Thank you.

To all those who read this blog. This is a testimony of God's power to anyone who wants to pursue a ministry to accomplish the purpose that He has written for our lives. If we trust in Him completely, He will guide our steps so His Ministry becomes a well watered garden growing fruit to His perfection, not limited by any physical sense, but everything supplied by Him.

"And my God will meet all my needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:19

Enjoy the journey with me.



Saturday, December 24, 2011

Chapter Seventeen - Extreme Ranch Makeover

My husband also thought it wasn’t that bad.  I thought they were all blind, because I thought it was horrible.  Because of my distraught, Steve decided to help out.  He contacted his purchasing department to see if they could get some contractors to volunteer to help clean up the ranch.  They agreed.  Let the Extreme Ranch Makeover begin!!!! 
My 50th birthday party was planned for October 28, so I wanted to have the horses moved over early so my family could come see them at their new location.
The contractors brought in HEAVY equipment in addition to manpower with power tools, the ranch got cleaned up in a weekend.   We had all of our participants come out and help pick up trash as well.  What an improvement.  We hauled off about 1,000 tons of scrap metal.  I think the other tenants on the property thought I came in and took over the entire ranch.  I believe they felt very displaced and out of touch.   When light arrives, darkness has to flee.  We rented the back end of the barn which included 6 stalls.  We converted one of the stalls into a tack room.   Since we were used to having our tack room in the “elements” that was ok for us.   We also got 3 turn outs plus we were given the 4 ton pellet bin to use.  We moved the horses over just in time for my birthday party.  I asked Carol if she wanted to move Snickers over, but by the time she was able to answer, I had already moved her over.   She seemed ok with it since I was still paying for her board and care and she was still volunteering in the ministry.   Snickers and Carol have since left the ministry.   Carol is back at Chris’s with Snickers and her daughter's horse Silvie having a wonderful time.   My friend Cami enjoys riding with her Aunt on the weekends. 
Here are some pictures of the Extreme Ranch Makeover:

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Chapter Sixteen - Tigger, Buddy and our New Home..Really?

