Sunday, February 27, 2011

A Princess’s Birthday Party

Nothing is more delightful than the look on a child's face that has been surprised beyond their imagination. The parents of this little girls birthday party did a great job of making sure that the surprise was indeed surprising. Our Cinderella style princess carriage was stationed just outside the home while all the party goers were shuffled into the garage, told to face the garage door, and to cover their eyes with their hands. The door came up and dad yelled "OK everybody can look now" and the picture above is of the excited faces of the children. You can almost hear their excited squeals when looking at the Cinderella style princess carriage, complete with the sparkling white carriage horse sporting his ostrich feather head plume .

To say that they were happy about the horse drawn carriage rides would be an understatement. Groups of one adult and six children got to ride around the birthday girls Arkansas neighborhood, and wave at the many stunned neighbors that had come out onto their porches to see the unexpected site of a white horse pulling Cinderella's carriage with a load of little princesses aboard. This enchanted evening was as fun for us as it was for the kids I dare to admit.

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Horse’s wearing Nike?

Well...not really Nike, but the equine equivalent to tennis shoes. Having been in the horse industry all my life I pride myself on keeping up on new trends, and better ways of doing things that are always being discovered. Theses hoof boots are one of the innovative ideas that I am really impressed with.

While doing princess carriage rides we are usually working in a mixture of public streets, or private property's. Once in awhile when on the road you will come across debris that you would rather your horse not step on. Broken glass is one. Hence why our horses always wear these protective boots when working. Not only do they offer protection they also allow the horse to go barefoot(without metal horse shoes)when not working which is much healthier for their feet.
Barefoot is a recent trend that has gained popularity with horse owners from all over the world. Barefoot horses receive a special barefoot trim, and/or abrasive hoof trim method utilizing power sanding tools. Coupled with more frequent trims than shod horses, more horses feet these days are being kept healthy, and more natural without the nails required to hold on steel shoes.

Pavement can get hot here in Arkansas, and these boots also provide heat protection, a nice cushion when working on pavement (much like you wearing a good pair of tennis shoes), and are all but invisible in photos. Plus the huge benefit of being able to allow our our carriage horses hooves to be left naturally barefoot when not working. A win, win for everyone concerned. Especially the princess's carriage horses!
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I wanna job like that!

Ahhh the life of one of the princess carriage horses. Since we only do weddings, proms, and other special events in Arkansas our horses only work a few times a month. The rest of the time the horses are in a private pasture totally free to play and relax. They have free access to unlimited hay, extra feed twice a day, warm blankets to wear when its cold, a doctor ( vet) and regular pedicures ( farrier) and even a dental plan when its needed.

Retirement here means going from working a few times a month to no work at all with full benefits. A day of work for them isn't exactly the old grind mill either. While we humans will be working all week to prepare for an event the horses part of the job rarely last more than 3 hours total, and on most jobs a good part of that is standing quietly waiting through photo shoots, ceremony's, dinners, or... that ever famous cue for "here comes the bride".Our horses only travel up to about three miles, and usually much less due to the slowness of a horse drawn vehicle.

Not to mention that during those quiet times alone while waiting for the signal to bring up the princess's carriage, our horses get showered with rubs, pets, and even kisses from our footman who generally is one of my teenage daughters. Our horses have become so spoiled that they will literally turn their heads as soon as we stop to look for their "person". Its quite comical, but also endearing that they have gotten so attached to the idea of constant love and affection at the work place. I wanna job like that!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

A Great Day at the Princess’s Carriage farm


Today was nearly 60 degrees so here at “The Princess’s Carriage” we enjoyed a day outside horsing around. A good friend brought over three of her granddaughters ages six, five ( shown in the picture) and two. The girls had a blast riding horses, petting and brushing horses, and getting cart rides around the farm. Here Aaleigha gets a gentle nuzzle from Duchess after giving the giant horse a kiss on the nose.  

Friday, February 18, 2011

Some of the best kept secrets


Last night found us at Willow Wind event center in Searcy, Ar. for their open house. We dropped off a carriage to add to their landscaping which is Southwestern in style and absolutely breathtaking like the rest of the place. A horse drawn carriage fits right in! At their modest rental prices for events they are without a doubt the best kept secret in all of Arkansas. Talk about a great place for unique and picturesque event photos.

Today found us on the phone with Bobby at Arkansas’s Pro Dj’s. One more of Arkansas best kept secrets! Bobby provides entertainment, lighting, Master of Ceremony services, and of course Disc Jockey’s for all sorts of events and receptions with weddings being a specialty. He was contacting us to get the ins and outs of making sure his clients could be guaranteed a horse and carriage if they so wished to have one. Bobby is on top of things that’s for sure. His enthusiasm is contagious and his desire to please his customers more than apparent. We are really looking forward to the chance to get to work with him.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

We are growing!


Actually I’m talking about our business “The Princess’s Carriage” and not the size of our family. All those children in the picture enjoyed our custom Cinderella carriage for a tiny Princess’s birthday party which is just one of the many things we do here at The Princess’s Carriage. Busy all last year with weddings, birthdays, proposals, anniversaries, ball room dances, quinceaneras, and even some charity work for the Make a Wish folks. The year was ended with our very busy Holiday season that left us exhausted and ready for the winter weather break we are currently enjoying.

Last year we literally could not keep up with the calls we were getting and since our availability is limited we unfortunately had to turn far too many folks away. So this year we are expanding!

We have a new booking agent on board to help out with scheduling, contacts, and keeping everything running smooth. We are excited! Even with two crews there will still be some limitations as to what we can provide, so if your heart is set on a certain carriage ( we have 4 different styles of custom carriages) make sure to book your event early!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


Robbins Sanford 025

You probably are wondering what C.O.N.A. is, right? C.O.N.A. stands for Carriage Operators of North America This year C.O.N.A. is having their annual convention in Memphis, Tenn. This year is the first time it has been anywhere close enough for us to go. We are very excited! C.O.N.A. is not only a great organization the conventions are a great place to get ideas, learn about the industry, and keep up to date on the latest news. We will be joining C.O.N.A. and look forward to enjoying this great organization.

Snow, Snow, and more Snow

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This is Arkansas today. Looks more like Canada if you ask me. Can you believe we have nearly a foot of snow here at “The Princess’s Carriage” our home base and farm in Rose Bud, Arkansas? Drifts outside our back door are up to our knees! The horses love this weather they have been running around and playing like its just the best thing.  Us humans however don’t think its so great. The photos were snapped during their mid day feeding. All the rambunctious play ended abruptly when lunch arrived.