To The Dr. We Went


Jo this am

Jo and I journeyed to the vet this morning bright and early. Jo was given a thorough exam including sonogram by the Doc.

Just as I had noticed her being sore on her left flank, he confirmed her muscle is thickened in that area. He suspects a deep tissue injury and a very sore muscle. Sonogram also revealed she had a large corpus luteum on her left ovary, but no cyst noted.

So the prescription to getting  Jo back to her usual self is a dose of antiinflammatory twice a day for seven days and rest.

At the conclusion of the medication regiment we hope to see no more symptoms. But if so we will dig deeper and maybe look at possible kidney issues. Even though Doc was reassuring he doubts this would be the case.

So Jo is settled back in the HK Barn with her grain, her hay, and her first dose of meds.


Back home enjoying breakfast

I am so relieved to know she will most likely be in the clear soon. And I have to admit I am a bit proud that I noted her changes in movement and soreness in a specific spot. I just wish I would have taken her a couple weeks ago when I initially noticed a difference.

But either way I took a huge breath of relief. It’s amazing how much this girl means to me.

And thanks to everyone who showed concerned or sent up a prayer for Jo and I. We are forevor thankful to you.


Trapped in Siberia


Bunny and Owl Hibernating

Currently its 45° F here in Siberia…. I mean the HK Bar, Kansas, USA. So I guess that’s the temperature outside and falling…..

Inside we are currently at……


Yep, read it and weep folks…..a heatwave of 54° F…..

My husband and I have played this game every year for the past seven years we have owned the HK…. We both refuse to be the first one to break down and turn on heat of any kind. Needless to say, we both have a stubborn streak a country mile wide.

If memory serves me correctly I have “won” this  competition every year except the year I had a newborn (Bunny) and a 10 month old (Owl) nestled in cradles. I was so afraid they would get too cold so I caved first. BUT this year Boo, Owl, and Bunny are pulling for my side and hoping for a win! They don thier long johns, footy pajamas, robes and blankets with a smile.

At this point you’re probably thinking here in Kansas…specifically the HK.. .us occupants are crazy. And you’d be right! This is what we do for entertainment.

So for now we entertain ourselves here in Siberia….errrrr…  I mean the HK Bar, Kansas, USA by making silly sport of who will turn the heat source on first.

Fortitude ladies fortitude! We shall prevail!

I’d love to hear what the weather is like where YOU are!


The Cowgirl Princesses of The HK Bar


I realize my blog posts of Life on The HK Bar are filled with dozens of references and stories of these little cowgirls. Sometimes it is nice to put a face with a name. So today I’ll introduce these cowgirls to those of you that are new readers, and I’ll reintroduce them to those of you who are (not old) longtime readers.

Captain Boo who will turn 6 this first week of November is our oldest. Her greatest loves in life are her horse Romeo, her dog Precious, superheros, and football.


Boo and her main man Romeo last show of the season;costume class


Boo played flag football this fall 2015

Boo is the type of kid when asked what she wants for her birthday she says, I just want a cake and my friends and family. She doesn’t ask for much. She loves to read and spends hours picking through my books reading just the words she knows. She knows her mind and is an absolute leader. There will be no following for this one. She is wise beyond her years. Her spirit is a fiery one and the sky is the limit for my incredible number one.

Second in line is my Owl. She will turn three in January. She is my biggest animal lover and I secretly hope she becomes a vet. Who wouldn’t like free animal care!? If it has a pulse the child wants to hold it and inspect it. When she is riding her horses or even snuggles up on the couch with one of our dogs you can see her passion for animals shine through her eyes. She’s fiercely protective and loyal to her sisters. The girl is a bulldog! Her smile makes me laugh.


Owl riding the barrel pattern on her own at just two years old. (On Romeo)

Owl is our resident fashionista. She loves bows and purses and sunglasses with her leopard print jeans and cowboy boots. She is my tender heart. She cries when she watches Black Beauty, Where The Red Fern Grows, and other sad movies. And she has since she was barely a year old. Owl is my humanitarian and if anyone can bring world peace to a reality it will be our Owl.

Our last but not least is Bunny. She will turn two the end of November. Bunny is the type of kid that wants to make everyone happy. She is ornery and mischievous to a fault. I also call her my wild card. She can be the clown one minute, then in a fit of rage, then patting your back the next minute.



Bunny is the type to jump in feet first. Shes confident and brave. I’ve never known a soul as free as hers. Our Bunny has the charisma of a nation, the heart of a lion, and the dreams of visionary. I’m not quite sure who this girl will be, bit I know whatever she decides, whatever she can dream up, its hers.


