Queen Izabelle

Joining The Chestnut Mare Club | Introducing Izabelle

Well, the cat’s officially out of the bag on both my Facebook page and my Instagram, so I guess it’s time to make it official here on the blog! I BOUGHT A NEW HORSE!

She has been home a couple of weeks, so since everything is final and the new girl is settling in at her new home, it’s time to formally introduce her to the world.

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Welcome to the family, Izabelle!

All About Izabelle

Izabelle is a 16.2 hand, rising 7 year-old Argentinan Warmblood mare. Her registered name with Silla Argentina is Classic Porsche, but I have decided to call her Izabelle or “Izzy” for short. She is chestnut with three socks and a star, and her birthday is 12/16/2012. She was born in Argentina and lived the first few years of her life there as a prospective broodmare. However, in August, she was imported here to the states to pursue a career as a show horse.

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She started her hunter career this past year and has been lightly shown in the baby green hunters by her breeder, who is now based out of South Carolina. For our first few shows, I plan on taking it slow by doing the 2′ baby green hunters. I want to make our first few outings together as successful as possible. However, my ultimate goal for her and myself will be to eventually do the 3′ hunters!

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How It Happened

Shortly after Diesel went home to be with his new mom (you can read about that here), I began seriously searching for my new partner both locally and online. I only had a few must-haves for my new horse: 16 hands+, safe, sound, and uncomplicated. Sounds pretty straightforward and easy to find, right? WRONG! If it was safe and uncomplicated, it wasn’t sound. If it was sound, it wasn’t safe or even remotely suitable for an amateur. If it was both sound and safe, it was either a solid 14 hands or $60,000. 🙃

Out of around 150 ads that I looked at, we decided to go and try four horses in person. I also sat on two horses that were for sale at our farm. Neither of the horses I tried at the farm quite clicked with me, so we started the tedious task of driving around the state to try the four horses we liked from their ads. Sadly, none of the horses that we initially travelled to look at were a good fit for me. Two of them ended up having previous injuries that would not be suitable for a long-term career over fences, and the other two were decidedly not a good fit for me or our program despite what the owners had said over the phone.

Then, one day, while casually scrolling through Facebook, I remembered an ad for a cute chestnut mare that my trainer had tagged me in the day after we listed Diesel for sale. It was not financially feasible for me at the time to be seriously looking at horses since Diesel had not been sold yet, so I had put that ad out of my mind assuming that the horse would be sold by the time I got ready to start seriously looking.

I couldn’t get the mare out of my mind, so I decided to take a chance and message the seller to see if the mare was still available. To my surprise, she was still available and was within my budget, so two days later my trainer and I made the drive up to Aiken, SC to try her out.

She was everything that we hoped she would be and more! Safe, quiet, uncomplicated, and super sweet. Even though she has only had professional rides her whole life, she handled my amateur mistakes in stride and tried her best to do everything I asked her to do. It sounds a little cheesy, but she made me feel so comfortable and confident that I felt like I had been riding her my whole life.  To say I was in love, was a bit of an understatement to say the least!

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Trying Izzy in Aiken, SC!

Four days later, we hooked up the trailer, drove back to Aiken, had a PPE done, and brought her home the same day!

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Ready to go home!

I am super excited for our future together! Izzy has already blown me away with how sensible and quiet she is. Her first few rides at the farm went spectacularly, and we have already had two jump lessons that were both phenominal. In the next few days, I will be rolling out some lesson updates featuring our first courses together, so be sure to check back in for that!

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Adventures Of Diesel

A Bittersweet Goodbye

Last Thursday morning, as the cool, early-morning air hit my sunburnt cheeks and the sun rose just over the horizon, I put my foot in the stirrup, took the reins, and climbed my way onto Diesel’s back for the last time. We did what we always did on flat days. We took our time mozying around the arena working in some big swooping serpentines to warm up and worked our way into the trot and then the canter.

