About The Blog

Long Time Equestrians & Equestrian Newbs

Well hello I am glad you stopped by!

My name is Kacey Cleary.

I’m a wife, mom to a busy vehicle obsessed boy, oldest sibling of three, coffee drinking, animal loving, bible believing,  equestrian blogger.

I dabble in painting, digital drawing, photography and videography for fun. And I have been obsessed with horses since I was about 5 years old.

Here at Joyful Equestrian, I want to create the best online horse resource for amateur equestrians of all levels.

I want you to find and keep the joy in your equestrian journey as you continue to improve & learn more about riding and horses!


At Joyful Equestrian you will find:

  • Answers to your horse related & riding questions
  • Tutorials & Guides on handling, horse care, & riding
  • Information about breeds, colors, anatomy, behavior and other horse facts
  • Exercises for horse & rider
  • Fun equestrian lifestyle posts
  • Equestrian Printables
  • & more!

My goal is to help you grow as an equestrian and not just the riding part!

Being an Equestrian is so much more than just riding.

I want to encourage equestrians to :

  • always continue learning
  • keep safety in mind
  • keep the horse’s well-being at the forefront.

Whether you are just getting started with horses or you have been riding for a while.

I want to create horsey content that will help you improve in all aspects of horses, so you can be the best rider and horseman/horsewoman possible!


Qualifications Of Some Sort

  • A.S. in Equine Industries from University Of Massachusetts Amherst.
  • Rode on the UMass Amherst Dressage Team.
  • Instructors License with Massachusetts.
  • Certification With The American Riding Instructors Association- Level 1 Eventing & Dressage.
  • Resident Student Program At Bascule Eventing Farm.

Some Of My Experience As An Equestrian

Here is some of my horse experience. I’m not sharing everything but a handful of things to give you an idea of my equestrian experience.

I am not a top level rider, but I have always been passionate about improving as a horsewoman and equestrian with the opportunities I have available.

I wanted to share this to help better relate with you and also because I think if I am sharing information and teaching about horses I should have enough experience to back what I am sharing.

  • Riding and taking lessons mostly english (dressage, show jumping, eventing, hunter/jumper) since 1998.
  • Working student at Ascot (hunter/jumper), Windkist (hunter/jumper), Winthrop Farm (dressage), Helen Cast Dressage (dressage), Windrush Farm (eventing), Appletree Farm (eventing).
  • Experience being a stable hand, groom, and barn manager.
  • Riding Instructor for over 6 years specializing in balanced riding and building a solid foundation in dressage and jumping.
  • Rented barn and started a horse boarding and riding lesson program (ended it couple years later due to arena not being suitable for lessons in cold weather.)
  • I have leased and free leased 9 plus horses, from thoroughbreds, to a standardbred, to an appaloosa, to a quarter horse.
  • I have owned 6 horses, mostly off the track thoroughbreds with exception of one warmblood.
  • I purchased my first horse myself in 2005 as a 16 year old. She was a 17 year old green ottb broodmare. Was not ideal as a first horse but taught me alot .
  • Volunteered at horse shows.
  • Volunteered at therapeutic riding farms.
  • Worked with green horses, problem horses and untrained horses.
  • Started untrained horses young and older , including untouched babies.
  • Retrained off the track thoroughbreds.
  • Competed at Hunter/Jumper Schooling Shows, Dressage schooling shows as well as 3 Phase Schooling Events through the years.
  • I am not a show rider just competed as a young rider and also when training some horses as a test to where we were at.
  • Schooled cross country up to preliminary level, but majority was taking green horses out schooling cross country between elementary to novice level jumps.

Horses That Influenced My Equestrian Journey

I wanted to give a tribute to the horses that have been in my life that have made an impact on my journey as an equestrian. I am not listing all the horses I have ever encountered, only the ones that made a significant impression on me, because the list would be too long.

I am so thankful to have been able to work with these horses. (STILL WORK IN PROGRESS)

My Own Horses

  • Kyia
  • Calvin
  • Storm
  • Greta
  • Cajun
  • Momo

Lease Horses

  • Stormygirl
  • Tara
  • Marbles
  • Chippy
  • Muffy

Lesson Horses 

  • Boomer
  • Shooby
  • Buddy

Horses I Got To Work With

  • Fever
  • Arizona
  • Maverick
  • Solo
  • Brady
  • Bobby
  • Willow
  • Handy
  • Hagrid
  • Rotwing
  • Riley

Where I Am At Now


Currently my job is as a stay at home mom, and creator for this blog, (which both take a lot more time than one might imagine).

I blog as an outlet to stay connected with horses and the equestrian community .

My world once revolved around horses and my career with horses. But after getting married and having my first kid a lot has changed.

Thankfully, I have been able to lease a horse since my son was around six month old. His name is Chip and he was a semi-retired Quarter Horse, perfect horse for a new mom who wanted an easy going equine partner while getting used to the mom thing.

Update 1:

Three of the fourteen Icelandic horses on the farm.

Unfortunately due to life circumstances and moving away from home to my parents, I recently had to stop the lease. I got to lease Chip from 2018 up to this fall of 2022.

After stopping my lease with Chip. I got the opportunity to work with some Icelandic Horses that need conditioning and do endurance trail riding.

For a good few months, whenever  I got the chance I got to learn about the Icelandic horses and how to ride the Tolt, which is very different from what I was used to. 

I got to ride 4 or 5 different Icelandic Horses and each one felt and responded differently. It was a great experience and I am thankful I got the opportunity.

