Friday, May 30, 2008

Barn/mare update

God has heard my prayers to push tonight’s wee hour rain back until a reasonable time tomorrow morning. :) The barn REEKS of bleach. One of my boarder’s (the gal with the adorable silver chestnut QH) is pretty active in showing and says she’s really anal about lysoling like mad when she shows… so she was more than happy to scrub bleach with me today. [blushes] She actually did a lot more than I did (which I’m so thankful for) because I loath breathing a lot of bleach. She brought a garden sprayer for it too. Anyhow, horses are less fond of the bleach smell than I am so this is why I’m SO happy the place has another 12hrs to air out before thunderstorms. I gotta get up wicked early for me but that’s fine. :)

I don’t know too much about the mare. GEEZ! I didn’t even say that she went to Tufts yesterday afternoon here in my blog! YIKES! Yes, she needed to go. So I’ve also heard from the owner this morning that they’d stabilized her fluid level. That they expect it will take a week to get the colitis under control (I think?) I don’t know for certain about if she even needs antibiotics or what really to expect I’ll get to know about the infection aspect. I do know her temp was pretty mild (thank god) when she left I know she’s in Tuft’s isolation unit (fwiw, she had to wait half a day for another horse to be cleared from there, they only have one area cleared for isolation).

I don’t need to know much more right now I guess but I do have a call into the vet. My barn ought to be sterile right now. I’ve taken the quarantine signs down so I REALLY hope I don’t get in trouble for being hasty about that. One boarder doesn’t want to go in there. One is away. And then there’s the one who blessedly bleached for me today so I could scrape stalls out. It was time to strip them anyhow. Lol! In the meantime since I am working late late tongith I probably won’t call the owner (she’s been tired) until tomorrow if I don’t hear anything. I just stopped home here to change clothes/wash up and I’m right back out there. I spy no urgent emails but I’m days behind guys!! SORRY!

Please keep jingling/saying prayers for the mare!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Mare worse - my time is scarce

I need to report this here since I’m now going to be even further behind on things for a good deal of time.

The reaction Lizzy had [edit made Sat when I had a chance after Wed to reread this] could possibly as I was told[/end edit] have caused a secondary Salmonella infection. [editorial Sat update also is that it's looking less and less likely - THANK GOD for the poor gal - I'm personally not too worried about that now after hearing more, however Wed you could've knocked me over with a feather when I got a call where I was expecting to here that the mare had a blockage or something and instead am told she's having diarrhea everywhere and it's got to be handled with the worst case scenario in mind ] So [Wed pm after call] I’m now printing out quarantine signs and will have to do some decontamination procedure set ups for my barn. [another edit add in] Because projectile watery stool was spraying out of her we had to act as if it all was contaminated - my viewpoint is that even if it's as benign as edible cake-mix it's GROSS and UNSANITARY to leave uncleaned with a disinfecting agent when horses crib and lick bars and elderly people and kids come through daily and put their hands on stall edges. All stalls are open with nothing but bars at butt hight. Hey, I didn't build it. It's nice and airy most of the time. It was far too airy Wed/Thurs however. [/end edit add in]. She’s currently staying on IV in a stall. She may move to a vet hospital. For my part I’ve just got a lot to do.

Article from the horse magazine; (signing up is free and cheap and really a good thng for real horse owners).

I am behind on notifying folks about Hazel production and shipments and such. I’m sorry but fear not --> the casters are plugging away, they have your money from recent payments, and the COAs & invoices to go with them will hopefully go out this week. I’ve told the casters they can send the horses sans COAs until I have time to package them up and mail them out. I really really appreciate everyone’s patience.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Weekend update

Well obviously the weekend wrap up wouldn’t be complete without a status update of my boarder. She’s “ok” right now. She still needs pain relief for her muscles and shortly after every shot of banamine she’s eating voraciously for a bit. It’s been stressful and I haven’t been online much. Sat night her owner spent the night. Sunday night we camped out there (we’d actually planned to camp in a state park but they were probably full of families and noise anyhow so it was quite nice in the back field by the stream).

