My work takes me to many farms, large and small, fancy or simple. Some of the people I meet have one horse and that horse is their universe. Others breed horses and take pride in the lineage. Some people have a collection of horses with no rhyme or reason to any of them at all.
One of the latest farms I started to work at peaked my interest most of all due to the breed. I am a fan of Cleveland Bays, but I will be honest, my admiration for them has mostly been through reading about them and just plain loving their looks. In some book somewhere when I was a child, I saw a picture of the "ideal" representation of the breed and fell in love. Now, about 20 years later, I own a half CLeveland Bay and all of my expectations have been filled.
Driving down the road that Still Valley Farm is off of, you would never know what hidden jewel you just drove past. Small by breeding quantity standards, SVF makes up by breeding quality Cleveland Bays. SVF has two mares and one stallion. Currently their is a two year old gelding and a yearling filly, plus there is a Morgan/CB yearling.
The mares are getting a refresher course in riding. Through ground driving, I make sure they can steer, stop and most importantly leave the herd. The two mares have different personalities and I can't decide which one I like best! It is important to have a rapport with horses before you jump on and ask them to do something. By the end of the week, they are used to me and a little work, this week I will get on them and safely go.
The Farm may be the ring, but the horses are the jewels. If her Majesty thinks they are good enough for her carriage horses, then they must be good enough for you.
I would like to thank my friend Barbara for taking the pictures!