Friday, May 29, 2015

Winsdown Iron Ore... or as we called him Ivan

It is with great sadness that I tell you about a very special horse who is no longer with us. His registered name was Winsdown Iron Ore. Breed at Winsdown Farms by Louise Gilliland. We called him Ivan, although he has had many barn names starting with Ugly Spud! Although he came into this world as an ugly duckling, as you can see, he matured into a swan. He stood a giant 17 hh and he knew how big he was. Although he did not have a mean bone in his body, he could be as stubborn as a mule but he slowly mellowed out to become one of my life changing horses. Those barn names went from Ivan the Terrible, Ivan - Hooooo, Big Red and then to Baby Huey.
As I overcame my fear of Ivan, my confidence soared and my riding skills improved with the help of trainer Kelli Lowery. When we were at our best, everyone would stop at Kelli's to watch Ivan. He could trot WAY above level, and loved to show off at the barn, but not always at horse shows!..LOL
At the end of a show, I noticed that Ivan was favoring one of his front feet and the vet diagnosed founder. After a year long treatment with special shoes and limited turn out (Ivan HATED that), we got him sound again. I continued to ride him, but no longer took him to shows.
Ivan was a bit of a pasture bully too and the only horse I had who could put him in his place was an old nag mare named Lacy I adopted from a woman who had cancer.. she would and could put Ivan in his place and make him behave!
Many years ago, I came on rough times and made one of the hardest decisions in my life - to give Ivan away along with his pal Lacy. Many people wanted Ivan - but few were willing to take his best friend. One very special person rose to the top of the list though. Mona Lucas I will never be able to repay you for all you did for Ivan the last part of his life. I know you and your family dearly loved him as did I.
The picture is of Janie L. Hamilton riding him as I believe a 3 year old (maybe 4) and I saw the video.... HE SHOULD HAVE WON THAT CLASS HANDS DOWN!!!
Thank you God for giving me Ivan and thank you for all the wonderful people in is life who loved him as dearly as I.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

A Hard Day

I had to say good-bye to one of my best friends yesterday.  No - she did not pass away, she only moved to Vermont.  I had a much harder time with it than I thought I would because what had happened in the last 12 years was that not only had she become my neighbor and friend, but my help-mate of sorts.  She was the person I could call at any hour for any reason.  She was the person whom I trusted with my animals if I was away.  She was the person who would drop everything to help me if I needed her and vice versa.

Over the last week, I have watched as transport vans have left her farm, first with her small animals - cats and dogs, and then the caravan leaving with all of her furniture.  Walking into her shell of a house nearly broke me and yesterday the final van went down the drive with her 7 horses and then she drove out of Texas for what may be the last time.

It is harder to be left than it is to be the one going on to something new, but she is entering a new and exciting chapter in her life.  I cried like a baby and nothing or nobody could have stopped the tears.  They continued for hours after she left and still well up as I am writing this.

I decided to take a walk down the road to where we are building our house.  I do a lot of praying while I walk and a lot more inside the house.  I actually was not planning on going inside the house, but to check on my new neighbors construction further down the road.  As I turned to walk back, I could see the side of our house where the garages are and looking up, I noticed the french doors were open going out to the Juliette balcony.  This is not uncommon since the door hardware is not on yet and they are only held shut by a plastic piece that goes into the grooves set for the deadbolt.  A strong enough wind can open them.

I walked through the front door and I started to sob.  So many tears rolled down my cheeks, I was leaving a trail into the room that will one day be our bedroom.  I love the feel of that room and was looking for some comfort.  I tried to imagine what it will look like completed, but my sorrow took over and I just continued to cry.

"Why God?"  I asked Him.  "Why did my friend have to move so far away?"

Living on a farm, all of my neighbors are some distance away, so to find such a friend within a short distance was truly a gift!

I picked myself up remembering to go upstairs to shut the french doors.  My posture was slumped and my heart physically hurt.  I walked up the stairs and into the bedroom only to gasp as the site in front of me.  The doors were not only shut - but securely locked...and I know that I know God showed me something right at that very moment.  He showed me that my friend did not know the Lord when we met and through our friendship, she not only came to know Him now, but had such a personal relationship, that she would never turn back. He revealed to me why he brought her into my life, instead of answering my question of why she had to leave.

Of coarse I cried even harder and thanked Him for his great mercy and love.  I know there is a purpose in all of this and even though I still have a great hole in my heart, I will be on the lookout for next chapter in my life.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Trim Finish

Another thing that was finished was the trim on the Juliette Balcony.  I know I will be thrilled when the house is painted white with the black shutters... but several projects need to be done prior to that!

If you look really hard, you can see that I painted the carport door black!


Monday, March 30, 2015

Opps!

Super excited to hear the sounds of saws and nail guns again today down at the house!!!  One of the things they were doing was installing the door frames for 5 pocket doors we have!!!  This one goes from the mud room into the mud bathroom!
This one goes from the butlers pantry into the exercise room...

..and OPPS... this is suppose to be a closet on the left, but since the door frame is backwards, they have closed in the closet and we now have a door from the laundry room into the mud room...ummm No -  this has to be fixed.. LOL!

Sigh... are we having fun yet?... well actually YES - I am loving this .. mistakes and all!!  Thank You Lord for our new house!!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Leak No More!!!

So happy to say that after this last round of storms, it seems that our balcony leak has been fixed!!!  Thank you Lord!!!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

So Sad..


This is the only picture I could find of our Building Consultant - Larry Haynes.  He was amazing and I told everyone that he was so well suited for his job...no matter how upset I was over anything, he had a way of calming me down and making sure I knew how to take care of the situation.  He kept our project on track so that we never missed an inspection and helped us get the best contractors.

Larry passed away from a heart attack a few days ago..and my heart is aching for his family..and for the loss of a friend.