EQyss Barn Barrier Spray Review

 Quick Tip On An All Natural Fly Repellant.

I got the opportunity to test this all natural fly spray, and have used it in all sorts of conditions for several weeks now.

There’s no oily residue, it smells absolutely fantastic, and it’s citronella free – for horses where that’s important.  I really like that it’s all chemical free, and it will not hurt the tack in any way.

eqyss barn barriew review

We don’t have heavy flies at the farm.  Only 5 horses, mostly living outdoors, very dry conditions and fly predators to keep the population down somewhat.  I also keep my mare on a feed through product for 2 or 2.5 months to help keep fly numbers low even more.

Still, the flies are there, and they’re pesky!  For us, an all natural product like this is not strong enough to do as good as the “oil based” ones like Pyranha etc.  And for those biting, tiny gnats that live where there’s grass and like to eat inside the ears, it does nothing.

eqyss fly spray review

Instead, I mostly use this spray during grooming time in the cross ties, and before a ride in the covered arena, where flies are always really light.

Great for use on a grey horse – no ugly sticky buildup at all!  If you have to go all natural, this is a good choice.  Just be ready to reapply often.

eqyss natural fly spray


Getting better all the time…

To all you “Before & After” lovers out there I give you this awesome 5 Month update from Horse Sage – https://horsesage.com/

Check out Starlight in the post “Getting Better All The Time” – tell me it doesn’t make you smile!

horse sage

Starlight is at a stage where progress happens fast. I know  plateaus will come soon enough, but I’m enjoying her willing attitude and aptitude for dressage.

What a dance partner she is!

A fellow blogging friend challenged us to a “before and after” post about our horse, so here we go: the first five months with Starlight

Starlight in March 2016 when I bought her:

DSC02900 Talking to Starlight before the vet check. You’re going to be my girl now (assuming you pass the vet check)!

A few weeks later, under saddle as we got to know each other. Looks at those happy smiles.DSC02965

In April, at the Woodside HorsePark on a cold windy day, having a clinic with Miguel Tavora, Starlight gets a little TOO enthusiastic about the canter depart!

Screen Shot 2016-04-11 at 7.51.36 PM Whoa there, girl! I don’t want to play Calamity Jane in this partnership!

Our first show, Training Level, six…

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Show Me Your Before & Afters!

This is your chance to post on A Horse For Elinor!

Time to give back to readers through sharing posts from you on this site.  Read on!

Told you before – I’m a sucker for makeovers.

It’s just plain wonderful to see some improvement, of any kind, in the horses we work with, isn’t it?!

This blog started with La Prima, in need of a serious makeover.  Didn’t take very long and she bloomed…

La Prima, Castle Rock Farm

Check out this short list of links to quick makeovers on this blog:

I have another fun one for Valiosa this fall.  A great one – and shorter, I PROMISE!  Won’t be until the end of November.  I’ll have to bribe my little photographer to come out…

But now it’s your turn – I want to see!

If you’ve posted a Horse Makeover, a Before & After, or just any horse update with improvements worth celebratingcomment in the comment field with a link to your post and I will put it up here on www.aHorseForElinor.com.

I know I’m not the only one who’d LOVE to see it!

Anything in the “before and after” department goes!  Posts featured here will go up on both A Horse For Elinor and on Facebook – A Horse For Elinor.  Join in the fun!

Thank you!


Wow, The Olympics…

Exhausting having to explain our elusive sport of chewing-gum-passage, sticky-asphalt-on-hot-summer-day-piaffe, and-half dead-retriever-dog-with-ball-free walk.

No one understands dressaaghe.  At least not many of my acquaintances.

Now that it’s over, and we’re past the shock of it all, can we at least agree on one thing?

We have a repeat, major badass, lovely Olympic winner and holder of multiple world records!

modern dressage at its best

She has horses with extremely little tension.  I don’t see that exaggerated front leg snappiness that comes from non-stop rollkur for 25 minutes.  Her hands are only forward thinking, and she seems very genuine.

Can we stop wasting time with attention on all the bad sides of Modern Dressage, and just celebrate?!

Forget the never-ending debate on the tight nosebands, blue tongue incidents, horrific news on the direction dressage is taking in Europe.  We have a rider who (at least apparently) is working with a system that actually works correctly.

Focus on the positive!  This is a time to celebrate.  The winner is incomparable to the direction of some other high level riders.  Let’s agree on that!


The minute I saw them, I knew they were both dying

You could tell from the way they were laying there.

Both lifeless looking and, yes, pale.  Could they lose their color overnight like that or had this gone on for months?  How could I miss this?  The signs so obvious – they looked neglected.  Abused.

One had a gash torn up on its left side.  The other was so tired it couldn’t stand up anymore, even with help.

Overworked, an understatement.

riding a horse in a mist of dust

They don’t even fit me right.  Too wide.  Still, they’ve held up for years of riding.  Awesome boots and they’ll last for many more schooling rides.  Gashes and all.

Forgot some, sure, but just these boots alone have been on top of:

  • Fosco
  • Bella
  • William
  • Wynona
  • Whitney
  • Wocelli – sure, it counts even if just hacking out
  • Carbo
  • Jordan
  • Harlow
  • Hugh
  • Skye
  • Storm
  • Silvius
  • Scooter
  • Hadrian
  • Hadrian FLF
  • Brady
  • Beringer
  • Allonsy
  • Dakota
  • Wakanova
  • Zorro
  • Oz
  • Amigo
  • Fleur
  • Rayna
  • Veri
  • Isis
  • Tully
  • Miley
  • Botijo
  • Zingara
  • Lancia
  • Cariñosa
  • Castiza
  • Gaucha
  • Cooper
  • Harely
  • Beringer, yes even him
  • La Prima
  • Jaworzno
  • Paris
  • Valiosa
  • Maxwell
  • Antonio
  • Gandolf
  • James Dean

And others, too short rides to remember their name.  Thank you, Ariat!


