Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sunday Stills Challenge - Landscapes and Fall Foliage

I love fall! I love watching trees turn and seeing all the colors. It's my favorite time of year. Other then the frosty mornings. I'm really not ready for frost and cold again. It seems like we were just here.

Regardless, the colors are beautiful. Unfortunately, the weather and my schedule did not cooperate this week at all. It has been cloudy and gray all week so that combined with the 20 seconds of daylight I have when I get home from work, getting pics for this challenge just wasn't looking promising. Then yesterday I got lucky! It was still cloudy and foggy most of the morning, but when I came home from running some errands I noticed the mountain was peeking out just enough and the sun was shining on this lone little maple tree at the bottom of our property. Of course the tree is somewhat past it's color turning glory, but I think it's still pretty.

Happy fall!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Kitten Update!

I realized I haven't done an update on the kittens in quite a while so here's what they've been up to. They are getting big! Well, bigger. I think they will stay pretty small cats though. They are growing up quickly. I got over my over-protective tendencies and have been kicking them outside all day. I think they like it, they aren't terribly anxious to get back in when I get home.

They are really good tree climbers. Too good, actually. They love it and they won't stop. The turkeys.

This was Chunks first tree climbing experience. We left for a bit one day and when we got home she was up the tree meowing pathetically.

See her peeking out? She was quite a ways up the tree. In the picture below you can see her little face about a quarter of the way down the pic next to the wire. She was probably 30-40 feet up.

I made the boyfriend climb up the tree and get her down before it got dark. The next day she climbed it again. I told her she had to figure it out this time, she only got one get out of jail free pass. She was down just after dark. Smart kitty!

Legs on the other hand...apparently not so smart. She was climbing trees the whole time I was out holding horses for the shoer a couple weeks ago. She would meow like she was stuck for a while, but always figured out a way to get down. Then she got stuck. We figured she could find a way to get down on her own, but she never did. She spent the night in the tree. Poor thing. Must have been a miserable night. I woke up in the middle of the night to check if she had gotten herself down and was ready to come in, but she was still stuck. It was just as well though because there was a rather large sounding pack of coyotes very close so atleast she was safe in the tree. She was down when I got home from work the next day though so I didn't worry about it too much.

I went out of town this last weekend and she got herself good and stuck while I was gone. She did it sometime while the boyfriend was out running errands Saturday afternoon. She still had not come down by the time I got home from work on Monday. The tree she was up was not one we could climb easily so after some figurin' I decided I could pull my truck under it to stand on and snag her out of the branches. She was one traumatized little kitty after 48 hours in a tree. She hasn't been climbing trees much since and I hope she learned her lesson!

When we are home and Chey is outside they are her entertainment. She likes to stalk them.

She is one smart little puppy dog too, cracks me up. She hides behind the truck tires and peeks around them to watch the kittens come out of hiding and then pounces.

The kittens are much braver when we are outside to yell at Cheyanne. They are such trouble makers! So funny to watch though!

This is a close up of Chunk aka: May Belle. Overall she has darker coloring and her tabby stripes are really coming out. She's very pretty! She has a very white belly and paws and light yellow-green eyes.

Legs aka: June Bug, has much lighter coloring, more orange and light colors. Her eyes are a really dark gold color.

They are both just adorable and super friendly. They love to curl up on the couch with us when we are watching tv.
The poor things are cutting teeth right now though. I was holding Legs and petting her and noticed something on her chest. It was a tooth! So I had to inspect and see where it came from. It was Chunks tooth! Not sure how it ended up on Legs' chest! In my teeth inspecting though I found this...

Poor Chunk has two canine teeth on her top right side. Her gums are all red and sore looking. And neither of them are loose. Legs has a really loose tooth on her bottom left, but I couldn't get it out. Poor kittens. I'm sure they aren't enjoying that experience too much. And it's about time to be getting them spayed too. They may not like me for a while.


Well here we are, October 13th already. Again, time is just flying lately. I swear I just posted about entering the G.A.G. and now it's time for the drawing. Where does time go?!?

Before I get into the winners of the G.A.G. I told y'all I'd fess up to what I believe is the quirkiest of all of my quirky habits. It's nothing spectacular, but it is definately weird. Please don't think less of me.

Here goes...

I have issues with washing socks. I don't mind doing laundry all that much, my issues are with socks in particular. I will stick my hand in dirty socks to turn them right-side-out no problem. Well, most of the time no problem. Sometimes during the summer I have a problem with the boyfriends socks after a particularly hot day, but that's another story.

Now, here is the weird part. If I miss a sock and it comes out of the dryer inside-out, I have to turn it right-side-out and then wash it again. No clue why, but I feel like I stretched it out or dirtied it in some weird way if I turn it right-side-out after it's washed.

Yes, I do have issues and I do realize exactly how ridiculous this sounds.

