Monday, October 25, 2010

The Day of My Farmer and Horse.

 What a beautiful weekend!
I hope you had one as nice.

 We went to my in-laws' house and visited with an aunt who lives in another state;
she comes down to visit once a year.

The kids love Granddad and Grandmom's.  My Farmer's sister and her bunch all live upstairs and the Grands live in the basement apartment.  It's a beautiful place and they have chickens, goats, Icelandic sheep, alpacas, cats, bunnies, horses, guineas, a ferret, a chinchilla, a giraffe and an elephant.

Okay, all but the giraffe and elephant.
But maybe one of these days.

Oh, and this:

It's our mini-horse Misty.
I love her and miss her.

Violet and I pooled our hard-earned allowance together and bought her this past spring after we'd looked at numerous minis.  She pulls a cart, which is what I wanted her for.

 Isn't this great?  I love having a horse that pulls a wagon.  And she's super strong!

There's just one thing that is missing from this picture.

Something you cannot see very well.

It's the panic in my face,
the sweat on my palms,
the shaking of my legs.

You see, Misty is fast.
She thinks she's a racehorse.

When we bought her from the Amish man, she wanted to go, but I just thought...
Well, I don't know what I thought.  I guess I thought she just had energy,
which is a great thing for hauling my plants up to my roadside stand,

but I want my plants to arrive still in the pots.

The first time I hitched her up to the cart,
(which in itself was an ordeal because there are 250 straps that go into pulling a cart and I'd only had a short lesson in how to attach them all)
I got into the cart, and
remembering all the Western movies I'd loved growing up,
swatted the reins on her little black bottom,

and almost instantly did a back flip into the back seat when she SPRINTED into top speed.

The only thing I remember seeing, as I tried to collect myself back onto the seat,
was my Farmer's eyes:


The kind that makes the eyeballs grow in size.


Was all I heard him say,

but no matter how I pulled back, she wasn't stopping
and we were flying!

We were headed up the driveway toward the street
and I could just hear my husband repeating the command he gave,
as if I hadn't heard it the first time.

The only solution I saw coming was to let her run it out until we stopped somewhere miles away and hoped I'd know where I was.

But I suddenly saw another option as we came quickly toward the barn,
and that was to head her toward the closed door of the barn.
I did that
and all was well,
at least until my Farmer and I caught our breaths,
and we turned her about for round 2:

10 laps around the pond, til she finally calmed some and agreed to give in to my command to walk.

I knew this tiny horse was not going to work for my inexperienced daughter.

But I grew up at a camp with horses and worked with a few of them and helped tame them,
so I knew I could work with Misty and in a few years, I'd have her doing what I wanted.
I just didn't know what to do about Violet.  After all, this was her horse, too, and she wanted to ride.

And I wanted her to stay alive.

Besides that, as much as I wanted to spend time and train Misty, I had a big obstacle:

This baby is a little time consuming,
and she was even more so when we first got Misty.

Her nap-time was hard to spend on training a horse when it was springtime
and I had a million other things that HAD to get done.

Oh, yes, and the guy here on the slide.
  In this picture you miss the 5 seconds preceding this where we were coming down the driveway at a fearsome speed,
and I could see my little man perched

I didn't want to see him in the pathway of my racing beast.

So my sister-in-law allowed her two teenage girls to swap Misty for

good old Jake.
He's the sweetest old donkey and perfect learning experience for my young crew.

Still, I miss Misty and look forward to the day when she's a mite bit calmer.
My nieces are doing an excellent job with her and I know she's much better off with them for a few years.

Be good to my nieces, Misty.
You give me a good laugh about it now,
but you certainly didn't help my Farmer's stress level that day.

Please join the fun over at:


  1. Great story! Love the little cart. I had a miniature horse once also. Onery!

  2. I loved this story and photos. My brother has a little horse that pulls a cart. His name is Special Ed (my brother is a school psychologist)

  3. Just wanted to say I've enjoyed browsing your blog this morning! I'm a painter, too, of sorts. ;) It's been a while and not something I do all the time, since most of my art now days is done on the computer. Your farmhouse is lovely and so is your family!

  4. My husband's Grandmother has cart pulling horses! They are a lot of fun! We enjoy buggy rides every now and then. The last one I went on was about 4 years ago. I think it's time for another one. :)

  5. Thank you for all the comments. It's great to know I'm in good company! Yes, Michaele, ornery indeed! I think Misty has a pretty pleasant personality though, I hope. She's only 4 so I'm hoping she'll lose some of her energy. But I have met some ornery ones!
    What a fun name, Laraine! Made me laugh! Mr. Ed was fun, I bet Special Ed is, too! :)
    Thanks so much heartofacountryhome. :) I don't do nearly enough painting these days because I find great fun in blogging and reading others blogs. I do a little when I can. Thanks for stopping in!
    Yes, Angie, it's the perfect time of year for buggy rides. The leaves are amazing here right now! Gotta get to it before the snow comes! :)

  6. Oh, my sides are aching from laughing...only because I have been there! 'Misty' is a team of Haflingers, which I bought from the Amish. They, too, have a bunch of energy and move into hyperdrive far too quickly for my brain to connect. I recognize that fear...and the shaking legs, for I have been there as well!

  7. What a great story. Family is always nice to visit. This is so funny love the cart. B

  8. poor misty was only doing what the amish man taught her and probably was punished had she not gone fast which is a complete shame. we have amish friends but as a whole, i do not think they are kind to their animals and see horses as machines. and when you pulled back, that was sure not fun for her mouth as i can see it hanging open in your pic. it is a shame the amish man didn't take the time needed to show you how to drive with her and work with her speed until you felt in control. your donkey looks lovely and i am glad he is working out for you. i just hope the nieces will take the time to learn with misty and she doesn't get passed from farm to farm.

  9. Looks like a very nice fun weekend :)

  10. Thanks for your fun comments. Yes, Misty was a learning experience, but I fully intend on getting her back and training her properly. I was working with the lead line with her to get more control, but just didn't feel I could devote the time needed to her. My nieces are excellent at training and have taken lessons on horses. They have been using a halter on her with the knots in it (pressure point control) and to ride her with as well. This seems to be much better on her mouth and they have done incredibly at loving and calming her down and getting really good control of her. My story was meant to be humorous, a lesson for us both, and I didn't mean to insinuate that our animals are mistreated at all, which is why I sacrificed to let her move off our farm where she would get better love and care at this point in life. I really love my horse, wanted one since I was 6 years old. Misty was a dream come true for me, even if she is just a mite thing, I believe animals are better off being taken care of where it is better for them than letting her run wild and untrained here.

  11. Sweet. Driving horses can be scary. They are either great or not safe. I have one that is not safe.

  12. That is amazing! I would have likely jumped out of the cart :) LOL I would love to have my donkeys pull a cart. Where did you get that one? It’s so great and just the size I would want. I just love this post--it’s great. Thanks for sharing with Farm Friend Friday :)
    Hugs, Amy

  13. I found you through Farm Friday.

    I use to raise miniature horses but now have four big horses.

    Your pictures are wonderful.

    I was right there with you on that scary ride!


I love your comments!