Friday, December 31, 2021

Christmas Pony

     When I bought the Collector’s Club Christmas Morning Surprise horse I mostly just wanted to see which I would get. I do love blind bag and gambler’s choice models. I get a big kick out of those. I did actually really like the blue and the purple ones, though I still had my doubts about keeping them. I have a supreme lack of space here. But I would likely have paused to consider if I got one of the colors I liked.
     That is not my luck, lol. I got green, which is one of the colors I definitely didn’t want. I don’t like gold. I would have been insanely thrilled with coal, though getting an ultra rare version of anything is not usually something that happens to me. 
      I could have traded, and I might have, but then my electric bill arrived. I am on the budget plan, because I like to know what my bills are going to be each month, and December’s bill was more than twice what it normally is! And the next budget bill is expected to be roughly $80 a month more than I have been paying. It was time to switch electric suppliers again. And it is time to sell things.
     My green Spice Drop was sold on eBay and sooner or later I will get more things listed for sale as well. This is not really the best time for sales, but I’m in a purging mood so it might just happen anyway.

Thursday, December 30, 2021

2021 Doll Year Review

     2021 has felt like the year I let so many things go. I stopped pushing myself to work so hard, stopped insisting to myself that I have to ship things the second they are paid for (ex. same day or next day), and I felt like I worked at a much slower pace. Translation: I felt like I didn't get a lot done. School has been weird for the entire year. Things have not gotten easier since I have been teaching, and it really does seem I am slacking on doll work. But I did make things, I have photo evidence. 
      I made a variety of specialty dolls.
Western pleasure and hunt seat dolls. 
Casual dolls in both English and Western clothing.
Saddle seat dolls. 
fancy hats driving dolls
and definitely hoodie dolls. 
In the end I made:
1 driving doll
2 youth dolls
2 dressage dolls
3 saddle seat dolls
7 casual English dolls
8 cowboys
12 casual western dolls
15 hunt seat dolls
16 specialty dolls
17 western pleasure dolls
27 hoodie dolls 
for a total of 110 dolls in 2021. 

      I seem to average about 100-150 dolls a year, so I really am right on target this year. Plus I made a large amount of miniature items. Maybe next year I will learn to be comfortable with the more relaxed work attitude. Maybe I will learn to trust that I am still getting the things done. I might still finish up several dolls I have in the works today (I am close!) but for now I can say I have finished a total of 1571 since I started in 2006. That's a lot of dolls. I can't wait to see what 2022 brings. 

Wednesday, December 29, 2021

I Have Regrets

     Remember how the other day I said I have issues? I am not an OF collector but I keep joining Breyer clubs and I keep buying blind bag and blind bag type items. I LIKE the chase. I LIKE seeing what I get. That is a really fun part for me. But now I have a whole bunch of stuff here that I don't need, have no space for, and wonder why I bought it. 
     So for the CC appreciation sale I had to buy $150 of stuff to get my "free" glossy. I sold the glossy, but now I have all these other things I bought, that I don't need. What is wrong with me? The other day I finally pulled out the pony from the set with the blanket and doll, and the pony is really lovely!
     I don't have OF collector's eyes, but I can see nice shading when it is present, which it is on this model. Is she flawless? Doubtful. Nothing in reality is flawless. But she is a really excellent piece. I think. I sort of bought her for a friend who sort of wants a pony on this mold. And then I remembered I already got her a holiday gift and really need to get my spending under control and I can't just buy people presents all the time. Though I really do like giving gifts. Anyway, this pony is looking for a new home. I have not listed her anywhere because that is effort I haven't managed yet. 
     I also got myself the winter decorator Baltazar. Now this horse is amazing! I love clearware, I love pink and blue together (though I am really not a fan of gold) but I have nowhere to put this horse! He does remind me strongly of She-Ra's horse that I had when I was little. I had the clear pink crystal horse. I hated it because it was not real horse colored. I ended up painting it (mane, tail and all) with enamel paint. It looked horrendous. But it was horse colored. Not sure why all of a sudden I am drawn to decorators. Anyway, this poor horse also has nowhere for me to put it, and will also be for sale. 
    Then there is this horse. I love this mold, love this horse, and had a vague idea to get it to customize or to use as a traditional scale pony. Wait... you already have TWO horses you are customizing in the closet and have not worked on either in months! AND you already have plenty of ponies and pony sized things. So yeah, I also don't need this horse and will be putting her up for sale sooner or later. Even the Breyer tote bag I bought, which I have been eyeballing for months, is a disappointment. It's kind of a weird shape, and stiff... and I don't like it. But it's a bag so that one I will likely keep. 
     I have also been thinking of other horses I am hanging onto. Like my Breyerfest Dani. I adore that horse, but I already have a horse on that mold that I show the crap out of (and have a space for). So Dani has been in her box since I got her. I have Hal, who I mentioned the other day, who I was keeping because he was the last horse my friend Pat traded me. BUT Pat also trade me Ichabad Crane (who I show the crap out of) so do I really NEED to keep Hal? Likely not, he will also tentatively be for sale. There may also be others, I am not even sure what I have yet. 
     Anyway, my point in all of this is I have done a lot of impulse buying over the last 6 months or so and now I have regrets. I have too many horses that are in boxes or totes, and it is unlikely I will magically get space to display them any time soon. It's time to let them go. Time to purge (again) and be brutal about it. Micros and minis, nothing is safe!

Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Casual Doll

      I have been back to super struggling lately. I am on vacation, which is amazing, and I don't want to go back to school. This happens every weekend, long weekend, and vacation. As soon as I go back I always get right into the swing of things and have no problem being at school. I am sure this time will be no different. Except when I go back I basically have to see how I can cram a few more very important lessons into a very short amount of time, and then I have to start figuring out midterms. Super. I am sure that the next 6 weeks will fly by. After that I am pretty sure it is February vacation. I can do this. 
     Part of my issue, I am sure, is the seasons changed. Again. Every time they change I get super unmotivated for a couple of weeks. So right now I am struggling, but I have very slowly gotten some stuff done. So far I have done almost no school work at home during this break. I did spend maybe 15-20 minutes on Teachers pay Teachers one night. But it was just a tiny bit of time. Anyway, I finished up this casual doll that I think is the last ride along doll from my Black Friday sale. I have one other package that I am pretty sure I am just canceling that order and banning the person from future sales. They took a week and a half or 2 weeks to send me an email for invoicing (with a tag on the claimed item) and then I have sent 2 reminders... and it's been a month. That is really not fair to me. And really not fair to anyone else who may have wanted the claimed items. I don't have a lot of rules for my sales, but please don't claim if you don't intend to purchase is a big one. 
    So I have a bunch of dolls I need to try to get to and, so far, I am not motivated to work on them. I am in that weird time where I can see not going back to school (though it won't happen, I always go back) and I also don't want to work on dolls. Then I remind myself that I do need money... it's not helping me want to work, lol! I actually just want to purge belongings and read. Is that too much to ask?


Monday, December 27, 2021

Learning New Things

     I have wanted to learn a new language for a long time. It's a really good skill to have. But even if I can remember the words, if my accent is off (which it almost definitely is) I don't want to say anything. It's a rough position to be in. I have also wanted to learn American Sign Language for a long time. And since there is no spoken accent in ASL, that might be a language I can handle. Maybe. You do need to incorporate facial expression and posture (of course!) but if I could just learn the basic signs, maybe then I could work on the "accent". It's a possibility. 
     For Christmas my parents gave Travis this set of cards, which are supposed to help you learn some basic things in ASL. As soon as I saw it I asked if it was actually for me. It might end up that way. Travis and I did go through a lot of it together, and both of us learned some signs, but that may be the extent of his interest. Though he did teach himself the alphabet in sign language in preschool. From a poster in the classroom. Maybe we can grab a few cards a night and see about just learning a few signs at a time. That might be a better way anyway. 
     So it looks like I have something new to do in all of my "free time:, lol. But it should be fun. And if nothing else, Ethan and I can sign funny things at each other! He already knows a chunk of ASL. 

