Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Shelter Dogs ROCK!

I had my first portrait session this past Saturday.  It was with one of my favorite shelter dogs and a volunteer.  So it really wasn't a paying gig, just something I wanted to do for fun to showcase the dogs available for adoption.  Thought I would show y'all a few pics...

Scruffy was so excited when I picked him up from the shelter.  He was an excellent passenger to and from the shoot.  And an even better model! I was happy to spend some time with him outside the "fence".  Fingers crossed he finds his forever home very soon!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Great Coon Removal

As I was getting ready for work yesterday morning, I heard Diesel going crazy in the yard.  Usually, it means either the cat is near the fence or someone has his toy.  I went to the backdoor to see what the commotion was all about.  He was barking up at a tree.  I thought maybe Miss Kitty was up it or another cat.  They've done it once before but it usually only takes once to learn the yard is not a favorable area.  I looked up in the tree and saw a raccoon.  Ugh.  I didn't have time for this.  I told Diesel to leave it alone.  He didn't want any part of it.  I finished getting ready and left.

I was hoping during the heat of the day, when the dogs go under the porch to stay cool, the coon would make a quick departure.  I called the Husband on my way home to see if he had seen it before leaving for work.  He said he didn't know anything about it.  The dogs acted normal when he left.  Good, I thought, the coon must have made it out.

Unfortunately, that did not occur.  When I pulled up the drive, Diesel and Lucky were under the tree.  I knew the coon was still there.  It was going on 12 hours since I had seen it there.  No tellin' how much longer it had been there before I found it.  I had to do something about it.

First I got the dogs out of the yard.  I put them in the stock trailer and left the yard gate open.  I hoped once the dogs were out of the area, the raccoon would decide to leave.  After watching from inside the house, I realized this was not working.

Then I looked online to see what a raccoon would eat.  It said nuts, berries, pretty much anything and peanut butter.  So I put some peanut butter on a piece of bread and put it lower in the tree.  Surely, this would entice it to come down.  And I waited.....nope.

By this time, I called the Husband to inform him the coon was still here.  We discussed some options and I told him I would try water.  So I put the nozzle on the hose and sprayed the coon.  I think he was just enjoying the pleasant cold water.  I'm sure it was a welcomed relief after sitting in the top of the tree all day in the 100 degree weather.  He didn't budge.

Okay, at this point I started throwing things at it in the tree.  Not the best idea since the stuff got caught in the branches!

Next bright idea, get the ladder and sorting stick.  Yep, I hauled the ladder out of the barn to the tree.  Took my sorting stick and poked the sucker.  Well, that just made him mad and bite the stick.  I envisioned him scurrying down that stick and eatin' my face off.  About this time, the Husband calls for an update.  I advise him I'm on a ladder jabbin' the monster with a stick.  He's (the Husband) not real happy since I'm the biggest klutz in the area.  He asked me to please not fall off the ladder.  Yea, I'll try not to.

I'm gettin' pretty perturbed with the situation.  I have given this dang thing every opportunity to leave my tree in a nice orderly fashion and he's snubbed his nose at me.  I pull out the next best thing, the hot shot.  So now I'm on top of the ladder with the hot shot trying to teach this bad boy a lesson.  But instead of going down the tree, he just goes around the top of the tree.  Like an idiot, I chase him.  Moving the ladder to each side, climbing up, giving him a shock, climbing down, moving it around.  I wore myself out.

The Husband calls again for another update.  I tell him the situation has not changed.  We're just both a little more pissy than before.  I don't want to shoot the stupid thing but he needs to get out of my tree!  Well we decide on the next best thing, I'll shoot it with rat shot.  That will surely get it down.

So I head outside with the .22 rifle.  Take aim as best I can thru all the branches and shoot.  At first I didn't even think I really hit it.  But then, it fell out of the tree....DEAD.  All that effort to keep from killing it and I killed it anyhow.

The Husband couldn't believe that the rat shot did it in.  I told him I'm just a dead eye.  Now he's calling me Davy Crockett.  He asked if I was gonna skin it out for a hat.  I told him well, no, it would be full of holes!

I'm hoping no other coons try to take their chance in our yard.  They won't get as many chances next time!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Wife, Where Are You? UPDATED!

Sorry I haven't been a regular on here.  Is anyone else having this issue?  Or am I just a slacker!?  My main problem is it's hot and dry and there's not much going on outside.  All the animals are trying to stay in the shade.  We're not messin' with them.  We need rain so bad!  This is the neighbor's corn crop.

