Archives

Gratitude For Eight Years On WordPress

anniversary-2x

I got a note from WordPress today telling me that eight years ago today, I began my blog.  It doesn’t seem that I have been writing for eight years to you all, but I’m assuming WordPress knows what it’s talking about, don’t you think?  Ah, the benefits of blogging!

In eight years, much has changed in my life.  My initial focus was to help other women battling cancer, specifically breast cancer as I endured it myself and I am still here.  But as life developed, I have written about other subjects too including:  poetry, pets, children, parents, relationships, Mother Nature, horseback riding, Alzheimer’s and Dementia, holidays, angels, spirituality, religion, Rabbit, Rabbit, photography, SendOutCards, amazing books and movies, inspirational quotes, life in general and even death because I had first hand experience with all of those topics.  While I was enduring hardships, you were all there for me with your loving support and I am ever grateful.  I wrote to share my experiences in hopes that I would be able to help someone else along that path.

I am ever grateful for the loving connections that have evolved through our blogging community which we have grown through our writings and by reaching out in kindness, generosity and always with a loving heart.  Friendships have blossomed through our writings that have cemented many of us soul to soul in miraculous ways.  From WordPress comments to emails to actual phone calls, I can count many deep friendships which span the world now for which I am honored to be a part of in this lifetime – and yet, we have never met face to face.  But the love is there, without ever being in each other’s physical presence.

It’s so interesting to me that I have yet to meet anyone face to face that I met through blogging and yet I count many of you as true friends.  What a gift this Presents of Presence has been for me!  I pray that you feel the same way – that my writings, my comments and my love for all of you shines its heartlight and helps to raise the energetic vibrations of this world’s energy to encourage peace, love, compassion and understanding along with connections to all.

May your heart be lifted today and may your heartlight shine for all to see, for I see you out there dearest friends and I am ever grateful, as always, for our connections.

Shine On!

xo

Advertisements

Trotting With Ty

IMG_2364

This is Ty and me at the end of our last lesson.  We trotted together for the first time which was a bit unnerving to me as he’s part draft horse and part thoroughbred and 16.3 hands which, believe me, is big!  But what a sweet fella!

I’m learning to ride English and right now, I’m learning to post while trotting while loosely holding onto the reins and hanging onto the saddle!  I’m working on rhythmically posting as Ty’s trotting in a circle on a lead held by my teacher.  Thank goodness she’s there to guide me and him as we work together.  I’m happy to say that our goal was accomplished a few times, but I think I still have a long way to go.  But I’m getting there which is good.

I haven’t given up riding Sam or Charlie.  It just seems that Ty has a smoother gait while trotting which helps when you’re learning to post.  I love how each horse is different and has his own quirks like people do.  It makes for interesting connections!  And as you can tell, my smile is always so big when I am at the farm after a lesson!  There’s something so healing about riding horses.  Their loving natures make my heart sing!  Do you feel the same way?

Do you ride English or Western?  I’ve trailed ridden Western years ago which I enjoyed.  I wonder if I try to ride Western again on a trail will it be hard because it’s so different?  Any horse people out there?  Please share your experiences!  Thank you!

Shine On!

xo

Miraculous Moment

IMG_0996_Moment

Sweet Sam and me after our first trot together!

I had a miraculous moment with Sam recently.  I hadn’t been riding in awhile and when I got back in the saddle on Sam, I needed a few minutes to remember.  You know what I mean?  Literally, I had to get my frame of mind back on the horse.  Pardon the puns, but they were so easy! LOL

I began my lesson as per usual, walking and guiding Sam around the paddock.  Keeping my heels down, body upright and core tightened as I took my cues from my instructor Sasha.  After a nice warmup, I could feel the tension in my hands still, but because it was chilly, I figured it was just me, which it was – me – still not trusting myself enough nor Sam.  So Sasha gave me a surprise which I can only liken to opening a big unexpected present on Christmas morning – and you know how much I love Christmas morning!