After we finished up with our work in the arena, I swung open the gate to his pasture and took him for a walk around the field like we always do on the days I flat him. However, this time was different. This would be the last time I would ever get to share this moment with him. I closed my eyes and took the time to memorize the sound of each of his footfalls hitting the dew soaked grass and the feeling of the cool morning air against my skin as we wound our way around the field.

As we turned around to head back towards the barn, I took some pictures to remember the view from between his ears, and I told him how much he meant to me. I told him about how much I loved him and how thankful I was for having the opportunity to call him mine. And finally, I told him about the wonderful woman who was eagerly waiting for him to arrive, how much she was going to love him, and all of the wonderful things that are waiting for him at his new home as a dressage horse. And when we approached the barn, I dismounted for the last time, buried my tear-soaked face in his neck, and then told him, “how lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.”.

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Later that day, after all of the kids from horse camp had gone home, I pulled him out of his stall, groomed him one last time, and put on his shipping boots. Tears filled my eyes as I stuffed him full of his favorite peppermint cookies and loaded him onto the trailer. Then, I watched as the trailer pulled away with my bay unicorn inside.


Today I signed the final piece of paperwork, so I had to officially say goodbye to Diesel and write an ending to this chapter in our lives. Even though he left last Thursday, it really didn’t feel real until I opened the email containing the bill of sale with his new owner’s signature on it. That was a really bittersweet moment for me.

While I know that this is the best decision for both of us, I can’t help but feel sad that Dies will no longer be waiting for me at the gate when I get back to the barn. When I walk into that barn, there will be an empty stall where he once was and an empty place in my heart.

Selling him has been one of the hardest things that I have ever had to do – I’m even sobbing as I am writing this. He has been my absolute world for the last two years of my life and will always hold a special place in my heart. However, it was the best thing to do for both his happiness and wellbeing and mine. There were many reasons as to why this decison was made, but all that needs to be said is that he and I were not meant to be. This was made clear for me when I saw his new owner ride him for the first time. They are a perfect match in every way, and when she rode him, it looked as if he was made just for her. 

Diesel has found THE perfect home with someone who will love and cherish him just as much as I have, and I couldn’t be more happy for them. ❤️ That, in itself, makes it a little easier for me to say goodbye.

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Adventures Of Diesel

AAHJA Show and HJ Fox Show Recap

Life has been crazy busy with college and the beginning horse show season, so I’m a little late to the game with blogging about our first two shows of the season! By a little late, I mean almost a month late – oops! 😬

There isn’t a whole bunch to say about either show in particular, so I thought it would be fun to just condense the two into one post. After all, I think it’ll keep everything a little more manageable. We’ll see how this goes haha!

Idlewild Farms | AAHJA Show Series

We were super lucky for this show because Georgia decided to grace us with a beautiful, dry weekend after weeks of constant rain! We decided to take full advantage of the lack of rain and decided to kick off the show season by entering Diesel into a small schooling show 15 minutes from the farm.

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Expectations for this show were set very low. My trainer decided to enter me and Dies into the 18″ or 2 ft division just to assess where we were at confidence-wise. However, being able to get on and w/t around without incidence would have been a win in my book. This was for a few reasons: 1) this was Diesel’s first time off property since October, 2) his under saddle time has been very limited due to Georgia’s recent decision to adopt a monsoon season, and 3) this was his first time at this particular farm.

Since it was just a one day show, we decided to trailer in that morning and just stay the day. This was all fine and dandy until Dies decided being tied to the trailer was for the birds and promptly untied himself in order to take a quick walk-about around the farm. Sigh.

Other than that, the day went pretty smoothly. Dies ended up being pretty darn great for our o/f courses and gave me the confidence boost that I needed in order to start preparing to move up to the 2 ft in the next couple of shows. We had a few moments where I had to remind him that we needed to go turtle speed for the adds, but overall, he was a very good boy. The flat, on the other hand, was not our best performance. It wasn’t terrible, but Dies was definitely not on his A-game. For some reason, he was convinced that the standards standing beside the arena fence that had been there the entire day suddenly wanted to eat him, and once he got his mind on that, it was history.

