I was raised on a farm. I was raised riding horses. I was raised to make sure needs of those who couldn’t speak were meant before my own needs. I was taught safety, I was taught genetics, biology, so much more standing in a barn, in a field. I learned the value of hard work, I learned what it cost to care for animals, to haul hay, find the right cuts, administer shots, basic veterinary care and much more.
Farm raised comes with a whole lot of work. I learned more on a farm, in a field than perhaps I ever did in a classroom and believe me I have a lot of classroom learning. On that farm I learned beauty and I learned to take pictures as well.
June 15th I was schedule to photograph a horse show, nothing different on my summer schedule but per weather restrictions it ended up canceled so I went to the barn with my sister and soon to be five year old niece. We are teaching her animal care, passing on our knowledge but mostly letting her have experiences non-farm kids rarely get.
My niece got her first pony at 1 years old, and shhh…. but for her 5th birthday here soon she is getting pony number 2 as her first is 17 years old and ready for retirement. See in my family asking for a pony and receiving one is a right of passage of learning and growing outside a classroom. My niece for now gets to be a farm girl, the horse girl, as long as she so chooses— we do not force anyone to own and ride if it isn’t their choice and passion.
So like anything in life, art, music, photography, business, or yes animal care it is time to teach her, for her to learn and put in the work to become good and capable. It isn’t overnight and it won’t be easy. Animal care rarely is, but my niece is lucky she is being started early…
Also she is adorable and I can not wait till she gets her new horse for her birthday. We will be doing Mommy and Me + Our Paints once she is you know in on the surprise birthday present…. soooo shhhh people we have to make it to the 18th!