Monday, January 30, 2012

Charcoal and Cows

It was a beautiful day in Flyover we went hiking. 

While I was in Virginia helping my daughter with her beautiful twins, our good friend Mr Williams took my husband out to find some missing cows.  Mr Williams is a long-time resident of Flyover Country.  He's lived here all of the over 80 years of his life (except for a stint in the US military).  I love to ride horses with him, and the "excuse" he usually uses to ride is that he has to check on cows, or open gates, or take salt out for them.  Since it's winter, he doesn't ride horses, but still has to go check on his cows.  The best thing about going anywhere with Mr Williams is that he tells stories; about Flyover Country, about the pioneers and people who settled here, and about the Native Americans who were here before.  He knows all the stories, and it's so entertaining (and informative) to listen to him. 

So, about week or so ago, Mr Williams asked my man to go with him.  They rode around in Mr William's pickup, looking for cows and telling stories.  I'm so jealous!  Anyway, Mr Williams showed my husband one of the places where the pioneers, the "old-timers" who settled Flyover Country built a charcoal oven. Since it was so beautiful out today, we hiked up to the site of the oven. 

Although the roof has fallen in, it's really in pretty good shape; it's amazing what those "old-timers" could do.  I'm not certain what they used the oven for, or even if they made charcoal in the oven (although that's what it seemed like it was designed to do and there was some evidence of charcoal on the ground outside).  It was pretty neat to see the oven, and the countryside around it was beautiful. 

Oh yeah....we even found one of Mr William's missing cows.....

Saturday, January 28, 2012


Home.  If you really think about it the concept of "Home" is a powerful concept.  It carries with it all kinds of emotions, all kinds of memories, all kinds of baggage (both good and not-so-good). 

My dad was in the military, so I grew up in a lot of different places.  I had a lot of different "homes," but none of them ever kept a place in my heart...not really.  There were really great things about all the different places I lived as a kid, and my family did things to make most of the places fun, with good memories attached; but none those places was really "home."  That place where your heart yearns to return. 

When I got married and went out on my own, I tried to adopt the place my first husband grew up as "home."  It worked to a degree.  It was the place where my folks lived after my dad retired from the military.  It was where my first husband's heart was, and where his childhood friends and memories were.  I did, and do, love that place and love to visit there.  It's beautiful and the people there are special to me; especially (of course) my parents and siblings who still live there.  But it never, quite, became "home."  Since I was military, we travelled and lived in a lot of different places, and I tried to make a home for my family in each of them; but none of them became that one place where my heart wanted to be. 

For me, there has always only been one place that has touched my soul, where my spirits rise when I arrive, where I feel relaxed and more "me" than anywhere else.  Flyover Country.  When I was a kid, this is the place where we would come for one or two weeks each summer to visit with my grandparents.  I had friends here, with whom I could pick up the prior summer's conversation and friendship without pause.  I loved visiting here.  I loved the beauty of the place, the history, and the people.   I still do.  I've chosen to live here, even though it's rural and remote.  (Maybe, though, that's part of the draw for me.)  I've chosen to live here, even though there are some inconveniences.  I've chosen to live here, because it's home.  I'm so fortunate that my husband loves this place as much as I do.  

I'm so fortunate that he has chosen to adopt my home as his own.  They say that, "home is where the heart is."  For me, on many different levels, my home is here:  in Flyover Country with my man. 

Saturday, January 21, 2012

There's no place like home.....

I've been away from home for 16 days.  I've loved being here with my daughter and her family.  I've loved seeing my other daughter and her husband, at least for a little bit.  I've loved being able to play with Travis, Alyssa and (for a bit) Corie.  I am so happy to have the chance to get acquainted with the two new babies, and to be able to help my daughter adjust to twins in the family.  I'm blessed, and I know it.  But....

I'm ready to go home.  This is the longest I've been away from my husband since we found each other (again).  I have to say that I don't like it.  I miss him.  I used to think that I was very independent.  To my surprise, I've found out that I'm not.  I'm a lot more dependent, on him, that I ever thought I was.  Strange, that.

I've also found out that I love being home; my home.  Where my heart is.  Where my spirits soar when I look outside and see the beauty that is "Flyover Country."  Where I can relax and just "be."  Where I feel joy.  Where my man is....that's home.  I'm ready to put on my ruby slippers, and turn around three times, whispering, "there's no place like home, there's no place like home, there's no place like home....." 

Monday, January 16, 2012

Happy Birthday, Punkin'

On this day in second daughter arrived in this world.  From the very start she was beautiful, loving, smart, and stubborn; and she still is all of those things.  I love her with all my heart.  She's a wonderful mother to four great kids....including two just-born infants.  I admire the woman that she's become.  She's my girl and my friend.  Happy Birthday, Punkin'. 

Friday, January 13, 2012

Welcome into the World!

