Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Life is Full of Adventure

Life is full of adventure. Traveling adventures to be specific. Since the beginning of the new year I've traveled a lot and I hope this trend continues through the year.

For my birthday in January I flew to Phoenix, Arizona first then Atlanta, Georgia next, and finally a car ride to Alabama.  It was a fabulous trip and I was able to spend my birthday with my sister Heidi, her husband David, and their exchange student from Italy, Anna. Highlights of the trip include:
Eating at a really neat Japanese restaurant where they grill the food in front of you.
Alabama got snow!
Heidi and I went to the Natural History museum and then ate Thai food in Anniston.
We played board games.
We played more games.
And even more board games!
On my birthday I got to sing in the Methodist Church choir with Heidi.
We had lasagna for my birthday dinner (my request) along with yellow cake and chocolate frosting.
We ate fabulous cookies from a bakery in Anniston and I drank lots of hot chocolate.
I got to open presents!
All around it was a great birthday!

Last weekend Jane and I traveled up to Red Bluff, California for the Red Bluff Bull and Gelding Sale. It rained so much it wasn't even funny... We had some little hiccups like the fact that the power box was about 100 feet from where we parked Jane's horse trailer, but it was a fun trip. We got tickets to the sponsor dinner, which was really fun! They had meat. Lots of meat. We are talking about New York Steak, meat balls, ribs, and lots of shrimp. Plus it was an open bar, so of course I had to get a drink because I wanted one of the wine glasses that said "Red Bluff 75th Anniversary."

Tomorrow (Thursday at about 4am) Jane and I are going to hit the road and drive down to southern California to Pomona. We will be at the Pomona Horse Expo for the weekend.  Then the following weekend we will fly to Portland Oregon to attend the sportsman expo.

It'll be a lot of travel - but it sure will be fun!

Tiny House Living

My journey of living in a not so perfect but charismatic and charming Tuff Shed... I mean tiny house.

When I moved to California the plan was to move into a tiny house. A whole 120 square feet all to myself located right behind Jane's house. The building was originally a Tuff Shed used to store saddles and tack. One of Jane's dear friends came up with the plan to convert this little shed into my future house. 

My tiny house is connected to main water, sewer, and propane. I use a little electric heater in the winter and a window air conditioner in the summer (which is a must have given the heat in California). I have a small refrigerator under the starts, a standard size stall shower, a queen size bed, two dressers, a full size stainless steel kitchen sink, water heater, apartment size propane stove/oven, toilet, writing desk, love seat (which doubles as my dogs bed at night), microwave, and a bookshelf. I also have a rail to hang clothes on, a place for shoes, a little shelf which serves as my night stand, and more windows than I know what to do with. There is a window over my sink, desk, love seat, one behind my upstairs dresser and one next to my bed. Not to mention the two sky lights.

There are some flaws in my house though. Nothing that was flawed in R's design but my own doing. I refused to give up my desk or dresser and insisted on having a full size sink and oven. Plus I a girl am therefore have a ridiculous amount of shoes, clothes, and horse/western decor. Oh and jewelry.    Lots of jewelry. 

I wish I had a better system for food/dishes storage. That's a work in progress. Another issue is that my clothes rail is too short and my shirts hand on the ground but I'm limited by the angle and height of the wall. So far those are the only real issues I have... And the heater is on the fritz but I'm researching a new heater with a thermostat. I would love an adorable little (fake) electric wood stove but that's probably out of the question. 

My tiny house has so much character. From the stain glass windows that my mother made years ago to the steel rose by the sink. It is crooked too. Like the house I grew up in. The counter is mahogany and gorgeous, just like the stair/ladder combo that leads to the loft. 

I also have the cutest porch in the world. I've got old brick on the bottom and a tin roof on top. Then some of Jane's rocking chairs and a little table to set a cup on. 

There is also a kennel for Scout in case he needs it, but most days when we are gone he stays inside Jane's house with Josephine, Nellie, and Dooley.

Life is good here in tiny house nation. 

Saturday, December 19, 2015

A lack of blogging

I have not blogged in nearly a year. I was first worried that perhaps this meant that my life had become boring. But I don't think that means I am boring at all, just busy.

I still live in my beautiful tiny house next to Jane's in Auburn. (I'll post pictures in another blog post.)  Since I last blogged I have had a job change and now work at In Depth Vision as a vision therapist. It's the most amazing job. I am able to change lives with vision therapy. Dr. O is an amazing Doctor and Jane keeps the whole office running smoothly. 

Christmas is coming next week. Last year I celebrated Christmas with Jane and her wonderful family. This year my mom and dad will be traveling down from the lodge to spend Christmas here. 

I will try to blog more often. Maybe even once more today. 

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

It's that time again... Resolutions

BI'm one of those people that writes down resolutions the first of each new year then doesn't actually look at them until the eve of the next year, when I arbitrarily determine I need a new set of resolutions (even if I've failed to accomplish the one's I had set for the exiting year). So in honoring and continuing that tradition, let's look at what I wanted to do  in 2014 (see if they happened) and write down some resolutions for 2015.

