MEET OUR 2021 SUMMER STAFF

WE ASKED THEM 5 QUESTIONS:

1. What are you up to in your life right now?
2. What is your favorite part of Nature?
3. Who did you look up to when you were a kid?
4. What is the best advice you’ve ever gotten?
5. What is the nerdiest thing you do?


 

THERE ARE STILL JOB OPENINGS FOR SUMMER 2021! LEARN MORE
 

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Nadia Bachman (they/them/theirs)

1. In the fall of 2021 I'll be attending the Aveda Institute, Denver doing a cosmetology course in preparation for doing hair, makeup and nails for weddings.
 

2. My favorite part of Nature is the wildlife, whether it's seeing an elk, or hearing the chirps of birds in the trees.
 

3. When I was a kid, I really looked up to Emma Watson. She's a great actress, singer, and overall a very empowering woman. She stood up and defended women's rights, which I value completely.
 

4. The best advice I have been given is to persevere. Here is a quote from someone I really look up to at the current moment; "Persevere, and you will succeed. You can NEVER give up on yourself, or you will lose before you even start trying."- Dreamwastaken
 

5. The nerdiest thing I do is probably play Minecraft. I've been playing since I was little, starting on pocket edition when it first came out. Playing Minecraft is one of my favorite pastimes.

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Raquel Black (she/her/hers)

1. I am 19 years old. This last year I have taken off school to travel the world and find an adventure. Before I knew it, I was signed up to work at Colorado Mountain Ranch! But until the camp starts, I have been training and riding my horses almost every day. They are my life!
 

2. My favorite part of Nature is how the air smells after the first rain. I also love the fall time when it's still warm but the trees and plants change colors.
 

3. When I was a kid I looked up to my mom. She is my hero!
 

4. The best piece of advice that I have gotten is hard to choose because I've gotten so much over my life. But one piece that I live by is to make your bed every day. I find it helps to organize my thoughts. I start off the day with a completed task already, and even if my room is messy, a made bed makes it look a lot better and it encourages me to tidy up.
 

5. I am a total nerd but one of the nerdiest things I do is play Dungeons and Dragons with my firends. I also love Pokémon and Avatar the Last Airbender.

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Syrina Crockett (she/her/hers)

1. I am in my senior year at the University of Arkansas in Monticello and currently getting my bachelor's degree in animal scinece. I am not quite sure what I want to do with my degree uet, but keeping my options open!
 

2. My favorite part of Nature is how serene it can be.
 

3. I looked up to my grandfather
 

4. You get what you put in. This pushes me to do the best I can in everything in order to get the best results.
 

5. I like to read in my down time.

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Kirk Furey (he/him/his)

1. Working as a barista while also trying to read through my ever growing backlog of books.
 

2. The sounds, especially deep in the woods. Listening to the wind, animals, water from streams. I love just sitting in silence taking it all in.
 

3. My grandmother. She was a fabulous cook and loved throwing huge parties. As a kid I could usually be found in the kitchen watching her prepare dinner and volunteering to help where I could. I still have and use many of her recipe cards to this day.
 

4. That you are good enough right now. There are many ways to grow and learn and work towards who you want to be in the future, but that doesn’t mean that you should put your present self down for not being there yet.
 

5. I love collecting old technology! I have a big interest in analog formats like video and cassette tapes, and I’ve spent the past year tinkering with a 1980s IBM computer and a 1960s stereo receiver.

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Brandon Hansen

(he/him/his)

1. I just moved back to Boulder from Hawaii, and had my first true winter experience in a long time. I am excited to explore the next steps of wherever my life takes me!
 

2. I love how pure nature is, even when it is imperfect, it is still exactly as it should be.
 

3. Mike Walker.
 

4. Have fun and work hard
 

5. I’m super into Marvel comics, specifically Spiderman. 

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Lily Karp

1. I am a student at CU Boulder studying Psychology and Art. I get outside as much as possible, as I love to hike, run, bike, and just chill by the creek.
 

2. TREES! I learn so much by observing how trees function in their ecosystems. The way they communicate with each other and their surrounding organisms through their roots is so fascinating to me. When I sit by a tree, I automatically feel more grounded.
 

3. My teachers
 

4. The best advice I have ever gotten is to never look back. Be here and be now. You can't change the past, you can only control today, which can affect tomorrow.
 

5. My room is covered with all sorts of outer space decorations. I love reading and learning about aliens. I have even written my own short stories about aliens.

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Moony McCoy
(they/them/theirs)

1. I am currently enrolled at Kansas State University earning my degree in Indistrial Design!
 

2. My favorite part of Nature is the changing seasons. I love to imagine winter as a time of rest, and spring to be an awakening into summer, before it all curls up to bed again in the fall.
 