On Tuesday, January 2, 2012, my beautiful daughter gave birth to two sweet little twins, Mr. O and Miss A.  "O" weighed in at 5 pounds 6 ounces, and "A" weighed in at 4 pounds 15 ounces.  Thankfully, both are healthy and thriving.  For the last week, I've been staying at my daughter's house to help her with the twins, and with her two older children.  Although I miss my home and husband, who is back home in Flyover Country taking care of the dog and horses, I feel so blessed to be able to spend this time with my daughter and her family.  It's been wonderful getting to know these two new little souls.  Even though they're only just over a week old, each already has a distinct personality. 
Mr. O is a cuddler.  He likes to be held; but he also has temper and isn't afraid to express it with a loud cry.  He doesn't like being wet or hungry.  He doesn't like it if Grandma has cold hands when she changes his diaper.  When he wants to eat, he wants it NOW!   Even with that temper, he's so sweet.  He likes to hold onto something (like Grandma's fingers) when he eats.  He doesn't like to take a break from eating to burp, but shivers with pleasure when he does let out a big belch.  After he eats, he wants to be held until he falls back into full-tummy-stupor.  When he's awake, he looks at you with those big, slightly-unfocused, baby eyes that feel like he's looking directly into your heart.  He loves to look at the light, and enjoys being rocked.

Miss A is also a cuddler, but she's got a laid-back temperament, compared to her twin.  She wakes up slowly; stretching and squeaking herself awake.  She doesn't cry very loudly, but she will protest if she's cold or if you take too long to feed her once she's decided it's time to eat.  She takes a while to wake up, so don't try to feed her right away....she'll just fall back asleep and then she doesn't get enough to make it to the next scheduled feeding.  When she does decide to eat, she goes about it deliberately, but slowly.  She doesn't like air-bubbles in her tummy, and will squirm until you burp her; and more often than not, she'll take a bit of a snooze until she gets the burp out.  Like Mr. O, she doesn't like cold fingers on her tummy or bottom; nor does she enjoy a baby-wipe that hasn't been warmed up first.  Also like her brother, she likes to cuddle after she eats and loves to look at bright lights.   

Right now, these preemie-twins are so little that their life consists of eating, burping, sleeping, taking care of the natural consequences of eating, and growing.  It's going to be so much fun to watch these two precious beings grow and develop.  They've already got a big place in Grandma's heart.....along with their big brother and big sister and their two cousins. 

Welcome to the world, Mr. O and Miss A!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Blogging (Again) it's been a loooong time since I posted in this Blog.  Sorry, again, I'm not sure why.  I still see something, or read something, and think; "that would be good to talk about in the blog...." but somehow it doesn't get done.  I can blame it on being busy....there have been lots of changes in my life recently (including a new home), but if I'm totally honest with myself, my lack of posting is due to ambivalence about blogging coupled with a touch of laziness. 

When I started this blog, it was with a desire to participate in the blogging conversation going on "out there."  I supposed I needed an outlet for some reason.  I had just left the military, after serving for 23 years.  I had a job I loved, but that wasn't really challenging.  I spent a lot of time reading blogs, particularly milblogs, and wanted to add my voice to the issues addressing the military and the country.  Then my life changed....drastically. 

I left my job, my home, and my then-husband.  I went to live in the middle of "Flyover Country."  The phrase "life changes" doesn't describe it.  After all was said and done, it was the absolutely right decision for me.  I guess I could have blogged about my thoughts and feelings during that time; but that's really not me.  I don't "share" my very innermost being easily.  Then there was the attorney-side of me that was wary of posting anything that could have somehow come back and "bite" me.  So I denied myself the blogging outlet that some folks use to express themselves.  Just not really my style. 

As 2012 starts, life has stabilized (a bit).  I still live in the middle of "Flyover Country."  I'm absolutely certain I live in one of the most beautiful spots on earth.  My home is within a 10-minute drive of two different National Forests and a National Park....yet there isn't a single US Highway in the entire County.   Don't get me wrong....we have a great road system (including Highway 12, the first highway designated a "Scenic Byway"); it's just that they're all State highways.  I love where I live.  I'm remarried to a wonderful man, who loves me as much as I love him, and who takes care of me.  I have three horses, a dog, and beautiful home.  (Actually, I have two....a 75 year old home that we remodeled and a wonderful new home we just bought....the remodeled home is for sale....).  I've started a small law practice.  I have great friends.  I love my children, and adore my grandchildren (I now have six).  Life is good. 

So now I'd like to start up this blog again.  Maybe it's the Presidential election....makes me want to discuss politics and I enjoy joining that conversation to give my thoughts and opinions.  Maybe it's because I no longer feel "threatened" that anything I say could come back to hurt me.  Maybe because life is good, and I want to share (again) with friends and family.  My husband tells me that I analyze things too much....that sometimes I should just let things "be."  It could be he's right.  For whatever reason, I want to start writing again.  So here goes.......