Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I'm baaa-aaack!

Well, sort of! I have a ton of work to do, so the projects and fun blogging have to hold for a day or so, but I just couldn't wait to share some good news!

I have a new dog! His name is Pogo and is a "rescue" of sorts. See, I filled out the application for National Mill Dog Rescue Network, knowing that I am a long shot because I do not have a fenced back yard. My mother has volunteered for them for over a year (might be shorter... I cannot remember!). I was lamenting the fact that breeders charge so much for their dogs and I didn't really want a show dog. I know I could have gone to the humane society, but you get no history with that kind of drop off. Mom told me about the possibility of getting an older dog with the NMDR, so I thought, what the heck... I'll give it a try!

Well, the lady who sets up the home checks had a personal dog that she felt needed a different environment. She is a computer geek (like me) and doesn't get out of the house much, and a Sheltie like Pogo needs lots of activity. She saw my application and figured she would gamble on giving me a quick picture and an email. I fell in love right away!

He came, he saw, he got along well with my other dog and he captured my kids' hearts! He even gets the thumbs up from the Hubby! He is a cuddler at night, entertains the kids in the am before school and seems to be doing really well in our home!

I just had to share a pic!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Wishcasting Wednesdays

Hmmmm.... What luxury do I wish for???

I don't know. I have the spanky new car... I live on a horse ranch... I eat regularly... A luxury?

Ok. Let's define luxury.
  • -great comfort: expensive high-quality surroundings, and the great comfort that they provide
  • - nonessential item: an item that is desirable but not essential, and often expensive or hard to get
  • - pleasurable self-indulgent activity: an activity that gives great pleasure, especially one only rarely indulged in

Hmmmm. That gives me no help.

A great comfort? I would love to have a new pup. I think I would find that comforting. And the price tag is rather large these days for one of those! The latest is a little boy Boston Terrier named Sterling for $1200. Hubby has no idea. He knows I may have found a pup, he DOES NOT KNOW HOW MUCH! So no telling him and getting his fur all fluffed up. I don't even know if I am ready for this adventure as yet... I think he would qualify as a luxury in those terms.

A non-essential item? How about a hot-tub? Oh wait! We have one! Hubby just hasn't made me a "FLAT-SPOT" to install it on! I guess that makes it a non-essential item, doesn't it? It is rapidly becoming a planter in our back yard! (Another one of those "free" items that you hope isn't going to become an eyesore... Ahem. Good luck with that!)

Pleasureable Self-Indulgent Activity? That is relatively easy... I would truly love to make it back to Jamaica for a week's vacation with the Man. We so seldom get to enjoy eachother, it truly feels luxurious when it happens...

I cannot cope without Sunshine!

Ah, yes... You guessed it! Winter is beginning to show it's grey bearded face around these parts! I don't know for how long, but it is enough to have me weepy and dreading the "hard" winter predicted in Colorado. There is an inconvenient truth in Colorado... We have only two seasons, cold and not cold. There will be no fall, no gently warming spring. There is only Cold and Not Cold. Furnace On, Furnace Off. Coat or No Coat. And so, in these darkening days, I struggle with the lack of Sunshine.

I think there are probably times I suffer with that S.A.D.-stuff. You know? The disorder that has to do with seasonal changes and the lack of sunny weather? I just can't stand it! I love the sunshine. Even more when it is missing from my part of the world. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, and all that jazz...

I just love sunsets and sunrises. I enjoy the feeling of sunshine on my face and despite the utter lack of tanning ability, I revel in summer clothes and summer-like destinations. Part of the reason that I so look forward to Hubby's trip the Vegas every February/March. It rejuvenates me!
I cannot live without sunshine!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Random observations to begin a week...

  • While looking on a website for a Boston Terrier breeder (just trying to figure out what I would get, if I get anything...), Jewell blessed the venture. The only Boston Terrier breeder in Colorado is called Juwell Boston Terriers... Coincidence? I think not!
  • I found some pictures of Hubby loading hay in the early morning light with the moon behind him... Bliss! (Grainy, but bliss!)
  • We got our first snow today... Yes, September 21st produced snow! Ugh! I am not ready... I was just getting used to summer.
  • Girl simply amazes me with her pragmatic view of middle school. I find that incredibly comforting!
  • At the end of this week I will be heading to Louisiana to see my sister. (No one spill the beans, she doesn't know and she doesn't read my blog!) The Mother-Unit and I are surprising her by attending her baby shower down south... I am so excited!
  • I am excited to have the kids be able to spend some time with their paternal gramma. She has a houseful of folks that live with her and thus she doesn't get overnights with the kids very often anymore. I am looking forward to them reconnecting with her while I am gone to LA...
  • I finished my birthday party invitation in under 2 hours! They are spectacular and I will post pics after I mail them out - I don't want to spoil the surprise for those who read my blogginess....
  • With the arrival of the snow we traipsed into town and purchased the seasons new winter coats. Despite that, I am still not ready. After, to buck the season's changes, we went to Souper Salad for dinner! I will go down fighting!!!

