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    The Sparkling Saddle

    Authored by Jemma Petts

    Meet Viviana, a lover of horses and a young entreprenuer. When her passion for horse riding became more than a passing fancy, she started a business and worked towards purchasing her own horse. This little business owner sat down and told us about The Sparkling Saddle and her new friend, Jackson. 

    Horse riding dreams 

    Viviana had a common dream for 7-year-old girls. She and her mom, Amy, tell us more about her passion.

    Do your remember when you first wanted a horse?

    Yes! I first wanted a horse when I was around 5 years old. I have always loved the stories about the Kane Farm, which is part of my family's ancestry and property. Back in the day, the Kane Farm had a huge barn, stables and a functioning track with real racehorses. I love exploring the old horse barn that is left and I like to imagine what it used to look like. My dad has even driven me around the old overgrown racetrack. 

    For my 5th birthday, we went to French Lick Resort to celebrate and I went on my first pony ride at The Stables. The Stables reminded me of the Kane Farm, and I loved riding the pony, Sprite. It was fun and I felt safe. From that moment on, I knew I wanted my own horse.

    Mom, how about you? Do you reall the moment you knew it was a real passion?

    Viviana loved the pony ride at The Stables so much that soon after my husband and I agreed to let her try a horse riding lesson locally at Rick Jackson Performance Horses. Ironically, the family who offers horse riding lessons is located just across the field from the Kane Farm, which my husband's family still owns. I knew it was a real passion for Viviana after her first lesson. She began riding weekly and has learned so much.

    Amy Mings provided these photos. Image 1 shows Viviana at her first riding lesson. Image 2 shows Viviana and her sister after their first horse ride at The Stables, on her 5th birthday.

    A business idea is born

     Once the dream of owning a horse was solidified, Viviana's dad proposed she create a business to earn money. He would match her earnings, helping her achieve that dream sooner. She tells us all about the creation of The Sparkling Saddle.

    How did you decide to start your own business and what made you choose bracelets?

    Once I started taking horse riding lessons, I asked my dad if I could get a horse of my own. He told me that I would have to think of a way to save money for one and he would match whatever money I made. I thought making bracelets to sell would be a good idea because they are fun to make and something you can keep forever and wear all the time. I also liked that I could make my own designs and even add charms. I decided to add horse charms to inspire people to have a love of horses too.

    What is the best part of owning your own business? 

    Owning The Sparkling Saddle has been great for me! I feel responsible and I really enjoy having my own little work area and bead set just for my bracelets. I also have loved getting to see my customers pick out their bracelets and hear their feedback. They have been really encouraging and keep inspiring me to make more bracelets. 

    What is the hardest part?

    I want the bracelets to last a long time, so it took me awhile at first to figure out the best way to make them. The hardest part was finding the right materials to work with. I had to find a string that stretches enough and the right kind of beads.

    Do you have any advice for other young entrepreneurs?

    Never give up! Always believe in yourself and have confidence!

    Horse dreams are achieved

    The Sparkling Saddle had success and a new friendship was forged. Viviana introduces us to Jackson and tells us more about her new pal. 

    Can you introduce us to your new pony? What is his name, any special traits to his breed, favorite characteristic?

    His name is Jackson and he is technically an American Miniature Horse. Jackson is special because he lets me ride him and he is calm. I love the color of his mane - it is brown with blonde streaks. 

    How did you pick him? Did Mom and Dad help guide your choice? Did you do any research?

    We found miniature ponies for sale online at a nearby farm and my mom and dad agreed to let me go look at them in person. They had four ponies, but once I saw Jackson, I knew he was the one. I fell in love with him the minute I saw him. He was the first big purchase I’ve ever made by myself. It felt good to buy him with my own money.

    Do you have any new daily chores you’re taking on now that your mini pony has joined the farm? 

    I have to feed him, brush his mane, make sure he has water, take him for walks, and make sure he isn’t lonely. Jackson does like being with our sheep, alpaca, and llama though. After our walks, I sometimes give him treats. I also try to ride him as much as I can.

    What is your favorite part about having a new pony? 

    He is kind and lets me ride him. He is such a good pony! He always comes up to me.

    What are you looking forward to learning or doing with Jackson?

    I am looking forward to learning more about his body. I am inspired by horses and love reading about their bodies and their bones. I want to learn more about the differences between a big horse and a mini pony. I just want Jackson to have a happy home.

    We want to thank Viviana for sharing her and Jackson's story. Life Out Here includes hard work to make big dreams happen. If you want to keep up with Viviana and Jackson, you can watch Mom's blog at Maison de Mings, or find her on social media. 

    More reading

    Maison de Mings introduces us to Bleu Sky, the loveable guardian llama they've brought to live on their hobby farm.
    Meet these cute little horses (not ponies). Find out what makes a miniature horse so wonderful and how to care for them.