Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Dazzled by the New (Year)


May this year be everyone's very best!

My goals for 2009 are
  • Sell my car. I have to! I bought the Infiniti to keep but financially, I just can't.
  • Get my Associate's Degree and maybe move on to a Bachelor's. It all depends on if I can get a Pell Grant or a FASFA loan. I should have my Associate's by the end of summer no matter what.
  • Find a good job. This depends on the goal above. I may look in April/May and finish the last couple of classes at night over the summer for the Associate's or just stay in school if I can afford it.
  • Ride and train my horses.
  • Clean my house!!! Declutter and throw away unwanted, unnecessary stuff.
  • Work on my book. Nothing more to say because it's all in my head at this time.
  • Go Letterboxing and hiking. Maybe canoeing? Maybe camping?
  • Exercise!

I'm sure there's plenty more but I can't think of them at present. What are your resolution for the new year?

Dazzled by the New - song: Strangers When We Meet, artist: David Bowie, album: Outside

loves chimney stacks

I like to have a nice toasty fire like this one
in my wood stove. It keeps us warm on cold days. But chimney fires are a potential hazard. Chimneys need to be cleaned regularly to remove the creosote buildup.

Today dawned nice and sunny, and moderately warm, so I decided it was a perfect day to clean our chimney. Instead of lighting a fire in our wood stove, my son, Trevor, and I got out the chimney cleaning kit.
My son climbed on the roof and fed the brush down the chimney while I anxiously watched from the ground.
It only took about ten minutes! This brown pile is what fell down the chimney. YUK!!!
We celebrated a job well done with a couple of bottles of beer. Erm, IBC root beer. What'd ya think??
Buddha decided to join us.

while the horses lazed in their fields.

Loves Chimney Stacks - song: Jean Genie, artist: David Bowie, album: Aladdin Sane

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Our Finest Gifts

Well, folks, there really IS a Santa Claus! And this year, in my house, his name is Ross!! He gave the family a desktop computer so I am back on line!!!

My laptop has been having terrible issues this year. This will be the fourth or fifth cord to be replaced since last January. The first year I had it, all was great. But now, in the second year, the cord keeps quitting out. At first we thought it was power surges but then we got a surge protector. Thank goodness, I have an extended warranty! I know computers aren't supposed to last more than a year or two but I went crazy and bought a four year warranty so I will be sending it back forever! However, I don't know what information I will lose. I pulled the hard drive unto a portable hard drive using my son's computer but there are problems with recalling the information now. And my laptop has zero power so I can't get anything from it. I need to send it in for repairs but it will come back with an erased hard drive so I'm reluctant to send it out yet until I can collect all the info.

Anyway, what a happy day Christmas was. My son really surprised me! He is twenty two and, yes, they really do grow up into fine, caring, young people! Of course, he will also benefit from this because he is looking for a job working from the house and needs a good computer. I am elated because when I get my laptop back it will be all MINE! My teenage son will NOT be playing his games on it.

Although we had a "smaller than usual" Christmas we still had a fantastyk one! I got horse books from my Mom:

  • Feeding your Horse for Life (Diane Morgan)- This is a rather interesting book all about feed and nutrients. Did you know that the horse' s small intestine is 72 feet long?? I guess that's why it's so easy for them to twist while rolling when colicking. The esophagus is 5 feet long! That's why they can't burp or throw up. Humans and horses are the only animals with sweat glands on their bodies. And horses are made up of 70% water. And that's only the first two chapters!

  • Know Your Horse Inside Out (Sarah Fisher)- This looks like an interesting guide on conformation and personality and how to work with your horse to improve posture and behavior.

  • Educating the Young Horse (The Thinking Trainer's Guide) (Julian Westall)- This book tells how to analyse horse behavior and modify training methods to get a well-rounded, happy and athletic young horse. I will be needing this for Annie's baby and I can certainly use it for Scout and Annie now.
I also got a Cartouche pendant from my Mom.
What is a Cartouche? A Cartouche (pronounced "kar-toosh") is actually a French word meaning 'gun cartridge'. When Napoleon's soldiers were in Egypt, they called the oval shaped etchings surrounding the king names "cartouche" because it reminded them of the shape of their gun cartridges, or bullets. Cartouches have a a long lasting legend that dates back over 5000 years ago. A Cartouche was originally designed for the Pharaohs to be an amulet of protection. Each Cartouche had the name of the person wearing it written in Egyptian Hieroglyphics King Tut... Ramses... Nefertiti... Cleopatra.
This is my name spelled in heiroglyphics. Very cool!!!