Bunny and I

So that’s a glimpse of the Princess Cowgirls that rule the HK Bar. They are my heart, my world, and my everything. And in the days to come I hope they will make you laugh, make you dream, and make you think as much as they do me.

Until next time.


Between A Gate And Another Gate


Between a gate and another gate…..
Is my happiness….is my heart….is my therapist… Is my freedom…is my dreams…is my discipline… Is my Jo.

I took this picture this morning while I was walking up the lane. My girl Jo is always waiting for me. And she’s been known to come find me if she thinks ive been away too long, or if I haven’t excersized her enough, or anything else to her caliber of liking.

She is a Houdini of sorts. She does all sorts of fun stuff like turn on water spickets and flood a stud barn when she felt spited for me leaving her there to get bred…..she opens the gates to her pasture and roams at will, she has been known to release the herd of six mini horses…and if she is feeling particularly lonely or neglected she comes and stands on my front porch until I come outside. The girl has a definite personality. And I love her for it. So for those of you who regularly follow my blog you know I have been questioning Jos health in recent weeks. So today I bit the bullet and called and scheduled her an appointment. I think the lady taking my appointment thought I was nuts. When she asked me, What’s the issue? I went on to tell her I can’t find anything specific other than the fact that she seems off in her back end, she seems uncomfortable when being groomed around her flank area, and that her personality has changed a bit. The receptionist literally repeated back in mock tone “Her personality has had a change?”

I didn’t argue with the woman I just said yes. And silently thought to myself the Jo that I know isn’t the same one standing in the turnout this very minute. She’s telling me something  is going on with her.

So Saturday we go bright and early for an exam.

Until then, now you know what lies between a gate and another gate on the HK Bar. ❤




Today started just like any other. The alarm went off at 0500 and I started my day bathing the girls, getting them dressed, cooking breakfast, finding boots and Boos school bag. All the normal things I usually do.

Until I went to the back door to call our cat in. Her name is Nermle or Jingle Bell, it depends on who you ask. Unlike all the other mornings that she comes bounding in the door entertaining us with her antics and yowling conversation., she didn’t show. No Nermle. No Jingle Bell. No bounding. No yowling. Just a deathly silence.

I grew up knowing that on a farm there will be loss of life. I was taught that cows, pigs, sometimes even chickens would end up as supper, and that in that loss we gained. I was taught there would also be other losses of life, even among our dearest pets; dogs, horses, cats.

And today my children, the children of the next farming generation, the children of the HK Bar will be taught these lessons of loss.

My husband Kevin found Nermle. Lifeless.

Of course Boo and Owl at One and Two are too young to realize that Nermle is no longer with us. Out of sight out of mind. Boo is at school right now so I’m spending my hours today thinking of the family discussion we will have when she gets home from school, and the funeral we will have, and how we will all cry and hurt together over the loss of our wonderful kitty.

In all this I thank God for these lessons that he is teaching my girls. I thank Him that they too, like I did and the generations of farm families before me learned; there will always be loss; but in every loss there will be gain. Even if the gain is learning how to say goodbye, even if the lesson smashes your heart into a million pieces.

Today we will celebrate a life.
Today we will cry.
Today we will say goodbye.
Today we will learn what loss is.

And in that we will be reminded how beautiful life truly is.

From the HK Bar to the world, in life, there will always be losses.


Sleeping With the Enemy Update ; Secret Weapon

Recently I had a run-in with an absolute enemy of mine (a mouse). And this is the update many of you have emailed me asking for. If you haven’t read the back story you can stop right here and read back a few posts in my blog it is titled ‘Sleeping With the Enemy’.

So after a near sleepless night wedged in my five year old daughter Boo’s twin bed, I devised my attack plan. Bleach, pinesol,bar bait,  thorough cleaning, and of course the secret weapon.

The following day I rose bright and early ready to enforce my plan to the fullest. Six hours of thorough cleaning later I finally felt like I could let my children play without myself conjuring images of them playing with any remains of said enemy. (Shudder)

Then the secret weapon was unleashed. No literally….Nermle a.k.a. Jingle Bell was unleashed back into housecatdom of the HK Bar farm house. I haven’t seen a single trace of a mouse since our secret weapon was reintroduced into the enemy occupied zone, and I don’t think the cleaning hurt anything either.

So now I can sleep in my own bed knowing that   the enemy is at bay……and the secret weapon is enjoyed by all of us too because she is so sweet.


Bunny and the secret weapon a.k.a. Nermle, Jingle Bell