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Used to run a stable and live on a farm, now I am back into banking for awhile. Still have horses and love animals.  

Monday, December 25, 2017

Sweet faces

A Christmas Tradition

Three dogs and three toys but only one Golden Retriever. Every year I wrap dog toys and put them under the tree and the dogs will not touch them even though they can see and smell them and KNOW they are dog toys until I tell them it's okay to take them.

It is the same every year, Mica and Cooper know that Daniel my Golden will take all three toys and they let him. Daniel will be in dog toy heaven for days trying to carry all three in his mouth and playing favorites with each toy at different times.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Coming full circle

21 years ago I bought a horse and named him Cody and in the beginning I spent every day with him and we had a very special bond. Life happened and being a single parent I didn't have the time to spend with him and sometimes I felt very guilty.

I held on to him anyway and I have looked at this face looking in at me when I clean his stall for the better part of 20 years. Looking back at the rough times and even if I couldn't spend time with him that he was taken good care of, had his herd and was never in the hands of someone that would hurt him or be sold at an auction.

I have waited a long time to be able to be with him and feel the deep connection we once had and finally it isn't a dream or a hope any longer but a reality.

Since I haven't ridden in a long time I struggle with the saddle and the bridle and my riding seat but Cody is patient with me, he just quietly waits for me to get the tack right and tolerates my poor seat. Slowly it is all coming back including the memories, I was young and he was young and in the beginning we learned new things together and we had fun. I am old and he is old but now it is a calmer thing between us.

I know Cody loves me, I can feel it when he is near me and when he nuzzles me when I am letting him out of his stall. I know that when I take him out now to ride or exercise that he feels maybe as I do that it has been a long wait.

I searched for the right saddle for us for awhile and I found one that is light weight compared to our old saddle but just as comfortable. I rode in it tonight and felt deep in the saddle like I used to, the feeling I had forgotten about. When I exercised Cody first I didn't speak to him, he read my body language and knew what I wanted without words. I took time to listen to him in the way he moved and make him feel good.

We rode tonight, we rode a little like it used to be when it was just Cody and me and the quiet of the evening. I was so full of joy and Cody was just mellow and happy to have his hay afterwards. I wanted him to know how happy he had made me, I hugged him and he ate. I walked from the barn to the house, tears in my eyes because I felt I had found something precious that was lost for a long time. There are tears in my eyes now from the love and joy that I feel.

I don't know how many years Cody and I will have left together, I only know that time is precious and we must enjoy every moment together. We are older but there is that glimmer of the past peaking through when I was young and determined and Cody was young and unsure. There is a warm ember of that special bond still glowing and with a little coaxing it will burn again brightly. 

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Humbly thankful

After loosing the farm in Granger I tried to get over it and forget it but I couldn't, it took me years to realize that I would never stop wanting a farm. I looked for a long time for a place even before I was able to buy another farm and one just sort of came out of nowhere.

I bought a farm in February and let the sellers stay till the school year was up, I moved in this month. The interesting thing was that I am deep into Amish country now and have many Amish neighbors. I have one really good Amish neighbor who just happened to be a carpenter. The place is perfect except the barn where the stalls are was in very bad condition, my neighbor fenced the place in for me and built new stalls, the work is impeccable and affordable.

The house is completely remodeled and has geothermal, there is 10 acres with a small arena. I never looked for a property with a pond but this one has that to and it is a large one. The pond is spring fed and has a giant bass in that was hand fed and his name is Lenny. I also have 3 geese.

I had special mats installed in the new stalls that are stabilizing and have a base of limestone, everything drains and stays dry no matter what.   I also had skylights put in over each stall, there is always natural light in the barn and a little hill for the horse to go up and down and woods for them to go into to stay cool during hot days.

I have another neighbor that sells 1000lb round bales very cheaply that lives on the corner of the gravel road that is my road. Buggies travel down my road more than cars, the Amish waive when they see me.

While in the middle of the new construction and the process of moving my brother had his brain surgery for Parkensens and it was a success, he stayed with me during his recovery. My step son and his family are now living in my old house hoping to buy it some day and are 7 miles from here.

