As I hung up the halters and the lead ropes, I realized how much I love everything about horses - even to the point of dusty halters and curry combs rattling around in the car for days before I take the time to put everything away. If only I could still ride! Those days are gone but I can tend to horses and see them every single day. I am so lucky, so grateful for the horses.
|Ginger the Supreme Being, and Walai Lama|
I also feed and shelter two dogs - Jakey the Bad Dog and Mattie the Maniac. I was on a waiting list for a German Shepherd puppy from an Oklahoma breeder for almost two years. I was confident that the pup would be smart and beautiful and she is. She is smart as a whip, as that old saying goes. The first six months have been a little bit rocky for both of us. She is expressive and talkative and incredibly high energy. She goes from zero to 180 miles per hour in an instant and oh brother! She is fine when we are here at home alone. Company is so exciting for her that she goes off the charts. I think she will eventually be a very well-behaved dog but it requires a serious and sustained commitment from me. She needs a lot more socialization around other people and other dogs. There have been days that I honestly thought I made a huge mistake investing in such an expensive and crazy dog. We are figuring out how to communicate now and she tries so hard. She is almost seven months old and already taller than Jake. It is imperative that she become a well-behaved dog before she turns into the Hound of Baskerville!
|Jake the Bad Dog|
|Mattie, just before these sweet little girls handed her over for the last time.|
Sometimes I take my home for granted. Sometimes I fall into the habit of only worrying about all the work I can no longer do myself - trimming back brush and tree limbs from the fences, continually picking up branches of all sizes that fall from the veritable forest around here, landscaping around the house or cleaning the gutters. It begins to feel like a burden to live here. Invariably the Kansas winds come calling, rising and falling like the waves on the shore, striking some certain chords in my spirit that call up something I cannot even name - a longing for something almost remembered, something wonderful and clear. Perhaps it is simply the memories of all those days growing up around my grandparents - all those long golden hours spent outdoors, in the moment of childhood, before the suffering of life began in earnest. The winds conjure something immediate and golden in my spirit and I close my eyes in deepest appreciation for the mighty blessings of living a life on this earth, for the lives of my children, for the people I love, and the life I have managed to build for myself here in the bend of the nameless little prairie creek. I am grateful for the memories that come borne on the wind. I am grateful for the tiny little slice of silence where I found a place to build a home. It is not a burden to live here.
|Sunset from the front porch.|