here’s props to sassy sara for keeping the horses on a workout rotation
whilst i am out of commission.
tireachan was a well-mannered gentleman,
highly respectful and very attentive to subtle cues.
a grazing celebration was certainly in order.
** oops. forgot the lunge whip out in the round pen. **
ha ha, pun intended!
i sort of missed summer,
so when i woke up last week and realized it was fall
it was a bittersweet moment.
i actually love living in capris and flip flops,
and when the heat kicked on as the temperature dropped
perilously close to freezing
i found myself digging out the sheepskin lined boots
and woolen blankets.
colorado is known for its weather extremes
and sure enough we’ve had warm days since.
that, combined with about ten inches of rain
in the last month,
has the landscape puzzled as new spring green grasses
burst forth from dark, harvested fields
and the deck plants riotously launch new flower stems
topped with jewel toned flowers.
such a tease!
i figured it was time to catch up on what’s been keeping me
away from the computer lately
and show you what’s been going on.
i’ve grown increasingly mobile,
and can now make it out to the back of the property…
just give me an hour.
brandt made the first trip with me and picked an enormous alfalfa bouquet
that was about four times this size by the time we got it back to the horses.
they are not spoiled…
the garden is winding down,
and despite the neglect it suffered this summer with all that went on
it managed to feed us nicely.
at last week’s sunday family potluck
we were all asked to label our margarita cups…
so i did.
our little junior horsewoman came out for another training session,
and given her pick of who she’d like to work with chose sunny and meadbh.
sunny has a soft spot for the kids,
which is apparently mutual.
auntie jill, who just happens to be the kids’ PE teacher at school,
has kindly offered to bring the kids over after school once a week
while the weather holds.
i’m sure that several of you could caption this photo in a way that would get a good laugh out of me.
feel free to in the comments…
the next two are the stuff that horse-owning grandparents dream of:
too bad that oma was still hobbling in with the darned walker and couldn’t take these herself…
thanks, auntie sara.
now, i ask you– does this strike you as a fall photo?
ok, maybe the angle of light gives it away.
i pay attention to stuff like that.
the following series of grainy photos were taken last night
in a sudden burst of studio conversion madness:
all i said was, “we should insulate just one short wall of the barn and put up wallboard to see how it will look…”
then the tribe was on it.
these two “christies”– yes, that’s their name, but they each spell it differently
which leads to no confusion whatsoever,
helped in the capacity of ‘gofers’–
gofer wine, gofer pizza,
gofer peppermint candies to crush and put along the baseboard to discourage mice (?!)
gofer hot tamales…
they are critical team players.
this allowed the construction engineers to proceed in rapid fashion.
they had a great supervisor.
(boy are they glad that i can now do stairs!)
because without that there would not be another length of insulation
stuffed behind (hah!) the top of the wallboards!
in retaliation they forced me to pose for photos after we cleaned up.
this one is the “ha ha, now BRING BACK THE CRUTCHES!!!!” pose.
i could have spent the night up there…
so, today i decided it was “hi ho, hi ho– time to get back to work!” with the horses.
it’s miss rose!
although skeptical of my clanking gait,
she submitted to a round of dolling up.
her eyes ALWAYS intrigue me,
and you need to click on this photo–
i captured a fly IN FLIGHT in front of her
and its shadow on her face.
i’d like to say that was skill,
but skill is not how or why i take pictures.
this is a surprise.
this is a face that believes there might be carrots in a pocket somewhere…
and this is the slobbery smile that now contains said carrot.
this girl has a forelock that has no rivals.
all in all, it was a wonderful afternoon of fluffy clouds and fuzzy ears–
just my kind of day!
oh! one more thing–
one of the newbie chicks has reached henhood,
and is rewarding us daily with lovely rich brown eggs.
i’m not certain exactly which one it is,
but my money is on coco,
the cuckoo maran that wore a startled expression at the edge of the nesting box last week.
one can only imagine.
be well, friends!
last year was pivotal for me in many ways.
something was telling me to be brave, to embrace change, and to be open to possibility.
that ‘something’, it turns out, was my intuition, and i followed it.
i’m so glad i did, because it set in motion a series of possibilities that i couldn’t even have imagined!
one of the first decisions i made was enrolling in flora bowley’s bloom true e-course,
a five-week online program with daily posts monday through friday.
it was life altering.
that’s a bold statement to make for an online course,
but i say it sincerely.
bloom true is not a rapid-fire series of art techniques,
but a whole new approach to painting that applies equally to all of life.
flora is warm, engaging, soulful, and inspiring,
and the videos embedded in each lesson make one feel as if
a dear friend is in the room personally encouraging one through the process.
take a look at this brief clip:
now, in an admission of startling honesty,
i’ll tell you that while i did get several layers of paint on two large canvases,
i did not get the paintings completed.
