Infinity Farm

Relaxed and Forward; A Horse/Life Blog is my quest to understand and explain the deep and powerful connection between horses and humans.

Awe is the word that best describes what I feel about horses.  After an entire life with horses, I continue to be awestruck by them daily; spellbound by their intellect and humor, by their strength and physicality, by their breath on my cheek.

Part of the awe of horses is their fragility. From their first steps to the geriatric years, every day we have with them is a kind of victory over the impossibility of their beauty and frailty.

The beauty of a horse is the sum of his bravery and vulnerability. Maybe that beauty is what we humans aspire to emulate.

We share our home barn with llamas, goats, ducks, and Edgar Rice Burro, our moral compass. And a few dogs and cats. You can expect them to each creep into my writing from time to time.

My name is Anna Blake and I’m a horse advocate, equine professional, award-winning author, and proud member of the herd at Infinity Farm, on the Colorado prairie. I train horses and riders communication skills and dressage, and I write parables about horses and life.

It is just like man’s vanity and impertinence to call an animal dumb because it is dumb to his dull perceptions.  ~Mark Twain

47 thoughts on “Infinity Farm

    1. Dianne Hamann

      I am a Massachusetts licensed instructor. And yes, I agree that your animals are your best teachers. Also, so are your students.

  1. Maggie Frazier

    Anna, “found” your blog today after reading the article you sent to Habitat for Horses re: Abuse = when do you speak out.
    I live in NY – not physically involved with horses anymore – had my boy put down 12 years ago. He was the light of my life for 16 years. Now I live vicariously thru blogs like yours & others. Still get Equus magazine & read it from cover to cover! Your blog adds another window into the horse (and animal) world!!!

  2. Hey Anna, great to find your blog. My daughter has a cross Andalusian/Quarter horse and spends most of her time in the High Country of Victoria working for a trail riding company. Horses are her first love and mine a second (after my family). Look forward to checking out more of your gorgeous blog. Cheers from Australia.

    1. Hi Miriam (and your daughter), nice to meet you. I think we share a love of writing and the outdoors, as well. Thanks for coming along and I look forward to reading along on your blog as well. It makes the world a friendlier place!

      1. Hey Anna, thanks so much. So happy we’ve connected. I haven’t met too many bloggers out there that are as passionate about horses. We’ve just come back from driving Tash (daughter) to the High Country for another weekend of work with the horses. Lucky girl!

  3. Lynne Hall

    Hi Anna! I came across your blog rather by accident on Facebook and what a lucky accident it is! I am currently without a horse – to be honest, I am not riding at this time either – but I hope to one day have a horse of my own again. With that goal in mind, I remain a student of all who will teach me or explain how to achieve a better result a kinder way. My first horse was a joy, and he put up with many faults of mine due to my own ignorance, and in his patience and love I learned to seek a better way. I am inspired by the likes of Buck Brannaman & Craig Cameron; choosing to seek a soft feel that would render the western bliss I desired. I’m still chasing that, but I’m learning that Dressage can be for a horse what yoga is for a human. Your blog was a beautifully written, easy to understand and refreshing insight into a branch of riding I had previously considered Beyond Me. I am now inspired to tie dressage basics into my riding in the future and I would love to follow your blog consistently but am unsure how to achieve that.

    1. I’m never sure where dressage got scary, but thank you for giving it a chance. Because your horse will benefit the most! Thanks for the kind words. Hope you are back in the saddle soon.

      (subscribe by clicking the long button on the top right column that says “Sign me up to follow this blog!)

  4. Hey Anna, just reading and enjoying very much ‘Relaxed and forward’. Laughed out loud at your mothers comment about the lessons, people say that to me all the time and I’ve been riding for 50 years! I suffer from depression and my worst breakdowns have occurred when I was unable to ride. Our ponies might cost money but they keep us sane. thanks for your insightful thoughts.

    1. To Christine, who still “has to take lessons,” well, aren’t we the lucky ones. So glad you are enjoying Relaxed and Forward (and my other book might be worth a look-see, we might have even more in common.) BUT keep up the good work, horses and sanity; don’t want to give up either! Thank you.

  5. Alice

    I’ve recently moved to North Carolina where a new friend introduced me to you by lending me 2 of your books. What a powerful writer you are! I was deeply moved with virtually every essay. Such authenticity, strength with vulnerability, and power, too. I’ve recently learned about connection training which is using positive reinforcement for training and my two 19 year old thoroughbreds (I used to event) are so happy that I’m listening to them more. I’ve also studied the trust technique and Linda Tellington Jones and others. What I care about now is relationship with my horseI’m inspired by your writing to listen more carefully to my horses and also to take in a rescue or two… Thank you for your inspiration. You are making a difference in the world, in many ways!

