Friday, August 5, 2011

Free... Friday!


It seems that someone has hijacked my phone to take cute cuddly photos of the newest members of the family.
Hmmmm... I wonder who it could be?

Who Me?

This face has grown up a little with a lot more spice!
However, this is the same spirit I see every day.

We made it out to the barn yesterday afternoon to see our

Sweet Boy


Look at that face,
I know better than to take a photo with the light behind him...
I just couldn't help myself.
He was just looking at me with those big gentle eyes!
He has such a GIANT heart.  
It is just hard to see sometime because of his massive size.
But we see it!
It absolutely blows my mind how someone could ...
I will leave that one alone, 
because I don't KNOW for sure what his story is.
All I know is that this is one incredible horse.
A nicer horse than we should have been able to afford.
He obviously came from a pretty high pedigree and was superbly trained at one point.  
Most likely 3 day evening.
Over Fences, Dressage and Cross-country.

What happened after that is anyone's guess.
My guess is that he lost his rider (accident, college or financial reasons) and then falling into the hands of folks who either didn't have the experience, time, talents or desire to give this horse what he needed.
Only to go from one new owner to the next repeatedly only to end up at a horse auction and finally the horse trader ... where we found him.
Skin and bones and not trusting of anyone.
Gas is just to so dang expensive!  
We can't drive out to the barn every day like we would like to.  But we go as often as we can and never less than twice a week.  Mary will sometimes catch a ride out with other girls though.
It is an hour drive back and forth to the barn.
We have to keep him out on the mainland (Grandy, NC).  We probably could get away with keeping him here at the house...
but he wouldn't be happy, there is just not enough room.
This boy here is a HUGE motivation to get ourselves to the country.
The only thing that I will truly miss is having a great trainer.


Mary has taken a big interest in dressage.
And it seems that Phoenix is VERY familiar with the moves and even knew one of the patterns she was practicing yesterday.
Surprising us all...
 Phoenix took off into a canter exactly where our imaginary marker was.
Mary wasn't planning to do the canter at that time...
it was too hot and Mary didn't feel ready for it yet.

But, Phoenix was ready to show her what he could do...
and please her.
I don't see the Olympics in our future ...
though anything is possible.
We might just have to bring Glenda with us where ever we end up.
I guess we will be looking for a place with a second house or apartment in the barn.
I have seen a few already out there.

Ya'll keep your eyes peeled for that place for us to call 

I got these a while back and I am sure I blogged about it when they came in
but I don't think I actually posted any pictues of the actual fabrics.
here they are.

My Test Swatchs:

A Green Gourd Creation

This one...
I did a little more tweaking on the size of the print.  The print that is for sale on 
Spoonflower is somewhat different.

This fabric has special significance to me...
it is my "logo".
I sketched this on a scrap piece of paper several years ago.
With no intention of ever using it for anything.
Kinda doodling you might say.

Over the years it has evolved...
Now, here it is on a piece of fabric.

The next two are even more senimental.
They are a collaboration of my daughter and myself.

She had a project to do in 4th grade Social Studies.
Mary was asked to do a report on the 
State Wildflower

Carolina Lily

This is a rendering that we both worked on together.
I sketched out a flower, and then she colored in the details with colored pencil.
She even gave me "credits" on the final drawing.
The same is true with the next picture.
She really worked hard on the shading...

Lily Project

You can check out the fabric designs at
 and buy them to!

The final project that Mary turn in had to be done as a PowerPoint presentation.
I know I was intimidated.
This was the year Mary got the
"Swine Flu"
She missed a lot of school
(which is where they were doing the PowerPoint format)
It took me a little while but I finally found a "free" version of PowerPoint, figured out how to use it and we were able to finish it up here at home.

Another part of this project was to do a model of their state symbol.
This is what she and her Dad came up with.


In the Powerpoint presentation there was a slide show ...
showing the entire process of their joint effort in making the sculpture.

Mary drew all the pieces out on the flat metal with soap stone...
Bill cut them out for her, with Mary's supervision of course.

Bill made one of the blossoms and Mary made the other one by herself.
they worked hard on this for several days.
Here are a few pictures from the slideshow :

Coming Together

We will have to come up with another project like this to do for 
get Dad a little more hands on in the lesson department.
She really enjoyed doing this with her Dad.


Check out what came in the mail yesterday!

Jennifer sent me a complimentary set of tags for
Green Gourd Creations
Hats, Scarfs, Purses, Baby Quilts, Doll Cloths or what ever fiber item that comes from my hand.

Just for featuring her shop on my blog and not asking for anything in return.

Thank you Jennifer!
You really didn't have to do that.
I so appreciate it!

Ya'll check out her shop

Look what else came in the mail yesterday!

California Achievement Test

I got Mary's Test Prep and CAT.
The mandatory standardized achievment test that is required once a year for Homeschoolers in the state of North Carolina.

I was not worried about this test originally, since there is no Pass or Fail in North Carolina.
I hold a higher standard than the state does.

However, with the whole moving thing...

I am a little concerned about her score now.
Originally, I had planed on the first test simply being a point of reference.
Making up for gaps in the following year.
Not knowing where we will be in a few months does change things a little.
The standards for other states vary, I am not familiar with Virginia's.

I am pretty confident that no matter where we end up we should have no problem 
even if we decide to put her back in public school.

Thank You

The Complete Anne of Green Gables Boxed Set (Anne of Green Gables, Anne of Avonlea, Anne of the Island, Anne of Windy Poplars, Anne's House of Dreams, ... Rainbow Valley, Rilla of Ingleside)

We have had a major break through.
she is excited about reading.  She asked if she could read ahead in her book.  Without stopping to do the study questions.  She asked if she could try and finish it that day.
She had just started it the day before.
And Guess what...
she did!
She LOVED the book.
Go figure.
I wonder if it had anything to do with the fact that the character was someone she could relate to?
Hmmmm... I wonder?

For those of you who have read the book and know my daughter you know the answer to that question.

She finished up the study question for Anne of Green Gables yesterday with great enthusiasm.

Her reading and comprehension have improved so much this year.
I am Blow away!

Thank you to EVERYONE 
who supported us through this rather frightening journey!

And to all the naysayers...

Bless you anyway!

Common Thread

Carolina Harmony
She has been bitten.
She started reading this book within the hour after finishing 
Anne of Green Gables.
I love it!
If you have not read this one... 
you should.
It shares a common air as Anne of Green Gables
however, it is set in a little more modern era.
Well early 1970's... 
and takes place in the mountains of North Carolina.
The main character is bit more of a spitfire than Ann but shares many of her delightful qualities.

So far, Mary says she really likes the book.
She says that she can really identify with the main character...
she feels she is more "like" Carolina.

Out Loud

The Horse Whisperer

We are reading this book aloud now.  
The first chapter was a doozie to get through.  It is one thing reading the emotions quietly but it is quite another thing to read them aloud.
We were both bawling our eyes out.
We must have talked for an hour after the end of chapter one.
I promised Mary that the rest of the book wouldn't be quite as difficult to read.
She had been excited that we were going to watch the movie after reading the book, but she says now that she is not so sure she wants to see it.
She couldn't bear going through the accident again.
We'll see, I told her that the movie is actually not as graphically detailed as the book.
It is still very sad though.

She has a day off from school today.
She is off with a friend
and very excited about all their plans.
The most exciting of all is ...
Absolutely NOT 
something I excell in...
that would be more of my siblings department, never mine. 
I am really happy for Mary
that she is skating with some folks who actually know what they are doing and can give her some pointers.
Plus, it is always more fun to have someone to skate with.

After a long weekend I hope she will be ready to start her CAT prep come Monday.

Happy Friday!
I hope everyone has a safe and blessed weekend.


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