Since Cocoa was still having her challenges (we thought when we got her that she was more broke than what she was), in August of 2010 our need for more horses was fulfilled.  We received another donation of two horses, Tigger and Buddy, referred to us by Tracy, the trainer who referred Allie and Cocoa.  Thank you Lord for these two animals.    Not only did I get these two donated horses that were fairly well trained, but I also received some more tack.  A couple saddles and a few other items, plus the promise to donate money for each horse for 3 years to help them with their expenses as long as I have the previous owners first right if I needed to get rid of them for some reason.  No problem.    What an awesome gift.  Only God can surprise you with such an amazing donation.   Now we had 10 horses.  Too many for the barn, so we turned the geldings out with each other.  I learned quickly about pecking orders.  The two new horses plus the mustangs and Dillon were all turned out together.    Allie, who was turned out just next to them, would always kick at them and kick the fence instead.  I think it was about twice that she really hurt herself from kicking the fence.  Sometimes it would take her weeks to get better which left her out of commission.
We were crowded.  It wasn’t great, but it would do.  Now that we had more horses to ride, we continued to get more people coming out.   We were getting very busy.  God will only give you as much as you can handle.  Tom Hayman also became our Farrier.  Unknown to him, he would be playing a very big role in our ministry.
My husband and I still visited our house in Laguna Beach every month which would mean that the Ministry needed to go on without me the Saturday that I was gone.  This is when I had to begin to turn God’s ministry over to others.  It was not going as smoothly as I had hoped in the beginning, because I truly believe that Satan is always looking for a way to destroy this ministry.   Even though this is God’s ministry, He has still given me dominion on this earth. So through prayer and intercession, I was able to be victorious over Satan's continued plan of attack once again!!
Not long after this growth spurt in late September of 2010, I found out from David that Chris was asking him to move out.  He needed to rent the apartment for income.  Wow!!!  I went straight to prayer.  David is still fighting the cancer.  He trains, feeds and cleans the horses plus he volunteers his time with the people coming for the Ministry.  David was and still is a very integral part of this Ministry.   I knew he would require help finding a place to live.  Where ever the place, it could not be very far away from the barn because he feeds the horses twice a day.   The volunteers have also stepped up their commitment, during some times when they would come and help feed and clean when David could not.  I had a great volunteer and participant base at this time.  I knew God had a plan.  I started looking for rooms to rent for David in the area.  They were running about $300-$400/month.  That would work if that was the direction God wanted us to go, however, they weren’t all that close to the ranch.   That was the dilemma. 
I then remembered that my Mom and her new husband, Cal, had just returned from Washington with their Minnie Winnie, a small motor home.  I called her and asked if she would be willing to let us use the motor home for the winter months since David needed a place to stay.  It just so happened that she HATED the motor home because it had bed bugs and she never wanted to stay in it again!!!   Amazing timing!!  So she donated the motor home to the ministry.   A $9500 donation!!  OK, so now I have a motor home for David to live in.  But where would we park it?  I called and asked Chris if I could park it near our barn on his property and he said no.  I also called and asked our Farrier, Tom Hayman, if we could park the motor home on his property.  He said no, but he knew of an old Roping Ranch that used to have RV hook ups, owned by a man named Gene Dietz.  He thought it was somewhere off of 136th St.  Then I started calling around the Rio Verde area to find someone that new of Gene Dietz.  I got a hold of a woman in charge of the Rio Verde Horseman’s Association and asked her if she knew of a man named Gene Dietz.  She said no, but she knew of his son, Paul Dietz.  I called Paul and got the number for his dad.  I found out later that Paul Dietz had a flyer on Chris’s bulletin board!!  Funny, what a small world.  Anyway, I called Gene and asked about his RV hook ups.  He said he had one available and that he charges $300 month.  Since this was about the same as the rental rooms, which I had pretty much settled on that new expense, I was willing to pay that.  The Lord then led me to ask him if he had any room for horses.  He said that he charged $75 for a stall or $50 for a turn out for a do- it-yourself program, providing your own food and cleaning yourself.  Oh my goodness.   That price per horse times 10 would be at the most $750/month plus David’s $300 for the RV parking, would still be more than a $1000/month savings.  I was so excited about this new opportunity.    No agreement was made over the phone until we went over to meet him and check out his place.
David and I drove up and I was in dismay.  This 10 acre ranch had been severely neglected.  Not only was it a storage for all sorts of street lights, scrap metal and trash, but it also had severely neglected horses on the property, about 10 in all.   There were 3 trailer homes on the property that had also been neglected and poorly maintained.  My first thought was, Lord, is this what it has come down to?  Living in despair and destruction?  David was quick to point out that all of this was cosmetic and could be easily fixed.  I’m glad he had vision, because mine was being challenged.   We met with the owner Gene, and he showed us where we could hook up the motor home.  It was our only solution to David’s living arrangement.  We also discussed the possibility of moving all the horses over.   Gene’s explanation for the neglect of his ranch was heartbreaking.  It brought tears to my eyes.  I could not let the appearance of the ranch dictate my decision since we HAD to make a decision.   So I asked if we could move in by the end of October.  That would give me 30 days advance notice for Chris plus whatever improvements we could make to the ranch before we moved over there.   I would immediately fly David to California to get the motor home from my mom, have it sprayed for bed bugs, then move it to the new ranch with his horse MaGlory in the beginning of October to satisfy Chris.  It would only be a couple weeks that David would have to drive back and forth to feed the horses until we moved them over.
Here are pictures I took of the ranch which I showed to my husband:

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Chapter Fifteen - 1st Annual Horse Camp

Part of the website that I created lists future programs.  One of which is “off site trips.”   So I started researching campsites that allowed horses and found the most reasonable camp ground that was designed exclusively for horses and campers.    So I planned our First Annual Horse Camp in July of 2010.  We rented six camp sites.   Each campsite includes a pen and a tether line.  We took eight horses up to camp.  We borrowed our Farrier’s two horse trailer and hired Tom Hayman to haul the rest in his big stock trailer. 
We had a wonderful time!!!!   We had about 25 people attend.  It lasted from Friday-Sunday.  We brought the horses up on Thursday to get them ready for all the people.  We wanted to get them acclimated to the weather and climate change, not to mention the new trails.  We had four people come up on Thursday so we took two trips out on the trails with all eight horses.  That one trail that we chose became our one and only trail we used for the entire time we were at camp.  It’s much safer to have the horses on the same identical trail each time so there would be fewer surprises!!  Isn’t that the truth!    Horses are interesting and amazing creatures.  They notice anything that is out of place or different.  That experience taught me even more about the direction of this ministry and the personalities of the horses.  Poor Breehia.  We put her in with Allie in a 10 X 10 pen, and Allie chased her around in a circle much of the time.  I also made the mistake of not only putting my tent right between two of the campsites, which happened to be the two campsites which we kept all of the horses, but also downhill, which I learned was not a good place during a heavy rain storm.    After a few incidents that occurred the first few days, Debbie and I started to pray in the Spirit to quit Satan’s attempts to ruin our camping trip.  We defeated Satan’s attacks, and had a great rest of the trip.   What a learning experience this first camping trip was. 
Here are a few pictures from our 1st Annual Horse Camp:

