Flea Market ..

The Cowboy and I wanted to get out of town yesterday and just enjoy the day together .. Summer has finally come to an end, at least the hectic pace we had both been keeping and this weekend and the next few are welcome reprieve.

We jumped in the car and headed west about an hour to Mineral Point, not sure what all we would find but a Fall Art Tour was underway.  The small town boasts beautiful architecture, great storefronts, artists, writers, potters .. and as we discovered upon leaving the highway, a great flea market.

The first booth we walked up to was the find of the day.  Helping us load one of the most beautiful old trunks we’ve ever seen (for the guest room or possibly a prop for photos) into the car ..

Great finds numbers 2, 3 & 4 ..

A little olive oil on this baby .. shine it right up.

There happen to be three items in this photo that will be going under the Christmas tree this year.  Cool things because they’re cool.  But extra cool because, BARGAIN.  And, RECYCLE.

One thing we found entertaining but did not leave with ..

The simple things ..

We rounded the corner after coming up the stairs to the back door the other night, talking about the day, laughing and dodging the rain ..

When I see .. (sorry not great photos but was trying to avoid getting camera soaked in the rain)


We had been of our bottled water for almost two weeks and the chunks of what look like metal or rock that flow out of our faucet aren’t really what I want to be guzzling down after a run in the morning .. or making coffee with.  Or giving my daughter a glass of to drink each night.

I know we still have some of the best, most clean drinking water in the world and I appreciate that for all it is .. but the bottled water that comes to our doorstep about once/month is such a beautiful, delicious sight ..

And while the water was enough to have me and us grinning with delight in and of itself ..

I catch a glimpse of something else lush and green peering out from behind the screen door my daughter had already opened to get us out of the rain ..


Some of the most beautiful, gargantuan beets I have ever seen .. set atop the rail of our porch.  Straight from the garden and the neighbors CSA basket earlier that day.

Such simple things.  What beautiful gifts.


Stunning fall color ..

Been a rainy week here in Wisconsin and so many of the leaves are now off the trees.

But the dry summer apparently made for some stunning fall color and I so love how beautiful the fully in tact (versus the brown mushed up) fallen leaves look in the rain.

Grabbed this while on a run the other morning.

The entire street I was on that morning was covered with leaves similar to this one.  The scene was as stunning on the ground as the leaves had been only hours before, barely dangling yet from their branches, holding onto one more day of life before that strong, crisp wind brought them down.



October 11, 2012.

My beautiful sister posted this online last night…

She had no idea how profound a verse it would be to carry with me into the day today.

Listen to advice and accept discipline, and at the end you will be counted among the wise. Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.

Proverbs 19:20-21

It’s the little things ..

Sometimes it’s a smile.  Or a ray of sunshine.  Or a hug from your child.  Or husband.  Or a song.

This morning ..


It was this.

Often this fall, on the last leg of my jog through our neighborhood, there is a table sitting out with fresh tomatoes.  Free for whomever shall come along and appreciate them.

I on occasion will grab one red and one yellow because my crop for some reason this year, has yet to turn.  And I fear it is all but too late for them to be anything but green.  And I so enjoy fresh sliced tomatoes.

I grabbed one of each again this morning.  And smiled as I jogged the last leg of our morning run, home.

I’m pretty sure the dog did too.


Good ‘Ol Joe Hunter Hancock.


“He’s been a great horse,” the Cowboy says tonight as we’re talking about him.

He’s been steady, strong, reliable.  Lot different than when I bought him.  Bought him from a friend back in 2005 and they were afraid of him.  All he wanted to do was buck and be snorty on the ground.”  But the Cowboy thought he was super cool looking and really smart.  

He kept him. 

Wessington Springs.

“After I got him, I went and rode with one of the best working cow horse trainers in the country, the guy is legendary.”

He’s gone on to become PRCA two-time Heel Horse of the Year, Four-time Minnesota Rodeo Heel Horse of the Year..

Badlands Circuit Finals.

Joe has since, become the horse everyone wants to ride.  Guests.  The kids.