So that’s that for now. Her appetite and energy level comes and goes. I worry.

Weekend update for May 25th

Devilish Kokopelli Live, Golden CO (DKL)

Obviously I have not been really concerned with resins all weekend. Lol! I did finally chat with Heather R who was Hazel’s proxier and assure her it was most definitely “my bad” with the hastily made carrying case and the tight fit (because I don’t want it to cost me a fortune, or $20 extra per trip around the country). Anyhow, she suffered a broken ear and some very light scratches in her finish. Easy fixes most likely. We’ll see when I get her. Heather shared a photo album and I spied some “Weekend Winners” to share. :)

I don’t know who’s they are but that appy looks very detailed! I wish I could see the grey better but the exposure is too bright - I'ms ure he's cool too of course! :) Kudos to the owners/painters (and feel free to write me so I can put this info on the pics for my gallery someday!)

& Before I rush out of the house again I just want to say a quick thank you to the artists who tried to help all the same! (hugs them) :)

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Mare update so far..

I only got away from the farm for a few hours yesterday when my boyfriend was able to watch. And even then he spied mare laying down (but not sleeping) so I had to trot off to go do more mare staring.

Mare is def going downhill. I asked the owner to check her throughout the night. Yesterday I just didn't like her demenor all day and while there was evidence that she had further bowel movements, just didn't like the signs there either. Anyhow, owner spent the night there and this am her mare's appetite is gone entirely almost so vet is coming soon. Finally she (someone - ANYONE! Shocked ) witnessed the mare actually passing manure but it was very firm. -sighs-

So she has gone from the diarrhea that preceded her reaction to that. Had gut sounds when I last listened at least. Let's hope her system starts to straighten itself out today.

Of all the colic types I've been unfortunate enough to witness, the ones that go in and out of it vaguely (interested in food, then not, then again), that tend to be impaction related are the most concerning to me. Only horse I've ever seen having a colic that turned fatal was impaction. His was complicated by bowel intolerances though (he'd already had segments of his bowel surgically removed IIRC). I'm trying to remain optimistic here. She's got to get over this hurdle of the cramping up and get regular about her eating soon.

She isn't going to be "right" for a long time. Jingle for her please.

I could use the rest from my intensive watching. I'm tired too.

***in OTHER news***
Someone sent me links to a couple of DKL's show photos. I spied some dinky dukes on the champ callback table I think. Yay for them!

Hazel had her own hard time this week however. She sustained some scratches and an earbreak (actually it stuck in the shipping case). Poor Heather R! She was SO sweetly worried about it. I told her that Hazel was about the last mare I was worried about at the moment. She's an easily repairable mare and has no owner currently to fret. Haven't heard back (Heather was a co-showholder so I didn't expect to!), but maybe she found an artist to do touch ups. In either case, I told her just go ahead and put her out for folks to see, scratched barrel and missing ear and all and to stop worrying please! Hopefully she (Heather) had a good time in the end. Gads does it make me feel bad when people worry on my behalf. Broken resins that aren't owned and doted on by anyone are the last of my worries! lol! ;)

*****ADDING ON: Mare update later AM*******

Vet came and didn't find much other than the extreme soreness. So she's treating w/banamine to see if this helps. Less than an hour later it seems to be helping. Mare hadn't stopped drinking altogether so hopefully by grazing/eating more she'll start to recoup her strength and overcome the muscle pain.

******ADDING ON TUES EVE*******
Owner gave me this "the serial number on the vaccine is 1822127B"
& She reported that Fort Dodge is nice enough (snorts) to pay vet costs when this happens.. uh so I guess FYI to the anyone in the same situation that that's worth following through on.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Vaccine reaction of the worst type yesterday...

2015 I am removing this post.  The reaction was found to have happened as a result of the particular single batch being bad - something that can happen to milk or anything with a shelf life that is subject to poor handling.