I now have a new appreciation for the Icelandic Horse. The thing that amazed me the most is how strong they are. They are pretty small and they all carried me no problem. 

Normally I can feel when I am too big on a horse by the horse’s behavior, balance, efforts and ability to stand still and strong when I mount. 

These horses were unfazed. Pretty cool… I always heard Icelandics could hold more weight comfortably despite their size, but now I got to experience that first hand.

Bruni nuzzle!
Bruni saying, “Are you gonna give me a treat or what?”

 Update 2:

Momo hurt again. Poor Momo!

I moved back home and due to money issues can’t lease a horse and due to time constraints can’t work off riding. Luckily I have friends and family with horses. 

So I got some horsey time and riding time  between my family and friends. 

I got to spend time with my previous horse Momo who my friend has owned for around the past 10 years. Unfortunately has been the most accident prone horse ever but also a sweet gentle giant. 17h Grey Thoroughbred.

I got to spend time with my cousin’s horses Susy Q a giant Belgian and her son Shonto or Chonto actually I am not sure how it is spelled… whoops. Also got to ride my cousin’s friesian Jag. It just stinks that they are a little far away, about an hour and twenty minutes. 

Then another one of my friends who lives about 15 minutes away has a couple minnies and two horses Speedy and Muffy that just hang out and don’t do too much. She has two little ones and not much time for her horses other than caring for them. 

Update 3:

Introducing Muffy!

It is now March 2024. I started a lease on my friend’s horse beginning February 2024, which was one I mentioned in the 2nd update Muffy, because she made the lease very affordable to the point I could say yes. She is an 8 year old Gypsy Vanner cross Haflinger mare. She is green with the very basics but hasn’t regularly worked in years.

There is no indoor arena and no arena actually. But they are trying to DIY an area and have gotten started this past summer. The size is around 60×120. It is more like what a trail would be like with rocks everywhere and no footing at this point.

I haven’t been to the barn too much in February, due to Colton who is now 5 years old having to come with me and it being frigid temperatures here in Massachusetts. That and he has never been interested in horses, he has always thought they were boring and prefers the trucks, trailers, ATVs and tractors.

However recently he has been showing more interest in horses. Wanting to groom the minis at the barn and wanting pony rides on Muffy. So I have hope! But I will never push my interest in him and never have. I would rather him choose it.

Anyway, when I have been able to go to the barn. I have been ice picking poop and cleaning her paddock. Then I have been doing simple ground work with her because it has been so icy and slippery. Just things like backing up, turning her hind quarters, lowering her head, flexing her neck side to side. I am probably going to continue to do groundwork with her for a while to work on building trust and communication.

When I first started working with her she could care less about me and would pin her ears and walk away. I was a little discouraged at first. Now the last time I went, which was unfortunately a couple weeks ago because my husband, son and I have been sick with flu and colds, I noticed her attitude towards me has changed significantly.

As I clean her paddock she does her own thing eating hay, walking around, pooping. Then when I am done, I get her halter and from far away I say, “Muffy you want to do something” and I show her the halter. She sees it lifted up in my hand and eagerly walks over putting her head into the halter. 

So it’s nice to see this as she seems to like our time together and wants to do something with me. I am trying to keep our work together easy but progressive, short and positive, ending on a good note.

So that is where I am now. We are still getting over illnesses it is 3-2-24 and I am hoping to make a somewhat regular routine soon to go to barn and work with Muffy.

If your interested you can check out my goals and dreams below for what I hope for in my future equestrian journey.

I will update this section with what is going on with me now.

If your interested you can check out my goals and dreams below for what I hope for in my future equestrian journey.


My Goals And Dreams

Hey, welcome to the part where I lay it all out—the dreams. This isn’t just about what I’ve done or where I am; it’s about where I wish I could go, with all the messy, wild hopes that come with loving horses. Let’s get real: a lot of these dreams might stay just that—dreams.

Life’s not a fairytale, and I know that better than anyone. But dreaming’s free, and it’s a space where I let myself want the big, sometimes impossible things. So here it is, my heart on these pages, sharing the kind of dreams that fuel my love for horses, even if they never come true. Because sometimes, dreaming big is the best way to keep moving forward.

(FYI: ai helped me write this part.)

Current Focus:

  • Leasing Muffy -8 year old Gypsy Vanner cross Haflinger mare
  • Work with other people’s horses, seizing every opportunity that comes my way.
  • Pursue weekly riding lessons once my life permits, reigniting my passion for jumping courses and cross-country eventing (non-competitively, for the sheer joy of it).

Dreams and Aspirations:

  1. Establish My Own Equestrian Haven:
    • Own and reside on a horse farm that might also embrace a homestead lifestyle.
  2. Create Opportunities for Others:
    • Launch a work-to-ride program for individuals unable to afford horse ownership or regular lessons.
    • Develop a therapeutic program to support people facing life’s challenges, offering them solace and joy through interactions with horses .
  3. Contribute to Horse Welfare and Rehabilitation:
    • Operate a farm dedicated to rehabilitating and retraining Off-The-Track Thoroughbreds (OTTBs), leveraging my affinity for their eagerness, energy, and sometimes surprising calmness.

A Living Dream List:

  • This list is an ever-expanding reflection of my passion and dreams in the equestrian world. With so many ideas and aspirations, it captures just the beginning of what I envision for my future with horses.

An Invitation to Dream Together:

  • I’m eager to hear about your horse dreams! If you have aspirations, stories, or dreams you’d like to share, please feel free to reach out. Let’s inspire each other with our equestrian aspirations.
Get In Touch!