My daughter Kylie is out on her own but seems to be struggling, the only troubling thing going on right now. I am sad for her but at the same time frustrated as she wants to do things the hard way.

The horses made the move okay and the parrots and the dogs, I took four cats with me and we may have lost one, the older one who we have been nursing for a few months. The other two cats are both males and are at the old house, Moe one of them may end up here anyway.

There are woods here with older bigger trees, the land is beautiful and I can see it all from an upstairs sunroom and from the sunroom downstairs as well. I have brush hogged the land that the grass had grown up and am slowly working on the weeds, there are apple and pair trees with fruit on them.

I have mixed feelings right now, it all seems to good to be true, I feel unworthy but at the same time I feel I have finally found home, where I belong, part of things I should be part of. The quiet, simple beauty is overwhelming after so many years of struggling and never seeing an end.

I thank God for everything and at the same time I am still in awe of everything around me and how it came to  be. It is hard to settle down and just accept this gift, this blessing, to sit back and think that God has seen me through and delivered me so many times and now has brought me to this place.

It was important to me to have a final place to live out my life, to bury my horses somewhere that I would remain. It is also important that I am able to help my step children and my daughter and my brother. God has made all of it possible. I think that eventually I will feel at ease with everything but for now I feel wonder and amazement.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Pulling back

I have taken the last week to pull back and withdraw from interaction with friends on the internet. I have made myself have quieter evenings without so much computer and phone activity and I have tried to go to bed earlier.

Towards the end of the week I was exhausted from work as I have a very analytical job that gives me decision fatigue. I can get very burn out depending on how demanding the week is on my mind. I went to bed earlier and even though I did not sleep right away I benefited from the dark and quiet of lying in my bed and just trying to relax.

Another aspect of what I am trying to accomplish is to have a quieter mind and mouth, I am working hard to try and not swear as much and also to stop thinking so negatively. Getting to know my biological family and ancestors I see patterns of both negative thinking and expressing thoughts negatively or too sarcastically.

Things sometimes are not apparent until you take a step back without anyone around and  you start looking inward. I have had difficulty with reversing negativity because it is easy to fall into but the swearing is not so difficult.

I am working on getting estimates for the new flooring for this house and at the same time some things that will have to be done on the new property. There is so much to get done and prepare things for Dusty and his family to move in here and to be able to move in June with all of my animals. There are things to consider for Uncle Greg who will move in after he retires.

Now the nice weather has come the people I am trying to make things happen for seem to have disappeared, I am struggling with this but as I have told others, never do a kindness expecting a reward or anything in return, I now have to practice what I preach.

My daughter I have not heard from in at least two weeks, I had the flu and was very sick with a high fever and asked her to stop by because I was considering going to the hospital but she wouldn't come. Mind you I gave her money just before I got sick and so presto disappearo. I know it is her age and phase partially but that does not make it less hurtful to me.

In the end, I look around at the beauty outside, all of my wonderful animals and having a good job, I realize how blessed I am and it is time for some inner reflection. When I feel alone facing things and dealing with things they seem to workout and in ways that I know God is behind them. I do get tired of being strong and having to make many decisions regarding two properties but I guess I will get through it.

The next week I will continue to work on my thinking and feeling while I have solitude to do so. I have chores to do in the evening now that daylight is longer that relieve some of the anxiety my job brings on. I have been able to complete specific things that need to be done here one little project at a time but there is much more to go.

I had a very good day yesterday as I spent time in the morning on the new farm and the Amish neighbor who is a carpenter. The pond is crystal clear because it is spring fed, the fish come up to the surface so you can see them, there is a duck that has chosen to live there who is very handsome, the trees are filling out so that I can see how they look now that spring has come. I met some neighbors who are really nice.

It is a much quieter place than here, yesterday the neighbors shoot guns off for hours here and the other neighbors who have a lot of outdoor recreational vehicles race around all day. At the new place there will be few cars, mostly buggies and neighbors who are not as close and are very low profile.

