Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The way things were .....

Welcome to the Winslow Ranch! This is home sweet home, though usually there is not snow on the ground. This was a fluke storm that dropped a couple of inches just a few weeks after I arrived! Mike was still in Fairborn, OH preparing our house there to be put back on the market and to pack the remainder of our belongings. My life for 2 months was spent here with our old dog, Sheba and my hand-me-down cat, Tober. Typically, wherever I am, they are, so this picture is representative of our evenings. Every few hours, I need to put Sheba out because she doesn't "work so good" any more. She'll be 16 next month, so her weeks and months are numbered! Tober is about 6 or 7 years old and is THE best mouser I've ever seen. That's how she earns her keep! Sheba's retired, so she doesn't have a job anymore - besides, she's deaf and arthritic - not good attributes for a watch dog! The only other company I had were these two horses that belong to the family that leased our ranch before we moved down here. This is what I woke up to just outside the bedroom doors some mornings! Actually, they were a lot of company and gave me something to talk to and be responsible for. They still share our space, but I'm sure Bill will be over to 'fetch' them one of these days when the days are consistently warmer so that his little girl can ride Tutu, the 9 year old mare. The closer horse is Racey, a yearling filly and she's actually quite friendly and follows me everywhere if I'm out in the pasture. I was trying to pull out the crop of burdocks that grow in the middle of this pasture, but she kept breathing down my neck and I could see her front feet behind me when I bent over! As a result, I put off my weed picking till she was off in another pasture. In her playfulness, I was afraid she'd knock me down. I must say that I really respect her size and weight and wanted to be attentive when she was so close! Some mornings we'd watch the sunrise and sit on the porch. Even Tober liked to come out for some fresh air.

Last thing before bed was taking Sheba out, and while I waited for her to do her duty, I'd check out the stars which are really incredible here. We're about 6 miles east of Olney (population 3,396), so city lights are not an issue. On a clear night you can see billions of stars and pick our many constellations. I'd include a picture if I could, but I don't think I could do it justice. On cold nights, I'd just let Sheba out and she'd let me know when she was ready to come in! It was a quiet life. It was back to basics and quiet - time to contemplate and problem solve and plan for the future in our new life. Time to find a new church, meet new people and figure out where to shop. Time to get services set up, to get carpet installed and flooring put down. Time to get a washer and dryer - I was running out of clean underwear!!! It was a good time and I learned to enjoy and appreciate life in the country and looked forward to the time when Mike came to stay. We have enough projects to keep us busy for years to come, but hey ... we're retired and have the rest of our years to get it done. So we're having fun!!!

Friday, February 15, 2008

A leap of faith

Judi moved to the ranch in October 2007. I remained in Ohio to get our old house ready for sale (just as the bottom fell out of the real estate market) and finally joined her in December.