Today’s Horse Facts: The Azteca – Full of Grace!

Do you know what an Azteca horse is? Check out this beautiful breed.

The Azteca: Full of Grace

AztecaHorse.jpg

(Photo compliments of Wikipedia)

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

(Ephesians 2:8-9)

If you live in Mexico, you know what an Azteca (Azz-TECH-ah) horse is. Since the country of Mexico is only a little over 200 years old, you’d think the Azteca has been around for hundreds of years, as well. But this beautiful breed only appeared on the scene in 1972 when Mexican charros (cowboys) began to breed horses with great skill and lots of “cow sense” to work on their cattle ranches. The charros crossed Andalusians with their Quarter Horses and the little-known Criollo mares with amazing results.  This new breed, officially recognized by the Mexican Department of Agriculture in 1982, now had speed, strength, a sweet disposition with the desire to learn, and equine “grace.”  The Azteca became so popular, he’s now known as The National Horse of Mexico.

You might think a horse with all these excellent traits would be a huge brute, but the Azteca only averages from 14.2 to 16 hands.  He can be any color or combination of colors accepted in the American Quarter Horse Association and the American Paint Horse Association.  His head is a medium size with a broad forehead, alert eyes, and medium ears which are always twitching.  His muscular neck arches slightly, and this little beauty often has a long flowing mane and just as spectacular a tail.  Despite his “average” height, his free shoulders and hips allow him to be incredibly athletic and smooth to ride.

Whether you like English or Western style riding or whether you need a graceful dancer or cow horse, the Azteca might be just for you. How about if you enjoy jumping, dressage, driving, cutting, penning, or reining?  Or would you just love a wonderful companion for trail riding?  Take a good look at the Azteca.  He can do it all and do it well.  All of these skills create a horse full of grace that anyone would be proud to own.

There’s someone else who is full of grace too—the Lord Jesus Christ. In fact, He has more grace than anyone ever had or ever will have. He has so much grace, He willingly shares it with us!

Do you know what the word “grace” means? One of the definitions describes grace as having mercy or forgiveness, and that’s exactly what Jesus did on the cross for us. He knew we could never be good enough to be allowed in heaven, so He died, rose from the dead, and is willing to save anyone by His grace. But there’s another important meaning of the word grace.

Grace also means thoughtfulness toward others. If someone has grace in his life, he shows kindness and generosity toward his family and friends, even when he doesn’t feel like it. As a Christian, when you show grace to others, your actions will show God how much you love Him and want to model your life after His. Then others might consider you as someone full of grace.

PRAYER: Dear God, I’m thankful Jesus shed His blood so I can go to heaven someday. As hard as I try, I know I can never be good enough to be ready for heaven. Now I know what grace really means, and I want to give to others with your help. In Jesus’ name, amen.

SADDLE UP!   (What would God have you do now?)

Think of the names of a few people who have shown grace to you and analyze in your heart how they did it. _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Take your ride: (Do you know?)  When Mexican breeders brought the Azteca to the United States, they crossbred him with American Paints to make a stunning, splashy horse called the American Azteca.

Dismount and cool down your horse! (Do you know?) “But grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever. Amen” (2 Peter 3: 18).

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Join foster kid Skye and her show horse, Champ, on exciting adventures in the Keystone Stables Series!

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Today’s Horse Facts: The Austrian Warmblood

The Austrian Warmblood comes from Austria, a country in Europe, long known for its outstanding horses

The Austrian Warmblood: A Loyal “Soldier”

Image result for austrian warmblood for sale

(Photo compliments of pinterest.com)

“You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.”

(2 Timothy 2:3)

The Austrian Warmblood comes from Austria, a country in Europe, long known for its outstanding horses. Like other Warmbloods, this stunning steed was developed as a super riding and competition horse. He has his roots in old Austrian cavalry (war) horses combined with the delicate Arabian and Warmblood sport horses, namely the Nonius and Furioso, both from Hungary.

In the mid-19th Century, the war horse/sport horse combination was crossed with Thoroughbreds and more Arabians to further refine the breed. And what a beauty emerged! From those came a horse suitable for classy dressage and show jumping as well as for trail riding.

