I grew up in a family that treated any achievement as a step to the next, more important, thing. This has its benefits. The world is a more interesting place when you take on challenges. The downside is that you never feel as if what you do is enough. My entire […]

Setting Goals


  When I was a very little girl I dreamed up my perfect horse. He was going to be black, with a white mane and tail. I even named him Midnight Snow. That color combination is not a genetic possibility, and I even knew back then that such a horse didn’t exist, […]

Dream Horse


Only in a laboratory does training happen in a sterile box. The real world is complex and changing. It’s impossible to keep the environment the same from training session to session. The list of potential distractions is long – it’s windy, a fly bites, a car backfires, a horse whinnies, someone walks by eating an […]

Context Matters



Although a horse’s safety can depend on putting distance between themselves and what scares them, it’s not true that they take flight without thinking. Blindly taking off carries risks – of running headlong into a worse danger, of injuring oneself, and of being separated from the herd. A horse prefers to assess the situation […]

Not “Bombproof”


Not quite a year ago I wrote my last blogpost for the HenCam, where I shared what I know about backyard chicken keeping. After ten years, I’d said everything that I wanted to say on that topic. But that blog wasn’t just a bunch of how-to articles. My readers got to […]

Goings On At Little Pond Farm


It hasn’t been the coldest or the snowiest of winters, but it has been miserable. We’ve had just enough slushy snow to make the footing either icy or muddy. There haven’t been many days that Tonka and I were able to get out of the indoor arena and walk the trails. […]

Shaking Off Winter



My friend, Michele, is a dog person. She and her husband like to have a house full of them. Not too long ago, her pack was sadly reduced to only two. These two dogs were perfect, and got along with each other and with the cats. They went for daily off-leash walks […]

Self-control Leads to Happiness


As much as I enjoy working Tonka in a ring (click on the dressage category to the right to read posts about that), I believe in balancing that schooling with time on the trail. Not only is it good cross-training, but it makes both of us happy. Even when there’s snow […]

From Fearful to Calm


In January I noticed that something wasn’t quite right with Tonka. In December he’d been offering a lofty, energetic trot, something he hadn’t been capable of before. We both felt strong and buoyant. We’d worked hard to get to this point. We’d been doing cross-training – hills in the woods and […]

Sleuthing The Cause of a Stiff Neck