Almost Done

We’re coming down to the final days of 2017.
Good.
I am so done with this year.
Ready for 2018, because damn, 2018 is going to be better.
I. Insist. On. It.
πŸ˜‰

Next year will, of course, hold more of the same for us.
Piglets.
Meat chickens.
Egg layers.
Cheeky DuckBoys.
The silly Mares. ❀

Then there’ll be some new stuff too.
Girlfriends for the DuckBoys.
Turkeys.
Maybe, just maybe, a calf…I can hope. πŸ˜‰

I’m going to re-start (for the 3rd year in a row) the fund to upgrade my camera. In 2018 there will be no pressing vet issues with any horse that eats it again.
None.
It is not allowed.
I really want to go full frame.
I really want to do more photography.
I really want to do more Art photography.
Nothing crazy extravagant (by some people’s standards πŸ˜‰ ), but wholly and completely soul satisfying.
I really want to share the name I’ve (finally!!) settled on for my photography…but not yet.
And, if we’re friends on FB, please don’t spoil the surprise, because I kinda wanna do it as a big reveal.
It’s a name I’m really happy with.
It sings to my Spirit, and embodies all the good stuff in my life.
Look for the reveal in 2018.
πŸ™‚

The next few days will see me sorting through last years photos.
I am going to post my Best of 2017, like I did last year.
Same format, month by month, that will include our most memorable Farm moments as well.
That will go live at 12:01 on Jan. 1st.
‘Til then…here’s a pretty picture of Sable being a big ol’ goofball.
See ya next year!
❀

“I be rollin’
My back is itchy…oooooh, feels soooo good!!”
~ Sable

Advertisements

Torn

Adversity is like a strong wind.
It tears away from us all
but the things that cannot be torn,
so that we see ourselves as we really are.
~ Arthur Golden


It’s that time of year when I should be plotting my Christmas photo shoot with the Girls. I’m pretty sure it’s not happening this year.
I’m too tired.
The thought of picking up the camera is exhausting.
Which is why y’all have been getting recycled images.
I just don’t have it me…

And yet…

I’m torn, because I still have ideas, plans, plots for photo shoots.
Stuff I want to do with the horses, things I want to try to create.
Meh.
We’ll see what happens come the New Year.
Winter is hard and tiring to begin with.
This one has been brutal.
But, as I told one friend,
“November sucked donkey balls…
It can only get better from here.”
Really hoping that’s true.

Cookie’s Favorite Cookies

This face…


She could smell her favorite gingerbread cookies before they even hit the oven. πŸ˜‰
I don’t know what it was about that particular recipe, but that horse would call for them as soon as she smelled me baking them. And, if I happened to go out to the pasture with a few warm-from-the-oven ones for her, she’d love me for days and days afterwards.
❀

Cookie’s Gingerbread Cookies

3 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp ground ginger
1 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon 😘
1/4 tsp ground cloves ~ I used fresh ground nutmeg instead, because I have it on hand for egg nog.
6 tbsps unsalted butter
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup molasses
2 tsps vanilla

  1. preheat oven to 375 degrees
  2. prepare baking sheets by lining with parchment paper
  3. whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt ginger, cinnamon, and cloves (nutmeg)
  4. in large bowl, beat butter, brown sugar and egg on medium speed until well blended
  5. add molasses and vanilla and mix until well blended
  6. gradually stir in dry ingredients until blended and smooth
  7. wrap in plastic wrap and let rest in fridge for 15 minutes

Now, from here you can leave the dough in the fridge for up to a week and bake as needed.

When it comes to baking, you can roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface and cut into shapes, or you can do what I do…

  1. Roll a tbsp or so of dough into a ball.
  2. roll ball of dough in white sugar to coat
  3. place on parchment lined cookie sheet
  4. smoosh a wee bit flat
  5. bake at 375 for 7-10 minutes
  6. Enjoy!!

That’s it.
Simple, easy peasy gingerbread cookies that made my darling Paint lose her mind. πŸ˜‰

“Where’s my cookies, Food Lady?!?” ❀

Redemption

Over and over, in our time together, people told me how lucky Cookie was to have me.
My response was always the same…

“Nope. I’m the lucky one…”


Y’see, when you grow up being told that you’re not wanted, you believe that. You really do believe that you aren’t worthy of being loved.
By anyone.
And, it doesn’t matter how many people come along afterwards and try to tell you that you are worthy, there’s always that Little Voice in the back of your head that whispers “Don’t believe ’em. Don’t you dare believe them. People always lie.”
Heh. I’ll tell ya, my Hubby is a frickin’ Saint for sticking with me all these years! That little voice makes living with someone like me awful hard sometimes.

But, horses?
They don’t lie.
They’re as open and honest as any creature can be.
They’ll show you exactly what they see in you every time.

Cookie practices her unicorn poses as the sun rises.

So you see, it was always me that was the lucky one.
Because what she saw in me, she deemed worthy.
Not only of her absolute trust, but of her love.

Cookie EasterBunny

She offered me her heart and I gave her my everything.
She gave me redemption.
Proof that I was…I am…worthy of being loved.

“Oh! Hey Mama…whatcha doin'”
~Cookie

I always said that we came together as 2 broken creatures who needed each other to become whole again.

❀

That is 100% truth.
I didn’t realize how much so, until I lost her.
I may have adopted her from the Rescue that saved her from being on a plate, but Cookie rescued me from myself and that ugly little voice.

It’s funny, I have these moments where I swear, I’m not going to let any animal into my heart like this again.
This has been the worst grief I have ever carried.
And yet…
We all know.
I’ll do it again.
I’m going to let another one in, and that horse will never fill the space in my heart that went with Cookie, but instead, stand beside it and make me stronger.
And when I lose that horse, I’ll probably do it again.
And again.
And again.
I’m a sucker for punishment like that. πŸ˜‰

“Haha! You can’t seeeeeee me…I’m hiding behind this treeeeeee!!!”
~Cookie

Last week I did a photo shoot that reminded me, once again, the Power equines have in our lives.
Watching people, children, families, connect to their chosen horses cut through the grief and proved to me that this pain is a blip in the road.
We love them with such depth and passion, it’s so hard to lose them.
But they just don’t live as long as we do, and we have to make the most of our time with them. ❀

This holiday season, I’m going to work at getting out and taking some fresh picture with my Girls.
I haven’t taken anything new here since Cookie’s funeral pyre.
Not only was she my Heart Horse, she was my Muse.
All photo shoots were planned around whether or not I could convince her to do what I wanted.
Sable always goes first, because she’s easy.
Ask and done. No convincing, no worries, just a perfect model.
Cookie, well I had to reassure that it was safe, that I would always put her safety first, that we really could make beautiful pictures together.
And we did. Often.
I was always so proud of her for trusting me and wearing all those odd, scary little things for me.

Cookie wears the Canadian flag.

Now, I’m a little lost.
I had plans for her, for pictures.
Things that just didn’t get done.

Oh Ms Cookie!

I’m working on finding my way.
It’s a lonely path without her.
But I can do this. I know I can.
I’ve been redeemed by the love of a damn fine horse.
The best way to honor her is to continue on…and eventually find the next damn fine horse who needs a little redemption themselves.
❀