  6. Barbara Macpherson

    Thank you for your great description. I also follow Warwick’ Schiller and am trying to listen to my horse more. I’m also following a Ribbleton subscription ATM trying to learn to listen to my horses.
    Just curious… if I hold the bridle up and he turns his head away.. what should I do to get him to accept it?
    Thanks again

    1. Turning away is a calming signal. Breathe, let him hear the exhale, and give him time to volunteer. You can’t “get” him to accept it; you can only invite him… slow and steady wins the race. Good luck, Barbara.

  7. Hello, very nice article, from the article i can feel that you really like horse, and i have similar feelings, sometimes i feel horse can understand human beings a lot. not only orders, but others

      1. Hi Anna, I hope I am posting this message correctly. I’m new at this, so Anna and readers please don’t hesitate to give me tips on posting. I read your memoir Stable Relations yesterday, found your blog today and set up my own blog minutes ago, although I haven’t yet composed my first blog. I love your book, your farm, your horses, your pets, your blog and you! That said, I can’t wait for the [update] sequel!

      2. Thanks for the kind words. I have sent you an email to answer your other questions. Thank you for giving the book a try. Off to check your blog now…

  8. Pingback: Part One: My Horse Betrayed Me. – Relaxed & Forward: AnnaBlakeBlog

  9. Hi Anna, I am currently rehabbing myself and my horse, Henry, after a bad wreck. Trying to really connect with him on his level rather than mine. It has been fun! I did on online challenge the first of the year. It required 40 hours of horsemanship [I did it with groundwork] and 30 rides all on one horse, an within 12 weeks. It was life changing for me. I want to do another one on my own. But since we have improved dramitcally, am unsure how to set up a program of progression.Most people out here see horses as a tool rather than a partner. It’s difficult to find a place to fit in with others of like mind. so I work alone with my husband and his dog out on our roads. Doing my best!!!

  10. Janice Mize

    Hello! I just realized I’m no longer receiving your blogs. I thought I got them on FaceBook but if so, I can’t seem to find how we connected. Regardless, I don’t want to miss another. I picked up your last one on FB as I follow Gina Keesling.

  11. Pingback: Part Three: Riding Above Fear – Relaxed & Forward: AnnaBlakeBlog

  12. Hey Anna, I just found your blog, and I’m hooked, I have subscribed. I have been riding since I was 5, let’s just say well over 45+ years… lol… Love what you have to say about horses, will be back to read more.

  13. Thank you Anna, I have a couple questions for you. Ok, first: I lost my 25 yr old quarter horse/Morgan cross Kola a yr or so ago, my love/my soul mate of 16 yrs. I now have a VA Sport horse (TB/Clydesdale/Paint), 7 yr old mare, (swore I’d never get a mare), lol.. She is young, just a baby, and I do hunter paces & fox hunting with her. She is very good when I ride with just my daughter & her horse, or my 2 other friends & their horses. But, when we come upon a group of other horses she starts to feed on the excitement & energy of all the horses & she starts to do, what I call her “ballet”, bucking & rearing at the same time, kind of like a rocking horse in the air. I’m told she looks beautiful while doing this, and I’m asked how I stay on??? I have come off of her twice, but not when she’s done this, weird, I know. I’m just now starting to ride again from healing 3 broken ribs after gracefully sliding safely to the ground, and then she decided to step on my chest to run to where another horse was (my friends horse that she has a crush on). Luckily I had my safety vest on. Anyway, do you have any tips on how to keep her calm when coming upon a group of horses in excess of our little group of 5? Second question, which book of yours would be best for me to read first to help me with my mare Moonshine? She is a very lovable horse, loves to rub on me, trying to break her of that when tacking up, she follows me like a puppy when I clean the paddock & stalls. Also, I am also starting my own online business selling horse, and pet products, (www.fortheloveofkola.com) so I haven’t had a lot of time with her this summer between healing ribs & trying to get the business up & running, so any info you can give me now that I’m trying to get back in the saddle is greatly appreciated & I will try to read one of your books asap. Thank you

    1. Kristine, yes, your mare is a baby, and it sounds like she has lots of anxiety and not much confidence. Slow everything down. Cut her work into smaller pieces so she isn’t overfaced, but instead she can succeed. Put her calmness and relaxation first. (Relaxed & Foward would be the most helpful book.) As for you, do it all in slow motion and breathe slowly, let her hear your exhale. Thank you.

  14. Robyn Homan

    Like previous comments, I found your blog by accident and have throughly enjoyed it. I see your coming to the land down under (Australia) next year, will get in touch with you to see if it’s possible for us to organise a clinic in Queensland on the beautiful Sunshine Coast. Cheers Robyn

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