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God’s Perfect Timing, and my heartbreak

My Aunt died Tuesday. She was 53 years young and so full of life….until she wasn’t. Through all this I know God has perfect timing. I’m trusting his hand in this and just holding strong for those around me that are shredded by grief and pain and loss.

I put on a smile and hug those that need it most. I retell stories from happy times gone by. Like when my Aunt bought me and my brother and my cousin super soakers (waterguns) for Christmas one year and we played outside in the snow and cold for hours with her climbing trees and ducking around corners to surprise each other with a face full of water. Her smile was radiant. She took me to minister and feed the homeless on numerous occasions. No neighborhood too scary or tough for the 115 lb God fearing ball of love that was my Aunt. She was armed with bibles and Gods light, because that’s all she needed in this life. And numerous other stories I’ll clutch in my heart and retell again and again.

This morning is the eve of goodbye and my heart is breaking for those around me. I’m having a stiff drink and scheduling time with my bible.

Please pray. Pray for peace and comfort and wisdom in this journey.

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Lessons in Goodbye

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Bunny and Owl with pup

A farm teaches a child so many life lessons. And one of those lessons my two youngest girls learned today, was about saying goodbye.

The first pup out of Bullet’s litter went to his forevor home today.

Before the new owners got here I sat down with Owl and Bunny and explained to them that the pup was headed for a new home, and that he would be well taken care of there. I told them how when we grow up we leave our Mamas to make a life of our own.

Owl began to cry and kept hugging the pup saying, “But Mama its so hard to let him go! I will miss him. Will they give him lots of love?”

I assured her yes, of course they would,and  although it is hard to say goodbye, that’s the way it works. I told her we are meant to grow up and then go out on our own.

Bunny just patted the pup on the head and said “Bye Bye puppy,” and then bounded off to play with the pumpkins. She gave no further thought to the situation.

It was in this moment I realized the difference ten months in age makes. Owl is already working out and reasoning the puppy is leaving the HK Bar for good, and just exactly how she feels about it. And Bunny says see ya later and doesn’t give it another thought.

When the new owners arrived Owl repeatedly asked them, “Will you share my puppy? Will you give him a good home? Will you love him?” To all of which they told her yes. And then she finally seemed satisfied they would. And she ran off to play with Bunny and the pumpkins.

When I laid Bunny and Owl down for thier afternoon nap after we said our final goodbyes to the pup newly dubbed “Moose”, Owl said a prayer for him. She folded her hands and clenched her eyes shut and said,
” God please take care of my pup. Make them love Moose like I do. Amen.”

And then she looked up to me from her bed and smiled before rolling over and nodding off.

It made me say a prayer too, thanking God for being able to raise my children on the HK Bar where they learn Gods way, and all the life lessons they need to prepare for thier own futures.  ❤ Especially the ones where we say goodbye.

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Life is Juggling

I look at my life like I am a juggler. I juggle different balls, the first ball is “Mother”. I feel like this ball is often my heaviest. I put huge weight into being a good mom to my three girls. Everything from basic needs, feeding, clothing bathing to more complex ideas like social, spiritual, and intellectual growth are all jam packed into this one heavy ball. It may be a heavy ball, but its one I love dearly.

The second ball is ” wife”. A somewhat less intimidating ball of medium weight but still of great importance. This medium weight ball demands nurturing and continuing to grow a relationship. It demands faith and attention and trust among other things.

The third ball is what I call me the “divine” ball. This one represents my faith and spiritual journey through God. Its a ball that I drop often when the other balls seem to get heavier. Instead I need to value and cherish this one more. It gives strength where some others cannot.

The fourth ball is “career and household”. This is the ball I drop and neglect the most. Laundry goes undone, bills go unpaid, dishes stay unwashed, etc. I don’t take as many shifts at work, or I don’t put as much time into Little Horse Company.

The fifth ball is ” animals”. I love my animals dearly and they are never put on the back burner. They demand care needs like people do, emotional and physical well being. They require a great amount of time and effort.