3. My brother, Matt, is five years older than me, and remains a role model to me to this day. I spent a lot of time with him when I was young and before he left for college, maybe even when he didn't want me there! He's a good man, and an incredible brother. I don't think I could have picked a better person to look up to.
 

4. "Everyone has a style, a preference, a way of design. Who are you to judge?"
 

5. It comes as a surprise to some people that I am a huge nerd! I would say the nerdiest thing that I do/have done more than once is watch the entire Lord of the Rings extended edition trilogy and then quote them as they play.

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Anna Pier
(she/her/hers)

1. I start my first year of college at State College of Florida in August. I took a break to travel and find myself, which continues every day. Finding the world and myself in it is my goal.
 

2. Nature is home. A place where you can disconnect from the world and be yourself. the earth is so beautiful and I love to take any opportunity I get to experience it.
 

3. I didn't look up to any one specific person during my childhood, but coming out of high school into adulthood, I look up to Billie Eilish.
 

4. The only person you can truly rely on is yourself.
 

5. I love to watch Stranger Things and Gravity Falls, and I play Pokémon GO and Nintendo Switch.

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Kate Saylor

1. Studying for the MCAT and job hunting again. I am happy to be back at the ranch and I am taking it one day at a time.
 

2. The ability to go and escape, especially during quarantine, being able to go out and feel like I can breathe again is so important.
 

3. The Dixie Chicks. When Natalie Maines spoke out in 2006 about the state of the country and she unapologetically stood up for what she believed and didn’t back down.
 

4. Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.
 

5. Up until now I worked in a lab doing immunotherapy cancer research. And I did marching band and went to band camp.

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Evan Smith (he/him/his)

1. I am starting my third year of college at Texas A&M studying Urban and Regional Planning.
 

2. I think just being out there feeling the fresh air with a friend or someone I don’t know is a great way to spend time.
 

3. I looked up to a football player, Robert Griffin III, who played for Baylor, and now he’s in the NFL.
 

4. Try Everything.
 

5. I actively read Harry Potter books.

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 Michelle Unruh (she/her/hers) 

1. I'm a para at an intermediate school and I work with fourth and fifth graders. This spring I have been turning a minivan into a camper with a bed so I don't have to sleep on the ground anymore when I'm camping!
 

2. I love trees, the sound they make when the winds blow in the summer, fall colors, and the intricate lace work when they are bare in the winter. I really like trees!
 

3. My mom's parents. They were the best grandparents a kid could ask for and even as an adult we still spent lots of time together. Now that I'm a grandma I hope to be just like them.
 

4. Don't delay joy.
 

5. I sometimes carry tree or wildflower books around to identify those I don't know.

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Mattias Bank (he/him/his)

1. I am currently still working with children and taking a couple classes towards a degree to make more options for the future while I work on my passion for filmmaking.
 

2. My favorite part of Nature is the breeze and the quiet, along with the views from CMR.
 

3. When I was a young adult, the people I looked up to the most were Willy Wonnacott, Meghan Barrett, and Josie Walker.
 

4. The best advice I ever got was, "Who cares what other people think, do what you want to do with your life. It's short."
 

5. The nerdiest thing I do is I still watch Magic School Bus sometimes to remind me of my childhood.

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Cherylyn Bohannon (she/her/hers)

1. I have been working on making a lovely bird oasis in my backyard in Wichita, Kansas.
 

2. All of the animals that you get to see when you are outdoors
 

3. My older sisters
 

4. Don’t sweat the small stuff
 

5. Bird watching

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Lakin Fain (she/her/hers)

1. I am a first year student at CU Boulder. I am studying Environmental Design and Fine Arts.
 

2. My favorite part of Nature is the colors that fill our environment. I have a very visual and color oriented perspective. When I'm in Nature I am infatuated by the lighting and the colors that surround us in this natural landscape. being surrounded by such vivid, authentic colors makes me feel alive!
 

3. I have always looked up to my mom. She is the most selfless person I have ever met. She has devoted her life to helping people and always prioritizes other people's needs.
 

4. A piece of advice that I carry with me every day is to "separate the know from the feel." It is easy to overthink and get caught up in little worries. When I identify the facts of a situation, I am grounded to the truth.
 

5. I am the Avett Brothers' biggest fan- My comforter is a collage of all their albums, and posters of them cover my walls. I have been to 12 of their concerts and stood in one spot for seven hours to see them front-row!

