I'm not so sure I like this bit, and Salem doesn't seem too thrilled with it, either. My main concern is whether or not his tongue could get pinched between the roller and the sides. See, the roller can slide back and forth on the wire. I rode Salem in this bit today and he didn't seem too crazy about it. There was a lot of nose-in-the-air and head-tossing and he had zero foam. So, I'm thinking either:
a) Salem does not like the Happy Mouth plastic
b) He doesn't like the boucher
c) His tongue is being pinched
d) He simply needs time to adjust to this bit.
We'll give it another few tries and see how it goes. He was much better by the end of the ride, which is encouraging. If he still hates it after a few rides, I'll see about getting the double-jointed one (or see if I can find a non-Happy Mouth double-jointed boucher...?).
By far one of my favorite gifts this year was the saddle pad that Heather gave me. She bought plain white baby pads for everyone and then bought ribbon and sewed it on the edges of the pads. Of course, she custom-tailored the ribbon to each person's taste. I adore mine! The ribbon is all different shades of blue; it is now my fave saddle pad.
How cute is that? Note how she even did a fancy fold of the ribbon in the corners. She is totally showing me up in the gift-giving department -- her gifts were hand-made, custom-tailored, thoughtful, and gorgeous. She is such a little Martha Stewart!
Now on to the holiday-themed pics. I was planning on having pics of Salem's very merrily-decorated stall. However, said decorations were delivered a one-two punch by Salem and Mother Nature. The gold Merry Christmas garland hung with red jingle bells was torn down by the wind. Three out of the four big red bows somehow ended up in Salem's stall, shredded to pieces. The cute red/white/green striped snowman stocking with the puffy hanging candy canes got ripped off the door by Salem; I put it down on the other end of the stall, and Phantom chewed the loop and the candy canes off. So now, his stall has one giant red ribbon, a few jingle bells, a red felt Santa bag full of treats, and a pathetic loop-less, candy-cane-less stocking thrown unceremoniously over the blanket bar. I try. Just imagine how it looked for the first ten minutes after I decorated it. Oh, well. At least I got some pics of Salem looking very jolly:
Salem must have been a very good boy this year; Santa Claus brought him a blue Jolly Ball, a Jolly Stall Snack holder with peppermint lick-y thing, two bags of carrots, a 5 pound bag of apple treats, and two boxes of peppermint candy canes. Phantom Claus brought him a box of multi-flavored candy canes, reindeer food (actually little cinnamon cookies) and a giant peppermint stick. Yowza, I think we will need to increase his exercise a bit! He and I both have been on a Holiday Heifer-fest lately. We've certainly gained a bit of "holiday weight." Well, New Year's Eve is just around the corner -- maybe we'll both get a gym membership!