Sunday, December 26, 2021

I Have Issues

     I really am not an OF collector. I know a lot of people really don't believe that, especially with the number of OF horses I seem to buy and Breyer clubs I belong to, but I really am not. I have a handful of horses and I currently have a whole bunch of things I want to rehome. It's crazy. But I actually want to purge all sorts of things at the moment. I really want to own less stuff. Which is a hard thing when you are a collector. I do collect things, even though I don't collect OF horses. 
     Anyway, every year Breyer does a Christmas Morning Surprise for collector's club members. They are, as far as I know, always decorators, one mold, different colors, and a super rare model. The super rare one MIGHT be a new thing from last year. I am not an OF collector so I really have not been paying any attention. So Christmas morning I was screwing around on the computer and figured I would check it out and see what Breyer was offering this year. Turns out it was Spice Drop, who comes in 4 different colors, red with gold, green with gold, blue with silver, and purple with silver. If you are on the naughty list, Santa might send you one of the super rare "coal" models. Not gonna lie, I actually really like both the blue and the purple version of this horse. If I had space, and got one of those, I would very likely keep it. They are very fun! I don't particularly like the other 2 at all. I am not a gold person. 
      So what does this have to do with anything? Well, I happened to be online at 11:01, and I noticed the time. I happened to like 2 of the models, and I think Croi looks good as a decorator (or a mini, she definitely is a great mini!). I also am drawn to blind bags. Why??? I pretty much never keep what is inside, but I love gamblers choice and blind bag models. Part of why I bought things from the CC appreciation sale was to get the "free" glossy model. Just to see what I would get. I has no plan to keep any of them, I just wanted to see what I would get, lol! So I sold the glossy, at "cost" (cost of the models I had to buy to get the "free" glossy) and now have a bunch of stuff I don't really need that I may also have to rehome. I have bought many blind bag models, including a full case, to see if I could get the rare chase pieces. I just wanted to see if I could do it. Maybe it's like buying a lottery scratch ticket. It's entirely possible you will just lose your money, but you might win a bunch (before my friends called a gambling hotline for me, I almost never buy scratch tickets). I like the chase and the surprise. THAT is the part I want in these things. 

     I did buy a Spice Drop. Apparently they sold out in 12 minutes or something like that. I didn't feel frantic buying one, I didn't care if I missed out, but I DO want to see what I will get. If I get a blue or a purple I MIGHT keep it, but likely not, I have no room for any models. Are people mad at people like me? People who buy things with no intention of keeping them? Yes, they are totally mad at people like me. Even if I sell it at cost (which, if I can profit on a thing, I might, depends on how badly I want it gone) I am evil to some people because I bought a thing I didn't want and took the chance from someone else. But everyone had the same chance. I missed out on the little Clydesdales because I forgot they were going on sale and I was at work. It happens. I know it's not the same, because I am not an OF collector who is hoping to add a special new piece to my collection. I just want to get the thing to see which version I get. That is the fun part for me. 

     As an interesting side-note, there are already (it is 1:21 pm, eastern on Christmas day as I type this) there are 10 Spice Drops on ebay, and one has already sold. I will very likely sell mine. But first I am going to wait until I see what I got. 

Saturday, December 25, 2021

Weird Things Women Get Shamed For

     Yesterday, I was thinking of actually writing a post ahead of time. You know, like I have been doing for more than a year until 2 days ago when I dropped the ball. I was thinking about what to write about, since I hadn't yet managed to take any photos of the one doll I managed to get finished last week, and I happened to see one of those random product posts on Facebook. And then I went down the comments rabbit hole. All of a sudden I knew what to write about. It has no relation to doll work, and only bits of relation to my life in general. 
     Today I am going to write about weird things that women get shamed for. By some men and by some women. Nothing is universal, there are no absolutes, but these are things that men almost never get shamed for. Sometimes because they don't relate to men at all, and sometimes because of double standards. So here we go. 
     Woman have been shamed for:

Body hair. Either for having too much, or for removing too much.

Not smiling enough.

Having periods, and anything that goes along with it. 

Having larger thighs or butt. I had grown men making sexual comments to me since I was 11. 

Being too muscular, or too thin, or too fat. 

For not having children. Or for having children. 

For having stretch marks.

For being too tall. 

For not being in a relationship.

For having large breasts. Or for having small breasts. 

For being too shy. Or for being too outgoing. 

Wearing clothing that is too revealing. Wearing clothing that is too covering. 

Caring too much about fashion. Not caring enough about fashion.

Wearing too much makeup. Not wearing enough makeup.

Dieting. Not dieting.

Not dying gray hair. 

Having tattoos. 