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Cassidy Gillard

(she/her/hers)

1. Currently, I am a full time student at Metropolitan State University of Denver, where I am working towards getting my bachelor’s degree in Special Education. I also work full time as a paraeducator in an autism program in BVSD. I spend most of my free time snowboarding and working at the Ranch.
 

2. My Favorite part of Nature is the silhouettes. Every mountainscape on the horizon and tree silhouette is mirrored perfectly by the sky, and I feel the most calm when I can just sit and trace over the ridge of a mountain or around the branches of a tree with my eyes. Also, I love dirt.
 

3.When I was younger I looked up to my sisters and relied on them for basically everything, and I had many teachers whom I idolized (and still do!), and I definitely wouldn’t have become the person I am without them.
 

4. The best advice I’ve ever gotten was from my cousin John Gillard “Take responsibility for the choices you make, and live that way with joy.”
 

5. Read Winnie the Pooh original stories over and over again.

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Mary Hoffman
(she/her/hers)

1. I am currently living and working in Minnesota. I'm working on future plans to work in the horse industry. I believe being a wrangler at the Colorado mountain Ranch is a great way to start my future and also do what I love!
 

2. My favorite part of Nature is feeling the sun and breeze on my skin. It makes me feel free and connected to the ground I live on.
 

3. As a young girl, I looked up to Stacy Westfall. She amazed me with her skills to ride bareback and bridleless, which is something I worked many summers to achieve with my own horse, Tony.
 

4. The best advice I have ever gotten is, everything happens for a reason. you may not see the good in the bad at first but things always work out!
 

5. The nerdiest thing I do is probably when I narrate what I believe my dogs or horses are saying. It makes me happy and also allows me to communicate to myself or others the needs or emotions that my companions are saying.

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Andrew Kopel (he/him/his)

1. I just got licensed as an elementary school teacher in Colorado and I am looking for a job in the Denver area hopefully teaching fourth or fifth grade.
 

2. Trees because they can look really cool and they symbolize a lot of things like growth and survival and dirt because it’s fun
 

3. My older sisters. They’re pretty awesome and have always been very ambitious and driven.
 

4. From my sister: Don’t create expectations for an experience you’re about to have. Instead, do all the prep work you can leading up to in and let the experience wash over you and be what it’s going to be.
 

5. Harry Potter trivia with my family

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Shea Mineau (she/her/hers)

1. I am finishing my first year at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville studying Criminal Justice. I like to spend my free time going on adventures and hanging out with friends. I also enjoy working out and being outdoors.
 

2. My favorite part about Nature is how peaceful it is. Going out and being surrounded by something so peaceful is calming. Nature is full of so many beautiful, wonderful things, there is always something new to find and enjoy. I think the diversity is something that can have a large impact on people and is something we can learn from.
 

3. I have always looked up to my parents. They are the kindest, most hardworking people I know, and growing up I knew I wanted to be like them.
 

4. The best advice I have been given is that "I can." I remind myself that I can do anything I put my mind to, and that I can amaze myself with what I can actually accomplish.
 

5. I geek out over nice lawns and landscaping.

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Chloe Rutstein

1. I am currently living in Orlando, FL, studying Kinesiology at the University of Central Florida. I am working towards obtaining my certifications in athletic training, nutrition, strength and condition, and CPR, so I can begin gaining hands-on experience and expanding my knowledge for what I plan on pursuing (sports physical therapy or open up my own gym facility). I plan on moving out West to Colorado, and getting out of my small town, and I am excited to experience working at Colorado Mountain Ranch this summer. In my free time I enjoy working out, spending time in Nature, traveling, listening to music, and going out with friends.
 

2. My favorite part of Nature is how beautiful, pure, and diverse it is. I love how although it has what we call imperfections, we appreciate it and its immense beauty, and we accept it without judgement. I think we can learn a lot from Nature.
 

3. As a child, I always looked up to my grandma Eileen and grandma Rochelle. My grandma Eileen is practical, strong, and has the most generous and caring heart. My grandma Rochelle is faith-filled, dreamy, and has so much love and unending joy to give no matter the situation. Both of them are very different people, but both illuminate amazing qualities and I am lucky to constantly learn from both of them.
 

4. "Life is happening for you." In times when I feel things do not go the way I planned, I always look to this to be an opportunity to see the good in all that happens, whether it is to redirect me or help me to grow in who I am. It gives me confidence in trusting that everything happens for my good. I remember that whit I do in the tie of my greatest trial can turn it into my greatest triumph, and I always remember that what is happening is merely what is happening, but how I feel about it is all perspective.
 

