Journaling

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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.  

Sunday, February 19, 2017

A donkey I love

I have been visiting a donkey who is at a rescue, I call him Hugh. Tomorrow he will be gelded and after a waiting period I hope to be bringing him home. The plan is for him to eventually bond with Little Bit since we lost pony and Bit is missing someone closer to his size.

I have really fallen for Hugh, he is very cuddly and sweet and I think he knows that I want to be his new Donkey mom. While visiting Hugh yesterday I had my first experience with a mean rooster, I got a scratch on my leg and learned not to turn my back on him. Hugh did chase him off once I went into where he was and I was really happy about that.

I also enjoyed the company of two potbelly pigs and a couple of really sweet goats. Below is a picture I took while Hugh was wondering why I was holding my phone instead of him.


Saturday, February 18, 2017

Where my life is now

It's been months since my last post, there have been many changes in my life and more coming this year. We lost pony a couple of months ago to a tumor in his intestines. He was fine one morning, ate his breakfast and I heard a noise coming from the barn in the early afternoon and thought I should check it out, I found him in a full blown colic.

The day was spent with the vet with no changes, next was taking Pony to the vet's hospital for overnight care. I got a call late in the evening that things had taken a turn for the worst so I called a friend and we went and got pony and took him to an emergency equine surgery facility.

When we arrived it was determined that surgery was the only option and he had an 80 percent chance of surviving. Pony was prepped for surgery, I loved on him and he was put under, five  minutes into the surgery it was determined there was a large tumor and it was located where the small intestines joined the large, his chances of survival was now determined to be 20% and that he may never fully recover. I made the decision to stop the surgery and let Pony die in peace.

No one dreamed at the beginning of that long day that the outcome would not be a positive one. I had Pony for 15 years, Little Bit my miniature horse was devastated, they were very closely bonded. At the beginning of the year I had decided I was going to buy a farm I had found not far from Spencer, I wanted all my horses to have a final resting place together, fortunately Pony was small enough that creationism was an option. We will all still move together in the spring but not the way I had wanted it to be.  

I felt guilty selling the house I live in now because dad had bought it for me before he passed away. I decided that instead of selling this house that I would use it for something that would benefit others. I am going to rent it to my step son and his family so his two little daughters will have a home to grow up in and make memories. Eventually he will buy the property when it is possible but in the meantime the children will have a nice home, yard, barn and school district.

My daughter Kylie started college and shortly after decided to move out on her own. I am not completely thrilled about how she did it but it was time for her to try and live her own life. I have been a mother for so many years and because I was a single mom the idea of having time to take care of myself has been the biggest adjustment for me but it has been a good one.

My diabetes is managed with diet and so far I have done really well but I know in the spring I need to loose weight and I need to quit smoking before winter. I feel old sometimes but I am slowly starting to feel better and have more energy because I have something to look forward to.

Little Bit grieved for more than a week but is doing okay now. The herd is out of balance now with just three so I have found a rescued donkey I hope to adopt soon. I have always wanted a donkey, getting one will certainly shake things up around here.

All of the animals are getting older but they all seem to be holding their own. My hope with the new farm that has a small arena that I will finally after all these years be able to ride Cody and spend time with him before he gets much older.

My work has gone very well although I was laid off for two weeks at the beginning of the year. I am learning new things and I am feeling secure for now in my job.

The past few years have been very difficult, I didn't think it would ever let up but I think things are slowly getting better and I am much less stressed over money and financial problems. I am hopeful that this year is going to be good, my brother may be retiring and when he does he will come live with me. The new place has a stocked pond, I know he will be in heaven as he loves to fish.

I never got over losing the farm a few years back, my heart has longed for it ever since we had to leave it. I know I will never truly be happy until I have another farm again. The one I am buying is the last place I will ever live and I want to grow old and have my ashes scattered there. Until I am too old I plan on enjoying every moment and every square foot of the place.

