First, I got my excellent blogger gift exchange present; then I got my saddle rack (and, Tris would like to note, a bag of Meadow Mints that he is making a good dent in). Then it was time for Christmas proper!
My biggest and best present was from my parents: a Dover wool dress sheet. I had visited the Dover store in New Hampshire when I was in the area back in November, and found the sheet in his size in perfect condition in the bargain basement. It was on steep discount but still more than I wanted to shell out that day (considering I was already making a bunch of other purchases). My mother decided to buy it that day and wrap it up for Christmas for Tris. I've wanted a wool dress sheet/cooler for some time and this fits the bill perfectly AND it looks great on him!
If I were buying new I would've gotten black, but hey - the green looks good, and it was a gift and I love it!
Next horsey presents were two books from my wishlist:
This book is so freaking cool I almost can't stand it. It's got everything, and it's got multiple views of everything and it's all labeled to the nth degree and beyond. I had a reasonably good knowledge of anatomy and bones but wow, there are so may more muscles than I thought there were!
I had an uncle who went to massage therapy school, and I remember every night he worked on his coloring book of Grey's Anatomy to help learn human muscle groupings. Ever since then, I've thought it would be a cool idea to learn horse anatomy the same way - and now I can!
Cherry Hill's Stablekeeping
I LOVE Cherry Hill's books. I am full-on obsessive about the way she does these books: the explicit explanations, the dozens of photographs, the how-tos and the how-not-tos. Equipping Your Horse Farm was my bible when I was buying my trailer. I read it cover-to-cover multiple times, and I made photocopies of the checklists of what questions to ask when looking at a trailer and carried them around with me at all times. So I was thrilled to get this and spent a happy hour skimming through it. I'll do a more in-depth read later.
Last, the barn present to all the boarders was really sweet this year. I have been the lucky recipient of some pretty great barn presents, and every one has been great. This one is a nice combination of thoughtful and useful. (And I have to admire its clever craftiness!)
Isn't it marvelous? It was assembled from inexpensive items: a pot holder, a button, a towel, and some thread. Put all those together and you have a handy grooming cloth that attaches to a blanket bar, AND it has Tristan's name hand-stitched to the top! I love it!