Sasha took away all of my control.  Putting Sam on a lead and taking away my reins, we rode in circles.  Holding on to the saddle for dear life at first and getting my balance.  I admit, I was scared.  Then Sasha had me let go of one hand on the saddle.  Deep breath in, I released my right hand and put it out beside me.  I wobbled at first, still walking in circles and then Sasha commanded both hands.  Deep breath in, exhaled and let go.  We went through a series of exercises all the while I was riding without reins and feeling more and more comfortable in my saddle on Sam.  He was a perfect gentleman and it clicked!  Suddenly it was like – I got this!  I’m utterly, wonderfully comfortable sitting on this sweet horse and I felt as if we were one!  It was such a miraculous feeling of profound centeredness and tranquility and euphoria!  Giggling with child-like wonder, I proudly sat up straight, fully comfortable in the saddle in that special moment with a big happy grin on my face as we bonded!

IMG_0994

Triumphantly Sam and I are bonding!  Look Ma!  No hands!

Sasha then informed me that we were going to trot a bit.  My heart leapt at the exciting prospect, but a little anxiety crept in.  I knew in my heart that I had full trust in both Sasha and Sam, so I agreed (not like Sasha would have let me back out though which is what I really like about her!)

Hands back on the saddle and Sam began to trot in a circle and with sheer delight, I was euphoric!  In a big wave of gratitude, my soul was flying, bonded with Sam.  As one, we trotted for the first time together in a circle!  We slowed to walk again and I rested my hands on my thighs to show Sasha my newfound balance.  Then we trotted again and I was on Cloud 9!    A first for me in so many ways as a wave of healing engulfed me.  Perhaps you won’t understand, but it was like a clearing for me in many ways, both personal and relative to my life.  It was as if all the debris of past broken trust had been swept away and a newness full of hope and utterly centered healing trust was returned to me.  Trust in myself, trust in Sam and Sasha and finally, trust in God and in the Universe!

Words can’t describe the feelings I’ve had since that moment and perhaps I sound silly to you, but to me it was a miraculous moment that I wanted to remember, so I am blogging about it.

After my lesson, Sam and I bonded for awhile.  Nuzzling and talking with him afterwards was so lovely.  It was as if we understood each other.  I gave him treats as he snuggled into me.  Even after I returned him to his stall, I was hesitant to leave him and I think he was enjoying me too as instead of going to eat, he stayed at the doorway, letting me know in no uncertain terms that he wanted to continue our time together.  So, I hung around with him, talking and petting his velvet face with him affectionately snuggling into me and making me laugh with his antics!

IMG_2187

Sam had me giggling when I took the photo and accidentally cropped myself out! But see his sweet face? Pure love!

When I left the barn, I walked to my car happily as I usually do, but there was a knowing in me that I haven’t felt in a long time.  When I got to the gate of the farm to leave, my trusty horse friends were there to greet me.  But even they were warmer with their welcomes.  It was as if telepathically Sam had told them of our riding experience.  I ended up spending extra time petting them too, reluctant to leave these amazing creatures whose love was filling my soul with peace and trust.

IMG_2191

One of the ‘gatekeepers’ – I don’t know this guy’s name, but he is so affectionate! All he wanted was for me to keep petting his velvet nose and talk with him! He kept following me!

IMG_2199

Here’s sweet Ely who always greets me when I arrive at the gate to the farm. He couldn’t get enough petting yesterday either – and frankly neither could I!

IMG_2194

Mr. Chips is more timid, but he too was interested in getting some affection yesterday before I left!

I remind myself that healing comes when we are ready to embrace it and that Divine Timing has all the answers.  We just have to be open to the opportunities of letting go and letting God and the Universe to help us to heal.  Mother Nature’s creatures innately help us when we trust and have faith.

Thanks for reading my post today.  I know I was long-winded and maybe not even making sense to you, but to me, it was a profoundly important moment that I wanted to share.

Shine On!

xo

Sam and Me

IMG_0743

This is Sam and me!

Charlie’s foot is bothering him so now I’m riding Sam who is even bigger than Charlie, but he’s a smoother ride and starts out our lesson walking very slowly.  Charlie on the other hand is a bit more spirited out of the gate and harder to balance on so changing to Sam whose gait is smoother was a good change for now.  I am hoping Charlie heals soon though because he has a special place in my heart.

As I was grooming Sam, he sensed my hesitation in cleaning a little bit of mud off of his face.  He stood patiently still as I groomed his body before riding.  But when I got to his face, he gave me such a look that it stopped me in my tracks.  I’m short, 5″2′ tall so he’s really big to me.  With every brush, I showed it to him before I groomed him.  I thought it was only fair that he should know what I was doing.  But being a seasoned veteran of lessons and of newbies like me, it didn’t faze him in the least.  Until I got to his face.