I have a great deal to be thankful for and I still maintain that God has been with me every step of the way. I am very tired of the winter days though and am anticipating longer days of sunlight and the warmth of summertime.

I hope to start blogging again on the new farm, I don't know if the adventures will be as exciting as the ones on the old farm but it will be fun to try. I want to start with a couple of pictures of where I'll be moving and will add more as things unfold.



Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Back to normal sort of

It's been quiet, that is good. I have had time to think about things and here my own thoughts. I need to take better care of myself and I am trying to focus on feeling better, losing weight and taking another stab at quitting smoking.

It's rained almost every day so my momentum on outside work has slowed down. Everything here is green and beautiful but grown up. It in a way is like starting all over again. Another place to cut back and clean up and bring to life. Things are disorganized and it will take time to get it all in order.

Many of the things I used to cherish are gone or still packed away. I haven't had the same heart about things in a long time. The past few years have just been so unsettled I just can't seem to feel very secure but it is getting better.

I have gotten a couple of calls this week on boarding horses, people still refer or someone finds information on the internet, always about boarding a senior horse. I think about how difficult it was and how time consuming it became and know that with working full time it would be to hard. Still, if I had a boarding barn that generated enough income I probably would do it again but I'd be more careful about boarders. You have to set boundaries and stick to them.

I felt more alive being outside and working in a barn and with animals then anything I have ever done but I will never put someone else's responsibility before my own family again. People don't care and they will take advantage if they can, not all but most. So, in doing the right thing and caring you have to be prepared for the treatment you will get and weight whether or not it's worth it.

I still have dreams but I am also cautious because as Scarlet O'Hara once said "As God is my witness, I'll never be hungry again!". Nor will my animals or my daughter.

On a funny note, I have three dogs, one is a golden retriever named Daniel, next is Micah a Collie/Sheppard mix, and then there is Cooper a Sheltie. Cooper steals food, if the other dogs are eating their kibble he will eat as fast as he can and then try and snipe the other dogs food out of their bowls. I got tired of guarding and watching Cooper so I take his food to the bathroom and shut the door. The other dogs eat in peace and don't inhale their food when Cooper is in another room.

Once everyone is done and walked a way from their bowls I let Cooper out. Micah and Cooper are not super fond of each other, it isn't a complete dislike but they are both herding dogs and a little more high strung. I usually walk up to the bathroom door to let Cooper out but since the door isn't closed shut completely I will ask one of the other dogs to nudge it open sometimes. Daniel will do it immediately when asked and happily since I gave him a command and he loves to please. Micah, on the other hand looked at me the first time I asked him to do it and walked away. Now Micah knows what the command means, he's opened doors before but he chose to walk away instead.

The second time I asked Micah to open the door for Cooper he touched the door with his nose, looked up at me and then walked away again. He touched the door enough to move it ever so slightly but not enough to let Cooper out, Daniel ended up finishing the job. I had to laugh at Micah, it was all so deliberate. I wonder if Cooper would open the door for Micah? 

Friday, April 29, 2016

Back to my regular life

Yesterday it was all about spring rain. The place has greened up and because there are woods and a creek by the house there is plenty of wildlife activity. I watched the tenacity of tiny birds chasing other much larger birds away from their nests. The barn eaves are full of nests of these tiny birds. The little ones were little black moving specs compared to the enormous birds they were chasing. There was a smaller raptor and even a buzzard that endured the wrath of these little homemakers. One large bird in particular got chased half way across the big corn field behind us before the smaller bird was satisfied. Imagine the bravery, the sheer nerve of pursuing and performing an in flight  flogging of something many times your size. Go little birds!

I have yet to see the wild turkeys. Last year when we moved here there were several adult females with what looked like 20 or so tiny baby turkeys wandering all over our road and in the woods and in our driveway until they grew to maturity and then disappeared in early fall. On my road you must break for Amish buggies and baby turkeys!

