Monday, October 26, 2009

Draw a Pig

Yep, that's what I said...draw a pig!!  Click here and you can draw your very own pig which will then be analyzed to tell you specific personality traits...  Go ahead--I dare you!!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Socks & Kate have Adventures & The Yurt has Walls

We ended up having four days off this weekend and decided to make Kate and the yurt our main goals.  First up...Kate.  We rode her three times this weekend and each time were more and more impressed with her.  Her third ride was our usual four-mile loop that is a pretty easy trek.  We do have to go past three neighbors houses on the way home.  The middle house has vehicles and wood and all sorts of scary things...she didn't even care.  In fact, the only "excitement" was when Emma and Bailey whinnied to us from across the meadow.  She was very excited, calling back and starting to trot.  Usually, trotting entails a bit of encouragement with a crop!

Kate was so great on Thursday and Friday, that I rode her on Saturday.  I really thought it would be weeks before I got on her, but she is the most solid, green-broke horse ever!  I can't wait until she's figured out the program; she's going to be phenomenal!

Here she is with her saddle on, ready to go.  Isn't she cute??

Friday morning we said a tentative goodby to Socks.  He is going to live with Jenny in Garden Valley; if things work out, that will be his new permanent home.  Jenny is looking for a horse to give her confidence, Socks needs a home where he'll be ridden and not have to do endurance rides. 

I thought I was fine with him leaving, until we turned the corner and Jenny came out clapping her hands together, excited to see us arriving with him.  I know that he and Jenny will do great together, but its still bittersweet.  Socks is such a great horse with a huge heart...I'll miss him.

The yurt insulation and walls went much faster than we'd anticipated.  This picture shoes how the insulation comes in pieces (wall piece, window piece, repeat). 

The yurt totally totally wrapped with insulation.

A photo from the inside.  The  "walls" are white and with the wood, it looks so clean and nice.  Hard to tell from the photo, but that window looks out on the pasture where the ponies are...a perfect view!

Almost finished.  The exterior is done, we just have a few screws to put in at the bottom. 

Hopefully, next weekend we'll make a quick trip to Reno and pick up supplies for staining the floor and the few items we need for the inside.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Quilting in the Round...conclusion

This is it; my customer's Hopi Quilt is finished.  Lots of agonizing and planning went into this one and without my friend Shannon's help, I'd still be agonizing.  She helped me alot with design ideas and inspiration and although I didn't do exactly what she'd do, I still think it turned out okay and my customer will  be happy.  Take a look...what do you think??

(if you'd like to view it larger, just click on the picture)

And the back... (hard to see the quilting)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Beautiful Morning...Poor Emma

Went down to feed this morning and the sun was just coming up and hitting the valley floor. This is a shot of our neighbor's house, he's directly across from us and I really hate him in the morning. There's nothing better than sitting on your porch in the early morningsun while you drink that first cup of coffee. But, alas...we get the afternoon sun, so I spend alot of time jealous of his location. On the other hand, though, late summer eves find us on the porch enjoying a margarita in the sun, while he's in the shade.  Guess you can't have everything.

As the title indictes..."Poor Emma." We went down to the pasture Friday morning and she came bucking and kicking out of the trees headed straight for us. When she got close, we saw that she'd somehow managed to take a 6" circle of hide off her butt. It looked awful; no blood, just alot of weepy, naked skin. I have no idea what she did. I've walked the pasture looking for a clump of hair to no avail.

Since Friday afternoon, I've been washing it gently with betadine and applying a topical antiseptic; she isn't pleased. She's been tolerating the doctoring, only tucking her butt under her and trying to move away but never even offering to kick me. She's a very good girl.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Quilting in the Round

This quilt has been a real challenge for me. But thanks to my extremely-talented quilting friend, Shannon, I've gotten some really good ideas. While I'm not quite talented enough to implement them all...this is where I'm at so far:

I still don't have anything in the dark green, but am thinking about just a tiny stipple in that area. I am open to suggestions.

Then there's the pink area that I'm still tryiing to come up with something. This quilt has been a huge mental/design challenge for me!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Yurt...Day 2

We spent all day yesterday just getting the rafters up and the roof on. We started here:

Next came the rafters. This was a bit tricky as the initial scaffolding wasn't high enough and two of the guys helping us hate heights! We eventually got some higher scaffolding and Dennis and one other guy held the dome ring while the guys on the ground connected the rafters to the tension cable on the lattice wall. The rafters had to be connected so that they were evenly spaced to initially keep the dome from crashing to the ground.

After the rafters, the first liner was to go on. I was reading the directions as they guys were doing the majority of the work. Then, as I read further and started poking around, I realized something was very wrong. Notice the difference in the thicknesses of the cable? The thin cable had been wrapped around the lattice and had all the rafters using it for support; however, the thick cable was the correct cable for this job. Hmmmmmm.... A bit of head scratching and it was decided that rather than take the rafters off, we'd just thread the thick cable through, connect it and then remove the thin cable. This worked and after about an hour, we were back on track.

Next came the white liner which shows to the inside behind the rafters.

Then the insulation.

As we were discussing the insulation and wondering if we should tack it down (the directions suggest not doing this part on a windy day; however, since we were expecting a torrential downpour on Monday, it had to be done), a gust of wind came up and blew the insulation off. There was nothing we could do except watch and laugh!

We got the insulation back on top, got the vinyl cover over the insulation and the dome on. This is where we ended last night before the rains. With any luck we'll finish the walls this weekend!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

...and up it goes

We had a good friend and one of our neighbors over today to get started on the yurt. As usual, we didn't get as far as we'd hoped, but we sure had fun. The majority of the day was spent laughing and never even felt like work. We got as far as the lattice and the front door; tomorrow we must finish because Tuesday, its going to rain!

Opening the lattice comes tightly wound, packed like a giant tootsie roll...

Once open, you start at the opposite side from the door and begin spreading it apart...pushing and pulling.

And when its finally open...

it gets attached to the door.

We have several friends coming out today, because now the precarious work starts. First thing, they put the ring up for the dome and start with the rafters...

Thursday, October 8, 2009

I know its only October, but Christmas is coming!

And this year, I'm finally able to get Dennis something he'll love! My friend Debbie told me about a Tanya Amberson who does animal paintings and then donates part of the profit to rescue that is right up my alley. I've commissioned her to do a painting of Hank for Christmas. I sent her about a 1000 photos, which she narrowed down to these three. I choose one, she paints it with whatever background I choose, Dennis has an awesome present, and a rescue makes some money. Its a win, win!!

The hardest thing about the whole situation is that I can't tell him what I'm doing. Do you have any idea how hard it is to keep a secret from your best friend? I've had to stop myself twice already from telling him...I don't know if I can make it all the way to Christmas. *whine, whine*

A few years back I got him an antique schoolhouse clock from E-Bay; he'd been wanting one and I found it for a good deal. It was even in Reno, so I could pick it up. I had an elaborate ruse, we were going to meet the guy and pick it up (but he was just going to give me a small box with a rock in it) and my friend was going to pick up the real clock. I didn't want him guessing when he saw the box. It was perfect...until I said that we couldn't forget to pick up the clock while we were there. "What clock?" he says. So that year every present he opened until the "real" present was some sort of timepiece.