I've lived in Southwest Virginia since I was a little blond, horse obsessed girl.
I grew up on a thirty-six acre hobby farm nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains. I was homeschooled for the majority of my education. I spent a lot of my time surrounded by nature and our numerous farm animals which included horses, goats, chickens, cats, dogs, and various wild rescued animals.
In all my years on a farm I've played a lot of different roles. I've been the nurse that applied bandages, the grunt worker that dug holes for fence posts, and the detective that had to figure out just how the brand new fencing was unable to keep in "those blasted goats". I've been the foremost household expert on chicken wrangling, the gardener with a limited green thumb, and I've been the undertaker and grave digger as well. All and all, my farm girl's education has created a individual that's not scared of dirt, big horses, or hard work.
My Work With Horses
Where as most horse obsessed young girls took english or western riding lessons, I took natural horsemanship lessons. I spent more time on the ground learning how to work with and train horses than I did in the saddle. Most of the time I did spend "in the saddle" I rode bareback, in direct connection with the horse. I took my lessons to heart, and continued all I had learned on my own horses. Years later, I was hired to help teach natural horsemanship to a family, and also to train their horses. I worked side by side with them and their horses and saw all of them grow in confidence and trust.
I've owned several horses since I was seven, all of which my family and I kept barefoot. The process of trimming always fascinated me, and as I grew strong enough to wield a pair of nippers and a rasp I thought, "What the heck, might as well learn how to trim my own horses". I started learning how to trim by watching our farrier Terrie Wood, the woman who taught me everything about natural horsemanship. After a while of watching and learning, I picked up the tools of the trade. I started by trimming my own horse, then moved to my family's horses. I went with Terrie to some of her jobs to learn what it was like to trim other horses, and what it was like to work with all shapes and sizes of hooves. I then moved on to working at her farm and trimming her horses, at first with her, then to her just checking my work, then to working and learning alone. In the last four years I've worked on everything from arabians, to miniature horses, to warmblood draft crosses, to donkeys. I've trimmed big feet, cracked feet, abscessed feet, chronically foundered feet, and neglected feet.