Friday, September 23, 2011

saddle seat apparel . . .

Wake up, drink some coffee, milk a cow, drive to school.  Teach all day, drive back home, make some chalkboards, go to bed.  DO IT AGAIN!  DO IT AGAIN!  DO IT AGAIN!

Since summer, my leisurely schedule has changed. No longer do I get to hang out on the farm and do what I want all day. Now, I am slightly bound to a schedule. Fortunately for me, I like having schedules. :)

I teach art most of the day and on a few occasions I help with intervention groups.  With my groups I am focusing on reading, writing, listening, and speaking.  I think is it a whole new approach that requires a lot of work from the students, but they are enjoying the learning activities.

This weekend is the first event for the OIHA horse team competition.  Both Nolan and Macy will be participating in it this year.  Amory has opted to spend her time this year joining an orchestra.  :)  And tonight Amory and I spent some time helping Nolan get a costume ready for the saddle seat event he will be in tomorrow.  Instead of buying a new riding coat, we talked about it, and last night came up with a plan to sew some extended tails on his hunt seat coat and pin it on for his new event.  When he is finished, we take the pins out and he uses his coat as before!  :)  Amory spent the time sewing the flaps, and I made an old farm hat look like a new derby hat.




The point is for the costume to appear to be saddle seat apparel without spending the $300-$1500 to get a suit.  So far, we were able to come up with a fairly decent costume for $25.00.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

lots of improvising . . .

The knotting of the string on the gourd is fun to do.  I decided to use this type of attachment to hold the gourd up on the wire.  The only other alternative was to drill holes in the top and run a string through it.  I like this look more than a string ran through it.

 This one was EXTREMELY fun to create today.  It all started with our dog Saxon tearing off the top of the gourd.  Instead of blaming him (since it was me that left it on the concrete to dry) I just used it to make a different style of birdhouse.  A more decorative one.  After I sanded it, I drilled holes around the torn top part and the hole for the bird.  I painted it a medium green with spray paint then applied a dark walnut stain on top of that.  Once it was dry I added some semi-dry cat tail reeds by "sewing" them on with black string.  I also used a blanket stitch around the hole with the same string.
 And this is where I put the bird houses.  (or this is where I had Nolan put them!) The electricity wire that stretches from the garage to the horse barn.  Notice the improvisation on lift equipment.  Relatively safe, as long as the van is not moving!  :)  (out here on the farm we have to do lots of improvising.)

hanging them on the wire . . .

I finished the balcony off the game room/loft a couple of weeks ago.  And I am quite happy that I figured out how to match the railing of the porch!

I had purchased a screen door to put on to allow a nice air flow in the room and when I took it up to the loft, there was no way it was going to fit.  Even if I cut a lot from it.  So, I keeped the door for a week or so and modeled the one built from it.  It was fairly easy to build, and I think I probably had $3 - $7 in the total screen project.

 Today was a creative day.  For the past several weeks I have been busy with school starting and with chalkboards on my Etsy business.  It had been awhile that I spent some time making things I want to make.  So today I spent some time building a shelf that I wanted in the bathroom, re-arranging towels racks, adding shelves to the boy's room, adding some art in the girl's room, and making some gourd bird houses.  A while back, a friend gave me four uniquely shaped gourds from his garden.  I have been excited to get to making these for some time, so I spent the time today.  And it was great!  I washed, sanded, and spray painted them blossom white.  The holes had already been cut for me.  After the paint dried, I used my gourd craft book I had gotten many years ago to get inspired to add some knotted string.  It's a sort of macrame. I will be wrapping the string around the top of the gourd so I can hang them on the wire between the garage and the horse barn.  It is a favorite place for birds and I hope a few of them start using the gourds as their home.