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Never Stop Riding

What’s Your Experience?

The first thing a potential employer will ask in an interview whether it be on the phone, in an email or in person, “tell me about yourself,” aka what’s your experience? As seniors in our winter quarter we are beginning to search for the next step after graduation in June. 

The struggle of all Public Relations majors is finding a job their qualified for.

For a lot of us it will seem like having a bachelor’s degree and experience from a part- time job throughout college just isn’t enough. A friend of mine recently graduated and is extremely frustrated because “entry-level” jobs are requiring 2 years experience. We’ve all done internships to graduate, but not 2 year long internships! How are we suppose to gain experience if nobody will give us a chance?

Internships are a weird thing and for Communications students they are almost dreaded because internships are unpaid in our industry. I didn’t know there was such thing as a paid internship until my accounting major roommate, Karli, got one paying $22 an hour and goes to training in Disney Land! Can you say lucky?

Public Relations

Throughout the last 4 years I’ve watched people graduate and always wonder what they’ll do post- graduation. The first “friend” I had graduate went on to stay another two years and complete Grad School. At first this seemed like the “easy” way out because it bought you more time till the real world. Another recent grad is filling her days housesitting in the greater Seattle area while she searches to lockdown her first “big kid” job.

The dreaded never-ending question of seniors is, “what’s your plan after graduation?” It’s interesting to find a lot of no experience required jobs have admin titles. No offense to all the admins out there but I’ve spent the last 7 years of my professional life as one and I want to do something else!

Soon to be graduates out there, you aren’t alone in the frustration of searching for a job you’ve spent 4 years preparing for to only find out you aren’t qualified.

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EHV-1: Wash Your Hooves

Over 10 years ago I grew up riding and boarding at a barn with nearly 80 horses. A barn that years prior had experienced a strangles outbreak.

“Strangles is an infectious, contagious disease of Equidae characterized by abscessation of the lymphoid tissue of the upper respiratory tract.”

Because of this outbreak they were extremely paranoid and all those years later still talked about it like it was yesterday. When I first saw the news of the EHV-1 last month I almost couldn’t believe it, but with how easy it is for barns to spread literally anything, I wasn’t surprised. The entire horse community from Bellingham to Olympia went on quarantine and it worked because the virus didn’t spread outside of the initial infected barn.

The outbreak of a virus like EHV-1 is a crisis and barn owner/ managers nightmare.

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“There are several equine herpesvirus types, some of which can cause more damage than others. The type that has dominated headlines recently, EHV-1, can cause respiratory illness, abortion in pregnant mares, congenital infection (foals are born with it, displaying weakness), and sometimes the more severe EHM. It’s also more common than many people might think; most horses are latent carriers (not showing signs of active disease) that were infected early in life.”

In the past 15 years the numbers of cases and outbreaks of EHV-1 have continue to rise, but to my knowledge (or at least since Facebook is everyone’s diary) this is the first major outbreak in Western Washington. Thankfully, my barrel horse was safe at her barn here in Ellensburg. Sadly, these outbreaks cannot be prevented. Years ago at a huge cutting show in Utah an outbreak took place and swept through the hundreds of horses from many different states quickly.

Each barn took immediate preventative action including:

  • Quarantine of the Animals
    • No haul-ins
    • No haul- outs
    • No new horses
  • Barrel Races, Horse Shows, Clinics, etc. were cancelled

The immediate quarantine was effective and thankfully the virus didn’t spread any further than the initial barn. Our hearts go out to those animals and their families affected. 7 horses affected by the virus were lost and many will have to undergo rehabilitation.

http://www.tacomaequine.com/single-post/2017/12/27/EHV1KingCounty

http://www.thehorse.com/articles/27373/neurologic-ehv-1-the-top-five-things-you-need-to-know

http://www.thehorse.com/articles/34848/ehv-1-what-are-we-learning

The Best of the Best

Just a short month ago the Top 15 Barrel Racers were running down the alley of the T&M, living the dream. It’s easy to get wrapped up in the glitz and the glam of Vegas, but the other 355 days of the year are nothing like the life of an NFR Celebrity.

The thing about all these celebs is they have normal habits just like the rest of us weekend barrel racers.

