Sorry for the delay in posts.  My life has been crazy lately.  A few months ago I was called out of the blue and offered a job in Kentucky that I couldn't pass up.  So we have been busy trying to get everything ready for the move and selling our house in NC.  We are going to be sad to leave our friends in NC, but are thrilled to be moving home to KY!  Land of horses and wildcat basketball....  




I like wreaths, but I don't like spending a lot of money on them.  Or changing them every few months.  Or the froo-froo wreaths at stores.  I have a spring / summer wreath, but I really wanted one that I could leave up for fall and winter.  After some shopping at Michael's and a local farm store, this is what I came up with:


Winter Goals

I cannot believe that winter is almost here.  I don't like cold.  I don't like staying indoors.  I especially don't like short days and long nights.  Boo.  I have realized that I do much better (ie don't get depressed) when I have a project for the winter.  Last winter my project was studying (yuck yuck yuck).  The previous winter I trained for a half-marathon. (That got snowed out.  In Myrtle Beach.  Go figure.)  So what will I try to accomplish this winter?  What will keep me off of the couch and away from the life-sucking television?  Two things (so far):

1)  I will dust off the tread-mill and try to stay in shape (implying I already am in shape...kind of)

2)  I am going to make a barn quilt.  I am so so sooo excited about this project.  Even though we don't have a big fancy barn (it's going on my run-in shelter) and only 8 or so people will ever see it (dead-end gravel road), I still can't wait to make it so I can see it and smile every day.  I haven't decided on a pattern yet, but I'm pretty sure the color purple will be involved.  In case you are not familiar with barn quilts, just check out www.americanquiltbarns.com.  Here are some pictures from their website:


Northern Kentucky

We made a quick trip to Kentucky this weekend to celebrate Mark's grandfather's 80th birthday.  Here are some pictures from his aunt and uncle's back porch.  You can't see it, but the Ohio River is just past the tree line.


New Floors!

Here are the much-anticipated pictures of our new floors.  We love them!

(don't worry, the carpet squares are gone now)

Storm Damage

We got through the hurricane relatively unscathed.  We lost a bradford pear in the front yard and had a leak in our roof that will have to be repaired.  We never lost power, though, and the horses just stuck their butts to the wind and ate through the whole affair.  The worst of the storm was from 2 - 6 am, so I wasn't able to take any pictures during that time frame because it was so dark out.  I took some Saturday morning, though.

water damage to our ceiling

bradford pear down

still windy Saturday morning

Thanks to everyone who emailed and called to check on us!


Good day at work...

You know it is a good day at work when the ice cream truck shows up and it is free.  Woohoo!

Oh, and we get out early (noon) tomorrow for the hurricane.


Mother Nature

So I guess you have heard of Irene by now.  As in HURRICANE IRENE.  We are very excited (nervous) about the possibility of our first hurricane.  This afternoon I was sitting at my desk looking at the latest projected storm path (and working, of course) when I noticed my chair and computer monitor shaking.  And they kept shaking.  That's when I realized how lucky I am.  I mean, how many people get to experience an earthquake and hurricane in the same week?

ps.  I will post pictures of my new floors (that I absolutely love) soon.  Maybe after the hurricane...



I have run out of things to say.  My life is so completely boring that I have nothing to post about.  I am a slacker who has already given up on my blog.

Okay, not really.

The truth:  this is the time of year when I hardly have time to sit down and eat, much less blog.  We have finally started to get rain on a regular basis and that combined with 90+ temps equals everything growing out of control.  I am too ashamed to show you a picture of my (weed) garden.  The only garden plant surviving is the watermelon.  I have one more big one I'm waiting to pick and then I'm done.  That's not to say there aren't plenty of other plants growing in the garden, just not plants originally planted by me.  Oops.  :)

We are also in the midst of a home-renovation of sorts.  We are getting new flooring installed everywhere except the kitchen and bathrooms.  Very exciting, yes, but it means we have to move almost everything out of our house and then back in again in a few weeks.  I think it is difficult to have a real appreciation of how much stuff you have until you need to move it.  My arms were definitely appreciating it this weekend.  I will try to take some before and after pictures during all the chaos to share.


Humble Pie

It just so happens that this weekend there was a watermelon festival in the tiny town of Fair Bluff, NC, which is about an hour and a half from us.  On Thursday night when I picked my 93 lb watermelon and found out about the festival a few hours later I thought it was a sign.  I was going to take my melon to the festival and sweep the blue ribbons (or at least the white ones...).  So Saturday morning we woke up at 6 am (!) so we could get to the festival in time for the large melon competition.  I was like a puffed-up rooster thinking I had this awesome watermelon that was going to win all the prizes.  When we got to Fair Bluff (don't blink - you'll miss it), we stopped to ask where we were supposed to take the watermelon to be weighed.  As we were pulling away, Mark thought to ask what the winning weight normally was.  To my astonishment, the gentleman answered, "200 lbs".  WHAT?  Hold balloon.  Insert pin.  Deflate.  That is how I felt.  To pacify my injured ego we decided to go to Hardee's in the next town over for breakfast.  Walking from the truck to the restaurant we saw a giant, no, a colossal watermelon in the back of someone's truck.  It had blue ribbon written all over it.