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Chapter Fourteen – Photo Shoot

Thank goodness Chris had two arenas at the ranch.  We were growing so big that we needed to divide the groups up between the two arenas. 

With the growing interest in the ministry, I knew I needed to create a website.  I found a great webmaster that I knew would create a great website for the ministry.  I really wanted something unique, colorful and fun.  The website is:  We happened to have a photographer as a volunteer who volunteered to do a photo shoot for the website. 

Here are pictures from the photo shoot:

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Chapter Thirteen - The New Barn

Carol, David and I continued to work with the kids and volunteers.  We had a great time.  Even though David was still fighting the cancer, he continued to work with us and the horses.  He is a fighter.  He also has a tremendous amount of faith.  He would always confess that he is healed!!  In fact, I would make sure that only life was talked about in and around the ministry since Life and Death is in the power of the tongue.  It became a discipline in the ministry.  Any deviation from this principle would be strongly addressed.
We started having more kids come out.   Around the same time, Carol was looking for a horse for her own and I was looking for a horse to add to the ministry too.  We had sent Missy off to a retirement facility, because she no longer was able to meet the needs of the ministry.   We  didn’t have enough well trained horses to meet our needs.  I felt I was being led to look for a replacement for Missy.  I found Breehia on Craig’s List for $1500.  She has the most beautiful confirmation, just like what David had been teaching me to look for, plus a young girl had been showing her.  I hoped that she would be a great addition to our ministry.   I was quick to make the decision, and we ended up getting her in the dark that same evening that I found her on Craigs List.   David rode her with his equipment.  She threw her head a lot, but again, he was sure that he could resolve that using a martingale as a training tool.  One thing I did not know was that she had sore feet!!  What I learned later is that since she was bred as a halter horse, which is the beauty pagent for horses, they (the halter horse industry) like the looks of the large muscular body but with small tea cup hooves.  Unfortunately, these small hooves are not big enough to carry the massive muscular bodies which in turn creates sore hooves.
Carol also got a horse named Snickers.  We added her temporarily to the ministry horses in exchange for Board and Care, knowing that we needed more horses suitable for kids.  We added her to the “free barn”.  Now, I had 4 horses I was paying board for and 4 horses I wasn’t.  Plus, David was living for free in the apartment on the ranch.   Chris came up to me and asked if I would just rent the entire “free barn” for $2300.  That would give me 10 stalls.  I decided I would take it because I would get my own tack room (a converted stall), plus when all the people would come out for the ministry, which started to be a lot, we wouldn’t be in the way of Chris’s other paying customers.  The $2300 did not include food or cleaning for the horses.  My budget just jumped up over $1000/month.   I believed that God would continue to provide for the ministry, so I did not let that concern me.  I knew that what I was doing was His plan for me, so I stood on that truth. 
We held a Barn Dedication Ceremony……I wanted to publicly dedicate the new barn and the Ministry to the Lord.  We had a wonderful dinner and dedication with about 30 people attending.  It was a wonderful time.  The Holy Spirit was present.  The Ministry officially became God’s Ministry….not mine.  All I had to do was get out of His way and pray a lot.  In fact, I began to say “Yes” to every request of people wanting to come out and participate not knowing how I was going to work it out.   Not sure if I would have enough horses, if we would be able to accommodate everyone’s needs; when you give something like this to the Lord knowing that it is for Him, the answer should always be “Yes.”  Love is more powerful than fear!!!!  From this point on, I knew that He would be in control of every situation and every challenge that would come up.   My trust and faith in Him is an every moment by moment reality in this Ministry.
Here are pictures from the Barn Dedication Ceremony: