Archive for the ‘Rambling’ Category

Looking back on 2016…

2017

Happy New Year! I have to admit that I’m having a hard time looking back on this year. 2016 wasn’t the “Worst Year Ever” like so many internet memes going around… at least not for me personally. It was more of “just another year” and a rather static and lonely one at that, which bothers me now that I think of it.

However, I do like the start of a new year as it’s like an opportunity to start fresh, to dust off old goals (and forgotten resolutions?) and try again, hopefully with a more positive look on whatever the future will bring.

I did meet some personal goals this year, like saving enough for my first car and taking up music lessons again.

2/366 - Grey

I also got to visit Hawaii, which was wonderful and amazing and sad all at the same time.

Beach on Oahu

Kualoa Ranch

And I spent a day at Rebecca Farm, taking a bazillion pictures of the competitors and their horses.

Show Jumping - Open Novice

Show Jumping - Open Novice

But aside from that, this year has mostly been about work and hobby stuff, which meant loads and loads of sewing!
I am grateful for both though. I was kept very busy for most of the year with Etsy orders. I did manage to complete some personal projects, like saddlepads,

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blankets,

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a bunch of miniatures,

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and a new saddle.

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The herd grew by ten horses, several of which were very sweet gifts.

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One of my hobby goals for last year was to get my Woodbridge painted, and I did, hooray!

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My others were to thin the herd, (haha like that happened..) finish some projects I had in the works and continue blogging every week. I didn’t manage to finish my old projects and chose instead to start a lot of new ones, which is something I need to tackle as I hate having in-progress stuff everywhere, taking up space.

But I think I did ok with blogging?

I have been thinking a bit about my 2017 hobby goals, and here’s what I’ve come up with so far.

  • Concentrate more on tack/prop/miniature making. Last year I managed to hoard a lot of supplies and really need to put them to use before getting any more.
  • Limit my spending on said supplies until I use up what I’ve got
  • I’ve said I’m out of room for months now and am finally at the point where I can no longer squeeze any new horses on the bookshelf. So another goal is to strictly limit the number of new herd members this year.
  • Keep up with the weekly-ish blogging
  • Attempt to get better with time management. I really suck at this so it will definitely be a challenge!
  • Attempt to NOT procrastinate bookkeeping because it’s a huge pain to deal with when I do.

I am planning on continuing with new Etsy pieces as I complete them. My shop is open again after a much needed break, and I’ve added a listing for made-to-order English saddle pads, much like the western ones I already have available.

Here’s hoping for a good 2017!

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Oahu, Hawaii Trip

I’ve spent the last couple of weeks on the island of Oahu, which is part of the Hawaiian islands. Even though I’ve been home for a few days now, I’m still rather jet-lagged. I’m already missing the islands though… I lived on Maui when I was with YWAM for a short period of time, so going again brought back all sorts of memories. There is a vast difference between the two islands though, and this time around I did more touristy stuff.

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The main reason for going, however, was for my Grandpa’s inurnment service at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, also known as the Punchbowl Cemetery. My Grandpa was in the Navy and was a Vietnam veteran. He and my Grandma lived on the island for several years.

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It was definitely a bittersweet and emotional trip for everyone involved, but it was good too, and I am really grateful I was able to go.

I won’t spam you all with too many pictures, but here are some highlights. More can be found on my Flickr album if you’re interested…

Here’s a view of Honolulu from the lookout at Punchbowl. Diamond Head Monument is in the background… my parents and I climbed to the top of it later on.

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We spent a day over at Pearl Harbor, which was really interesting but also kind of depressing (at least for me) at the same time. It’s one thing to read about historic events and another to be on the ground where it actually occurred, if that makes any sense at all.

The ship on the left is the Battleship Missouri, and the white building on the right is the Arizona Memorial. The memorial was built above the U.S.S. Arizona, which was bombed in the attack on Pearl Harbor. The bombing is what brought the US into WWII, and on the Missouri is where it officially ended, so it’s interesting to have both there, facing each other.

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Being inside the memorial was a rather sobering experince… even after 75 years the ship (which is literally a tomb for all who perished) is still leaking oil, which can be seen on the surface of the water.

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On a more cheerful note, we also went to the Dole Plantation. It’s kind of a big tourist trap BUT there’s a lovely garden full of all sorts of pretty and strange tropical plants, and Pineapple flavored/scented/printed/patterned everything. And Dole Whip!

Pineapple field

Pineapple field

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We did escape the city to see other parts of the island too:

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And my sister and I went horseback riding in Jurassic Park: (but that’s a separate post for another day!)

