Amie and Millie, photo by Sundee Rickey

How and when did you first get involved with horses? Do you have one now you want to tell us about? Our family bought its first Morgan when I was in 3rd or 4th grade. His name was Abner and he was the kindest, most gentle horse! We used to go visit him on weekends at the stables close to our house in Southern California. I loved grooming him and riding him in the arena. Eventually we purchased some ranch property and acquired a few more horses. I have fond memories of trail riding and even participated with Abner in a few horse shows. A few years later my dad bought my sister and I our own horse – a Welsh pony named Ace. We loved him and would spend all our free time with him until we started taking more of an interest in boys and sports. Sadly I do not own a horse now, which is why I love my SAFE horses : )

What do you like most about volunteering with SAFE? I just love the energy being around the horses at SAFE – they all have such unique personalities and stories!! Before I found SAFE, I was having these dreams about horses and realized that somehow, some way I needed to be around them again. I started searching the internet for opportunities to volunteer and found SAFE. I feel so blessed to be a part of the Wednesday a.m. crew! I look forward to seeing them as much as I do all the horses!

Do you have a favorite SAFE horse? If so, why? It’s hard to pick one horse – I fall in love with all of them! I remember when the draft horses Moon and Slim arrived at SAFE. I was so in awe of their size and gentle demeanor. I would go out to their paddock after I was done with my chores and just hang with them. I was so happy when Moon found her forever home and cried a river of tears when Slim had to be put down. It goes without saying though that I have an immense amount of respect for the difficult decisions that sometimes have to be made in the best interest of the horses here at SAFE. Then there’s Cyrus. When he first arrived at SAFE, I had never seen a horse so malnourished!! It was disturbing. But, as the months went by and he started putting on weight and coming out of his shell you could see just how beautiful he was! I was so drawn to him. I’m so glad he is back. I know it won’t be long before someone scoops him up!!

What do you do when you are not horsing around with us? I love spending time with my family! I’m so fortunate that my daughter (employed at DocuSign) and son (attending UW) both live close by. We are a super tight-knit family. I also love practicing yoga, skiing, hiking, traveling the world and getting together with friends.

Photo by Sundee Rickey

Do you have family or special people in your life who support your volunteer work that you would want us to mention in your write up? I am thankful that my husband and kids support my desire to spend time at SAFE. They always reach out midday on Wednesdays to see how my time was with the horses and look forward to getting pics….. With everything going on in our crazy pandemic world right now, SAFE is definitely my “sweet spot” for sure!