Pitiful, huh.  Sad really.  The farmers are losing all their crops.  Ranchers are selling off their herds.  No hay to feed, no grass growing, feed prices keep going up!  Had a streak of 9 days over 100 degrees.  Today we had a cold front come in, it was 99 degrees with a heat index of 106.  Small chance of rain tonight.  Fingers crossed!!

Well enough with the doom and gloom, how about some good news!

Okay, this is not good news.  A friend of our's was diagnosed with a brain tumor in April.  He had surgery to remove it.  It was the size of a LEMON!  Now he's doing chemo and radiation.  We attended a fundraiser for him this past Saturday.  He is in really good spirits.  He told the Husband you just never know when something like this can happen.  He had a headache that wouldn't go away, went to the doctor and BOOM, you have cancer!  So we went to the fundraiser.  It was a steak dinner, feedlot sortin' and auction at his cowboy church.  Awesome turn out.  I so miss that area and the people.  Just good 'ol country folk.

I took two of my framed prints, hoping they would bring in some money.  Well they brought in almost $400!  How crazy is that!? I was ecstatic.  Plus I got a photography gig photographing buckin' bulls for Christmas presents.

We bought a hand full of stuff at the auction too.  My favorite buy was this...

A zebra print petticoat!  You should have seen the look on people as the Husband bid on that for me! ;-)  Of course we had to explain I was going to use it on dogs.  I had Harley model it the next day.  He was NOT a happy camper!

What else is going on?  Well, I have a photo shoot with a shelter dog on Saturday. Can't wait to do it.  Have a volunteer modeling for me.  We are doing a rocker style theme.  I wanted to do something more creative with the shelter dogs.  Another way to get them in the public and show how awesome they are .  Hope to do many more styled shoots.  I have all these ideas in my head.

My 4 Paw Project bracelets came in.  I put a link on the side bar to buy.  They are $2 and all proceeds go to my local shelter.  Even the Husband is wearing one!  I couldn't believe he asked for one.  And he's sold some at his work.

OH!  I set up a morning in July to do mini pet portrait sessions.  30 minute session in a local park for $50.  $25 of the cost goes to the shelter.  In less than 24 hours of posting the event, all but 3 time slots were filled!  I was totally amazed!

OMG! I had a local doctor contact me today.  She wants me to come to her home and take pictures of her SIX dogs!  And pictures of her office staff for her website!  I'm excited but REALLY nervous.  I'm waiting for that thing called confidence to kick in.  Yep, still waiting!

ALSO, a pet therapy group contacted me.  They asked if I would take their member photos.  Of course, I said!  I would be honored!  So I am donating my time to them.  Will provide the President with a CD to use online.  Then if the members actually want a picture, they can purchase them.

Oh, oh, oh....The shelter asked if I would give adopters a special discount.  I had thought about it.  But never went to them.  They are awesome in promoting me.  So now, when you adopt from the shelter, you will get a special discounted pet portrait session!  It is part of their adoption packet!

Okay, one last thing...the non-profit spay/neuter clinic updated their website with the pictures of the staff I had taken for them.  They are so happy with how they turned out.  That makes me happy.  The director asked me what they could do to promote me.  I told her I just wanted to do something nice for them and help bring in money.  She posted on their site about me and I think that's what brought the doctor knocking!

So it looks like all my success in my charity work is spilling over into my business.  It's totally cool.

I forgot!!!! Yesterday, I was notified that a picture I entered into a contest made the cut and is now in the next round of voting.  All I need are votes!!  You can click HERE to vote.  I am "D", the momma cow licking her baby.  You don't have to give your name or email for your vote to count.  Only one vote allowed per computer.  I was greatly appreciate it!!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day Pa!

Love you bunches Dad!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Worshipin' the Sprinkler

It's miserably hot here.  Has been for awhile now, will be until September.  Not something I'm looking forward to.  We have been in the 100+ degrees and no relief in sight.

So what do we do in this heat? What any other kid does...

Sprinkler fun!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Exciting News!

Gonna talk about my alter ego now.  Y'all know I have been working with my local shelter taking dog pictures.  In fact, look at this precious boy I took a picture of yesterday....

I could have stuffed this guy in my shirt and snuck him out!  So 4 Paws Project has been doing very well.  My shelter rocks and they are so supportive of me.  

But get this...4 Paws has gone international!!  I was contacted by a photographer in Calgary AB if she could be a 4 Paws photographer for her local shelters and rescues!  How awesome is that?!  After I quit doing the happy dance, I told her "of course!"  So now I have a 4 Paws Project Calgary.  You can find it on Facebook, along with my 4 Paws Project.  She is just getting started and I wish her all the luck.  Now we are looking for other photographers in other cities/towns willing to volunteer at their local shelters.  I never even thought about making a 4 Paws network until now.  Maybe we'll have 4 Paws Projects all over!

