"A horse is like a mirror, and it's reflecting what and who you are."

This is just a little diary of my horse life. I teach natural horsemanship and dressage. I am currently working on getting back to L4 Parelli after a car accident and surgery.

I suffered from a fear of failure, as things had not gone according to planned after my time off from my injuries. It had been an paralyzing disability (fear) but my healing is coming along nicely, and I hope to pass my level 4 before the end of 2011.

I don't know where I am going, but I am NOT lost!

I am now reviewing dvd's and books, and blogging my reviews. The link on the left in the categories (DVD Clinician Reviews)will take you straight to it. You will find links to the websites of all dvd clinicians I review and they are located on the left hand side bottom of page of the page. None of the clinicians or trainers I am reviewing, sponsor, endorse or authorize this site. For more info about them please click on thier link.

I hope you enjoy!

Savvy On,

I will be giving Savvy Star Ratings based soley on my opinion of it's value to a parelli student as such

***** Must own

**** Must watch

*** Worth watching, but you won't die without it

** Eh' take it with a grain of salt, you will have to filter alot

* OK, but there is better stuff out there to spend your time and money on

0 stars....skip it, it just isn't worth your time.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Cha'cote loves BGB ~ video

WOW, I can't believe how far he has come with that ball in jut a few days. LIBERTY with the ball, can you believe it?! Me either. He spent well over a year convinced that anything would kill him, most especially that ball. So this is just our third time playing with it and I am stunned at how much he likes it. I think he likes feeling like he can dominate something. Today he even tried to bite it. I am just tickled pink!

Savvy On

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Cox Wins Road to the horse 2011 with Parelli and Anderson

Honestly the true winners were Pat and Chris's colts.  it was evident from the first second that we were dealing with three very different sets of principles in regards to horse training.  Clinton and his horse fought most of the time and both nearly passed out from the pressure and fight that Clinton seemed to induce in this colt.  Both wringing and dripping with sweat, panting and likely near blind.  Yet at the same time, Pat and Chris had very different ambiance in thier round pens.  I think Chris could have done even better if he started off with a little less pressure on his colt in the beginning, but he was really good with release and retreat.  Clinton not so much.  Chris and Pat gave thier horse frequent breaks, Clinton, not one for the first hour and a half.  Pat did an amazing job of gaining this colts confidence right from the start.  He made it look easy.  I believe i missed round 2, but watched round 3.  clinton first, then cox, then pat.  I was astounded at the amount of fight clintons colt had during the obstacle round.  my personal opinion is that he created every ounce of it and that horse will likely forever be traumatized by a bit. 

chris did a great job staying out of his colts mouth, and helping a VERY unconfident colt trust him.  Pat's colt was started just the way i would want my horses started.  Kind, gentle, with confidence building first.  and in a hackamore.  preserving his mouth.  I personally think pat should have won, as his colt was the 100% hands down winner of a good start in life.  Pat bought the colt last night and named him partner.  he will be doing weekly updates of his progress and taking him to texas to his colt starting event.  Both Pat and Chris deserved to win.  Clinton....not so much.  I would never want a horse of mine started that way.  Clinton needs to open his eyes that he is skilled and could be so much better if he looked inside not only his heart, but also the heart of the horse.

When this comes out on dvd, it will be worth watching and would give this 5*****'s, just so you can see black and white right in front of your very eyes.  While still not a fan of weekend warrior colt starting, I was a fan of Pat's this weekend, that colt of his was offered a great deal and he took it.

Savvy On

Put your heart in your hand, and then you may touch your horse.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Cha'cote's first REAL saddle ~ video

Well, I let the Road to the Horse competition today inspire me to put that saddle on Cha'cote. Pat was amazing today. If had to chose to one of the three colts today, it would undoubtedly be Pats colt. Pat offered him a gread deal. I hope I offered Cha'cote a great deal too. He was fine puting it on. I discovered letting him smell things first only scares the bajeezers out of him. I just went straigt to it and he was fine. He walked off fine with it. But when I asked him to trot, and the flaps made sound, he showed his true introverted inner self, and froze like a statue. He would only take 2-4 trot steps and freeze. He never bucked and it took a good 20min before he could trot one whole circle on the 12ft line. But like everything else he does, I let him work it out his way, held his hand, and he figured it out. next time i will go all the way and put the saddle pad on too. unfortunatey my saddle doesn't fit him, too big. so i will not be able to ride him in it. ugh. but it is sufficient and pain free for just wearing. He looks handsome as a dressage horse and picture him all done up fancy and braided. he will make an ellegant horse some day. worthy of his wild breeding. what a good looking horse.

