“The Voice of Harmony” in Cheval Pratique’s November 2019 Issue

November 2019 Issue

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Anna has been featured in many international magazines, even some in France, but we are excited to announce her inclusion in Cheval Pratique’s November 2019 Issue.

They cover Anna’s passions, particularly her unique approach to Natural Horsemanship that includes the telepathic and energetic components, her dedication to the Mustangs and the plight of wild horses the world over, and her ability to use Animal Communication to give a voice to the voiceless.

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Welcome to the Reach Out to Horses® Blog!

Welcome to the Reach Out to Horses Blog Message.

Welcome to our little corner of the Blogosphere.   Stop by often to get great tips and information on all things natural horsemanship, animal communication, energy healing, and more.  You can also keep up with all we have going on as Anna travels around the globe teaching her methodologies of trust-based communication.

And of course we want to hear from you. So please comment on those posts that are important to you, share your experiences and let our community get to know who you are.

We look forward to blogging with ya, so check back soon!

Welcome to ROTH, Mary-Ladd Watts!

This little tater sprouted in SC’s zip code 29307 and has always carried an unlimited affinity for all creatures big and small. Growing up, when asked the ever daunting, “What do you want to do with your life?” She was 100% sure she wanted to be a horse and practiced every day galloping around on her four appendages learning to buck, rear, and jump. She feels blessed to have been introduced to horses and nature’s front door at an early age, and her heart knew she was destined to be near the footfall of equines.

Her first love was a Quarter Horse mare who taught her an abundance of valuable lessons. The most important being friendship; a mentorship that lasted for almost three decades. Mary-Ladd’s high energy and determination, and maybe just a quarter of obstinance, had a strong influence in her pursuit of becoming both a middle school teacher and English professor adjunct. She has always been compelled to help people and animals through her compassionate and tender nature. She holds a high heart for the wit of words; Shakespeare is her English idol.  She holds a BA in English concentrated in creative writing and Masters to Teach Secondary English.

Later, she fell into an unbreakable passion for fitness when teaching group exercise classes at a local gym. Through her journey of wellness, she has become a certified therapeutically-orientated yoga instructor with soon to be 800 hours of training, holds her Reiki 1 and 2 attunements, and currently is working through the Reiki Master process. Mary-Ladd has a plethora of group fitness certifications as well and cannot go long without teaching RPM, BODYPUMP, BODYFLOW, or Yoga. These passions encouraged her to become a certified IIN Holistic Health Coach and to receive her NASM personal trainer certification.

While Mary-Ladd has worked in diverse environments, the ones surrounded in animals were always where she felt at home. She believes that laughing and the great outdoors hold the best exercise means and mood boosters, but loving and taking care of animals is her therapy. She is pretty sure she could not go a day without a good coffee kick, jammin’ out to some great tunes, teasing her family and friends, or snuggling with her critters. Mary-Ladd and her husband, Joe, live on a small farm with horses and dogs . . . for now, and she could not be more excited about becoming a new member of the ROTH team. One of her biggest beliefs has always been that animals deserve a voice and that this voice is meant to be heard and shared. She is grateful for this new expedition and experience and is humbled by the work being accomplished here at the ROTH farm in NC. She fits right in. 🙂

Welcome, Mary-Ladd! We are excited to see you grow your future with ROTH!

Achieve Success in the Show Ring with Animal Communication

by Anna Twinney

If you enjoyed this article and want more tips, tricks, and adventures in Animal Communication, join my newsletter, Diary of a Horse Whisperer, by clicking here and subscribing:

ROTH Foals in Training, Then and Now

If you’ve ever fallen in love with an animal and then had to leave them behind,

you’ll have an idea of how hard it can be to connect with each and every horse I meet on my courses and clinics, especially the ones who have uncertain futures and no established home.  The wild foals course is likely the most challenging, as my heartstrings are pulled on endlessly.  You bond with horses and foals when you work with them and speak their language.  The connections are palpable, and for many, it comes as a relief as if they are finally being heard by someone who knows how to hear them.  

When I walk away from them, I do so knowing that both myself and our students did our very best to ready each and every foal for a forever home.  When things go well, ROTH is able to make sure that there is no foal left behind.  We like to see each and every one of them adopted before the course concludes.  The following are some stories of foals that captured our hearts on some of the foals courses and where they are now.  These successes make it possible for me to keep holding these courses, hoping and praying that each foal will find themselves as fortunate as these few have. 