5. I would say the nerdiest thing I do is re-watch movies or re-read books that I really enjoyed. Some of my favorite movies are Divergent, Spiderman, The Longest Ride, and I Still Believe. Some of my favorite books are Legend, The Hunger Games, and Letting Go.

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Ben Silver (He/him/his)

1. I'm 19 years old and I'm currently living in the San Fransico Bay area. I'm originally from Chicago, IL. I'm currently a college student studying Horticulture (Plant Science). I love being in the water. Boating and water sports are a huge part of my life. Covid has hit everyone very hard, so let's make this summer the best one yet!
 

2. Nature's colors always stun me. From the different colored animals to the amazing variety of plant life. Nature always gives us something to look at.
 

3. Both of my grandfathers had a huge influence on me as a kid. I hope to someday be as happy and successful in life. I was taught how to fish at a pond near my grandfather's house and that's a memory I have never forgotten. Also, gorwing up and going to the city to see what my grandpa does for a living was very inspiring. Bruce Wayne is pretty cool as well...Who doesn't like Batman!?
 

4. Yesterday was history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today's a gift, that's why it's called the present. -Master Oogway
 

5. I used to play Magic the Gathering growing up. To this day I still love that game!

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Britt Starks (she/her/hers)

1. I just finished my first year teaching 6th and 7th graders on Mercer Island in Seattle, and coaching an excellent team of volleyball stars. 
 

2. My favorite part of Nature is its resilience. It disregards everything that is thrown at it and just continues to survive. I feel like people can learn a lot from the way Nature handles its problems.
 

3. My Aunt because she is the most gracious and giving person that I’ve ever met in my life and is constantly trying to make everyone else around her feel safe and comfortable and loved and that is something I aspire to do as I get older.
 

4. My High school Physics teacher had a long list of advice that he always gave us and the best one was Don’t settle. I’m still trying to keep this in mind as I go through life.
 

5. Sometimes I think about how maybe rocks have feelings. When I was a child I would get so upset when I would kick rocks because I was worried that they would get hurt.

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 Belony Walent 

1. I'm going to school and working. 
 

2. I don't have a favorite part, I love all of Nature!
 

3. My dad. He never stops working hard even when he has bad days.
 

4. Don't listen to those who will not help you grow
 

5. Read books!

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Caleb Behunin (he/him/his)

1. I'm transferring from Front Range Community College to University of New South Wales Australia in the Fall in order to pursue my bachelors in Mechanical Engineering.
 

2. The vast nothingness and the silence. I'm big on sharing the relaxed nature of the outdoors with others.
 

3. My biggest influence was probably my Grandpa. He taught me to work hard and expect nothing. Because when there are no expectations, rewards are always precious.
 

4.The world is like a sandbox. you're free to create what you want so don't let the nig kid tell you otherwise.
 

5. I am a big fan of DIY and breathing new life into things that have been forgotten long ago.

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Chiara (Kiwi) Calcao (she/her/hers)

1. Currently I am a first year student at the University of Tampa studying Marine Biology with a focus on sharks and rays. I am also a member of my university's hip hop dance team! At home, I have a baking business that I run with my awesome mom.
 

2. As a biology student, I find interest in every living thing. My favorite part about Nature is that everywhere you look, something is alive! The trees, the grass, the small insects and animals roaming around. in addition, my favorite color is green, so I love looking out and seeing all the different shades of green!
 

3. My mom. She is and will always be my superhero. She taught me how to cook, how to dress, she introduced me to my love for dance, and so many other skills. But most importantly, she taught me how to be resilient, to be strong, to be kind, to be a leader, to always follow my heart, to stay true to myself, and most importantly, be a good human.
 

4. When I was little, I decided to switch to snowboarding. I remember in the beginning, I would fall all the time and I would eventually get upset that I wasn't getting anywhere. After watching me fall so many times, my dad once said to me, "If you're not falling, you're not trying." And after that, I didn't get upset with myself for falling so much. this is such a good piece of advice, because I can apply it to any part of life. I know now that I cannot be successful without a few bumps or failures along the way.
 

5. In my free time, I like to watch Nature documentaries, and any type of film with David Attenborough. I am also a huge theme park goer. I have an annual pass to Busch Gardens in Tampa Bay, and I go at least 3 or 4 times a month during school!

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Jillian Fast (she/her/hers)

1. I'm currently attending UCF as a film major and still figuring out what I want to do in that field.
 

2. My favorite part about Nature is animals and the weather.
 

3. When I was a kid I looked up to Princess Jasmine
 

4. The best advice I ever got was that whenever you feel like criticizing anyone, just remember that all the people in the world haven't had the same advantages as you.
 