Savvy On

Cha'cote meets BGB...video

OMG......Friendly game with objects breakthrough.......Cha'cote conquers the Big Green Ball. At first he was right where we left off last year, which is.......'what ball, I don't see any ball?" He ended today making the biggest break through ever.....he engaged the ball and rolled it around the yard. I am still getting the hang of the video option on my phone and apperntly turned it OFF rather than ON.....during the whole roll the ball around the yard part. But I got a little bit on video where he solved the puzzle of.....move the ball out of pedestal alley and get on pedestal......Wooo Hooo for Chacote. i am one step closer to being able to start him under saddle. Once he is totally OK with the ball bouncing on his back from BOTH sides WITH a saddle on.....then I will contact one of 3 trainers i have chosen, and have them give him his first 7 rides. I will take it from there. Just can't risk making my body hurt any more than it already does.

Savvy On

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Cha'cote's first trail Walk

Today my friends came over and we went on a LONG trail....ride for them, companion walk for me and Cha'cote. I know I wont be able to walk tommorow, but I had a blast and more importantly, so did he. The hills were managable for my fat rear, thank god. it was B..E..A..utiful! I know our bond got alot stronger today and can't wait to do it again. He even found himself a mustang day spa, and nearly knocked over a dead bush gettign a good scratch in.....well you'll see it in the video. I love him so much and know that he came to me right when we could help each other the most. I thought I was saving him, but really he is saving me.
Hope you enjoy.

Savvy On

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Mind over matter.....fecal matter!

Good news about my mom.  She is doing better....finally.  This last surgery worked!!!!  Saddly for my poor mother, the whole incident was not caused by what they originally thought.....her gall bladder that they removed during her first surgery.  Nor the second thing they thought.......her 10yo hernia with intestines caught in it, that they shoved back in a sewed up during the second surgery.  Oh no....it was a a gall stone the size of two golf balls lodged in her small intestine close to her stomach.  So my poor mother was throwing up poop for 3 weeks.  Disgusting as that is, I can't even imagine how my mom felt about the 'matter'.  Small pun intended.

So I went to visit my mom today.  She has been in the hopital for nearly a month now and had 3 surgeries.  We were talking about how excited we were that everything was back to going the direction god intended it to....you know....the poop!  My mom, bless her heart, has the dryest sense of humor.  I never get her jokes.  So we were sitting there, and she got all serious as we talked about the ordeal, when she shared a secret with me.  She said, "ya know I thought I was going crazy the last few days because the poop didn't taste bad to me any more".  I sat there, staring at her not knowing if she was serious or joking, and then her eyes welled up with tears, and I knew she was serious, though I was already laughing.  Here I thought I finally got one of her lame jokes, and she was DEAD serious.  So I told her that maybe that was her brains way of re-wiring her taste buds, so that the torture wasn't so bad.  Either that or she WAS crazy, and I would have the doctor admit her to a funny farm, rather than let her come home.  Of course she did not get my sense of humor, and laid there staring blankly at me.  "MOM....I'm joking"............."oh....ok" she quietly whispered then burst out in laughter.  I guess we chock this one up to "mind over fecal matter" and hope we never have to go thru this again!  She is back to eating real food, something she hasn't had for a month, and wils be going to a rehab facility before being released to being tortured by me and my obviously great sense of humor....maybe her mind can convince her I am funny........HA HA HA......

Poop On Mom

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Please watch this video, horses need you NOW.....

there is NOTHING savvy about THIS!!

I can only imagine that this could have something to do with Cha'cote's fear of the trailer.

Read more about the budget cut, click here

Time to my self

Well, it does not happen very often....kinda like needing wild horses to drag me to it......but i am taking a day off of work tommorow.  Yup....trust me....i never miss work. never take vacations....someone literally must be sick or dying....and usually even if that someone is me....I still go to work.  I will have the house all to myself for nearly the whole day.  Hopefully it will stop raining long enough for me to spend a little time with my horses.  I just got 4 new dvd's from giddy up, so will have fun working on a few reviews.  Got some dennis reis, and another ray hunt benifit.  If nothing else, i will just enjoy the peace and quiet before my mom comes home from the hospital.  She has been there for nearly a month, had 3 surgeries, and we just dont know when she is coming home, or the level of intense care that she will need once here.  One way or another, we will figure out how to care for her until she is back on her feet, alive and WELL.  At the moment I feel like the weight of the world is on my shoulders.  My work, my family, my mom and my neighbors who hate my horses.  Good news is that I am looking forward to applying for a teaching position at work.  Finally a job I was born to do, that doesn't involve a ton of paperwork.  Wish me luck!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Another great horse commercial

THIS should have been a SuperBowl commercial!

Now I know what you are thinking, you should never drive anything while drunk.....that is why there is the back up plan.......Get your self some loyal and sober friends!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Parelli Connect is officially LAUNCHED!!!!!!

You can look for me there! Michelle Howard is thy name.

In case you aren't familiar with it, it is a social networking site like facebook, but for horses!!!  You can add personal pages for each of your horses, and also track your progress for each of your horses.  They have an online check list of tasks to do in each of the 4 savvies~Online, Liberty, Freestyle, and Finesse, and the task for each savvy is specific to the level of your study with each horse.  Pretty cool.  But what is really cool, is that they have made the level 1 video training series available to view online for free!  Not bad, considering you can become a member for a mere $10 a month and have access to thier million dollar video vault online.  It is a great value and a great resource and a great way to get support and meet new friends.