 

Despite our adventurous flat class, Dies and I managed to pull our first champion together! Granted, it was a small class though. 😂

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March Classics | HJ Fox Show Series

This show was Dies’s first official show of the season. I call this show the first official show because it consisted of him being stalled away from home for the weekend. Of course, if you knew Diesel in real life, you would know that he considers this a very big deal on Fridays. Saturday and Sunday? No big deal. But Fridays? Yeesh, we’re a screaming, spooking ball of anxiety.

Fridays are always a bit of a circus for us with all of the commotion created by the trailers coming in and out, but this one, in particular, was quite a doozie. He just would not settle down. I keep telling myself that this too shall pass, but I can’t help but think, will it? It certainly doesn’t seem like it. I mean, the guy has a whole year of being exposed to the Friday schooling craziness and showing at this venue under his belt, but for some reason, he still just cannot handle Fridays. Maybe we’ll get there… someday.

 

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At least he’s cute though! 

 

He redeemed himself on Saturday and Sunday by being a perfect muffin for his first ever 2’6 classes! There is a lot we need to continue to work on (i.e softness to the fences and raising his confidence over bigger fences), but for his first show at this height, he did wonderfully. He had nice, solid changes and was pretty adjustable throughout each course, so I consider that a success. Not to mention, he even managed to snag 3rd place in his first ever hunter handy course out of a large class!

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I think the highlight of this show was when he stepped out of the 2’6 ring with my trainer and went straight into carting me around the mini hunters! Being able to make the transition from 12 ft strides and changes to doing the adds was a huge milestone for him as it shows just how much more mature he has become over the winter. I couldn’t be more proud of him!

 

Overall, it was a great first show of the season for Dies! Like always, there is still so much that we need to work on in order to get him performing his very best, but boy, he has really come a long way since the beginning of last season!

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Dies seems pretty proud of himself too!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adventures Of Diesel

Diesel’s First Show Season: A Review In Photos

Since the new show season is scheduled to begin really soon, I thought now would be the perfect time to summarize this past season, Diesel’s first full show season. However, instead of writing that out in a really long post, which I KNOW none of y’all want to sit through, I thought I would break out the pictures and do a show season in review photo extravaganza. So sit back, break out some popcorn, and enjoy! 😁

January: UGA IHSA Team Horse Show (Diesel’s Second Show Ever)

Diesel was such a good boy at this show! He really exceeded my expectations behavior wise as he was so calm and level headed. Undersaddle wise, not so much! I think the theme of this show is “can’t stop, won’t stop, and won’t turn left”. 😂 We did have to cut him some slack though since his behavior was phenomenal! If you want to read more about his first show, you can find it here.

 

February: Equifest Schooling Show

Diesel was NOT on his best behavior for me at this show. It was the first time he had to stand tied to the trailer for any length of time, and boy, he let us know that he was not a fan! He sure does look innocent in those pictures though! If you want to read a detailed recap of this show, you can find it here.

 

March: HJ Fox Show

Now, this was a fantastic show! Despite the horrible rainy weather on the first day, Diesel kept it all together and put in 110% effort for my trainer – resulting in his first ever champion ribbon. You can read the full show review here.

 

April: HJ Fox Show

This show was the first show where my trainer incorporated some lead changes! If you want to read the full show review, you can find it here.

 

 

June: Serenity Creek (Our First Show Together!)

This was by far my favorite show of the whole season. After month and months of hard work and dedication, we finally made it to the show ring! There were definitely a lot of happy tears shed at this show! If you want to read the full show report, you can find it here.