Hailey Kinsel, a fan favorite, had other priorities this year besides making the NFR. Her first priority was to graduate Texas A&M University and next most important was to focus on college rodeos and make a third shot at College National Rodeo Finals. Hailey and I have the same priority, graduating college!

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I went into 2017 without hardly any expectations at all, just like Taci Bettis. Bettis says that the key to her success was having no expectations at all. By mid- August she had won $90,000 and was well on her way to the bright- lights of Vegas in December.

Kathy Grimes lives an ordinary life in Medical Lake, WA outside of Spokane. When she isn’t traveling across the countryside chasing cans she is tucked away in her barn breeding some of the best horses in the country. Dr. Grimes talks about the challenges of keeping both horses sound on the road all year long, but if anyone can do it it’s her!

Nellie Miller and Sister took the NFR by the reins, literally, last month. I admire the Northwest families who raise top quality Quarter Horses and hope someday to build a herd as admirable as some of theirs. Nellie’s mount this past year, Sister, is as homegrown as they come. Sister even won by hometown rodeo, Ellensburg! Nellie said, “Sister doesn’t require a lot of runs, so we’ve been taking it easy, keeping her in shape and running her a handful of times.” Sister sounds like the dream to have as a travel partner.

Each of these best of the best competitors all share characteristics or similarities to the rest of us normal barrel racers. Years ago when Michele McLeod qualified for her first NFR she spoke about how Slick (Slick By Design) changed her families lives. Prior to Slick and qualifying for the NFR, Katelyn (middle McLeod sister) used to take a borrowed half ton pickup and two horse bumper pull trailer to college rodeos. The McLeod sisters have become somewhat “famous” thanks to Slick and all their talent as barrel racers, but once upon a time they were ordinary just like us.

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The best of the best still live ordinary daily lives just like the rest of us. They have to lope horses no matter how tired they might be and if you want to watch all of this in action with up to date play by plays, follow Lindsey McLeod on Snapchat!

 

https://www.barrelhorsenews.com/articles/event-coverage/nfr-coverage/160-nfr-coverage-2016/4743-nellie-miller-wins-2017-wpra-world-champion-barrel-racer-title-nfr-aggregate-championship

 

Birchbox – The Holiday Season

At the end of finals week I was more than looking forward to my Birchbox coming in the mail! I was in love before I even opened the box, it was just so dang cute. I’m not going to lie, I’m writing this blog in my sweats with my day 3 hair in a braid and about to put a facemask on.

This month’s birchbox included three bonus items! Including an eyelash curler that I will never use because I’ve been blessed with long & curly eyelashes. However, my Mom will definitely snatch this up. My favorite couple of items I always look forward to coming in the box is a face mask and moisturizer, because those are my go- to items. Btw, this month’s Clark’s Botanicals, deep moisture mask, is awesome! I can’t wait to follow it up after a cleanse with the Air Repair, completion boosting moisturizer, they sent with it.

The thing I loved about the bonus items in this month’s box was it included a set of shampoo, conditioner, and hair serum by Davines. I have been using the shampoo and so far I love it, when I get my hair foiled over the weekend I’m going to talk to my stylist about using it full time.

If you are lost in what to get the lady in your life this Christmas, check out a Birchbox gift subscription offered in 3, 6, and 12- month certificates.

My Favorites This Month

As much as I love the deep moisture mask I probably won’t purchase it after I run out of the product because the full size of the product is $72 and I spend money on other things like horse supplements & hay, entry fees, you know normal barrel racer stuff.

Out of all the boxes I’ve received over the last few months this one has to be by far my favorite!

XOXO Until Next Time

Black Friday (or Thursday) 2017

The first thing my Aunt said to me on Thanksgiving morning when my family and I arrived at my Grandma’s house was, “Are you going shopping tonight?” Since I was 15 and working for my own money, I have loved Black Friday back when it actually took place on Friday.

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My Dad is a Black Friday Champion, he will stand in the long lines of Target, Walmart, Coastal, etc. while I run around like a mad man and grab everything I can think of. This past Friday he met my brother, boyfriend, and I in the hotel hallway at 4 a.m. to drive half an hour to Oregon City for not only discounts but tax free shopping.

