14

We Had our First Baby!

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Miss Ellie my favorite cow gave us a beautiful suprise this morning. Boo was at school but will get to see her this afternoon. Owl clapped and said “Our baby! Baby cow mama! Yay!”. Little Bunny smiled and pointed and clapped.

If everyone could witness the innocence and beauty of a newborn life I think the world would be a different place. I am blessed to be able to raise my three girls on the HK Bar knowing about the magic of life, the beauty of nature, and knowing Gods way.

10

Losing People Skills?

For those of you that don’t know me, I am a number of things. I used to be a full time nurse until I had my last two daughters 10.5 months apart and my husband and I felt I was called to be home raising our girls. I am also a horseman and very enthusiastic entrepreneur of anything equine, except track racing. ( I think the horses bred in so many great numbers just to be thrown away just because they don’t run fast is shameful.) I am also a lapsed Catholic whom recently rejoined the church. I am a wife to an amazing man who is tough, loving, and a bona fide workaholic.

So for the past 16 months I have been a sahm (stay at home mom) to our three daughters Boo, 5 ,Owl, 2 , and Bunny 1. I work occasionally as a nurse to keep up my liscence and skills. But my day to day interactions have been with slobbering, chest beating, little humans that often speak in one word conversations. Some days the only adult interaction I have is with the bank teller at the drive thru bank. Am I complaining? No, just stating facts. I love being home with my girls.

That being said, sometimes I feel like I am losing my interpersonal and communication skills. The past two months I have been picking up an average of four nursing shifts a week. I’ve been finding it necessary to have articulate adult conversations that don’t involve me explaining why the sky is blue, or why you should not stick peas up your nose, or why you shouldn’t put a chair on top of the fridge and then attempt to stand on it. (Yes, I’m serious. Story for another day).

I find myself stumbling over words and not being very eloquent in my speaking. I find myself wondering if the age old saying if you don’t use it you lose it is ringing true!? Have I been around little people too long? Have I lost the ability to carry on a normal sensible conversation that doesn’t require pointing and grunting?

Well, another nursing shift is calling so I better end this thought here. Cheers to being amongst people, finding my eloquence, and once again finding my voice.

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A Catholic nurse, wife, mother, horseman’s Lent Journey

Am I a particularly religious person? I talk to God daily, sometimes its the nurse in me that pleads “God please help my patient find peace and comfort.”  Sometimes its the wife in me that pleads, “God please give me patience with my husband, and please give him guidance and understanding.” Sometimes its the mother in me that pleads, “God please give me strength and courage to be the mother I need to be for my girls.” And sometimes its the horseman in me that pleads, “please give my horse steady feet and a willing heart.”

Lent is about remembering Christ’s suffering, death and resurrection. It is a time we celebrate the struggle and renewal.  When I was a kid I always gave up something for the forty days of Lent. Pop, candy, etc. As an adult instead of giving something up I am going to give something.

As I said above I find myself praying often, but I’m always asking for things.

This Lent I will give.

As a nurse I will give my all for the people I care for. I will go the extra mile.

As a wife I will be the spouse I wish my husband to be.

As a mother I will be patient and in the moment with my children

As a horseman I will be dedicated and committed.

And as a Catholic I will thank God for all that I am blessed with.

I am committed to this journey. I will struggle, I will suffer, but at the end of this 40 day journey called Lent I will resurrect into a better version of myself.

From the HK Bar to the world What’s Your Journey?

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Stolen Moments

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Owl

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Bunny

I’ve worked swing shift all week. My house is a disaster. Little Horse Company is keeping me busy. So many commitments and deadlines to meet. The littles and I are waiting for Boo to get out of preschool. These are some of my favorite moments. In the midst of all these busy days I have stolen moments with my girls. Laughing, playing, or just being together.

This is what life is about no matter how busy I am. I am so thankful for moments of connection with my girls amongst running, planning, fixing and all the doing of life. 

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Our girl Jo

I was raised riding sale barn horses, off the track race horses, and  back yard breeding accidents. Aside from my very first horse, an 18 year old + thoroughbred named Cracker Jack, I hadn’t ridden a well trained horse…..until a year ago when I bought my mare Jo. It sounds strange to people I’m sure to hear me say I haven’t ridden well broke horses in my 20 + years of riding. But its completely true.

