Beautiful Souls

Animals. They never cease to amaze me. I know I probably sound like a broken record at this point, but I do not care. I have no doubt in my mind that they are all gifts to us. Angels in their own right, sent here and given to us for a specific reason and purpose. Even if only for a short period of time in our eyes.

I think Mr. Dirty Toes Merle might just have one of the most beautiful souls out there. He wants to be a friend to everyone and he does not give up until he gets just that. I have watched it with my own eyes.

Just look have a look for yourself.

Merle and my Lito man
Merle and Petunia

He has finally started to win a few of the heifers over. I was taking care of some chores in the barn when I looked over and saw MUTUAL LICKING. Never have I seen any of our dogs do this. Not even my Darcy.

Merle and Blaze
Merle with Billy and Blaze
Merle with Bendita and Blaze

Now if only I could capture his antics with the cat……..

Love.

God is love. Never forget it.

Walk in love, dear readers.

“And love will run to meet me and call me his own”
“So love can live to tell the tale”

Remember Me?

Yoohoo. Hi. Over here.

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Ya. Remember me?

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Yes, me. Your long lost friend. Hi, ya. I have missed y’all!

How is it May? And how has it been two weeks since I have written you? Not sure how that quite happened. It was not intentional, that is for dang sure. I have not fallen off the face of the earth. Maybe you wish I had! Anyway, it is not for lack of goings ons. 

There has just been a lot of life going on over here in my world. Now is not the time for that though.

Not to worry and they say worrying is fruitless anyhow (spoiler alert, it is true). God has it all and me. And you. This I know with great conviction. He has been ever present throughout it all and is still here.

I will do my best to get back to writing to y’all regularly, but in the meantime, enjoy some photos of the past couple of weeks.

Life and time go on, man. It is how you use it. How you live it. How you share it. AHAmoment. Taking each and every day to be better than you were the day before. Letting God work through you for the blessings of others.

Walk in love, dear readers!

Work trips are not all that bad.

But being at the farm is better. Especially to catch the moon setting in the morning.

I do, I love you.

Getting our steps in.

Boop.

Magic.

Easter eve yoga for the Darcy dog.

A new view.

Easter morning sunrise.

Tuners with all the words to say.

Cooking is always a good idea. It is good for the soul. Roasted red pepper soup from scratch. Pretty dang good.

Until next time…which will be soon! I am spending the weekend with some of my best friends riding horses here in the great state! Even if it rains, it will be a grand time!

 

What Just Happend

That is more of a rhetorical question because nothing really happened, but still. It feels like a time warp of sorts and I am not sure if I am happy about it or not. How odd.

Anyway. The first thing. How is it already Wednesday? Yesterday was the Monday-est Tuesday ever being the Tuesday after Memorial Day weekend (which was great, by the way). It drug on and on and now here we are at Wednesday. It is like I feel duped. Yet another odd feeling! We are already half way to the weekend again!

You know what else has snuck up all of a sudden (or is it sneaked? Ugh, grammar is hard, man)? Summer. Like triple digit, humid town, reminiscent of 2011, SUMMER. I heard on the news that the next few weeks are going to be like the summer of 2011 (I sure hope he said next few weeks and not this whole summer!). I am almost shaking in my boots. Seriously.

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The summer of 2011, as anyone from down here knows, was brutal. I think we broke the record for triple digit days. Given how humid it is here, that is a hard thing to do. Oh and the bugs. So so bad. And practically no rain while being in the worst of the drought. That was the summer I graduated from undergrad and brought Cheetah home. She would have run all the way back if she could have I think. Every time I saw her she looked at me with an expression like, “GET ME OUT OF HERE, TAKE ME BACK, WHAT HAVE YOU DONE!” It is a good thing I had a lot of time. I went to the farm practically three times a week and she would gallop up to me each time I drove up to get hosed down and scrubbed. I did not even need a halter. We would stand under the shade of one of the oak trees as I ran the cold hose over and over her.

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Anyway. I can not think about that anymore.

Speaking of Memorial Day weekend, it was great. It started off with a dinner show by Radney Foster, at one of my favorite places, with some of my favorite people R, H, and M.

I have been a Foster fan for basically my whole life, but surprisingly, I have never seen him live. He surely did not disappoint.

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Playing new and old songs, sharing stories, and reading excerpts of pieces he has written. I did not want it to end. I could have sat there all night and listened. I ended up buying his book when the show was over and I can not wait to read it. If you have never heard of him, you should really go check him out. His work transcends all boundaries. I have so many favorite songs of his, we could be here for a week, so here is a new one he played that I can not get enough of. He just gets IT. For you to really see the light, you have to know the dark. AHAmoment.