A Better Reaction To The Leg Aids

Happy Sunday – a lesson with Valiosa to resensitize her to the leg.

A true leg aid, with the calf in its proper place, not reaching back and nudging with the heel somewhere almost behind the saddle.

In the end, I know this will help get the seatbones firmer in to the saddle too, when the leg isn’t driving forward and squeezing the seat up and out.  You’ve seen plenty of that!

cantering with seatbones out of the saddle

I had spiraled into the habit of working way too hard for a reaction from Valiosa.  Easy to do, easy to recognize, yes, but I didn’t have the tools to get out of it.

I’ll be working on this, probably only on this, forget bending and lateral aids this week until confirmed.

So during today’s ride on our own, the leg aid has to be really specific, and short.  Just a clear, concise, and very timely light nudge with inside of calf.  On, and then OFF.  I can’t take it off quick enough.

And never, ever, asking repeatedly.  Are you sure you’re not nagging?  Ever?  Harder than we think, isn’t it?

New mantra for riding her  – “Legs are off, legs are off, legs are off.”

She has to keep up the gait, walk, trot, canter, on her own, and learn to balance in transitions on her own – if I’m there to rescue or help her all the time we will never get anywhere.  That’s another pretty big challenge.

With some new tools, sometimes it doesn’t take many rides until it becomes all sort of muddled again.  This has to stick!  I won’t find out if it truly has until more than 2 months.  Fingers crossed!

Cantering a young horse

Go Grey Mare!


Because Some Days You Just Have To Ride The Big Girl

With Video!

Olympic Dressage ramping up for the Freestyle on Monday in Rio.  There’s nothing here to be even half as interesting.  Still – #twohearts🙂

OK just don’t get too excited about the video. It was a test. Didn’t work out well.  This is not going to be a Video Site…  Find it at the end of the post

A Bareback On Misty sort of day.

riding bareback

cantering bareback

Great for those days you want to get really sore and stretched out🙂

riding draft horses

trotting bareback

And now, the reason you won’t see much video from me.  This is all – 20 seconds of nothing much.  Oh, but mounting.  Only possible with a tall mounting block🙂


Weighing The Hay

I love knowing just how many Lbs is in every haybag per day.

Our barn owner is fantabulous, because she weighs each hay serving for each horse.

I was half-fantabulous too, for a short while, until my lungs almost shut down and now I’m banned from hay duties.  Anyway, this little hay scale is golden!

Hay scale

Valiosa was getting a bit pudgy with her extra rest.  Knowing it was not because of eating some massive loads of hay, I could quickly adjust her grain.  All that weighing is So worth it!  She’s an easy keeper, so it’s always a bit of a balance job.

Below was last month in July;  learning to jump a low triple bar.  Some more of this, but mostly consistent riding, and she’ll be back down to perfect weight again.

free lunging and buckingI’ve liked her increased energy level though, hope we can keep it!

horse learning to jump triple bar


Monitoring The Degree Of Suckiness

I think there’s some real value in checking in with it now and then:

How badly we suck.  Was it a 10 today (You know, almost bolting out of the showring.)?  Or more of an 8 (General ugly riding.), or a 7, with a few good moments?

Our last ride I thought was around a 4, with Valiosa very compliant and feeling generally happy and forward.  Basic, but I was thrilled!

Worked her on very causally leg yielding at the walk from A to H or from M toward X and then straight.  (Always more difficult leaving the track vs going toward it.)  In trot?  Neh.

too slow leg yield in trot

Forgetting about correcting or “catching” her a lot with the outside rein, just really trying to teach the lateral aid.  She’s wonderful with this because even though it’s not a strength for her (She doesn’t feel naturally laterally gifted at all.), she never gets completely flustered, upset, or stops trying.  I value that in her a lot!

We didn’t get very far with anything new, but in general, we sucked less.  Yay us!

No secret – she’s FUN to hang out with!

having fun with your horse

This weekend – lesson at our barn with Alexis!  I was her working student for a year, it will be great to check back in with her with Valiosa!

Elinor Yee


Towards The End Of Summer Training

This is where we are now

She feels looser, and easier in the body.  More willing, and we’re definitely more of a team.  (On a good day.)

These are just some quick pic grabs – no time to get the real photos off the camera today.  I’m just thrilled that she can look decent for more than a split second.

So,  Photobomb!

young grey mare dressage

stretchy trot wtih young horse

This time, I rode her in several very short, 3-4 minute bouts, with lots of stretchy trot and walk on the buckle in between.

It’s both good and bad.  Great way to keep her happy, but difficult to really “get” anywhere, since it takes me a while to get her back together again.

half andalusian grey mare

half bred grey mare

half andalusian mare

grey young mare dressage

Yes, lot’s of stretchy trot.  Best if down and OUT, not just down.  Not there yet.

young dressage horse stretchy trot

At the end, a bit of no stirrup work, thanks to Leueen, of Horse Addict, who inspired me to do it with my young mare.

canter with no stirrups

We’re pretty derpy most of the time, but I’m beginning to see a little hint of light.  Don’t blink or you’ll miss it🙂

Elinor Yee

Have a lovely horse weekend!!