My Daniel though has had a bad time with the weather snap from very warm to cold, he is getting to the age where he probably has arthritis and a deteriorating disk in his neck. I have ordered something to make it easier to get onto the couch, I have also started giving him joint supplements. Daniel is a huge dog, it will be difficult at times to make him comfortable and all of this is old age, he still thinks he can run and jump but then he hurts himself. This makes me sad to see as I know it will get worse over time, the blessing is though that I can spend time with him because I work from home, time is precious with pets because they don't live as long as we do.

Daniel will be my last Golden, he has a very pure heart and no matter how painful it is he will follow me and he will not rest unless I am within sight. If I am sick he will not leave my side for anything. We have a deep bond and he will be my last Golden, I love my other dogs, I will always have dogs and save lives but Daniel is my heart.

It is another blessing that after all these years I can make Daniel more comfortable, I can give him more time when he needs me. It was not always so and I am grateful these things are possible. 

Friday, March 31, 2017

Hugh and Bit

I miss Pony terribly, I always will and Bit was lost without him. Hugh had to heal but almost immediately he was accepted by all the horses but what he means to Bit is much more. They were stalled next to each other for about three weeks, finally I let them out together and Bit is much better now. Hugh and Bit have bonded and it seems to have helped them both, it has restored balance in the herd and given me peace about Bit, it hurt me to see him so lost.

Little Sassy Massey

There are many days that I still miss the farm we had, I miss the old oak trees, the barns and Big Red. I bought a giant tractor at an auction for the farm, I never owned a tractor and I got spoiled because it could do jobs that were difficult or impossible to do by hand. I am not materialistic but I did love that tractor. I have been searching for a tractor for a couple of months, a smaller one with four wheel drive and bucket. I found one in Wooster, I paid a lot more for it than my Big Red because I didn't buy it at an auction but I did okay on the price.

With the help of Dusty and his horse trailer we got it home last weekend. It is a small Massey Ferguson, diesel, four wheel drive with front end loader and ag tires like Big Red. It is older but in excellent condition and is enough to move round bales of hay around and gravel. I hope to get an old manure spreader soon which will really be helpful.

The tractor sat in the barn for a couple of days, I eyed suspiciously as I did chores and finally when the neighbors weren't out and I felt confident I started it up and drove it. I had been really nervous about driving Big Red since I'd never had a tractor before and that tractor was bigger than my pickup truck but after being forced to drive it I was over being scared real quick. Same with this tractor, it took about 10 minutes of fooling around on it and I felt right at home.

Driving it made me feel better, somehow just being able to do things with it like I did on the farm seemed to have a healing affect. I hope when I move to the new farm that I will also feel healing, I've been homesick for the farm since I had to leave it but I didn't realize it until the past few months. Things happen and you accept them and keep going but it doesn't mean it doesn't break your heart. It isn't about things, for me it was a dream and knowing that the land and being close to it is in every fiber of my being.

I did not lose the animals though and that is what I am grateful for everyday. I managed to keep them and keep a roof over Kylie's head, it took a lot out of me, it was hard and I felt broken for awhile. If it were not for God I am not sure I would have made it mentally or emotionally intact, honestly.

So, new beginnings and a new life maybe. I not only have a grown daughter but now a son and his wife and children, Dusty has shared his family with me and we all love the land, they've helped me and worked along side of me, the children will grow up with their horses and mine and a donkey and a tractor and soon a big pond. The new place has a spring fed pond, woods, and a small arena.

My brother loves to fish, I know he'll enjoy the pond when he retires. I pray that there will be no more hard times for awhile, no more loss and sadness for awhile. I want to believe that there will be happy times, precious memories to make, peace and love and sanctuary.

I still work many hours at my job and every moment that I don't is precious to me, I try and enjoy every living thing here and the land when I am able. I still thank God that I can walk to the barn at night and feed the horses and brush and pet them, they are home and God willing they will be for as long as they live. I also thank God that I am able to work from home, I work regular hours and many hours over but I am always near what I love.

The new tractor is not a Big Red but it is red and it is sassy.