       These are actual things that women have been shamed for. Often. And there are a lot of other things. It really is a strange thing to me. I have seen entire groups (many) whose sole purpose is to talk about how women with tattoos are whores. Really? What started this rabbit hole was a makeup primer ad on Facebook. The comments went from "does this actually work", "does it work on undereye wrinkles" to, "I like women to be natural". The comments also included many women saying that they had great skin because they had never worn makeup, with other women then replying that makeup doesn't ruin your skin (it really does not, and a lot of makeup these days can help protect your skin). I wondered why people who don't wear makeup were commenting at all. Anyway, I have dealt with the comments on having large breasts, or a big butt, tattoos, colored hair, not coloring my gray hair, being too heavy, having kids (especially since I had them young), and my least favorite, for having a kid with special needs. There really are people who will sort of "blame" the mother if a kid is different. Clearly, we must have done something wrong. Not disciplined enough. These things are said and thought, and are completely ridiculous. 

     So my hope for 2022, and every year, is that we can all learn to be a little nicer to each other. Stop judging each other on things beyond our control or our personal choices that have absolutely no consequence on anyone else. And let's please give Anne some ideas of what she can write about or we may get some more wonky posts like this one, lol! I am also open to guest posts!

Christmas Cheer

     Merry Christmas! Guess who didn't have a post ready? Again. That would be me. I meant to write a post last night. I even thought about it and then... went and read and forgot all about it. Keeping up with the daily blog has been a super struggle lately. Mostly because I have not been getting much done with the doll work. I may have to skip some days in 2022. I am afraid if I start skipping I will hardly ever blog. Maybe I need a topic list. 
     Thursday was our last day of school before the break. My friend Jen brought me this very cute gift! The mug has a "cupcake" made from a swirled pair of cozy socks. She was upset that it didn't have a red pom-pom cherry on top, because the craft store was completely out of them. I told her it's fine, I'm allergic to cherries anyway, lol! The candle crackles like a fireplace. What a cute gift!
One of my students, who isn't even one of mine currently, brought me this cute candy cane mug, Kisses, hot chocolate, and a candy cane. 
    I also got this themed gift from another students, who isn't currently mine. I think at some point Elecktra and I will make some cookies together... that she can eat, lol. 
      These gifts were very thoughtful and made my day. My friend wanted to give me chocolate and cupcakes, but knows I can't eat normal ones, so she made me a cupcake (which is way cuter in person) and that was fantastic. Two students, who saw me when I was a para in their classes (paras are usually somewhat invisible to students), brought me gifts. Thoughtful, wonderful gifts. I had student bring me a card and one even made me a card. All of it is amazing. I am reminded of this meme I stole from my friend Jenn's Facebook page. 

     I don't need gifts, I have plenty of stuff, but to know that someone was thinking of me is much. Every blog comment I get is like a gift. Someone thought enough of my words to say something in return. I know we don't always have something to say, I read blogs (about once a week at this point...) and only sometimes have something to say to the writer. But I love it. Merry Christmas to those who celebrate, happy anything else you celebrate. If you celebrate nothing, Happy Saturday. Thank you for reading my blog. Thank you of thinking enough of my words to keep coming back. :) 


Friday, December 24, 2021

Friends and Family.

      I forgot to write a post for today, lol. Not that I didn't have photos ready for one, just no words. Anyway, last Sunday Elecktra, Travis, Alex, and I went to Bright Nights. Alex, Travis, and I tried to go to Bright Nights last year, but it just didn't work. We sat in traffic for hours and when we were almost to the gate they closed early and turned us away. What a bummer. 
      This year we left super early and tried to go in from the other direction. For some reason it is usually a shorter wait time. And it was. We got a silly selfie while we were sitting in the traffic (how is it Alex is the only one that doesn't look like insane?) and we listened to Christmas music and talked about what we would see. Not much changes at Bright Nights, it is just fun to go with family and friends that are family. 
     One of the first sections of the Bright Nights display has silver and blue lights. The carousel is always one of my favorites. It doesn't move, but it's still really cool. The park does have some displays that are animated, this just isn't one of them. 
     One of the most fun parts of Bright Nights is Suess Land. Dr. Suess was from Springfield, Massachusetts, and Bright Nights is in Forest Park, also in Springfield. The last time I talked about Bright Nights I might have talked a bit about the history of the park. Most of the land was donated by Everett Barney, though a quick search shows that a sizeable chunk was originally donated by Orick Greenleaf. Fun fact; there is a Greenleaf Drive (where, coincidentally, all the residents put up very impressive Christmas light displays) and a smaller park, also in Springfield, which is named Greenleaf. Yes, I did just go down a tiny rabbit hole to learn some history. It happens. And I would do it again! 
The Grinch and Max are always fun to see. 
         And of course the Cat in the Hat. I completely forgot to take any photos of the dinosaurs. I'm sure I have at some point in the past. 
Something different we did this year was stop at the gift shop. Travis got to meet Santa.
      We also went on the carousel. Let me tell you, when it is 31 degrees outside, you are dressed for my super warm car, and riding metal horses, masks will help you keep warm! I am glad we went on the carousel, but I was equally glad when the ride was over. It was so cold!
       While the Bright Nights display hasn't really changed in years it was still a really fun trip. Mostly because of the people in the car. There was a lot of silliness, including me buying a flamingo wearing a Santa hat (that I 1000% didn't need) and lots of laughter. This morning it is snowing, which I am not a fan of, but I can't help but think how many people will be happy about it. 


