I Can Learn a Thing or Two…

The sun began to peek up over the hill that sits behind our house, and through Mattson’s bedroom window. He jumped up out of bed, with a smile on his face. This was the day that Mattson had worked all summer for—the 4-H horse show! As he catches his horse, I load the truck with the necessities—water, sunscreen, and of course, a comfy lawn chair that I can take a short, much needed nap in when the excitement of a horse show is too much to bare. As I look in the tack room of the trailer, I am pleased and proud of the organization Mattson has on display. Bridles hung neatly, saddle clean and oiled, floor swept and the water bucket and grain ready for reward for a job well done. I can learn a thing or two about his idea of being tidy and neat.

We pull into the arena, parked our truck and trailer next to the neighborhood girl and unload a blue roan gelding who is truly a part of our family. He goes by the name “Cody.” The sun blazing down on us all, I paint the hooves, brush the main and tail and pin the back number on Mattson’s freshly ironed shirt. The new halter is put on and they begin to show in their first class. Calm and collected, in all his classes, he shows his horse like a true champion. He teaching us the importance of having fun, having confidence, and being proud of who he is and what he has. I can learn a thing or two about his discipline and confidence to tackle everyday life.

As the day goes on it continues to get longer, hotter and dustier. Patience is tested, horses are ridden in patterns and parents are smiling as their child rides out of the arena with a red, white or blue ribbon. I remind Mattson to hold his reins steady, sit deep in the saddle, and make sure his horse picks up his correct lead. He reassures me with a smile and a wink, and tells me to relax. I once again am more nervous than he is.  teamsortingteamsortingwinners

His favorite event has finally come—Team Sorting! Mattson is a member of the team who won the county fair and went on to win the State Fair last year. The cows are placed in the lower end of the arena. Mattson and his team members ride in, cinches tightened, and horses’ ears perked up. The team consists of three ranch raised cow kids who have sorted a cow or two before in their time. They begin to ride toward the cows, getting them sorted in order, one by one, with a total of 5. After the dust is settled, and the numbers are tallied, their team is the county fair champion once again. Mattson congratulates his team and the other teams as well. They are excited to compete at state once again. I can learn a thing or two about his sportsmanship in 4-H as well as life itself.

Now we get ready for State Fair……

~ Jayme

Jayme Thompson lives in Shelley, Idaho, with her husband Matt, and their three sons, Jackson, Mattson and Dawson. She was daddy’s little cowgirl being raised horseback on the family cattle ranch in Mackay, Idaho. Matt and Jayme have known each other since their early junior rodeo days. They are both 4th generation ranchers and have a cow-calf and horse operation. Jayme drives school bus, and helps Matt on the ranch in addition to chauffeuring kids. Matt is a custom saddle maker and a video representative for Western Video Market on the side.

Jayme also blogs at Cavvy Savvy, where this post first appeared.

Categories: Blogging, Idaho Cattlewomen, Ranch kids, Ranch Life