Sunday, December 18, 2011

Horsing Around

Shorty, after our ride.
Day one of my holiday was glorious and exciting; After breakfast, I went up to Kelly Canyon to go horsebacking! The day was sunny, clear and cold. The snow sparkled on the ground like a Christmas miracle. Meet my steed, Shorty (abbreviated from Short Arrow) shown right and below. Usually I ride Jessie, but she's getting older and so we changed things up a bit. Gary rode my favorite mule, Pal.

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While Gary got out the tack, I took a little bit of time to get to know Shorty, so that we could both enjoy a more relaxed ride.  Although staring into a horse's eyes isn't really my way (and I don't imagine that a horse would find that soothing), I do find them beautiful and soulful, so I snuck in a picture of Shorty's eye; doesn't he have beautiful eyelashes?

Gary, riding Pal.
Our other sturdy companion was Lucky, the Welsh Corgi who ran behind the horses on his short little legs (letting the horses break the snow first) the whole ride!

While we were out, we saw a family of four Moose.  I got one photo from far away, but as we drew nearer, Pal and Shorty spooked, and Gary and I spent our time getting the horses calmed down.  Neither of us lost our seat, thankfully, but we both got a nice shot of adrenaline! 

I hope I get to ride at least one more time before I leave for home, but I think I'm going to try some quiet snowshoeing to the same location first, to see if I can get a little closer to the Moose for better photos.  Don't worry, though, I'm not ignorant to how dangerous Moose can be; I'll be careful!

Lucky; a dog in search of legs.

A far away shot of three moose (there's one in the trees to the left)

Monday, December 12, 2011

Winter Work

Hello out there.  It seems like the common theme of my posts these days is: "I'm sorry it's been such a long time..."  So I'm going to skip ahead of that now and just tell you what I've been up to. 

Suzanne and me at our most recent Craft Fair
The holidays: it's an emotional time, but also a busy time!  I've been trying my hand at craft fairs now that I've got more time to do such things, and I've been pleasantly suprised at how welcomed I've felt.  The other vendors are lovely, and the customers are even lovelier!  One of the dis-advangages about selling work online is that I don't get to hear the thought process of my potential customer.  But at a fair, I can hear the conversation between two people that either results in a sale, or in a pass.  I can gather information about price points, colors, patterns, design, and quality.  And also the emotional reaction that folks have to certain things.  All of this is great for helping me refine my product and its presentation.

This past year has been quite a challenge for me, and after Bronwyn's passing I was left feeling like I was blind to my purpose.  But I've started to find my footing again, and after some soul searching I remember that I really do love the creative endevours that are BCharmer Designs and Mercy Me Designs.  So my next task is to turn those hobby businesses into bona-fide businesses.  My local community has a non-profit program called Enterprise for Equity, which offers business training to low-income entrepreneurs, and I've signed up to begin their training program in February.  I'm thrilled!  My hope is that I can turn something that supports my creativity into something that also supports me financially.  I'll keep you posted (I really will).

In the meantime, I've found some new fabric to love (big suprise) and a fun little project to showcase it.  The designer of this fabric is Lotta Jansdotter, and the line is called, "Echo" and I confess I fell hard for this whole collection before it was even released.  I don't have a lot of it, but enough to make piecework zippered pouches and headbands.  Isn't it delicious?