Friday, December 31, 2021

Parting shots

This has been a hard year. Back in July, I dropped my best camera, and it's been on a slow, downward slide ever since. Earlier this month, it quit altogether. It's not worth fixing, and a new camera is not in the budget, so I've been relying on my cell phone and an even older DSLR. Needless to say, this year's "best photo" post is a little lackluster. Next year I'll try to do better.

Seven reasons why 2021 was better than 2020

I thought this was a universally accepted truth, so I was surprised to learn that a lot of people think 2021 has been worse.
On the one hand, I get it. This year has been a roller coaster with amazing, soaring highs followed by terrible, crashing lows. It's been hard and stressful and I wouldn't want to live through it again.
Still, it hasn't been as bad as 2020. Here are seven reasons why I will remember this year fondly.
1. Vaccines. Covid is still dominating headlines and filling hospitals, but at least there's something we can do to protect ourselves now. Our good, safe, effective vaccines have been an absolute game changer. Never have I been so happy to roll up my sleeve.
2. A return to travel. I love traveling. It's one of my absolute favorite things, so as soon as we were vaccinated, Seth and I hit the road.
We drove out to California to visit my Mom, who I did not seen at all in 2020. 
In September, I went on another roadtrip, this time with my friend, Mary Jo.
Our destination was Austin, Texas, where we stayed with my friend, Lauren. We also visited my parents in law in Flower Mound and my friend, Andrea, in Amarillo.
3. Spending time with friends. Last year was lonely. Thanks again to vaccines, this year was much less so. In addition to seeing friends in California and Texas, I was able to spend time with several local friends. I attended one live show and hosted two great holiday gatherings. 
Also, my best friend, Carol, moved back to the United States. She's living in Mississippi - which is still too far away - but I did get to see her twice this year.
4. Rejoining the work force. Yet another vaccine benefit! After twenty years, I back in the (real horse) tack business, and loving (almost) every minute.
5. Monetizing my blog. This blog has been a labor of love for more than a dozen years. Now it's actually earning its keep. Thank you to everyone who has bought me a coffee, but especially those who have a monthly subscription. Your support means the world to me.
5. Piper. After years of talking about it, Seth and I finally bit the bullet and adopted a third dog.
Piper has been an absolute delight. She is cute, funny and oh, so sassy.
We could not have asked for a better Adventure Dog.
7. Olive. 
There aren't enough words to describe what it's been like to finally get the pony I've wanted my entire life. We are still at the very beginning of our partnership, but I wake up every morning excited, happy and eager to get to the barn.
I don't know what's in store for us in 2022. I suspect it will be another complicated year, with more pandemic, natural disasters and general unrest. Still, I am optimistic. 2020 was the worst year ever. 2021 was better, and I think 2022 will continue that trend.

Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 30, 2021

Confessions of a former tackmaker

I made a halter on Monday. It took me twice as long as it should have, and I wasn't wholly pleased with the results. Despite the best efforts of my optometrist and a whole host of magnifiers, I just don't have the eyes for this anymore.

I've started referring to myself as a "casual tackmaker," but truthfully, "former tackmaker" is probably a more accurate description. Mostly, I am okay with this. I had a good run. I made lots of things, some of which were actually pretty good. There are plenty of other things for me to do.

And yet...

My phone is filled with detail shots like these. 
Maybe I'm not quite as former as I think.