Who’s Lee? Does He Say Anything?

Lee as the cover of a romance novel for middle-aged women.

Lee is my spouse! I’ve mentioned him before, I just know it. Oh, I can be funny.

We will have been married 11 years on Friday. He’s a hermit. But he does right a lot. You’ve perhaps seen some of his posts on our Hermit Haus Redevelopment blog or the new Hearts, Homes and Hands blog. Still, he told me he wondered why no one seems to come across his personal blog, while I get a reasonable number of hits.

I told him no one’s going to just stumble over it; they have to know it’s there. I share.

Now I will share Lee!

If you’d like to learn a little bit about him, head over to The Hermitage, a blog he’s been keeping since I met him. There he gets to control all his HTML and format all his pictures exactly how he likes it, and that makes him happy.

None of this WordPress hand-holding for him! Right now, he’s sharing what he’s grateful for, and I’m happy to be one of those things.

I’m grateful for my spousal unit, too. He’s really kind, generous, stubborn, and occasionally grumpy. Other times, he’s funny and sweet. In other words, he’s human!

One thing that makes us a fun couple is how different we are. Go see him and find out for yourself! Give him a comment or follow him on Blogger.

MUST We Always Be Correct? The Conversation Killer

This morning, Anita and I were talking about how some of our circle participate in conversations. There are some issues where a couple of the folks really like to be correct and make sure everyone knows their version of the facts. Other people are sensitive about being “corrected” in public. During these conversations, I am mostly conspicuously quiet.

Let me tell you this about that! My dad always said that.

Why am I quiet? When one of these fact-slinging fests starts up, I quickly decide for myself whether MY version of what is correct is important enough for me to interject it and possibly get into an argument or make someone feel stupid. Usually, it simply isn’t. Whether Family Member A is citing outdated statistics to prove a point or Family Member B doesn’t remember a historical fact accurately is really their problem.

What happens is that the conversation is effectively killed when someone declares, “This is the only answer. The end.” (Meanwhile, I’m over there googling.)

Continue reading “MUST We Always Be Correct? The Conversation Killer”

Horses Heal Hearts

I feel so good right now. Sara and I just went on a long ride on Apache and Spice. Due to our schedules, we hadn’t been out for a while.

Look what we did! We put the bowl in the trough! Hee haw!

I was a little worried that Apache would be hard to ride after so long, but he seemed as glad to go explore as I was. We had a blast.

It’s so pretty.

The light and foliage were spectacular, and because we went way to the edge of the property, we got to see some longhorns next door.

Shining ranch. We love it here.
Scenic longhorns.

Spice started getting antsy when we saw some deer in the distance, and had trouble settling down. Fiona was too busy eating to notice the deer at first, so when they ran across the field, she ran all over.

There is a deer in the picture.

Going home was a challenge for Sara, but she handled Spice really well. She went round and round in circles a lot.

I was here!

I enjoyed myself so much. I wished the ride would never end. I feel so calm and serene, like I have no problems. I feel healed. And I think the horse is as happy as me.

Our newest calf, Grazzi. Sort of like thanks.

Book Report: The Body: A Guide for Occupants

Ooh-wee am I excited to share this book report! I’ve been making myself obnoxious the entire time I’ve been reading it, because I keep telling everyone little tidbits I’ve learned or recommending it with great abandon. I sure liked The Body: A Guide for Occupants, by Bill Bryson. I am a complete sucker for nonfiction that both informs and entertains, and this book certainly achieves those goals and more.

Even Penney the dog liked this book, at least at first.

Bryson, who is many people’s favorite nonfiction writer, according to the many people who told me that, takes you on a tour of the human body and all its systems, and he shares lots of current information (the book just came out) as well as fascinating stories of what people used to believe about various aspects of ourselves.

Continue reading “Book Report: The Body: A Guide for Occupants”

Planning to Be Interesting

While I have little exciting to report today, I sure planned to be interesting later! I think that counts as good news.

I did a lot of work for my volunteer jobs. The best part was planning for next year’s Master Naturalist activities with our Vice President, Donna. She hates computers and I love them, so we are complementary.

The back of Donna as she talked about bluebirds

We even made a survey to ask the members what they want to learn about next year. The one person who has filled it out so far is me, but then it hasn’t gone out in email yet.

