≡ Menu

Country, Cowboys and Caballos

Banda Horses We have the best landlords in the world. Not only are they responsive and conscientious when it comes to home maintenance issues, they are both just really wonderful people. One would be lucky to know them; we are. I would go so far as to say they are Earth Angels. They extend a helping hand to many, both humans and animals alike, with nothing expected in turn except perhaps the good karma of paying it forward. They reached out to us during a time of need, and the relationship and friendship we are building with them is a true gift.

Banda Burros

These guys might be small in stature, but they have BIG lungs!

We are fortunate to have an open invitation to come out to their ranch in Banda to ride their beautiful horses, play with their pack of dogs (most of them rescued), chase chickens, feed the 4 burros (also rescued), ride quads, and enjoy the sights, sounds, and smells of mother nature in the Mexican central highlands.


Liam giving Dolly some treats before their ride

It would be an understatement to say that this time with the animals in nature has been very healing for our children and connecting for our family as we continue to settle into our new lives here in the central highlands of Mexico. There is a magic here, out on the ranch, away from the stimulus of the city, where time slows down and you literally stop to smell the flowers. We are grateful to have access to both worlds. Moving from the small pueblo of San Pancho with a population of under 3,000 to San Miguel with a population of around 150,000 has been an adjustment for us, especially The Reds. Coming out to Banda allows Mairead and Liam the freedom and space to run, play, and explore, unihibited by some of the larger city realities.


Central Mexico!

Their ranch hands Mario and Rodo accompany us on the rides, lead the way through the dusty trails, and see to it that our little ones are safe and looked after as they get their feet wet in the equestrian arena. They are true cowboys, and a hard day of work in the high desert sun is nothing foreign to them. They are gracious, full of information and stories about life in central Mexico, and grateful for a cold soft drink at the end of a 2-hour ride. Each of Erik and Holly’s 6 horses are gorgeous, well trained, spirited, and so fun to ride. Liam is mastering how to say ‘whoooooaaaaa’ each time Dolly gets a little excited and Mairead, in her free-spiritedness, has given me a few heart-attacks as she explores her freedom on Cañon. Frank has been paired up with Guerrero (Warrior), the ‘gentle giant’, and a giant he is! Seeing Frank on top of Guerrero, with his campesino hat on, riding through the desert highlands of Mexico, is a site indeed. Much different from his life as a firefighter for sure.

Liam Chasing Chickens

The chicken chase is on!


Mairead Chicken Catcher

Success! The Mama chicken and her babies can now rest safely for the night!

As for me, Casa Nova and I seemed to have been matched up, and a lover he is with all the neck massages he requires at the end of each ride.

KT & Casanova

Me on Loverboy….aka Casanova

And as they say, pictures can say a thousand words so I will let them tell the rest of this story…..


Mairead giving Cañon some love after another fun ride!


Liam on Quad

Liam’s first time on a quad, solo!



Me on Casanova, Mario on No Manches, riding past the corn fields, hearing lots of great stories!

The O’Grady Adventures continue….from Southern California to the Mexican Jungle, to the Desert Highlands of Central Mexico!….. Stay tuned~

About the author: Together with my Retired Firefighter Husband and our now 18-year-old twins who were just 8 when we immigrated to Mexico in 2012, we have created a joyful life of design and freedom South of The Border. Welcome to Los O’Gradys in Mexico! Saludos, Katie 🇲🇽 ☘️

{ 7 comments… add one }
  • Mom May 31, 2014, 3:05 am

    Great post and photos!


    • MaireadEma3 May 31, 2014, 3:40 am

      Thank you Mama!
      🙂 xo

  • Anna Yager June 2, 2014, 4:13 am

    What a blessing to have these people in your lives! And I’m impressed with the new blog look. What caused you to switch to Wordpress? And while I’m asking questions, maybe someday you can tell the story of how you settled on Big City SMA to move to when you decided to get away from all the rain.

    • MaireadEma3 June 2, 2014, 4:47 am

      Great question Anna, and yes, I will for sure write about that in an upcoming blog post!
      Regarding my switch from Blogger to WordPress I am taking an online girl’s guide to web design course and wanting to increase my knowledge base and improve the overall look and function of my blog….. a work in progress for sure, but well worth it!

  • Ron Hoff June 5, 2014, 2:59 am

    What lucky kids you have!!!

    • Katie O'Grady June 5, 2014, 1:21 pm

      Thank you Ron. We are so happy and grateful that they get to live this life of adventure and color…no sitting around the X-box for hours on end around here.
      Today, Mairead will prepare for a performance at Las Bellas Artes and then we head out to the ranch for some time with our animals buddies!
      Frank and I feel the lucky ones to be gifted with such treasures….

  • Katie O'Grady July 27, 2014, 12:40 pm

    Thank you Marisa!

    Welcome to the adventures of Los O’Gradys in Mexico!

Leave a Comment


Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)