This juggling act that is my life really runs pretty well. Sure Some balls get heavier than others at times, I drop balls, my timing gets off, and sometimes I throw them all down and pick them back up adding them back in one by one  into my juggling act.

Sometimes this juggling act goes smoothly, sometimes not. But I realize it sure is amazing I have been blessed with so many balls. (Theoretically speaking).

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The “Other” Part of Captain Boo; Did Lucifer’s Parents not Hug Him Enough?

My five year old daughter Boo is extraordinary. Not a day goes by that she doesn’t challenge me, teach me, and amaze me. All three of my girls teach me to be a better version of myself.

I often worry if I guide my children correctly. Do I push them enough? Do I encourage them enough? All the questions that plague me wondering if I am doing a good enough job raising my girls.

In so many ways my Boo is a “normal” five year old girl. She loves her horse Romeo, she likes her hair cut in a short bob, she loves batman and super heroes, she guides her sisters and fights with them…..and then there is the “other” part of Boo that makes me wonder. I don’t want to use the word “abnormal” as that has a negative sound. There’s a part of her that makes the hair stand up on my arms….the part of her that leaves me in awe and makes me a bit overwhelmed. I often find myself smiling and shrugging my shoulders at this part of her. This part of her I don’t know yet how to describe in words. Anyone who has met Boo I’m sure knows exactly what I am talking about. She thinks and sometimes speaks like someone light years ahead of her age…….

There are moments when she’s the five year old throwing an attitude because she doesn’t want to wear jeans…  And then there’s the other part……

Boo, Owl, and Bunny were sitting at the kitchen table. It was early morning and the sun was rising. I stood at the kitchen stove scrambling eggs and smiling at my girls. We watched fat wet snow flakes come down in heaps out the window.

Boo folded and unfolded her hands. She bore a serious look and chewed at her lip. She looked up at me and said,
“Mom when Lucifer the angel was thrown out of heaven for doing something terrible, was it because his parents didn’t hug him enough? Did he become that way because no one loved him enough? Because I was thinking how awful it would be for his parents ..I mean they raise him up as good as they can and then he goes and gets himself thrown in hell for being terrible. Why does bad things happen? Why do people make bad decisions?”

These are those moments …..This is that “other” part of Boo.

I said Well, parents do the best they know how to raise their children to make the right decisions. They do their best. And then the day comes along that the child has to make choices for themselves…..and the parents hope and pray they have taught their child to choose wisely and make good decisions. I told her good people make bad decisions sometimes. I told her bad things happen because that is a part of life. I told her God loves us no matter what. And yes, God even loves Lucifer who was cast into hell for doing bad.

Boo said, “Silly old Lucifer, I bet if he’d be good. God would let him back in heaven. I bet he’d bear hug him and forgive him. I bet that’s what God would do if Lucifer asked forgiveness. I think bad things happen for a reason Mom. I think they happen because we all have choices to make and sometimes people just make the wrong ones……even if their mom and dad hugged them and loved them enough…”

I hugged my Boo and silently held back tears. I thank God every day for my daughter that is so wise, that teaches me, and gives me a new view of the world.

After breakfast she asked me to read her part of the bible that talks about Lucifer being cast from heaven. I had to do some research to find it but did…..Isaiah 14: 3-23.

After we read it together Boo said, “OK, thanks Mom for showing me that. Can I go build a fort for my sisters and I out of the couch cushions?”

I just smiled and said, “Of course you can. Go play.”

My beautiful Captn’ Boo. I love your normal and  I love your “other”……

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The Christmas Bob died for us (like Jesus)

When my oldest daughter Boo was three years old she cried after we took our Christmas tree down. She had named our tree Bob. We explained to her that Bob would be replanted by Daddy and we could use him again next year. So we fibbed to temporarily salvage her heart.

Last Christmas when Boo was four she excitedly welcomed Bob back into our home for the Christmas season. When Christmas was over, we took down the tree, and a cascade of tears followed with Bobs parting. But again we explained that Bob would be taken back out, replanted by daddy, and we could use him again next year.