Here is where it gets even weirder (if that's even possible) and where the boyfriend looks at me like I've totally lost it...if I find one of the boyfriends socks in the clean clothes that is inside-out, I will go hand it to the boyfriend and make him turn it right-side-out and then I will go along my merry way putting it away. That is okay. It's not dirty because it was his sock and he turned it right-side-out. If he's not around and I have to turn his sock right-side-out, back in the wash it goes. My socks don't usually get turned inside-out, but if they do, I will usually wash them again.


Ok, now that you all think I'm a total weirdo, let's give away some prizes!

Thanks to those of you that commented and fessed up to some of your quirks! It's nice to know that every one has them, even if they aren't as crazy weird as mine. ;) jrosey, I twirl my hair too, constantly! Paint Girl - totally there with you on the TP. Lisa I have to seperate the colors when I eat Skittles, or I chose carefully which ones I do combine. And Pony Girl, I unfortunately do not have moments of panic like that and have left the stove on more then once. Oops!

Now, since I only got 5 comments/entries (a very sad day for me!) I have decided that instead of having 2 drawings and leaving 3 of you out, all 5 of you get something! WOHOO!!!

Here are your choices:

1. I will preorder a copy of the Pioneer Woman Cookbook from Amazon for you. It is scheduled to be released October 27th. I really can't wait to get my paws on this cookbook and preordered mine as soon as it was available! I have made many, many, many of the recipes on her website and they are always delicious and HUGE hits at parties or with friends!

2. The Mystery Gift Package, which will be some combination of my fave wine, coffee, chocolates or candy with something horsey, Twilighty, doggy or kitty thrown in. You'll have to let me know your preferences or tell me to take a stab at it and surprise you.

Send me an email ( and let me know what's floatin' your boat! And thanks so much for participating and reading my blog!!!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Sunday Stills Challenge - Photoshop

This weeks challenge is Photoshop. Play with the settings and make something interesting. Well, I pretty much suck at editing pictures. I'm not exactly known for my soft touch and the term subtle is not in my vocabulary. I'm not sure how interesting these pics turned out, but they are definately edited!

I took these pics last week for the challenge, Happiness, but didn't get a chance to get them loaded and posted. I figured they'd work just dandy for this weeks challenge. As my sister says, happiness is a hairball. These are my most favoritist hairballs, the ponies. They definately make me happy.

This in particular is the best...getting snarfed by Midori when I go to visit. She just can't stay out of my face when I'm out there. Not even long enough for me to snap a decent pic of her.

And this is the edited version. I played around with these in Picnik, trying out different filters and adjustments. I believe this one was "Night Vision".

Even when the ponies are crabby at me for interrupting their naps, they still make me happy. Somehow I get a lot of crabby pics of Mister, but he is just a big teddy bear.

I believe I cranked up the contrast, lowered the saturation and used a HD filter on this one.

And then there's Sugar Pop. She loves posing for me.

And picnik had all these fun Halloween tools so I made Sug a vampy pony. Somehow it just fit with her better then the others.

Hope you are all having a fabulous weekend! Don't forget to click on the G.A.G. pic at the top of the sidebar and enter the Great Anniversary Giveaway!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Winter Series and Boot Camp

Well, we started the Winter Series this past weekend. We did the Winter Series last year which is where I won my buckle. I won the Beginner Reining class which meant that I also got kicked up to the next class this year which has a real reining pattern and requires flying lead changes. I'm not really ready for the next class, but oh well. I've started lessons and I'm determined to be competitive in it by the end of the series. We are making progress on our flying lead changes, but they are still rough and very inconsistent. We still do not spin. Midori's head is still up in the air, she is not soft or light right now. We have a LOT of work to do, but we are making progress. I just have to keep reminding myself of that since I am having a hard time not getting discouraged and frustrated.

The boyfriend and Sugar are coming along fabulously with their lessons. Sug was a futurity flunkie and came to us as a 3 year old fairly broke reiner, though slightly neurotic. Sug knew way more then we did and we have since done a fantastic job of totally screwing her up. It isn't taking much for Sug's training to come back to her though. She is already back to doing beautiful flying lead changes, trying to slide when she stops, even though she doesn't have sliders on right now, and loping very nice circles framed up. They are improving in leaps and bounds, while I'm still struggling with flying lead changes and playing tug-o-war with my horse while she goes mach 5 around the arena refusing to change leads. It's hard not to get frustrated. I want a broke horse. I haven't had a broke horse since I was 12 or so and was riding my mom's QH Jingles. I'm pretty sure she was broke, even by my standards today. Every horse that I've had since then I've had to train to do what I wanted. Usually I enjoy it, I think I'd get bored just hopping on a finished horse all the time, but sometimes it just gets frustrating having to be patient and appreciate the baby steps.

