Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.

Ashley Smith

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

I'm going to Summer Camp!!

Oh my gosh... I can hardly believe it.  I have been dreaming about Horse Camp for 2 years now, trying to figure out how to make it work.  Well, apparently asking the universe is how to make it work!!

In this post I practiced the Law of Attraction: you know-asking the universe for what you want. And, by golly, it worked!

This is the chain of events that precipitated this most awesome outcome:

First- The Asking.   This was more difficult than you might think.  Even when it is completely clear to you what you want, it still feels selfish to ask.  You start second-guessing yourself, wondering if you really deserve "whatever it is".  All I can say, is if it is something you really want, put it out there.  and then prepare yourself to take the next step, which is:

Recognize the opportunities.  When I wrote my blog post about Horse Camp, Rother Horsemanship commented with ideas on how to decrease the cost- which was really my biggest obstacle challenge.  Since one of the reasons I want to go to camp is because I don't think I can do the basic exercises (more about that later...), I figured becoming a "club member" was my ticket to a discount!  Well, the universe provided again- (or really Rother Horsemanship did...) Club memberships were on sale!  I joined up (which has been totally fun in and of itself!) and now I qualified for a 20% discount!

Then I got a Christmas bonus, so I could put a deposit down for camp. Now, the key step:
Commitment. did I want to go enough to commit to it? This is where the Universe lays your wish at your feet and you have to decide if you are going to pick it up and run with it or turn your back on it.
For me, this step involved a lot of question asking- What are the available dates? Can I even make these dates work? Can I get time off?  Is my dear husband willing to take care of the ranch while I am gone?  If I choose a date and then later it doesn't work, what are my options? Once Brian and I hammered out all the details, the biggest question remained and only I could answer it:

Will this decision lead me in the direction I want to go?

Wow. Okay, that is a big question, mostly because then I have to figure out what is the direction I want to go.

Yes, camp would be fun.
Yes, I would get to spend quality time with other horsey people.
But, when it comes right down to it: am I willing to spend the money and time to just goof around? Maybe the answer is yes, and that's okay- we all deserve some play time. 

However, when I really, truly looked at it... what am I craving?, what direction do I most sincerely want to move in?  it is very clear that what I want is more confidence in me.  I am tired of being stuck in the front field due to my own fears.  I have tried on my own to move my horse out into the "big country", but never get farther than our neighbor's driveway. He dances and whinnies and we retreat to our safety zone.  Reading and watching videos, I know what needs to happen- we need to keep working at it, expanding that comfort zone.  However, I have done what I can do by myself- I am ready for professional intervention!

Decision made.  The rest is just...
Follow through.  I made the deposit.  I was committed (to camp, not "committed").  This is when the Universe truly opened up and provided.  I figured I would just pay a little off each month until July.  Well, Rother Horsemanship offered another deal (can you tell I love them?) that you could save yet another $200 by paying the full tuition by January 15th.  And, coincidentally (if you believe anything is a coincidence...), my dearest husband received a small windfall that allowed us to pay off the balance of tuition before the 15th!!

I am still a little bit in awe of this series of events... and I promise to make the best of my good fortune.  Cheyenne (that's my horse) and I are already working on "Level 1 groundwork" and he is so good at it! I am still trying to not hang myself with the excess lead rope...
I am totally enjoying the HorseBook club- always good advice, you can ask all sorts of questions and gain knowledge from the answers to other people's questions.  There are video clips and photos- it's awesome. 
And in addition to my free DVD (Series II), I pulled out our Series I DVDs and am enjoying them as well.

This whole experience has done two amazing things for me already (and I haven't even gone to summer camp yet!)
  1. Totally confirmed my belief in asking the Universe and letting it provide.
  2. Renewed my excitement about working with my horse.
 So thank you, all of you who showed an interest in my summer camp wishes.  I feel that making it a real request here, for all 6 of you to see, helped me believe in it.  And believing in it made it happen.

It's just like Brian says about anything we want to make happen:
Put it on the calendar.

Sage advice. I did it.  Now what do you want to put on your calendar?

Friday, January 6, 2012

Crochet Mania!!! (as promised)

It all started with a mouse...
No longer so clean, as Smokey has been playing with it!

Actually it really all started with a newsletter from Joybilee Farms with a pattern for a crocheted rabbit.  It was soooo cute, but, alas, I did not know (or remember) how to crochet! Well I shared my lament with Chris (owner of Joybilee Farm) and she promptly posted a link to a "learn how to crochet" video.  If you "Facebook" (hmm... a new verb) you can see Joybilee's page HERE.

As it turns out, you can learn almost anything on You Tube... I followed through a 7 or 8 part "crochet a giraffe" series, learned the basic crochet stitches necessary for amigurumi (a fancy word for: crocheted toys), and started my new obsession craft endeavor. Mouse was the first product.  Stuffed with Greta wool and organic catnip from our garden, this mouse is one of Smokey's new favorites!
(on a side note: never, ever, ever plant catnip somewhere that you don't want it to take over. and if you let it flower, you can just forget about ever not having it. Just sayin')

Encouraged by my success, I quickly made mouse 2:(he even got facial features...)

Pretty cute, No?
The mouse pattern, BTW, is available (for free!!) from the Lion Brands Yarn website.  You have to register, but it doesn't cost anything and, so far, they haven't clogged my inbox with email messages.
Of course their pattern calls for using their yarn, but I actually used my very own hand-spun (it is okay to be super impressed). and I left off the bell from the end of the tail (Smokey just eats them anyway).

Now that I had successfully crocheted up some rodents, I was looking for a different little creature.  Enter "The Birds", not the 1963 Alfred Hitchcock release, but a blog with another free pattern: Birds of a Feather

Santa Bird (the hat was my idea!)
This one was crocheted with mill ends- wool singles. A little easier to work with than my handspun.  I learned something here: if you are planning on putting plastic safety eyes on your crochet toys, you need to do that before you stuff and close them.  Yeah, I know, sounds pretty basic, but I am speaking from experience here.  So Santa Bird got button eyes.  Still too cute.

Onward to... Bird #2:
Can you stand it?
 This little one was made with some handspun that I had in my stash. It was not spun by me, so it is a little more balanced and easier to work with.  He got a jaunty comb instead of a hat!

Then, since these last 3 were all going to sunny So Cal to live with my sister, niece and their 2 cats- I had to make mouse 3 (2 cats, 1 mouse, no good).  Alas, no photo of him (that's what happens when you have to do a rush job and get it mailed out!)

Bird Friends

Are you really going to need that hat in California?
Look this thing has his wings on his head!

Away we go!
Hey!!!! Wait for me!

The End.
 So there they are ~ Crochet Critters.  I have another bird done and am working on a sheep!  The rabbit I originally was interested in is a little more complicated, so I need to get some skills mastered first.  Apparently, winter is kinda slow around here LOL!

Hope you all have a wonderful New Year.  Personally, my 2012 is gonna rock!  I am going to 5 day horse camp!!!!!  I'll tell you how we managed it next time!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Intermission: Horse Creek Internships

Ok, the crochet mania post is coming (complete with photos of super cute crocheted things...) however, I had to put this out here for all my 6 readers to see!

Even if you aren't a "horse person" this is a beautiful video and will make you want to intern at Horse Creek!

And BTW- I AM going to horse camp this summer!!!! More details to follow...

Happy Happy Happy!!!!!!!!