Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Looking at the Future

For the first time that I can recall, we are a one-horse family.

I find myself questioning getting more horses.  There is a cost to having a little herd of horses (duh). I've budgeted and planned in order to have (purchased and rescued) horses - making sure their health, feed and living conditions were always the best that I could provide.

But in doing so I've had to pass on other items here that need attention - like replacing old furniture, carpet, etc.  I guess it comes down to what one's priorities are and I guess right now as I approach my 61st birthday, I'm revisiting mine.

The fact is, I'm the only one in the family who rides and I have come to realize that I don't ride as often as I used to.

I had grand plans a few years ago of having two good riding horses.  I found Poco (on the left), one of the most steady/eddy, well broke horses I've ever owned.  He joined Bob here at home.  They got along great.

I called my friends, "Come ride with me!"  I was surprised to find everybody was busy doing something else.  Nobody was interested in joining me.  Nobody ever came out to experience a great ride on Sweet Poco.

I asked my family.  Same situation.  Although they enjoy the horses, neither of them was interested in joining me on a ride.

So I rode Poco.

And I rode Bob.

I even rode our "ornamental" Belgian Draft, Bear.

I hauled places.

And I boarded.

But these days I find myself not willing to ride at home alone, not enjoying riding in 80+ temps (which we've had a lot of), not wanting to expend the resources to join in some of the Cowgirl games that I have in the past.  These days I find myself busy and choosing other priorities besides riding.

I think I need a "jump start" of my battery!  I have one of the most talented, best trained, sweetest horses out in my pasture.  I have five acres of rolling pastures.  I guess I wish more than anything I had someone here to ride with.

My husband has mentioned "down the road" he might like to ride again and has also talked about taking some lessons.  If that should happen I'm thinking lessons on Elvis would be a good way to start for him.  But I don't think this constitutes getting another horse right now.  We can share Elvis and if husband decides he wants to pursue riding further, we can re-visit another horse at that time.

What about you?  Do you find as you get older that your priorities are different?
What do you do to keep motivated?  I'd sure love to hear from you on this subject.


  1. For the first time in many years, I find myself with only one horse. I have been looking for another horse, but nothing was suitable in the age range and breed that I want, so I am going to wait until spring.

    I find myself liking my additional time during the week when I am working, yet missing the second horse on the weekends. I like how much money I am saving--a lot. I do have either my boyfriend or my sister to ride with most of the time--and it's great fun. I could understand how you miss having company.

    I see the advantages and disadvantages of one horse or two, and I bounce between the both options all the time. For now, I will just procrastinate.

    I do plan to retire in a couple of years, and I will have more time for the second horse, then. Sometimes I wonder if I should just wait...

  2. Yes, my priorities have changed as I've gotten older. I care much less about material things and more about living my dream - which includes horses. Not that house repairs are materialist, but in the general sense. Dreams can change, and only you know what/when it's right for you. It makes a big difference to have someone to ride and share your interests with. I know many riders do just fine on there own, and even prefer it, but it's not for me. If my situation were to change, for motivation I think I would seek out a local group/barn of others with similar interests (kinda like your Cowgirl group). I know it's much easier said then done. Have you considered "boarding" a horse from a reliable source, or getting something other then a horse, so Elvis has a buddy? I know that can be complicated, just a thought. Best sincere wishes as you continue to heal from losing Bob & sorting things out.

  3. It is so difficult to be motivated in the summer! I find the temperatures suck the life out of me and being in the sun and flies does nothing for me.

    I actually took up riding so that I would have something to do in retirement, so my focus has been on that. I am looking forward to when I can ride whenever I want to. :-) I am the type of person that needs to be pushed, however. I find boarding does that for me. There's a social aspect, so you meet up with riding buddies. And being with other riders pushes me outside of my comfort level.

    Extreme Cowboy is becoming very popular in my area. The obstacles are easy to make and it's a lot of fun. I know people who have set a course up in one of their paddocks at home (we have one where I board also).

    Perhaps just being around your horse is all you need right now. Your life is busy and just being around horses can be magic.

  4. I found when I had children I became more concerned for my own safety so calmer horses were a plus. But I wanted something good for them to ride so I ended up doing a lot of training so they would be safe. I'm lucky that my husband enjoys riding too. Although he doesn't like to show he does like trail riding and competing in endurance riding. Having a goal such as the next endurance ride had been good motivation for both of us.

  5. I feel you on the no one to ride with thing... it's no fun at all and makes it VERY hard to stay motivated. I have a dressage barn I could haul to, but I can't drive the truck (standard) and hauling horses in trailers makes me irrationally scared. So I feel stuck. Not a good feeling. Don't give up though. Maybe your husband will get back to riding with you. :)

  6. Well....I have ONE HORSE. Two horses are just to much for me. As much as I would love to have two horses, because I have a grandson that is up and coming. So, I did not want Libby to be alone. I got a donkey to keep her company. That donkey and Libby bonded. Yes they did. But that Donkey was lonely too. Donkey's need to be in a pairs. SO I got another donkey. He bonded with Libby. My first donkey was still out in the cold. So I found a mini! and Her and Star are now BUDDIES! So I have one Horse and three donkeys. Two donkeys equals about ONE horse in care and most expenses. They are MY PASTURE THERAPY when I can't ride. I will NEVER give LIBBY up! Even if I can't ride. She is there. I CAN/COULD ride her at any time! We are growing old together. Even if you don't ride the best horse on the earth, doesn't mean you still can not enjoy them.

    Oh, AND...I was like you, it is more fun to ride with someone, but when it came down to it, no one was ever available! So all my dreams of having fun with horses fizzled up. But Libby and I have fun! I keep my weekly riding lesson because it forces me to take her out and ride each week. Keeps us in tune, and I so enjoy my hour each week.

    So your dreams may have changed but the path remains the same!