The Difference Between a Dream and a Goal

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So the last few months we've been featuring topics on overcoming struggles and bouncing-back positively into life. Naturally the next step from accepting change needs to happen is to actually plan your next steps forward and set goals to get your groove back!  At The Saddle Camp, as much as we love watching our riders develop their confidence and take a positive step into the future back to everyday life, we also LOVE creating MAGIC and the seemingly IMPOSSIBLE! There is nothing more satisfying than proving to both ourselves and our doubters exactly what is POSSIBLE when you have a dream!

Our favourite quote at the moment is "The Difference between a Dream and a Goal - is a Plan" because of its abrupt truth. When you envision your dream, make stepping stone goals towards it.  Our path is never straight nor flat when chasing a dream but as long as we are always moving toward it (be that forward or sideways) we can create our very own MIRACLES!

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A family business that has successfully chased their dreams happened to walk onto our farm not too long ago and shared with us their story; Gilberts Equestrian. 

Beginning with a love of horses in the UK, the Gilbert Family knew they would be a part of the industry from the get-go, it was just a matter of how! 

With the drive and passion, little by little (over many years) that little competition hobby bloomed into a beautiful competition yard in the heart of Herefordshire. Now run by Penny and her daughter Chloe - a qualified riding coach - the yard specialises in Eventing and Event Ponies producing horses and ponies for all ages and skill sets. "We often have a vast range of horses competing from low level to international." Whilst running the yard, Penny still regularly competes at dressage on her warmblood named Diamond. 

As riders themselves, the Gilbert Family understood the markets need for correct fitting and quality equipment for all riders (from happy hack to top level competition), and established Gilberts Equestrian in 2010. Its an online Equestrian Store.  In 2017, after many visits and a round-the-world move, Penny's daughter & son-in-law - Annabel & Jonathon - expanded the family brand to Australia. Living in Australia only drives the Gilbert Family further to bring quality, dependable products that are sure to endure our climate from around the world, to your door so you can continue to RIDE YOUR WAY. 

You will find Gilberts Equestrian products online at www.gilbertsaustralia.com.au 

October 2018 Goss

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This month at The Saddle Camp there's been a buzz of excitement! Spring is in the air and new aspiring riders are coming out of the woodwork to enjoy all the Camp glory!
We have also Re-Vamped our Website; see the new look HERE!!

Our monthly FEATURE ARTICLE is The Difference Between a Dream and a Goal; how we made our Dreams Come True and how you can too!  We also hear from Gilberts Equestrian on how their dream equestrian business came to life!


All your favourites can be scrolled to in this order: What you can get involved in, What's been happening, Competitions, FEATURE (including How I Got into Horses), Shout outs and For sale. 

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What you can get involved in this October!

School Holiday Weekend Camps 1 place left for a Sleepover on the last weeekend.   But there are plenty of places available for Day Camps and Mini Adventure Rides. You'll have your own horse for as long as you stay, for magical adventures!  But they're filling fast so BOOK NOW

Halloween Spooks Camp! October 27 & 28 weekend camp will be a fabulously spooky camp, featuring a trick or treat spotlight tour on Saturday night and Fancy Dress Show Day on Sunday (so pack your costume!) BOOK NOW

Saddle Club After School Horse Riding returns in the school term. We are also accepting Active Kids vouchers when you prepay for an 8 week term! You can reserve your place in the Club online HERE or book direct via email to use your Voucher!

Christmas Holiday 4 Day/3 Night Camps are filling fast. If you want your horse riding dreams to come true this Christmas we highly recommend BOOKING NOW!  If Santa doesn't bring you a horse for Christmas, maybe he could bring you a Gift Certificate for your own horse at Saddle Camp!  So much easier than squeezing it down the chimney :)

SAVE THE DATE:
14th October: Be a Steward for the day for Bungendore Riding Club's Trail Riding Challenge at The Saddle Camp. You'll learn about stewarding a course, vetting a horse before & after the Challenge, and you'll receive a special rosette for your efforts!  Enjoy a delicious complimentary picnic lunch while watching the beautiful horses complete their challenge before your eyes. No minimum age and families are welcome - we need at least 14 keen stewards! Email [email protected] to confirm your spot. 

