CR RanchWear Blog
Christmas is officially in the air! Struggling to find the perfect gift for that special someone? What about the hard-to-buy-for trainer? How about your best hauling partner? It doesn’t matter if they slide, stop, cut, turn a barrel or rope a steer - we have a line up of great gifts they’ll love under their tree!
CR RanchWear Show Shirts
Obviously we have to kick off our Christmas Gift Guide by highlighting some great western shirts that we have available at CR RanchWear right now. What makes CR stand out? First off, we use the best 100% cotton on earth, these cottons are chosen for their feel, as well as their durability and colour retention. Second, these shirts were made for you to ride in. We have a proprietary cut that is longer in the sleeve and tail so our shirts look great while riding horses. We could go on, and on, but we don’t want to totally bore you! We do have to mention though that CR Shirts are handmade in Dallas, TX by real people making a fair wage - how awesome is that.
Serious about Solids
Go with a jewel tone for the traditionalist in your life that likes to shine at the same time.
This teal blue is the perfect jewel tone, especially when paired with a beautiful bay or stunning roan. This shirt is eye-catching and classy and the pebble detailing sets it apart.
Get the CR Tradition Teal Blue Pebble HERE
Red screams Christmas. Cheetah? Well Cheetah screams I’m here to mark a 75, and that means I’m here to have a good time! We love the pop of cheetah on this jewel tone shirt for the holidays, and if red isn’t your loved one’s colour - we have purple too!
Get the CR Tradition Bright Red Cotton Sateen with Cheetah HERE
Crazy for Patterns
We found the perfect shirts for the traditionalist with a little edge. Now, we have the shirts for the competitor in your life that likes to stand out in a crowd!
Geometric patterns are all the craze right now. The Field of Blues shirt mixes the perfect combination of pattern with great eye-popping blue tones.
Get the CR Tradition Field of Blues Italian Cotton HERE
This gorgeous shirt has all the right colour combos in all the right places. The deep purple with the contrasting blue is the icing on the cake.
Get the CR Tradition Purple Metallic Medallion HERE
Who doesn’t love a Canadian Tuxedo?! (Okay, I’m biased, I am a Canadian) BUT, I’m just saying, this classic denim look with a pair of dark wash Kimes Ranch Jeans… that’s a look that you can’t go wrong with!
Get the CR Western Pro Denim Premium Cotton HERE
A Little Something for Everybody
Okay, we get it, purchasing a show shirt for someone can be a little scary sometimes… What if it doesn’t end up as their lucky shirt?! We feel like any shirt gifted with love is “lucky” but fear not - we have some other options for the lucky loved one’s in your life!
These saddle blankets are drop dead gorgeous. No one is going to turn down a Yucca Flats Saddle Blanket under the tree - we promise you!
Get the G162 Yucca Flats Saddle Blanket HERE
How about for the hard working crew behind-the-scenes that maybe doesn’t show? CR Performance Wear is the perfect option for those people in your life that you can’t live without! From high performing jackets, to vests, hoodies and long sleeves, we got you!
Get the Women’s CR All-Weather Jacket in Teal HERE
Silk scarves are awesome stocking stuffers, or for the hard-to-shop for super puncher in your life. Trust us on this one.
Get the CR Ride Em Cowboy Black Silk Scarf HERE
We hope you enjoyed our little Christmas gift guide. We hope even more you were able to get some great ideas, or find the perfect gift, for those great people in your life! If you want to shop CR RanchWear in person you can always stop by one at our booths set up at some of the great year-end events happening in December!
Visit us at the NCHA Futurity in Fort Worth, Texas, November 15-December 9
NRHA Futurity in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, November 22-December 1
National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas, Nevada, December 6-December 15
I used to be the Queen of Nerves. Black out before and during my runs? Been there. So nervous I couldn’t hear anything? Done that. Couldn’t remember my runs afterwards? Yep, still happens. But, the worst part of being a Nervous Nelly or Clammed Up Clint? (Yes, I just came up with that masculine version, and I am here for it! Using that one in the future)Well, the worst part is that you aren’t able to truly enjoy your time in the show pen because you are too busy being nervous about everything going on. So here’s my top five tips for overcoming nervousness, from someone that IS NOT a sports psychologist, or an expert by any means. However, I am someone who has had her fair share of nervous meltdowns before, during, and after a run.
