“I met Wendy Bauwens few years ago in Wickenburg and became intrigued when she told me about her Norwegian Fjords, the name alone sounded magical. I didn’t grow up around horses and was thrown off as an adult. I had been wanting my grandchildren to have some early exposure to horses, so they would grow up comfortable around them and the Norwegian Fjords at Sunnyside Farms seemed like the place to start. The bond grew quickly between the grandchildren, Ms. Wendy and these gentle steeds and was heartwarming to observe. It wasn’t so much about the riding as it was about the interactions between the mares, their foals and the patient and thoughtful instructions from Ms. Wendy as the children brushed and groomed the horses and discussed their qualities and gentle temperament. From a distance, I thoroughly enjoyed listening to Ms. Wendy answers to the young ones’ questions about horse anatomy and the ways of things: “how do you know when the baby will come; why do we braid the tail; and how does the baby know which one their mama is?”
Our grandkids are ages 12, 9, 7, and 9 months and they have had to face some challenges, but when my husband and I see them with Ms. Wendy and her Fjords our hearts are full of happiness. And, there is no happier time than when there are new foals…that is when the real fun begins. There is petting and cuddling with furry white newborns followed by some rambunctiousness, like getting a foal to play with a giant soccer ball around the pen.
When the kids do ride, it isn’t like anything I could ever have imagined! They start bareback, sitting forwards, backwards, and sideways, with hands in the air. This has helped them gain confidence and balance on the horses. They are now starting to trot in English and Western saddles with nice straight backs. They look so self-assured and focused. The children’s time at Sunnyside is so fun to observe that we often end up with an entourage of friends and family who just want to come watch, and of course pet the Norwegian Fjords. I feel like there is something medicinal that happens for all of us, even for the older visitors who join us. Warm smiles light up our eyes and we tend to linger until sunset to give that one last caress of love to one of Ms. Wendy’s Fjords. Thank you, Ms. Wendy!”
– Grandma P., Wickenburg, Arizona
“My children have fallen in love! Wendy is a remarkable trainer.” – Lyndsey B., Wickenburg, Arizona
“Spending three-plus days at Sunnyside Farms was a once-in-a-lifetime experience for the entire Dix O’hana and one that Hiro in particular will never forget—mahalo nui loa for making us feel so much at home with you, your friends and, of course, all of your wonderful four-legged, three-legged and two-legged companions.”
– Chris D., Honolulu, Hawai’i
“I discovered Wendy after searching for a female driving trainer. She was gracious, informative and friendly so I made arrangements to work with her at her winter farm location outside of Wickenburg, AZ. She introduced me to her Norwegian Fjord Horses and I fell in love. We hitched up her stallion, Smedsmo Gråen and went for a drive. I soon realized the magic of the Fjord. They are such beautiful, wonderful, calm, gentle, and easy going horses. Wendy and Smedsmo showed me the basics to driving and it wasn’t long before I was able to take the reins. Wendy’s focus in on safety which is very helpful when you will be driving solo. She is knowledgeable, approachable, prompt, and hard working. Her programs are something that I can support and her horses are outstanding.”
– Sunny T., Kaycee, Wyoming
“I met Wendy 5 years ago when I purchased my first Fjord from her. I have never looked back! Wendy has always been there for me and my horses! I email her with questions and get back quick responses. She is like a sister to me. She has helped me thru good times and hard times. What I admire most is her passion for therapy work through horses and her ability to communicate so clearly her passion. Wendy has an unbridled love for helping folks through therapy riding and driving. She is the best!!
I also admire her deep love for the Norwegian Fjord Horse. Wendy respects the need of “new blood” coming directly from “The Old Country” in Norway. She traveled to Norway to purchase Fjords just for that.
The equestrian community desperately needs more Wendy’s in it’s world!”
– Carol L., Sebastapol, California