if you remember, in roughly a 24 hour period last summer we found our wonderland farm
at the very first place we visited,
brought the family members out to see it,
and signed the contract.
the paints were packed away for the move
and we made the huge transition from city life to country life.
however, in the midst of the madness,
i never missed one of flora’s posts.
in fact, her unique approach to life through her painting process
buoyed me up throughout the transition.
at the end of class, when asked for feedback,
i could honestly say, “had i never picked up a paintbrush,
this class would have been worth its weight in gold!”
when past participants were invited to participate in the affiliate program for bloom true,
i immediately signed up.
this is NOT something i would have done in the past–
i would have thought about it,
which for me has so often resulted in inaction.
but i’ve given that up!
now i follow my intuition and take action when something feels right,
and my life is so much richer for it!
should you decide that this program is a good fit for you and register through my link,
i will receive a portion of that fee at the end of class.
but, perhaps more importantly, should you decide to register
you will be taking the class WITH ME!!
flora has shot all new video for the session that begins on september 30,
and i have decided that i would very much enjoy the chance to do it all again!
isn’t that the ultimate recommendation?!
sure, september 30 is right around the corner,
but that means that the energy and excitement that you feel upon registering
will be almost immediately rewarded with the beginning of class!
are you ready to let go of expectations and follow your intuition
to a world of possibility?
then be brave, click HERE , and join me in an adventure that will have you saying,
“my life is so much richer for it”!
seize from every moment its unique novelty, and do not prepare your joys.
p.s. want to watch flora create a painting on canvas?
want to read flora’s awesome book that encourages you to let go, be bold, and unfold?
then you must read Brave Intuitive Painting as i have done THREE times already
and will most certainly read again!
it’s become a handbook for my brave, exciting life!
go HERE and click the fuschia “book” box at the top!
after five hours of additional rain on sunday
we have finally begun to dry out from the 8 1/2 inches of rain
we received within six days.
i cannot stress how fortunate we feel that we were spared
the brunt of the storm.
so many coloradans have lost their homes
or sustained considerable damage
and have no flood insurance to help them recover.
there have been heroic rescues,
athletic teams turned out in force to assist in cleanup,
along with kind and generous gifts of apprepreciation
in the form of meals, hot beverages, and plates of cookies
from local citizens to law enforcement officers and the national guard personnel
who gave tirelessly of their time over the past many days.
i’d like to add my own
**thank you** –
it was comforting to know you were there.
although we sustained no flood damage,
we did have animals who spent many a wet and chilly night
slogging through the mud with minimal attention
other than daily feeding and pen cleaning.
sara declared a “horse brushing party” on tuesday,
and a diligent team of three brought each horse and donkey
into the “spa” for a good grooming!
thanks, sara, jill, and kristi!!
johnny walker and i were present in the capacity
of photographer and carrot-doler.
first came sunny and si gaoithe.
although it would have taken a hosing to rinse the mud off completely,
no one was game for an additional drop of water to hit the ground!
then came tireachan and rose.
there were no complaints.
since johnny and i were trudging across the yard to do other things
between sets, i accidentally missed a couple after this.*
when i got back it was meadbh and otis.
last, but not least, was sam.
*since i was a bit perplexed at having missed my chance at giving some love
to a couple of herd members,
jill-the-good-sport went and and haltered them and brought them back in to see me:
cormac mac airt
sara tossed in a gratuitious shot of sam as well.
to be honest, if you want to be a member of this family you must be able to take a little ribbing…
we had the sunday potluck that evening, due to weather delay.
the girls had a great time giving me the business over my green tights.
sara took off with her kermit the frog routine,
and jill snickeringly referred to me as elphaba.
gosh, i love them!
even logan got into the act with johnny walker:
that’s ok– i got even.
keep in mind that although the sun was shining, we had just gotten
8 1/2 inches of rain,
some of which remained in the chair cushions:
in this case, he who laughs last really has sore ribs.
what follows are excerpts from a series of what rehab patients do
when they sit around and get antsy while everyone else is off being busy:
either take shameless self-photos or alter existing photos.
me in my “cocoon of comfort”–
a borrowed recliner with a deep, plush sheepskin that enables
me to sleep through the night pain-free.
johnny walker and i posing during the dance competition.
a tree by the sea photo from this past summer that i altered with autopainter HD on the iPad,
and numerous alterations of a photo of miss rose that you’ve already seen:
coming up soon (tomorrow, i hope):
are you passionate about color?
do you love the idea of painting with abandon (as in, making no mistakes)?
could you benefit from a shift in perspective that would bring freedom, enthusiasm,
creativity and PLAY back into your life?
tune in here.
i have a great idea for you!!