I received a bottle of Obsession perfume from my daughter (!) and a pumice stone for my poor cracked, calloused heels. I have been wearing Obsession for years and get compliments from both men and women about smelling good. :) I also got a box of Godiva chocolate from Ross and a lovely horse calendar from Lisa at LaughingOrcaRanch. What a Christmas! ! Also, Lisa gave me a handmade knit hat and muffler set a few weeks ago. I just love it! It's made with Alpaca, Camel, and Mohair and is so soft!! And, before her accident, she baked a bunch of cookies and shared them with my family in a beautiful little tin (I collect tins!).

On Christmas Eve day, my mother, son, and I went to town for a green chili cheeseburger from the Owl Cafe in ABQ for lunch (yummy) and then I rode with my neighbor Lisa in the snow. We had a wonderful little ride until her accident, poor thing!

Then my two sons, my mother, and I went to a candlelight service at our church. We enjoyed singing the traditional Christmas carols and seeing the Christmas lights on the way home. It's extra special when there is snow on the ground!

We had roast beef and pan roasted potatoes for Christmas Day and for dessert, my favorite! Bush Noel, or Yule Log which is a frozen sponge cake roll with lots of chocolate frosting and mocha creme filling! I threw on some of my holly cookies for decoration. Yummy!!!

Holly Cookies
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) margarine or butter
  • 28 to 32 large marshmallows
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 & 1/2 tsps green food coloring
  • 4 & 1/2 cups corn flakes cereal
  • red hot candies
Melt margarine and marshmallows in large saucepan, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Remove from heat and add vanilla and food coloring. Then mix in corn flakes. Drop by tablespoonful onto greased wax paper. Decorate with red hot candies.

I hope everyone had as nice a holiday as I did and may this year bring all good things!

Our Finest Gifts - song: Little Drummer Boy, artist: David Bowie, Merrie Olde Christmas TV Special with Bing Crosby

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas time

It looks like I'm going to be down for a while with computer problems again. Hope everyone has a very Happy Christmas and a Wonderful New Year!

Christmas time - line from Bowie and Bing Merrie Olde Christmas special

Saturday, December 20, 2008

John Lennon

Here is John Lennon's song - Happy Christmas (War is Over!)

John Lennon = Merrie Olde Christmas Special with Bing Crosby, Bowie mentions him.

Friday, December 19, 2008

They Throw the Balls

I just love this commercial (although not the product)
Please drink responsibly- Don't Drink and Drive!

They Throw the Balls - song: Karma Man, artist: David Bowie, album: Deram Songs

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Cut him down

I will be having a small Christmas this year due to my financial crisis but that doesn't mean I can't decorate, right?

Last weekend, my son and I took a very quick trip north to visit my Mom. She lives about 3 hours away, near Angel Fire. I have a little cabin at the top of the mountain, whereas she lives at the bottom, by the river. We left in the evening and were amazed at the full moon. The sky was so very bright!! I've heard that the moon is closest to the Earth than ever. Is this true?

We enjoyed our little trip in the silvery night and arrived at my Mom's with no problems. We planned on staying in my cabin overnight. We stayed a little while, visiting with my mom, and then we started up the road in my big truck. It was very icy and I decided to turn around after the truck fishtailed in the road. I'm sure we could have made it but I didn't want to get stuck if it were to snow a lot overnight. There were also deep trenches on the sides of the road for runoff and I certainly didn't want to slide into one of those in the darkness. We went back down the hill and stayed at my Mom's, nice and warm.

I cooked a breakfast of french toast and bacon in the morning. There was a little fresh snow overnight and high winds, but we decided to make a quick trip up the hill to cut the tree on my land. I had no problems this time because of the fresh snow covering the ice patches. There was another big storm coming in later so we had to do this quickly if we were going to get home in fair weather.

Here's Trevor on the porch of my cabin. My cabin sure looks big there!
While we were wandering about in the woods he found a spine and pelvis(?)

I wonder what kind of animal this came from. Any ideas?
We decided to take this tree because it was growing under a large pine. You can't see the top but it really is pretty even though the tree is a bit thin. Hey, New Mexico is not known for premium Christmas trees.
Now for the decorating. We decided not to put lights on it since it's in the middle of the room. The little tree in front lights up and that's what people see from the outside. I shut the blinds for the picture. Usually I leave them open. I like lots of light.

Cut him down - song: Baby Can Dance, artist: Tin Machine, album: Tin Machine

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Eat This Candy

I really love to cook!

