Wednesday, June 26, 2013


Jaxon and I liberated a Crabpot off the sandbar at The Compound.

Taking it Home
Jaxon swam out to the sand bar, then ran all over chasing birds.  Then we swam back to the beach.  Jaxon was so full of sand and mud, I hosed him off, which he hated.

Tired Puppy
He slept really good last night!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Jumping For Joy

Jakes has been doing riding lessons for about 3 years now.  He's been through several teachers over the years.  They have all been great teachers and he's learned things from them all.  One day we arrived to find another new teacher, Miss Torri.  She's been riding since she was 8 months old.  WOW!  Miss Torri brought her mother with her.  Miss Eileen has worked with horses and in many barns over the years.  She has been away from it for a long time.

Being at Ms Jill's farm is a healing experience.  And the farm worked its magic on Ms. Eileen as well.  She stood there watching all the kids, the ones taking lessons and the ones who were there early to work for their lessons. 

Ms. Jill was running behind on some lessons and asked Ms. Eileen to step in and help out.  It all came back to Ms. Eileen and she was in heaven.  She didn't realize how much she had been missing this until she stepped into the ring. 

That was three weeks ago and she has given Jakes his lessons every week that they've both been there.  She fell in love with my Jakes and who wouldn't?   He fell in love with her too.  Ms. Jill asked him to work with Ms Eileen, making sure she had the horses she needed, etc. 

Jakes and Eileen formed a wonderful team.  Ms. Eileen would be in the middle of the ring, tracking the progress of the horse and rider with Jakes walking (or running) beside the horse in case the rider needed assistance.  He listened to everything that Ms. Eileen was telling the rider and would help to remind the rider of their position, helping them to correct it before Ms. Eileen could. Ms. Eileen loved that Jakes was learning everything she was putting down for the other riders and she wanted to see if he would be able to apply it to his lessons.

For the last three weeks, Ms. Eileen has been giving Jakes his lessons and I have seen SO MUCH progress in him!  With the other teachers, Jakes would say "I'm not ready" and they wouldn't push him.  Ms. Eileen has been working on Jakes confidence and comfort with the horses and he has been trotting (something he was afraid of) and she had Jakes CANTERING this weekend!  He didn't realize it but he was!  Jakes even JUMPED this weekend!!!  And he went back begging to do it again.  Ms. Eileen has been a godsend for my Jakes. 

Jakes on Milkshake with Ms. Eileen instructing him
During Jakes lesson, Ms. Eileen told him he was off his diagonal.  He said, "I know, give me a second" and he fixed it without Ms. Eileen having to tell him how!  She was impressed by my Jakes.  I am impressed with my Jakes. ( I have NO clue what the diagonal is but as long as Jakes does, that's all I need to know) 

Here is the video Ms. Jill took when Jakes went over the jump. Sorry its so small. But I am still proud of the progress my Jakes has made!

At the end of the day, everyone gathers under the trees to chat and enjoy the delicious breezes that are ALWAYS at the farm.

The Gathering Tree

I have said time and again, how blessed we are to have found Ms. Jill's farm. There is just so much good being done there. Ms. Jill's mantra is "with God all things are possible."  And she is right. 

God does watch over this little farm and its inhabitants and visitors.
Say a prayer with me that He continues to watch over this little piece of Heaven on Earth.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Hazards of the New Camera

I have been playing with my new camera. Exploring the area, new places and old places.  Changing lenses and practicing with settings and exposure levels. 

Last week, I stopped at a little cemetary off the main road that I've always wanted to explore. 

You can see its in the middle of nowhere and not really cared for. If you look in the background, you'll see nothing but nothing.....

Across the street from the cemetary
A Sod Farm

While I was exploring and taking pictures of some of the more interesting head stones I wasn't paying attention to what I was walking THROUGH. Poison Ivy.  All over my aknles and calves.

Yes, that's calamine lotion on my poison ivy

In addtion to learing about the camera and its settings, I've learned that you have to pay attention to what you are walking through.  Gotta go and scratch!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Bike Riding Tips

I have been riding my bike fairly regularly since spring.  I've gotten on it more this past month than I had been.  I am feeling pretty good!  Neicy and I got together on Sunday and did 12 miles.  It was a great ride!  Not only did she and I have time to gossip and chat, but we pushed ourselves a bit too. 

Love my Bike
I have also been tracking my weight and inches.  The weight coming off isn't as exciting as the inches that I have been loosing and how my clothes are fitting me.  I have lost 3 inches in my waist, 2 inches in my hips and only 1.5 inches in my chest.  I love wearing jeans now because its not a circus act to get them pulled up!