1. Find Your Routine
Surprisingly, I’m not really a “routine” type of person, but when it comes to getting prepared to show, I most certainly am. I like to have my groom bag, bridle and chaps all in the show pen before I bring my horse in. I like to have a little extra time to groom and saddle my horse. That serves two purposes, if anything goes awry, I have time to deal with it. It also leaves me a little time to be calm, and quiet, and in my own personal space before heading into the arena. I have my certain little loping routine I like to do. I like to chat with my trainer ahead of time so I know when is a good time to work the flag, or cows. I almost always boot up and put my chaps on at the cattle change, and I like my horse to have a decent sweat on him when I do this. All these little things are just that, little, but i’ve found it so helpful in the scheme of things.
The great thing about cutting, and likely most other western performance sports, is the routine is generally the same from show to show, arena to arena. So, if you end up in an unfamiliar place and your nerves are wreaking havoc on your mind, fall back to your routine. Take a deep breath and go through the same paces you always do. It’ll make you feel better. Promise.
2. Don’t Stress The Small Stuff
So there’s this very famous term in horse-show-land, and it’s called, “hurry up, and wait.” If you’ve shown a horse, you’ve heard it. It’s the most truest saying in all the land because it sums up that nervous feeling of running late for your class, rushing to get ready and then showing up in the arena and realizing you have tons of time and you are actually there way too early.
I’m not saying don’t be ultra prepared, as I touched on in point one, routine and preparation takes a lot of my nerves away. But, there are some things you can’t control. Oh shoot, they are dragging the arena? Don’t let it bug you. Find a corner and walk some small circles, visualize your run and practice your breathing. You are first up, and you hate drawing first, don’t dwell on it. The more you dwell, the more you panic, the more your nerves will go crazy.
3. Speak Positively To Yourself
It’s so easy to say, “I don’t want to lose a cow”, or “I need to cut better today.” Don’t let yourself fall into the trap of going back to a negative mindset. I always try to say to myself, “I am going to be accurate and precise,” or, “I am going to ride to the right position.” When it comes to cutting, I say things like, “calm and confident,” and “drive your cow up into the middle of the pen.” If i’m feeling super weak-minded and can feel myself saying really harsh things to myself, like I suck, I don’t deserve to be here, my previous successes didn’t count… and hey, we’ve all had those days when we are just down right mean to ourselves… I try my hardest to counter those thoughts with how proud I am to show. How happy it makes me to show. How grateful I am to have a sound and happy horse underneath me and how lucky I am to be given this opportunity.
Which leads me to one of my favourite points to combat nervousness…
Straight A students show up to exams prepared, they’ve done their homework, they’ve studied, they are confident and they are ready. Showing horses is the same. Leading up to a show i’ll watch previous videos, I’ll watch videos on cutting, I’ll practice and i’ll ride my horse. I’ll also visualize how I want my run to feel and how it will look in that pen.
I’ve shown in a lot of new arenas this year, and so sometimes, I won’t be able to picture the pen I’ll be showing in. I find it very helpful to sneak into the arena the night before the show starts. I picture all the riders in the lope pen and the show pen and then I picture myself getting ready. I walk through my little routine, the steps that it takes to get to the show pen. Then I picture my run, I picture my perfect run. I walk through all the things I need to do for a great run, and I walk through how that translates to my horse. I try to really FEEL it all, so that I can go out and ride the way it all felt in my mind.
5. Believe In Your Unicorn, and Believe In Yourself Too!
So, “Believe In Your Unicorn”, is a saying that i’ve used on my own blog for a long time, but it’s so true. It’s easy to go out there and let nerves take over how fun this is suppose to be. We ARE so lucky to show horses, and our horses - no matter barrel horses, cow horses, breed show horses - are amazing, they are definitely unicorns. So, above all, trust your horse out there, and then, believe in yourself too.
When I started out, I had small goals that weren’t affected by score or placing. Things like, “get a cow cut in the middle of the pen” grew into “cut three cows in the middle of the pen.” When I started out often it was, “be confident in the herd”, now my goals have changed to “use my feet to place my horse precisely.” Either way, having your own goals that are independent of anyone else’s are great, because when you achieve them, you can happily cross them out and move onto your next set of goals.