I remember like it was yesterday the day my best friend, Amber, and her grandma (my adopted grandma) Sherry and myself met Jo. I had been scouting sale ads for weeks looking for my next partner. Amber found her, I believe it was on craigslist. She sent me a text with a picture of a big grey aqha mare. Seeing her in person made me believe in love at first sight. She was beautiful! She had great confirmation, an intelligent eye, and her movements were like silk. Her previous owner whom I’ll call A rode her beautifully. I could tell they had a strong bond, and fluid communication.

A worked her from walk to trot to canter, loped circles, performed a sliding stop, and spun circles left and right. I could tell A loved this horse, she was very quiet and even. She handed me Jo’s reigns when I asked if I could ride her. A of course handed the reigns over, but I could tell it was hard for her to do. In that moment I saw longing and hurt in her eyes as she looked on with Jos reigns in my hands. She loved this horse to her core, and I couldn’t bring myself to ask her why she was selling her.

I climbed into a beautiful trail saddle and set off on a walk with the big grey mare. I knew the moment my rear hit the saddle that Jo was coming home to the HK Bar. I slowly worked up to cantering circles. Jo was a beautiful mover, and what was this? She worked off of leg pressure? She side passed? She spun? Flying lead changes? I have to admit, I was sloppy in the saddle, and Jo got a bit annoyed with me. For the first time in my life I felt the feel of a well trained horse.

How could I have ridden 20. + years and not ridden a horse as well broke as this?! I’ll tell you why, its because I was raised by a single mother whom struggled to support my horse habit. I rode whatever we could afford. And another reason was because my (adopted) Grandma Sherry was a horse visionary with a penchant and soft place in her heart for off the track thoroughbreds. I was raised riding horses that sometimes only knew how to bite the bit and run like hell.

After a short ride I offered A a few hundred dollars less than what she was asking. As I look back now I feel guilty and ashamed for even trying to get A to lower her price on Jo. I knew she was worth well more than what she was asking. I said I’d love to have Jo, and went to my truck to count out crisp hundred dollar bills.

Amber, Grandma, and I left the stable with smiles on our faces. All we could talk about over our lunch of Mexican food and margaritas was what a horse Jo was. We celebrated that day.

Amber mentioned A was going through a divorce. I don’t know if A told Amber this outright or not. Amber has a canny sense of people and her surroundings. She is very intuitive. I admire that about her. But as she made this statement I found myself doubling over with a stabbing pain in my gut. I now understood the sadness and longing look in A’s eyes when she saw me with our Jo.

Yes, even now I say “our Jo” . Even though A knows Jo as “Jalo”. She will forever be our girl because I know how much A still loves this horse. I have kept in contact with her through texts over the past year. I send pictures and updates of our girl to A.

I want A to know how much our girl is loved. I want her to know our girl is cared for, protected, and cherished.

Every horse that I have had the privilege of riding has touched my life in some way, and has taught me something. I will always remember Jo as the first well broke horse I have ever ridden. I will always remember her as my dream horse come true.

I thank A for sharing our girl with me. For allowing me to part of Jos life. I know a part of A’s heart left with Jo when I took our girl home.  I want A to know how much she has touched my life through our girl.

From the HK Bar to the world, may you one day be blessed to ride a well broke horse…..even if it takes 20 years…..

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Jo and I on the day of her homecoming to the HK Bar

5

V Day on the HK Bar

We started our day with a bath…..yes a bath….all four of us in a tub full of bubbles. Owl and Bunny are struggling with the side effects of teething. Both have serious runny noses and low grade fevers. But both continue to smile.

Then around midmorning we were surprised by my Granny and my Mom. They brought heart shaped sandwiches for lunch and pink fingernail polish. Wow what a treat! So all  four generations sat around the table painting our nails, laughing ,talking, and making memories. What a great day!

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Granny, Bunny, and Mimi

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Boo, Granny, Bunny

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The teething duo Owl, me and Bunny

After a great lunch of heart sandwiches, the littles laid down for a nap. My Granny told me she was going to sit with them so I could go to the horse barn. Wow what a gift!

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Jo

So my best girl Jo and I went for a great workout for about an hour.

When I came inside my Granny had folded four loads of laundry!!! She was down to one load of socks when I came in. So we sat together for nearly an hour mating socks and visiting. 

Boo went to Grandmas to spend the night and the littles and I are going to order pizza for supper. Husband should be home to join us. He is working today.

My day has been filled with lots of love on this Valentines Day. I am so blessed to have all three of my girls, my mom and my granny.

Valentines Day at the HK has been one to remember.

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Boo, mama,Owl, Bunny

From the HK Bar to the world, may the love and spirit of Valentines Day touch you in some way.