Like many breeds in the mid-20th Century, the rise of machines, especially the automobile, caused the numbers of Warmbloods to decline. However to save the breed, Warmblood enthusiasts in Austria founded an organization in 1964 called the Association for Warmblood Breeding to promote the horse. Even so, the breed is still “battling” for recognition. It’s estimated only about 800 Austrian Warmbloods exist today.

This handsome horse has a height from 15.2 to 16.2 hands. Although solid colors of chestnut, grey, bay, and black are most desirable, a pinto studbook has been approved. (A studbook is a list of approved stallions available for breeding.)Whatever his color, the Austrian Warmblood has the reputation of having a pleasant character and a balanced temperament. If you see a Warmblood in action today, you’d never think this splashy mount could have been a warrior in battle hundreds of years ago, but that’s a fact.

The Warmblood has a history of being a good “soldier,” starting out in the Austrian cavalry. He had the reputation of being very loyal to his rider. Loyalty to the leader defines a good soldier.

How about you? Would you consider yourself a good soldier?

“I’m not in any army,” you might say. “How can I be a soldier?”

The Bible talks about Christians being good soldiers of Jesus Christ. If you love the Lord with all your heart, you’ll strive to be a good soldier by obeying God’s Word and doing the best you can every day. If you live to please God, then you are a good soldier. As you work hard to that end, remember to get your marching orders from the Bible, and you’ll be a loyal and faithful Christian, ready for the “battle” at hand.

PRAYER: Dear God, help me to be a good soldier of Christ. I want to obey you and be a loyal follower. Give me the courage to tell others about Jesus and His love for them. In Jesus’ name, amen.

SADDLE UP!   (What would God have you do now?)

Have you ever thought of yourself as a soldier? Think of two things you can do to show others you are a good soldier of Jesus Christ.

Take your ride: (Do you know?) The best way to recognize an Austrian Warmblood is by a brand, the letter “A,” placed on the left hip of foals.

Dismount and cool down your horse! (Do you know?) “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil” (Ephesians 6:11).

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Want a crazy horse adventure?

Read book seven in the Keystone Stables Series

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Foster kid Skye Nicholson has her hands full training a wild Mustang and trying to help new foster kid, Wanda Stallord, who is rude and spiteful around everyone.

Today’s Horse Facts: The American Paint Horse

Are Paint horses and Pintos the same breeds?

The American Paint Horse: A Horse of a Different Color

(Photo compliments of Wikipedia)

Overo Paint

The American Paint Horse is a splashy equine that turns heads in his direction. When a Paint prances by, whether the onlookers are horse lovers or not, they will stand in awe because of the horse’s stunning colors.

You might think, Oh, I know all about Pintos. They’re spotted horses. That idea is a common error because Paints and Pintos are two separate breeds.

The American Paint Horse is a western stock horse that stands between 14.2 and 16.2 hands with spots or “patches” of white and dark colors and must have either Quarter Horse or Thoroughbred parents. Also, because that horse must have a specific body shape and size to be registered, the American Paint Horse is a “horse” breed as well as a color breed. It’s not surprising that Paints are one of the most popular horses in the United States.

So, where did Paints get their start?

The first known record of any “two-colored” horses in America happened in 1519, when the Spanish explorer Hernando Cortes brought two horses described as having pinto markings on his voyage. Somehow over time, probably by trading, the flashy horses became favorites of American Indians, in particular the Comanche tribe. (Paint horses have been found in drawings sketched or sewn on buffalo robes.) By the early 1800s, horses with Paint coloring were well-populated throughout the West.

Throughout the 1800s and into the mid-1900s the two-or-three-toned horses were called pinto, paint, skewbald and piebald. Then in the early 1960s, interest grew in preserving and promoting horses with paint coloring and stock horse builds, so in 1965 the American Paint Horse Association formed. Today, you’ll find the American Paint Horse in practically every traditional stock-horse western event as well as a variety of other riding disciplines.

Most Paints are a splashy combination of either black and white or different shades of brown and white. Over the years, so many different combinations of colors have been bred that the American Paint Horse Association divided Paints into two different categories: overo and tobiano. The best way to remember the difference is that overos look like white horse that have been “painted” with brown spots. Tobianos look like dark horses with white patches painted on their coats. Whether marching in a parade or just jogging down a wooded trail, this spotted horse with its dashing variety of colors always draws smiles from so many fans. He’s certainly a horse of a different color!

