How The Filly Got Her Name

During the Pony UP! for J.E.E.P. Fundraiser two weeks ago, event-goers got a chance to bid in the “Name the Filly” Live Auction. The lucky winner would give this little rescue horse her name, and a new beginning. My dear husband, David, bid on the filly and “won” the naming rights. And bless his heart, he passed this honor on to me.

The following week, I arranged for our Compadres Adan and Rosalva and their kids to meet us up the hill at the stables at Los Compadres Resort. I invited some of the J.E.E.P. Team to join us for our little surprise. My Mom and her friend, Don, were also in town at the time, which made this occasion even more special.

Here’s the story of “how the filly got her name”…

When George and Loretta asked for my help with the J.E.E.P. project a few weeks ago, I couldn’t say no. Immediately, it became a hugely emotional project, and losing Chance (the filly’s big brother) so soon was a shock that challenged everyone involved. It was something David, myself and the rest of the J.E.E.P. Team were not prepared to deal with emotionally. The connection we had to this horse in just a few days was overwhelming.

Like the filly, I too am the littlest in the herd. And because she no longer has a family, her name needs to be special and meaningful and strong.

Unlike the filly, I do have a family… I have a 92-year-old grandma who I adore, an incredible mother who is one of my very best friends, a wonderful father, a loving sister and an amazing husband. And when I married David, I inherited two children and three grandchildren by proxy.

And while I do not have children of my own, I do have two rescue dogs (Taco and Panchito) who allow me to fulfill my motherly instincts.

I am also blessed with five godchildren. Their names are Alexa, Lucas and Maddy in the US… and Adansito and Allyson, my namesake, here in Mexico.

The way I see it, Chance saved the others in his herd. He was the leader of the pack and the “heart” of this project. To me, the little filly is the “soul.” She is the one who will carry on in honor of her big brother Chance and in his spirit.

The first letters of my godchildren’s names spell “Alma,” which in Spanish means “soul.”

As George and Loretta will attest, I am scared to death of horses. But being connected to this little filly will give David and I an opportunity to learn more about them and to spend some quality time with our dear friends up the hill at Los Compadres Resort. It will also allow us to introduce horses to our godchildren, which for me, is an opportunity to give this little filly a forever family.

Welcome to the family “Alma.”

Here are a few photos from that afternoon…

Alma meets her new family: David, myself and our godchildren Adansito and Allyson. (top photo) George Leavitt, J.E.E.P. founder, holds Alma’s halter as I attempt to explain our surprise to our godchildren in Spanish.

Adansito and Allyson sit on Flash, one of George and Loretta’s personal horses. This was our godchildren’s very first time on a horse.
(Above photos by Tosia Archer)

Tracy Holmes, Allyson and I take a quiet moment to admire Alma.
(Photo by Dan Cormier)

To learn more about the J.E.E.P. project, their initial horse rescue, stories about “Chance” and information about their first fundraiser, visit the Hilltop Refugio / Jaltemba Equine Education Project community webpage. You can make a donation to the organization there as well.

This story was written by one of our regular contributors. If you want to join in and share information, stories and photos of Jaltemba Bay, Mexico, please email them to

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3 Reviews on “How The Filly Got Her Name”

  1. :

    ALMA!!!! What a wonderful name. AND, it will never be spoken or thought of without the flash of memory of every word that you have so beautifully written. Animals of all kinds shapes color and sizes are GIFTS to each and every one of us. Not everyone thinks that way. But to those of us that do, stories like this, KEEP SOME OF THE LESS FORTUNATE ALIVE. These stories warm and make aware more and more people. These children and all involved in this wonderful project will never forget! For all the people that have reached out and helped, Thank YOU. To the Horses that have survived, may they never ever experience another bad day, for those, lost, we will not forget and may it never happen again. Yea for ALMA

  2. :

    I second those comments..sounds like a wonderful introduction to horses for you. I love her new name!

  3. :

    I read your article on naming the filly and your reference to Chance. You are a beautiful writer and your article was very emotional for me. I never met Chance but his loss made me cry and I feel very emotional whenever he is referred to. I can only assume the toll it took upon all of you who had the privilege to have met such a wonderful horse so full of heart. I am so thankful that he was finally given some love and compassion but it does seem unfair that he had to go. Thank you for sharing a very touching story.

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