Wild West Day – Get a Horse

Let’s say you’ve decided to have Wild West Day.

But you don’t have a horse.

Crisis.

Now, I LOVE horses.  I would love, love, love to have a horse. When I was young, my grandparents had a pony for a short while (my sister, Karen, and I …. um …. lost him for awhile, so it was decided that we might not be ready for the responsibility) ….<sigh>…..

Oh, but look at my outfit. (That’s brother Ralph on the back of the pony).   Look at the curly hair!!  (Did that distract you from my goofy outfit?)

As an adult, I did have a horse for awhile.  His name was Bud.  He was a big brown piece of carpet with 4 legs.

He had lovely eyes.

Unfortunately, he wasn’t saddle broke.  I had worked with horses as a teenager and figured I could handle training Bud, but it turns out you need more than a weekend to make a difference.  I found myself draped across his back on Saturday, saddled up on Sunday and then I had to start all over again the next week.

I know.  Not a great plan.

At any rate, I had NO horse for the kids for Wild West Day.

Here’s the thing.  Don’t underestimate the power of imagination and children’s  ability to create their own wonderful reality.

We made a horse.

Here’s what you need:

  • A horse blanket, or beach towel or Mexican blanket.  Something colorful and fun.
  • A skein of yarn (for the mane and tail)
  • Construction Paper for the ears, mouth, nose and eyes.
  • Sawhorse …. or if you don’t have a saw horse, you can make one.

If you don’t have a sawhorse, you will need:

  • 2 – 8′ lengths of 2″ x 4″ wood
  • 2 saw horse brackets

You might also want something for the kids to use to lasso their horse.  A rope can be dangerous in clever hands, so you might want to use a hula hoop, wrapped in rope.

We found this rope trick at the Wild West Town.  It is short, but holds it’s shape.   Amazon had the rope we used.  You can click and order from here if you want…but don’t feel compelled.

Directions:

  1. You can ask someone at the hardware store to cut the wood, or you can cut the wood when you get home.
  2. You will need 4 legs.  Make each around 30″ long.  I wouldn’t make the legs any longer, the horse will be tippy.
  3. You will need one back.  Again.  Make this around 30″ long. That’s just about the right size.
  4. Then you need to cut the wood for the neck and head.  We made the neck around 16″ and the head was 12″ at the top and 9″ at the bottom.

Clamp the wood into the sawhorse brackets forming the legs and back. Make sure everything is nice and tight. You might want to sand the ends of the wood and knock off the edges. A good precaution.

Now you can screw the head onto the neck.

Next you will screw the neck onto the saw horse.

We used three screws to make sure the neck was secure.

Not much to look at yet….but just wait….

Carson worked on the mane and forelock for our horse.  I used the glue gun to attach them to the neck and top of the head.

Kevin worked on the tail of our horse.  He measured and cut yarn to just the right length.  Again, I used the glue gun to attach the tail to the back of the saw horse.

Luci made the eyes, ears, mouth and nose for the horse.

See?  Nice eyes.  Just like Bud.

All we needed was a blanket.  We used Bud’s horse blanket.   That seemed right.  (You will have noticed that we have a different sawhorse for Snowfire. This one wasn’t as sturdy, so we ended up switching to the wood one.)

They named her Snowfire.

They spent hours currying

…roping…

Be sure your horse if very stable.

….riding…

and loving Snowfire.

The kids have gone home, but she is in our garage, waiting for the kids to come again.

Crisis averted.

Category: What will we do today?, Wild West Day
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(3) Comments and (1) Reply

  1. Amy | August 10, 2011 at 12:04 pm | Reply

    Love that! I remember Bud so well! (and thinking, like you, that it was so easy to just get on and ride!)

  2. Jill H | August 10, 2011 at 12:47 pm | Reply

    I was a very good stuffed bag of …. well …. me

  3. dawnhhenry | August 10, 2011 at 3:29 pm | Reply

    Oh my goodness, so creative…love it!

    • Jill H | August 10, 2011 at 4:04 pm | Reply

      I’ve learned how to do a lot with a little….. 😉

  4. Pingback: What I learned from Camp this year…. | What Will We Do Today?

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