This Christmas our Boo is five. Today we went out to cut our tree and Boo looked at me, laughed, and said

” Mom, I know this tree isn’t Bob. I know Bob died after Christmas last year, he died because we cut him down. He was a good tree for us, but he died so we could enjoy him for Gods birthday. Kind of like when Jesus died on that cross for us. They both gave us a gift, their lives.”

Wow! My little Boo has grown so wise. This is the year I will always remember Bob died for us, just like Jesus died for us on the cross.

From the HK Bar to the world, be merry, be blessed.

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Boo and Bob this year

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In an Instant; A story of survival and a life changed.

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August 2013 I received a call that changed my family’s life forever. I’ll never forget what I was doing. Boo my oldest daughter was sitting on my lap reading a book, Owl my middle daughter was rocking in her baby swing nearby, and I was heavily pregnant with my youngest daughter bunny. My cell rang with a sharp noise and I answered it immediately when the caller I.d. displayed that it was my husband calling.

“Hello?”

I heard raspy breathing and sharp intakes of breath, my blood went cold,

“Honey, I love you. I’ve lost a boot and I can’t find it. It all happened so fast. The truck oh god the truck. I hit my head. I rolled the semi. There’s pieces all over the road. There is blood everywhere. I’m so sorry honey I love you and the girls. I was just trying to get home. The window was down. It was so hot. My head hurts so bad. I’m alive, someone is stopping to help me now. Its okay now, ill be home soon.”

My husband had been in our semi hauling round bales of hay when he hit loose gravel and rolled the entire truck. If his drivers side window would not have been rolled down he surely would have been killed.

A neighbor, and good friend of ours came upon the accident only moments after it happened. He later told me,

I just knew I was going to find Staley dead in that truck.”

Instead he found my husband disoriented and walking down the side of the road picking up pieces of his truck. He was only wearing one boot and had a huge head injury. He was covered in blood, speaking rapidly, and obviously in shock.

Soon after that another friend and neighbor arrived on the scene with a tractor and towed the semi home to the HK Bar. Kevin received medical attention and I spent the remainder of that night waking him up and changing ice packs on his head.

My husband repeatedly told me,

“I remember it all happened in slow motion, I asked God to let me live. I told him I had four girls that needed me home.”

The next morning I walked out our back door and saw the semi. I couldn’t believe my husband had survived , but then remembering my husbands plea to God to let him live, I knew it was Gods will that he was still taking air into his lungs.

This accident changed my husband forevor. He had danced on the precipice of death and had been pulled back by and almighty hand. He now takes time to kiss his four girls every time he goes to leave, he takes no un needed chances, and he appreciates every last breath he takes.

This accident also changed my life. It taught me to hold my husband close and never miss an opportunity to tell him how much I love him.

That night if my husband’s window had not been rolled down he surely would have been killed the way the impact and damage happened to the truck. He said he had rolled the window down because the a/c couldn’t keep the cab cool because it was so hot.

I thank God for that hot day, I thank god for a rolled down window, and I thank god for letting my husband come home to his girls that night, and every night since then…..

Hold those dear to you close, and never, never miss an opportunity to tell them how much you love them.

Our lives could have been so different………
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Under Construction

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Jo watching my husband, Kevin, build

The HK Bar is a place of old things. Our house is old, and our barns are even older. I love old things, they have character, and oh so many stories to tell. Here there is always something being fixed, refixed, built, or rebuilt. We are perpetually under construction.

Today my husband and one of his friends are framing up a new loafing shed for the horses. After the girls layed down for a nap I snuck out to see how the project was coming along.

My best girl Jo saw me and decided to come over and say hello and also to help me inspect the men’s work. As I stood there with Jo it made me think of the scripture,

Hebrews 3:4 For every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God.”

Going over this particular scripture makes me thankful, and it also makes me realize this beautiful life is built and made possible by Him.

Today I’m thankful for a new horse shed, I’m thankful for this beautiful life, and I’m thankful for perpetually being under construction both literally and spiritually.