“It’s gotta get dark enough
For you to see the stars”
~Radney Foster


I woke up early Saturday morning in a daze and Darcy and I booked it to the farm to meet my parents and cousins who arrived there Friday evening. Listening to Radney Foster the whole way, of course.

I had another one of those great compliment weekends I told you about before multiple times over. Girls and horses (and Petunia) and it was great. I am so proud of both girls and horses. R even rode both Cheetah and Chance bareback. There is just something about girls and horses. The horses, they just know what is expected of them when it comes down to it.

It was really hot and we were thankful for the moving cloud coverage. The horses were sweating in the shade! An unwelcome promise of more heat to come.

I do not have any more words for you, dear readers.

Other than to say I am overwhelmed with gratefulness for the blessing. For the family, the horses, and the music.

And. Of course. Walk in love!

I am going to go sit on my hands now so I do not post every one of Radney’s songs. Go listen now!

Blessings

I hope each and every one of you and yours had a very merry and happy Christmas.

I will say basically the same thing as I did last year because the same is true today.


May the many blessings of our Lord shower upon you. Peace, love, and joy. Keep the Christmas spirit alive all year long.


Despite having a bad head cold, I had a very merry Christmas myself. Lots of family. Lots of cooking and eating. Laughter and joy. Togetherness and fellowship. I did not want it to end.

The weather ended up not being as bad as predicted which is great for me. Makes my life a whole lot simpler to not have to run back and forth from the farm during a busy holiday.

I made a quick trip out to the farm the Saturday before Christmas to see everyone and feed. Unfortunately for me and probably everyone else, I did not have time to ride, but even just seeing them is worth it.

Real life ’round here for ranch horses. Mud and hay on our faces and in our hair. And a barn full of muck. Thanks, guys.

Hey, hi. How are ya? They sure make it hard to get a photo when they are all up in your business.

Also real life…holes in our hay nets.

Didn’t get enough horse muzzles in your face? Me either.

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How about a donkey muzzle?

Because everyone loves a gaggle of babies…

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Remember the whole mud in our hair bit? Ya. Worst part is, I did not do a single thing about it. It looks like this season’s latest updo trend.

The minute I got back to town, the cooking and festivities began. Middle Sister K and Bro-in-law T got in Saturday afternoon. The three of us had dinner with my parents and then went off to bed.

Christmas Eve I made an apple cranberry pie with a pecan shortbread crust. Lawd. Go make this now. Worth every bit of effort. Seriously. I have made this several times before and each time I am blown away. In fact, I made it for thanksgiving last year. Anyway, we all went to the kid Christmas Eve service at church and then came back to Oldest Sister A’s house to exchange gifts and have dinner with family and friends.

So, so good. The pie and the evening.

Then Christmas morning I woke up early to make this pomegranate cake for our big Christmas Day lunch with my Mom’s side of the family. This is another one I have made several times. I guess I am going to have to shake things up for next year and do something different, but they are so good!

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Sadly, Middle Sister K and Husband T had to go back home early Christmas Day. No rest for the weary. I do not even want to write this because I know K is reading, but we all hung out together until dinner time.

The day after Christmas, I did my most favorite thing to do after Christmas. Go to the farm, duh. I know what you are thinking. “Man, I sure wish I had another horse muzzle in my face.”

Your wish, my command.

Boop.

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I do what I can just for you.

It was cold and raining. The ground was slick and by the looks of the barn, the horses have not been out much. Another barn full of muck. Yay.

So, no riding for me again. Slightly fair weathered of me? Yes, but I am also coughing up a lung every few minutes, so I thought it best not to get cold and wet. And it was my Sunday and had major post holiday blues. And nobody has been ridden in a few weeks between the weather and holiday festivities.

Excuses? Maybe. Probably. Who is this person?

Anyway.

Is it me, or has Lito grown MORE?

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Even when he is wet he is cute.

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So you know how I showed you Cheetah’s mane tangled with clumped mud and confessed to not doing anything about it? Well, I still didn’t do anything about it. But, who cares, just listen to them eat hay. She doesn’t mind her mane.

I have always found the week between Christmas and New Year odd. Maybe odd is the wrong word. It is very slow. Things get quiet and not much is going on. It is a very reflective time for many, and I am no different.
I reflect on the real reason for the season and my many blessings. How I can keep hold of the joy of the season, the feeling.
I reflect on the past year. What has happened, changed, or stayed the same. The good, the bad, the ugly.
I think about what the next year will bring. What His plan is for me. The desires of my heart. What I want to change.
So I will be over here, reflecting and postulating. Tap tap. Anyone still there?
Walk in love, dear readers!