oh, they are so altered…
each day i awaken and wonder at what my day will hold,
what new and unexpected turn it may take.
on hold are the days of list-making/achievement-seeking/accomplishment,
and in their place have been days of isolation, dependency, and limitations.
my main focus now is healing,
and i’m doing a rather nice job, methinks.
i’m sitting upstairs at the computer typing this post–
did you get the “upstairs” part?
the home physical therapist coached me on the stairs this week,
and i did it easily.
i must admit, i was excited about that.
it allows me access to my art studio and to my digital photography studio,
so i can resume some creative activity.
the biggest hole in my day is spending time with the horses,
something that will have a wait a bit yet.
physically i have made it out to the pens to give them some lovin’,
but that is on hold temporarily due to weather.
perhaps you’ve heard we’ve had some heavy rains here?
heavy as in ‘wide-spread flooding, road closures,
declared a national disaster area’ rains.
boulder county is an absolute mess,
and longmont was literally a city divided by the raging floodwaters
right through the middle of town.
the road we live on is closed because it is washed out to the north
and to the south of us.
we’re lucky– our little wonderland is sitting high and dry,
muddy, yes, but no standing water.
our biggest inconvenience is that we received the alert to boil all water for
drinking, cooking, and dishwashing.
this makes me glad that i do have someone here with me all the time,
because i’d have a little trouble lugging pots of water between
the sink and the stove.
it’s a helpful side-effect that a solid week of school closures
makes the whole family available to help out.
i do love my peeps.
there are a few things i’d like to share,
starting with the surprise laying of subfloor in the barn studio
by my tribe the weekend after i got home.
thank goodness they texted me these images so i could “see” it happen!
yes, i do love my tribe.
you saw the bare bones of the studio,
so here is the subfloor after being carried up:
after the work has begun:
and upon completion:
note that all the random framing for past uses has been cleared out and the floor is wide open!
now, go ahead and squint…
can you picture the french doors straight ahead
to let in vast amounts of natural light and fresh air?
then comes the spraying of insulation,
some kind of wall board (undecided),
and spray painting the walls and ceilings.
one end is for easel work,
the other end for furniture work.
we’ll build some framed platforms in various sizes
to allow us to elevate pieces of furniture in process.
apparently the get-well-soonies are doing the job:
i’m raring to go!!
here are a couple shots of rose and me the day i came home
that didn’t make it into the last blog post:
i looked rather like poo that day so i cropped myself out of most of them
and altered the rest.
walking down the drive to the corner of the horse pen i had a little help
getting the horses to stand still enough to take a picture (or perhaps several…)
you can smell the anticipation when they saw the girls heading for the alfalfa field!
although the horses all get along quite well and enjoy each other’s company,
this mother/son pair are perhaps the closest friends among our herd of seven.
what follows is a rather hilarious series on the power of FOOD with horses:
with all due respect, mother, this bunch is clearly meant for ME.
aah, this is equity in action. we like it.
** thanks **
ahem. excuse me?
later that evening i wandered out to the baby pen as feeding began.
cormac was the first to come over, despite the disctaction of dinner…
he has the sweetest dispostion– i think you can see that in his eyes.
mama was watching over the fence.
i think she would have come over if she could have.
then meadbh came over, too.
it was pure delight to feel their soft baby muzzles in my hands again.
once the big horses had been fed, however,
the distraction was just too great and they had to go pace the fenceline
until their dinner arrived.
after this the rains came,
so i missed out on trekking over to the pens for a few days.
yesterday, though, the sun came out!!
i sat out on the deck with sara and looked at shadow patterns on the lawn
for the first time in four days.
and despite an evening shower,
we were blessed with a brilliant golden sunset.
today has been a good day.
i’ve done some light housekeeping, cooked my own breakfast,
watered plants, and completed a blog post,
along with a brief trip into town for ice cream and flood surveillance.
in fact, i may just be transitioning back towards accomplishment.
well, who knew?!
look who got herself upstairs in the barn to check out the new subfloor
in the studio conversion!
yup, definitely kicking it up a notch!
life is good–
thanks for being a part of it!
This is an update to the post I made on Tuesday– you, know, the band of gypsies and a little paint? Well, my day ended on a slightly different note. I tried alluding to that through comments, but either through faulty technological connections or drugged brain connections I have been unable to do so. Here’s the scoop: I am in the hospital with a pelvis fractured in multiple places and three broken ribs. Have a couple of colorful hematomas, too, given my love for color. The good news is that the tube in my collapsed lung came out yesterday and that seems to be doing fine. The rest of the healing will follow, I’m convinced of that.
You can thank me later for not including photos in this blog post. I’m also happy to accept thanks in the comment section, because this experience has been less than fun and words of encouragement will NOT fall on deaf ears. I could use them for certain.