My horses love to eat treats!
So, I decided to cook them some treats!

I gathered all the ingredients I thought I'd need:

Then I started mixing them up. I used:
1-1/2 cups flour
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup cracked corn
1/2 cup brown sugar
1-1/2 Tbls molasses
1 tsp salt
2-3 Tbls oil
scant 1/2 cup water

I rolled them into balls and then flattened them. Then I baked them in the oven at 375 degrees for 10-12 minutes, or until lightly browned.

Here's the finished product. The green ones on the right have vitamin supplements in them. My original thought was to put in the daily vitamin supplements so I could hand feed them, but there's too much in a daily dose for a little snack cookie.

My horses love them! And they're good for 'em too. Almost good enough for me to eat!

But, I make people candy too!

This year I've made:
  • Biscochitos
  • Chocolate Covered Pretzels
  • Chocolate Orange Jellies
  • Gingerbread Babies (boys, girls, rocking horses, and bears)
  • Gumdrop Cookies
  • Holly Cookies
  • Peanut Brittle
  • Peanut Butter Balls
  • Pinto Bean Fudge
  • Rocky Road Fudge
  • Sugar Cookies
  • and Beef Jerky

Mmmm!! I don't know if I prefer eating them or making them! (Although making them is less fattening! hehe)

Eat this Candy - song: Looking for Water, artist: David Bowie, album: Reality

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Just the Pinkness

When I went to feed my horses this morning, I decided to bring along my camera. I was glad I did. Look at the beautiful skies!
This is looking northeast.
looking northwest
This is looking west. Isn't that streak just wild?
Here is the sun rising to the east

Just the Pinkness - song: Karma Man, artist: David Bowie, album: Deram songs

Monday, December 15, 2008

Do you hear what I hear?

I love this song so much!

Do you Hear What I Hear? Sung by Perry Como

AHa- there IS a bowie song with this line!!

Do you hear what I hear? - song: That's Motivation, artist David Bowie, album: Absolute Beginners soundtrack

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Magic Dance

I've been experimenting with my camera and taking videos and I've decided that my little dog is better in action than still shots. He won't be still; he's always dancing around.

Here he is giving a High Five!

and here he is dancing

Here's a still. Crazy huh?

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Jump They Say

I love watching jumping horses but I must confess, I just don't think I could EVER do that! I find it incredible that this horse is jumping obstacles that are taller than the fences used to contain my horses. Heck, those jumps are taller than my horses!

I can't imagine riding this course. I have a terrible memory and I get in a panic any time I have to remember a course, such as in trail or equitation classes. I want to learn dressage, but again, I'm afraid of taking the tests.

Anyway, enjoy!

Jump They Say - song: Jump they say, artist David Bowie, album: Black Tie White Noise

Friday, December 12, 2008

Waves of Joy

This is a good message for the world-

Joy to the World, (A Christmas Prayer)!!!
sung by Nicholas Jonas

Waves of Joy - song: Across the Universe, Artist: David Bowie covers John Lennon, album: Young Americans

Tell Me

I've been tagged for a MeMe by CDnCowgirl so here goes:
  1. I am allergic to shopping. Well, actually, not an allergy, just a secondary reaction, they call it. (See 5 for more details.) Whenever I go shopping in malls, I take a tylenol first because I get a tremendous headache and itchy, watery eyes. I think it is from all the different smells and sizings of the clothes. But I love the smells, especially in the bath shops!
  2. I always print except for my signature. We moved when I was in third grade and learning to write cursive. I missed a few lessons because the new school was already writing cursive. I caught on and wrote in school when I had to, but to this day I feel uncomfortable writing in cursive. I also write larger than most people. (Is that because I can't see well, I wonder?)
  3. I began wearing glasses in fourth grade. When I got a job I bought contacts because I always hated my glasses. For many years now, I've hated contacts too. I always had the gas permeable ones but they got deposit build up all the time and I couldn't see very well. It got to where I was only wearing one. That way I could always see SOMETHING while I was driving because they always fogged up on me in stressful situations. Although, sometimes, I could get up in the morning and see perfectly for a while without any contacts. My doctor said it was from the pressure of the hard lenses against the cornea. In recent years, I tried soft lenses and they were worse. So, this year, I went and got glasses! No more blurring of contacts. Now I can see! However, I still have one lens stronger than the other-monovision-so that I can see far or read without changing my glasses. That stems from my one contact days. But, I don't have to wear bifocals! yay!
  4. When I was a little girl I had platinum blond hair and it was straight. Then my hair turned brown. As a teenager I had hair down to my waist. Then I finally cut it in my early twenties and I have NEVER had hair longer than shoulder length since. After I cut it I used to get these ghastly curly perms which always turned my hair frizzy until I realized that my hair was naturally curly. Now I just go with it and cut it in layers to make it curly. Haircutters always ask me if my hair has been permed.
  5. I am allergic to dogs and horses! I took allergy tests and then shots for a while until I had a huge allergic reaction (long story-another time, perhaps) but it turns out that I am allergic to dogs and horses, ragweed, juniper, mulberry trees, and dust. I don't have too many symptoms anymore that a tylenol can't cure. When I go skiing my nose just drips and my eyes burn, because that is when the junipers are pollinating. I also try to take tylenol for shopping trips. My doctor explained that although I have certain allergens, other things can give allergic reactions, like shopping and second hand smoke. When I used to go to bars, or anyplace with cigarette smoke, I would wake up the next morning with a huge hangover, even if I never drank.
  6. I decided a long time ago not to let life pass me by. I want to be all I can be. If there is an opportunity to go somewhere or do something, I jump at the chance. I'm always up for new adventures. Change is Good!

