Sunday, October 4, 2009

New horse

Finally found a new horse for Ali. She bought a nice 3 year old Thoroughbred gelding just this morning. Plain bay, very green but with a sweet disposition and built nicely. They are well suited and she should have a blast with him.
And now we can both do something with our weekends besides looking at sale horses.

Sunday update

No change this week. 185
I am actually ok with that. Part of getting control of my weight is stopping the up and down swings.
I was a little more active this week, but did not watch my eating as much as possible and had some fast food. A little leads to more. This would normally have led to a weight gain.
This week, no fast food and keep upping the activity a little at a time.

Good luck to everyone and hang in there, don't get discouraged, this isn't easy.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sunday update

I did lose a little, but I don't know exactly when.
A few months ago my weight was edging up to 200. I made some changes, the healthiest one being that I stopped eating lunch from McDonald's in between appointments for work. My weight dropped to 185 a few weeks ago and I hadn't weigh myself since then until today. I am at 183, but don't really know when I lost those two pounds.
I am calling this the beginning.

Friday, September 25, 2009

One step toward healthier...


I started a Tai Chi class. It meets once a week and is a very basic class. I have tried Tai Chi on videos but it is difficult to know if you are doing it correctly. I have checked on a few classes but they are huge and expensive. This one is just 8 people and affordable.
Tai Chi can help with stress reduction, focus and balance. All necessary to make life changes.
The first class was fun, I felt uncoordinated but I think everyone did. I am looking forward to the next class.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Bloggest Loser

I am joining a blog group for weight loss and healthy eating...Bloggest Loser. I have been losing weight since I got really determined about it and this brand new blog looks like it might be fun. It is not a dieting site, more just a supportive group. It is just getting started so we will see how it goes.

After almost two years off from serious riding and getting closer and closer to 60, I really need to get in shape NOW if I am going to ride well again. I feel like it is now or never and the older I get the harder it is to stay fit. See my post from back in July...I have lost 20 pounds since then, but need to lose much more. Most of my friends are not overweight so I don't talk about what I am doing or not doing much with them. I'm supposed to talk in this post about how I got overweight, but there wasn't one single 'cause.' I have just gradually put on weight over the years since I turned about 40. It is just harder to stay active enough to keep my weight down and my eating habits have not changed enough. I was motivated to stay in some sort of shape for riding but I have been without a competitive horse for 2 years in September and honestly just let myself go to hell. That's the honest, no excuses story.
If you are interested you can join this group, or just follow. There is a button in the sidebar.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

deep breath, in...out

things to do this weekend

horse hunting with Ali

some laundry and cleaning

paint some watercolour greeting cards

list some earrings on Etsy

build the necklace that I designed and see what it looks like

read, watch TV, sleep, drink coffee (reminder - get whipped cream for super coffee)

do NOT stress over people that I don't understand and don't want to.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

creating our own world...


I have had my knickers in a twist over the health care reform "debate." The fear mongering is way over the top, the sense of entitlement is astounding, but the worst, the very worst is the people showing up at town hall meeting with guns.

This over the top behavior and the daily new media analysis there of is out of control. My reaction to it was a huge amount of negativity of my own.

I have and I will continue to write and call my representatives to voice my opinion about what they should do. I am open and honest about my views on this issue.
But I am over the so called debate.

The American people will get what they want and deserve and I include myself in 'they.' If they really want real health care reform they will make it happen and if they want to step aside for a loud mouth with a gun who wants to intimidate them into shutting the hell up....then they will get more loud mouths with guns making decisions.

We all make our own world.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

new horse?