And it begins....

Hello there... Yes, I am back. Still a bit weepy, but back, none the less. Jewell would be proud of me for moving on as I am sure she scarcely looked back when the beauty of the light called her home.... OK. Won't go there.

The last I wrote, I was going to start a new project. I think I settled on "Things I simply cannot live without," or something of the sort. So today, I am starting that and hoping that I don't simply bore you all to tears! (And if I do, there is that thingy that helps you remove me from your follow list... I'll try not to cry about your departure!)

I cannot live without laughter. Really. I realize that I have been morose and rather detached lately. It isn't really who I am. I LOVE to laugh. Those big, gut wrenching, breath stealing, tears streaming down your face guffaws that leave you spent in a heap when you finally regain your senses. I revel in laughter like that!

Hubby loves to laugh as well. He finds Larry the Cable Guy hilarious. (me? not quite as much...) I laugh at Hubby when he gets to laughing at Larry because he is simply so caught up in the moment that he turns this lovely shade of crimson and cannot catch his breath from laughing so hard. That cracks me up! Unless of course this particular event happens while Hubby is listening to Sirius radio in the car and Larry comes on... That can be a dangerous ride! I do not laugh then!

I love to laugh with my kids... They are hilarious at times! Their humor can be timely, subtle, toilet in nature and silly. Hearing them laugh is the most joyous sound I can think to have tinkling around in my tympanic. Just last Saturday, after watching The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, my daughter commented that that was 2 hours she will never get back... Cracked me up!

Boy can be seriously hilarious in his own right as well. When he was a mere two years old, he stomped authoritatively into my bedroom one Sunday morning while Hubby and I were still lounging in bed, enjoying the morning together. With his blankie slung over his shoulder and his pillow under his arm he announced he was ready for me to get out of bed and get him his cereal, NOW! Startled as I was, Hubby jumped to my defense and instructed Boy to spit in one hand and hope for breakfast in the other and see which one filled up first with that attitude. Boy paused at the doorway to our bedroom (as he clearly figured his demands would be met with no resistance what so ever), looked incredulously over his shoulder at his father and snorted, "What-EVER!" I thought I would roll out of bed laughing! (After Boy left the room, of course, so as not to teach him to be disrespectful. Look at that! I hear you laughing already!!!!!)

I think laughter can make things that are hard easier. For example, my lovely and recently departed dog, Jewel gave me the opportunity to laugh just before her death with the photo below. She just always loved her pillows and slept in any way she found comfortable at the time. This picture will be treasured for the laughter it brings me in a time of melancholy and longing.

It is much the same with human-type-folks that have passed on as well. I love the traditions of honoring our dead with wakes and celebrations that allow us to tell stories of those gone on that often evoke laughter and smiles. It is in this way that I hope to be remembered myself. I want people to gather to remember my laughter, remember what made me laugh and how I made them laugh. I want to leave laughter along with love when I go.

What makes you laugh?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I am ready for a new project...

OK. I think we all know that I need something to distract me right now. Loosing a friend of 14 years makes one quite irrational and apt to make bad pet decisions. So in hopes of avoiding a disasterous adoption scenario involving rodents, too many cats or a hairless chihuahua, I am starting a new blog project....

I have things in my life that I am certain I cannot do without. It is a do or die world we live in and I am no exception, folks! I have a little list I intend to share of eleven items that make my world go round... Yeah, I know... eleven? Not very symmetrical is it? But that's me. Messy.

I've been trying to think of a clever name for the project.... Not very successful so far. Spud did something similar and with her coolio cameras did a spectacular job of it too! Don't expect that from me. Not worthy... :)

Thanks to all of you for being so very patient with me and my lack of posts these last few days... I am climbing out of the abyss. It does get incrementally better!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Its time... To let it go.

  • Let go of expectations that were never realistic anyway
  • Let go of the tears I have held back 'til now
  • Let go of the stress that is causing all those fun muscles in my neck to ball up and become unruly
  • Let go of baggage that was never mine to carry anyway
  • Let go with loud laughter at the Bubba cat... He can do that!
  • Let go of thinking I ever had any control of anything, ever
  • Let go of worrying where the next horse will come from
  • Let go and fly, fly, fly!

