Every year for Thanksgiving my family drives up from the coast to the northwestern corner of NC. We always have lunch at my uncle's house on Thanksgiving and we stay in town until Sunday afternoon. Since I am a horse fanatic I usually find a little something equine related to do. This year is no different.
Once we arrived at my parents' house Wednesday we ate lunch & then had a walk around the farm to ease our full bellies. The farm is 100 acres and has been passed down through my mother's family for generations. Ninety-six acres of the land are in legal limbo. I own 24 acres but when I inherited it my grandpa didn't specify which plot was mine. He just split the land evenly between 4 grandkids. And a couple of the others can't be made happy with any settlement so it just sits, as is, with the four of us having equal rights to the entire plot.
This year while walking around I was dreaming in my head about what a nice cross country set up I could make on the property. The first photo shows my childhood home to the right and my grandpa's house (now a rental) to the left. I rode this farm daily as a child.
The landscape is mostly large, rolling hills. Lots of wildlife can be seen if you're quiet enough and the wind blows in your favor. We saw two deer on our walk. Also Shiloh can go off leash back here. It's a real treat for him.
Judging by all the tracks in the mud this watering hole is popular with deer. I always brought my horses here to drink during our rides growing up. My first horse layed down here with me on her back once. The creek has a nice sandy bottom. Remove a few stray rocks and it's a great little water crossing just waiting to be cantered.
With some reinforcement this bank is perfect as a multi layer climbing obstacle.
Bank coming out of the creek crossing (watch out Dad!)
Shiloh says "This way mom, let's go this way"
Hill climbing for days! #ponycardio
On Thanksgiving day we had lunch at my uncle's house, like always. Around 35 people show up, it's the same crowd every year. My relatives know how much of a horse girl I am. They always ask how my horse is, and want to see pics. My mom, daughter, and I were the first ones to leave the get together. My husband & dad ended up staying all day, watching football and chatting it up.
On our way home we passed by the old dairy that used to supply milk to all the locals. I swoon over this place. It's one of the original farms in my hometown. Now its a winery. And a horse farm. Whoever rides here has been doing some grid work. A dressage ring is barely noticeable on the other side of the jumps. Razz & I could have so much fun here.
Just before we make it home we stop at my parents' neighbor's house to meet their new burro. This family is so kind, the are a foster home that works with the county animal control. They actually renovated a large room in their house in order to have up to 10 fosters at any given time. The burro was a rescue that they decided to keep. I gave the burro, named Donkey, a few mints and made a new friend. He has only lived here for three months and was just gelded so he's still a little full of himself. His owners were loaded with questions for me about his care since they've never had any equines before. Is his halter too tight? Is he overweight? I'm guessing they forgot to ask the vet these things when he was out.
Friday morning came along and everyone was hanging out in the living room drinking coffee and watching the morning news. No black Friday madness for this crowd. I glance over at my mom, who is sitting in her chair hidden behind the newspaper. Its our local small town newspaper. I mean population maybe 5000 kind of small town. Imagine my surprise when on the front page of that paper I see an article on someone from this tiny town who is an internationally ranked eventer, and the article was about her recent successes and a new horse she is bringing along and did extremely well with at the Retired Racehorse Project "Thoroughbred Makeover". I had no idea that my hometown was also home base for a pro like her. Kudos to her accomplishments.
I did end up going to Tractor Supply around noon to pick up some treats and wrapping paper, I chose 3 different rolls of paper with either horse or vintage cowgirl pin up designs. And I got a new halter. My favorite halter unfortunately went missing, I'm still optimistic it will magically turn up again. But since its gone it gave me the perfect excuse to get the turquoise halter I've wanted but never purchased since it wasn't needed. I take meticulous care of all my stuff and I rarely have to replace any of it.
Saturday me and the hubs piled in the truck along with the dog and went for a hike. We visited a new to us area of Pilot Mountain State Park. Its an annexed site about 20 miles from the main park and runs alongside the Yadkin River. We all had a nice time. I highly recommend visiting if you're in the area. There are horse trails here and a stable close by if you care to hang around overnight. Also close by is the Horne Farm Historical Homestead. It is state maintained as well and serves as an accurate example of a 1900 farm typical to the area. It was here that we met a herd of sheep (and two goats) and a feisty intact donkey. What is it about this trip? Weird that I keep running into the long ear varieties of equines that are just full of themselves.
The sheep were hilarious.
All in all the Thanksgiving was nice. I have a lot of things to be thankful for. Now I'm home and its back to regular day to day. Time to prepare for Christmas also. I will be staying in town for Christmas. It will be nice to have a holiday ride.