Vintage Southern Weddings at Magnolia HIll

Vintage Southern Weddings at Magnolia HIll
Southern Romantic Weddings, Destination Weddings and Receptions at Alda's Magnolia Hill • 5110 Stageoach Road, Little Rock, Arkansas | call: 501-690-2574

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Velvet Noses, The Horses of Magnolia Hill

If you have ever visited Magnolia Hill, you probably met the largest member of our family, "Blue", who is a black French Percheron horse. Blue is quite friendly, loves attention and LOVES to have his picture made.   

 Delilah is our alpha horse. She lets Blue know when he can come to the barn, or Delilah will run him off if he is getting too much attention. Just like people, horses respond best to kindness. Here, Blue is hiding behind the tree. Horses even though they are such big animals are quite sensitive and they usually respond well to whispers and gentle touches.  



I have always known that my beloved dogs had cold noses, and it seems like one of my two boys often has a running nose…. but horses, they have velvet noses. I grew up a city girl, and had the pleasure of riding only on rare occasion.  My husband grew up with horses and even spent several nights in the barn waiting as he helped to birth his own colt. I never knew how wonderful the smooth velvety nose of a horse could feel against my cheek as I grew to love them, and they grew to love me. Our two horses are  Draft breed horses.  Delilah, our main carriage horse is an English Suffolk.   

  (Lori Sparkman Photography) The snow is no bother at all to the horses with their thick winter coat. Our brave bride had her portrait in the snow with a bit of help from our son.

 No matter what kind of horse, God has created each one amazing different in looks and personality, for just like people, no two are alike. Blue loves to have his picture taken. His black color is perfect to contrast a beautiful bride and white gown.
portrait by Ashley Diggs Photography
Your horse loves you; not for your looks, but for your love!
He knows when you're happy
He knows when you're comfortable
He knows when you're confident
And he ALWAYS knows when you have carrots
~Author unknown
            I once saw a poster of a little Amish boy kissing his horse that said, “Learn to enjoy the little things – there are just so many of them.”  My daily visit with the horses is one of my favorite “little things.” As I unlatch the gate, Delilah is always there to greet me, and she gets ever so close to me and smells my jacket. Usually there is a treat in my pocket. A horse has a keen since of smell.

Notice in all of our bridal portraits, there are no bouquets...for they are only a tasty treat to a horse!

 Over the years I have bonded with this great   horse, and even though she looks so majestic, she is as sweet as a kitten.  She knows I will scratch the special spot on her neck that feels so good. Blue stands back impatiently waiting for he knows he will have to wait to get a carrot.  Sometimes it is just the little things that bring such inspiration in my day.
            I pushed the gate closed behind me and refastened the latch. As I slid in the pasture and looked over my shoulder, I expected Blue to follow me but he didn’t. He was so preoccupied with something, and he swished and flicked his tail wildly.  Stomping his foot, he continued to be in distress. Trying to understand what was going on, it was then I noticed a horsefly buzzing overhead. Finally the horsefly lit on Blue’s back and standing on my tiptoes, I could swat it. Needless to say, I was extremely cautious, for this muscular great black horse had a look of fear in his eyes. The horse fly that could leave a nasty bite was now eliminated by my lucky hit and lay on the ground motionless. I scratched Blues’ back and he relaxed into my chest without his fear, knowing this pest was eliminated.

Blue and Delilah begin their mornings in the fresh green grass pasture behind our lake. By mid morning, they are ready to come back to the barn for a drink of water and  a morning nap.
“Horses have taught me a kind of meditation that’s possible when you’re acting as one and communicating instinctively without words.”    
                                                              _   Robert Redford 

Wedding Day....Delilah has a bath, her hair is braided, and roses around her neck and toenails polished. Her silver harness is custom fitted for comfort. I think she knows, all eyes are on her as she approaches.  She has the most important job of bringing our bride and her father to the altar.
Delilah knows she looks good on wedding day. With her sturdy build, the carriage is an easy pull for this draft horse.

Here an award winning photo by SkyTouchPhotos.  We love it when brides want to have their portrait with our horses.

 On My Bookshelf:
Monty Roberts spent more than a year on the New York Times best seller list for he is the best selling author of "The Man Who Listens to Horses” that sold more than 4.6 million copies worldwide. The movie “The Horse Whisper” starring Robert Redford was based on Monty’s love of horses. His book was hailed by the San Francisco Chronicle as "the kind of life altering book you never want to finish". He has also written "Shy Boy" The Horse That Came In From The Wild. 
Monty grew up in California at his parent’s equestrian center where his father's brutal methods of breaking horses horrified him.     Through observation and a burning desire for a better, kinder way, Monty developed new training methods, which he found could produce amazing results.  Horses that were thought to be impossible to ride or handle including priceless show horses, and racehorses had their problems solved with his gentle and kind methods. 
He sends his message to horse handlers and horse lovers to use kindness as the treatment of all horses, regardless of their discipline. The horse’s safety and comfort is Monty’s highest concern.

So we too, at Magnolia Hill. Our horses are lovingly cared for and members of our family. Just like people, animals respond to abundant love!
Velvet Noses, Harvest House Publishers, by Alda Ellis

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