5. I think the nerdiest thing I do is read a lot in my spare time.

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Becker Griffin
(he/him/his)

1. I'm currently a senior at Pittsburgh State University in the Graphic Communications program. After graduating in December of this year, I plan on paying off my loans and then entering the carreer field. I may apply to join the Peace Corps for two years, and eventually I'd like to work in the conservation/environmental photography and documentation field!
 

2. There are a lot of things I enjoy about Nature! Mountains, water, all the smells...but I think my favorite might be sunsets. Seeing the changing of colors and shapes in the clouds throughout the process is so entertaining!
 

3. I did and still do look up to my cousin Kyle Obermann. He has been doing conservation photography in China for over four years and has worked there for over six. Someday I hope to join him in the pursuit of documenting environmental movements and conservation efforts!
 

4. Indecision itself is a decision. Listen to your gut. Don't make big decisions late at night!
 

5. Honestly, a lot of things! I love Harry Potter, Star Wars, and Magic the Gathering. I also watch YouTube videos to learn about cars, nutrition, fitness, and lots of other random things!

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Harvey Holman (he/him/his)

1. After graduating from Purdue in May 2020 with a Degree in Chemical Engineering. I took a job as a Junior Consultant in Chicago, only to find out 6 months later that office life DEFINITELY isn't for me. With all my newfound free time I got a job as cook at the Denny's down the street from me, and while the work is hard and that pay isn't nearly as good, I find myself enjoying cooking more and more every day and look forward to becoming the best chef that I can be! And last, but certainly not least, I'm very excited to run the kitchen this summer at CMR and hope to make some tasty treats for all to eat!
 

2. I like that Nature is raw and in your face always.
 

3. I looked up to Carl Sagan.
 

4. Be nice to everybody. You don’t have to be their friend, but at least be nice.
 

5. Calculus and science. 

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Emily Lodge (she/her/hers)

1. Right now I am a senior at Ball State University and will be graduating very shortly!
 

2. Nature is so profoundly beautiful that I cannot begin to explain the depths of why I love it! One thing, though, is that I love helping show people the beauty and experience Nature provides.
 

3. First and foremost, I will always be a kid at heart. With that, I look up to my father. He has been the biggest supporter, guiding me in fatherly wisdom, and loving me unconditionally. I couldn't be more thankful and hope to be able to model what he has taught me in the future.
 

4. Try to remember their last words. This advice teaches me about focusing and being intentional with people.
 

5. I love maps for fun. When I get bored, I can spend hours on Google Earth.

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Emma Norton 

(she/her/hers)

1. I am currently a first year student at Colorado Mesa University studying business.
 

2. I love that Nature has the ability to heal and clear your mind.
 

3. When I was younger I did a school project on Jane Goodall. I was inspired by her close relationship and dedication to animals.
 

4. Learn and explore as much as you can while you're young!
 

5. I listen to science podcasts.

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Ben Ryan (he/him/his)

1. I am currently in college at CU Boulder.
 

2. My favorite part of Nature is its diversity.
 

3. When I was young I looked up to Barack Obama
 

4. Just be happy!
 

5. I do a Gollum impression!

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Ray Sloan (she/her/hers)

1. I have been working as a mental health worker in a residental treatment center for youth in Denver. It was challenging, and rewarding all at the same time.
 

2. I really like running water and just being around it and listening to it. It is very meditative.
 

3. My Grandma on my Mom’s side because she was a watercolor artist for her whole life. She dedicated her whole life to art and being happy and I really looked up to that.
 

4. I’m human and I make mistakes.
 

5. I really like Jazz music and I play string bass.

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 Karen Turocy 

(she/her/hers) 

1. I’m a student at the University of Pittsburgh. I just finished my second year studying computer engineering. 
 

2. The serenity and the beauty.
 

3. Captain America. I thought he had all the good qualities of a human.
 

4. Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.
 

5. I have memorized most of the periodic table and 50 digits of pi.

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 Sunshine Wethington (she/her/hers) 

1. I've been working as a groom at a artificial equine breeding facility in Dripping springs texas, learning all about caring for horses and new born foals, as well as spending my free time outside rollerskating!
 

2. Probably the sounds that Nature makes. When you take a moment to be really mindful and hear each and every sound it is so calm and so loud and I can really get lost in just listening, especially to moving water.
 

3. I looked up to my best friend Hannah. She is the kindest person I’ve ever met and she is so pure and honest. I try to think of how she might handle a situation and it has always helped me think of another perspective and look for the positives.
 

4. When you feel loved and safe, that’s when things begin to change.
 

5. I've been learning how to hula hoop and skate at the same time!!

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