I was talking with him and commenting how he had a bit of mud on his face.  At one point, he turned to face me and stared hard into my face.  Those big eyes (you know they are the size of golf balls!) looked at me, but instead of seeing the full brown eye, I saw part of the whites of his eyes as he looked at me.  I was tentative and a little scared for some reason.  He’s so big that I got frightened even though he wasn’t doing anything but looking at me from the side.  I felt a pulse of insecurity which was on my part and stepped back.  Even as I write this, I only know that it was a significant moment because my fear was there.  Fear of what I’ve asked myself,  but there’s been so significant response.  Maybe I thought he was going to bite me?  I don’t know for sure because I’ve been told he’s not a biter.  But I didn’t know that then.

So I stepped back and asked one of the girls nearby to help me get the mud off of his face.  She calmly came over and brushed him, talking with him as I had done.  When she was finished, he seemed to look at me as if to say, Man up little girl and face your fears because I’m not scary.

I walked into the paddock to mount him and then we started to walk, but he stopped and wouldn’t move.  It was like he was testing me, not in a belligerent way, but in a have courage, do what we’re supposed to do and tell me what you want.  It took a good few minutes of him standing stoically before he began to walk (after my trainer clucked to him multiple times and I used my legs to urge him to begin walking).  Then he finally started.

Balancing on a horse was to me like playing the game Twister.  Reins at a certain height, put your heels down, keep your legs relaxed and not on his shoulders, sit up straight, hold in your core, but stay relaxed!  Yikes!  It’s hard work!  I tried (again!) the 2 point position that is the precursor to posting, but I was failing miserably even though Sam was so patient and gentle.  So my trainer took me off Sam and rode him, showing me what I wasn’t getting on my own.  What a difference that made!!

When I got back on Sam, because I could actually SEE what she meant, I was so much more comfortable and it showed!  I was able to keep the 2 point position correctly and for longer even though my ab muscles were getting a workout.  Sam, true to form, flowed with my learning curve, staying the course and making it easier for me to balance and concentrate on my form.

At the end of the lesson, for which once I finally was understanding the whole form thing, I begged to have another 1/2 hour because I felt in the zone!  But there was another rider’s lesson after me.  So when I dismounted, Sam and I had a few minutes alone while I waited for the next rider to come into the paddock.

I stood by Sam’s head and talked with him as we waited.  I’m probably being silly here, but the tears are flowing as I type.  Maybe I’m overly sensitive, but as I was thanking him for all that we’d accomplished today, he nestled his head onto my shoulder and into my neck so softly as if to comfort me and say See, we’ve got this you and me.  We’re a team and you can trust me and yourself.  He gazed into my eyes and I melted with love for him, bravely kissing his face and petting him with so much appreciation and love.  He nuzzled me again, rubbing his face onto mine as I cooed to him.  It was such a magical moment for me.  Truly.  What I’m writing sounds so hollow because it was so much more.  It was as if there were a breakthrough in healing for me and Sam helped me so much.

When the next rider came to take Sam, I kissed him good bye and thanked him.  As I passed some people who had been watching, they said they didn’t know Sam was such an affectionate horse.  I smiled and nodded because I had tears in my eyes, tears of healing and gratitude for my horse angel Sam.

Shine On!

xo

A Book Lover’s Tag

bookloverstag

I just saw a lovely post over on Ivon Prefontaine’s blog called A Book Lover’s Tag  and it inspired me to answer the questions and post them here and give a call out to all of you book lovers who have been on this journey with the book tour for Jay.  This was my post contribution for Jay’s debut novel #Watching Glass Shatter!  I’m not nominating anyone in particular, but if you feel so inclined, please let me know you did it as I’d love to read your responses!