I hope that today, you too can let go! Know that I am right there with you!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

On the wings of angels...

She is gone. She came to me as a lovely round ball of fur with the teeniest of angelic wings... I loved her so dearly. She was mine and I was hers. I miss her so very much. Her quiet loveliness and her sighs as she lay on the floor near my bed are gone forever.

There just isn't anyway to say how much a friend like this means in my heart. She never judged me. She loved me unconditionally and she waited each day to walk with me, sit with me, live with me. To call her a pet seems so insulting. She was my friend. The truest kind of friend that simply cannot be matched in the human sphere. She loved my kids. She loved my other furry friends. She especially loved Hubby.

She didn't like large crowds, unless they were willing to throw the ball... Or the Frisbee... Or a rock, blade of grass or smallest of pebble... She was OCD that way. She did not like riding in the car. She loved the vet clinic. She was odd that way. All of the docs and vet techs who knew her loved her. She never bit anyone. Not even when she hurt. She just trusted her humans.

Loving her was easy. Letting her go is a tremendously difficult process.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Wishcasting Wednesdays: Deux

As seen here.... and here.... I just love an introspective challenge!

Today is Wishcasting Wednesday and I am asked, "What do I wish to learn?"

As we know from here, I love learning! And so does she... I think learning is the most incredible process and I am in awe of it every time I am allowed to watch it unfold in any situation. Learning is the basis of who we are, whether we recognize it, or not. We are learning every single moment of every day, and I love that! Bliss, as Christina would say!

I admire those who can distill their desire to learn down to one thing, even for just today... I am not quite that, ahem, distilled. (Unless you count the vodka - But no one counts the vodka, do they?) So my Wishcasting will come today in the form of a list.

  • I wish to learn to really forgive. Not just say I do, but forgive in my heart and not expect the offender to do it all over again and fear the Grudgy Greta temper tantrum.

  • I wish to learn to trust God with my provision. I do not do this well at all! I constantly try to figure out how to do it myself before I turn to God to allow Him to provide what I need. It always comes out better if I let Him do it... Wish I could learn to do that first.

  • I wish to learn more about writing and how to do that with eloquence and clarity. I absorb books as much as my schedule will allow and I read these wonderful blogs out there in the inter web. They are my largest inspiration. I find that awesome!

  • I wish to learn how to balance my incredible life schedule with all the desires I want to see come to fruition. I have a desire to do more, be more, give more... I only have so much time. I want to learn how to marry that to my schedule. Wouldn't that just change everything?

  • I wish to learn how to talk to my kids so that we can keep talking, even through those years that are traditionally difficult to get through. I want to be that mom that my children keep in the loop. That is so important to me! More than I can wrap words around...

What do you wish to learn today, tomorrow and for a lifetime?

Monday, September 7, 2009

I'd like some cheese with my whine...

  • When did my knee become one of those trick type? I am reticent to wear my excruciatingly cute heels knowing my knee is now "tricky"...
  • How did water suddenly become much more desirable than the sweet, sticky sodas I used to crave before I realized the high fructose corn syrups give me an asthma attack? It just tastes better.
  • At what point did life deal me that cruel card that looks suspiciously like the Old Maid? I don't feel like that wrinkled-y chick that keeps creeping into my mirror. She doesn't look at all like she could "bust a move!" (Maybe she'll just bust a knee?)
  • When is it safe to smack Hubby for being so damned crabby after I have waited two weeks to see his loveliness? Now? How about now? Wait... Now?
  • What happened to my sweet little girl and who the heck is the crab-fest that has shown up to replace her? Can I return the grump and trade in for a nice 3 year old? One without the attitude?
  • Did the same person who has abducted my Girl also take Boy who used to love me? I now have for my delight an eye-rolling, breath-huffing, foot-stomping rude-o. On order: one 6 year old with a penchant for skateboarding...
  • Who has snuck into my lovely home and left a disgusting smattering of dog hair, old homework and plastic grocery bags? Who does that kind of thing? Oh! The humanity!!!!

The view from a different office...

Once in a while I have to entertain the idea that I can be of help in the barn. Even with my asthma and allergies, I clean stalls to give our hired man a day off during the week when the crew is returning from a show. They are so beat down tired that they need to sleep a large portion of the next day which would put the hired man working without a day off and that simply isn't acceptable!

So... The Queen of Everything dons her barn attire and works from a different office, giving Trudy True Blue something to smile sweetly about.

Tools of the trade

The job's objective (ick)

Office mates to keep me company (Jewel is still with us!)

Duke, Rabbit Killer (Still holding a huge grudge...)