(Photo compliments of Wikipedia)

Tobiano Paint

If you’re a Christian who’s not ashamed to tell others about Jesus, do your friends think you’re really “different?”  Do you agree to do good deeds and help others? Do you say no when someone suggests you do something against what God would want you to do?  If you’ve made up your mind to stand for Christ and live for him, then you can be just like the American Paint Horse and be a “horse of a different color.”

“Thy word have I hid in my heart that I might not sin against thee.”

(Ps.119:11)

 

PRAYER: Dear God, please help me to be different for you when I’m around those who want to do wrong. Give me the courage to say yes to what’s right and no to what’s wrong. Thank you. In Jesus’ name, amen.

SADDLE UP! (What would God have you do now?)

Are there some activities you know God would not want you to do with your friends? Ask God to help you say no.

Take your ride: (Do you know?) Paint horses with black spots are called “piebalds.” Paints with any other colored spots are called “skewbalds.”

Dismount and cool down your horse! (Do you know?) “This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference” (Romans 3:22 NIV).

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Ride with Skye Nicholson and her blue ribbon show horse Champ

in their exciting adventures

THE KEYSTONE STABLES SERIES

Book One

A HORSE TO LOVE

Today’s Horse Facts: The Akhal-teke – Shines like the Stars

The Akhal-Teke is one of the most beautiful breeds of horses in the world.

The Akhal-teke: Shines like the Stars

(Photo compliments of Wikipedia)

 If you’ve heard of the Akhal-Teke (AH-kuhl TEH-kee), then you are a true horse lover who’s interested in learning all about equines. Most folks, even horse enthusiasts, have never heard of this breed.

 The Akhal-Teke is one of the most stunning horses God ever created. If you’ve ever seen one in person or even in a photo, you might have thought someone had sprayed this amazing animal with metallic paint, no matter what the horse’s color. How did it get its spectacular appearance? Our creative God gave this horse’s coat a gorgeous metallic sheen that almost glitters.

To say the Akhal-Teke is a rare breed is an understatement. It’s believed to be one of the oldest and purest breeds, originating from Russia and Turkmenistan, where most are found today. At last count, there were only about 6,500 of these beauties world-wide with about 500 in North America.

When you look at an Akhal-Teke, you might think it’s so delicate, it can’t do anything but stand around and look pretty. But that’s not the case. This horse has proven itself not only in dressage but also in “tough” competition like fox hunting and extreme trail riding. But what catches everyone’s eye is not the horse’s performance. It’s the shiny coat.

Akhal-Tekes can have any solid color of undercoat, but the natural metallic sheen shows best in lighter colors like cremello. In fact, palomino and buckskin Akhal-Tekes are so beautiful, they’re nicknamed “Golden Horses.” In the sun, they shine almost as bright as the stars on a crystal, clear night. Whether an Akhal-Teke is performing in a circus or prancing in a parade, all heads turn toward the horse with the sparkling coat.

If you are a Christian, do you ever wonder how you could “shine for Jesus?” Maybe when you were little, you sang “I’ll be a Sunbeam for Jesus.” What do you think that means?

Shining for Jesus is something any Christian can do. You might think you’re still too young to do anything that would make you “shine,” but that’s not the case. Even at your age, you can please God by having a good attitude. That’s being wise. You can also help your parents around the house and listen to your Sunday school teacher and pastor in church. Being a good example is the best way to “shine like the stars.” Ask God to help youkissy-smiley-face to be a good example to others and give you the courage to talk to your friends about Jesus. Some day in Heaven, you’ll shine as bright as the stars!

Jesus, the Bright and Morning Star, will help you every step of the way.

“Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever” ( Daniel 12:3).

PRAYER: Dear God, please help me to be wise and have the courage to talk to my friends about you. I want them to know Jesus as their Savior. And I would love to shine like the stars when I meet you face to face. Thank you. In Jesus’ name, amen.

SADDLE UP! (What would God have you do now?)

It’s a good idea to have an attitude check every day.

Have you ever told any of your friends about Jesus? Think of some friends you’d like to tell about Jesus.

Things to Think About:

Take your ride: (Do you know?)

Because the Akhal-Teke has been crossbred so much with the Thoroughbred to create a fast, long-distance racehorse, all Akhal-Tekes have a Thoroughbred ancestry.

Dismount and cool down your horse(Do you know?)