Meet Keanu of Widget Creek and Carolina Bartsch in Wickenburg, AZ

There was this little bundle of black, brown, and white, unsure of his new environment and about ready to climb the panels. Thankfully, he found his way into an Anna Twinney course at three months of age after a rough start. He just lost his mom and experienced a kid’s wrestling rodeo. Not the best introduction to humans for sure! He realized pretty soon that a new, kind wind was blowing in this facility. Plus, he was together with a bunch of other beautiful Warm Springs foals his age.

I was at that course too. Ready to take another step towards my Trainer’s Certification, I was allocated “Keanu”. The name comes from his white spots looking like Hawaiian Islands on his shoulder. We had a wonderful week and he graduated like all the other foals and stepped into a trailer to move to his new family. Foal gentling classes are heart breaking! I shed some tears as I said goodbye. Anna told me to give the new owners my phone number, just in case! I ran after the truck and did just that before they left the premises. A couple of weeks later I got a call. Due to unforeseen circumstances, they could no longer keep little Keanu. Of course, I said YES! He was still not well enough to be transported across state borders. Renegade Equine in Bend, OR, offered to take care of him until he was ready to come home. He received the very best care anyone can imagine! They gave him a great space to be a foal, nurtured him back to health, and prepared him for the long trip in a scary trailer. Finally, in January all the pieces fell into place. Katie Dixon from Renegade loaded him onto a transport and I bit my nails for the next 48 hours.

In the meantime, I found Friday. He is a little tri-colored BLM mustang, one month younger than Keanu. I did not want Keanu to grow up with adult horses and humans only. He needed to be a foal and play with foals! When Keanu arrived, Friday was ready to be his twin brother for the next few years. They grew up together with a Percheron mare who was excellent at keeping the rambunctious duo in line and teaching them a thing or two about respect. Keanu showed at a young age that he was born to not be a follower. One time I observed him giving his “mother” some teenage rudeness. She whipped around and scolded him perfectly. Hard enough so he could feel it, but soft enough and placed perfectly not to cause him any harm. He learned. This was necessary because I wanted to keep him a stallion for a couple of years until he had a chance to develop.

Finally, a few months before he turned three, it was time to have him gelded. My neighbor is an old-school vet. He just swung by one morning, tied Keanu loosely to the fence, gave him a local anesthetic, and completed the procedure in 15 minutes while Kenau was just standing there. This was about as non-traumatic as it could be. On top of that, another ROTH student with a healer soul was visiting at the time. Karin brought out some essential oils and treated Keanu daily with the oils and her magic hands.

Keanu had become quite an interesting young man. He is very observant, rarely taking no for an answer, and he loves to be involved. He got himself into trouble a couple of times exploring. My vet had several opportunities to stitch him up. Friday, who also is game for everything, is much more aware of boundaries and managed childhood without a single incident. At three years of age, they were released out into the “big” herd, consisting mostly of Mustangs. This was another learning curve because the leader of the group made sure the two newcomers observed the boundaries! For a while, they looked like old wool sweaters being eaten by moths. Especially Keanu was not very impressed by the continuous reminders that he was supposedly low in the pecking order.

After being with us all his life after BLM, the herd leader moved out to his owner just a month ago. I thought I knew who was going to take over for him. Not so fast! It starts looking more and more like Keanu is in a playful way telling the much older horses that his ambitions are way more passionate than theirs. I think he might just take over in the future. First off though, is colt starting. Temperatures have finally dropped here in the desert and Keanu, as well as Friday, have fun times ahead getting under saddle. Both love interaction with various humans. I sure am looking forward to this next phase in their lives!

As you have probably figured out by now, Keanu is a master manifester who just seems to be arranging his life perfectly, piece by piece. The pictures only show you some of who he is. You are – of course – welcome to come and visit him any time! He is a tall hunk with a dark wavey mane and dreamy eyes, earning him the nickname Orlando (Orlando Bloom). With his intriguing and commanding personality, he earned himself the title Prince, making him “Prince Keanu Orlando”.