We may have found a new horse for Ali. This is a 6 year old Thoroughbred gelding, off the track for a few months. He has a wonderful temperament, an ok trot and a lovely canter. The owners were willing to negotiate a price and he will get checked by the vet this week. Pending a good report, she has a new horse. This is the kind of horse that I had hoped she would be able to move up to next year after a season of eventing on Josie, a more solid and safer mount. This is a different kind of ride than she is used to, but she says she is ready to make the commitment to learn what she needs to learn. Her riding skills are not an issue, it's just a big step from a stock type horse to an off track thoroughbred.
This guy reminds me a little of my horse, Scotty, when he was just off the track. A little confused by his new job but just friendly and happy and willing to give anything a try.
Green horses are a challenge, but they are also a great learning experience. They don't lie to you and they can teach you a lot while they are learning at the same time. They are not for green riders. But experienced riders with enough patience can have a blast with a green TB.

Here's hoping for a good vet check.

Edited to add: this one didn't work out. We will just keep looking.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

horses, some unwanted and some loved


There are many unwanted horses in the world. Abandoned, neglected, mistreated, starving.

And there are horses that are loved, cherished and looked out for. They are partners, friends, companions and obsessions.

This was Scotty, love of my life. Scotty died of colic 22 months ago. Healthy horse in his prime one day, dead the next. Colic.


And this happened to one of my students and a friend yesterday. This lovely horse was rescued from a bad situation last year and had become an athletic, happy, trusting partner.
Yesterday in 6 hours she went from happy horse to dead. Colic. Her name was Josie.
It is devastating, hearthbreaking and strikes without warning.

Because of Scotty's death I was in the right place at the right time to rescue this lovely mare from a bad situation. A year later she is happy, healthy and becoming my new partner.
I hope that something worthwhile comes from Josie's death. Otherwise it is a lot of suffering for nothing.

I got mine, so screw you...

"The New York Times and Wall Street Journal's world-wide newsbox lead with new polls that show the American public is growing increasingly concerned that an overhaul of health care would have a negative impact in their own lives. The NYT highlights that the percentage of Americans who describe health care costs as a threat to the economy has gone down in the past month, suggesting that the public isn't buying one of President Obama's central arguments for the plan. The WSJ points out that last month respondents were evenly divided on the merits of the overhaul but now support has declined, particularly among those who are already insured."

Slate Magazine

anybody placing any bets on this mess?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

HAVE to get back in shape!


I have been slowly losing a little weight, but I somehow need to get motivated to get back in shape. I have had a year and a half of goofing off and being lazy and at this age it feels almost impossible to work back into some semblance of physical fitness.
Riding Nina at a walk does not require any fitness.
Today I got on a horse during a lesson. Horse was being a stubborn mule and the rider was so frustrated. So I got on. I am in such rotten shape that pushing the horse to be obedient for about 10 minutes had me puffing. So sad.
I just need to leap out of bed in the morning and work out, instead of dragging out of bed, waiting impatiently for the coffee to be ready and then sitting like a zombie sucking down coffee.
Sounds simple......OMG.

Monday, June 1, 2009

CED for June, Sound

The first thing that comes to mind is the sound that grounds and centers me as much as my very best meditations.

The sound of the footfalls of a trotting horse on the soft sandy footing of a groomed arena.
A soft chuffing sound as each steel shod foot of a 1200 pound animal strikes the ground in a swinging rhythm.
A steady metronome of sound punctuated by an occasional deep breath or a gentle deep exhale down the nostrils. Hypnotic sounds of a horse at work, footfalls, breathing, the soft squeak of leather against leather, a tail swishing flies, a mummered conversation of human to horse.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Creative Every Day Challenge

I have been consumed with creating the website for my new business, but I finally have time to look around a little and see what is going on in the blogging world.
The Creative Everyday Challenge has been carrying on without me, but I found when I visited the site today that the theme for May was Nature.
Happy coincidence, in May I discovered that my love for a horse sport, eventing, had led me to spend many entire days at competitions; walking courses and photographing horses and riders, chatting with riders and re-awakening a passion that I had buried a year ago along with a very special horse.
Here are a couple of shots:

Colorado Horse Park warmup ring

Spring Gulch HT

Spring Gulch HT

Spring Gulch course

Colorado Horse Park

Saturday, May 30, 2009

3-Day Event


I have stayed away from eventing since Scotty died, without a top rate horse to ride it was just sad to watch. This spring I took a student out to school over some cross country jumps and started getting interested again. Took her to a Combined Test, she did great, I wished I was riding.
Went to a Horse Trial and wished I was riding.
Today I went to a 3Day Event, helped out a couple of riders at the vet box and I just can't stand it....I have to get back to the sport.
With or without Nina, I have the bug again. See Nina's Story if you are curious about why I don't just run out and do this. First we have to learn to walk.

photo is my friend and coach Reed and the super awesome Shiver.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

spring snow, rain, snow, rain

A Rocky Mountain spring storm swept out of the mountains yesterday. Early morning snow turned to rain and then seemed not to be able to make a decision through the early afternoon. When the snow finally got serious it buried the landscape in over a foot of heavy wet snow in a short time. Some trees in the metro area made the news by becoming victims of the weight of the snow, many more were on the verge of succumbing.
The lilacs in the backyard were laid flat under the snow, large lumpy mounds of unhappiness.
Now the snow has turned to rain again, pelting down, washing the heavy, sticky wet snow off of trees and bushes and they are slowly, a branch at a time, regaining their original form.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Monday, April 13, 2009

summing up the economic problems...

I am an NPR junkie. I have been listening to the debates lately. I think the show is called IQ Squared. It is Oxford style debating on some interesting topics.

This week's motion:
"Blame Washington more than Wall Street for the economic crisis"

This exchange about summed the whole thing up for me:

point: ...when Wall Street spent millions lobbying Congress for less regulation, they were not debauching a virgin, they were paying a harlot.

counterpoint: ...but they stole the money they used to do it.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

not blogging because...

I love the new look that I put together for this blog and I haven't had time to use it and enjoy it.

The Creative Everyday Challenge and the Secrets of Highly Creative Women really inspired me and I am working every minute on getting ready to launch my new company.....Tapestry Life Coach.
I am going to focus on women in life transitions and I am really excited about it.

I took some intensive courses in life coaching about 10 years ago and did corporate coaching but I just never took the step to become an independent life coach.

Some of the women that I have read about in their blogs on just these two projects really inspired me to stop twirling around and just do it.

So I am spending more hours than there are in a day on business plan, marketing plan, and website design. I want you all to know that just by being your creative selves you have made a difference in my life.

Now if I could just find the time to play and have fun with the projects!
Actually it's not all work and no play, I have been doing some (bad but fun) watercolor sketches and I am faithfully doing the exercises in 12 Secrets, in a beautiful cut velvet journal that I bought just for that purpose. It's the blogging that is coming out on the losing end. But I am reading all of your blogs whenever I get a minute. Carry on!!!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

12 Secrets...Chapter 2

I am finding this book so inspiring. I spent a great deal of my life suppressing my feminine side, feeling that it wasn't valued or even necessary.
My creativity, my connection to nature and my sense of continuity took the form of breeding show dogs. I bred 7 generations of German Shepherds and traced their heritage as lovingly as any genealogist and treasured glimpses of previous generations in the newest one.
But other than that, I cultivated the skills that would let me 'get ahead' and 'be successful.' That was not a totally bad thing, I learned and taught and grew. But it is only now, in my late 50s that I have come to realize that I ignored my own yearnings and natural skills in favor of things that more obviously would contribute to making a living.
I envy those of you who listened to your internal voices earlier in life, but I am enjoying the path I am now exploring.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

CED, day 25

I have not kept up with scanning and posting in the way that I intended but I have been working...or should I say PLAYING...with what I intended and more.

The watercolors project became somewhat frustrating again and I was losing my focus on enjoying the process and beginning to stress about the end result. So I set it aside for a little while. I also purchased the book "Watercolor Basics, Let's Get Started" by Jack Reid. It is a series of exercises to help beginners learn and become comfortable in the medium. The author's enjoyment of the process and not just the result comes across very clearly. It was a good choice for me and I am enjoying it.