All the animals in my little collection are doing well. Danial is now a senior dog, he is still full of life but the signs of aging are present. He doesn't see or hear so well, he has lots of bumps, a could of tumors and a whiter face. Micah is still young but a much more mature acting dog. Cooper is just Cooper but he doesn't fear people anymore, he is so much happier than when we first got him but he still gets into everything gross so we have our moments.

Nana the Cockatoo and I have bonded a great deal the past 6 month. We have an evening ritual that she will no allow me to skip. She must be swaddled and held for a time on my lap every evening around six o'clock. Loki is more trusting and has come a long way, it has only taken him 5 or 6 years!

The horses are all much happier because they can get out every day and they have each other and a pasture all their own. Cody is more energetic since I switched him to a feed with a little more carbs, he has also filled out and rounded out better. Little bit is getting older and wants to come in when Cody does, Pony is doing good and still lets Aubrey have it when he is tired of being chased. Aubrey is huge, he is beautiful and a little high strung. I love them all and it pleases me to see them happy and safe and together.

We have one cat left from our first house years ago, Tiger Lilly. She has to put up with the cats that were left here by the elderly lady that lived here before. She had to go into a living arrangement where she couldn't take her six cats. They live in the garage and she comes every evening to feed them and clean up after them. Tiger Lilly must be about 14 years old but she is doing okay. The other cats have a lot of personality between them and although there are too many they are safe and won't ever be homeless.

The house is not that old but is in need of major updating cosmetically. I haven't had a moment to really organize or get things under control outside since we moved here. It is because of working full time and a lot of extra hours. Eventually things will get righted, until then oh well I will live to enjoy the beauty outside and all of my little charges.  

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Faith

I have been agonizing over something since my dad passed away, literally from the day he passed away. Why? because from the first day my family has been obsessed with their inheritance. I loved my dad, we had a very strained relationship all of my life except for the last two years. But.... those two years made up for a lifetime of distance between us. If anyone would have said that dad and I would have had the kind of relationship we managed to have at the end say as recently as three years ago I would have said it would never be possible.

The change came down to two things, dad thought he had kidney cancer and was becoming aware of his frailty at 80 years old and that before we could have a real relationship we needed to clear the air and I expected him to take responsibility for abandoning me as a child. I confronted dad about God and his relationship with God and what God expects us to do as parents and also that he was running out of time. I carefully wrote a letter to my dad, I spelled it all out. That letter changed things and from that point on we started building a relationship. It wasn't me that brought about the change in dad, it was God.

My dad took what I said to heart, he pondered and he didn't doubt my sincerity. I pray and thank God for my dad taking the last two years of his life and doing good things and reconnecting with God. So many people pass away and never have a chance to make things right or better and many have the chance but don't take it. Dad's ability to change with God's help speaks volumes to who he really was.

I have already received a precious gift, more precious than dad's money, I had a dad. I waited for 50  years but I got one. I have the memories, approval, love and understanding of an earthly dad. No one can take this precious gift from me and with six other brother's and sisters I am the only one who bonded with dad this closely. Dad tried harder than they know to deepen his relationship with some of them but I don't think they understood that time was running out and that he had no ulterior motives.

But now we come to the inheritance of tangible things, money. Dad had a huge portfolio of stocks, all of which my siblings have insisted on liquidating immediately. I am the only one who wanted to inherit stocks. It has been agonizing for me because of the pressure from other family members, the disrespect the fights. I myself couldn't understand why it was so important to me to keep the stocks, that is until today. I didn't have the fear of the stock market or the worry of what if I loose a lot of money. The reason why I didn't fear is because I have learned to rely on God. The past 6 years for me financially has been horrible. We lost the farm I loved, God provided a new home, I got laid off for over a year, we ended up moving again into a house my dad bought etc.  

I have walked in faith, by human standards I should have been living out of my car a couple of times and I should have lost all these animals years ago. We have gone hungry, utilities turned off and yes evictions but here I am and we are all safe. When you live like it could all be over in a matter of a day and that hangs over you for awhile you either crumble or you learn to rely on God. He has never let me down, I can remember Him providing for me hour by hour and it was like a series of small miracles one right after the other.