Tell Me - song: Somebody up there likes me, artist: David Bowie, album: Young Americans

Thursday, December 11, 2008

And Mud of Many Acres

This is for Lisa regarding her muck boots post.

Mud Boots or Muddy Horse?

And Mud of Many Acres - song: Come and Buy my Toys, artist: David Bowie, album: Deram Songs

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Look at that sky

More about Bosque Del Apache as promised.

Our main reason for going was to letterbox. And get that Owl Cafe burger! But we also went for the birds!

BDA is a winter habitat for mass quantities of snow geese, sandhill cranes, and other waterfowl. Years ago, we used to see the Whooping Cranes which was very exciting. At the time, there were less than a dozen or so.

We wanted to get there at sunset to experience the mass flyover as the birds settle in for the night. However, we ran a little overlong on the letterboxing and missed the biggest part of the flyover. We still did get to see a lot of birds flying in AND we heard the wings over our heads which was a rush!
Here's the road into Bosque Del Apache.

We stopped at the visitor's center. Here's Lisa spreading her wings! Her arm span is just a little longer than a Canada Goose but not nearly as long as a whooping crane!
This is a veiw of the Wetlands sans birds.

This was from our letterboxing hike.

And now, it's time for the birds >>> >>

The light was getting really bad for my camera although the sunset was very pretty.
Here's my first attempt at video. This was a blue heron in the twilight.

Look at that sky - song: Golden Years, artist: David Bowie, album: Stationtostation

Monday, December 8, 2008

Cactus tree

Yesterday, I went letterboxing with my friend and neighbor, Lisa, her twin sons, Jax and Jem, their friend, Linda Sue, and her twin daughters, Raquel and Santana. We went to Bosque Del Apache, which is a wildlife and bird refuge. To find out more about Bosque Del Apache, read here.

It was a beautiful day, in the 50s and 60s, and no wind. The sky was overcast with clouds but there was no threat of rain. We planned to have a world famous green chile cheeseburger with grilled onions and french fries at The Owl Bar and Cafe in San Antonio but they are closed on Sundays. Big Drag!

So we ate at Acosta's Mexican Restaurant instead. I had a Christmas (red and green chile) burrito with potatoes and ground beef. It was good but just not the same...

This was a gallery across the street. I love this photo, the skeleton trees, the shape and colors of the building, and all the outdoor art.

At Bosque Del Apache, we toured the cactus gardens. There were several outdoor sculptures.

And primitive shelters with benches for shade.

Here's the very Lovely Lisa and her handsome twin boys, Jax and Jem.

Here are some photos of the cacti. I'm sorry, but I can't remember what they're all called! I'll just name the ones I can remember.
I think the one on the right is a cholla (pronounced cho-ya).
Golden barrel? Pretty, isn't it?This one is called a Horse Crippler Cactus. WOW! Look at those spikes!
This one is called Christmas Cactus. It has lots of red berries and is gorgeous!

This is a Pencil Cholla.
I thought this cactus was rather interesting. It's called an Arizona Rainbow. It kinda blew me away! What do you think of it? This was an interesting sculpture of a scorpion.

I really "dug" this critter. It was made with a shovel and a railroad spike.
To be continued...

Cactus tree- song: Cactus, artist: David Bowie covering the Pixies, album: Heathen