Sunday, August 11, 2013

Extra curricular

Sometimes I feel a bit guilty that my kids don't have music-dancing-any sort of sport they so desire activities to fulfil and enrich their lives out of school hours. Mind you, I can barely keep up with school let alone anything extra, however, the thought occasionally crosses my mind (even if all of the above were readily available).

And then, they have a weekend like one not far back, where mother does 240km of driving and much effort is applied, so they can have a little droving experience.

Horses were fetched, saddles dusted off, and all of the cracks were gathered to the fray to move a HUGE mob of weaners from the dip yard to a property about 15 kms out of town. It was a co-ordinated, collaborative effort; helping out the dad of the pesky spare kid.

IMG_5110 IMG_5109

That there chestnut pony that Georgie is on belied the dry season we are having, behaving in a very unbecoming, Curio like manner upon saddling. Luckily I had found a strapping teenage boy to "buck him out", with Chester using all of his best moves before anyone's bum hit the saddle. He (thankfully) did not set a foot wrong for the rest of the day.


The mob of weaners was wild and dangerous, but thanks to the skilled team of workers, they managed to keep them under control.

IMG_5129 Yes, seven riders on horseback, two on a four wheeler (me and my boy: we are sort of a horse short, as well as transportation means that can move more than two at a time - that mum can drive without a nervous twitch and one that doesn't also give dad reason to fret about his gearbox). And also along behind, a toyota containing essential supplies, and the baby of the pink shirted rider on far right. And its granny too of course.

Such a quiet slow ride is perfect for young horses needing some miles under their feet, and sweaty saddlecloth on their back, so apart from the kids, the others jumped at the opportunity. Its also a great chance for young riders to hone their skills in horse and cattle handling. Or not. A fair bit of yapping happened too.

IMG_5160 Also a chance for me to wield camera with gay abandon, as I wasn't exactly run off my four wheels keeping weaners in check. Such gems as these came off the memory card... one with such LOVELY hands (lordy, what do I DO with this child?!) and the other, look mum no hands at all?!! Spare kid maintaining the halo and fluttering wings by the looks.


About thirteen years ago, when he was showing a LOT less grey hair (one child said "you look like Noah!")  this bloke took my husband (not at the time) on a droving trip (of far longer duration and distance). It was also much greener of grass in those days.


Angus also got to have a ride, kicking big sister off her horse and onto the bike. Old Benny the horse, is well aware of Angus's skills (or lack thereof) and had to have lead rope applied.

The kids rode about 10kms that day. I loaded the horses back onto the flat 2/3 away along, as running out of day we needed to return them to their paddock and get home in time to prepare for a BBQ.

Suffice to say the kids slept well that night. And that little thought about extra curricular activities got kicked into the dust. Life lessons are even better, are they not?


  1. To me, it looks as though they are learning valuable skills of team work and cooperation through that activity and that's pretty much what sports do as well ... just in a different format as is available and appropriate for where you live.

    On the flip side, I worry that our city based kids don't get enough opportunities to roam and have adventures ... there is more structure but the whole 'stranger danger' thing, while real and sometimes frightening, diminishes their chance to learn through healthy and safe 'mistakes' if you get what I mean??

  2. Well that certainly is one HUGE mob of wild and dangerous looking critters ... though the cattle look very well behaved!
    Love the no hands trick ... how many times do you have to tell them that it doesn't matter how quiet the horse is, you still treat them all the same. As Matthew's fond of telling them "A horse always kicks, a dog always bites and a gun is always loaded".
    We don't do soccer/tap/swimming/ballet/cricket either, and I'm quite okay with that, I burn enough rubber as it is.
    Is that Billy in the photo?
    Matthew said he couldn't recognise him looking so old, with his shirt on, not looking at his shadow?!? (You had to be there I guess).
    Have a great week.

  3. ... And love the header by the way.

  4. Our after school activities are very similar. I've had the extra curricular guilt pop in here as well but Tess turned out OK!

  5. And I'm with Fiona, love the header and blog layout......

  6. What fabulous photos!!!!! That looks like a great extra curricular activity for the kids ... and the family ... especially the camera wielding members.

  7. Ah, but your children are learning so many skills that will stand them in such good stead. Here, all that riding would be seen as such a luxury hobby so these things are relative! I am just thinking of all the people skills they are learning too ... And the ones about self reliance ... Shall I send you a list? :)

  8. Looks like fun was had and I always get a giggle out of your posts..."look no hands". Extra curricular is just a fancy word for everything else our kids learn...its not like they are parked up at home all of the time. You are making memories for them!

  9. I'm guessing you and Fiona are neighbours (albeit thousands of kilometres apart)??? I love reading TRUE Aussie tales,so I'll be back. Your kids are blessed, no amount of ballet or dance could replicate the life your kids are having.
    Liv xo
    ps: thanks for popping over to me today x


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