Last month we had the opportunity to help out some neighbors and horse-sit for them a couple weeks. They had purchased a pony for their daughter's birthday and needed a place to hide him until the big day. Our kids were very eager to offer our pasture as the ideal hiding spot.
Sarah was tickled pink at the chance to keep a pony for a bit, and she was very diligent in feeding and brushing him every day. She wants so badly to own a horse of her own, and she considered it a privilege to pretend he was hers.
He was a retired carnival ride pony- and was very gentle with our kids. They loved to take him bits of carrot or apple. He was a popular creature on the farm, even though the goats were convinced he was a terrible monster and wouldn't come near him.
The children spent many hours outside in the pasture each day, playing with Carnie. They loved to brush his hair or braid his tail.
They also loved just Being around him, watching him graze or exploring the pasture together. I managed to snatch a bit of time between commitments to sneak outside with my camera on one such day. Matthew was enjoying a quiet afternoon in the winter sun with Carnie.
Carnie was happy to slowly wander through our yard, grazing on new grass. Matthew was happy to follow along and just talk to the pony.
I love these little magical moments, when my children get to commune with nature. I really believe it feeds our souls to spend time with plants and animals, and I'm so thankful we have the chance to give our children this type of childhood. It may be a simple country life, but it's a life full of joy.