 

 

July: HJ Fox Show

This was, by far, Diesel’s best show at the horse park out of the entire season. He and I competed in a really competitive and large flat class and came out third, and he gave my trainer some really great rounds resulting in him getting two champions and a reserve! You can find the full show review here.

 

 

August: HJ Fox Show and Serenity Creek (Our First Time Competing Over Fences At A Show!)

Diesel won his first reserve champion neck ribbon at this HJ Fox show by coming in second in the hunter under saddle challenge class.

For some reason, I don’t have a show review posted about our first over fences show together. However, I will tell you that it was amazing! We went to the show just planning on trotting our courses, but he was so well behaved that we ended up cantering and brought home a reserve champion for our division! What made it so sweet was that my parents were there to see it in person!

 

October: HJ Fox Finale Show

Diesel did pretty well at this show, but it definitely was not his best! He spent the first half of the weekend as a fiery dragon but eventually calmed down enough to put in some really good courses on Sunday. At the time, we thought he might have just been a little grouchy because of the freezing cold weather and intermittent rain, but it turns out that he just really needed a chiropractic adjustment. Once he had his adjustment, he was back to his stretchy, happy self.

Again, I’m not quite sure why I didn’t write a show review for this one either. Although, if I had to guess, it was because I didn’t have enough photos to make it worthwhile. 😕 I am for sure going to get some better videos and photos next season!

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Post Season HJ Fox Banquet

Diesel ended up bringing home two awards from his first show season: overall champion of the baby green hunters and overall reserve champion of the schooling hunters! To say I am proud of him is a gross understatement.  All of the credit goes to my trainer. Really, she’s awesome! None of this would have been possible without her!

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I have to admit – I am a little sad that his first show season is already over! It was truly amazing to see the progress that this horse has made over the course of a year – both behaviorally and performance wise. He has become a completely different horse!

A huge thank you to my trainer, friends, and parents for helping make my dreams for this horse come true!!

Adventures Of Diesel

Jump. Halt. Repeat.

The weather here in Georgia has been absolutely ridiculous the past couple of weeks! Every time I try to schedule a lesson, the sky opens up and our arena becomes an unrideable mess. Unfortunately, that trend is expected to continue this week with rain forecasted to last all week long. Sigh. It looks like I won’t be riding anytime soon.

I did, however, manage to sneak in a lesson while we had one rare sunny day and let me tell you guys, I had one of those holy grail lessons where everything just clicked! *insert happy dance here*

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In the few lessons that I have had recently, we have really been working on creating and maintaining a soft, adjustable horse on course in addition to developing my feel for the type of ride Diesel needs. He requires a completely different ride than what I have ever been used to, so the learning curve has been a steep one. This is especially true when it comes to his jumping style and technique on course. His big, open stride has caused me to have to readjust my eye from the small, choppy strides I have been used to for so long, which has resulted in some trial and error distance wise. One thing I have noticed that I need to work on is my ability to commit to a distance and support him all the way to the base. I tend to throw my reins at him and have a Jesus take the wheel moment when I see a really bad distance or none at all rather than pick my hands up, sit up, and ride. It may not be a huge deal right now since the fences are so tiny, but once the fences become higher, I need to be able to give him the guidance and direction he needs.

I guess this all comes down to confidence for me rather than lack of knowledge. I mean, I KNOW that I need to land off of a jump, sit up, keep my contact, keep my leg on, and regain rhythm before the next jump in order to get the distance I need. My brain just decides to freeze up on me instead! I think I just need to remind my myself that asking Diesel to listen to me is not going to result in a baby horse tantrum like it used to. Diesel now understands what I’m asking him to do and wants me to take charge and give him directions. I just need to remember that!

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“Mom, crossrails suck. Higher please!”