My client... And my new obsession with clouds.

Cleaning stalls gives me time to think... Maybe that's the reason I resist it so much. My over-analytical mind goes places it probably shouldn't. But truly, it stretches me. I do the physical part of the job almost without thinking (except for the blisters on my hands that are too used to indoor endeavors), but the mental issues that come with it are different.

I used to think that stall cleaning was a mindless, monotonous job. And I suppose, in some ways, it is. But if you have a mind like mine that likes to wander down rabbit trails, you can get a lot of that junk extra mental baggage out and onto the stall floor where it is swept up and into the bin for disposal. I get much of my aggression out and dealt with then... I also get that small still voice bull-horn voice of God telling me things I need to clean out of my wagon. Clarity. And not always in a good way.

All in all, I enjoyed my day yesterday... I left the barn tired, sore, blistered and covered in little red welts from feeding hay, but it was a good day. I think sometimes boiling life down to the simplest measure clears out the junk and allows us to breathe.

I am breathing today.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Bucket List Item #20: Contentment

Contentment. It means different things to different people. For some it means wealth. For others it means freedom. Still others find contentment in things. For me? Well, I am still working that out. And so, my last Bucket List Item....

I want to find contentment in my life and its amazing circumstances, varied as they are.

For me contentment doesn't look like anything in particular. It actually is a state of being. I have felt contentment on many occasions. I still do. I want that "feeling" to actually become a part of who I am. I want contentment to become a moniker that hangs around my neck and bleeds out around me, calming my world and spreading happiness and daisies - Oh, wait! I went a little wonky there...

I would like to have the presence of mind to realize when I am choosing discontent, rather than contentment. I do believe that it is a life choice, not something that lands on you like fairy dust. I have many of the same beliefs about love. I think choosing to behave in a certain manner is what makes us different from so many other life forms. We can choose to love past the passionate emotions, we can choose to forgive in dastardly circumstances, we can choose to remain calm during a disaster... I want to gain the habit of choosing contentment.

I want to look at my life, hectic as it is, and choose to view it in a state of contentment. Content that I have a home, content that I have food in the pantry, content that I have a beautiful and healthy family. I have so much to be thankful for, I just desire to choose contentment as my response.

So often I don't choose that response. So often I choose ambition, discontent, complaining. Not how I want to be remembered and not how I want my children to react to their world.

I could blame that response on my nationality: Americans tend toward discontent often, due in large part to that pesky "American Dream". I could blame it on my life circumstances and the choices I have made to this point... But mostly, I simply want to change those habits. I know I can. It is mine to choose.

I want to choose to be content with my life and all the wonderful blessings it holds!

* * * * * *

That's my little Bucket List of desires... What are yours? I'd love to read them!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Bucket List Item #19: Chinese Pug

chinese pug  - VoxEfxImage by √oхέƒx™ via Flickr

In lieu of all that is happening with Jewel, this almost feels like a betrayal... But it was on my list and I really do want to see it happen. Just not at the expense of my long time friend. I am sure she would understand, being the generous soul that she is...

I love little scrunched up, smooshed faces. The sweet sound of snoring that isn't Hubby's. The softness of their muzzles. The character in their little bug eyes.

When I was a kid, my mom had a Chinese pug we called Maxine. (Now that name brings to mind the grouchy cartoon lady...) She was just the most incredible dog. I loved her and she was funny and snorty and the most loving ball of fatness! We had to move and one night, in the process, she got lost. (I have absolutely no idea how, as I was pretty young.) Heartbreak ensued, but there simply was nothing that could be done about it. Years later and at least two moves later, Maxine showed back up at our door! Snorty and excited and completely responding to her name like she had never left! It was amazing! (Mom, if this is not how it went and there is something you feel you should tell me - DON'T! I want to live thinking this was how it went! LOL!)

Since then, I have wanted one of these amazing dogs. I want to experience what it is like to have a "lap" dog. We always have dogs, but they are larger breeds for working on the ranch. Aussies, Border Collies, and yes - Corgi's. I love my dogs. They have been incredible companions and they are so smart and helpful in what we do. But they are not allowed on the couch and they are not interested in sitting in my lap and getting loves. In fact, if you try to pick Miss Kitty up (she is our Pembroke Welsh Corgi), she will break into her impression of a Tasmanian Devil and threaten to tear your arm off... Not exactly cuddly!

Hubby is vehemently against this idea. Mostly, I am sure, because he doesn't want the dog to end up a pancake on the barn floor from being underfoot. Horses move fairly fast and that can be a detriment for a fat little pug-lette. Still, I want one.