3rd November: Kate Fenner Engagement Clinic and Demonstration hosted at The Saddle Camp - poster above (Contact Michelle Ridley for Bookings and any questions)

17 & 18 November: our Champions Challenge, Saddle Camp Sleepout and Aboriginal Cultural Day is on again!  All our trophy winners from 2018 will compete for the coveted Saddle Camp Champion Rider '18 Trophy and Polo Shirt, with prizes for everyone and trophies to 3rd place.  Aboriginal Elder, Noel Butler, will take us on a Bush Tucker Walk, and stay late for a Cook Out over the coals.  We'll sleep under the stars, and wake up to a day full of horse riding - trails, side saddle riding, driving the pony & gig, an archery comp, a wildlife photo comp and party games on foot.  It's $85 for a single day, or $150 for the whole weekend.  Book in now via email to save your place!

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What's Been Happening:

During September The Saddle Camp has been a herd of activity! Below are just a few of the highlights that could be you on your next visit!

Horsewyse Magazine competition winners Caitlyn and her friend Alexandra (above) had a FANTASTIC time on their weekend camp! Thank you to Horsewyse magazine for organising their stay! You can enter to win any of Horsewyse Magazine's competition by purchasing it at your local newsagent or online. Check out www.horsewyse.com.au

We also had the pleasure of helping the Air Scouts from ACT complete their World Environment Badge by planting some native trees here.  They compliment our Sheoaks we've planted for the Glossy Black Cockatoo. Adam Shipp from Yurbay took the scouts out for a Bush Tucker Walk, and we all sampled the rice plant, and Black Wattle Tree sap that's growing here, along with some beautiful teas and mountain peppers he'd brought along.

Adam was a wealth of information about our native bush foods, and we filmed tidbits of his knowledge. Helen's working on putting them on QR codes around the property, so very soon you'll be able to go for a "Technology" Bush Walk or Horse Ride.  Stay tuned!

If you're interested in your own tour - Aboriginal Elder, Noel Butler, will be taking us out on Saturday 17 November, and staying with us till late as we cook up dinner in the fire coals.  Email [email protected] to book your place!


We have had many people come and stay (and other show up and upgrade their accommodation!) to our New Tiny House!! We are stoked you all love it as much as we do! and encourage those who haven't checked it out yet to do so through the link or come and visit for a walk-through! You can book our tiny house directly through www.airbnb.com.sg/rooms/27033779 Our latest visitors can be seen on a family trail ride in the pictures!

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Staying positive!

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Staying positive! We know just how impossible it seems to stay positive when times get tough. Throughout our time operating The Saddle Camp (nearly 21 years!) there has been many ups and many downs, and times when our goals seemed so out of reach that we had to consider "giving up" the only sensible thing to do.  They say "Living Your Dream can often feel like living a Thrilling Nightmare". 

And it was in these times we had to step back and ask ourselves Why? Why did we start this crazy adventure? And why is it so important to our hearts that we keep it going?  The truth: to enlighten others and brighten their lives so they could brighten ours with personal success stories and a shared love of our beautiful horses! 

And those highs?  When the planets are aligned and everything comes together?  They make everything so worth it!!!  In fact, you forget about all the turmoil you went through to get there!  Just like learning to ride :)

So what do we do to get through and come out on top at the end of the hard times? We make our goals a little smaller - into more reachable steps, celebrate the wins a little more than we usually would and make partnerships with positive and empowering people and businesses that keep us thinking outside the box on ways to reach the biggest picture of our goals.

This month we have partnered up with two businesses that bring both awareness and positivity to people not just in the equine industry; Soldiers United are all about sharing uplifting content and raising awareness of mental illness and seeking your own help, and MyCharmedHorse inspire us to "love the little things" in the everyday by adding a little bling to our tack and remind us of the little wins that keep us pushing forward.