Wednesday, December 22, 2021

My Job is Hard

      My job is hard. As the days go on it doesn't get much easier. Being a para is hard because you are often trying to help the kids without having the information you need, no time to make connections, and so on. Now that I am the teacher I make sure to provide the paras working with me the answer keys to help make their jobs easier. But that doesn't make my job easier. 
     Strangely, something that has helped is that I am starting to make better connections with a lot of the kids. I know it's not because I have more time to work with them, I absolutely don't. Maybe it is because the way paras are viewed is different than the way teachers are viewed. Paras are seen as lesser in many ways. Less important, less intelligent, and so on. A lot of teachers view paras this way, and so do parents. Which leads the students to see paras as lesser. Paras are not less than teachers, we are teachers too. We just don't plan the lessons.
      All of a sudden I have kids who can remember my name, who never bothered to remember my name before. I am the same person. The only difference is now I am the one standing in front of the room performing, trying to get them to learn something. But I am also still the one that stands next to their desk or pulls up a chair and says we need to get this work done. My job has changed because now I am planning the lessons, correcting the work, doing the teaching, while still helping, motivating and reminding. The days go by very quickly. And my job is very challenging at times. 
     Yesterday was especially challenging. I had a student have an emergency in class. We handled it exactly as we should, and they were OK. Until it happened again in another class. And then they were OK. But it is hard on that student, and hard on the other kids who witness it. I spent a lot of time in the hallway checking in with kids and helping them process their feelings. One kid told me they didn't even like this particular student, but they felt so bad that it was happening, they didn't want it to happen to anyone. I have never seen that level of empathy from a high school kid. Or even from many adults. 
     I had a kid come to me to process some scared feelings they have about a situation they might be in. It is hard to learn when you are nervous and distracted. So we processed a bit and then I encouraged them to get some work done, and we quietly processed some more in between me helping other kids. I also had a kid open up about past trauma and it nearly floored me. Some of the things that have happened to these kids... and things that have been said to them by people who should care the most... it really is heartbreaking. So we processed some more, I encouraged some more work and praised the work that got done. It is hard to concentrate when your heart hurts. It's hard to concentrate when you are worried about your friends. It's hard to concentrate when you are scared about a potential life altering thing. I am extremely grateful that these kids have decided I am safe to talk to. Maybe they see me differently because I have been at center stage for the last 5 weeks. Teaching is performance art after all. Or maybe it is just 5 weeks more of getting to know each other and they are now comfortable with me. Whatever it is I am grateful they are willing to open up to me and let me try to help them. In a strange way, it makes my job a tiny bit easier. 
     The crown I am wearing was a gift from my friend Angelique. I wore it for half the day yesterday (as soon as I got it). One kid asked why I was wearing a crown and I said it's obviously because I am the queen. I went around the school with it, to the copy room, not a single teacher said a thing. Clearly they get me. 