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We also did other things that I have no photo evidence of, like a traditional Luau and a few museums. I also managed to bring home some Hawaiian print fabric – I swear I can’t escape this addiction even while in the center of the Pacific.

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It is good to be home though. 🙂

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Sorry for the lack of posts here… I’m stuck in the middle of this weird hobby burnout. In January, I feel like I started full speed ahead, then immediately hit a wall. I’ve been working on a lot of Etsy orders but aside from that, haven’t felt motivated or inspired to get anything else done… which is frustrating because there are things I’d really like to get done.

I want to get back into blogging but it’s been tough to get into that again too. Recently Copperfox posted a 10 Day Challenge on their blog, and in an attempt to get back into the swing of things, I’m going to give it a go. (scattered over the next few weeks/months or so? Cause ten days in a row is too much for me right now)

So, Day 1: Inspiration Day.

“An easy start to our challenge! Find something that inspires you. It could be a picture of an unusual colour of horse that you would like to turn into a model, a how-to tutorial video or a piece in your favourite magazine about collecting things that you love. Or it could be a song, film, piece of poetry- whatever it is, find something that gets your creativity going!”

My inspiration comes from a mix of things. Real horses, obviously, a life-long fascination/love for miniatures, and my younger self’s desire to own a horse of my own.

I’ve always liked horses, but the “horse crazy” didn’t quite hit until I was in my early teens and taking weekly riding lessons. It was all very basic, casual and laid back, but I loved it. I was obsessed with anything horse related, whether it was books, movies, music, and eventually Breyers.

I *think* this was one of the last rides before moving to MT

I *think* this was one of the last rides before moving to MT

Owning a real horse wasn’t possible so the models became the next best thing. I had been making miniatures of sorts for years, so I was really drawn to making horse-related miniatures, whether that was tack, props or buildings. I think I still have the plans for a huge stablemate-sized ranch, loosely based off of the one I rode at. It had stalls, pastures, a tack room, arenas, wash racks… the works.

Start of the madness collection:


First halter and “arab” halter:

FirstAttempts

First western saddle… heyyy there’s the tack trunk in the back!

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It’s been at least 13 years but the “horse crazy” phase is still going strong… maybe not quite as strong as it was at one point, but strong enough. I am still unable to keep a real horse, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. I guess, in a way, models are still the next best thing.

My account on Pinterest is stuffed full of things that inspire me… real horses, tack, minis, etc.

Aside from that, I get a lot of inspiration from the people in this hobby. I have since I discovered it and will continue to do so as long as I’m involved with it. The level of talent and creativity in the hobby is awesome, and it’s always encouraging to know that there are people like me out there… who get excited over tiny stuff and new colors on plastic model horses. XD

There are too many individuals for me to list as inspiration here, so here are the first few who come to mind.

Juliane Gartska of Luckenbach Ranch – her photos have fooled me multiple times, as many of them look like full sized horses instead of models.

European hobbyists in general… some of the photos of models and miniature scenes I’ve seen are incredible and extremely realistic. It’s a side of the hobby that I rarely see among hobbyists in the USA, but I LOVE it. I have a love of haired models as well and am sad that it’s not very popular nowadays. If I ever get into customizing I think all my horses will be haired… 😛

CharArt – Char’s work is amazing. Whenever she updates with new tack photos I feel inspired to start working on my own pieces again.

Liz Shaw of Arabian Acres (now Tick-Tock Studio) was a HUGE inspiration for me and my interest in Arabian tack. I’m not sure what she’s up to nowadays, but I remember spending so much time on her old website, admiring her beautiful horses and Arabian costumes.

Last Alliance Studios – one of my very favorite hobby blogs, and always a huge inspiration! I love the amount of detail in all of her miniatures and dioramas. Plus, Julips are fantastic. 😀

Jennifer Buxton of Braymere Custom Saddlery – Jennifer’s work and blog have been a source of inspiration for several years now. Her tack tips and tutorials are a huge help and her photography is always a treat.

Outside of the hobby, there are several miniature artists that I take inspiration from as well. Here are a few of them:

Sugar Charm Shop – she makes 1/12 scale food, miniatures, animals and dolls. (and makes it look super easy!)

Mimine Mini – her miniatures are incredibly detailed and often work exactly like the real thing. She’s from Korea, so even though I don’t understand what’s being said in her videos, they’re still easy enough to follow along.

1 inch Minis – While I haven’t been following her for very long, I do admire the way she shares step-by-step photos of the creation of her miniatures.

Writing all this out has helped somewhat, so I’m off to finish some bell boot orders and hopefully get some miniature Breyer boxes completed as well… the digital files are so close to being done!

MiniBreyerBox

Until then…

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