This post has been viewed far too many times recently and I simply have no wish to fuel the anti-vax mentality.  I vaccinate all my animals & myself for the sake of us all.

You can have a reaction of the worst type to a bee sting too.  Always use veterinary professionals (one on hand saved this mare's life) and don't buy discounted drugs if you vaccinate yourself, or have them shipped cheaply.  The company making this drug paid for the  animal's treatment as I understand it (although it's possible handling of the vax after it left them was the cause)...and she lived a long time after this event, well into her 30s.

Vaccinations still save lives.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Weekend Winner update for May 17th and 18th (NWC and AHL)

Ok, I’m going to start giving shouts out & picture updates to “Winners” in my blog. It’ll help me later when updating the winners photos my galleries too, aside from (hey!) :D just being a fun way to congratulate peeps! I’m making this announcement JUST THIS ONCE but after that, don’t worry, I’ll keep the updates simply to my blog and perhaps MH$P but I won’t pepper the bulletin boards and my yahoogroup with notice of every little ribbon. Cuz that sure would be tiresome, eh? ;)

Soooo if you have a winner (going forward only please!), please give me a shout after the show ( ).

More than a few sculptors and painters that I know always say that they are very rarely aware that their work even won anything. So I’m hoping that this way too, perhaps some painters can learn of the wins as well. :) It’s always a bit of creative encouragement to hear that our works are out in the world earning their keep!

Weekend update for May 17th and 18th

North West Congress (NWC)

Reporting on “Hazel train” wins!

Just heard this afternoon back from Mel Miller who my proxied ‘Hazel’ that she held her own out there in WA. I can't tell you how tickled I am about this! I spent some time Sunday scouring NWC show albums and saw some absolutely astounding horses so the word must be true that it’s tough competition. I really wasn’t expecting much and when I didn’t hear anything I was thinking “mmm yeah well it was too much to expect anyhow”. HOWEVER, I’m over the moon to learn she actually got a NAN card (2nd place) in a breed class! Mel described it as “quality competition” in a class that had to be split by color. And in the workmanship “bay” class (apparently FOUR TABLES of horses – my jaw dropped at hearing that!), she got a 6th place. Honestly I think that was far too generous. I saw the competition. I think Mel is just pulling my leg. ;) So stats there are:

  • Artist Resin Sport Part Bred / Other Pure [split] (judge Diana Patterson) 2nd
  • And Artist Resin Bay (judge Robin Lee) 6th

Liz (Arabian Acres) reports that the Flitwick [edit add in!] owned by Barb Ness, “Freckles” took Res Mini AR Division Champion! Congrats Liz!

American Heartland Live

Congrats to Becky Henson who’s Traditional Deputed Duke “Gold Keeper” painted by Cathy Wallden took
  • Artist Resin Champion Sport
  • Overall Reserve Grand Artist Resin

a special thank you to Dot Coffman for the photo and especially for locating the owner for me! (hugs!) :) This is primarily the reason I never get pictures to my winners galleries when I do see or hear of them. Thanks Dot!

Another proxier at AHL, Diana Parker, reported on two artist’s proofs owned by Leesa Miller.
Diana said “They won against the big boys!”

One is artist’s proof Flitwick “Flick and Swish” who got a division champ

And dinky duke artist’s proof “Descartes

Congrats Leesa and thank you so very much Diana!!! :)

Friday, May 16, 2008

Big Spring Update:

Crazy busy here – but I’m long overdue for some updates


I won’t be going. For a couple of reasons. Primarily financial. See below :)

My current work load:

I’ve gotten another job. As you probably know I already have a small boarding stable (4 boarders and my donkey and my own ‘special needs’ horse). This is sorta still drawing even but times are anxious for the real horse world these days. So a few months back I decided to get a part time evening job. It works well around the horses -> I have total flexibility as to when I go in do it. And it’s close by so I’m not wasting too much gas to get there. & If for some terrible reason I had to go back to the barn in the evening (say for a sick horse or bad T-storm cropping up I suppose), the ability to drop what I’m doing and go do so is no issue with this job. This has been key to me. A truly flexible hours job is hard to find.

