In a huge hurry

Met a new friend scurrying down my drive way.  Don’t worry.  I gathered my little friend up and moved him to safety.​  As a child, I remember my Mom telling me these little Woolie worms could predict the severity of the weather based on their color.  Can’t remember exactly, if it was black or orange that meant a bad winter.  Maybe it is silly to stop my car to move a little fuzzy caterpillar, but – hey, GOD made caterpillars too – and besides, it is healing to stop and visit with nature for a little while.  The grief is always with me, but moments like this strengthen me.  Does anyone know what kind of little critter this is??

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Guilty, hasty, ouchy

You ever have days you just can’t win?  At the last minute, I needed to take my husband to the doctor.  I had to call work and let them know I would be late.  Then, I felt guilty about leaving my work team hanging – I am old-school dependable.  I am ol’ reliable, at work 20 minutes early.   But not today.

My husband kept apologizing for needing me to drive, no matter how much I assured him it was OK.  “I love you.  I want to drive you.  We are a team.”  Then I felt guilty for making him feel guilty.

When I got him back home safe and sound, I felt guilty that I had to make haste and rush out the door to work – no time to throw the ball for Charlie dog or rub a puppy belly.  They both looked so sad!!

That is my vicious circle.  When I am at home, I feel guilty for missing work.  When I am at work (two jobs), I feel guilty for neglecting home and farm chores.  When I carve out ME time to ride my red mare, I still criticize myself for the To Do List I haven’t finished and the floors I didn’t mop.  Then, I work myself into a silly state and get in a huge hurry.  What does that accomplish?

I hurried by the gas station and slammed my finger in the car door.  How dumb was that?  So now I feel guilty, hasty, and ouchy!  Why do I do this to myself?

But, I am still going riding tomorrow!!

Listen,Listen

As I blogged in the past, there are many casualties of grief.  Horseback riding was one – for me.  In the last months, I have tried to get my saddle time.  While it has been good to be back on a horse – we weren’t a team – not connecting.  My mare would hollow out, jig, toss her head – not good.  My ride last weekend jarred my back – and seriously had me thinking about giving it all away.  I have been riding for nearly 50 years – I can’t quit like this.

So, I prayed.  “God, please – I don’t know what to do.  Help me.  What is wrong with this hateful red, mare.”

The only word that kept popping in my thoughts – Listen

Well, God, I am listening – that’s why I am praying – tell me!!

Listen

AAARGHGHH!!

Listen.

OK, thanks to my loving Spirit Sister, we changed the tack – maybe the saddle was pinching?

Still, nagging voice – Listen.

This morning, after a sleepless night – I hauled my horse to the near by park.  That voice was hounding me – Listen!!

AAARHHHGGH!!  The anger, the frustration – what does that mean????

I just broke down, hanging on my horse’s neck – sobbing.  I hugged her head and pleaded, “Tonka, I am so broken-hearted.  Please, Tonka, I need you.”

This time, I understood the voice – Listen to the horse.  I looked into her eyes and knew that I put too much in the saddle.  I don’t mean just my extra chubby butt.  I mean I took all my pain, grief, sadness, darkness, rage, and frustration riding with me – I piled all that onto Tonka’s back.  As I clung to her neck, I asked her to forgive me.  I promised her today, it would be just my chubby butt (again, I apologized for the chubby part). No more emotional junk.  I felt her lean into me and sigh.  

Today, was the best ride in 31 months!  Today, Tonka and I connected.  When a horse and rider connect, it is beautiful, powerful – it is spiritual. 

I believe the Great Spirit blew HIS breath into the nostrils of the horse – he gave them life so they could held guide us.  In the woods today, surrounded by creation and truly connected with my beloved mare – I know GOD was there and my prayers were heard.  I am so thankful.

After a 3 hour ride, I smothered Tonka with kisses and scratches and stuffed her full of apples.  She was so relaxed, I could feel her relief.  Finally –  I listened!!!

Bathroom Organization

Bit of an odd topic for me – maybe the title should be “another bad idea”.

Let me explain, I am not a neat freak, my house is clean-ish.  I try, truly I do.  But farm chores come first.  Of course, I vacuum and mop daily – I have a German Shepherd.  Dishes and counter tops get the daily scrubbing – dust and clutter, I can overlook.

So I came up with a genius idea.  I will put all my daily bathroom toiletries in this little basket.  Everything will be nice and tidy versus sprawled all over the counter.  Then, I simply pickup the basket to wipe down the vanity.  Problem, when the age spot fade cream tube is the same color as the toothpaste tube – AAAAAHHH – I threw away my toothbrush and my breath is NOT minty fresh.  Maybe the fade cream will remove coffee stains from my chompers??

OK, maybe I need to rethink my storage.  But, this is not my worst idea – not by a long shot.  There was the time I didn’t want to take time to go to the hair salon so I decided I could cut my own hair – how hard could it be??  That was my hat phase.  Oh, then there was the time I super glued my bare foot to the floor – I may never live that one down.

I need more coffee.

I am a Horse-a-chondriac 

The upcoming solar eclipse is an exciting event – but I cannot help but worry about my horses and outdoor pets.  Is that silly?  Should I be concerned?

I can keep my house dogs in the house, I will just shut the dog door.

I think Gertie Goose is nearly blind already, so no worries for her.  I think Flip Flop Kitty will be OK.

But what about my red mares?  I know they are little stinkers, but they are my little stinkers and I love them.

This time, Charlie WAS a working dog

We desperately needed the rain here in Virginia, and I was glad to see it.  But, after every storm there are fences to be checked, branches and debris to cleanup.  This is when Charlie dons his working harness and pulls a small wagon.  He sits anxiously awaiting my call:  “Let’s go to work”!!  We walk the fence line together.  I gather up the fallen limbs while he hauls the little wagon.  He is a huge help.IMG_4035

Of course, after a  hard day at work, there is nothing like an afternoon nap.  Notice the “Farm Dog” collar?  Well earned, fine Charlie, well earned – a label of love and honor!!  I couldn’t make it without you!!  God Bless Farm Dogs!!!

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Working like a dog?

Thanks to the miracle of coffee, I dragged my ragged, worn carcass out of bed this morning to do farm chores and then head off to work.  My husband sleepily praised me “Honey, you work like a dog!”   Hmmm!  Really?  I am heading off to muck stalls and Charlie is sleeping late.  But look at that sweet face!!!IMG_4096