“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16).

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SNOW, PHANTOM STALLION OF THE POCONOS

SNOW

Dallis Parker doesn’t let kids bullying her at school stop her from finding the wild white Mustang stallion that most people say doesn’t even exist.

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Horse Facts: Straight from the Horse’s Mouth, My Next Book

Take a look at my newest book idea, STRAIGHT FROM THE HORSE’S MOUTH, a 60-Day Devotional for tweens.

Horse lovers, I’d like to share some exciting news. I’m working on a new horse book (as if 13 aren’t enough.) This one’s a little different from all the rest because it’s a devotional for tween kids. We’re looking at 60 different horse breeds and relating them to characteristics a Christian kid should have in his life to glorify God.  So let’s get started. Each week for a while we’ll feature a different breed of horse after this introductory blog:

STRAIGHT FROM THE HORSE’S MOUTH

horses-mouth

A 60-day Devotional for Tweens

Let’s Go Riding!

Horses and kids. Kids and horses.

What is it with kids and horses?

Many kids think horses are the most beautiful creatures God ever made, even better than puppies!

As a kid, I loved horses that way. I’ve always said I was born with a silver spur in my mouth and have horse blood in my veins. I can’t remember a time I didn’t love horses.

If you’re fortunate enough to have a horse or to be around them (like mucking stalls at a riding academy in exchange for riding lessons), then you know the thrill of climbing on a horse and jogging him around the training ring or trotting down a serene path in the woods. If you’ve done so, I’m sure you’ve treated your mount with kindness, never kicking him in the ribs too hard or slapping him in the face with your reins. In return, he’s given you a wonderful ride you can talk about for hours with anyone who’ll listen without yawning a lot.

When I was growing up, I lived in a small town and couldn’t have a horse, but I dreamed about owning one someday. I read any horse book I could get my hands on, books like Marguerite Henry’s Album of Horses, The Black Stallion and My Friend Flicka. I collected horse calendars, plastic horse models, and all kinds of “horse stuff.” I colored horse pictures and watched TV Westerns along with any movie with horses in it. One Christmas, my parents gave me a “real” leather jacket with fringes all over it. I was in pretend horse heaven!

I finally had the chance to actually ride a horse … well, a pony.  When I turned about ten, my mother took me on Sunday afternoons to a riding stable where I rode Sugar, a Shetland Pony,  in a corral for a half hour at a time. Can you imagine the thrill I had every time I climbed in the saddle? I loved horses so much, I’d rub my hands real hard on Sugar when I had to get off. That way I took home with me that wonderful sweet odor of “horse.” It lasted a few hours (or until my mother made me wash my hands to eat supper.)

As I became an adult, I prayed I’d be able to have a horse of my own. I’m so happy to say that God answered my prayer. Once when I had my own home and a job to afford a horse or two, I had horses for a long time. I have years of wonderful “horse time” memories I’ll cherish forever.MyFifthHorse

Do you know there’s someone else very important in your life who loves horses as much or more than we do?

God loves horses. Do you know there are about 150 verses in the Bible that include the word “horse”? Do you think if God mentioned equines so many times in his Holy Word that he’s also very fond of one of the most beautiful creatures he ever made? But there’s something, or someone, God is much fonder of than horses.

You.

God wants you to know He loves you more than anything in this world. He also wants you to know about Him and His Son, Jesus Christ, who came to this earth over 2000 years ago and gave His life so you could live in Heaven some day.

The best way to learn about God and Jesus is to read the Bible. We call that special quiet time with your Bible “having devotions.” If you are a Christian, then you probably already have devotions every day, and that will help you become a strong Christian with a determination to do right.

So saddle up and get ready to hit the trail. Next time, we’ll look at our first horse, the American Albino, and see what’s so special about that breed.

Marsha

http://www.marshahubler.com

Have you read my Keystone Stables books yet? How about starting with A HORSE TO LOVE, book one in my best-selling Keystone Stables Series:

Foster kid Skye Nicholson hates everyone and everything until she meets a beautiful show horse, Champ, at a foster home and special needs riding academy

keystone-stables-book-1Available at any bookstore on online at Amazon, Zondervan, or Barnes and Noble

Today’s Horse Facts: My Fourth Horse, a Cute Pony!

My 4th horse was really my 5th horse. So which one was my 4th?