Daily Dose Of Cute

This overcast Monday needs something to brighten it up. To add to the Christmas cheer. Do you know what I mean? Well, I have that for you here! Look no further. Well, to the end of this post if you know what is good for you.

This morning was one of those stay in bed until the last possible second kind of mornings. Such a Monday. Always coming in the spoil the party.

But you know what? Christmas is in a week! One week! The Monday before Christmas should be great! So, therefore, I say it is. Great! Forget that I temporarily forgot that this morning. I am only human.

So, here is your cute…

Cheetah enjoying her hay Friday night. Have you ever listed to horses eat. It is the best noise.

Her ears are my favorite. My Pops once called her ‘muley’ looking (from a photo) because of them. Rude. They suite her perfectly and give away her Thoroughbred half. And you want to know what else? Lito has her ears.

Remember this?

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I make no apologies for sharing this again and again. It is just too cute for words. AND THOSE EARS!

He grew into them and they suite him perfectly too.

Anyway, Friday night bed time barn check. Getting in some quality time with my sleepy Lito man.

He sure is all grown up and stuff.

Saturday I did my usual run around to the multiple feed stores I have to frequent this time of year. Christmas Eve night and really Christmas day are supposed to get really cold. I wanted to make sure I was stocked up with everything I need so I do not have to deal with that during the Christmas festivities.

This is the face of a sad Pentunia being tied up while I unload all the hay. Clearly perturbed to not partake in the all you can eat hay trailer.

Here is the really cute part. We had a new calf. A big heifer.

A cute little (Or not so little. There must me something in the water) thing she is. My vote is to keep her. Let her grow up and make babies with those big bones. I love showing up to a new calf.

I also make no apologies for liking this song. I am who I am, OK. I do not even know what it is exactly that I do like about it.

I mean, yes, it is Frank Sinatra. He is great. It is just such a cheery jingle that I can  not help but just sing along and smile. And laugh. BELLS! I had not even heard it until this year, and on the radio no less.

So there you have it.

Go get your Christmas cheer smile on, y’all. It’ll make someone else smile.

Walk in love, dear readers!

The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year

As it happens, I am surprised yet again to be at the start of a new month. I comment all the time on how fast time goes by. You can count on it. Is anyone else surprised to already be in December???

Anyway. We are in the most wonderful time of the year! I actually am not a fan of that song, so I am not going to share it. I have never really heard a version that I did not want to skip. But that is not the point. The point is, I have something for you. Two things really.

To help get you in the spirit of The Spirit, I have arranged a series of my favorite Christmas songs to be posted on the AHAmoments Facebook page all month long (you can click the link above or on the ‘f’ Facebook icon on the right side panel of your screen). You know how I love to share music. Do yourself the favor and check back in over there and have a listen.

Now for today.

To bring a smile to your face and attempt to give you a slow moment in time on this first day of December…your daily dose of cute. Put something yummy in your coffee and have a scroll. I put some hot chocolate, cinnamon, and nutmeg in my coffee today. It was worth it. It will make you sparkle on the inside. Like a Christmas tree. Ha, just kidding. A little. It will at least make you sparkle like these cuties.

Fight those bah-humbugs! They can affect more than just you.

Today I am grateful that I am more in the spirit than I was last year. Not much else has changed, and that is OK for now.

What has helped you get into the spirit??? What are you grateful for this year?

Walk in love, dear readers!

Monday Wisdom

Psst. The Monday work day is over, so here is a little something for you. A little funny and a little cute. 

Monday wisdom from the world of Petunia, as I see it. 

Petunia is the wisest and smartest donkey. She has me trained, clearly. 

Here she is. Playing a good game of ‘Where’s Petunia.’ Unassuming. Or so she wants people to think. 


Calling to me like a beacon. Her ears as radars. Sure, I’ll just walk out there. I have fed everyone else. Heaven forbid she go without. 

“No need to come in at feeding time. The girl will come to you and bring you the little, measly offering of a single alfalfa cube that she calls dinner.”


“Be cute and act like you do not need the offering. Stand there picking and choosing from the all you can eat buffet. Then, when she finally gets there, arm stretched out and reaching for you…


steal the alfalfa cube and take off galloping and bucking to the barn.”

Petunia, the wise one. 

Find the humor in all things. 

Stay the course and know that humans are not the top species. 

Enjoy the sunset on your way back and do not tell the men when they get back from the deer stand. 

The end! I hope you had a chuckle at my expense!!

Walk in love, dear readers!

