This summer I found the most amazing place. It's called Once Upon a Horse. Once Upon a Horse offers horseback riding lessons for kids and adults, play-days, camps, and parties! Such fun! Ronan went through a stage where he was really into all things farm and he loves what he calls "horthes." So when I saw the listing in my parks and recreation catalog I instantly signed Ronan up for a class called "You and Me and Pony Makes Three." The class is designed for kids ages 2-5 with parent participation.
We drove out into the country on a bright and clear summer morning and were met at the barn door by teacher Susie who greeted us with a big smile, her charm instantly dissolving Ronan's apprehension. He has a tendency to be really shy in new situation. We were invited into the barn where Susie read the children a book all about horses. She gave the kids simple directions on how to be safe around horses and how to groom and feed them. Then the kids got to try it out for themselves. Ronan just loved brushing the horse with the bristle brush. He was concentrating so hard on the strokes with a furrowed brow.
After grooming, it was time to ride! Ronan was VERY nervous about this and at first he just wanted to hold teacher Susie's hand and lead the horse around the paddock. He really took to Susie! Just walked right up to her and took her hand. In the end, I was able to get him up onto the horse and he did a lap, with the caveat that I had to walk alongside and hold onto him. But HE DID IT! I was very proud of my kiddo. And didn't he just look adorable in that riding helmet? Aawww! Afterward he got to feed his "horth" a carrot and check out all the other sights and smells of the barnyard. I highly recommend taking your kids for a visit if you are ever in the Portland metro area.
Ronan's favorite activities of the day were:
- brushing the horse
- stick pony riding
- barnyard stinky poop "inky oop" piles