Good luck out there and remember, don’t let the nerves take away from the fun of it!
A big thank you to Callaghan Creative Co. for the images. Check her website out at www.callaghancreativeco.com or her Instagram at www.instagram.com/callaghancreativeco. In these photos i’m showing in a CR RanchWear Italian Cotton Western Shirt and you can shop the available Italian Cotton’s here: https://crranchwear.com/collections/italian-cotton-western-shirts
- Why reining? I picked reining because I LOVE speed combined with finesse. I ended up training when I found someone that would actually pay me to do it. Getting paid to do something you love should be everyone’s goal!
- If you weren’t training horses, what would you be doing? If not reining, I’d be an analyst for ESPN.
Easy Otie Whiz was the great horse that helped Matt Mills secure a gold medal during the World Equestrian Games in Aachen, Germany
- If you could pick only pick one of your great horses from your career, which one would it be? I would probably have to pull Easy Otie Whiz back out. I knew he was good back then but I had no idea how rare individuals like that really are.
- What has been your biggest accomplishment? Keeping a good balance between work and family. That’s not easy to do in the horse business.
- In your mind, what are some of the top qualities in a great show horse?Hands down a great show horse has to be always willing. That quality alone can equal a lot of victories.
- What do you find yourself telling your clients the most? Be confident! Mistakes are ok, we all make them. But be decisive. Horses don’t do the grey area well.
- Who was one of your biggest mentors? Too many people to mention! Honestly I’ve learned a little something from all of my competitors at different times.
8. Is there a quote you live by? Stole this one: “Just go out and try your best, if you don’t... you lose.”
- What’s your favourite horse a competitor is showing? I have so many nice horses in my own barn that I really haven’t paid any attention to what others have!
- What is your favourite show of the season? Our Super Bowl: The NRHA Futurity is my favourite. We spend 2 years preparing young horses for this. It can be so up and down which makes success their So sweet.
- What is one thing you can’t live without on the road? Sunflower seeds
- Any surprising talents or hobbies outside of reining? Not a lot of time for serious hobbies with horses. I kind of dabble in them all. Golf, music, video games, and wine to name a few.
- Do you believe in superstitions? I stay away from the superstition thing because I couldn’t ever remember what I did at the last competition.
- Why is CR RanchWear your favourite? The quality of CR Ranchwear’s shirts are second to none. They also have the best fit!
- What’s your personal favourite shirt? All of my CR shirts are good but my favorite is whatever one my wife tells me to wear next! Lol
CR RanchWear sponsored rider, Morgan Cromer, walks to the herd during the NCHA Futurity
In most western performance horse sports there are two categories of shows:
Weekend shows, where the classes are generally determined by a combination of rider level, rider earnings and/or horse earnings. The winnings tend to be much lower and weekend shows are run year-round.
Then there are aged events, this is where young horses are shown, often three year olds, four year olds and five and six year olds are all represented here. Due to the degree of difficulty, aged events are often seen as very prestigious events. In reining, cow horse and cutting, futurity classes are reserved for horses that are three years old. This changes a little bit here and there, with rider levels and such being thrown in for effect, but we’ll keep it simple and just leave it at that. Futurities tend to begin in late summer and roll through fall, hence the excitement around the season change. Each association, the National Cutting Horse Association, the National Reined Cow Horse Association and the National Reining Horse Association, has a major futurity towards the end of each year, which tend to have the most money, and the biggest accolades to win.
Sarah Dawson and Shiney Outlaw were the Open Hackamore Champions at the 2017 Snaffle Bit Futurity
So why the hype around all of this? Why is it that performance horse people are talking more about futurities than pumpkin spiced lattes? Aged events, and especially futurities, are a pretty big deal. Trainers work day in and day out to prepare horses for these events. Non pro riders hone their skills and try not to cry in front of their trainers year-round to show at these events. Clients put up a lot of money to make sure their futurity prospects are feeling their best and prepared for the big shows. Which, of course, also cost a lot of money to enter.
In most operations performance horses are started as long yearlings or early two year olds, then the training begins. It’s a process. In the cow horse, horses have to succeed in three events - reining, boxing and fence work. No easy task for any horse and rider combination! In reining, horses have to be prepared to stop harder, turn faster and transition through their leads prettier, than the next horse in the pen. In cutting the rider has to relinquish control of the reins, they have to throw their hand down while their horse stylishly and almost effortlessly keeps a cow away from the herd.