For Sierra from MyCharmedHorse her horse Ace was her inspiration. "I always thought he should have a piece of jewellery on his accessories! It all began in 2016 when I started putting charms on Ace's braids at horse shows, followed by his bridle and my backpack. Soon after, everyone at my agistment barn and several others were interested in my charms. My main goal is to provide customers with quality, adorable products that remind you of the little pleasures in life and make charms to inspire all (not just equestrians!). Since starting MyCharmedHorse as a luxury and inspirational equestrian brand, we have expanded to also offer neclaces, bangle bracelets, logo hats, saddle pads and tote bags to spread our message." We love Sierra's inspiring charms that bring a smile to our face as we saddle up the horses, because at the end of each day it's the little things that add up to be the big things in life.  

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September 2018 Goss

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This month has again been dry around The Saddle Camp, like many of our fellow farms our hills are rolling a shade more red than green, and no weather change expected before February 2019.  But that hasn't affected the frequency nor size of the smiles we've seen throughout August! 

This months FEATURE ARTICLE is Staying Positive! How a positive mindset and establishing goals can help you both with horses and with your everyday lifestyle. We also hear from new partners MyCharmedHorse and how their equestrian charm business aims to inspire positive vibes in riders of all ages and disciplines.

All your favourites can be scrolled to in this order: What you can get involved in, What's been happening, FEATURE (including How I Got into Horses), Competitions, Shout outs and For sale.

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What you can get involved in this September!

Saddle-Club After School Riding Fun: every weekday during school term, join us for afternoon tea followed by a trail ride and mounted games to improve your riding skills in a relaxed and fun atmosphere. $30pp, Book Now under "riding lessons".

Weekend 'Bounce Back' camps: If you or someone you know has been struggling to Bounce Back their confidence and self-esteem, The Saddle Camp offers another world to escape to, to help you rebuild and regain control of the reins. Stay for the weekend or stay for the day and discover why horses really are the best therapy! Book Direct by calling Helen on 0417 456 093, or email [email protected].

Would you like to be a Steward for the Bungendore Riding Club's Trail Riding Challenge at The Saddle Camp in October?  You'll learn about stewarding a course, vetting a horse before & after the Challenge, and receive a special rosette for your efforts!  Enjoy a delicious complimentary picnic lunch while watching the beautiful horses complete their challenge before your eyes. No minimum age and families are welcome - we need at least 14 keen stewards! Email thesaddlecamp.com.au to confirm your spot. 

Our 4 Day/3 Night camps have now filled for the October holidays! PREBOOK for next school holidays now to secure your camp!  We still have a few places available for Day Camps, Long Day Camps, Weekend Camps and Long Day Camps - so book in early!

Our Long Day Camps are Monday's Gymkhana & River Ride, Wednesdays River Ride & Picnic Trail Ride and Sunday's Picnic Trail Ride & Show Day.   They cost $170 for a full day from 7.30 am to 4.30 pm (Wednesdays finish at 9 pm).  Long Day Camps aren't yet a part of our booking system so Booking Directly is the best way to ensure you don't miss out.


Is your Birthday coming up?  We have Gift Certificates available, or you can bring all your friends for a Horse Riding Birthday Party!  BOOK NOW

SAVE THE DATE: 17 & 18 November, our Champions Challenge, Saddle Camp Sleepout and Aboriginal Cultural Day is on again!  All our trophy winners from 2018 will compete for the coveted Saddle Camp Champion Rider '18 Trophy and Polo Shirt, with prizes for everyone and trophies to 3rd place.  Aboriginal Elder, Noel Butler, will take us on a Bush Tucker Walk, and stay late for a Cook Out over the coals.  We'll sleep under the stars, and wake up to a day full of horse riding - trails, side saddle riding, driving the pony & gig, an archery comp, a wildlife photo comp and party games on foot.  It's $85 for a single day, or $150 for the whole weekend.  Book in now to save your place!  Just email back.

