Farming even on the smallest scale is a full-time job in itself. The tired business man will find it a toil or a pleasure. The daily chores involved are relentless and unending. A business appointment in town is no excuse for their non-fulfillment. They must be done at a regular time, if not by you by some one else. Of course, with a family where there are three or more small children, keeping a cow can be both practical and economical. With the normal table and cooking uses the milk given can be consumed without difficulty. Further, the expense of maintaining would probably fall much below the monthly milk bill under such circumstances. For this purpose, select one of the Jersey or Guernsey breed which gives rich milk rather than quantity.
For the family that can afford and enjoy saddle horses, it is pleasant to have them, but with their advent the country home becomes still more complicated. There must be a stable with somebody to tend and groom the horses. They must be exercised too, which means systematic riding rather than an occasional canter on just the ideal day. Also with even one horse, if a need for economy arises it is not always easy to dispense with him. He is flesh and blood and, humanely, you cannot just sell him to the first buyer who presents himself. You must be assured that your mount will be well-treated and not abused. We have known of several instances where a number of excellent saddle horses were given away by owners, who felt that they could no longer afford to buy their oats and hay, but wanted to be sure the animals would be well cared for.
So, before acquiring horses, contemplate the up-keep and make sure you are prepared to maintain them whether business is good, bad, or indifferent. For the first year or two a much wiser course is to turn to the neighborhood riding stable and rent. These have become standard institutions in many vicinities and they frequently afford not only excellent mounts but sound teaching for those who know little or nothing about the finer points of riding.
The wolf of winter was the arresting phrase originated several years ago by no less a practitioner of the art of advertising than Bruce Barton, to drive home the merits of adequate domestic heating. But no matter how efficient your heating system may be, unless the country home has been made ready for the cold months, insufficient heat and excessive fuel bills result.