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

More Secret Santa

      Today I am going to talk about the other model horse hobby gift exchange I signed up for and my extremely amazing Santa, Carra McClelland.  Carra gave me enough incredibly thoughtful gifts to last me a couple of years. I feel quite spoiled. On Friday a box arrived with several fun gifts in it. This was already quite generous and was more than enough. I have the cute pawprint and Hello Kitty trimmed pouch and the pink glow in the dark silly putty. 
This rainbow narwhal that I took a nap with immediately after posting about my gifts in the gift exchange group (I have been a little bit tired again. The seasons are changing). 
I got this very cool glass piece that Carra made. 
And this Powerpuff girls eyeshadow palette
It's a really fun eyeshadow palette that I don't happen to already own. 
     After I posted my thank yous, Carra said that this was actually box #2 and box #1 was still set to arrive. What? MORE gifts? I already received a really cool group of items, I didn't need more. But I got more. I got a lot more. Saturday the mail arrived and there was an even larger box from Carra. 
There was a wide variety of snacks and treats that I can actually eat. Including the potentially limited edition pumpkin maple Super Coffee that is my favorite that I can't seem to find anymore. 
     I got a variety of custom fabrics from Spoonflower. These will become all sorts of miniature items very soon. 
There is this very cool to-go mug...
     Which is glittery and has my name on it! I am weirdly fascinated by the fact that the horses and my name are stickers, but I can't feel them. I think Carra must have glossed over them? I have no idea how she did it, but it's exceptionally cool. When I was little I would always hunt for things with my name on them. But most of the time I would only find things that said Ann. Which is not my name. Give me my E!

     I received this cozy flamingo blanket, which apparently glows in the dark. There is always room for more fuzzy blankets, and flamingo items. And I guess glow in the dark items too. 
      I got some stablemates that I may need to talk myself into prepping so I can paint them, a couple of miniatures, and some driving cones Carra made. I didn't ask, I should have, but I think quite a few of these gifts were made by Carra. 
     I also received a cool shirt that matches my hair! I am excited about that. 
Carra included Travis in the gifting as well. He received a T-shirt with a T-rex on it...
     And a little T-rex toy. He has been hanging out with the T-rex since he got it. 
     Thank you SO MUCH Carra for your incredibly generous, incredibly thoughtful gifts. I am feeling quite spoiled by my Secret Santas this year. 

Monday, December 20, 2021

Day Drinker

     I am not an OF collector. I have said that often enough, and I really do mean it. Breyer has really stepped up their game in the past several years and the horses have gotten better and better, and more desirable in my eyes. Some  of what I really don't like about OF models is that I can't fix them, because then they would no longer be OF. I am a prepper (even though I hate prepping) and seeing seams and weird lumps, and not being able to do anything about it, really kind of hurts me. Some people love the hunt for the "perfect" OF model. I am not one of those people. So I have shelf models, most of which I have lukewarm feelings about since, to me, they are not special horses. Performance models are... well, for performance. They don't have to be perfect models, they just need to be good for performance. That is most of the criteria for me to want to keep an OF model in my collection. Most of the live shows I went to in 2019, the last year I attended live shows, were for OF models only. Which meant if I wanted to show in performance, I needed to have OF models in my collection. And let's be honest, I always want to show in performance. 
     Anyway, today we are going to talk about Day Drinker, who is my Breyerfest store special model Hal. Because of the names of many of my horses (Bootlegger, Day Drinker, Three Day Bender, etc.) people might assume I am an alcoholic. That's not the case. I literally go months, and sometimes years, without having a drink. I can take it or leave it. I just find the names funny. There was one year I named a whole bunch of horses after different brands of whiskey. But back to Day Drinker. I showed him once, in August of 2019, at the Fun in the Sun show I talked about recently in the post about Lilith. Day drinker showed in the western division only. And while he did not do badly, he didn't do amazing things. I put him in other stockwork, with my working cowhorse entry that isn't perfect with any of the horses I have because I really need a cow in a slight turn, who is on the right lead. 
     I put him in games, where he got third, potentially because this game has been seen a lot and is not overly creative. 
      I put him in trail, where he got 4th place, with a slightly better than boring poles entry. Though it was not much better than boring, and the poles are actually super far apart (though I may have measured them, and they may actually be accurate.)
      And Day Drinker got 2nd in Other Western with his Extreme Cowboy cowboy curtain entry.  It is entirely possible I put him in some other classes where he didn't place at all. I don't remember and I am not motivated enough to go and look it up. 
       Some horses don't show well under particular judges. Some don't show well right away and it takes a bit to find their groove. I have plenty of horses that show very well, pretty consistently, and since I am not an OF collector, I thought about selling Hal. I am pretty sure he was even up for sale, but that was when the OF market was normal. When even semi-rare models would not always sell quickly (or at all). 
      Anyway, Day Drinker is still with me and will stay with me forever, unless some unseen circumstance forces me to sell almost everything. He lives in a box and I see him once in a while, but that's it. So why do a keep an OF model I don't really show and I almost never see? Because he was the last model I got from my friend Pat. Pat and I had sort of a standing Breyerfest trade deal going on. In 2018 I traded Pat a doll for the Breyerfest Crystal horse and Ichabad Crane, who I show consistently and do quite well with. 
     So I still have a horse that I got from Pat in a trade, why do I feel I need to keep Hal? I have no idea. Maybe because he is the last one I got from her. Maybe if I ever find a tack set that Pat made (I am still actively looking for a set since I sold both the sets she made for me years ago). Maybe it was just one of those weird 2020 thoughts that I will feel differently about on a different day. But for now, Day Drinker will stay with me. At least for now, he reminds me of Pat. 


