cropped-cash-jack-apple-tree-2.jpg

How To Make Your Own Cavaletti’s Without Breaking The Bank!!!

Like any working equestrian I have a very limited pocket book. Since I’m operating out of my own place I don’t have any fancy equipment and upon looking online I quickly realized how expensive something as simple as jump standards and Cavaletti ends are, not to mention the poles to go with them.

Obviously I cannot afford to buy enough of those to make it worth it…ok I probably couldn’t even afford one set of standards SO I decided to attempt making my own Cavaletti’s. Now let me just say that there are fancier probably longer life spanned Cavaletti’s out there but for about $8 a piece I managed to make my own that work just perfectly for now!

*Some notes here*.

The 2X4 pieces I’m using I got for free at my local feed store. At least here in Washington a lot of the feed stores set out a “junk” pile that usually includes pallets, blocking and all sorts of goodies. So I swing by and pick up any usable wood I can find. However if your stores do not A long board at home depot runs about 7 dollars and you can get enough two foot sections to make one Cavaletti and if I remember right they were about $8 dollars for pressure treated wood.

The poles I’m using are 3-4 inch 8 foot fence posts since I prefer round to square poles.  I tried to find the standard 10 foot but I couldn’t without paying about $20 or more a pole and having them shipped to me. As of right now those poles run about $6 a piece and were the most expensive piece in the whole thing.

I’m using 4 inch screws and 3 1/2 inch nails.

Once I got it down a system down I can build one in about  5 minuets or less and they are working great so far! 😀  I will eventually try to get a better video for you guys but it was just me so I only had my phone! If you have any questions at all please let me know and I’ll do my best to answer them!

cropped-cash-jack-apple-tree-2.jpg

Teaching lessons…and getting a few in return

These last few weeks have been quite a blur of activity both at work and with the horses and in-between all the craziness Cash has blown my socks off. I always wondered what I would find that he truly loves.  Well I can say I finally found it in the most unexpected of places and in finding it he  has suddenly given me back something that I have greatly missed.

One of my favorite things to do is teach. I love sharing with other people what I know about everything equine related and I especially love teaching beginners and children. There is something that is just so fun about seeing a kid who’s a little shy and insecure start working with horses and  become confident and sure of themselves and truly blossom. Cash has decided his lot in life is teaching children and I never would have thought he would excel here.

As Cash was growing up I had visions of jumping cross country and galloping through fields and all things adrenaline filled. But as Cash and I began working together we came a crossed hurdles that I didn’t expect. For a long time we clashed personality wise.  There was many a time I contemplated selling him. We are both alpha personalities and it took a very, VERY  long time for us to get on ground we both understood and accepted. I still have visions of competing him but as the days have gone by I’ve started to notice him not enjoying jumping as much,  and well he’s always abhorred dressage.

While I was over in Greece Cash was at home with my family and was mostly a couch potato but he did do some lunge lessons for my mom. I didn’t think twice about it until I got a working student to help me with the chores around the barn…because who doesn’t need an extra hand or five for all the chores?
Screen Shot 2016-05-08 at 7.01.34 AM
On a whim I decided to teach her lunging since she’s never learned how to do it on a lunge line. Cash was an angel. He didn’t put a hoof wrong and in fact took the time to teach her how to do it right.  He was calm and quiet. A gentleman in every sense of the word. If I had been lunging him he would have bucked and galloped and tugged on the rope and yet with my working student he just calmly trotted and cantered in a circle. As she was testing out what I was telling her I could almost hear him going “Now child that’s not right” every time she cued wrong and he’d continue doing what he was doing until  she got it right. Then he’d get this look like  “ah yes there we go,” and do what she asked. It was a heart melting sight and one that kind of humbled me. For once Cash truly said “Trust me” and I really listened and I’ve been payed back ten fold by it.

As he has continued his role of teacher to several people now  he has reminded me that though we have plans in life, they don’t always work out how we envisioned. In fact, many of my plans rarely work out how I planned. But when those plans go awry sometimes what becomes of them is even better then the original outcome.  He’s taught me to laugh and to relax and most of all to trust him. He knows what he’s doing with kids and under my watchful eye and directions he’s slowly teaching a new generation the love of horses. Screen Shot 2016-05-08 at 7.00.01 AM

Sometimes a horses perfect place is someplace unexpected and a wondrous surprise.  THANK YOU to my amazing horse Cash for not only giving me back one of my passions but also reminding me that trust and happiness is not far away, we just have to be willing to try something new in order to find it.

Until Next time.