-10: Overnight horse camp, *yawn* my parents won't catch me reading just one more chapter of The Black Stallion book 342 at midnight, engineers make things? As a job?
Then, Year 11 hit. This was the tail end of elementary school, and I had finally convinced my parents to let me start riding lessons.
This is also when I met Heyleigh.Read More
Despite the title, I start this blog as neither an equestrian nor an engineer. Well, not for the summer anyway. My name is Amelia, and come the start September I will be a sophomore at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, a small engineering school in Terre Haute, Indiana.Read More