Winston Churchill is credited with the quote, 'There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.' Winston, I couldn't agree more! I can't think of a better way to kick off National I Love Horses Day today!

My life long love affair with horses began when I was a newborn. Seriously. My mom loves horses and there are pictures (somewhere) of me in a baby backpack while she's cleaning stalls and caring for our four legged friends! She said as I got older I'd pull mane and squeal with delight. The horses eventually got used to it.

Over the years I've had more four legged best friends than I can count. Ann the Winner was the first one that I clearly remember. Growing up we boarded at a series of places across the country being Air Force, but Annie was a pure gold and traveled everywhere with us and mom remembers me climbing onto Annie at 6 years old from the fence, bareback with nothing but a halter. Ms. Sig at Double Rainbow Farm would tell my mom that if she didn't know that horse she'd have a fit. Not the safest thing for a little one to do, but Annie would have protected me with her last breath.

From there I had more Arabians like Stella Dallas and Sir Lance a Lot and then I got into off track thoroughbreds. My first was named Seldom Still... trust me when I tell you he was aptly named. I found myself walking home from lessons that I had to ride a few miles to more often than not.

Summers consisted of me and my brother loading up, packing a lunch and hitting the trails. There was even a place out in Haughton where you could swim with your horses. I can't imagine growing up any differently. Between 4-H, Pony Club, horse shows at the Haughton Riding Club and at the State Fair grounds, I'll admit I had a blessed childhood.

When my dad got really sick, we ended up moving to Ohio to be closer to my mother's family and get my dad the medical care he needed. Through his heart transplant and my final years of high school and then college there just wasn't any time or money for horses. Finally, 18 years later, soon after Keith and I got married, my mom decided she was moving to Louisiana to be close to us after we lost my dad. She wanted to fulfill her life long dream of having her own farm. I'll admit, it was a decision I supported whole-heartedly!

Since then we've have Duece, Under Pressure, Dakota aka Ray's Dipstick, Diva, Sarah, Buck, Danny, Paisano, Sunny, Neal the Real Deal, Amari, Captain Crane, Honey and Sweetheart. Each one has their own personality and is or was completely special in their own way.

I hope you're blessed enough at some point in your life the enjoy the pure love of a horse.


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