Chasing

4 AM is about as pleasant of a time to wake up as any, right??? Right!

It would have been better to wake up that early to ride or go fishing or something as opposed to catching a flight for work. Darcy sure did not understand why we were getting up so early two days in a row or why she was then supposed to go back to sleep or why she was not going with me. I did not understand that either because how much better would work and meetings and traveling be with your dog!? But, I digress.

Monday and Tuesday were quite the days.

Two meetings, two cities, two states, three pat downs, four flights, and eight…count them all…eight Uber rides in just two days. That is a lot of travel miles and hours. I am getting tired again just thinking about it.

Yesterday had me chasing the sunset so hard that I was literally running away from the sunrise.

But, no matter how fast or how far you run, the sun will always catch up with you. AHA moment.

Might as well slow down and enjoy it, right? See and actually take in all of that which is around you.

Over the past two days I saw many things. I saw joy and unity in some because of the fine sport of baseball. I heard a girl wonder aloud to her mother if her father loved her or not. How he must love her because he bought her things. The mother did not have much to say. I got told by an Uber driver that I should have a husband. I met a nice stranger and had a lovely conversation. He reminded me of someone back home. I traveled safely.

So, yesterday morning I enjoyed my slow and delayed sunrise while flying west (well, northwest to be specific, but you get the idea) and thanked the Lord for my many blessings.


I never did see the sun actually come up!

We made our decent and landed in this lovely, cloudy scene…


Anyway, as you can imagine, I was ready for this when I was on my way home yesterday.


That and the sunrise back in Texas.

Speaking of sunrise…It is somehow the end of Wednesday. Crazy.

Trust me, this is a speaking of which.

This past weekend we had two stunning, chilly (like frost chilly!) sunrises. I spent time basking in the sun. Took many, many photos…as you will soon see. Had the first pit fires of the season. Tackled a few things on the chore list. I rode both of my getting-fuzzier-by-the-day dun horses bareback. Just relaxing, quality time rides. Focusing on nothing really in particular. Just enjoying. Feeling their warmth. A nice change of pace from being constantly on the move before our trip.

A little video with Friday’s pit fire, Lito’s Saturday ride, and Saturday’s pit fire. Make sure you have the volume up! Basically sums up the weekend. ​

 

 


Saturday sunrise.


You can always catch this guy taking a nap after breakfast. I get lucky when he is not in his dam’s stall.


Saturday’s sunset.

Sunday sunrise reflection on the western sky. The steam rising off the pond while the cows have their first big graze of the day.


I can have a second breakfast, right?


Snug as a bug in his rug.


Sunday sunrise.


Feeding the cows Sunday morning in the golden light and frosty air.

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More basking in the sun! Nothing like the sun on your back on a chilly morning.

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Back to real riding work this weekend!

What is going on in your world? What have you seen and taken in around you this week?

I hope each and every one of you are having a fine week so far!

Walk in love, dear readers!

All Is Well


All is well that ends well.

Isn’t that what they say? Who, I don’t know, but people do! My mamma does. And it is true.

Some people also say…


Everything will be OK in the end. If it’s not OK, it’s not the end. 

That one actually comes from John Lennon. Also true.

Speaking of John Lennon…not my usual musical style. Stop spreading the hate, y’all. Everywhere I turn, from all sides, that is what I see. And this isn’t even about politics.

That is all.

Oh, and these…To keep it positive and happy and full of love. Y’all.

The cutest two on the earth. 

This one. He’s got game.

My cousin came out for a quick 12 hours. We fit a ride in before she had to leave. Great weather, great company, and great horses.

I watched a friend’s dogs this weekend. Beau and Petunia loved each other.

And, well, you know I wouldn’t let you go without the sunset…


Too much? Again, sorry not sorry!

Walk in love, dear readers, and have a great Monday!

 

 

Monday…

…just like any other Monday?

Wrong. It is one that was not promised. I bet that changed your Monday blues.

Make the most of it, dear readers, and make it a great one.

Dare I say, make it a marvelous Monday!

Shine your light and spread the love! Get all hippie-dippie. Go on. You know you want to.

I had a lovely, restorative weekend at the farm (I even took a nap! Gasp, I know), capped by an amazing dinner with family last night. Seriously, that meal. Fresh caught red fish on the half shell topped with hollandaise and fresh crab meat served with green chili rice and green beans. We ate like kings. However, the meal was nothing compared to quality time spent with my niece and nephew. Love those little people!







I hope everyone had a great weekend and is getting their week off to a great start.

I for one am glad to be back in the swing. Bring it on! I have missed y’all!

Enjoy this piece by Ben Haggard.

What did you do this weekend?

Walk in love.