You’ll likely see all four of these handsome gentlemen at the NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity this year. Pictured during World’s Greatest this year is Chris Dawson, Clayton Edsall, Shadd Parkinson, and Brad Lund, all members of the CR RanchWear Team!
In all these events, if the horse makes it to the big futurities finals that each association offers up, the crowd is often deafening, the pressure mounting and the prize money daunting. Those nights, under the big lights of the futurity finals, can make or break a horse, a trainer, a rider, an owner.
The excitement that the big futurity finals drum up is nothing short of spectacular. These events are often weeks long, exciting times for performance horse enthusiasts, trainers and owners to come from all corners of North America, and beyond, to take in the best young horses in the world.
Tricia Perner Gilson shows off her CR RanchWear on Millificent during the NHRA Non Pro Futurity
So, how is CR RanchWear involved? Well, first up, we love all our performance horse riders and our company is often represented by amazing riders across the board at aged events throughout the fall. Secondly, we will be set up at the top three big futurities this year, and we can’t wait to see you there and of course, we love to #CUINCR!
We’ve already been busy heading down the road this year, here’s the CR booth at the Idaho Cutting Horse Futurity in late August!
You can visit the CR RanchWear team at…
The National Reined Cow Horse Association Snaffle Bit Futurity and Hackamore
October 7-20 in Fort Worth, Texas.
The National Reining Horse Association Futurity
November 22-Dec 1 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
& The National Cutting Horse Association Futurity
November 14-Dec 9 in Fort Worth, Texas
Western Twist Media (WTM) is the creative outlet of professional writer and influencer, Louisa Murch-White. Murch-White is a published journalist and an avid and enthusiastic member of the performance horse world, competing in cutting horse events. WTM is driven by a passion for the performance horse industry. WTM specializes in assisting brands and companies in the performance horse industry tell their own stories through impactful marketing and branding. Our popular site also features unique and collaborative advertising opportunities. We'd love to help you share your story: WesternTwistMedia@gmail.com
I guess we should start off by introducing who the heck I am. Hi! I’m Louisa, of Western Twist Media , my “Beginner’s Guide to Cutting” has been featured on the CR RanchWear blog before, and I’ve been honoured to be invited back as a regular contributor. So how did I get this gig? Well, uhm… I’m not *exactly* sure… but I’m thinking that a serious addiction to CR RanchWear helped.. I mean, that Italian Cotton though… BUT, i’m also a huge supporter of the western performance horse industry and I compete in cutting myself. I’m not some #BigTimeNonPro, after a long stint as a loper, I finally decided to try my hand at showing myself, so here I am, still just figuring it out in the 2,000 Limit Rider. There’s been lots of ups, and even more downs, but through it all I’ve always enjoyed bringing humour, with a big dash of #RealTalk, to my experiences in the show pen. So, that’s why we’ve found ourselves here! I wanted my first blog to communicate something anyone in the show pen, from lopers, to riders, to owners, could relate too, and through it, I found a much deeper blog post than I originally imagined. So, as they say, sit deep in that saddle, watch that cow, and hopefully… enjoy!
I don’t care if you’ve been hauling down the road for a world title, or you are a weekend warrior that just shows up when your budget allows.. if you’ve entered that show pen, you know about concession food. Any #ProLoper or #CraftyCompetitor is keenly aware that not all concession food is created equal. They know what to pick to eat on those days your show nerves are resulting in acid reflux. They know what’s easiest to eat on-the-go, whether that’s into the warm up pen, or out to the barn to complete chores. Concession food is an art. Who knew?!
The other day while sitting in the stands watching a go-round of the 5,000 Novice Horse Non Pro over a particularly bland concession dish, I nudged a good friend and loping compadre and asked, “hey, if you could only eat one concession food for the rest of your life, what would it be?” As we giggled over the idea and debated the very important debate of breakfast vs. lunch/dinner items, a blog post was born.
So, I reached out to Facebook and queried the same question and the results were overwhelming, Taco-In-A-Bag was the clear choice, with Breakfast Buns coming in as a strong second. Now, let’s dissect these items and why they are fan favourites, and before you get to keyboard warrior-in’, yes, I am VERY aware that some of you are at a total loss of what Taco-In-A-Bag is, and we’ll get there.