Meet Ruby, then and now…

Ruby was first featured on a ROTH Foals in Training Course two years prior and was adopted.  We assumed that she had found her forever home and that her ROTH methods were serving her well until she was discovered in terrible condition and in need of rescue.  ROTH Certified Trainers, Jill Haase and Lani Salibsury, of Redmond, WA, organized her recovery and she has been with them ever since! “Coming back to us in the fall of 2018, under 2 years old with various owners and inconsistent, poor care, Ruby spent her first year with us receiving better nutrition, time to grow, and learning manners and basic skills:  haltering, leading, hoof care, trailering, vet prep and ponying out on trails. This past year, Ruby enjoyed considerable time at pasture with a familiar herd continuing to mature and grow – allowing her body time to catch up. She looks fantastic, well-muscled, and almost 14 hands! Ruby continues to make the most of any situation: harassing our older horses, taking down our electric fence, & generally looking for action. She is a daily reminder of the possibilities within a horse. Utilizing ROTH’s philosophy and methods: accepting her for her best qualities, being creative with training, and tolerance for her learning style, Ruby consistently demonstrates a steady mind and brave demeanor. Harsher and less flexible methods would yield a very different horse. Her current goals include obstacles at liberty, acceptance of the surcingle, and developing skills long lining. Next stop – colt starting with ROTH this summer!”

For more details on joining us to audit this year’s foals in training course, go here:

“Haste Makes Waste” by Betty Berry

SUMMARY OF THE 2020 ANIMAL COMMUNICATION MENTORSHIP PROGRAM

After attending the 2-day introductory class on animal communication, I felt better prepared to take the next step of going deeper into animal communication and open myself to the challenges of the mentorship program. The tier which included 12 days of in-person with Anna was amazing. I compare it to being a participant versus an auditor in a clinic with Anna. Learning the skills and having feedback instantly is very satisfying. It moves the learning curve along. Then there are the other students who bring their energies, experiences, and support to the circle. We also learn from one another and lean on one another for support in our endeavors. Understanding all the aspects in the world of animal communication is shared by Anna with integrity, compassion and grace. The experiences of connecting not only with dogs, cats, and horses but also with goats, alpacas, and chickens, and wild ones and exotic ones are truly unique and exciting. Unforgettable experiences occurred while we students were coached and shown our path moving forward by Anna’s amazing healing horses. The encouraging support keeps me on the path of learning all I can to grow personally, mentally, and spiritually as an animal communicator. Thank you, Anna.

STORY OF MY EXPERIENCES WITH THE 2020 ANIMAL COMMUNICATION MENTORSHIP PROGRAM

I was fortunate to attend a 2-day Animal Communication class in Elizabeth, Colorado, at Anna Twinney’s ROTH ranch on the first weekend of March. It was an experience which awakened feelings of being more ready to going deeper into animal communication. I took the next step and signed up for the Animal Communication Mentorship program. On hindsight, the program helped me to ride out the rest of 2020 and the new normal of life with Covid.

June 1 through 6 was the start of the Mentorship program, in person with Anna in Elizabeth at her ROTH ranch. Previously, on May 19, we all met on Zoom for the first of ten live webinars with Anna. I have to say that the six days were a roller coaster ride for me; on one day I would feel like I was getting it, only to find myself on the next day like I wasn’t getting it; from having things flow to trying too hard that I blocked myself. A good example is the exercise with feeling samples of horse hair and gaining information. At the 2-day class, I flowed with the exercise and was pleasantly surprised with the mostly accurate information received. The same exercise at the in-person session, I felt I tried too hard to recreate the flow and therefore perceived information which wasn’t necessarily from the animal. The biggest learning curve: honing my skills with open questions and learning delivery.

Practice, practice, practice! I was diligent in June with three animals plus Excaliber and in July with 3 animals and the prairie dogs; I then fell by the wayside and practiced on one animal in August, two in September and October, and none in November and December. Did I need a break? Did I feel discouraged? Did I feel I was trying too hard to be accurate? My calendar shows that my life was filled with more activity as Covid restrictions lessened; did I not have the time nor energy? Physically, my body told me that it needed a lot of healing from the abuse I did to myself from 9 intense days of weeding goat head weeds and wild licorice.