I want a Chinese Pug puppy.
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Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Wishcasting Wednesdays

Read about this on the Fragrant Muse's blog... I just love you Liz! You inspire me to think outside my own little box and keep stretching!

Wishcasting for Sept 3... What do I wish to begin?

I wish to begin the healing process with a dead relationship. I am struggling over this. I want the person to be sorry. I want them to feel bad about what they did. They don't. But God is asking me to forgive and to heal.

I wish to begin my garden. (September is either really late for beginning this, or very early - I choose to think of it as early!)

I wish to begin really writing. Every day. Wait... I'm doing that!

I wish to begin gathering items to bring to my new niece... Isn't that a fun prospect?

I wish to begin inventing a machine that gives us all just a little more time! I know I would buy two!

Bucket List Item #18: Be published

I really enjoy what I do here. I dream. I kvetch. I make known my hopes for the future. And I guess, if you really wanted to, you could say that blogging is a form of being "published." I like that. I get to say what I want, and then sometimes I say something that someone else wants to know about. Very alluring to the Queen of Everything, don't you think?

I would like to hone this hobby, though. Make it mean something bigger. Don't know why. Really, that isn't the point is it - of blogging, that is? Blogging is simply saying what you want in a sort of "out loud" way that is very non-threatening. I don't have to receive rejection letters from someone saying they aren't interested, or that my skill is lacking. I can put it out there, comments or no, and I get to leave it there on the "page".

But we all know I cannot stop there.

I have counseled Girl about her writing. When she was once weeping in her bed about being the "weird girl", she and I had a conversation about dreams and what they might look like when they are first born and what it takes to get them to a grown up state. She was concerned about starting middle school and not being able to shuck the public opinion that she was odd. I tried to tell her being odd was actually a good thing. She simply rolled her eyes at me. Then I explained that I was odd... More eye rolling. But when I also explained that in order to fit in, I gave up some pretty important dreams I had, like writing books, her eyes actually quit bobbing about in her head and fixed on me. When she saw that I chucked my oddness for popularity that I never really found comfort in, she started really listening. (I relished it for a moment, knowing it cannot last...)

I hope that she realized that what I was saying was not that it wasn't difficult to be odd. It is. Horribly so. But it can be invaluable when you have big dreams. It means that you don't give up. It means that you are willing to look a little nutty in front of others in order to see that dream to fruition. It means you are willing to fail. Willing to fail over and over, until you succeed.

I was that weird girl too, my darling. I was that kid who just didn't fit in all the way. I still am. I still struggle to keep my head in the game and not check out when things get really hard to deal with. I squeeze my round-self into all kinds of square holes to make ends meet. That is what growing up teaches you. That is the burden of responsibility. But after all that squishing and squeezing, I also allow myself the ability to dream.

I dream of someday writing something that someone wants to publish into a for-real book. I am not a story teller, per se, but I do have stories to tell. I fear my skills as a wordsmith are terribly lacking. I often find my writing cumbersome and choppy, wandering down paths that are undeniably difficult to follow. I am sure some classes could help that... When I have time... (Would have been so much easier to have honed this dream than try to fit in where I really didn't belong!)

I hope that I can impress on my daughter to follow her dreams all the way to the end. To exhaust her desires until it becomes plain that there is another path she should take. I hope that if, by my blogging, she can see me pursue being the "weird-girl" she will find strength in her uniqueness, not a lack of confidence. That is my largest desire for her. My Girl with the big dreams of being a writer.

I want to be published. (excuse me, while I hit that "Publish Post" button! :) )

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Bucket List Item #17: Have a garden

Railroad ties? check! Desire? Check! Dirt? um... hold on... Flowers? wait a sec... Checking... Vegetables? Doggone it! Stop that!

Yeah... I have this wild dream that someday, not too far in the future, I hope, I will have a garden. I do have the railroad ties that I want to delineate the boundaries of this wonderland that has eluded me for so many years. They are sitting in a pile in the turnabout on the north end of the house. A heap, really. Sitting there since Hubby, irritated with my ability to schedule his days off for him, chucked them off the back of the truck and stalked off to pout over losing hours of relaxation on the couch. They are, of course, way too heavy for me to move from there. After the reaction I got when we went to cart home these treasures, I have not had the courage to ask him to help me move them into place.

I have called about purchasing topsoil. It is a mere $12/ton. Very affordable. But then there is the loading it into the truck at the rock yard and getting it home and unloading it into the beds...

Have you met the Procrastinatrix? Yeah... She is very alive and well in this little Item! But I will not be denied! If it is the last thing I do this season, I will at least get the ties moved into place so that I can get a good start on the beds next year.

I want to have a garden.
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