Sunday, December 19, 2021

Upper Level Dressage

      Dolls happen around here sometimes. Last week was finishing up some dolls that carried over from the week before, and getting a couple more order dolls finished. One of the dolls that carried over was this upper level dressage doll. It now occurs to me, I don't own a dressage saddle. I also have no idea really how to do anything but lower level dressage, but whatever. Anyway, I don't make a lot of dressage dolls, but I really do like them a lot. They always look so polished. That makes me happy. I have been a shipping slacker  taking it easy on myself when it comes to shipping and have really only been shipping on Mondays at this point. I am not pushing myself to try to ship after school every day. So I ship on Mondays when we are out doing laundry and errands. It's very convenient. 
     Have I mentioned that I hate Tic Tok? I have friends that send me links to Tic Tok videos, and they are funny, but as a whole I kind of hate it. It is a time suck that I definitely don't have time for. It is a complete distraction to the kids at school (that and snapchat, texting their friends, and their parents, and so on and so on), but I especially hate those stupid Tic Tok trends. Steal large things from your school, steal from your teachers, punch a teacher, and the latest was Friday's shoot up a school Friday challenge. Really? Are people that desperate for likes and followers (or views? How does Tic Tok work?) that they feel the need to make up these ridiculous challenges? And how is shooting up a school considered cool at all? Or any of the other destructive or violent things that are on these challenge lists? I am really good with people, but a lot of times I really don't understand people. 
     So Friday a lot of kids were out. I had not one, but two emails (one from the superintendent and one from the principal) making us aware of this nationwide threat against the schools. We had more police outside the schools and I know we were not the only district like that. I had to explain to a class, at length, that our classroom is actually very safe. The door was locked, and we have a closet we can all fit in (and lock). The kids were convinced a shooter would just shoot the handle off. So I had to explain about the mentality of mass shooters and how they are not going to take the time breaking into rooms that may be empty. And I reassured kids. Teaching is hard enough without having to deal with the anxiety of kids who are convinced they are going to get shot because their parents made them come to school. I hate that the kids are scared. I hope that I maybe reassured them a bit. 
      On a good note, I think my lamps have been making a difference in the mood of the classes. Things have been a lot calmer, even in my most difficult classes. Not perfect, but we are getting there. When they get out of hand and get, yet another, talk on respect, I get some mildly shamed looks and mumbles of "sorry miss". But we can do better. And I tell them that. We can always do better. My kids are learning it, and if we could get the Tic Tok creators of stupid trends to do better we'd really be getting somewhere. 

Saturday, December 18, 2021

More Tack Making

     This is a bridle. Or at least, it will be a bridle when it is done being random bits of leather cord and silver pieces hanging out on the table. Last weekend I got into making the bridle I need for the western side saddle I am having made. Why a western side saddle? Because I don't have one, obviously. 
     I don't love the way the ear piece came out for this bridle. I don't hate it, but I don't love it and I might remake it at some point. 
     There is a lot fewer beads on this bridle in comparison to my Morgan western pleasure bridle. For two reasons. One, I ran out of beads. And two, Morgan horse bridles have a ridiculous amount of silver on them. Almost all of them. Usually men's stuff seems to be a bit more toned down (at least clothing) but even the men's bridles had silver on almost the entire length of the reins. Western side saddle seems to be almost minimal in comparison. Ooh, I need to get a comparison photo of the two bridles together! Maybe when I have my new saddle. 
     I also went with the thinner cord for this bridle. Sometimes I love it and sometimes I think it is potentially a bit too thin. I should put on a doll on the horse and check and see how I feel about it then. Anyway, another bridle is finished, now I just need to make one for Astrid. And since I got some bits in the bits and pieces (lol, bits and pieces...) of tack making stuff I got from Jana I am all set to make another bridle. Maybe I should get into that today. I guess we'll see.