AND...I have teamed up with Painted Paws Pet Portraits.  This awesome lady is digitally turning my photos into works of art.  She has my permission to sell them and a part of the proceeds goes directly to my shelter!  We are discussing tee shirts too!  

How cool do these look....

You can find Painted Paws Pet Portraits on Facebook too!  We are trying to get a canvas company to either donate or give us a discounted rate for printing.  We want to hang some in the shelter's lobby.  It's a work in progress.  But I'm very excited.

AND...I ordered 4 Paw Project silicone bracelets.  Will be selling them for $2 to anyone interested.  All proceeds will go to the shelter.  They should be in next week or so.  I'll post a link on the side bar once I get it set up.

My only purpose was to help the animals at the shelter by taking better pictures, I never thought it would go this far.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Our Bull Workin' Kitty

Yep, that's right, we have a bull workin' kitty.  Miss Kitty to be exact.  Whenever we go out to round the bulls up in the arena or near the barn, she's always right there with us, ready to meow them into the pens!

She was waiting on the stock trailer last night just in case I needed some assistance.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Thank Ya!

I usually have an extremely hard time posting awards.  So if you've given me one in the past, please don't hate me if I never posted it.  I appreciate each and every one.  I just hate choosing others to give it to.  I think you all deserve an award.  Anyhow, I thought I would try doing this one.  It was bestowed upon me by the Dawson Cattle Company.  Thank you!  And the rules are as follows: thank the person that gave it to you (check), link back to their blog (check), reveal 7 things about myself (ugh!) and pass it along to others (alright, I'll force myself to pick).

Now I don't know that I have 7 things to reveal about myself.  Y'all know about everything there is to know about me!  Let's see....

1.  I dipped snuff when I was little.  My grandmother had a fit!  My mom knew I justed wanted to be like my older brothers and I wouldn't do it long.  She was right, it didn't last long.  

2.  I won a photo contest when I was in elementary school.  Took a picture of our old barn as the sun was coming up.  Then never really did much of anything else with photography until a few years ago.

3.  One of my favorite TV shows is Friday Night Lights.  I absolutely hate this is it's last season.  Booo!

4.  I applied to a PH.D program after I completed my degrees.  I was turned down, even though I had awesome recommendations, due to being too young and not having enough work experience at the time.  I never applied to another one.

5.  I tend to be very blunt.  Most days I am told "I can't believe you said that to him/her."

6.  I love accessories.  Even though I'm a t-shirt and blue jean kinda girl, I love necklaces, rings, earrings and bracelets!  I have a crapload!

7.  I'm actually an introvert.  I enjoy living out in the middle of nowhere.  I prefer to be by myself or with the Husband.  I don't like crowds.  I tend to become a wallflower.  Center of attention I am NOT.  Parties and gatherings with people I don't know real well gives me anxiety.  I don't make small talk very easily.  But I have gotten better the age.  

Wow, that took me awhile!  So now I'm gonna spread the love.  Go check out these blogs!

Okay, and everyone else on my blogroll.  You all deserve it!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Eye of the Tiger

Okay, so not a tiger.  It's Penelope's serious stare of determination!

I swear she had this look a few days ago.  I was crouched down taking pictures of Diesel.  All of a sudden something struck me from behind, knocked me over.  Penelope rolled over the top of me.  She has a tendency to fling her entire body at Diesel.  I guess she thought she would try it with me!  Of course she had been playing in the water beforehand so my backside was soaked.

Lesson learned: Don't forget about the puppy in the yard when squatting down to take pictures!

Monday, June 6, 2011

What's Causin' the Cows to Stare?

It would be this....

The Wife on a horse!!

This is for all my horsey blog peeps!
Y'all never see a horse on this blog.  We usually don't have one on the place.  Crazy, huh?!  Do y'all remember this horse?  Miss Priss.  I bought her as a colt.  She got caught up in some barbwire and cut her legs up pretty bad.  Cut the back leg tendon completely in half.  I doctored on her for quite awhile.  Then I couldn't find the time to deal with her so I decided I needed to send her to the best horse trainer around, my dad!  

Just brought her home last weekend.  I promised my dad I would ride her.  So this was my proof.

Don't expect to see the Husband on any horses.  
If I get him on her, I'll be SURE to take his picture.  It will be a miracle!