And fire in my backyard, too! Bless that young man from the pool company for his perseverance! I spent a LONG time last night enjoying the fire pit and my new solar lights.
It was warm and pleasant outside. I could even get out of the spa, relax in a chair, and get back in.
The sunset was very pink, which made the clouds before the storms look more benign. It was so relaxing!
All that relaxing was great preparation for some busy times coming up. I worked like crazy today and had plenty of energy to keep going. Hooray! The Pool of Dreams is a dream come true.
I even got my son to help me put my old rug from my knitting room in Austin on the porch to make more of an outdoor living room effect. It’s an indoor-outdoor rug so should be ok.
The highlight of the day today was getting more propane delivered. A lot. And since I’m apparently the family propane waster I’m now paying for it. Ka-ching. I’ll try to ration my fire pit use. But not the spa. I love it.
We are sort of battened down for a winter storm right now. Well, most of us are. Lee and the resident nephew went somewhere in east Texas to pick up a beautiful second-hand horse trailer and some mysterious “other stuff” that I can’t wait to see. I hope the weather is kind to them!
Today, Trixie was supposed to come and look at Apache’s feet, but Drew stole the show. I had gotten both of the horses, in preparation for her arrival, and Apache was quietly waiting for us in his pen. As we walked up, we couldn’t see Drew. Where was he?
Yep, he’d decided to just take a nice nap on the warm sand. That’s a sign that a horse is comfortable with the people he’s around. The best part is that he didn’t jump to his feet when we approached, like most horses would. As prey animals, they are always alert.
The fisr thing Trixie did was check out the big paint’s head, because it seemed sore. Drew got up and watched that intently, standing close so I could rub him. Trixie remarked that Drew really seems to be a people horse.
Apache’s feet are looking great, by the way, and he’s looking more and more normal. He even shrunk a horseshoe size. As he was being a model farrier client, I realize that I had lost Drew.
He shifted again and really fell asleep, with fluttering eyelids, and deep, deep breathing. That was one comfortable animal.
We could not stop laughing as he kept snoozing away even when Apache was finished and left. His little lips were quivering like he was having a nice dream. Damn, it was cute.
Once we finally got him up, he got some spa treatment, as Trixie massaged his gums like she had done for Apache. We think he liked it.
He then let his front hooves get trimmed, but still was no good on the back, so Trixie is gonna come tomorrow and work on his issues again. He still walks a little. Funny, and we want him all ready and happy for training.
I guess I’m in love with both these equine wonders. My heart swells with love when I see how much progress we are making together.
Chickens and Snakes
I heard a loud noise last night from the chicken coop, and this morning I discovered something had gone after Babette. Her head is a mess, but she seems okay. In case Bruce did it, I separated her from the others, except Star, who is still setting on her eggs.
But it is not all bad! Blanca, the True Blue hen, finally started laying yesterday! What beautiful eggs she lays. Sky blue! Now we’re just waiting on Betty the Easter Egger to give us some green eggs, and Billie Idyl.
When I was out fetching the horses, I spotted this snakeskin, most likely a rat snake. It has these cool ribbon-like segments, I guess from its belly. I’m glad Trixie liked it as much as I did.
Well, this was fun. My new laptop is also a giant tablet. I typed this from my chair, with the computer flat. I am fancy now.
To celebrate my job change and help me wind down, the family surprised me with a getaway to Bandera.
It’s a different place than we went last year, though nearby. We are the first guests in the guesthouse at Farmer’s Daughter, so everything is fresh and new. Even the trees are new. But it’s also really familiar, with horses, cattle, a bunch of dogs, and rustic stuff.
It turns out you can bring dogs and horses here, so we might return! I’ve walked around and identified some plants, you know, because I do that.
I also am thrilled to have a horse to pet. This fellow will show you how Drew will look in a few years. He even has a snip on his nose like Drew.
The cattle are two longhorns, one friendly, one not. The bull is so beautiful!