Savvy On
Michelle Howard

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

FREE tele-seminar tomorrow.....with....

Cynthia Royal.....and if you snooze....you can still not lose, as there is a way to get the audio for free.....check this link out NOW!!!  If you hurry you can even submit a question for Cynthia.

Run little ponies....RUN!


Savvy On

Saturday, February 5, 2011

gonna be a long day tommorow

Well, my mom is having her second surgery in 2 weeks tomorrow, and I will be there with one of my mark rashid books.  thanks to my moms accident and illness i have gotten alot of reading done!  I have spent way too much time in dr's offices and emergency rooms and waiting rooms and patient rooms and hospital rooms.......I forgot my book last visit and I was a little miffed as the chairs SUCK, and I had no cel phone service and was in a strange town.  Not tomorrow though.  All told I should be able to log myself about 4-5 hours of reading before the day is over.  Prayers for my mom that all goes well and her 'symptom' goes away.  Don't want to share the details as it is just too gross for words.  I feel bad for her, and really hope this surgery does the trick....I sure wouldn't want to be her right now.

On a lighter note, today was Cha'cote's 3rd time with the bareback pad and he did not shy away from it. He was concerned by it, but only for a second.  4 more times and I will switch to the saddle.  yee haw!

Savvy On

DVD Review: ***** Cynthia Royal "live clinic" #2

Live Malibu Clinic disc 2 *****

Holy smokes Batman....'shazam'.....this disk was finally available when I turned some in at giddy-up.  this two set dvd is not to be missed.  Disk 1 really explains the "whys", it is continued on this disk....but this disk has alot of the 'hows'.  She has one horse that she lets 6 auditors come in and do 'walking in sync' or  in WHR....'companion walking'. Anyways, it was really cool to see how different the horse reacted to each participant, the youngest a girl of about 5ys old. But then she pulls out all the stops and brings in, not together, 6 horses, all new to her and her method and I was blown away.  Blown away.  What she does with so little, and the difference she made in each of the horses by just 'being' with them.  I am not kidding.....I called a tow truck to get my jaw off the floor.  The reason this, both she and resnick are so friggin fantastic is that they show you HOW.  If you want to see the difference you can make in a horse before you ever put a halter on....get this dvd set.  you wont regret it.  Take your Liberty play to a whole new level....and even better, your relationship with your horse.  It was 3hs long full of info not to be missed.  I gotta watch it again so I can take notes.  It is one thing to show you a method with horses that already know it, but to show footage of what we all want to see....ya know....how do you REALLY get the horse like that......that's what we all want to see.....the finished product is inpirational, and even somewhat educational, but we all know when you start a totally new program, you want to see what it actually might be like on day one.  Well here it is.  Run, dont walk to her website or giddy-up to get this dvd set.  I know I have paid a hell of alot more in the past.....for a hell of alot less......wish I would have had this 10ys ago.....NO......30ys ago!

Make sure to follow this dvd set up with  her "how" of the rituals 'horsetalk relationship'

I just discovered the coolest thing.....for a mere $9....yes...just $9.....you can download this dvd set to your computer. If that is not the coolest thing....I dont know what is. However, there is a glitch and they are not offering it till probably march of 2011, check back at her site until it is offered. Click here to download from Cynthia's site.

I can't wait for the sun to stay up just a bit later, and the weather to clear up......man I am gonna tear these rituals UP!  Look out video camera.....you gonna get used and abused!

Savvy On

DVD Review:*** Karen Scholl 'cornerstone'

Cornerstone for communication.***

This is Karens intro dvd to her method.  Her having been a Parelli instructor, you will find her method in line with the Parelli program and for a new student it is a good dvd to get a different perspective on the techniques.  But you won't miss anything if you don't watch it. 

She talks alot in the dvd about the concepts, and for this upper level student it was too much....been there and heard all that before.  There was nothing in there that sheds any light to new techniques.  But it is straight forward and very informative and very discriptive on the details.  She is very light and very quiet with her horses, and one thing she doesn't seem to do is go to punitive phase 4.  BUT....in this dvd she is using a horse that is already well versed in the method and already very light and quiet.  She states in the dvd that her other dvd's use untrained horses and show more of what it might look like with a new horse or student.  However she doesn't say which dvd that would be in.

Things covered are the basics, such as:

desnsitzing (rhythmic motion), steady and rhythmic preasure

Skills covered in the dvd:

Friendly, Extreme friendly 'helicopter'
Rhythmic preasure: Backing several ways (yo-yo), turning the front end while leading in zone 2/3,disengage hind end.  Steady pressure: lower head, coming forward, backing from chest and nose, turning forehand, hind end, sideways.

I would have to say if you are a level 1, even a level 2 student, you might very well find this a really nice bonus to your journey.

Savvy On