In order to work on that, we kept the jumps at crossrails and spent the majority of the lesson working on jumping into the lines with an established, quiet canter, sitting back and waiting for the add stride, and halting at the end to get him soft and responsive – paying special attention to our rhythm and straightness. While halting after each line isn’t quite as fun as doing the whole course uninterrupted, it has been so, so, so useful for teaching Diesel to stay soft through the line and listen to my aids rather than just dragging me down the line and carrying me through the turn – especially when I need him to shorten his stride for the add.

The magic happened when we jumped into the inside line a little enthusiastically. Instead of panicking when I couldn’t see a distance, I just sat up, closed my leg, kept cmy contact, and fully committed to making the add stride happen no matter what. No collapsing my chest and dropping my reins at the base of the jump in fear of being unseated and no Jesus take the wheel maneuvers. And guess what? It totally worked out! After that, something just clicked inside my brain and I magically remembered how to ride for the distance I needed instead of what I saw. I totally had an “I’m the captain now” moment. 😂

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Since we were doing so well over the crossrails, we finished up the lesson by moving the jumps up to verticals and doing the exact same thing: jumping into the lines with an established, quiet canter, sitting back and waiting for the add stride, and halting at the end. He definitely was a little more eager to get down the lines when he saw that the jumps were a little bigger, but we managed to hold it together and end on a high note. Overall, I was really pleased with how the whole lesson went. We had some really great moments and he behaved so well!

 

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So tell me, how have your rides been lately? Have you had any light bulb moments? Let me know down in the comments!

 

 

Adventures Of Diesel

Stop The Leaning | Lesson Update

This whole week turned out to be a cold but rain-free week here in Georgia. We took full advantage of the dry weather and had an absolute blast by fitting in three lessons this week! Yes, you read that right! We had THREE lessons this week!

Although I wasn’t quite jumping for joy at the thought of lessoning in the cold, I would definitely take cold over raining and day of the week! All of this rainy weather has had me down in the dumps and out of the saddle, which has definitely set us back a little bit in the whole scheme of things. Thinking on the goal I set for myself in my New Years post, I decided to try and get back in the game the best way I know how – taking lessons!

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Diesel says BRRR!

All three of our lessons this week had the same goal in mind: learn to be patient to the fences. That sounds like a really simple fix. I mean, I just need to sit back and wait, right? Well, yeah, but that’s super hard to do in practice – at least it is for me.

I have the tendency to collapse my chest and lean forward on the approach to fences, which then influences Dies to fall onto his forehand, get strung out, and causes us to turn a perfect distance into a disaster. He is so sensitive to my body cues that it it becomes like a domino effect of sorts. The more I lean forward, the more he falls onto his forehand, and the faster we get. That definitely isn’t a new concept to me, but for some reason, my body just doesn’t want to accept this as truth and just will not cooperate.

We started on the journey to eradicating this bad habit by first focusing on improving the quality of our canter because, like my trainer always says, jumping is just flatwork with obstacles.

One thing we did that I felt had a really seemed to help me most was playing around with how my position influences Dies’s canter by practicing shifting my weight to turn (rather than using just my leg and hand aids) on a figure eight. It sounds relatively easy, but let me tell you, it was a definite wake up call for me. It got my brain really working and actually made me start using my seat a little more rather than just becoming so dependent on my leg and hand aids. And guess what? It actually did help us to be more precise with our turns on course.

 

I do feel that we made some good progress concerning our canter! Is it perfect? Heck no it isn’t, but it definitely felt more in line with the type of canter we need over fences. He felt so light and adjustable rather than strung out and unorganised like we can be sometimes. It turns out that my trainer wasn’t kidding. Sitting up, adding more supporting leg, and bending my elbows while raising my hands slightly was the key all along. Who knew? 😅

 

While the leaning is not 100% better, it did improve a bit when we took a step back to work on that canter. I will say that it felt like I was sitting back a lot more than what it actually looks like in the videos. 😅 Sigh, at least it is a step in the right direction!

