I have always been a person who loves to learn and get their hands dirty. I learn through doing. I enjoy seeing how things are made and I love to practice. I have dabbled in many things over the years…writing a blog being one of them. I have also dabbled in photography, photo editing. In the past, I have taken an interest in cake decorating and very briefly in making confections.
Ever since we moved to our amazing home I have been slowly teaching myself how to DIY.
I taught myself how to create paddocks.
This means selecting the area, perimeter, and materials…hanging the gate…grounding the electric…and creating straight lines that are aesthetically pleasing.
I cleared heavily overgrown saplings to create more open space.
At the end of the summer, my uncles and neighbor helped Zac construct the wonderful shed for the horses. I didn’t play a large role in the actual build but Zac and I both learned a lot in the process. I also learned JUST how tall 16ft really is!
I designed the chicken coop and Zac constructed it…but I assisted with the concept. When we added the chicken run I helped with its construction.
As I became less worried about using the tools I found myself taking on my own projects.
I began by building a set of jump standards.
Then I added a gate to the pool deck and matched the design to blend in as if it had always been a part of the deck.
Next, I made a trail bridge to work towards an obstacle course.
My trainer loved the jump standards so I have made more. To date, I have constructed 9 or ten sets.
It wasn’t wood, but I also created some unique portable corrals using scrap PVC.
Just before the weather got too cold I constructed a wooden box (not well, admittedly. The box was painted block and stuffed with insulation. It played a major role in keeping the horses’ water unfrozen all winter long.
At the end of the summer, I was asked to create a gate…the kind made of lattice used as filler for jumps. So I made that too.
This year I’ve got some ambitious projects.
Thie first that I have tackled is a 5 cubby bridle rack. My trainer sent me a photo of something similar for inspiration and we customized it to fit her needs.
My trainer has nine horses at the moment, so I made two 4-foot racks. The photo given appeared rustic so I used a high-quality rough-cut material and sanded it down to get a rustic-yet-finished look.
Each horse has it’s own bridle and above the bridle his/her sports boots are kept.
Following the bridle racks I have been designing and planning a cross country jump of my own.
The jump is a coop style. These tend to be heavy and often a semi-permanent part of cross country courses.
Currently I am limited on space for true cross country, so I designed my jump to be 100% portable. I build the coop atop rugged 10″ castor wheels and added a hitch to the other side. Now I am able to tow the jump anywhere, place the hitch end on a concrete block (that I bring with me on the ATV), and place a chock behind the wheel to prevent rolling. I finish the placement with a couple of ground lines on either side to help the horse gauge the height of the coop for takeoff.
I am now currently working on a grain bin for my trainer.
For this project I am NOT designing it nor am I reverse engineering it. Fortunately, there is an incredible blog called diyhorseownership.com that covers the build step by step.
If the completed bin comes out as nice as the photo my plan is to make one for my own home next.
So far it’s coming out well….
My ventures don’t end there.
Stay tuned…I have high hopes of building more coops, Jacob’s ladder jump (three standards in one to make a triple oxar), a nice bench for our 4 season room, a tack cabinet, and a farmhouse table!