Black Friday Finds

  • $20 Ariat Hoodie at Coastal Farm & Feed
  • 20% off  Bogs at Coastal Farm & Feed
  • $4 Target Shirts
  • $9 Bed Head Shampoo at Ulta – $21 Off!
  • $10 Tarte Maneater Mascara – 50% off
  • $15 Philosophy Face Wash – $27 off
  • 50% off Philosophy Holiday Glow Set
  • BOGO Batiste Dry Shampoo
  • Philosophy Body Wash – $6 off
  • Socks at Fred Meyer – 50% off

Hobby Lobby had nearly the entire store 50% off where I found a couple of cute signs for Christmas Gifts and bought Christmas decorations to decorate the tree with next weekend! I was able to buy $100 worth of stuff for $47!

Despite having an incredibly full basket at Ulta on Thursday evening, I walked out of the store earning close to 100 rewards points and saving $45 dollars! Ulta is always on my list of where I need to shop on Black Friday because I buy items like my shampoo (32 oz bottle) on that night once a year and my mascara I purchase that night last me at least 4 months. The bottle of Philosophy Face Wash (16 oz) will last me until Black Friday next year too!

Black Friday Stops

Today on Cyber Monday, my email is flooded with deals from all the places I have shopped over the years. I would much rather shop on Black Friday and get deals on Christmas gifts so I can buy my loved ones more on their list!

Happy Shopping XOXO

Beauty & Life Routines

On a day like today and most other days you’d never know I love beauty products or search Pinterest while drinking my morning coffee for outfit, makeup, or hair inspiration. I have a giant closet full of clothes for every season and enough makeup for multiple girls. Except, if I’m not giving a presentation at CWU or at work most of the time you can catch me in jeans or yoga pants, nikes, and a sweatshirt. I’ll admit most of the time I don’t utilize my closet or makeup and it’s a good day if my hair is down.

This week I received my third Birchbox and it couldn’t have come at a better time! It came with a new fragrance, purple shampoo, mascara, makeup remover, and some eye cream. I had been feeling like my hair needed a pick me up even though I already use purple shampoo when I was my hair.

November Birchbox

Although I don’t always wear makeup or do my hair doesn’t mean I don’t have a good beauty regime. I wash my face twice a day, use a face moisturizer and eye cream daily. The older I get the more I try to keep a routine about multiple aspects in my life.

Routines 

  • Make my bed daily
  • Wash & Moisturize Face
  • Read 1 Blog that I follow
  • Spend 10 minutes doing something I enjoy
  • Drink Water!

If I have learned anything while being a barrel racer in college it’s that you don’t need expensive products to have good looking skin, you just need a routine! Because let’s face it I’m not going to spend a crazy amount on myself when I have entry fees and a horse to pay for!

XOXO Until Next Time

It’s Spendy but That’s Okay!

I saw a post traveling around Facebook, “What is expensive but it’s worth it to you?” I commented on one of my friend’s post with a few of my top items I thought of off the top of my head; Lululemons, Purses & Wallets, Fancy Shampoo & Conditioner.

There isn’t a day I don’t love my Lululemons, both my crops and jackets. If you know me at all you know I love a good quality purse and wallet. A love my boyfriend wishes I didn’t have! Two years ago I invested in a Kate Spade wallet and not a day goes by that I don’t love it. It has held up so good! One thing I don’t hesitate to spend money on, besides my horse, is good quality hair products. I will recommend Surface Shampoo & Conditioner to every single person who asks! I have spent a long time getting my hair the perfect shade of blonde and putting a little money into the products I use on it is worth it to me.

This post got me thinking and I really justify spending a little bit more money on good quality items but I also buy them less often because they are good quality! Unless your Tana and can rip through the best quality splint boots in only a handful of runs.

What I spend money on and why:

  • Hair Protectant Spray – I use Pureology 21 and it has saved my hair SO much! It’s $28 for the full size bottle and it lasts me 9-10 months.
  • Good Quality Jeans – I ride horses so enough said?
  • Healthy / Fresh Food – I love good quality food because not only is it good for your body but it fills you up too. Although to save money I shop sales, buy produce in season, and shop at places like Trader Joes and Costco. I will say, Trader Joes makes it so much easier!
  • Skin Care – Because I want to look 22 forever!
  • Makeup – This kinda goes along with wanting to look 22 forever, I am a firm believer that good quality makeup is better for your skin and won’t harm your skin the way cheap quality makeup does!