Let’s start with our silver medalist, the Breakfast Bun.
Every horse show enthusiast knows about “hurry up and wait” and that’s perhaps why the almighty breakfast bun was one of the clear winners in the race. Let’s dissect a great breakfast bun. Generally, a bun made of delicious bread, then add an egg, some cheese, either sausage or bacon, and if you’re really fancy, perhaps some salsa in there.
When you arrive at the show, you are probably in the “wait” phase, you have time to down a cup of coffee, or seven, and eat a delicious breakfast bun. What a satisfying combo! When you are in the thick of the “hurry” phase, you don’t have time for lunch, you definitely don’t have time for dinner, and your stomach is still decently settled because you started the day off with a Breakfast Bun. Makes total sense why this is what so many people would choose to survive off of.
That brings us to the clear winner, Taco-In-A-Bag. I’m going to start off by explaining something to ya’ll, I’m actually a Canadian, so I used that ya’ll when I really have no business doing so and I know a lot about cold temperatures, moose, maple syrup and concession foods you may have never heard of. It turns out that many of my American counterparts ARE familiar with Taco-In-A-Bag. Some of you refer to it as Frito Bowl. But, many of you don’t have the faintest clue what i’m on about.
Let me break it down for ya. You start with a bag of Doritos, or Fritos chips. You bust those chips up into small pieces - think about that terrible cow that ran you over with five seconds left when you do bust those chips - and then cut into the long side of the bag. You add some delicious ground beef, sour cream, salsa, maybe guacamole if you’re fancy, definitely tomatoes, lettuce - fresh is always better and cheese. As one of my Facebook contributors informed me, “Frito pie is a small bag of fruit chips with ground beef of the taco seasoned variety and whatever topping you want. Usually just cheese and maybe a little lettuce though, cause us southerns like our heart attacks strong hahaha.”
So why is this the go to concession meal? Well it’s pretty much the closest you are going to get to a salad at a concession, and if you’ve been surviving off burgers and hot dogs, sometimes lettuce is a well-received gift. It covers all the bases, it checks off all the flavour profiles, and if you had to live off one food for the rest of your life, it’s a pretty solid and safe pick. Kind of like that cow that’s driving up and away from the herd, go with it.
So where are we getting deep? Well, at first I was surprised that many of you had never heard of Taco-In-A-Bag, “are they crazy?!” I thought to myself, “have they never lived?!” I questioned. BUT, concessions are kind of like competitors… they are all from different places, they may do things a little different but in a weird and wonderful way they are all connected by a love for the same thing, our horses. So next time you are at a horse show, I dare you to make a new friend, bonus points if they seem a little uncomfortable and like the venue is new to them. Even if they don’t know what Taco-In-A-Bag is, they may be pretty cool, but better yet, they may appreciate your friendliness more than you can know.
& before I let you go, I double-dog-dare ya to post a photo of you in your favourite CR RanchWear shirt eating your favourite concession food item. (***CR is known for spontaneous giveaways, hint, hint***)
I want to know, if you had to live off one concession food for the rest of your life - what would it be?!
See you on down the road! <3
Western Twist Media (WTM) is the creative outlet of professional writer and influencer, Louisa Murch-White. Murch-White is a published journalist, with work appearing in Western Horse Review, Quarter Horse News and features in Cowgirl Magazine and Cutting Horse Central. Personally, she is an avid and enthusiastic member of the performance horse world, and loves nothing more than showing cutting horses. WTM is driven by a passion for the performance horse industry. WTM specializes in assisting brands and companies tell their own stories through impactful marketing and advertising, social media management and freelance writing services. Our popular site also features unique and collaborative advertising opportunities.