 

 

Reviews

Noelle Floyd Subscription Box | September & December Boxes

By now, I am sure many of you have heard of the Noelle Floyd subscription box designed to pamper equestrians. A few awesome equestrian bloggers reviewed the first box that was released in September (The Hunky Hanoverian , Horse Glam and The Hunt to name a few), and after reading their reviews, I just had to try the box out for myself.

The price is $60 per box, but NF claims that each box contains products with total retail of $100+. That sounds pretty great, right?

When I purchased my subscription, I ended up receiving both the September and December boxes, so I decided to review both in one post. I will start off with the September box and then move into the December box. Once I have reviewed the contents of both, I will make the final decision on whether I think it is worth the money to buy a subscription or not. Let’s get started! 🙂

The September Box

1. Dreamers and Schemers Socks (Retail Value: $17.95)

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This was hands down my favorite item in the whole box! D&S socks are the bomb.com, and this pair is no exception. I love that the polka dots are actually knitted into the socks rather than just a print, and the saying “stay grounded” that is on the bottom is just plain cute. Overall, I would give these a 10/10.

 

2. Scentuals De-Stress & Balance Aromatherapy Roll-On Oil (Retail Value: $12.23 each)

 

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Ok, so I am not normally on the essential oils train but I actually love these rollerballs. I use them almost daily, and I am pretty convinced that the De-Stress rollerball is the reason I have been sleeping so well. I use it every night before bed and let me tell you, I have been sleeping so well! Overall, I would give these a 9/10.

3. Scentuals Grapefruit and Turmeric Hand Repair Cream (Retail Value: $7.63)

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Sadly, I was not a fan of this product. Don’t get me wrong, I love some good lotion, but I just can’t get past the strong turmeric smell of this one. It also doesn’t help that it is a bit greasy. Its only saving grace is that it is quite moisturizing and helped my chapped hands. It isn’t terrible, but it just isn’t something that I will be reaching for again. Overall, I would give it a 4/10.

4. Equestrian Wellness Essential Helmet Spray (Retail value: $14)

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I actually really liked this spray. The scent is not too overpowering and it does a really good job of keeping my helmet liner fresh in between washings. I just spritz a little on the liner before putting my helmet back in my ringside bag and it’s good to go for the next ride. There’s not much else to say about it other than that. 😬 Overall, I would give it an 8/10.

5. Ruespari Thin Surcingle Belt (Retail Value: $75)

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Some of you all are going to hate me, but I actually didn’t like the belt. 🙈 After reading other reviews, I was a bit worried that mine might not fit (I’m no stick you know) but lo and behold, it did. I will disclose that it was a bit snugger than I would like though. My biggest complaint: I just plain don’t like how thin it is. All of my favorite belts (Ellany and Tailored Sportsman) are all 2″ to fit the belt loops on my Tailored Sportsman breeches. I’m not quite sure the exact width, but I know for a fact it isn’t 2″. It also doesn’t help that the belt is not as stretchy as I would like for a surcingle belt. I keep asking myself this question: Why in the heck is this belt priced at $75? I can go out and buy one of these types of belts for $40 right now! I guess you’re just paying for the name at this point. Overall, I would give this belt a 3/10.

6. $50 Credit To The NF. Shop

Even though I haven’t used mine yet, this actually really made the box for me. Who doesn’t love a good gift card? Not me!

The total value of the box ended up being $189.04 with the credit included – 3x the initial price of the box ($60). 

The December Box

1. Savvy Muscle Cream (Retail Value: $28)

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Heh, I actually ended up using this straight out of the box as the old man (Diablo) decided that I was getting a little too comfortable and proceeded to reintroduce me to the ground today. I guess that’s what I get for thinking I could ride around on a loose rein on a windy day. 🤷‍♀️ Anyway, to get to the point, I like this product. The scent is not offensive (it has a minty type smell) and feels nice and cooling on the skin. The cream is also not super thick or greasy, so the application is not messy or unpleasant. I actually do think this helped a bit with my soreness a bit, but it definitely can’t do the wonderous things Advil can do. I also just have to mention that I like the wording on the can: for rusty humans. It’s fitting, right? Overall, I give this product an 8/10.