Carlton wants his fellow pound puppies to get to run around like he does.

Lee and I then went to Tractor Supply in scenic Hearne, where I not only got horse and chicken supplies, but also scoped out supplies for the dog run our family and business are going to build for the Cameron dog pound.

We even got an invitation to do a dog adoption day at the Tractor Supply store! Thus, I did work for ALL my volunteer jobs! Interesting!

The evening has started well, too. As I walked back from horse feeding at dusk, I heard the sandhill cranes above me. I guess they were heading to the big lake by the old Alcoa plant.

Imagine cranes here. They are too high to photograph.

Then I walked through the field as flocks of Savannah sparrows took off at my approach. Their wings were beautiful to hear.

Ahh, autumn.

Fall Beauty Is Subtle but Sweet

I’ve really been enjoying the weather and the fall foliage the past week or two. It got all windy in Austin and leaves were swirling like they did back in Illinois when I lived there.

One oak and many cedar elms

Here at the ranch the cedar elms are the ones that provide color. It’s not bright, but the trees have many shades going from orange to russet brown.

Yellow leaves!

There’s one tree with yellow foliage. I’m thinking it’s a mesquite. I didn’t look too hard. It must be something else.

Continue reading “Fall Beauty Is Subtle but Sweet”

Guest Blogger: Are You Ever Safe from Snakes? No.

by Mandi Shuffield
Sarge, 9 years old. He will let his boys do anything they want to him. They seem to love putting things on his head…

The weather is finally cooling off here in Central Texas! I see a lot of folks are catching up on yard work and home improvements. I know the contractors I ‘ve talked to are sure happy about not sweating to death just from stepping out of their houses! But does this mean that we should be lured into believing that the venomous snakes are not active right now? It does not!

I have seen people share a post that gives the seasons that snakes are not out at this time of year. In my experience of almost 38 years, I’d say ignore that and pretend that even when there is ice on the ground, you could find a snake.

Just be vigilant, and then you won’t have to retrain yourself this spring. Don’t get lulled into security because some zoologist somewhere says they are “less likely” to be active. That’s the key phrase there, “less likely.” That doesn’t mean there is a 0% chance of finding them. That’s especially true if you’re moving leaves, debris, or climbing under a house where it is probably sort of warm.

Continue reading “Guest Blogger: Are You Ever Safe from Snakes? No.”

Who, Me? Hypochondriac? Paranoid?

What in the world would lead me to say this? Well, things have just been a bit…unbalanced this week. I’ve felt a little “off” all week, and have done some really goofy things that aren’t like me.

This is the can of delicious water that didn’t want to go in my mouth.

The biggest example is suddenly forgetting how to drink a beverage. I was sitting in my living room, watching television or reading, and I was really thirsty for that cold, fresh lemon-flavored water I’d gotten out of the refrigerator. So, while still focused on my other task, I picked it up and briskly poured it into my lap.

That certainly surprised the dog. But, really, I forgot how to put a drink to my lips? It’s like my body had a glitch. Of course, once that happened, I’ve been alert to any other motor-skills issues, so when I trip and almost fall on a tiny raised part of a sidewalk, drop what I’m carrying, etc., I think, “Oh no, I’m getting some disease.”

Vlassic took to his (my) bed to recover from my oddness.
Continue reading “Who, Me? Hypochondriac? Paranoid?”

Friendship Is HARD

Hey, kind readers, thanks for all of your feedback on yesterday’s post about friendship and jealousy. You all gave me a lot to think about, and the BEST part was finding out I’m not alone in having difficulty becoming a member of a group of friends. It’s important to think about it, and I realize I do it a lot. I even wrote that “friend” is my favorite word back in May!

Pickle is one of those who like people, but chooses her intimates carefully. By the way, she went to the vet and is all healthy! 9.9 pounds of vigor.

A couple of comments made me think about WHY some of us have this issue. My son’s partner realizes she has some issues being in groups, thanks to her autism symptoms, which make forming friendships difficult for her, but make her value her real friends even more (I am happy she is MY friend!). She’s not alone. Many of us note that forming friendships is hard due to personality challenges. Some of us are shy; others aren’t great at (or fond of) the kind of bonding but non-substantive conversations that lead to deeper friendships. [Insert your own reasons here.]