I also began writing everyday on eHow.com
I made a commitment to average an article a day for the month just to see how it went and so far I am enjoying it. I was glad that I decided to do it that way because some days I am completely blank for a topic and other days several articles flow easily. I have posted a link in the sidebar if you care to read, and feel free to comment.
This has been a good way to do something I like doing in a more disciplined way. I am very excited to see that our thought for February in CED is "Words."

I am also taking part in the 12 Secrets group blog and it has become an important part of my CED process. The two tie together in just the right way for me.

I have taken a little time to surf around and see some of the other blogs of those who are taking part in both of these projects and I am in awe of the creative people that I visit.

Monday, January 12, 2009

12 Secrets...Chapter 1

favorite quote:
"What you love is a sign from your higher self of what you are to do." Sanaya Roman

I do wish that I had understood/listened to/been brave enough to live by this when I was younger. My consolation is that so many women I meet are in the same situation. Like many of them, I had a good career, made good money and called myself successful. But it had nothing to do with what I love or who I am. Who exactly were we listening to when we go so far off track in our youth? Better late than never. I shall just have to live a very long time to make up for it.

I just finished reading Chapter 1. I was relieved, intrigued and interested. Relieved because I was afraid it was going to be some chirpy, inane, you-can-do-it sort of tripe.
Instead I found myself wanting to learn more about the women who contributed to this book and very interested in what the author had to say. I felt involved in a conversation.
I am delighted by the beginning of this project and looking forward to Chapter 2.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

I first posted this on another blog, but I wanted to share it here. I am in constant awe of the artwork of Nature....


The geese are on the move. The skies are full of noisy flocks.

The local flocks are flying in close formations from lake to lake, scoping out the best possible nesting sights.

The migrating flocks are flying high and hard and fast, heading for their temporary resting place a few hundred miles north. One stop on their long trek north.

South Platte, Nebraska, where the North Platte River and the South Platte River come together to form a large area of wetlands, is one of the largest layover spots for migrating birds in North America. Here in Denver we are not in the center of the path of migration, many birds fly too high and fast to be seen easily and some travel at night. So the main indicators for me of this activity are the flocks of geese.

I have traveled to South Platte a few times to see the migration. I don't do it often enough. The highways between here and there can turn in a heartbeat from clear and dry to dangerous blizzards with drifts higher than a car. But the main reason is that my sense of spring approaching doesn't really come alive until mid March and by then the birds are gone.

The largest part of the annual migration arrives in early February. The lakes are frozen here, the ground inhospitable. I have to wonder about the landscape that these birds are hurrying toward. It surely can't be any more welcoming the farther north they travel.

The resting area in the wetlands is unbelievable. I once counted 70+ golden eagles in a bare cottonwood tree. One of hundred of trees around the ponds, each full of eagles.

I saw snow geese and swans so crowded together on ponds that I was reminded of overcrowded knick knack shelves.

Five foot tall sandhill cranes, so many in a cornfield that they surpass any crowded mall at Christmas time. Thousands and thousands of birds, as far as the eye could see. As I approached them, even though their legs are as long as mine, they did not walk away. They would make a small jump into the air, spread their enormous wings and glide 50 feet away. Feet trailing a few inches above the ground, an apparently effortless change of position. Occasionally one would lift his enormous wings over his head in a beginning courtship display. The sound of the flock chattering to each other was deafening.

I saw every sort of hawk and falcon, crowded together in trees, motionless, silent, unmoved by my presence, photographed often and by better than me.


The birds arrive in February and by the first week in March they are gone. Some rest for weeks, pick mates, court and dance and eat. Others come in and rest motionless for days or weeks and move on. Some arrive in large noisy flocks. Some travel with a mate or last year's offspring. Some are flying totally alone.

I have been incredibly moved by this gathering since I first witnessed it. And humbled.

