Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Shipping Blues and Portraits

My shipping department is all tuckered out.

Tonka has been working pretty hard with all that shipping to do. His favorite part is going to the post office.
While Tonka is busy running the shippping department I have been doing some portraits. This is soon after starting.

And this is the finished lifesize pastel portrait of this beautiful boy. His parents will be thrilled with this thoughtful gift.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Winds of Change


The south wind blows in warm air and rain, then it turn and comes from the north with the blasts of cold air across the mountain. I think of the stories I've heard from native elders of the battling of the winds. I see the south wind son winning the battles. Then the North wind son grows stronger and starts winning.

The horses feel this change as they face the wind manes flowing in the south wind, turning their backs to the north wind. 

I stand in gratitude of so many things this season.
Happy Thansgiving!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Lost and Found

To say things have been chaotic around here would be putting it very lightly. The construction is still underway at the barn. I spend alot of the day running after various do dads and what nots for the crew.
Sales have been brisk in my etsy shop and on the website, thank God and all my loyal customers and collectors.
I sold a couple of watercolors. I went to the large drawer where I keep all them.
I found one straight away,
 the other nowhere to be found.
I searched and searched.
I found these three paintings that I had forgot about.
I searched some more.
I find another little stack of watercolors I need to photographh.
And finally just before I go into a full blown panic I find it.

I wonder about myself sometimes.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Barn Apartment Construction

My housing situation since moving in to assist the elderly parents... well not so good.
First I tryed living in the main house but discovered the three, yes 3 TVs running 24/7 was way to much for me. NowI live in the tepee in the summer and it's awesome. But the winters in the studio....

I built a studio in part of an old greenhouse. It's a pretty good space but no running water and no clothes closet, plus to live in too ... not really big enough.

After building the barn last year my plan was to build a small aptartment in there. I went to my freind Diana at DK Berg Designs. She is a fabulous space planner and since the space is only 12 x 24' I needed every inch to count.

The plan was to start at the beginning of November. Even though this is the busiest time of year in my business it is the best time for the horses to not be using the barn.

After visiting the Habitat for Humanity Restores around Arkansas and finding some great deals on windows, doors and an adorable bathroom vanity I was ready to get started.

I called James and the crew that built the barn. The guys like lots of construction workers these days are very glad to have the work. As with the barn they are just doing the basics and I will do all the finish work.

Most of the framing lumber came from a local sawmill. It was a great price but to get it takes a trailer and digging through the stacks to get to the wood that I needed.
The insulation for the walls I bought at 1/2 price because of ripped bags at the local home store.

The septic system was put together from two 55 gallon drums and these great online instructions.

It's a good thing I did all this to save money because everthing else went over budget, mostly from my miscalculations and all the extra stuff I didn't know I needed. The shower stalll alone costs a whopping $500, twice as much as I figured. But I like it.

     The guys will be finished by next week. There will still be plenty more for me to do.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Spirit Horse Note Cards

So many of my fans and collectors have asked for note cards.
After much searching I found Caleb and Emily Designs
 I received them and was absolutely thrilled.

The blank note cards are professionally printed on heavy fine art paper. They are packaged in sets of six (two of each design) and come complete with white envelopes.

Just imagine how adorable they will look peeking out the edge of a stocking or the warm feeling a faraway friend will get when they see these precious little ponies.

A great gift for all the horse lovers on your list.

And my favorite part:

Super Fast and Easy Shopping
Lancaster Art

Monday, November 15, 2010

Sunday Bloody Sunday

This is the opening weekend of modern rifle deer season here in the Ozark Mountains. It's like a bloody holiday here. You won't see many menfolk working at their jobs this weekend, a tradition. It's time for the deer woods, drinking, gambling and other male/ family bonding time.

Although I have witnessed this tradition here I have never joined in. Alcohol and fire arms is not something I want to be a part of, but still...I deer hunt with my cars :(

I do regularly reap the rewards. Today it was two rib cages. Not much meat on em but some. I gave one away to a fella that was here helping me move sheet rock for the new barn apartment. (more on that in another post)

So I had one ribcage. I decided to get the hacksaw and cut it in small enough pieces to put in my dog food cooking pot. After throwing a small tarp on the patio table I went to work. There was luckily two other bones in the bag to keep Tonka busy while I worked. Although they were unwieldy they cut up pretty fast. I hosed them off and double packaged them in plastic grocery store bags. Seven I dropped in the freezer. That'll give Tonka meat for months and he'll like it.

Tonka's Food
I feed Tonka dry gravy dog food mixed with what I cook him. It varies some depending on what I can get free or cheap. I start by boiling  a pound or two of meat in a pretty good sized pot and then add 2 or 3 cups of brown rice. After the rice is cooked I put in anything else I have like leftover veggies. (Right now I have some baby food and rice cereal that was expired and was getting thrown out at a local store.)

After the soup cools I refrigerate it. A pot will last him a week or ten days. I spoon it over his dry food, add hot water and stir. He loves it!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Mystery Solved

Now I know where all those sketches came from I don't remember doing.
Everyone is a critic.
 I need to give her a paint brush.

Golden Moon
My latest construction project has me very preoccupied. It'll be finished soon I hope and will get back to a more normal schedule.

Been painting some and selling lots. It's a good thing as my new barn dwelling is going way over budget. I may be able to squeak by and get most of it done.

Will post photos of it soon.