(On the bright side, I did learn a few things.  1)  Watermelons can reach 200 lbs.  This will give me something to strive for the next few years.  It's good to know I didn't peak too soon.  2)  When you cut your prize-winning melon off the vine, you should cut a few feet of vine with it and place the end of the vine in a bucket of water.  This will keep the melon from dehydrating.  When I have a 200 lb watermelon, you better believe I will do this.)


Where's the Fair?

This is what I pulled out of the garden tonight:

Ok, so maybe Mark pulled it out.  :)  I tried to lift it, but I couldn't because it weighs 93 lbs!!!  What is my secret?  Horse manure!  I have an unlimited supply!  My goal was to beat my 59 lb watermelon from last year, but I really didn't expect to grow one quite as large as this.  I may have raised the bar too high for next year.  :)  I'll have to try to break into triple digits.  Here are some more pictures from tonight:



Just as an update to the potato post, here is what the purple (or blue) potatoes look like chopped up.  Who wouldn't want to eat such awesomeness?


Meet the Family

Well, you've already met the cats a few times now, but I haven't introduced the horses yet.  (And since this blog does have the word "equine" in the title, I feel obligated to post about them some...)  So, I would like to introduce Strawberry, April, and Thunder.  Strawberry and April moved to North Carolina with us from Kentucky and Thunder joined our family last year.

Strawberry staying out of the heat.

April doing some ground work.

Thunder waiting to be ridden.


Happy Monday!

I'm sorry I've been a slacker lately and haven't updated my blog.  I guess I have been too busy living my life to write about it.  (Which is not a bad thing, I think.)  I've been busy in the evenings riding.  April and I are both taking lessons and it has been very interesting for both of us to unlearn our bad habits and relearn the good.  I never realized April is a pacer ( I knew she was gated, just not that she paced) until we started all of this, and I have been trying to teach her to trot.  I'm sure we are quite comical to watch since neither of us really know what we are doing.  But, we are having fun and getting in shape!

I don't have any pictures of April and me training, but I do have some funny pictures from this weekend of the cats.  Apparently, my cats like to hide and think they are doing such a good job of it.

Rex hiding the muscadine vine.  He is probably hoping to kill something.

Barnabus hiding under the grill cover.  (??)  I guess he thinks we can't see him...

Happy Monday!


In The Night

As many of you know, Andrew Peterson is my favorite singer / song-writer / musician / artist / ... you get the picture.  His newest album, Counting Stars, has been playing non-stop in my car for the past few months.  It's very difficult for me to pick a favorite song, but right now "In the Night" is winning.  I am no linguist, so I am having a hard time coming up with the words that best describe what I think, but in short it is beautiful.


Sweet and Sour

That pretty much describes the personalities of my two cats.  Barnabus is the sweetest cat I have ever owned (and that is saying something if you know how many cats I have had...).  He is a little bashful around strangers, but he is full of love for people he likes.  Every morning on my way to the barn to feed all the animals he stops three or four times to be petted.  In contrast, Rex (aka O'Beast, Bad Cat) runs straight to the barn and meows the whole way.  In fact, from the time I get home from work he is at my feet meowing to make sure I know it is food time.  To be fair, Rex is not really a bad cat, he is just loud and a little bit bossy.  But I love them both.  :)  Can you tell which one is which?


Public Enemy #1

They are terrorists.  They bombard your space and destroy everything in their path.  They cling to you and won’t let go.  You can kill them, but they will always have a brother ready to step in and take their place.  But I am waging war, and this is a battle I refuse to lose.  I will take no prisoners.  I aim to kill.

All joking aside, these little buggers are nasty.  They are eating up my roses, grapes, cherry trees, crepe myrtle, etc.  What do they not eat?  At first I tried knocking them into a bucket of water to kill them, but the next day there would be hundreds more.  So now I have four beetle bags hanging to catch them and I have sprayed what plants I can with insecticide.  Seems to work.  We have caught thousands of beetles and each day we empty all the bags into a bucket of water, put the lid on, and let them cook out in the sun.  (Is it sick that I enjoy the thought of them roasting?)  Our plants are doing much better now, with only a few beetles brave enough to land on them.  Sweet victory.


Potato Harvest

Some people like to party.  Some people like to stay up late and (what do you do after 9???).  I have always had a thing for dirt.  So I was on cloud nine today as I harvested my first potato crop.  Dirty finger nails, dirty knees, and most importantly, loads and loads of potatoes!  I planted gold potatoes and blue potatoes and I had many many more than I expected.  Oh, the joy...

Enough potatoes to cover the kitchen table.
Some were almost as big as my hand!

Baked potatoes, mashed potatoes, fried potatoes, potato soup, potato casserole... the possibilities are endless!!


My Favorite Flower

My absolute favorite flower is the Day Lily.  And they are so so easy to care for.  Now if only their blooms would last longer than a day...