Anyway, I just got back from an awesome ride and wanted to share some tips with you.  Mind you these are what works for me and is not to be considered professional advice!  And they could be REALLY skewed because I'm on an exercise endorphin high!  
  1. Interval training is THE BOMB.  Start out slow and hold that for a while.  When the buzzer sounds, kick it into high gear and hold that for a while. Lather, Rinse And Repeat for however many times you chose.  I did it 7 times tonight and traveled 5.5 miles in 20 minutes.  My top speed was 16.9 mph.
  2. Bon Jovi is KICK A$$ for interval training.  "Wanted Dead or Alive" has the perfect beat for holding at 11.5 mph during the low interval.
  3. Singing is not recommended on the high interval YET.  Singing on the low interval is do-able.
  4. Water is a MUST.  Put lots of ice in but don't worry. By the time you stop, you'll have plenty of water and very little ice.
After I got home and got a little water, I grabbed Jaxon and his leash and went for my cool down ride.  Jaxon did .5 miles in 10 minutes.  His top speed was 7.3.  He's asleep in my lap already.

So, who wants to join me?  I'm always up for a partner and I'll take it easy on the beginners.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Container Salsa

AZ and I kicked around putting in a garden. I even contacted the landlord to make sure he was ok with us turning up a portion of the ground.  But we never got our hands on a tiller in time to get things in the ground.  So, we are compromising and growing the important veggies on the back deck.  I love this deck, so versital for everything!

All the plants.
Tomatoes, peppers and lettuce

We have a pepper! Just a baby but its there!

My herb garden.
Basil, Mint, Parsely, Cilantro and Rosemary

If we had tilled up the garden, we would have planted so many more veggies but that can happen next year.  I hope.  We have two types of tomatoes, two types of peppers, a mix of lettuces and of course the herbs.  I want to add oregano to the herb garden, then we have everything to make spaghetti sauce too!

Come on babies!  Keep growing!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Smooth Swimming WW

More pictures with the new camera.

I love that I was able to get the reflection in the water.  This camera is AWESOME!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Date Night

AZ and I don't get to go out for many "dates".  If we have a chance to get out together, its usually in relation to running a kid or two around or visiting our parents.

So when I scored FREE movie tickets to a premire of "The Heat" starring Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy I immedately told AZ we were GOING!  No kids, no parents, just US.  And its FREE!  And the movie looks FUNNY as all get out!  AZ said yesterday that he's looking forward to going.

UPDATE:  AZ is sick and won't be going with me.  BUMMER! Tryng to talk BFF into going with me.  If not, I'll go by myself!

Check out the trailer:

Monday, June 17, 2013

Daddy's Day

I spoiled my Daddy for Father's Day.  We gave him a gift certificate for a Shave and a HairCut.  And homemade vanilla ice cream, with extra vanilla. 

Which made the doggies very happy too.

Friday, June 14, 2013

What's Going On

We are living life.  And while not all roses and sunshine, its been pretty good.  Money seems to be the biggest problem, which goes for a lot of people, of course.

AZ and I are communicating better about things and sharing more of our lives together.  He has been sober and really making an effort to change how things are.  I'm very proud of the steps he's taken recently and I can't wait to see where his plans take us.

We have plans to go camping over the fourth of July weekend.  Jakes is coming with us.  The Gparents will be in a spot around the corner too.  And of course, our dogs.  The Campground is where we went last year and we really enjoyed it.  They have fireworks on Saturday and they seem to be some of the best in the county!

For Jakes graduation present, he wants to go to Washington DC and see the sights.  They went there for his class trip but didn't get to spend a lot of time around there.  Jakes has ideas of some of the stuff that he wants to see.  AZ hasn't been to Washington since high school and is excited to go as well.  I'm excited that I will get to spend some time with my Guys.

This is life.  And its really not bad and definitely improving.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Playing with the New Camera - WW

Wandering the neigborhoods to try out the new camera has been fun! Now to work on my indoor shots....

Some wave action
Count the grains of sand......

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The Graduation

My Jakes, my little boy who insists on growing up, graduated from 8th grade.  Starting in August, I will be the mother to a High School Freshmen.

The Admission Tickets

Handsome Young Man who just received his certificate

Our proud moment
Even on this happy day, we still butted heads

But we did manage to come together for a lovely pose

The grandparents and I were there to support Jacob and cheer him on.  He was worried that no one would be there to cheer him.  When they called his name, he marched across the stage and the entire class cheered for him.  I was SO happy!  And he was all smiles!

After the ceremony, the gparents went home to pack for a camping trip and Jakes and I went to lunch.  All in all it was a good day!

Friday, June 7, 2013

The Graduate

Its hard to believe that this little baby

One of my favorite pictures of my baby Jakes

Willl be graduating from 8th grade today!

I will share pictures of the graduate next week!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

High Tea

Neicy and I had High Tea one afternoon to celebrate my Birthday.  I've never had High Tea and it was lovely!

We were able to choose our own pot of tea, a type of scone, and three different tea sandwiches.  It might not sound like a lot of food but it IS!  Especially when you have a whole pot of tea!

Our teas and yummy foods.

The place was decorated so cute!  None of the dishes or tea cups matched, which added to the lovely-ness of the experience.

It was a lovely experience and I can't wait to do it again!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

New Camera

I'm having fun playing with my new camera
Lots of lunch hours outside checking settings and zooms.
Results soon......