I am a cowboy. Seems fitting that I should have horses.
They're my livelihood. I make sure they have all they can possibly need, that they're properly taken care of. I have a herd of about fifty (though I hope to add to that number when the males mate with the females).
I love my horses. They're thoroughbreds and quarter horses.
Been around them my life. My papa, he was a cowboy. So was his father and HIS father's father. It's part of who we Bransoms are.
My wife loves horses too. So do my kids. In fact, Kata (wife) helps me with feeding them, watering them, giving them lots of extra love and attention and caring for them if they're expecting babies or sick.
If they're real bad sick, to the point of where they need emergency care, then our trusty equine veterinarian is called to deal with the more serious problems.
The older kids (Karstyn, Kimerly, and Karter) help Kata with the horses if they don't have homework or school. One day our second youngest Kennedi will join them; right now she's still too young. She's only in kindergarten, a tiny peanut of a thing.
We have one more child: a little boy, Kolton, barely two. He has Down syndrome. It isn't known whether he will be able to help out because he has heart and other health issues.
While Kata and the three older kids help me out, my mamma Glenda stays in with Kennedi and Kolton. She takes exceptionally good care of them and knows what to do if Kolton has a problem; it gives Kata and I peace of mind to know that our two babies are safe with a trusted adult, none other than their precious granny.
Every summer, around fair time, we take some of the horses to show. It is always a thrill whenever one of them wins a ribbon or trophy. It shows that we must be doing something right.
In the winter, when it is cold and snowy, we do let them out for excercise, but they mainly stay in their pens at the horse barns we have in our yard, where they are given extra fruit, vegetables, and hay, not to mention fresh water every day.
We take great pride in each and every one of our horses. We cannot imagine our life without them. We love to ride them as much as we do caring for them: to me, my wife, and the three older kids, there is no greater thrill than having the wind rush past your face or in your hair!
Kennedi has experienced this as well and she loves it: she is a natural rider. A future cowgirl for certain! It is unknown at this time whether little Kolt will follow suit, but I am hoping he does. He loves looking at pictures of horses in picture books and loves petting them when we take him to see them.
Well, it's about time to feed the herd and muck out their stalls. The wife and kids will help before we head out for church services.
We go to a cowboy church with some of the other ranch hands. It's not too far from our place. Take care and God bless!
~Canyon Terwilliger, Boseman, Montana.