Reatas & Recipes

By Mary McCashin

Zesty Summer Salad Dressing

We’re talking apple cider vinegar! ACV has been known for its health benefits for thousands of years!

ACV can do amazing things like fight acid reflux, relieve constipation, detox your body, regulate your pH, fight cancer, fight allergies, and help build your immune system.


Unfortunately, most people aren’t up for taking a shot of ACV so as an NTC, I’ve developed a great way for people to ingest ACV without hating me forever.

This dressing can be drizzled on a salad, fish, or even used to make cucumber salad. It’s tangy and sweet, and so incredibly beneficial for your body!


Mary’s ACV Dressing:

1 cup BRAGGS ACV (must be Braggs, must be raw/unfiltered for health benefits)

¼ cup raw honey

1 tablespoon dill

½ teaspoon black pepper

¼ cup water

¼ cup avocado oil (olive oil also works)

Shake super well and enjoy!

If you refrigerate this sometimes it will harden because of the oil. Simply microwave it in a glass jar for 15-30 seconds.

apple cider

It’s fast. It’s easy. It’s light. It’s tangy, And it’s healthy! 

By Mary McCashin

This past weekend (June 1-4) I had the pleasure of attending the annual Houlihan Colt Starting, a four-day colt starting clinic held at Buck Brannaman’s ranch in Sheridan, Wyoming.

Those four days taught me a tremendous amount, not only about the horse, but about myself.

Over and over you would hear Buck say, “You’re doing too much.” Not only did this apply to riders needing to realize when to do less sooner for their colts, but I found that it was applying to my life as well.

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More often than not I find myself running nonstop – juggling several jobs, a social life, the gym, and a boyfriend will make you do that. I love all of it, but after four days of submerging myself mentally into something I love it really struck me. “You need to do less, sooner.”

I know that I am not the only person who constantly finds themselves sacrificing the things they love in order to make everything fit into a day. Whether that’s grabbing fast food instead of feeding your body, passing up riding your horse so you can make an appointment, or even going to the extreme of selling a horse because you don’t have time.

“Do less, sooner.”

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I left the weekend with goals in mind for both myself and my horse. I am in no hurry to achieve any one thing with my horse in a certain time frame. I feel no need to prove that I can have a bridle horse in 18 months, or that we’ll be perfecting side passes in 3 months. Because as Buck says, “With the horse I always consider that if I do too much in too little time and I’m not patient, he’s going shut down and I won’t get anything done.”

So with that, I’m left to once again reassess my priorities.

  1. Always make sure I have time for my horse. It’s as important to him as it is to me. Even if it’s only a 10-15 minute ride, that’s better than no progress at all.
  1. Make sure I’m nourishing my body and feeding myself in such a way that my body can perform at its. This means getting back on track with my weekly cheat meal and sticking to being Paleo the rest of the week.
  1. To help encourage my students and allow them to also realize, there’s no rush. You don’t need to be doing XYZ in a certain time frame if you’re not ready. You have to trust the process and take comfort in the small steps of progress.
  1. There’s no shame in doing less, more often you’ll get more out of it.

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It was an exceptional weekend filled with friends, so much information, and reassurance. So often we feel guilty for not devoting 10+ hours to riding, the gym, etc. However, we can’t do it all and every individual not only has to figure out where their passions lie, but what their priorities are as well.

I know people that have reduced the number of clients they have so they can spend more time with their young daughter, realizing that being a present mother is more important.

I know clients that have decided they need to work on their sitting trot for quite a while before they consider learning to canter again. It took them almost eating dirt to realize you can’t skip steps.

I myself have kicked my two-year-old appendix out to pasture in hopes of healing a soft tissue injury. It might work, it might not, but there’s no rush. She doesn’t have to be started by a certain age.

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So do less, sooner. 

By Mary McCashin
Reatas & Recipes

Horse shows are not always associated with healthy foods. More often than not it’s hot dogs, greasy burgers, candy, and Lays potato chips. Not to mention the added expense if you have a barn full of riding students!

Here are some horse show snacks that you can pack and take with you! First things first, invest in a cooler. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, you can buy a small one for $15-$20 at any big box store. They will lifesavers!

  1. Ants On a Log

Who could forget these?! If you had a childhood like mine, they were staple snacks in my lunch box. Cut up celery, topped with a nut butter of your choice (peanut, cashew, sunflower, etc), and topped with raisins, dried cranberries, or dried blueberries. Throw them in a Tupperware and you’re good to go!

ants on a log

  1. Trader Joe’s Oven Baked Cheese Bites

These are AMAZING. They put Cheez-its to shame. They are 100% cheese, gluten-free, and high in protein. They’re a great option.

wn oven baked cheese bites2

  1. CHOMPS Beef Sticks

Made from 100% grass fed beef, these are a healthier (and tastier) version of a Slim Jim or beef jerky. They’re about $1.50 a piece, clean ingredients, and they’re actually GOOD. Throw some in the cooler or in your bag – they travel really well!

chomps 2

  1. Hummus or Guacamole Dippers

How’s this for an unconventional use of a travel coffee mug? Put a few dollops of your favorite hummus or guacamole in the bottom of the container, stick a handful of vegetable sticks (carrots, celery, and snow peas are a great mix) vertically in the hummus, screw on the top, and you’ve got  an easy, on-the-go, super-healthy snack.

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  1. Popcorn

Normally I’m not a huge advocate for popcorn, but I think it’s a better alternative to potato chips of some kind. I like Skinny Pop as it comes in a variety of flavors and you can buy snack bags of it at places like Costco.


  1. Fruit

Shocking, I know. The nutritional therapist recommending fruit! Grapes, apple slices, bananas, and clementine oranges are all easy to grab and go, full of nutritional goodness, and all kids love fruit (and usually don’t get enough of it).

  1. Turkey Roll-Ups

Simple, easy to throw in a container and go. The lunch meat and cheese of your choice, wrap them up, and throw them in the cooler! They’re packed with protein and definitely healthier than any hot dog!

These are just a few examples of the many snacks that you can pack for your next horse show! You’ll be happier and feel better eating cleaner versus eating something from a fast food restaurant or concession stand.