I Don’t Even Know What to Say

Truthfully….  this is exactly how I feel.  I. Don’t. Know. What. To. Say.

A part of me feels as though I need to explain away the past 10 months and why I’ve been absent.  Another part of me feels that its not important.  Life happened, is happening and that’s the long and short of it.

A part of me has greatly enjoyed this long break from my daily sharing and yet, another part has greatly missed it.

Regardless of how I’ve felt, the truth boils down to time.  I haven’t had it, not have I felt that I could squeeze it in.  I don’t want to apologize for my absence because that would be false.  I’m sure all of you can relate to the need for a change.

Change…. THAT is the reason that I’m able to come back to you at this point in time.  My, how things have changed.

Three and a half months ago we made a HUGE life decision.  We took on a new adventure that would change our lives.  We were scared.  We were nervous.  Most of all, we were EXCITED.  We uprooted out kids, left my husband’s hometown of 38 years and moved an hour away for an incredible ranch job in the heart of Kansas.  Due to the nature of the calling we felt very strongly that this was a blessing from God.  It has always been our dream to manage a ranch and raise our children the way we were raised.  After years of prayers, trials and tribulations we were given this amazing opportunity.

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Now, I’m a stay at home mom/ranch hand.

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Ranch Life 2

Grady is learning the ropes under the current ranch manager with the title being passed on to him within a year.

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Tucker is in an amazing school district full of country kids just like him.  He goes to school four days a week, which means he gets to work alongside his parents every Friday.

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We have been blessed with AMAZING friends in such a short period of time.  Arms have been open, welcoming us to this community.

Don’t get me wrong.  There have been adjustments.  Being a SAHM (Stay At Home Mom) was never something I desired.  I love working.  Being at home with Monkey has proven to be a challenge for both of us at times.  I think we’ve finally fallen into a good routine.  Mornings are spent at home and afternoons are spent on the ranch working, unless, of course, we’re needed for the whole day.

The best part…. my EXTREMELY happy cowboy!  He is on cloud nine.  This has been his calling.  He was born to do this.  Seeing him (US) get to do exactly what he (WE) loves/(LOVE), day in and day out, brings great joy to me.  …and we get to work as a team.  I know… this isn’t every couple’s desire, but we do a pretty great job.

So, there you have it.  Our current life in a nutshell.  I hope to be able to keep you updated with fun stories of life on the ranch.

Peace, love and country living.

Stress Relief

It seems like life has been one crazy thing after another this summer.  Much busier than usual.

I “think” I’m a person who handles stress well.  I “think” I prioritize and manage my responsibilities without losing it.  Even though I have a grip on it all there are times that it all just gets to me and I need to have some serious de-stressing.

Everyone has their own “thing” that they turn to get through those little patches in life.

Last night I walked into my house after my meeting and quick trip to the in-laws to grab kiddos and catch up.  I saw this WRETCHED disaster before me.  My kitchen looked like a high school football team just raided the fridge and left all the dishes and mess.  My mud room looked like a herd of elephants ransacked the place and the laundry piled on the couch needed desperate attention.  This week has NOT been friendly to our usual calm schedule.

We got the kids fed and I started tackling the NASTY kitchen that had been so sadly neglected. As I cleared the countertops and sanitized with my beloved bleach spray I felt this overwhelming calm wash over me. I could breath again. It amazes me sometimes how the clutter and chaos that are a result of all the chaos can CAUSE chaos within me.

While I was in my groove I started to think of all the things that bring calm to my spirit…

Beautiful sunrises and sunsets.

A quiet cup of coffee all by myself before the family gets out of bed.

Editing photos that I took for no particular reason.

Mowing the lawn. (I know call me crazy, but it’s an hour or so that the world is drowned out by a loud “white noise”. It’s soothing.)

Reading my book for 15 minutes before I fall asleep.

Quiet chats with Grady about nothing urgent or important. Just. Talk.

Grocery shopping.

Cooking a meal at a leisurely pace that REALLY means something to my family.

Long walks in my neck of the woods.

Reading cookbooks.

Sewing.

Rocking Ella to sleep.

Nap time with Tucker.

Listening to Eric Clapton sing the blues with BB King.

…and above all…

Prayer.

What calms you when life throws curve balls? What’s your happy place?

Peace, love and serenity!!

Faith and Patience

My life sometimes demands that I play the roles of single mother, faith seeker, and patience guru.  Last night was such a night.

As with any normal evening I called Grady on my way home to find out what his routine is looking like and when he thinks he’ll be getting home.  On any usual night he’s home by 6 or 6:30.  No worries.  I like to ask though because one of my biggest pet peeves is to have supper ready and still be waiting on him to show up.

On this particular evening at 5:00 he was certain he’d be done shortly and on the road.  So, with no worries, I picked up the kids, ran to the store for a few essentials and headed home to start supper.  Nachos to be exact.

In the middle of my food preparations I get a phone call from said husband informing that he wouldn’t be home any time soon.  A water pump had gone out and they had to stay to fix it because, well…the cattle HAVE to be able to drink.  I moaned and groaned, but understood.  It’s his job.  It’s out of his control.  I knew all of this.

So, I continued with supper knowing the kids and I would be dining alone.  No, biggie.  It happens.  I got to play the single parent role.  Big whoop.

Several hours lapsed and the kids were bathed and ready for a bottle and snuggle time.  I tried to call Grady and got no answer.  It was 8:00 at that point in time. 

“It’s fine,” I kept telling myself.

“I’m sure he’s elbows deep in water and mud right now.  He CAN’T answer his phone.”

Remember when I posted about being the mother of the year?  Remember when I talked about being a worrier.  Well, those tendencies didn’t fade with the onset of adulthood.  I am STILL a worrier to this day. 

Grady has a relatively dangerous job.  No he’s not fighting fires or dueling it out with criminals on a daily basis, but the life of a cowboy has many risks that come with it.

Okay, so it’s not THIS dangerous on a regular basis, but it’s close… (and this is his hobby…)

My mind started going 100 mph wondering what was going on 40 miles away.  Couldn’t he have taken a short break to call me and let me know they were doing okay and still working on the well.  Didn’t he know his wife would be just a little worried.

No.  When Grady gets focused on a job his mind is nowhere else but on the task at hand.  I know this about him.  That’s not to say that it doesn’t drive me bananas.

So, I had to rely on my faith that he was fine, he was getting his work done and he’d be home when he got home.  I had to have faith that God was protecting the guys and helping to guide them in the right direction of repairing the well.  Afterall, in the grand scheme of things, these men are doing God’s work taking care of these animals.

And then I had to remember patience.  I am NOT a very patient person.  Oh, I’m tolerant and understanding.  I am patient when I know I need to be, but combine worry with a small lack of patience and it can get messy.  So, I usually dive into a book, turn on a good show and fold clothes or do my best to get some shut-eye.  If I am patient, I know he’ll call when he’s done and on his way. 

It’s tough to be in the “unknown”.  I can’t imagine what it would have been like before the days of cell phones.  I’ve heard countless stories of absolute crazy disasters my father had to fix while my mother was the single parent, faith seeker and patience guru at home.  She did a good job.  There weren’t many times any of her internal worry trickled down to us.

So, I suppose I did my job well last night.  Tucker wasn’t worried about where Daddy was and Ella was her usual ornery self. 

Grady got home safe and sound somewhere around 11:00 and the cattle had water to drink.

God bless a cowboy and his big heart for without it we wouldn’t enjoy our cheeseburgers and t-bones.

Peace, love and patiently waiting.