Looking Back: Part 2

Reader Contribution by Nancy Addie
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After a few months of being farmers and getting the llama experience we, or shall I say I, decided it was time to add to our family of animals. You know us women, we all want a horse. It is every little girl’s dream to have a horse, white and powerful who eats carrots out of your hand and tramples deadly snakes to save your life! My dream horse was named Snowfire after a 1960s era TV show. So, of course, I wanted a similarly white and majestic horse!

I got on the Internet one night after causally mentioning to Chad about “horses, farm, more fun, how about it, etc.” Before he could answer, I already had four sheets printed out of who had horses and where within 500 miles! I narrowed it down to 10 miles and found a cute little place in the country called, Knapp Mini Horses. We visited Lisa and her prize horses. She had every size, shape and color. I saw my white horse off in the distance and beelined to her. She wasn’t a ‘real’ horse as her head came just past my waist and had a little gray mixed in. Also, her name was Sparky and, we would later find out, there was good reason for that. I nuzzled her nose and made up my mind that Sparky was going to be mine!

Now we needed another horse because, according to the always-truthful Internet, they do better in pairs. We found Laci off by herself eating, which we later discovered she does best, non-stop, like a lawnmower on perpetual autopilot. She was brown with a golden mane and, best of all, she was with foal. Two horses for the price of one, we (or I) reasoned! Laci reminded me of a Walmart greeter so I thought she would be great with little kids when they petted her in undeterred munch. We went into dickering mode with the seller and agreed on a price. I was a few hundred dollars short. Lisa offered to let us put them on ‘lay-a-way’. So, for two months, I paid on my horsey-lay-away and got our barn ready for the new family members.

I had a talk with the llamas assuring them that the new horses were not as important as they were and that Mommy would still love them the most! They heard me without listening, blinking as they stared into space while my ‘Charlie brown teacher voice’ went over and around them. Soon, the day came when my little girl dream became a reality! Lisa dropped off my horses and gave us a small booklet on, yes that’s right, the ‘do’s and don’ts for mini horses’. Like before with the “llama manual’, I scanned it, under lined the important stuff and handed it to Chad. He responded much the same as before and had set the book aside as soon as I lifted my pointing finger from the page.

We introduced the animals and the llamas ran out of the barn into the pasture as the horses bee-lined it to the fresh hay. Yep, it was going to work out nice. We had two llamas and two mini horses with a foal on the way! The four were easy to take care of and gave us hours of entertainment and enjoyment. Well, easy and entertaining for me anyway. Super Farmer Chad now had barn duties that he didn’t count on, like mucking the barn, feeding animals in 20-below blizzards, and chasing horses back into their side of the field or off the road after knocking down the fence. What could be better? Maybe a goat or two? Or, three dozen chickens? Why not add a few … dozen bunnies? A ferret? And, of course one has to have a barn kitty or three to keep out riff raff.

Photo: iStockphoto.com/simplytheyu

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