A neighbor texted me wondering if people even realize I want to be their friend. I found that amusing/ironic, since this was someone I want to be friends with and have no idea if they realize it. The point was that sometimes people appear to others as if they have some kind of boundary or other presentation that makes them appear to want to keep their distance. Aha! That was an insight to me. Maybe people misinterpret my “resting hermit face” for not wanting to socialize. And maybe I misinterpret others, too!

Continue reading “Friendship Is HARD”

Jealousy and Friendship

Here’s a fact about me (I know you were dying to read one): I’ve never had many close friends. Let me explain. I always have a few people I can talk to and do stuff with. But I think I always wanted to have a group of close friends who could get together and talk, travel, and share experiences. The couple of times I’ve tried that have made it clear in no uncertain terms that I’m not cut out to do that and will end up being “that member” that everyone talks about behind their back and wishes would stop showing up (hello, yarn store clique; I still like many of you as individuals). No wonder I have so much sympathy for the pariahs in my social circle and keep doing my best to be kind to them.

Why is this relevant?

Well, over the past weekend, I watched as a couple of groups of people from work went on fabulous trips and had fabulous times together. I found myself wishing I could go along. These are friend groups I tried to be in, but didn’t fit in. Yep, I had a bit o’ jealousy. I’ve always wanted to be a member of a close group of friends that were drawn together because of shared bonds, not because they are members of the same club or somehow paid to be together.

How I imagine all these groups of close friends are, out having their adventures. All white, young, and lanky. This is not real life. Photo: @sashapritchard via Twenty20

Maybe this all stemmed from when I was a kid growing up, when our neighborhood was a merry band of young folks who did everything together, regardless of our differences and actually cared about each other (I feel warm when I remember how the autistic child, Gay, came along with us wherever she could, and stood on the sidelines, rocking back and forth, but a part of the group; of course we had never heard of autism).

Here’s what a large group of MY friends and acquaintances looks like. Much more varied. Photo by Rae Schopp.
Continue reading “Jealousy and Friendship”
The Lost Kerryman

...no longer lost in the fog

Joys Of Creating

crafts, hobbies, gardening & nonsense

sara annon

seeking the middle path

Tonya's Tall Tales

My life with horses, bunnies, chickens, ducks, and cows.

rfljenksy - Practicing Simplicity

Legendary Whining and Dining World Tour.

The Backyard Horse Blog

All about keeping horses at home

Hazel's Animal Adventures

My life on the ranch.

Katie Zapfel

Children's book author. Mom blogger.

365 Knit Socks

I knit a lot of socks

recoveringpornaddictcom.wordpress.com/

Coach, author and educator

The daily addict

The daily life of an addict in recovery

Happy Heidi's Happenings

My life in the country.

BrownesPups

A family of dog lovers, owners & breeders since 2015

The Adventures of a Mountain Coward

panic-stricken mountain adventuring!

Something Over Tea

Scribbles from my notebook

The Renegade Press

Tales from the mouth of a wolf

Heccateisis's Blog

Just another WordPress.com weblog

The Upstate Gardener

The Upstate Gardening blog with Gardening Information, Recipies, Home Improvement Ideas, and Crafts Projects to make your life more beautiful and healthy.

Nature And Photography

Bring Nature Into Life

AT PATHO

no streetlights, just star light

Words and Stitches

woolgathering at its best

The Grief Reality

Normalising the conversation about Grief.

iRoseStudios.com

Art Studio Dumfriesshire

The Creative Pixie

eat up some crafty goodness with this creative mama

Writings of a Furious Woman

My thoughts, sentiments, and scribbles on womanhood

Yeshua's Child Art

Art that Expresses the Heart

Chicken Coop Plans

Build Your Chicken a Home

Writing about...Writing

Some coffee, a keyboard and my soul! My first true friends!

Leaf And Twig

Where observation and imagination meet nature in poetry.

Hidemi’s Rambling by Hidemi Woods

Singer, Songwriter and Author from Kyoto, Japan.

Cathartic Tendencies

motivational posts, rants, and stories!

TotallyTexasGifts.com

Featuring Fine Arts & Crafts created and sold by Texans

Seasons As My Teacher

Truth Written In The Wind

claudiajustsaying

Aging & Attitude

The Tragedy Kween

A boisterous introvert illustrating her way through life.