As the time approached for the next 6 days of in person with Anna, not in Colorado but in Mill Spring, North Carolina, and with Covid cases increasing across the nation, it was a defining decision to make the trip. A journey of faith that it was the right decision and of gratitude for the opportunity and of hope to be safe and remain healthy. I will admit that it was different to be in North Carolina and not familiar Colorado, that the energy felt different in a strange location, and that upon returning, I felt a sensation of a time warp. Upon reflection, perhaps communicating with exotics in Costa Rica and a lost animal on Kauai turned into a kind of time travel. Goldie’s communication made a huge impact and epiphany upon waking up the next morning. I had to journal the moment of epiphany and was late for class! Here is my journal entry:

Anna had intended to bring Aria as one of the horses for Animal Communication, but apparently she declined; so Anna brought in Goldie. When I saw her, I told Anna that Goldie was the horse in my dream the night before my trip to Mill Spring. While Goldie was being put in the Round Pen by Aniela, I described to Anna my life as a pie: HTA, Reiki, Animal Communication, miscellaneous energy; rather compartmentalized. I entered the Round Pen and sat on the mounting block waiting to connect with Goldie, who appeared to be more interested in grazing than in me, until Anna asked me about what was I doing with my ancestry. As I explained that I had used Ancestry.com to start researching but wasn’t exactly enamored with the findings and had then tried National Geographic which provided more in-depth information and was planning a trip to Japan at some point to visit family homesteads, Goldie moved to me. Apparently, ancestry was being acknowledged as the topic of communication. I received from Goldie some Grounding, Chakra balance, left side of body (feminine) nudges and pokes with her muzzle. Breaths on front and back for body healing. I saw her do a front leg stomp then later a back leg stomp; not sure of right or left side – think it was right side – perhaps to balance the feminine energy with some masculine. It was a lovely experience; I thanked her verbally and with Reiki Love Lesson; but had no “Aha” moment, until the next morning as I was waking up and my mind reviewed the event. Thinking of the importance/relevance of Goldie’s session yesterday, connections revealed themselves through the fog: my dream occurring the night before my trip of 4 cows and 4 horses lead by a light colored horse with a star – very much looking like Goldie – connecting with my Ireland trip in 2017 and experiencing a shamanic journey to find my ancestry totem which revealed a great grandmother (I thought 5x removed but I didn’t really count) on my mother’s side (this was after checking and asking my paternal grandmother who answered No). However, connecting the dots of my dream of 4 cows and horses leads my memory to recall whether it’s a great grandmother 5x removed or 4. I recalled asking my grandmother, my great grandmother (#1), great great grandmother (#2), the next great grandmother (#3), and the next great grandmother (#4) who said Yes, she was my guide. She’s dressed as a female warrior – in trousers, not a kimono. She asked me to walk with her, and we started to climb up the path way to the hills while she shared with me that we are warrior people. I asked her if we could look for  Quan Yin, goddess of mercy and compassion, who was introduced to me in a shamanic healing earlier on this Ireland trip. But no luck as we were called to return from our shamanic journey. Perhaps another time, another Ireland trip. Connecting the dots because of Goldie (and Anna’s) focus on ancestry – my angelic realm – supporting me on my spiritual journey of energy healing and animal communication, I feel it comes to me from my ancestors. I am continuing the path laid out by my ancestry. I am always amazed when the Universe reveals the connections when I’m ready to receive. What an epiphany! I see my pie slices are now melding and overlapping into each other rather than compartmentalizing as separate slices with borders – I am evolving as One. Thank you Goldie and Anna.

Betty and Goldie

There was an experience which was horrifying to me and yet quite funny. It showed me an example of haste makes waste and an error in judgment to quickly communicate with an animal without going through the proper steps to connect with the right animal. It happened in the exercise where we had a choice of communication with Hermes or Saber to share aspects of the trainer’s exam of the week. I picked Hermes, thought I was connected with Hermes without going through the proper steps, received pictures and words, only to learn from Anna’s validations that I was communicating with Saber! Lesson learned — go through the proper steps to make sure I am connected with the right animal. 

There is so much that I have learned about animal communication since March. This time around the learning curve included reading between the lines. I am a literal person. It’s amazing how the conversation with an animal proceeds when I am able to read between the lines. It takes knack and skill to read between the lines and is a huge learning curve for me. The journey continues, and I will strive to hone my skills and aptitude for all things that are animal communication.

A New Nevada to Enjoy

From Elisabeth Mohr

Nevada and I would like to send a big thank you for your communication & reading session. After the insights you gave me on how Nevada wants to be treated by a human, I can tell you our partnership went to the next level.

Straight after our session I went to see her and told her I understand now and will do my very best to respect her voice. She has indeed a voice too in this relation and I promised I’ll do my best to watch for every sign of her when she wants to tell me something. Since that moment she opened up – like a flower really. Her facial expression was full of energy and connection. The relief was definitely there!