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What's Been Happening:


The drought has seen us visited by many native animals (wallabies, birds and wombats) during the day trying to source water and food, lucky our horses don't mind sharing! And have been a thrilling experience for our guests to ride among!

On the 11th and 12th of August we belatedly celebrated the horses birthday with lots of riding, games and of course cake!  We're not sure whether the riders or horses enjoyed the cake more?!

We were lucky enough to source a large bale of Oaten Hay for our Saddle Camp horses to graze on and keep their tummies full over their Birthday Weekend, too!  

This month saw Chloe Grozdanovski spend a week with us on work experience - learning how to run an equine business from feeding and cleaning up after the horses to the fun stuff (riding and training), how to give lessons and be a good influence by demonstrating safe handling techniques. We loved Chloe's photography skills and you can see some of her collages she made for us on the Facebook page!  If you're interested in staying here as part of your School's Work Experience Program, we can send you a detailed program of what we'll cover.

We have had lots of new SaddleClub after school members enjoying their trail rides and mounted games, and on quiet afternoons having private lessons to really ramp up their skills quickly.

We've also had guests in our new Tiny House!!  Our tiny house sleeps up to 4 with a kitchen and bathroom of it's very own. Look out your bedroom window down the rolling paddocks and see the horses and native wildlife. You can book our tiny house ($185/ night including meals & spotlighting tour at night) directly through https://www.airbnb.com.sg/rooms/27033779.  And this week it's been featured on Booking.com for just $163.64.  Just search Braidwood, Tiny House Saddle Camp.   

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Bouncing Back from Bullying; and how horses help!

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Bouncing Back from Bullying; Horses worldwide are already known for their calming nature and aid in helping people of all ages and backgrounds regain confidence and overcome a variety of personal struggles (from anxiety and depression to PTSD and autism). Here at The Saddle Camp we have the pleasure of introducing to not just our horses and how great the equestrian sport is, but also to re-introduce people to themselves and their confidence.  We see them change and glow from the inside out!  Our latest addition to Weekend Camps is our Bounce Back Camp.  Run similarly to our routine camps but designed to help you communicate and control your dreams so when you head back to reality on Sunday afternoon you feel rejuvenated and inspired to take on your week. If you're not able to stay the whole weekend we would love for you to join us for the day, make a new 4 legged and lots of 2 legged friends and see the difference a little horse magic can make to your life!

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Someone who has been there and been saved by horses is the amazing Gill Shepherd, Author of "Buddy" the childrens picture & chapter book. Here is how she got into horses and how they inspired her writing:
Gill moved with her family from England and settled in Australia when she was 5.  She'd always loved horses and finally at the age of 14 her parents worn down by years of longing went to the local sale and bought one - a totally unsuitable first horse for anyone. 

He was a handsome Palomino Gelding named Golden Power, a retired trotting horse (harness racer) who was unstoppable to ride.  So Gill had many 'adventures' until she somehow worked out that it was the bit causing the trouble.  At the first day at her local Pony Club Golden Power told everyone quite clearly that he didn't like to wear a bit and Gill was asked to leave after the first day when she asked if she could not use a bit in future.  So Gill skipped Pony Club and ignored those who teased her and were mean to her about her horse (even though it hurt so much).  Gill rode Golden Power in a halter and with no bit at home, on rides and to the beach very happily.  She went on to teach him how to trot and jump and entered and won many hacking classes and jumping events as he was so beautiful and clever at jumping.  

Golden Power was the first horse of many in a lifetime of riding and working with horses.  Gill says the secret to her success is the lesson that Golden Power taught her, which is you need to really listen to them.  This took her all the way to competing at High Level Dressage, becoming a qualified Equestrian Australia Riding Coach, an Equine Body Worker who releases tension through horses muscles, and a qualified Saddle Fitter, and President of Bitless Inc (the National Equestrian Association for riders, drivers and groundwork handlers who wish to train and compete bitless, bridleless or at liberty.  And she's absolutely delighted to see the horses at Saddle Camp in their bitless bridles!)  And then to writing her book - Buddy the Special Chestnut Horse.  

