A Farm Girl and Her Horse

Me and "Poppy" circa approximately 1986

Like most little girls, I was obsessed with horses.  I was lucky enough to have parents who recognized my infatuation, and gave me my first pony on my fourth birthday.  I couldn’t tell you how many hours I spent just riding “Poppy” around our yard.  I wasn’t big or strong enough to put the saddle on by myself, so I’d often just slip his bridle on and ride around bareback.

There are many pictures of me on horse back throughout my childhood.  I eventually outgrew my pony and moved on to “Snips,” my first horse around 3rd grade.  I have fond memories of coming home from school and riding until dark.

Snips was the first horse I took to the 4-H fair.  We had no clue what we were getting ourselves in to, and didn’t do very well that first year. But, that didn’t deter me and I went to the 4-H Achievement Show every summer until I was 18.  The years gave me many learning experiences, and my perseverance lead me to eventually win the top horsemanship award.

I even had my senior pictures with my horse, "Lucky"

I will never forget a conversation I had with one of my dad’s friends when I was about 12 years old.  He told me that I wouldn’t be interested in horses much longer, he was sure that boys would be more fascinating to me.  I told him, “Yeah right, maybe boy horses!”  I proved him wrong.  I never lost interest in horses.  I may have gained an interest in boys (what teenage girl doesn’t?)  but, horses were much easier to figure out and provided a listening ear that no boy would ever compare to.

Even when I moved on to college, I found a gentleman who would allow me to come out to his farm and ride whenever I wanted.  It was just the assurance I needed during those first nervous days away from home.

All my life,  I owned a horse, up until I had my first child and realized I just didn’t have the time to dedicate to a horse.  For the first time in 20 years I was horseless.  At first I was so busy I didn’t really even notice.  But after a while I couldn’t help but feel like something was missing.  I’d try to get outside and go for walks, help on the farm, gardening…but there just wasn’t anything that could replace the relaxation and tranquility that horseback riding provided me.

This past spring, with the blessing of my hubby, I decided to get back in the saddle.  Literally.  It has always been a dream of mine to own a draft horse to ride and drive.  I started searching the classified ads.  After several months of research I came home with Dolly, a small-for-a-draft percheron.  She is just what I’ve needed, and she certainly is a great therapist.

Dolly and I ready to go for a ride.

I’m on a new horsey journey, and it feels good.  Learning all about harnesses and carts and how they work… I have now purchased all the components I need and I am in the process of getting them all in one place and hooked together.  Wish me luck!!

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Love this story and the photos; makes me cry! ( I remember my Shetland pony, Princess). Glad to hear your back in the saddle! Enjoy your blogs!

  2. Good for you to get back at it! A new adventure…or one revisited is such an awesome thing. You have such great photos and I love to hear your memories of your old four legged friends.

  3. Posted by Mike U. on September 2, 2010 at 4:17 am

    Glad too see you with a horse again.

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