Now in our groundwork play sessions I noticed a lot of differences but the main ones are:

Almost no bucking anymore (!) this is HUGE, she understands that if she is on a turnout or in the pasture she can do whatever she wants but when we are together doing something I want her to respect me because I made it clear I respect her, if she does buck I read it now clearly as a sign of confusion but it has reduced dramatically and this makes me very happy and optimistic for the riding part. After all, I want to be safe.

Attention: she knows perfectly when something is expected from her. It is like she understands now that I understand her role is equally important in this relation and with that, there comes the responsibility to it, and she takes it! She is very on cue, waiting clearly for a question, being polite, and check in on me, even more, to make sure we’re on the right track. I also let her make suggestions on what we should do that day and make sure I end my sessions with something she loves to do such as jumping barrels or a walk in the woods.

Exploring: you emphasized frequently Nevada needs exploration time – so when we walk somewhere, whether it is a forest walk or simply from the stable to the arena, I let her take her time and sniff around when she wants to. I noticed I was a terrible human for her in this area because I was thought that when she stops to sniff she is disobedient – and in some cases, it could be indeed a ‘testing’ of leadership – but in her case it is not, she genuinely wants to know what this bucket or pole or tree is about. So I let her. Since I’ve been giving her space and time to do this and respect her need (that is what is important here) she is much easier to walk around with and relaxes faster if we encounter something new or strange. Very nice progress and again positive when we should go out for a ride instead of a walk in the future. 

Focus on me & RELAX: as described in the attention section: the focus is there and I definitely see a behavioral change to her ‘old’ self when someone else is handling her e.g. when my instructor is taking over if he wants to demonstrate something (and he is a very gentle horse minded guy that I trust) She is much more heads up and falls back into that role of bracing and tension because the ‘agreement’ I’ve made with her is not made with that person and she KNOWS. It is of course very flattering to see a much more respecting and relaxed horse when she is with me 🙂 She also looks me for if I’m not close and when working at liberty she hooks on directly. And on the relaxing topic: now she is comfortable to relax with me: it takes much less time to get the soft eye, soft neck, soft head. Something we have been working on very hard but she was braced because she didn’t feel understood – now she does and it shows in her tolerance of ‘surrender’ to me. She feels safe enough with me to lower the head and almost fall asleep. Something that would have taken ages in the past is now done by simply connecting and having the bond.

She benefits now from Crown and Heart Chakra massage and she is now open to give in to that energy. So I often build in a shiatsu session with her to loosen up that pelvis and treat the two mentioned Chakras. 

I could go on Anna, for hours writing. The bottom line is: THANK YOU for reaching out 😉 so I could reach out to my horse properly and take our connection to the next level! 

I have just finished you Beyond the Barn Volume I which was perfectly complementary to the advice you gave. Volume II is on its way to Belgium.

Wishing you a nice day and all the best to your loved ones. 

The Aha Moment for Me

From ROTH Trainer in NY, Sara Vanecek:

Notes from our communication session between Pippin and Anna Twinney
(and an Aha! Moment for me) Pippin showed Anna how very specific we are when we work with him. There is a very certain way we do things with him. There are no interruptions and no “strangers “. He has not been ready to have a second person approach him on the “other side” while held or led. But the cool part for me was how he showed Anna his love of reaching for “food”. It was a “reset.” His reach acts as a reset! I can feel it, but couldn’t put a word. Physically and mentally, it tells me he’s back and present and engaged again. It’s the softest request and a beautiful touch. It reconnects us after pressure, fear, or being startled.  

I also consulted with my friend and mentor to help prepare Pippin for his first trim of his feet. This will require him to be sedated and most likely to be laid down. Our goal is to prepare him as much as possible to keep him safe with the least amount of trauma, given his significant fear of handling his feet and any close presence of people. He’s a long way off from a traditional trim. With his permission to share so that we may show and help others, these are a few more thoughts that were shared through my session with Anna.

He knows what is coming and that he will be lying down. He viewed this as a one-time experience, “not a new way!” It was important for us to know that he did not kick to hurt, just to get away or get his foot back. He was very skeptical of vets. It doesn’t matter “how they are”. He knew we would try to control the sound, feeling, and quantity of time during the process, but it wouldn’t change his ability to cope. He showed Anna he was lying down in his stall, the trim was “minor”. We were calm, not rushed, and we held space for him. He knew I didn’t want his teeth done (I am worried it would be too much) and he commented several times that our intention was “casual”. I understand that as I want my team to go with the flow, do what’s safe, respectful, and reasonable. I’d like us to adjust our actions the best we can for him. He was certain of no panels or chutes for restraint,  this means abuse to him. He knows I want to share his story to have an educational and positive impact on others.  There is “nothing I can’t share because he is protected by me”.💓  It’s a learning process for me too. Trimming day is near. 🙏 the support is wonderful and keeps us moving forward. Again, thank you, Anna.