I have included below links to some of my “justified” products incase you’re interested!

Colour Fanatic 21 Spray

Pureology Skin Care

Surface Hair Products

XOXO Until Next Time

Dating a Barrel Racer

Dating a barrel racer is not for the weak. It will either make you a better person or make you want to cry, there’s no inbetween. 

Do you dream of your alarm going off at 4:30 a.m. on a Saturday morning after you’ve spent your Friday night moving a ton of hay? When you were a little kid did you dream of watching endless barrel runs the entire weekend? If you said yes to any of these, date a barrel racer! 

The easiest part of dating a barrel racer is probably going to the barrel races! It’s the stall cleaning, bag carrying, hay hauling, poop scooping, pen building that is all the fun! You’ll have to haul hay after work or on the weekends because whether the horses are making money or not they have to eat. At the barrel races you’ll begin to sport a cute leather tote bag with your girlfriend’s name on it full of all the “stuff” she or her horse needs. When the shortest part of the entire weekend is over the actual race, you’ll go home and clean her stall and do the other misc. chores that come with the horses. 

When dating a barrel racer you skip your weekend activities and choose to go to the barrel race so you don’t get called a jerk. You take her to lunch or dinner probably consisting of mexican food because she is running on very little sleep, no foods, and lots of caffeine. In the mornings you make sure she gets her special coffee order because if you know anything at all it is to not argue with a barrel racer. 

At the end of the day if you were truly meant to date a barrel racer then you won’t mind being told you’re not capable of driving her rig or holding her horse. But you will love her and carry her tote bag around even if it looks like a man purse. You will tell her good job even if she had the worst run in the world. 

Until Next Time XOXO 

 

Routine, Insights & Favorite Products

If raising a colt teaches you anything at all it’s that they like routine, consistency, and patterns. Linda drilled into my head, “consistency, consistency, consistency,” so that’s what I did and then some. Well creating a routine has almost backfired on me, now Tana likes to begin eating at least 2 hours prior to warming up, knows on the road she gets grain twice a day, etc. 

When we arrive at the race the night before I make sure and wake up 2 hours before time-only’s begin to feed Tana her morning hay. This way she has plenty of time to eat before and then after time-only’s I unsaddle, put all her BOT wear on, feed her the rest of her hay, and her grain mixture and let her rest till the race. 

My favorite BOT Products

Best Horse Gear

  • Mesh Sheet – At night I will put this on her with a rain sheet or stable blanket on top
  • Quick Wraps
  • Hock Wraps

I make sure and begin saddling up about an hour before I think I’m going to make my run, I wander down to the warm-up and long trot two laps, make two circles each direction and then walk. About 3 rakes before my number I find my Mom and boot Tana up and then in another rake I cinch up and get on. I seriously could not barrel race without my Mom. 

After my run, I hand walk to cool her down, water her, and if I notice she’s sore at all or seems to have heat I make sure and put lineament where needed. Lately, we’ve been going to multiple day races so when were done running I feed her more hay and let her relax in the pen. 

Tana’s Feed Routine on the Road 

  • AM- Before Time Only’s: 1 flake of grass hay, 1/2 flake of alfalfa, 
  • AM- Prior to Run: 1 flake of grass hay, 1/2 lb of Haystack Special Blend, 1 scoop of Equerry’s Glucosamine, 1 scoop of LMF 911, a pinch of salt 
  • PM- Evening Feed: 1 flake of grass hay, 1 flake of alfalfa, 1/2 of Hay Stack Special Blend, 1 scoop of Equerry’s, a pinch of salt 

(The grass hay is just estimates, even at home she is pretty much on free choice)

All the products that keep Tana happy & healthy:

I am constantly learning every single day, and being told to try new things, changing up what I always thought was right and so much more! If I didn’t have a trainer well, I’d be even more of a hot mess than I already am. I definitely don’t know it all and I love to learn new things this is just what works for me so far! 

XOXO Until Next Time

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