Timmy knows he is one of the greatest blessings in my life. (Photo by Sheila Wolff)

Thanksgiving is a time for reflection and for giving thanks for all the blessings in our lives. While I am lucky to have lots to give thanks for outside of my horse life, I was thinking how much my life has been enriched by having a horse.

Maybe getting my first horse at age 54 had something to do with that. I never took horse ownership for granted. No one gave me a pony when I was young or took me to weekly lessons. I had no “show Mom” to create memories with. I just have 6 years worth of memories I created with Timmy.

As I get older and often forget things that happened years ago (or sometimes last week) maybe it’s a good thing to have more recent experiences to draw upon. In any event, I want to share some things in my horse life that I am thankful for.

First and foremost, I am eternally grateful to have found Timmy….my once in a lifetime, one and only horse. The angels were smiling on me the day I brought him home. He is the perfect match for me and Denis Byrne….thanks for taking a leap of faith and selling him to me. I will never let you down.

I am grateful for having two of the best trainers/coaches a person could ask for. We all look for people who we can understand and connect with…those people who know what they are doing and share their skills so willingly. Thanks Lainey and Maggie for teaching both me and Timmy how to get better at this sport.

Horse ownership would not mean as much if horsey friends didn’t come with it. To that end, thanks to all those people who I have come to lean on, who have shared their knowledge with me, who have cheered us on at shows and clinics, who have showed with me, who have laughed and cried over too many “experiences” to name and even acted interested when “tales of Timmy” were too boring to stand!

Timmy is thankful for a fantastic place to board where the living is easy, the food is good and the company is awesome. Having a great barn family of horses and people just enhances the experience. Thanks Anne and all our No Worries Farm family! Wouldn’t want to do this without you.

I have never really liked shopping, but since I got a horse, that has become one of my favorite activities. There is so much equipment that goes with having a horse.  I have found joy in buying tack, horse blankets, riding clothes, a trailer, horse books and DVD’s, horse jewelry, pictures, more pictures,  supplements, horse treats….the list is endless. Thanks to all those vendors who keep my retirement savings in a constant state of flux.

Competing and showing has had its ups and downs, but I have never had more fun than I have had engaged in this sport of ours. Where else could a 60 year old compete next to a 12 yr old? Or an OTTB hold its own next to a six figure imported horse?  How humbling is it to practice hours on end and know you are ready for a show…only to have your horse decide that maybe that scary flower box is not in a place he wants to go. It has truly been an experience of a lifetime. Thanks to all the farm/venue owners for hosting shows…to all the volunteers who make shows run smoothly…to the competitors for giving us inspiration and incentive and to Timmy for doing his very best 90% of the time. I will give the 10% to your alter-ego the Timminator. Somehow, that doesn’t suppress my will to keep trying.

Lastly, I just have to shout out to some of my favorite things. These are the things I covet and give thanks for all the time:

My custom saddle. The brand doesn’t matter. We all have our favorites, but they will be prying mine out of my cold, dead hands.

Vetrolin. Does anything we put on our horses smell ANY better that Vetrolin!?!?!

Monogrammed saddle pads…for the “Laverne” in all of us.

The carrot ball recipe I found one year. I love making these easy, special treats for Timmy. I feel like Martha Stewart and he (and his pasture buddy) just LOVE them.

Blankets, coolers, sheets, sleazies….endless varieties, colors, styles, patterns. I love them all.

Boyd Martin…OK who among you isn’t thankful he is in the horse world?? Great competitor, winning personality, easy on the eyes (sorry Boyd, had to do it) and all around nice guy.

SMARTPAK!! Who doesn’t love these folks for their products and the best customer service anywhere.

Horse Junkies United and our fearless leader, Patricia. A whopping big THANK YOU for the blogs, contests, stories, interviews, friends of…..all of the people who give back to the horse community EVERY DAY!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!