I’m doing my best to relax, though I’m annoyed I didn’t know there would be a hot tub. Mine is all wire, so no good yet! Because I’m just wiped out, I’m going to just going to share some scenery and sign off.
I’ll be more coherent tomorrow. Now I shall eat my celebration cake and drink wine.
One thing I’ve figured out in the past year is that I need more rest than I’d been getting. My mental health is so much better now that I’m allowing myself more downtime. I’m going to try to keep that up. After all, I’m at the Hermits’ Rest. I should rest when I can.
I’m not even going to pressure myself to blog if I don’t have anything useful to say. My plan for today is to finally ride Apache again, and otherwise knit and play with dogs.
I guess there IS good among the challenges of this era. I do see more self care and kindness to others. Let’s keep it up!
Last night I finished the scarf I was making for Kathleen out of some yarn I’d never have bought, mainly because I don’t shop at Hobby Lobby (Yarn Bee Wildstreak Brights). It really makes up into a nice fabric, though, and is very soft. Plus, it makes a great jelly roll.
It was really fun to just sit around knitting and purling as I watched television this week, not having to think about much other than how easy it is to stick your needle in the middle of the loosely twisted roving-like yarn.
If it were for me, I’d have made it longer, but Kathleen said she likes shorter scarves. Since it’s 100% acrylic, it will be very warm. I think it’s perfect for wearing under a jacket to protect your neck, without adding a lot of bulk under the jacket. So, it will do its job.
Now that I am making things again, I’m just going to be a bit more careful than I was in the past about making things for people who don’t realize how much time and effort (and expense) can go into hand-made items. My photos of past projects are reminders of what hard work I did, only to find the item wadded up on the floor, never worn or used. But, that’s a problem of the recipients, not me. I did take some things back when a former young housemate abandoned all her stuff. So there.
My recommendation is that, if you knit, crochet, weave, or whatever, you do it because you enjoy the process, the feel of the yarn, the developing fabric, and the colors, not to please other people. That leads to craft happiness.
I’m ready to start the next project, which should go quickly, because it’s made from bulky yarn (also inexpensive stuff from a big box store). I do look forward to using more of my yarn from local yarn shops and indie dyers. They need our support, so much, especially right now!
Here are the rest of my pictures of the project, for your snoozing pleasure.
I did want to share a little project I realized has been sitting around the house, just doing its job. I’m not sure what it was originally was intended to be, perhaps a wrap. It’s made with a nice Noro yarn in a pattern of knitting a certain number of rows then doing a row where you wrap each stitch 3 times.
And I knit it corner to corner, with strategic increases and decreases to make a rectangle. I guess I got tired and stopped when it looked like this.
It apparently occurred to me that it matched our colors in the Austin house, so it is now serving as a cushion cover for my antique rocking chair (it needs a new seat cover; my dad covered it in the 80s).
This just goes to show you that simple projects can be beautiful and serve well. I’m glad I’ve learned to stop trying to make more and more complicated things and to just enjoy beautiful yarns and textures. That lets me take advantage of the calming properties of my chosen hobby.
I’m always interested in what hobbies you’re using to help you pass the time, create gifts for your family, or take your mind off world events. Share away!
I’m finally feeling a bit better than I was last week. I instituted some processes and revisited some boundaries, which helped so much. Much of the reason I’m back at something like an equilibrium is that I took my own advice and slowed down, took yesterday off to just goof off with Mandi, Lee, and the dogs (separately), and let nature heal me by spending all morning today on the porch.
Our back porch has grown a nice hedge of sunflowers, which help keep it cool, and today the breeze was making the west side of the porch feel like a tropical paradise. So, I sat there with the dogs coming in and out, and just listened to the birds sing, watched the trees, and breathed. I got so quiet that the barn swallows, finches, and cardinals were flying in and out so close I could hear their wings (above the wasps). I highly recommend the porch sitting with no agenda method of de-stressing to all of you!