Long ago our first ancestors came down from the trees and moved into the caves. Found fire, art, community, tools, building, teaching and learning. Civilizations have been born, died and their remains have disappeared. Wars have been fought, won and lost. We have been proud of our learning, our building, our skyscrapers, our space shuttles, our 'power' over the earth.

And throughout all this time, the geese fly north every spring.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

CED, day 6


Add ImagePlaying with color.

Finding things in colors.


Facing my fear of watercolor,
I am going to find a way to play with them.

:-)

Monday, January 5, 2009

CED, day 5






Since the first attempt with watercolors did not turn into a brown/green/yellow blob, I am going to try again. I took this photo a couple of months ago. It has an interesting amount of dark and light and I am going to use it for my next watercolor sketch.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

CED, day 4

I am going to call this one finished. My goal was to play with some color and NOT overwork it and end up with a muddy mess. This is probably the least muddy watercolor sketch that I have ever done.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

CED, day 3, a little more

I came back to this with the idea of adding a little more and quitting before I stopped enjoying it. Something verrrrry strange with the sky, but this is working better than anything else I have tried. All done for today, I will take it out tomorrow and look at it and see what I see.
I have started putting the scans in a folder and I think I am going to number them. In a few months I should be able to flip through them in order and make something of what is happening.

CED, day 3

My goal, working on this painting, is to NOT end up with a muddy mess. It has been my downfall with watercolor, obsessively overworking it. So I told myself to PLAY with color, don't worry about the end product. Thinking about my ultimate goal, that less is more, I have done just a preliminary wash of a few colors. I am happy with the sky and start of the treetops. I will think about it and play with it more later.

Friday, January 2, 2009

CED, day 2

Taking the plunge....watercolors.
Good watercolor paintings have always touched an emotional chord in me, more so than any other medium as a general rule. But the creation of good watercolor art has always eluded me. I have painted in oils and acrylics and while I am a fairly good technician, my work lacks emotion, which is at the core of art. There is no emotion in the finished product because the mediums do not conjure up emotion in me.
Watercolor does move me, but it goes against my ingrained control freak nature. I was the little girl who painted the little paint-by-number pictures with nary a mistake. I was the little girl who colored drawings with crayon and filled every molecule of space and obsessed over which color should cover the lines, perfectly.
A good watercolor painting makes natural flowing use of space and light, something I greatly admire but find alien when I try it myself.

But I am willing to try again, spurred on by this challenge and wanting to have fun with it instead of toiling in frustration. Above is a pencil sketch to work from, already I know that I have inserted too much detail but I am going to ignore it and carry on. I plan to work on this through the weekend and if at the end I have my usual muddy 'did you think you were working in oils, dear?' project....at least I will have taken the first step.
Have fun, play, have fun, create, have fun....play.

in the mood for onion

I haven't read The Onion in years. It just sorted drifted out of my life. I recently came across a quote from an article, looked it up online and started subscribing. I have spent the morning giggling at the news stories. You want creative, there are some hysterically creative people working there.
This one struck me today.
Dead ipod remembered
from The (already obsolete) Technology column.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Creative Every Day Challenge

My real goal this year is to work on watercolor painting, but this morning I decided to just make something pretty for myself. So I made these earrings and I like them. I am wearing them right now, with my pajamas...great outfit!
I think this Challenge is going to be wonderful!

For more info check here

it's happening again


The Winter Solstice brings a sense of relief that there is an end to the dark and cold days. But since the reality is that most of the winter weather happens after Solstice, there is always an inevitable letdown and that nagging feeling that....well, maybe this year spring isn't coming after all.

Driving to work yesterday I saw a mature Bald Eagle cruising in the 80mph windstorm we were having, flying effortlessly directly into the wind.

The Bald Eagles leave early in the fall, but some return as early as this.

So it is going to happen again. Only a few short days past Solstice and the birds are starting the new season even under cover of winter snow.

I wasn't fast enough to get a picture of my own of the eagle.
I found this picture here.

2009

May the coming year bring you joy.

photo found here