We'd love to help you share your story: WesternTwistMedia@gmail.com
We're so excited to bring our good friend, Louisa's, amazing blog series, A Beginner's Guide to Cutting to our CR fans! Louisa is not only an amazingly talented writer and equestrian, but she is our CR RanchWear Canadian rep! Those of you north of the border can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org for all your CR needs. Long before she came on board with CR, we were huge fans of her blog-With A Western Twist-and we are pretty sure ya'll will love it too. So without further ado, here's the first installment from A Beginner's Guide to Cutting; it comes with a title we all can probably relate to...."Why Showing Horses is Really Hard". Enjoy! -Sue & McKenzie
Showing horses is like… really hard you guys. I’m not even being sarcastic, I’m truly whining about it. Learning how to show a cutting horse can be equated to pulling out your teeth, slowly, one by one, for no reason. As your doing it, your dentist is telling you, “You’ll know why you’re doing this when all your teeth are in your hands and you’re in writhing agony.” Being a beginner in the cutting horse pen has so many different levels of… hard.
There’s the cows.
Do you know how to read cattle?
Can you walk into a herd and confidently cut out the cow you want to work?
What about cutting for shape – if you have a bunch of cows in front of you, are you able to control the scenario?
What about after you cut one – are you able to read where they are heading to go? When they are going to stop?
Can you look at a herd of 20+ pure black cows and tell them all apart?
What about those ruthless cows that you cut out of the herd, drop your hand on your horses neck and that cow runs wall to wall like it’s jet-propelled? Do you have enough “courage” to hold that cow?
There’s a reason people say that it’s an art form to pick the best cows in a herd and to show levels of skill, accuracy and difficulty while cutting a cow. That stuff ain’t easy.
There’s the horse.
A cutting horse is expensive. Very rarely do “deals” work out in the show pen, ESPECIALLY if you are a beginner. So, as beginners we must cough up a pretty decent amount of money for a “starter horse.” Usually those starter horses are seasoned ponies that know their job, but you're looking at maybe a few years of use and a whole lot of maintenance bills from your vet in your future. If you have a solid horse that you can drop your hand on and it will get you through runs, no matter what your feet/body/hands are doing to it, you're one of the lucky ones. That horse is actually a unicorn and you should shower it with rainbow-glitter cookies because that’s what it deserves. Many of us are not so lucky, many of us have to deal with little idiosyncrasies that our horses throw at us in the show pen. Trust me, when your horse pushes a cow right under the judges stand and your practically sitting in their lap – it will not get you bonus points. There are certain places where sitting on people’s laps get you bonuses, and it ain’t in the cutting pen. The judge will check off “charging” on your scorecard and your run will be over before it even began.
Plus, if you are out there reining your horse around looking like you're trying to duel Louis the 14th on the battlefield, your turn back guys are likely thinking, “what the heck is she trying to cut? I’m trying to help this girl but god only knows if she’s cutting that black one, or that brown… oh whoops looks like she’s actually trying to cut that white one that she didn’t drive up far enough... and oh look she’s still committing to it and oh look again... she lost her cow.”
There's literally 7000x other things I could go on about, but you know, for the sake of keeping you reading you may now be able to see why I’m whining… because, to successfully show cutting horses right off the bat as a beginner you need to be equal parts Olympic level rider, cow-hand and mental sport psychologist with a healthy dose of sedative on board in your blood stream. Then, you need the aforementioned unicorn that sparkles erupt from every time you put your hand down to work a cow. That is, I’m convinced, the only way a total beginner to the sport can go out and mark 75’s every time they step to the herd.
As you can probably tell from this sarcasm-ridden blog-post, I am not the sedated cow-hand I need to be, nor is Lady the rainbow-glitter unicorn, but we’re TRYING to get there – damnit! However, the road to becoming a somewhat successful competitor is littered with sixties, sixties and tears people… sixties and tears. Now, just as you've come to the conclusion of this blog post and your going to write me a nasty comment about how i'm making anyone that's interested in the sport completely run in the other direction, hold up keyboard warriors and LET A GIRL SPEAK...
The sick thing with cutting horses is that, despite all the sixties and all the tears, the feeling of dropping your hand and working a cow perfectly in the middle of the pen, is one of the most addictive things in the world. I'm not kidding people, it makes EVERYTHING I just talked about stupidly worth it. It feels like magic. It does feel like your riding a glitter covered unicorn. It may only be 10 seconds of glittered covered unicorn riding but it's WORTH IT. So, we keep pushing forward at it, hoping that one day,we’ll stop sword fighting through our cuts, we'll stop picking literally the worst cows in the herd and a judge may actually think, “good run” and grant you something over 70. Here’s hoping, here's to riding cow-eating glitter-covered unicorns.