But with the Cowboy essentially off the rodeo circuit for now, focusing on being a good dad and husband as well .. Joe’s been standing .. a lot .. out in the pasture.

And it’s killed the Cowboy to know he’s capable of so much more.

After years of inquiries into whether or not he’d ever sell Joe.. Joe this week, goes to a new home.  A great home.  One where he will be put to good use.

But we are all so very sad to see him go.

The Best Possible Thing ..

We went to the most wonderful dinner last night at our friends vineyard ..

It was a beautiful night filled with old friends and new ..

And at the end of the night, a couple we had talked with at length said to us as ..

“Enjoy your life, it is the best possible thing you can do.”




One second earlier ..

I just happened looked at the clock this morning as I was bustling about the apartment helping the Cowboy gather up his things .. to head again for his/our SD home ..

It struck me, that it was about the exact same moment a week ago .. we had the accident.

A moment I haven’t been able to shake.

We were on our way to school Monday morning, comfortably early and enjoying the moment.  We turned down a side street we often will take, proceeding slowly and remarkably with no distractions other than the conversation ..

A flash of something appeared no sooner than we heard whatever it was, hit the car.

“What was that, mom?  What was that?” my daughter asks in a panic.

I had slammed on the brakes and had little idea what it was until I looked in my rear view mirror.

I saw a young girl, picking up her bike.  She didn’t seen me coming and ran a stop sign.  She and a friend had also been on their way to school.

I ran back to the scene.  The young girl already up, apologizing and telling me she was fine.  Repeatedly.  Embarrassed, I think and probably in shock.

“Are you sure,” I ask.  Also, repeatedly.  And we both started to cry.

I was grateful she was okay, stunned at what had just happened and at the same time, frustrated she could have been so disrespectful of the stop sign, only because it could have just cost her, her life.


One second earlier was all I could think, if she were one second earlier, or had I braked seeing her coming this could have been a very different outcome.  One that makes me shudder each time the vision crosses my mind.

I haven’t been able to shake it.  And I have felt awful even thinking about the damage to my car.  How could that possibly be important in the grand scheme of things ..

A few days later .. on our way to school again, we saw the same two girls, this time taking another route to school but both back on their bikes.

Please.  Be safe girls.


Hug your kids.  Remind them it is imperative they, like anyone else using the road, follow the rules of the road.  A stop sign means stop, even if it doesn’t look like there is any traffic coming.  Especially if the oncoming traffic has the right of way.  We can all try and keep an eye out for each other but sometimes those safety nets fail.  And, never a skeptic of helmets but never one to always wear one either, I am now a believer.

Will Play for Chili ..

Seems many of the gigs the band has played lately ..




.. have revolved around food.


Chili cook-off’s .. rib competitions .. salsa throwdowns.




Grateful part of the pay often tends to be a taste of everything being served up and a pretty spectacular view of everyone enjoying it

Morning meditation …

I try and start each day with a walk or a run.  Mainly, because the dog needs to go out.  But also because, when I make time, I want and need the exercise.  That, and the meditation that time allows me.

I try then, during those few minutes when I am not scooping up dog poop into a little baggie, to spend some time alone with myself and God.

I give thanks for the crisp, fresh air and sunshine or the raindrops or snow or wind that feel incredible on my face.  For being able to hear the sound of my feet gently striking the pavement.  For my physical health and the ability to even be out and moving like I am.  For my dog who makes me laugh as she grabs her leash in her mouth each morning, talking to me, so excited to be out for a run.  Or just out.

I pray family and friends and the world know peace and health and safe travels for the day, wherever their journey may be taking them.  And I breathe deep, remembering my shoulders shouldn’t be at ear level.  And I reflect on all of the challenges before me.  And us.  And I ask for guidance.  And insight.  And clarity.  And to always be open to learning whatever it is I still need to learn.

God asks no man whether he will accept life.  That is not the choice.  You must take it.  The only question is how.  ~  Henry Ward Beecher.

It’s not always easy to take that time.  And sometimes, depending on the situation, it truly is a challenge to give it over to God.

When I reflect on those kind of days, and there have been a few more than usual as of late .. those are the nights, I set my shoes by the door, ready for the morning.