Isn’t it always the small things that make all the difference? When we are working in our barns or with our horses, the simplest of conveyances can make life so much easier. I was thinking about this and wanted to give you a short list of tips and products that will make the upcoming winter months more convenient.
1. Do you tend to ‘miss place’ your small crops or lounge whips?
There are several styles of whip holders that you can easily mount right by the door or entrance of an indoor. If you practice at an indoor, you can mount them on a ledge leading into it so they can easily be reached and replaced even when you’re riding. I have found this to be a great tip. As I get my horse ready, put on my helmet, gloves and get ready to ride or lounge, it is so convenient to be able to ‘grab’ a crop or lounge whip as I walk to my schooling area. Nice and easy!
2. Blanket bars on each stall door
When you blanket and use coolers with more than a couple of horses in your barns, it’s so nice to be able to hang your blankets close at hand. Do you have blankets that are the same size-same color but belong to multiple horses? If you have straps adjusted and want to save time finding out which blanket goes to which horse, this will help you. RAMM carries
blanket bars and can custom make them upon request. I also like to have a blanket bar wall in my barn where I can hang many other blankets that ‘may’ be used or extra coolers. That way I’m not looking through boxes or ‘piles’ to find ‘just the right one’. Saves on time!
3. Mounting blocks
Yes, I was one of those people that would use anything that looked halfway suitable to stand on to mount my horses. (I don’t think I should go into that here!). But there is nothing like having a solid block to get onto a horse. You can make one – I have seen them made from wood or Styrofoam (these are larger but easy to move) and you do need to make sure that you will have a wide enough bottom surface so your not wiggling around when its time to ‘go’. Place your blocks at the area you most often mount your horse, by your barn door, in your indoor or in your riding area. Several in these locations make it so easy ~ and getting them or making them is a matter of just making or ordering them.
4. Heated Water Buckets, Insulated buckets, heated hoses
These products are my favorites – when we got our first heated water buckets, I was in heaven – and still am! No more chipping ice or having chips and cold water in my face! We also use the insulated buckets all winter and love how well they work. With out these convinces, our barn chores would be so much harder for us. Heated buckets require electricity, and insulated buckets do not. I hope you try one of these if you don’t have them already. Oh, by the way, you can get large 16 gallon heated buckets to be sure your horses get the water that they need through the winter.
5. Hay Cart
One of the best anniversary gifts that I received from my husband was a hay cart! I have used that cart for over (maybe I should not say how long or brag about my beloved gift :), 30 years! It’s very simple, but can hold 4 bales of hay (stacked) and the grain when I feed. I have used that hay cart to haul around saddles and harnesses, tack to the trailer, and buckets of water – you name it. The hay cart has been extremely useful and something I would truly miss if we did not have it!