We moved to Maine a year ago. Our house sits on a rise overlooking a beaver marsh. We named the property Turtle Hill because turtles lay their eggs here. Right now is prime nesting season. We are thrilled to see these ladies.   The view to the front of the […]

Tonka’s Thoughtful Place


Tonka and I have been busy. This week we’ve done a broad range of activities, from trail riding to jumping, and my horse has been enthused and game for all of them. Several of our rides were flat work in the arena. I focused on cadence and an engaged topline. […]

Stop to Smell (Eat) the Flowers


One of the fun – and distracting – things about this new world of meeting people in Zoom is that you can see their bookcases. Most people people shelve books without thinking until they’re all jammed together, collecting dust. A college textbook, a children’s picture book, a how-to manual and […]

On My Bookshelves



Do you recognize your horse’s happy face? A horse’s expression can be hard to read. We humans are clued into smiles. That’s why we like dolphins so much – even though they’re not actually grinning. It’s why it’s common to think that birds don’t have emotions – because their beaks […]

Your Horse’s Happy Face


After an almost 2 month break, Tonka and I have resumed our jumping lessons. Tonka says that it’s about time. We eased into it. I brought him back to work with walking and gymnastics and trail riding. We had a lesson over poles to get his hocks and stifles loosened […]

Having Fun Over Jumps


On Saturday I trailered Tonka to Turtle Hill. He’s been here enough to get comfortable with being near a body of water. In the past, riding near ponds and rivers put Tonka on high alert. No longer. Tonka is also at ease being on his own. So, we had a […]

Tonka the Explorer



The quarantine break of 5½ weeks gave me the incentive to get serious about doing cross-training with Tonka. When you keep your horse at a boarding barn that has an indoor arena and limited trails, it’s all too easy to stay in the ring. But after a month of total […]

Horse Cross-training Success


Here is how to catch a horse: Don’t. I’m not being flippant. Your horse associates being caught with what comes after. If every time you walk up to your horse the consequence is less rewarding than what they’re doing at the moment, then they’ll keep their distance from you. Are […]

How To Catch A Horse


Tonka usually goes right onto the trailer. The other day I led him from his big paddock to the rig.   Almost at the trailer, Tonka stopped and planted his hooves. I tried to get him to shift his weight and move on. I gave a little tug on the […]

Trailering Disobedience?