C’Mon. I walked in Costco before Halloween and there were Christmas things all over. There is something wrong with that. What happened to decorum? What happened to letting us feel our seasons? Are our lives being dictated by Hallmark?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against decorations or holidays. I think we should celebrate anything as often as we can… What I hate is having it shoved into my visage when it is way too early to digest. Christmas happens after Thanksgiving. It has always been that way and I like to keep that sort of thing in line.
Alright. I’m getting off of my soapbox long enough to bring you some items I’ve been thinking would make good equiney gifts and stocking stuffers. I have a ton of ideas so I may do this a few times this month. So, here is the first installment and I hope you get some ideas or at least, have some fun!
1) DRESSAGE TRAINING ONLINE: I think this fits into the ‘gift’ category because you can buy it for yourself or for someone you know via a gift certificate. (The problem with purchasing a gift certificate for someone else is that if the giftee gets hooked, then they have to assume the membership and therefore you are essentially helping them get hooked on something with a monthly fee. But, the good news if you are a dressage addict, this service could be a good one!)
I know nothing about dressage. But, the idea of this website is that for a monthly fee ($28.80) you can view over 400 training videos at any level and from several well-known trainers. Also, they have videos from dressage judges that show you why they deducted points from a rider or why one rider is the winner over another.
I am hoping this is a nice gift for a dressage person… It is waaaay less expensive than purchasing 400 videos, or even a few videos. I like the idea of being able to pick and choose what you’d like to see. And, if you don’t like the video, you don’t own it and then have to recycle it. Or, if you like a video, you can view it as often as you want. Or, you can find out if you like an instructor’s style before you buy. If you do like an instructor, you can follow all their videos. Or mix and match… It seems like a win-win.
It costs $36 to join. Then, you pay the monthly fee. For me, I learn by viewing and also by watching myself. So, this is step #1 if you are a visual learner. I don’t know the movers and shakers in the dressage industry. But, if you do, take a look and see what you think. Here is the link.
2) HOLIDAY CARDS: I found these cards on the Hoofprints newsletter. Now, Hoofprints was created for farriers. So, yup, you guessed it… almost all the cards have a hoof or a shoe on them. But, you can specialize the greeting and there is quite a variety for a fairly low cost. I picked out a few that I liked especially…
3) WREATHS: While I was on the Hoofprints newsletter, I saw two wreaths on cards that looked really fun to make! The first one is made of horse shoes. I’m guessing the wreath shown was welded together but I bet you could do it with wire. Then, you could decorate it with ribbon or pine cones or or anything and just attach it to the wire. I thought it was a great idea. Am I the last to have seen this?
The other wreath was made out of a lariat or rope. Really simple. you just wire it together and decorate it. Fun! Easy! Won’t slowly disintegrate…
4) SWEETBIRD STUDIO STUFF: I love anything from here…
But, my fav are these bridle/saddle angel amulet charms… It says, “Protect this horse”.
I have one for Finn. You can personalize it for yourself or gift it to anyone with a horse. For some reason, I love giving Finn some excellent jewelry that also offers ‘protection’ on trail rides. I’m not sure if it really works, but I feel better knowing his bling has a purpose.
5) DONATION CERTIFICATES: I’m going to whip up a few designs for these to be stocking stuffers or gifts for your friends and family that benefit certain horses or rescues that we love. I will personalize the certificate so that your donation next month (December) can double as a gift for someone. IE: A donation in your name was sent to _________ for TONTO by YOU.
I think this will take the sting out of donating when you know you need to be purchasing gifts for family and friends but you really want to donate to a great cause, too. Maybe there are people on your list who would really appreciate being part of the good fight. More on this later.
6) ENSLAVED BY DUCKS: This is a book for the non-animal person who is part of or living with an animal person… I loved this story. It is about a guy who falls in love with a woman who loves animals, fowl especially. So, he has to go along with it, albeit with a shrug. Little by little, these fowl grab his heart and take him on a wild ride of true adventures on a farm. I was very charmed… The author is Bob Tarte and he still lives on the farm with his wife and menagerie. His new book is called FOWL WEATHER. I haven’t read it yet.
7) ‘HORSES WHO PAINT’ HOLIDAY CARDS: Maybe you have all heard about the horses who paint… I’ve seen them on FaceBook, too. Anyhow, they put out some Christmas cards that I admired. I liked that each painted card also has a photo of the horse, Romeo, painting as well as his bio.
I have always loved Holiday cards that have a personal touch. And, a card like this could bring an appreciation of horses to non-horsey people. You can order these through the Hoofprints newsletter as well. Here is the link. Scroll down the page.
8) Do you get the Soda Creek catalog? I didn’t either until this last month…
As I was flipping, oh now that isn’t true… I don’t flip, I really LOOK… OK, so as I was looking through the catalog I found two things that I thought were really fun.
The first was a wreath made out of shot gun shells. Now, I’m not a gun person. So, this has nothing to do with my persuasions. I merely thought it was clever. But, the thought of making this myself seemed daunting… And, I don’t have any target practice nearby to pick up pristine shells… So, you could purchase one, already made with lights inserted here. I think this is very unique!
The other great idea in this catalog was the engraved dog collar. I have one for Dexter and it has saved us many times! People can see the phone number without having to mess with tags. It is truly much easier should your dog become separated from you. And, this leather collar is much less expensive than what I payed for a nylon version. So, I think this is a great idea to gift your dog with a new, snazzy, phone number embedded collar! Click here.
9) AT-CHOO JEWELRY: A very long time ago, when I was in college, I worked at a very fancy restaurant in Los Angeles. While there, I met an artist (who was working as the cashier there) named Elaine Seamons.
Well, lo and behold, several years later, she has a very successful jewelry line. And, as I remember correctly, she always loved her little doxie dogs. So, it was no surprise when I noticed that she had a whole series of dog collar jewelry. I’m not affiliated. I just like her ideas. And one of her ideas that I like best is that purchases help fund Cancer Treatment Grants for working dogs. Nice!
But, what I thought was touching were her memory tags… Having lost a few wonderful pets recently, these kinds of symbolic gestures seem to carry a primitive and ‘maybe pagan but it feels good’ type of closure.
Anyway, if you are a dog lover, check out this link and then click around. I think you will find some unusual and fun jewelry!
10) Get this for yourself and your horse! I received an email that said that Equion (an all around supplement that my horses have been eating for years and I love it and my trainer loves it…) is 15% off on the website. Here is the link.
Truly, my trainer used to ask me how come my horses looked so good coming into training and I told him. He started using it and it made a huge difference. You will love it and it has a 90 day guarantee! (I’m not affiliated…)
11) ON MY WISHLIST: I want this coffee table book. It just looks yummy and I love the cover by one of my favs, Teresa Elliott. I saw that it isn’t yet at Amazon. You can click the photo to purchase.
So, that is enough for now… I have a whole stack of ideas that I will be posting here and there. I hope you saw some new things and maybe have some Holiday Inspiration now! Thanks for coming along…!
HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth… if you like this, please pass it around!
The November Bucket Fund will benefit The Wild Horses and Burros, via DreamCatcher Sanctuary. We are helping them acquire an additional 20,000 acres to release more captured Mustangs/Burros back into the wild. To learn all about the Bucket Fund and to donate to this incredible opportunity for our Mustangs, please click on the photo (photo credit, Trish Lowe)