The weather was a perfect, the sun was out, and the kids were so excited to be at the Ranch.
First, the children were given special, decorated, birthday helmets, and then they sat down for a lesson.
Here Chloe sits with the boys while they learn about horses and horse safety.
And, then Cam's former teacher, Miss V, showed up and she may as well have been Justin Bieber in a room full of 12 year old girls, because all of the children flocked to her and screamed. Only Rapunzel herself could have garnered a better welcoming.
After the safety lesson we took the party in to the stable, where Chloe and I paused for this photo with Cassandra, who was wise enough to bring a beer to the party. There was a point where I wished I was drinking so that my anxiety level would have lessened...more on that later.
They assigned the 14 children to 5 different horses and let them decorate them. Okay, the kids didn't get to help too much with the decorating since they were only 3-5 years old and couldn't even reach the horses, but they got to dictate which decorations went where and had fun dressing the horsies up for the party.
Meet Cam's horse, Daisy. Cam chose these decorations. I can honestly say I've never seen a horse sport scrunchies before. It's a good look on her. Cam chose this horse out of the bunch because she really liked her name. She got to ride on her the entire time while the other children took turns on the other four horses.
Then the kids helped lead the decorated horses out to the arena. With some major assistance, Cam was saddled up on Daisy. Cam was not on Daisy's back for more than 10 seconds when the horse became startled and started to skirt around and buck up her hind legs. I was certain Cam would fall off. Hello anxiety nice to feel you again. But, this fearless and strong child of mine, held on for deal life, said "Whoa Daisy," and with the help of her trainer, the horse calmed down and was fine the rest of the day. I, however, was not. There was this fear that loomed over me for the remainder of the party that somebody would get hurt, and thus my desire for a glass of wine to calm the nerves. Luckily, that didn't happen (Praise Jesus). This incident did not phase Camdyn in the slightest. She loved that horse, she rode that horse for the rest of the party, and can't wait to ride again.
Speaking of being proud, there were several children that conquered huge fears that day. I had several mom's say to me in the stable, "I don't think my child is going to do this." To which I responded, "That's okay, they can still watch and have a good time. No worries." All 14 kids rode a horse, and the only tears that were shed were of the "I don't want to get off the horse" variety.
To take my mind off of the incident with Daisy, I decided to pick up Chloe and take her to the other arena where the children were brushing and leading Miniature Horses. Chloe and I had fun finding horse poop. Yeah, sounds great, doesn't it? She would say "Mo Horse Poop" and we would hunt for droppings in the sand. A drink would have been better, but the poop distraction served its purpose.
Then, the kids played relay games with the horses. They separated in to two teams, with one horse on each team. They raced the horses from one side of the arena to the other and then the rider tried to eat a gummy worm off of a plate filled with whipped cream, and then they raced back. Did I mention they let the kids trot the horses...FUN! The pictures of the kids are hilarious. Cam wouldn't stick her face in the whip cream, but here she is eating her gummy worm.
Here a few of the kids wait their turn.
Then, they paused for a few pictures with the Nay Nays before it was time for cake. Don't they look so tiny compared to the horses?
Then, it was time for cake. And, finally my turn to breathe a sigh of relief, no one was injured. Everyone had a great time. The anxiety ridden part of the party is over!
Camdyn chose a My Little Pony cake and it was delicious.
We thanked our guests for coming and sent each child home with a horse figurine to play with and a box of crayons.
The party was a success. All the children seemed to enjoy themselves and it definitely was a memorable day at the Ranch.