MY FOURTH HORSE

Candy

Well, horse  lovers, I had a blog all ready to post about my fourth horse then I remembered that my fourth horse was really my fifth horse! You’ll see his picture and story next time.

When thinking about my horses down through the years, wango! I suddenly remembered this little pony I bought years and years ago. I think her name was Candy.

My 4th Horse, Candy

Now to this day I don’t know why I bought her because, first of all, she was only a pony and too small for me to ride. Secondly, she wasn’t trained yet. All I can remember about her is that she was so darn pretty, I couldn’t resist when I saw her. I remember lunging her and working with her on a lead rope, but that’s about it. I don’t remember much more about her, like where I got her and when I sold her. I do remember that I didn’t have her for long, but I just enjoyed having her around for a short time, just to love.

Isn’t that just the way it is with us horse facts lovers? We can’t resist a beautiful hunk of horse flesh?

Next time, I’ll tell you about my fifth and sixth horses.

Happy riding!

Marsha

http://www.marshahubler.com

(Buy a horse book for a friend!)

(Learn about my Keystone Stables books at http://www.marshahubler.com )

 

Please check out my latest book:

SNOW, PHANTOM STALLION OF THE POCONOS

SNOW 

Dallis Parker has dreamed about owning a wild Mustang stallion

almost her whole life, but most folks say he doesn’t even exist.

But then in a strange encounter, she

meets Snow face to face, and both their lives are changed.

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Today’s Horse Facts: The Akhal-Teke

The “metallic” Akhal-Teke is probably the most unusual and one of the most beautiful horses in the world.

Jan. 5, 2016

The Akhal-Teke, a Metallic Beauty?

Akhal-Teke

Do you want to learn about an absolutely stunning and unusual horse? Have you ever heard of the Akhal-Teke (AH-kuhl TEH-kee)? Yes, it’s an actual horse breed, one that has its roots from Turkmenistan, a country on the northeast border of Iran way across the Atlantic Ocean in Asia. I have to admit that I never heard of the Akhal-Teke until I read about it in a horse magazine; in fact, I’m not sure how to even pronounce the name. So, let’s take our 10-question quiz and see how much you know about this breed that is little known, even to the passionate horse lover.

  1. The Akhal-Teke is probably the oldest purebred horse in the world.
  2. It is believed this breed is about 3000 years old.
  3. This breed was first used for raiding and war.
  4. This breed is known as a mountain breed.
  5. Most of these horses are found in Russia and Turkmenistan today.
  6. There are over 20,000 purebred Akhal-Tekes today.
  7. This breed has a long slender body that stands an average of 15-16 hands.
  8. They can be any color and any combination of colors.
  9. They are used primarily for trail riding and trail classes in shows.
  10. The most distinguishing trait of this horse is its beautiful metallic sheen over their base color.

A Cremello Akhal-Teke

A Cremello Akhal-Teke

Here are the answers. I’d be surprised if you get five correct. I probably would have gotten one or two correct:

  1. T
  2. T
  3. T
  4. The Akhal-Teke is known as a desert breed.
  5. T
  6. F  There are only 3500 purebred Akhal-Tekes in the world and only about 500 in the U.S.
  7. T
  8. F  They are all solid colors including dappled grey; but they are not pinto or app.
  9. F  They can be shown in practically any class including jumping, endurance, and dressage.
  10. T

Isn’t the Akhal-Teke an amazing horse? I have never seen one except in pictures. I think that metallic sheen, which shines through any base color even black, is absolutely gorgeous.

If you want to learn more about this fascinating horse, look up these other websites to check on additional facts:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6zdcYvbU4g (You MUST see this!)

http://www.akhal-teke.org/tekes-in-sports.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akhal-Teke

Happy riding!

Marsha

Visit me at Pinterest and see some of the horses I’ve owned over the years:

http://pinterest.com/marshahubler/

For exciting reading:

Whispering Hope

Book 7. Keystone Stables

Foster kid Skye Nicholson has her hands full trying to train a wild Mustang and befriend another wild foster kid who has no intentions of cooperating with anyone at Keystone Stables.

http://www.amazon.com/Whispering-Hope-Keystone-Stables-Book-ebook/dp/B003TO59SW/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1451949826&sr=1-1&keywords=Whispering+Hope+by+Marsha+Hubler