ROTH Intern, Marissa Mulville is right where she’s meant to be

Who knew that a two-foot snowfall in the middle of winter would be the catalyst to what would become my lifelong passion for horses?

To make a long story short, many years ago after a heavy snowfall, a barn roof began to collapse and my dad was called to stabilize the roof and help save the horses and I tagged along to help him.  Let’s be real, I just wanted to be there with the horses because I’ve always been so captivated by their presence. From that day on I have had a love for horses and a desire to better understand them. I began taking lessons, working at the barn, and anything else I could do just to be around these gorgeous animals.

After learning some of Anna’s methods from a friend, I knew there was something so unique about the way she captured their language. Instantly, I was hooked! I was so intrigued and I found myself watching her YouTube videos and trying to learn how she knows exactly what animals are saying solely through their body language. I appreciate that she communicates through kindness and works as a team with each horse instead of having the horse work for her. After I heard about this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be an intern here, it seemed as though everything just fell perfectly into place. Over the past few months, I’ve realized that this is exactly where I am meant to be and through all of the uncertainty over the past year, one thing became certain to me–I needed to learn more! And the rest is history, here I am working and learning at the best place on earth!

Proudly Presenting Jarret Ditch

Howdy, Everyone!

Originally from Lafayette, Louisiana, I was born and raised on the Horse Farm. My grandmother, Patricia Foreman, helped me to understand the beauty and empathic nature of the horse. She taught me a horse’s unique ability to accept and reflect the energy you bring to them and how we can use that energy exchange to communicate. I felt my heart open and continue to feel it open as I spend more time with them, sharing the land, and learning to live and work together in love.

As a Professional Dancer and Stunt Rider, I feel extremely blessed to have traveled and performed in countries around the world. We can share favorites when ya’ll come to the farm.  Some of my favorite shows I had the honor to perform in was Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament. As a knight, I had the opportunity to partner with some amazing horses, training in Medieval Combat Arts. So bring your swords! Another favorite was dancing with The Radio City Rockettes. It was an honor to be part of this iconic team. Rocking out 4 shows a day and dancing my face off. Did we mention you all are gonna be dancin’ when you come to Whispering Feather Farm? Most recently I accepted a contract as Lead Stunt Rider/Trainer for Disney’s Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show in Paris, France; The longest-running western stunt show in the world. The entire family was moving to Paris on July 4th. Due to the pandemic, this contract was put on hold. This means we are staying in North Carolina and I couldn’t be more grateful. Grateful for my community. The friends and family who pull together to support each other unconditionally.

After the loss of Buffalo Bill, a good friend of mine shared with me his connection of a New Farm looking for a Horseman to help them create a center for the healing arts. From Natural Horsemanship and Communication, understanding that every animal has a voice. to Music, Dance, and the Theater Arts. It was an honor to meet Anna Twinney and Vince Mancarella, The Founders of Whispering Feather Farm, Reach Out To Horses, and The Way of the Equine Warrior. After meeting them so synchronistically, I quickly realized that this unique farm with its unique vision was going to be a part of my life.

I look forward to meeting and working with all the visitors, students, and trainers on the farm. Together in community, we will expand and share this beautiful space.


