Hi, I'm Ashley, and this is my amazing horse, Ginny.
I am a born Mainer, though when I was 2, my family moved to Massachusetts, where I was raised. I grew up on a my great grandfathers farm in the small, western Mass town of Brookfield. I moved back to Maine after falling in love and finishing my enlistment in the Army. My husband's name is Nick and he is a Judicial Marshal for the State of Maine. It took 7 years but I think he is finally starting to be just as fond of horses as I am, though he probably won't admit it. We live on a beautiful farm in western Maine with our 3 wild children, German Shepherd, Arya, a chicken named Clover, and our two mustangs, Ginny and Shadow. My favorite way to spend the day is outside; my kids playing in the mud, while I groom or ride the horses, and then some food on the grill and a campfire. We are definitely homebodies and unless I am on a photoshoot, we are usually home, spending time as a family.
Before you ask, yes, I did name my horse after a Harry Potter character. Besides horses and photography, I think the Harry Potter books were one of my biggest influences and memorable experiences as a kid. It only made sense to name my fiery redhead after Ginny Weasley, Harry's bold, strong, and loyal Love, who's patronus was a horse after all... But enough of my nerdiness for now! Ginny is what I like to call my Soulstang, the mustang version of Heart Horse and Soulmate. Five years later, I am not sure now what spurred me to adopt a mustang. It was always something I wanted to do, but in that moment, with a 4 month old baby, I can't remember what made me say, "I think I want a mustang now." Having sold my beloved belgians to better fit the "stay at home mom" role I was entering, I guess I decided it was time. Horseless, my heart was pretty empty, as every equestrian with horses in their blood will understand, even with my new precious baby.
I dont even remember what made me look all the way in Oregon for a mustang. I do remember picking Ginny because she was a 2 year old and the BLM facility wouldn't ship a yearling. Guess I lucked out there... I adopted her and had her on her way east before even talking to my boyfriend (now husband) about it. He didn't have much of a choice, at that point. I missed horses so much and was so in love with the fiery roan filly with the side-eye, that he could tell me no, and she was coming anyway. When I did talk to him about her, I told him that she was a "pony" for our daughter Maddie... Technically, she was a pony at the time, only 14h... I didn't ask him for help, he just needed to know she was coming. I made sure I had the corral built 6ft high, had her transport arranged and had a stock of hay ready.. And then I waited...
When she arrived, she was a scrawny and dirty beasty. She was wide-eyed, untrusting, and wild. In hindsight, getting an untouched, wild mustang while raising a baby, was probably not the wisest choice I'v ever made but I like to think that some hearts aren't tamed, they run wild until they find something just as wild to run with. Ginny and I found that in each other. From the moment of our first touch, it was like our souls recognized a long lost friend. I know that sounds cheesy and so cliche, but when a wild horse trusts you and puts their faith and respect in you, it creates a bond like nothing you will ever experience. I never knew the connection was possible when I owned domestic breeds. I spent every spare moment with her, determined to make her a proper equine citizen. My horsemanship evolved and completely transformed through training her, and she taught me more than I could ever teach her.
Five years later, I can honestly say that she was exactly the horse I needed at the time. To this day, she is my best friend - always the horse I need at that particular moment. She has been there through some of the biggest tragedies of my life, and also the happiest moments. She has given me back my confidence, challenged me in every way possible, and been so careful with my babies. I have spent every day in absolute awe of her beauty, photographing her every chance I get. I've captured some of the most tender and special moments between her and my children, that I will cherish for a lifetime. I am truly blessed to be loved by this magnificent creature and to have the pictures to look back on as time passes.
You deserve to be able to do the same and it would be my greatest honor to be the one to laugh and cry with you through these heartfelt moments.