It doesn’t “pay” but managing a barn is a big responsibility. Please understand though I do the barn managing gig for the sake of my own horse’s health (to keep him in the safest/most natural situation possible -> Connecticut has very little land and most, almost all, barns in my immediate area do not do 24/7 turnout with lots of good hay which is critical for him). It doesn’t make a profit but it does save me money as historically (in his first 4.5 years of life before started caring for him full time) I used to have extremely high vet bills with him and other past horses that I’ve boarded around here. Bills for injuries and colics. Totally avoidable things 75% of the time. That is really why I do this barn managing gig. I haven’t (really) ridden in years, it’s more about just being outdoors and the therapeutic value of it. All the same, it’s made it a real challenge to getting other types of work to make sure ends continue to meet.

So the time I’ve chosen to do these 20hrs a week of additional work are the hours I’ve historically accomplished very little during (those evening wind-down hours). However I did used to get a lot of evening internet time (mind you it would be interrupted by phone calls and making dinner and quality time with the man even when I had these so called “free” evenings!). ;) So in a way, it’s great to condense those things and be more focused and productive with less time. All the same, I still haven’t really found an ideal time to write emails and post online as much. After morning barn chores seems best in theory, but I’m still a little buried (and, admittedly in reality a little tired as I adjust to this new schedule). Bottom line is I’m not spending as much time on the art and client relations as I used to. Only about 30hrs a week now.

April thru May has also just simply been a tad frantic for me for several additional reasons. Obviously there’s been studio work and bookkeeping for my resin sales and finishwork in progress. Also there has been coordinating spring shots with all the boarders. Farm maintenance that typically comes up in the spring. & again I’ve been trying to buy up as much hay as possible before gas goes up too much more. This literally meant stringing out some other bills and playing ‘creative financing’ with my own costs. After discussing things with the hay man I’ll probably continue to try to pack the loft to the rafters far sooner than normal this year as well – again pinching pennies in every way possible to ensure I don’t wind up in dire straits come fall/wintertime. The 2nd (3rd really – lol!) job will help me to do this far more easily. All in all it’s been a matter of juggling jobs and money really. That’s the biggest reason right there not to commit to spending half a tractor trailer load of hay on attending Breyerfest. No matter how I slice it, I can’t justify it.

I will very much miss the greatest social event of the year again though. I’ve had such a great time in the past hanging out with everyone. I do plan to get to a few local shows this year again still. I simply MUST see my hobby friends (to heck with the business side of it – it’s just great to visit with yall!). :)

Advertising plan in lieu of Breyerfest is to simply get my work out and about where people can see it in person. This is why I chose to do the Hazel train (proxy across the land). If this seems worthwhile maybe proxying more in the future is in order? Certainly is cheaper than long distance travel for me. I have to pay (multiple) people to care for the horses when I’m gone as well so traveling isn’t easy. Even day trips usually require me to make sure one feeding has someone lined up in case I’m not back in time.

I also have another secret. Several truly exciting painters will hopefully have painted Hazel’s somewhere for sale (or bidding) ;) at Breyerfest. In my opinion these great paint jobs on my sculpture will be far better advertising than me spending well over a grand to go sit there with my one lonely unpainted item on display for “ordering”. (hehehe! isn’t that just the saddest image? Woee woe woe ;) chuckles – it’s more fun than that for those attending – really!). But seriously, it really is hard to justify with just “one item” … especially since I cannot afford to pre-cast resin stock to have on hand for sale.. Note however that MVS will *still* be there for pick-ups, don’t worry! I established that a while ago (long before ordering info went up).