See You Soon!
With Gratitude,
Jarret Ditch

The Saga of Sage

Sage came to us on one of our foal gentling courses,

and she was tiny, orphaned, and quite helpless.  However, Ruby Sage had a warrior spirit that was palpable and we knew that if she was provided the right environment, she would ultimately flourish and grow into the spectacular horse she was destined to become.  As she got bigger, she began to find her place in her own herd of four.  It was Sage and the boys; headed up by herd leader, Dillon, and including her two sibling brothers, Saber and Hermes. To say that she learned to play rough would be an understatement.  She grew up as the ultimate tomboy, a persona that eventually evolved into the warrior princess that she is today. Most of you will recall that we had intended to colt start her this year, but due to a traumatic injury that she sustained this spring, our plans for her were nearly thwarted altogether.  We were patient and diligent in her care. Our intern at the time, Safia, took painstaking care of her leg and continued to doctor it daily along with several others who popped in to provide support.  Along with Young Living Oils, Dynamite products, and the Bemer blanket, Sage was on the road to recovery and things were looking up again for our little filly. In August of this year, we all held our breaths as we loaded her on a trailer to drive her all the way across the country to our new home in the south.  For those of you familiar with the stresses of trailering, we were concerned that Sage might suffer a setback after having to bear so much weight on her injured leg for that many hours in a row.  But she surprised us all when she came off the trailer spunky as ever and in great shape.  We all breathed a deep sigh of relief as our girl’s leg had itself made the final leg of our recent life journey to North Carolina. We wanted to offer you all a newsletter dedicated to Sage, to all of those who stood by her and us with your generous donations of time, money, healing in person and distance Reiki, and all the hands-on care that she received as she fought so valiantly to make her way back to being the vibrant little filly we all know and love. If you are one of the dear souls who touched Sage’s life (and ours) with your generosity in ANY way, we want to thank you and honor you for your commitment to her and to us.  We are so fortunate to have the people in our tribe that we do and we want to let you all know that we could not have done this without you. Thank you for saving our Ruby Sage! 

I asked for my birthday in April that our girl would return home to us and it was made possible by the generosity of all involved: those who donated, my family, and by the phenomenal care of the veterinarians at Littleton Large Equine Hospital in CO.   This marked the beginning of Sage’s journey to recovery.  As she returned home, we had to figure out the best way to support her medically while keeping the rest of her herd nearby so that she wouldn’t panic and reinjured herself.  Given the nature of her grave injury, we did suffer a couple of small setbacks when sutures refused to hold and her laceration would open once more, but each time we responded promptly and holistically, to support her healing journey as best we could, and it turns out that our approach was second to none.  Sage healed better and more quickly than any could have imagined or predicted and for that, we are grateful!

Selfless Safia and her Sustaining Efforts

As we had been all along, we relied on Safia to be at the forefront of Sage’s care.  She provided not only additional caretaker duties in terms of now filling buckets and stall cleaning a couple of times a day, but she also attended to all of Sage’s supplements and medicines, and all of her complementary therapies.  Safia’s already full schedule left little to no room for additions, but she selflessly stepped up and spent many an early morning and late-night taking the very best care of Sage.  Safia was an integral part of Sage’s healing until we got her to North Carolina, and for her, we are grateful!  We know that the journey for Safia was at least as long as Sage’s, and the exhaustion was no doubt extreme, but she kept on and lit the way for hope to follow as we marched, mile after mile, toward our new home.

Sage Supplies Schooling at a Master Level
One of the hardest-hitting factors of this injury was that we weren’t sure if Sage would ever be able to be ridden.  Just before her injury, she had been slated to go into Colt Starting for the year and we were looking so forward to gentling her so that we could include our little girl on trail rides and at family events and clinics.  But the injury not only halted any progress in that direction, it nearly abolished any hope that we would ever get there, even in her lifetime!  We were so pleasantly surprised to see her return to good health and her ability to freely go back into her herd signaled the beginning of the possibility that Sage might be able to start under saddle once more.  We figured that racing through the pasture and running amok with her siblings meant that she was feeling well and solid enough to return to the path onto which her destiny had brought her. We are not pleased to report, but rather BEAMING to report, that Sage was included in our Trainer’s Week here in Mill Spring.  This week and the work included paved the way for her return to colt starting.
Sage Starts Under Saddle
I cautiously recalled the first time she went under saddle in the round pen  at Zuma’s nearly a year ago.  There was some squealing, a lot of running and bucking, and some tears on my part as I knew that my girl was scared of the saddle that was secured around her portly little barrel.  I took a deep breath as moments throughout this year flashed in my mind: from the cold night of the accident and the harried trailer ride to save her life, the hours upon hours and days upon days of seeing her confined to a stall for her own good, the numerous bandage changes, the blood, the evaluations of the injury site and whether or not we were making progress, the anxious journey across the U.S. to finally unload her at our new home in NC, all the way to holding my breath as I watched her run with her herd for the first time but feared the injury might reopen, each memory seemed to combine and pass through me as though a cool breeze. All of those moments, all of those fears, hopes, wishes, and tears, every single one of them, brought us to this very moment right now. And right now, I mindfully watch her eye as I ask permission to mount.  I slowly, as if moving through oil, slide my leg over her back and softly sit down into the tack.  I find my stirrups and press my heels way down.  I sit with my tail bone curled under to maintain my balance, waiting for the buck and the move into pressure, but this time Sage does none of that.  Instead, she breathes deeply, looks off into the distance, and softly licks her lips as she maintains a relaxed demeanor as if to say, “I’ve been waiting for this too.”  And then I see her look for her herd to see if they are watching and to make sure that they note this very important day in her young life as well.  Indeed, noses lined up along the adjacent fence, her herd supports her from a distance as I’m sure they are cheering in their hearts as am I.   This was a moment of true connection, true collaboration, and pure triumph as we went from the beginning of 2020, having a horse with a potentially life-ending injury and certainly a career-ending one, to this moment at the end of 2020, one manifested through hope, surrender, many prayers, and brought to full fruition through the goodwill of people.  Thank you for making my first ride on Sage possible.  To everyone who has supported us along the way: WE MADE IT!

