I had a lot of fun shopping for “Toys for Tots.” Maybe a little too much fun, even though I did so-called “smart shopping.”
What you see is, maybe, a tenth of the haul, all that’s on-topic for our interests here.
Anyway, when I showed some of the goodies to my husband, he spotted stuffed horses among the lions and tigers and trucks.
“Building more blog readers?”
“Yeah,” I said with brio worthy of Bugs Bunny. “Pushing my equestrian agenda.”
Then, I added, “There’s always one for whom that will mean everything.”
That child – usually a she, but sometimes a he – is often on my mind because I used to be one of them. No surprise, right?
Girls have the reputation of loving horses and ponies, so much so that it’s become a stereotype.
People also forget boys out there adore horses, too. Just like girls like superheroes, too, (preach it, Riley), and boys want cooking toys that aren’t pink.
Many children, as the saying goes, “grow out of” horses, but I believe young people move on because their love for horses isn’t nurtured by their environment, both due to lack of understanding and, well, finances.
To paraphrase Auntie Mame, life is a banquet, but you still have to pay the cashier.
The fees associated with horses, even when you keep costs down, add up over time, yet middle class people I know do it. They prioritize.
They forego vacations away, drive older cars, watch for sales of things they need and wear older clothes year after year. Others don’t own a horse but take lessons themselves or send a child,. Perhaps they cut costs by just taking lessons or half-leasing a horse or by riding but not showing. Or, if they don’t ride anymore, they volunteer at a rescue or a therapeutic riding stable. Maybe all they do is take in the midway pony ride attraction at a carnival or just spend a day as a spectator at a nearby equestrian event.
FWIW, I got crazy-stupid bargains on the horse toys you see above.
To someone in your life, a gift that speaks to their passion may mean everything. That someone may even be you.
Did you have a horse toy when you were a child? Or did you have a pony? (It’s okay. We might feel jealous for a moment, but it’ll pass. Do you remember who first acknowledged horses were important to you? Let us know in the comments. Thanks!
Also, there’s still time to donate cash or a toy to Toys for Tots, a year-round organization.