Gill met Buddy through her job as an Equine Body Worker and Saddle Fitter and saw immediately that he was special.  It took many years and an unhappy road for Buddy before he and Gill were together (now forever) and the journey to bring them together is the storyline of the book.  The story would not have been told if it wasn't for a friend, Amy Curran, who is also a publisher, asking her to review her book "Bobby The Plain Faced Cattle Dog" which is a part of a series of books with a social message designed to help children with issues such as bullying, friendship, loyalty and acceptance based on real animals.  Gill told Amy how the story about Bobby reminded her of her journey with her horse Buddy who was very insecure but would blossom when everything was right in his world and Amy encouraged her to write the story down and send it to her.  The book is now a reality and is part of the Tales of Tails series.  Amy and her dog Bobby, as ambassadors for Angel's Hope, travel to schools, pre-schools and libraries to read the book and help spread the word that Bullying is Not Ok.  Buddy is too shy to visit schools but loves receiving visitors at home especially when they bring carrots.  But be sure to bring a towel as he will thank you by licking you all over! 

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August 2018 Goss

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This months FEATURE ARTICLE is Bouncing Back from Bullying; how horses have helped young people rebuild their confidence and self-esteem and how you can get involved if you feel like you need to escape the world. We also hear from Gill on how horses have inspired her writing of her book Buddy. 


All your favourites can be scrolled to in this order: What you can get involved in, What's been happening, FEATURE (including How I Got into Horses), Competitions, Shout outs and For sale. 

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What you can get involved in this August!

The Horses Birthday Weekend Camp August 10-12 ( Note: We are closed 4-5th august for a family function) BOOK NOW  and follow the prompts to choose a Weekend Camp starting 11 August.  Just 2 places left...

Weekend 'Bounce Back' camps; If you or someone you know has been struggling to Bounce Back their confidence and self-esteem, The Saddle Camp offers another world to escape to, to help you rebuild and regain control of the reins.  Scroll down to the feature article for more details.

We now have Long Day Camps too! Monday's Gymkhana & River Ride, Wednesdays River Ride & Picnic Trail Ride and Sunday's Picnic Trail Ride & Show Day are $170 for a full day from 7.30 am to 4.30 pm.  Whilst they are available all year they are very popular during school holidays. Long Day Camps aren't yet a part of our booking system so PREBOOKING directly is the best way to ensure you don't miss out.

Birthday coming up? Celebrate the horselovers way! BOOK NOW

PREBOOK for next school holidays now to secure your spot! Our 4 Day/3 Nigh camps always fill up quickly so don'tt miss out. 

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What's Been Happening:

We have been lucky enough to be visited by the lovely Marion and Brieta from Equestrian News and Lifestyle Magazine! What an inspiring pair of ladies!  They even left us some copies of their fabulous mag available for purchase at our Gift Shop/ Café. 

We also had the pleasure of a visit from the family behind Gilberts Equestrian an online equestrian clothing company!  The children had a great ride out on Champ and Victory, while the adults chatted about all the joys, delights and challenges of working in your dream job, while caring for your children.  Their story and a link to their website can be found in For Sale. 

"The Clubhouse Cat" has been adopted by the lovely Kari, Rhiarna, Zara and Zack.  Her new name is Liquorice. Doesn't she look so happy in her new home?

July school holidays have been a blast these last 2 weeks! Check out the collage below of smiling faces and campers shenanigans - this could be you!

We have also announced the arrival of our new Tiny House!! Our tiny house sleeps up to 4 with a complete kitchen and bathroom of it's very own. Look out your bedroom window down the rolling paddocks and see the horses and native wildlife. You can book our tiny house ($185/ night including meals) directly through https://www.airbnb.com.sg/rooms/27033779

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