  1. Do you have a favorite place to read? Yes, I like to read in bed or on the couch.
  2. Do you use bookmarks or random pieces of paper? I use random pieces of paper if it’s a real book.  If not, then I use the bookmarks on the kindle.
  3. Do you eat or drink while you read? Not usually.
  4. Do you listen to music or watch TV? No, I like to read in silence.
  5. Do you read one book or several at a time? If I’m power-reading (meaning so into the book I can’t put it down) like I was with Jay’s book, then it’s one at a time.  But I enjoy reading a few books at a time too.
  6. Do you prefer reading at home or elsewhere? I will take the kindle on trips with me, but normally, I just read at home.
  7. Do you read silently or out loud? I read silently.
  8. Do you read ahead or skip about? I read straight through the book.  I never like to skip about or read ahead.
  9. Do you break the spine or treat it like new? I usually don’t break the spine and I tend to treat the book well so that I can pass it along in good shape.
  10. Do you write in books? If it’s a favorite self-help book, then I will turn down pages or maybe even underline.  But for the most part, I don’t mark them up.
  11. What books are you reading now? I am reading The Tao of Equus:  A Woman’s Journey of Healing & Transformation Through The Way Of The Horse by Linda Kohanov on my kindle.  Thanks Karel at Peace With My Life for the suggestion.
  12. What is your childhood favorite book? The Secret Garden comes to mind as well as Gone With The Wind which my best friend read to me in sixth grade when I was home sick for awhile.  For children’s books, Goodnight Moon and Dr. Seuss’ books.
  13. What is your favorite book of all time?  Oh my, I don’t think I have a true absolute favorite book – maybe Gone With The Wind if I had to choose one.  But I have many books that I enjoy re-reading.  The authors Louise Hay, Dr. Wayne Dyer, Doreen Virtue, Tosha Silver, Florence Scovel Shinn and many others come to mind as favorites that I can reread at leisure when I need a little pick me up!  I also like the romance author Kaitlin O’Riley’s many historical romance novels.

Thanks for playing along and reading my post!  I love to read other people’s responses so feel free to answer the questions in a post and let me know so I can visit you too!

Shine On!

xo

P.S.  The Daily Prompt’s HONK made me think of making a bumper sticker!  What do you think of mine?

honk

 

Bonding With Charlie

IMG_1961

A loving bond is forming with Charlie.

My third horseback riding lesson and I’m hooked on horses!  Between Sam and Charlie, I can’t choose between them although I will say that even though Sam is bigger, I think he’s a bit easier to ride because he’s, dare I say it?, not as energetic as Charlie.  Charlie, on the other hand, has a faster gait so I have to keep my balance more in check, but that’s how you learn to ride, right?

I likened it to gymnastics at my last lesson because it’s all about balance in the saddle.  I am learning to ride English which means there’s no horn to hold onto on the saddle.  In most movies, I saw the horn and thought of it as a safety handle to keep me in the saddle.  Guess that’s not going to happen for me.  LOL

Oh, so much to learn and to experience!  Sigh…and big, wide grin.

So grateful for the healing of horses!

Enjoy your day dear friends!  Anyone else horseback riding?

Shine On!

xo

 

 

My New Neighborhood

IMG_2008

The gate to my new neighborhood! Welcome home!

I have new neighbors.  Well, I call them my neighbors because I’m new in the neighborhood at the farm.  And no, I don’t live at the horse farm, but I would love it if I did!  Everyone is so friendly at the barn.  It’s amazing to me how people say hello and talk with you.  Even the seasoned riders patiently explain when I ask about something or for help when I’m unsure.  Not that my teacher isn’t there instructing me, but when I hang around for a little bit after my lesson just enjoying the peace within the barn, the atmosphere is so soothing!

It’s truly magical to me, this new adventure I’ve begun.  New smells, new experiences, new people, and learning something new – how to ride, how to groom and how to understand those giant beasts of burden with the gentle loving eyes.  It’s just lovely!

I can see how grooming is therapeutic for the horse and for me.  It connects us in a  spiritual way and it shows him that I care.  I’m back with Charlie these days, having only ridden Sam once and Charlie numerous times now.

MCUY2086

Charlie and me on a sunny fall day!

Chock full of new experiences, I am loving  and living my dream of riding!  Let me introduce you to some of the neighbors!   For instance, at the gate, there’s Ely, who welcomes all who enter.  He’s even been so bold as to try to get his nose in my car, looking for cookies (treats)!  I keep forgetting to bring him a treat so I just pet his velvet nose and coo to him.

IMG_2009

Ely coming to see what I have for him!

IMG_2003

Mr. Chips following Ely’s lead. Hey Lady, got any cookies for me?

IMG_2006

Ely giving me the look since I had no cookies to give him! LOL

Ely’s got a new neighbor too.  Mr. Chips who, like me, is a newcomer to the barn.  He’s learning rapidly from Ely!  What a cute pair!

Thanks for stopping by to meet the new neighbors in my life! I am so grateful for life’s new experiences.  I hope you have a lovely Friday!

Shine On!

xo