My grandchildren are all smart, of course they are, they are my grandchildren. Each of them possesses some unique traits, is clever and intelligent. Jordyn as the oldest has been called smart the longest, Riley and Lexi clearly are as well and little Kendyll is definitely hearing it a lot these days.
Based on that, it didn’t take Jordyn long, hanging out at Granny’s farm and around the new riders there to figure out something was new wit the horses. Both riders, Isabel and Mia, lease their horses, they do not own them. In a situation much like a long-term rental agreement, people with a horse they are not currently riding or using, look for a rider with the right skills, to lease the horse for a period of time. I know long-time riders who have never owned a horse. When the lease ends, they re-new it or walk away, none of that pesky have to sell the horse problem.
Likewise, leasing offers a specific type of horse to do exactly what level of riding is desired at that point in time. Mostly, horses do one or two things well. People, especially children, increase their knowledge, skills and abilities. Easier to lease horses with varying abilities than have one unable to do what you want or try to buy and sell the right one at the right time.
Anyway, Jordyn figured out these two riders were leasing their horses and learning to ride. Jordyn has been stymied with the horse riding process. All of us, Lauren, Jordyn’s parents and myself, have alternately encouraged her and admonished her and her riding abilities (or lack thereof). It had gotten to the point she didn’t want to ride at all (which was sad indeed).
Jordyn figured out in her head that if you lease a horse the following happens:
- you get to ride a lot and no one yells at you
- you get to hang out with the other girls at the barn on horseback
- you get to take lessons with Uncle Dev (who has never told you that you must trot)
- it must be better than buying a horse because all the girls are doing it
The other night, Lauren was going out to ride Feather. Jordyn, as always prepared to ride, dressed in her pink breeches, Zoc socks, and paddock boots, even though it was over 90 degrees in the dark of night during summer in Texas, asked if she could ride Mickey. I helped her saddle up. Then she asked if Lauren would help her put a hair-net on and put her hair up in her helmet (that was when I knew she was seriously mimicking the older riders).
As we walked to arena, she announced to Lauren and I that she wanted to lease Mickey. I caught Lauren’s eye and silently begged her not to laugh. Jordyn was dead serious. Of course, the idea makes no sense in our situation. We own Mickey. Jordyn is family. We are not going to make her pay a lease payment for the use of our family horse.
But, Jordyn had thought it all out. She would talk to her parents and they would help her work out a way to pay the monthly amount. Then she told us that if she leased Mickey she could ride all the time with the girls and just get used to being in the saddle (with no pressure was left unsaid). She could take some lessons with Dev and get better at riding. Then she could start doing shows.
Lauren and I jumped on the ‘lease Mickey bandwagon’ quickly. We agreed it was a great plan and would have a good outcome. Jordyn insisted we print out the lease agreement so that she could sign it. She had a good ride with Lauren and Feather. Instead of working on lesson things, I did “Simon Says” and some “Red Light, Green Light” to help her develop skills without stress. I have to say Mickey was an all-star.
That night Lauren dropped Jo off at home and Jordyn immediately went in to tell her mom that they needed $1500 a month (not the real price-not sure where this number came from) to lease Mickey. Ally choked back a gag and inquired as to why they would lease Mickey. Jordyn sold her plan again.
Mickey is now officially being leased by Jordyn. I know many of you wanted him in your own programs but really, family does come first. Since this night when her lease plan was hatched, Jordyn has ridden every day (still wearing the pink breeches-Ally must wash them every night). We have gone down the driveway and down the road. She has ridden with the older kids. She has trotted Mickey on her own. She is working up to her first official lesson.
Kids, especially high achieving kids, have so many demands on them. It is difficult to meet the expectations of parents, grandparents and teachers. Jordyn found her own way to make sense out of the horse world. She saw happy kids riding fun horses and thought she could do what they did. In Jordyn’s brain leasing is a non-stressful approach to riding and I am so happy she initiated it and we took it seriously!