In the studio:

I don’t want to rush “bitty bosco”. He probably won’t be “done” by Breyerfest (even if I had started out rushing once I’d found the info I needed on how to customize the tricky parts of him, like the tail area, scan-able.. he wouldn’t have been done by BF. At least not detailed out in mini form to an appreciable “pre-order” quality state imo.). Casting couldn’t begin until Aug anyhow and at the moment, simply put, the spare thousand dollars to shrink him doesn’t exist. I need to be 100% certain of a # of things (my schedule, the prototype’s quality & my finances) before I go racking up a credit card bill for him to be shrunk.

Currently, studio-wise, I’m wrapping up some commissions. The highly punctuated schedule is indeed making this a tad harder to do. I’m getting better at painting & spraying timing so that I have something to work on at all times that’s dry.

NAN Donations:

This year the only donation I’m doing besides that medallion I’d done for Lisa G.’s show, is to NAN. Last year I donated a Bosco resin but life gets in the way and the painter couldn’t meet the time frame needed by NAN by the time I’d gotten the customized resin to her. That lot will be going up this year I’m told (yay!). It will come with tack. Very cool. :)

New for this year is that Steph Michaud allowed me to talk her into donating a paint job to the ’08 NAN auction despite her CRAZY time demands working full-time painting and raising a family. I’m hugging her again mentally as I type this. She’s going to be customizing a Hazel. I’m simply thrilled. Steph’s command of color palettes can make me swoon. She’s no slouch with making little changes that make a horse cool and unique too. The latest news from Steph is that she’s done some changes to her mane and tail to make her unique. I’m pretty excited to see as Steph really has innovative ideas and at least once I’ve said “yes! I thought of sculpting it that way originally and love it!”. Anyhow, needless to say I’m excited.

Ok, so wrapping things up. I’m working more out of the house right now and thus will be in the studio/online a bit less.

Thus my tentative upcoming sales:

  • I still have some unpainted resins by other artists that I plan to tote to a few local shows and/or relist on MH$P
  • I’m still convincing myself that some of my own are never going to get painted and I ought to sell them too (Bosco, dinkies and maybe a Flitwick)
  • Definitely going to be wrapping up my painted Trad Independence resin soon
  • Have a couple of others more “mid-way” should I get a gust of wind in my sails that could be done by late spring at the soonest
  • Bitty bosco is the most high priority item aside from my commission/paint deals at the moment
  • Second to bitty b is Rocky (last seen here )
  • Hazel castings will be for sale on an ongoing basis J

It took me 3 days to get those thoughts organized while running around. Hope all of that made sense! Yikes that was a mouthful!!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Hazel train has left the station!

So far the "tour dates" are as follows..

May 17-18, 2008: Northwest Congress in Renton, WA.

May 24, 2008: Devilish Kokopelli Live in Golden, CO.

June 6, 2008: BreyerWest 2008 Open Show in Sacramento, CA.

June 7, 2008: Sacramento Summer Live in Sacramento, CA.

I'll post some more thoughts on this "advertising" approach to showing her off in person around the country shortly... :)

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

& The final wrap up picture gallery...

Big pictures here;

Sales info was updated a tad too here;

Aaaaaand "bitty bosco" (in his large prototype at least) has been coming along very well. Perhaps in the next few weeks I'll be sending him out to be scanned & shrunk. It's an expensive process though and the right up front work will save me time afterwards (which also equals money to me in a very tangible way these days) . I'll definitely post comparative pics here when ready. :) Meanwhile I've been working very hard night and day so I probably won't post as many little updates.

I suppose I should add mention that Hazel's sales are chugging along wonderfully for the economy and mold #1 only has about 5 castings left. That really is a "wow!" to me! Basically I see that as a small miracle and I really want to add here that I am so supremely grateful to these buyers; I thank my lucky stars a lot. I know quite a few artists who are selling out small #s relatively fast but even a whole single mold of 50 is hard to sell these days given the economy. & Some really amazing painters (ok, imo the hobby's most "sought after ones!" woo hoo!) have ordered her too (some already have their copies by now). :) Sooo I hope to be sharing more galleries in the nearish future as well.

Doing a happy dance today. :D

That's it for now!