A couple months ago, my mom had the opportunity to work on some horses that included Pansy the pony. The owner was commenting on how much Pansy loves kids - and how much she wished for a child to be able to ride/exercise her - as Pansy really isn't one for being ridden - or even lunged, by adults. (Oh yes, horses most definitely have personalities).
The owner proceeded to say that she had actually allowed Camp Harlow to have Pansy for the summer so she could be surrounded by lots and lots of little kiddos who were overjoyed to sit atop a horse. And, what do you know, but one of those little kiddos was Miss Mikayla. And what do you know, but she just happens to be the granddaughter or the person working on this little pony - and hence, an idea was born to bring the two of these eager partners together.
Today was the day. Mom came with us, as she will do from time to time - especially these initial visits. Tamara, the owner, offered to let us ride Pansy free if we were willing to groom and tack her. Well, of course! We taught Mikayla how to brush her, how to pick out her hooves, how to brush her mane and tail. And, then we had a little lesson with Mikayla.
It cracked me up because the whole time I walked around the arena with the two of them, holding a lead line close, (just in case) - I felt like Pansy was exasperated with me. Truly, her body language communicated, "Just let me be with the little girl - I'll take care of her, I promise...." Eventually we did let them both go on their own, and they did great. However, Mikayla (just like soccer), does need to work on just a tad more assertiveness.
I think the two of them definitely bonded. We're hoping to make this an (at least) twice a month activity. It's a considerable drive out there, otherwise I'd aim for once a week. But, what a treasure and a blessing to get this opportunity!