So, today I realized that I wasn't driven by fear, that whatever my inheritance was I had already put it in God's hands. I don't have to sit and obsess over money, I am not driven by fear or greed. If I lost it all in the stock market it was only a backup anyway because God has carried me this far without it and His love and provision is enough.

Everything as far as I know has been sold though, because of fear and greed. That pretty much covers my family except they all had to raise themselves to a degree, they have learned to rely on themselves, control is security to them. There is no discussion of faith, I have never heard one of them even consider faith and letting go. The scariest thing to them I think is not having control and being vulnerable. This puts a huge distance between us.

Like many families when a parent dies there is things you learn about your family that is not so nice. I've seen somethings that have been very hurtful and at the same time sad. I am left with stepping out of the situation entirely for my own sake. I don't want to experience anymore hurt, I want to be able to grieve for my dad in peace. I also don't want to be in a place in my life where fear and greed are my mainstays.

It took me a while to understand myself but I get it now, I learned to live by Faith more and to worry less about the stock market and the things that no one has control over. It sounds foolish to people who don't get it but once again I am so blessed. Besides having an earthly dad I also have had a Heavenly Father, He has been with me all of my life.


Monday, April 25, 2016

Family Scapegoats

I didn't know there was such a thing until my dad passed away and I found myself in the middle of 7 siblings and an estate. Turns out that it is a common occurrence in families especially after a parent passes and their is money involved.

I have been insulted, bullied, and harassed because I wanted to my portion of inheritance in stocks instead of liquidating dad's entire stock portfolio into cash. We have a great estate attorney and he to is in disbelief that the entire portfolio will be liquidated.

It seems that money is more important than common sense, relationships and fairness. Again, this is very common. The scapegoat position however is the most difficult, you are alone and the target of other family members. My difficulty with this is that I really bonded with my dad the past year, I knew him and became closer to him than any of my siblings.

I really miss my dad, I haven't been able to grieve for him until I decided a few days ago to cut ties with the rest of the family for awhile and maybe even permanently. They have worked hard to repeat things about my dad that should have never been said or passed around the family. The biggest thing is they don't get that I loved dad very much and I am truly hurting.

It is sad to say that two of my siblings really give the impression that they have waited a very long time for dad to die and to get their inheritance. It may not be true but in conversations and actions it certainly leaves me with that impression.

I was very blessed, I did get an inheritance that no one else did, I got a dad finally. After years of a very strained relationship with lots of hurt and disappointment he turned it around and I was open to it. My siblings even think he had ulterior motives thinking he would need someone to take care of him. Dad didn't want to be taken care of, he knew the day may come but he truly had a bucket list and he wanted to know me.

My dad did really know me in the end, he made the effort and was sincere. I saw inside of him, someone that had a lot of hurt too and we bonded. My dad and I laughed together, debated and he allowed me to help him with things he really needed.

I really believe God brought it about, I would never believed 5 years ago that I would have bonded with my dad so closely. In orchestrating the healing of the relationship God gave me the opportunity for healing some very deep wounds and he gave dad a chance to do somethings that made him feel good. We were both so very blessed. I am so sad that it couldn't have lasted a little longer, I would have given all of dad's money to have just a little more time.

I guess I am not upset about cutting ties with my siblings right now, I am relieved. Since the day dad died it has been nothing except about money, I decided that before everything was turned negatively and to let the hurt continue I just have walked away. I can now grieve and at the same time treasure my times with dad.

I literally got physically ill with every phone call, it isn't worth it to me. I stepped back into my little farm life, I am there for Kylie. I walk outside and enjoy the beauty of the morning, the contentment of the horses in the pasture, the peace at night when the dogs are sleeping and I thank God for it all. All I have to offer my siblings now is prayers, silent prayers to a merciful God who I love and is with me always.