girls and horses


my daughter, Izzi, started to show signs at the age of 5.   after much discussion, interrogation, deliberation and conversation... we realized the inevitable. our daughter was legitimately horse crazy.  like, serious. so i began taking her to a lesson once a week.  that went well. adorably well, actually.  the cutest thing ever in her pink boots and helmet.  until one day...when she fell off.  this was not a pony-height she fell from either, this was full grown, big horse height.  she got right back on, after some cuddling and clean-up...that's what real cowgirls do, by the way.  she even finished out her few lessons she had left over the following couple of weeks.

izzi on her very first ride {w/ her big brother}
and then, when it came time to renew our commitment and sign up again...she was done. just like that.  from horse-crazy to nuthin.  my mother-in-love (some people say mother-in-law, i'm not one of them) gave me some great advice. and since she herself was an avid horse woman from a young age (Izzi has photos in her room of her grandma on her own horse as a young girl in the 50's) i trusted her implicitly. she said: until she can't sleep because all she can think or dream or talk about is horses, don't force the issue.  see, i was a fraidy cat.  yeah, a full-blown, bona fide,  scaredy pants...when it came to horses anyway.  and i loved watching Izzi's fearless smile when she rode that ol' lesson horse.  i was inspired and moved and, well, lived vicariously through her.  i somehow imagined myself unafraid on a horse when i watched her.  what i didn't realize at the time was that a dream was stirring in me.
izzi and her auntie Kristy 

and of course, inevitably the dream came to life in her again too.  boy...like a wild-fire!  once it sparked again, at age 7, we were done for.   we did pony parties, more lessons, a mother-daughter-cowgirl-bootcamp, and, eventually, bought one of ou