Saturday, July 14, 2012

Cowgirl part II

This week M "learned to trot". 
By that I mean that she learned to hold on while Lola trotted. 
It's a lesson I hope sticks!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Cowgirl Maryn

In a lucky turn of events, we've been able to set M up with "horseback riding lessons" this summer. In reality she gets to visit Shannon who usually trains serious riders and horses for shows. But Shannon agreed to let M ride her horses and is showing her how to go, stop, turn, not get killed, etc.
It's pretty much the best thing M can think of doing, well.... maybe if we could find a way to add in a trampoline it might be better, but still.
This Friday M got to ride Lola, just about the sweetest horse you could think of. 
But Big.. and skeptical.
Lola is wondering why, why is this creature here? She had been a good horse, hadn't she?!
Finally M gave Lola some carrots and Lola decided they were best friends.
Shannon taught M to brush Lola and some of the names of the equipment. 
M looks like she is listening, but she's probably just thinking about how soon she can give Lola more carrots. 
 They led Lola down to the arena.
The view from on top of a horse allowed M to see that not only did Shannon have horses, but she had lots of other animals... some of which we have at home but that are super exciting at Shannon's house. There were some distraction problems...

"Shannon has CHICKENS?! MOM!"
"Yes honey, chickens, please HOLD ON."
Shannon had to teach M to say "WEE!" when she is excited instead of "WHOA!".. Evidently Lola doesn't get the difference between an excited Whoa and a please stop-Whoa.

M didn't fall off, so the arena time was a success. 

They got to walk Lola out to the pasture and out to a washing area. They sprayed her down with water (not Lola's favorite) but then gave her some more carrots so all was forgiven. 
We're already looking forward to this Friday!
When is that carrot dispenser coming back?!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Cave Woman

When we bought our new house (yes, I'll get around to posting about THAT some day...), one of the things I was most excited about was the shed.

 Yes, I was super excited about a dark, dingy, spider filled room in a far corner of my yard. Why? Because said room also had 1) a cement pad,  2) a real roof,  3) tiny, but working windows, 4) funky cabinets out of the 50's, and probably most important 5) electricity and working lights. 

Inside, looking at one end from the door...

The other side...Brad was not included...
I kept thinking that someday it would make a nice workshop. 
Someday. Like when I had time to fix it up.
I could see that it had lots of potential, that wasn't the problem.
What I really wanted was to eventually turn it into a woman cave. 
But then reality hit. 
We have a baby on the way and if there is anything that will halt a selfish scheme to make a shed into a woman cave, it's a new baby. 
We all knew that if it this project didn't get done before the baby came, it was never going to happen.
I set my sights reasonably, I only planned to do things I thought I could do myself, or with minimal help. I was going to clean it out,  get some sheet rock on the walls, paint it and the cabinets (if possible) and then move all my crafty stuff in. Oh, and it had to happen before I got too big and couldn't do those things any more. 
Do-able, No?

And this is where my plan was thrown out of the window. While just in the planning stage my plan was shot down... by loving, generous, skilled family and friends that have ideas of their own. Wonderful ideas. 

Brad helped me (read: pretty much did it himself) clean out the room and move out the cabinets that would fit through the door. 
Then BZ's Mom and Randy, fresh off building an entire house, said "Let there be light!" and added two beautiful windows to the front of the shed. 

They also re-ran a bunch of wiring to add more lights inside and out, and so that I could have outlets anywhere I pointed. 
Boy did I do a lot of pointing. 
At this point, things were great, and pretty reasonable. Then they started talking climate control. 
Why not insulate the walls before sheet rocking? 
Because Uncle David has a bunch of insulation just ready to be picked up! (Of course he does. Just like my in laws have extra giant brand new windows lying around waiting to be put on someone's shed). 
I'm not one to say no to free insulation, so in the insulation went. 
Then they sheet rocked the walls as nice and tidy like. 
But wait... if we're going to insulate the walls, we should insulate the ceiling too, right? 
That meant putting sheet rock on the ceiling.
Which meant installing more ceiling joists. 
Which my dad and I totally did. 
Then we insulated and sheet rocked the ceiling with the help of his tall friends Tommy and Richard. 
And it came out something like this:

Oh, did I forget to mention Linda and Randy also PUT IN AN AIR CONDITIONER?
'Cause they did. 
And it's right next to my ironing board. 
And it's awesome. 

So as you can see, things were escalating a bit... 
From here, they decided that to do the job right (and show off their skills) the walls would have to be textured. 

Starting to look less like a shed and more like a Woman Cave
And I decided that the floor had moisture issues, so it needed to be sealed and painted so that it would be easier to clean 
.......During the painting process
 And then the "finish work" started. 
Funny how the finish work takes the longest to be finished. 
First there was painting. Lots of painting. 
I painted two walls yellow and the others white.

Brad scraped and cleaned the cabinets and mom and I primered and painted them

Mom priming the one cabinet we couldn't get our the door....
Mean while, out side we were painting away...

First coats of the final blue color.
Who doesn't want aqua blue cabinets?
The cabinets put back in!
And then the real finish work started... baseboards, window trim, 
all donated by people who "had some lying around",
Never in my life did I think I'd be talking about baseboards and trim FOR MY SHED. 
Then the new lights were installed (also donated).

Then the metal sink board we had kept from when we remodeled the kitchen in the Lloyd house (..6 years ago... yes, I kept an 8ft hunk of metal for 6 years, and moved it to a new house. Because I couldn't let it go, I just new I could use it for SOMETHING. Next time don't question me.)
And finally the counter tops (thanks Dad..., and Brad for all the advice)

Some furniture was added by donation. A couple cabinets that had originally been in my great grandparents house when I was growing up, an old dinning room table my dad had made for my mom's parents with new super sturdy legs.

And all of a sudden the old shed was a Woman Cave. 
Well, not all of a sudden, but in a hundred different moments. 
And I appreciated everyone of them. 
Here's to The Cave and all the people who made it happen!