After a particularly gruelling and unproductive lead changing attempt last week I was seriously writing up a sale ad for my horse, wondering how much I could get out of her and if it would be enough to buy a more broke reiner. One that at least did flying lead changes. Yes, I do have quite the hang up on flying lead changes. I have struggled with them ever since I've had Midori, they have always been an issue for us and they are the only goal I have repeatedly failed to accomplish with her.

We had another lesson together on Friday (me/Midori and the boyfriend/Sug) and once again I sneered at the boyfriend and Sug the whole time. They are such showoffs! Since it was the night before the show Midori and I didn't even attempt flying lead changes. We didn't want to start that battle and blow our mojo for the show. We still managed to get in a pretty good brawl over sidepassing. Sidepassing!!! She has always been good at that, it's practically second nature to her. She was being pissy and ended up throwing a major tantrum, which I just had to laugh at. Really it was pretty darn comical. When she finally got over it, we went back to work and the rest of the lesson went just fine. She was still a little bent out of shape when I was untacking her though. Mares! lol

The reining was Saturday morning and all I wanted was to complete the pattern correctly and as respectably as I could. I knew I was going into it with 4 penalty points already since we were going to do simple lead changes, but I figured we could at least do the pattern clean. And we did. I had a moment of panic wondering if I did 4 spins or had stopped early at 3, but I had counted right. Yay! They weren't pretty at all, actually they felt absolutely horrific, but we did them. I felt pretty good about the rest of our pattern, it was a respectable pattern for where we are at. That was all I asked of the day so mission accomplished.

There were 8 people in our class and when they announced the placings, usually from 3rd up, they only announced 2nd and a tie for 1st. I was 2nd. The boyfriend tied for 1st. What the heck?!? I couldn't believe I had 2nd place! We ran over to look at the score sheet and found that out of 8 people in the class 5 had gone off pattern and gotten zero's. Oops! My score was not good, I got a 62 1/2, but I was only 1 point behind the first place tie. They both did flying lead changes, so considering I had 4 penalty points for that and was still only 1 point behind them I was very pleased with our pattern!

I made sure our pattern was video'd so that I can (in theory) look back on it down the road and see how much progress I've made. I've decided to post it here, for your viewing displeasure. Feel free to skip the first minute or so, in fact, I highly recommend it. Seriously, our "spins" are worse then watching paint dry. They are baaaaad. And try to ignore the jibberjabbering. I couldn't think of a good song to put over it.

Overall it was a fun day, Midori behaved herself and didn't get pissy. We did turn back for a little bit while the boyfriend was cutting in the afternoon. That was fun! I've never done turn back before and Midori seemed to be totally diggin it. We have our next lesson tonight and a month to the next show so plenty of time for some major schooling without blowing our mojo. I'm still planning to be doing simple lead changes at the shows for probably the rest of this year. Yes, that is how bad we are. I'm going to shoot for having consistent, solid lead changes by the first of the year for the rest of the shows. Wish us luck!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

My Anniversary!

Wow! Did October totally sneak up on anyone else? Holy cow! I can't believe it's here already!

I meant to do this post before now, so I could hold the drawing on my actual anniversary, but since I'm a bum and can't seem to keep track of dates to save my life, I'm late. *sigh*

Anyways, I started this crazy blog a year ago October 3rd! I can't believe it's been a year already, this past year has just evaporated! I've had so much fun writing this blog, taking pictures for this blog, making blogger's been quite an adventure!

For my anniversary I've got a completely original idea! I'm going to have a giveaway! I know, I know, I'm brilliant, aren't I?!? The things I come up with! lol The loot is yet to be determined and will depend on who wins it, but it will likely be a scintillating combination of Washington/Horsey/Twilight/Doggie/Kittie themed items. Whatever it is, it'll be grand, I promise!

To enter the Great Anniversary Giveaway (GAG) just answer this question in the comments...

What is your quirkiest habit and how long have you had it?

I know I touched on a few of my quirks here and probably a few other places that I can't remember right now. I believe I have yet to fess up to my quirkiest quirk to anyone but the boyfriend. It's weird. It's the one quirk that the boyfriend looks at me like I'm seriously nuts for. And I'll tell you all about it when I announce the winner of the drawing on October 13th.

So whip out the big guns, I want to hear all about your weirdness! We're all friends here! You have until 10:03 pm (get it? My anniversary is 10/3...10:03 pm...anyone? Anyone? *crickets*) PST Tuesday October 12th to tell me and I'll get you entered in the drawing for the super cool prize that is TBD!

I'll also do a super special bonus GAG drawing for everyone that answers this question...

What is your favorite post from this blog?

Is there one that sticks out in your mind? One that had some profound effect on you? One that you read and went wow, this chick is crazy? One that is simply memorable for whatever reason? Let me know! I like feedback and want to know exactly what you guys think, good or bad!