2. Equestrian Wellness Campfire Story Candle (Retail Value: $32)

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I was actually super excited to open the box and find a candle inside. If you have read some of my other blog posts, you know that I am addicted to Grey Horse Candle Co. Those candles are the bomb! This candle, however, was a miss for me in the scent department. I hate the smoky scent of it, which was disappointing. I really wanted to like it. On the plus side, the candle itself is actually really well made and the label was very well thought out design wise. Overall, I give this product a 1/10.

3. Bibimbap Lip Treatment (Retail: $26 $12)

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I must be missing something here. Is this not just lip balm? The words lip treatment makes it sound really fancy, but I am pretty sure this is just lip balm. Either way, I really like it. The scent is really nice (lemongrass is one of my favorite scents), it feels smooth and soothing on the lips, and it does moisturize them really well. It’s really good lip balm but it’s totally not worth the orginal $26 price tag. Overall, I would give it a 9/10.

4. Platinum Bar EQ (Retail Value: $3.10 per bar)

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I was kind of confused when I saw this one. My first thought was: they sent me a granola bar? Well, boy, was I wrong about that one. This is, in fact, a granola bar for horses. Ok, well, it isn’t actually a granola bar, but that is what it looks like to me. It is really a horse “treat” made by the makers of Platinum horse supplements. If I’m reading the description right, it says that each of these bars is equivalent to feeding one serving of their Platinum Performance Equine Wellness supplement. The real question here is: why would I want to feed my horse an expensive “treat” bar twice a day when I can just dump a scoop of the supplement in their feed? I don’t know. It just seems kind of pointless to me. Did I forget to mention that a box of 22 of these puppies (11 days worth) is $66? I can get a 10 lb tub of this stuff (34 days worth) for $60. Yeah, no thanks. Overall, I give this a 1/10 only because Diesel seemed to like it. I just don’t see the point.

5. $70 Off A One Year Subscription of NF. Insider

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I’m not quite sure that I will ever use this since even with the discount code, their subscription still costs $80, but the sentiment was nice! If any of you have a NF. Insider subscription, please let me know if it is worth the money or not. I am curious to know!

The total value of this box ended up being $145.10 with the coupon for NF. Insider included – a little over 2x the value of the initial $60 you spent on the box. 


My overall verdict on the NF subscription boxes: If you like wellness and beauty items, this box might peak your interest. If you like horse-related items, then you might want to try Cavali Club instead.

I thought the boxes themselves were ok overall. However, I did feel that the first one was better than the second – especially when it came to the added coupon/credit.

Although not everything was a win for me, I can’t completely blame the misses on NF as everything comes down to personal preference. That’s just kind of the risk you take whenever you order these types of subscription boxes. That being said, I honestly like these type of boxes because you can try some really neat stuff that you normally might never pick up on its own, which I did with these boxes.

I have two critiques for NF. The first would be that I wish the second box would have included another item rather than the coupon code for NF. Insider. That $70 could have been used to buy another big ticket item or two smaller items that could have really put the box over the top. As it stands, the box was not up to standards for me. The second is that I wish they would have included a little note saying which rider chose what item and why in the box itself. I know that they gave you the link to the webpage that said all of that, but I think that having it right there in the box would have added a special touch to it that many people would have appreciated. I know I would have. Just providing a link seems a little lazy to me, but that’s just my opinion.

The final question remains: Will I continue my subscription? For now, yes I will. I am extremely curious to see how NF improves from here. I am crossing my fingers that the next box will knock it out of the park for me and not another wild miss! Let’s just say that if the next box was as big of a miss as the December box was for me, then I will not continue to subscribe.


 

What about you guys? Would you subscribe? Let me know down in the comments!