We got an enocuraging and beautiful note from ROTH Certified Trainer, Carolina Bartsch of AZ and wanted to share…

Anna,

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for putting all the pieces together. What a journey! I was wondering for a while about her journey – I knew only pieces here and there. The way you wrote this newsletter… it all comes together. This one story reminds me of how much persona and destiny comes with each of our animals to weave the tapestry of life together with us. My life already has received many more colours thanks to your guidance but this is one of the most memorable lessons of all.

With love,

Carolina

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In gratitude for two miraculous Animal Communication sessions with Master Communicator, Anna Twinney

By Nawal Malki

I had 2 communication sessions with 2 mares: Valentine and Zouga.

Anna, what ease, what speed, what authenticity, what precision that is not common to communicate with horses!

During the communication sessions, Anna reports facts to me as if she were there: events … feelings … revelations … a description of the mares, their needs, their wishes … a description of humans, landscapes … my intention to be/or not with Valentine … At the end of my 1st session, I remain struck, amazed, invaded by my emotions! Why ? Anna confirms that the horse that I had seen in a splendid dream was indeed the Valentine mare! Anna is not satisfied with a “yes/no, it was really Valentine”. In less than 3 seconds of my question, she describes to me a part of my dream that I had not told anyone. Only Valentine, being there, knew it!!!

I lived magical moments, very strong in emotions, unique, where the “noise”, the distraction, the futile, the “words” give way to “silence”, to “listening”, to connection, to the magic, to the sensitivity, to the authenticity, to the sweetness, to the purity and to the dialogue of souls … wishing that my tens of minutes (of the session) would last an eternity.

Me in Morocco (Casablanca), the mares 35 km from my home and Anna in Colorado :)) with a time difference of 7 hours… The concept of space-time evaporates, completely!! During the sessions, we feel transported by the magic of the present moment … We live every second, we dissect every word, we analyze each intonation of Anna’s voice (… those of the mares) … We just want to be in the body, the head, the heart, the eyes (…) of Anna to feel, see, perhaps smell and hear, live these incredible moments of connection between the mares and her (Us).

Anna reports the facts with authenticity: “She didn’t say it can hurt her (the mare)…” it can be not comfortable for her “.

With precision: “you get imbalance in the left side”

With great emotions and great sensitivity (joy even bursts of laughter, astonishment, sadness sometimes…).

Listening to the recording again, I am speechless! Anna is very receptive even to my short, short, barely hearable “hum”.

The animal communication sessions with Anna are an experience that cannot be described, she is lived …

Anna, you are an intelligent, impressive lady, a beautiful soul, a strong person in appearance with deep down a big heart filled with love, sensitivity and kindness. I have the firm conviction of being able to meet you, I hope so soon and closely in Morocco

This magnificent, unique and unforgettable experience would not have taken place at all without my dear friend Safia, whom I thank for her big heart, her generosity, her time and her sense of sharing …

I am very lucky and grateful for the knowledge of you both. Anna, Safia, BIG Kisses J

Thank you very much, Zouga. I wish you the best of life.

An infinite “thank you” to you my very dear and adorable Valentine for all the Sweetness, Love, Strength, & Confidence that you keep bringing me… thank you for your countless teachings… Never I would have imagined that a soul mate could be a mare… I hope with all my heart that we will be together one day… See you tomorrow. With all my love. Nawal

💕Nawalentine * Valentinawal💕