August Update

I’ve really only been doing a couple things this month. Playing with my camera, packing salt, and working on my book. I’ve pretty much been living and breathing photography and writing this summer. If I’m not outside working with or riding a horse, then I’m either taking pictures, editing pictures, writing my book, or editing my book. I overheard my dad telling a friend of his that I’ve been living breathing eating and sleeping writing and photography this summer and that’s pretty true actually. If I’m not working on my book then I’m reading about photography. I’m actually going to be taking some classes from New York Institute of Photography here pretty soon and I’m really excited about it!
God has really been blessing me this summer by making things work out so that I can spend so much time doing two things that I really love and enjoy. If I keep going at this rate, then the first draft of my book should be done by this Christmas!

I had a lot of fun with this picture. The violin is 218 years old and was given to me by my grandmother who started me on violin. It has the most beautiful sound and I hardly ever actually have to tune it. I need to send it in for repairs because there is a crack that has been repaired before that needs to be inspected, and one of the seems has separated just a tiny little bit. There’s a shop in Minneapolis that my grandma always sent it to, but I need to find a violin shop near me that can pack it for me unless I can make the trip all the way there. I’m scared to death to mail it unless a professional does it for me since they ship them a special way.

But anyway, I took the picture by holding up a dress of mine with a lacy skirt in front of a window. It was a minor feat of acrobatics to get the dress and camera both at the right angle and my arms were sore when I got done, but it was so worth it.

I’m still working on shooting in low light situations, but this one turned out pretty good considering I only had a couple minutes to spare to take this one.

I usually do my best thinking just sitting on or next to my horse in the evening looking out over our hills.

Lady never fails to make me laugh with her goofiness.

Sassy, the filly my dad is working with decided to tag along with Sweetheart, Moon and I when we packed salt out to one of the Solar tanks. Moon has got to be the most bomb proof horse when it comes to plastic bags on her back now.

I divide 100 pounds of loose salt into four bundles with two tied on the front of the pack saddle and two on the back. The front two bundles are just a little lighter to make it a little more comfortable for her. I just use old feed sacks doubled up to hold the salt since I don’t have any panniers yet. Then I run a peice of twine through the center ring on the pack saddle and around the loop where each bag hooks onto the saddle and pull it tight so the bags can’t bounce and hit her ribs at a trot or lope. Once I’ve emptied the bags of salt, I just tie them all into a bundle and loosely tie it to the pack saddle where it can bounce all over her back and haunches. She didn’t even bat an eye the first time I did it. Sometimes I tie it a little tighter, but since she doesn’t care I don’t usually bother.

Packing salt out in the hills where they have to walk in loose sand is a really good way to desensitize a young horse and help them build muscle while gradually getting them used to having weight on their back. This time of year, the sand in our pastures on the trails is just like walking on a beach with really deep loose sand. Your horse has to work a lot harder for every single step they take. It will never fail to give you a horse with good endurance.

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