For 2014 my resolutions were:
1. Travel. I traveled. To expos and to different states. To new restaurants and new places.
2. Ride my horse somewhere new and different. I went to an ACHTA ride in Prescott,Washington. We rode through the Broetje Apple Orachard; miles of apples along the Snake River.
3. Learn how to properly work my new DSLR. Check.
4. Continue to keep a healthy body weight and maintain muscle tone. Sure??
5. Read at least a novel a month. Perhaps. I didn't keep track. I can however tell you that my favorite book of 2014 was Unbroken.
6. Craft. Painted a lighthouse in oil. Took 2nd at the county fair.
7. Work with Kiwi (my new baby horse). Of course.
8. Learn to do something new. Not that I can think of off the top of my head.
9. Learn how to properly drive a team. That way, eventually I can purchase a new draft horse or mule team and use them at the lodge, in parades, etc. I did AND I purchase my first draft mule team - Kit & Kat!
10. Try a new equine sport. I didn't really get the chance to do an endurance race or anything like that. Next year maybe?

2015 Resolutions:
1. Work hard at my new job.
2. Eat healthier. I want my body to last.
3. On that same note, drink more water.
4. Go on an actual date. 
5. Start exercising more, like run a 5k or do some crunches.
6. Start new friendships and keep old ones alive.
7. Travel.
8. Learn something new.
9. Ride my horse new places.
10. Be nicer to myself.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

My life

What have I done to my life? I've moved myself to California and am going to be living in a tiny home. (Literally. See here: Tiny House Movement)  I think I'm annoying the person I live with. I work at a vets office; and I know nothing about veterinary work.  I probably threw away the greatest thing ever.

What have I done to myself?

Thursday, December 18, 2014


I've not blogged in a very long time, which is funny because so much has happened. Like the fact I moved to California. Or got a job at a veterinary clinic. Or now live someone who used to work for me. 

Life is funny how is can change on you, no?

This change has been very difficult for me and I assume that it will conure to be difficult, especially as summer nears.

So, why did I change everything up? That's a great question. I guess I wanted a change... Needed a change perhaps. I still feel unsteady most everyday but I think this is the right place to be right now. I do wish I was home for the holidays in all the snow at Cornucopia. I won't get be around my family which is sad, but I am around great friends. I have a chance to participate in a lot of events and festivities, like tonight Jane and I are heading to Bayside for a Christmas service. It should be loads of fun!

I'm hoping that my feelings settle and I am reassured this is the right decision. Plus now that I've admitted to living in California I think I'll be back to blogging more. Hopefully.   

Friday, November 21, 2014

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Woman of the West

I am a woman of the west and these are some of my thoughts:

For as long as I can remember I've been riding horses and pulling pack strings in the Eagle Cap Wilderness of northeast Oregon; where within the span of a day you can go from rolling hills of sage brush, to lush evergreen forests, to steep granite peaks.

Growing up we raised registered black angus cattle. As a small child I taught my first bull calf Buster to play the game of "tag." As it turned out this wasn't the brightest idea when he turned into a 1,700 lb  full grown bull.

I grew up just outside of a small town, but with our numerous ranches and vast acres on the main homestead it seemed like the world was my playground. And it was. I would wake before the sun, pack a lunch in my saddle bags, and ride the range until dusk. I often wonder what my mother thought about this ordeal.

Work. I know the feeling of a sweat drenched shirt, callused hands, and cut up arms. I am strong. As a wilderness guide and packer I can easily lift things that weigh more than half of my body weight. However, this said, I know what a sore back and sore muscles feel like.

I love the mornings. One of the most beautiful things is to watch the sun come up and greet you. The air is clear, the day is not yet cluttered, and it is the start to a new beginning.

My horses are my passion but also my live hood. I have put horses down, lost a horse in the wilderness to a high line, and also lost (I like to say "misplaced") eighteen head. Those eighteen mules and horses wandered the Eagle Cap Wilderness only to be collected weeks later.  Some would show up in a ranchers field, a few wandered into town, several came back to the pack station, and two mules ended up in Enterprise... the opposite side of the wilderness area.

One of my favorite spots in the entire Eagle Cap Wilderness is Pine Lakes, on the southern edge of the Eagle Cap Wilderness. Those three high mountain lakes are on an incredibly steep trail, but that every step of that trail is worth getting to those lakes. With the pristine granite and ever blue water it is an ideal place to take a dip, eat a hearty lunch, spend a week camping, or just take in the mountain air.

Dirt. I love dirt. Cover me in some good ol' brown Oregon dirt, add some pine needles, and you have more entire wardrobe almost complete.

A cowgirl has to have a truck. And I've never owned anything but trucks. From my first Chevrolet Silverado to my Ford Lariat I love those big ol' rigs. I've got the beautiful horse trailer for going to town but then I have my trusty stock trailer. Complete with dings, custom deer dings, and nonworking brakes.