Thursday, April 10, 2014

Horses!

Learning to Ride
I seem to have a "farm animals" theme going on here, but here is our other latest adventure (other than the chickens, of course).  The kids and I have started volunteering at a local horse farm.  Actually, it is a horse rescue - they take in horses who are injured, mistreated, or unwanted, and give them a new life (more information here).  I'm loving it, because I was (am) one of those girls who always wanted a horse and never could have one!  So, as Hubby says, I can get my "pony fix."

So far, we've volunteered twice.  Last week we went for the first time and were put right to work mucking stalls, sweeping, and grooming horses.  This week we went to work again, and then the kids took their first-ever riding lessons.  They both loved it!  They learned how to put the saddle and bridle on, along with how to get on the horse, walk, stop, go backwards, trot, and steer.  Their instructor also spent some time working on their balance by having them ride with their hands in the air and their feet out of the stirrups while she had the pony on a lunge line.

Sometimes it's hard to teach kids to work.  My kids are expected to help with household chores and things, but all in all they have it pretty good.  This is real work, and they both consider it a job, even though they aren't getting paid.  They are proud of themselves when they are done.  They are also finding out that work can be hard.  But these horses need help.  They can't clean their own stalls or get their own food or take care of their own coats.  Some of them have heartbreaking stories.  My kids realize that they are doing something important.  They are caring for another creature, even if that creature can't do anything for them in return.  What a lesson to learn!




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