When I first started riding horses, I had no clue the impact it would have on me, especially when it came to the friends I would meet. Most people grow up and get to see their best friends everyday, I get to see mine a couple times a year. While that does make friendships harder, it makes the time you get to spend with them so much more special. They support you in ways that people that don’t ride horses just can’t and they understand the blood, sweat, and tears that go into being successful in the industry. You get to celebrate the victories and weather the slumps with your best friends, which is one of my favorite things about my best friends also riding!
2. The Places I've Visited
Most people dream about getting to travel all across the United States, but thanks to horses I have had the opportunity to. I get to visit some amazing places, all while doing the sport I love. It makes it a lot of fun when you haven’t had a successful show, but you still got to visit some amazing places.
3. The Time I've Spent with Family
The thing I love most about riding horses is the amount of time it has allowed me to spend with my family. Most high school aged kids don’t get to spend just about every weekend traveling with their parents (and grandparents in my case), but I wouldn’t change it for the world. They support me in every way that they can, whether that be driving, helping me clean stalls, or just being there for me when I am in a slump. They support me 110%, even though it is a huge financial and time commitment. I am the one who gets the rewards of riding horses, but I could not do it without the support of my family.
4. The Lessons Learned
The lessons that I have learned from riding horses are irreplaceable. In most sports, you have a team to fall back on, so if you aren’t on your “game” then other people can pick up the slack. That is not the case when it comes to horses. No matter how trained a horse is, they still need some guidance at times and if you don’t do your part, the outcome will probably not be what you wanted. The horses also count on you for pretty much everything. They cannot feed, water, or clean up after themselves, so great responsibility comes with owning horses. I am so thankful that I have had the opportunity for horses to teach me how important it is to be your best and the responsibility of taking care of an animal.
5. The Athletes (the 4-legged kind!)
The final thing I love about riding horses are the actual horses. They go out and do their jobs, all because we ask them to. They don’t understand the amount of money they just won or how prestigious the event was, they just go out and do their jobs. They are a thousand pound animals that are so willing to do whatever a human asks of them. All they want in return is some treats and some attention.
Summer is in full swing! CR RanchWear had a very busy, exciting June! As you may remember from our last blog, McKenzie, Alexis, and their fellow American teammates flew to Australia as Team USA to compete against the Australians in the NCHA Non Pro Challenge. Alas, they did not come home with the trophy, but we're pretty sure if there had been a "Best Dressed" award, they would have been victorious. CR RanchWear was proud to provide the team shirts for the USA!
Our second live auction took place on June 7th. Eleven CR RanchWear one-of-a-kind shirts went to new homes via the highest bids! Wine, dance moves, and some Name That Tune giveaways were among the highlights of the auction. Our next auction will be in August; follow us on Facebook for specific details.
Next, we were on to the NRCHA Derby in Paso Robles, California! This is one of our favorite shows of the year. We love Paso Robles and all of our cow horse friends. We cheered for our Sponsored riders and all the talented competitors. It's also fun to see what new shirts our customers like the best. The winners of the week were the Blue Floral with Purple Check and the Pink Gypsy Heart Paisley (pictured in the header pic of this post). Better get yours while you can! A quick wine tasting trip with friends topped off a successful week!
We were home for a few days to round up some new shirts, then Sue was off to the NCHA Western Nationals in Denver, Colorado. Florals were a big hit; the Sweet American Floral, Blooms of Rhea, and the new Purple Floral Vine were the quick sellers. The set-up in Denver allows us to watch the show from the booth. It's so great to see our customers in the show pen, winning in their CR!
While Sue was enjoying booth life in Denver, the world traveler, McKenzie, was off to Iowa to enjoy her family cabin in Okoboji. Who was also en route to the famous resort town? None other than good friend of CR RanchWear-singer songwriter Jeremy McComb! During his Troublemaker Tour, Jeremy was our first CR celebrity to take over our Instagram for 24 hours. A day in the life of Jeremy McComb! Jeremy did a great job with the CR RanchWear shout outs! Who will be our next "Day in the Life" guest?? Stay tuned...
The rest of the summer is sure to fly by! Coming up for us is the NCHA Summer Spectacular in Ft. Worth and The Mane Event Cutting in Las Vegas. See you down the road, and CU in CR!
McKenzie and Sue