Monday, May 26, 2014

old fashion lawn mower

Before BC takes off for most of the summer, to build a straw bale house in Moab, Utah, he has a list of farm chores to get done. One of which is cutting a fire break in the back field. So instead of renting a large mower tough enough to get the job done- he borrowed the neighbors horse.
Beach giving Honey-Bear a check-up.
Look, it comes with horse flies.
Honey-Bear is a retired barrel racer with a bit of a bad leg. It requires icing. And ginger snaps.  
Yep, BC makes a fine good old country vet.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014


Inside my head it is oddly quiet. Almost unnervingly so.
I needed to get out.
This time of year especially I lean towards the foothills.  It is where my heart lingers. Where my mind drifts. The shoreline trail.
It is where BC and I really fell in love. Where I took my sister for the last hike we would ever take together. Where my dogs run free. Where for the first time my best friend let his guard down. Where weather and season change nothing. 
It is my measure of how I am doing. 
Here I have stepped on a rattle snake, pet a tarantula, hovered over a huge wolf spider without freaking out, followed a bobcat, ran over a squirrel, split open my knee because I was distracted by a rabbit, and wandered into a herd of deer. 
I have run these trails sick, well, angry, in love, in the rain, the snow, in 110 degrees...
And in my dreams I walk the paths seeking their mountain shelter.
Even the fictional characters of my writings visit here.
It is the place where I find myself.  
Because sometime you have to go out to to be able to look in.

Sunday, May 18, 2014


Knowing what I was facing, plank jacks, squat thrusts, mountain climbers, crow push ups, reengage rows... I knew the wrist that had been giving out during regular push-ups was not going to make it through. I turned to the sports expert in our house: 10 yr old Beach. Patiently she asked me questions about where and what hurt. Then set to expertly wrapping my wrist for me.

I love us.
Her and I.
Everything about the 2 of us makes me happy.

I can honestly say she is the only person I have every truly wanted to be strong for- not defiant or complacent, not even motherly, just flat out strong.

After mommy does crossfit we had a day planned. Biking to the dollar shop for a few craft and cleaning items. Baking pumpkin goodies. Biking to the 9th West Farmers Market. Walking the garden in search of dancing white fairy moths. Playing basketball in an empty schoolyard.

If crossfit on a bum wrist sounds precarious you haven't had the joy of biking in traffic with a kid who can't *see*. Let's just say it is intense. If she bikes in front of me I can't block (yes, block) or see for her. If she bikes behind me I can't see her. I spend the whole ride looking backwards and I myself am not a strong biker. AND that is just how I feel about. After all, I am the one who can see. I don't have to place my trust in someone else to guide me. I know I would never be able to do that. I would never be that brave.

But we made our way to the store, sort of like making it through a spook alley. It is fun and scary and leaves you wondering were we really ever in danger?

She watched our bikes while I ran in for my list. We had forgot our bike lock. I realized the mistake crossing the first intersection but that is just how overwhelming biking with her is- I didn't dare go back and do the whole street over. I thought that would be pushing our luck.

After I went in I traded Beach places handing her 5 dollars. Her list: craft sticks, water balloons, and a treat. She wasn't gone too long but when she came back she was still holding the cash.
"Mom, I don't feel good." She said handing back the money.

She was hot and her stomach was hurting. When I asked her if she wanted me to call her dad to come pick her up she said yes.

BC home working on the garage dropped everything and came right over. No questions. If Beach is asking for help there is a good reason. That is the thing about Beach. The core of who she is is so solid. Not only does it make her strong it makes her magnetic and giant. Looking at her sitting on the ground I couldn't help but to be baffled by whatever power had gotten her that far. She was truly very sick.

BC pulled up and we loaded her and her bike in the van. I had bought her Pepsi and gave her orders to go to her room with a big just-in-case-pot and to lay down. I would be home in a minute.I was going to finish our ride for us.

Most often I am on the sidelines of her life cheering her on but as the van pulled slowly through the tangled parking lots of the strip mall, me on my bike I zipped out ahead. They passed me on the long straight road heading home.  Beach's face pressed against the window, her little, capable hands waving.

Pumpkin cookies and the echos of a basketball on asphalt may have to wait for another day.

She is the coolest kid I know.