The Hills Do Have Eyes! – Adventure To Big Eye Mine Cabin

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From the passenger seat I watched the front right tire of the jeep roll up, and twist over a big rock in the trail. In the shiny, black metal I could see the reflected red hued mountains in the distance along the desert trail, wrapped up in the endless, clear blue sky above.  Our friends followed along in an older little vehicle, their windows down, giggling at the Jeep crawling over the rocks, flexing and bending over the washed out parts of the road. It would go anywhere. It also made a big spectacle of everything it went over, a nimble black widow scampering across its web on long, nimble legs. Their little vehicle, sporting brand new little tires lightly rolled right over the same obstacle with much less of a show. The wind whistled between the cactus spines along the trail before us.

Jeep Wrangler Arizona Big Eye Mine Cabin Read the rest of this entry

The Bucking Mare

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SedonaPaintHorseSaddle

 

Somehow various country songs danced through my head as I stomped back towards my house. “Ready to Run”, “Meet in the Middle”, and “Cowgirls Don’t Cry” among them, not that I wanted to cry … I was more angry than anything.  I watched Sedona’s brightly colored coat, fully saddled and bridled, gallivanting across the alfalfa fields towards the house, without me.  I had to shake my head in disappointment at the scenario. She’d dumped me. I had just landed on my shoulder, rolled and jumped back up. There was an odd pain in my hip where I’d landed with each step I took. My cheek hurt, my lip felt busted up. I dusted off my jeans some more and kept an eye on the spooked horse. Read the rest of this entry

If you could permanently get rid of one worry, what would it be?

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BooksBambergcopyrightNaBloPoMo Tuesday, November 11

If you could permanently get rid of one worry, what would it be?

I am the “zen” one. I have an amazing ability to be calm and relaxed when the world is crashing around me. Sometimes it might seem like I’m always calm and worry free. But that is not always the case, I do have worries and struggles, I just don’t let anyone on to them, it shouldn’t be their worry. But I worry about money, a lot. I think a lot of Americans do.

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A “professional blogger”? Not quite.

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Kaysha Croagh Patrick

NaBloPoMo November 2014 Prompts

Thursday, November 6

Do you consider yourself a “professional” blogger? Why or why not? What does that mean to you?

I consider professional bloggers to be the wonderful people whose blogs are their bread and butter, their 9-5. But for them it’s hardly what we today call “a job”! I have the pleasure of contacting these esteemed “bloggers” every so often, requesting their permission to share their hard work across the social media brand’s Facebook pages I manage.

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Where do I find my voice?

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Screen Shot 2014-11-05 at 10.21.01 PMNaBloPoMo November 5th 2014 Prompt

Wednesday, November 5

Do you feel you have found your voice on your blog? What techniques have you tried to develop your voice in your writing? What are some characteristics of your personality in your writing?

Sometimes I feel that I left my voice in graduate school. Perhaps I left it behind when I learned the German language. I wouldn’t say that I found my voice on my blog, though. My voice was found through four years of school in creative writing classes, and studying abroad in Germany where professors were not shy is saying, “no… that doesn’t work,” or “no, that doesn’t make sense.” A seemingly forbidden saying here in the United States because we so often dance around student’s feelings.

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What We Forget About Horses

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If your horse says no, you either asked the wrong question, or asked the question wrong. ~ Pat Parelli

It’s been just over a year since Connie died; my first horse, the horse of my dreams, my childhood horse. I felt like shunning horses away forever, something inside me died. That was until this last July.

My family helps temporarily house abused and starved horse cases in the town where I live. This year saw an influx of horses seized. The starved creatures come off the horse trailers barely able to stand, unable to put up any sort of fight as they are led into the corrals with fresh water, and not long after, fresh hay. At my parent’s place they are bathed, and slowly brought back to life, to be a horse again before going to a government auction.

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A goat in my backyard?

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A goat in my backyard?

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” ~Leonardo da Vinci

The start of Fall in the desert found two new creatures in my life; two baby dairy goats. Why did you get goats? People ask.  For years I’ve wanted a dairy cow, a Jersey cow of my own so I could drink milk from my own cow. I have since realized what  a large investment that is, and how impractical that would be for my current lifestyle. A dairy cow is for a family.

I took care of my friend Crystal’s dairy cow Maggie a few times last year. “You can keep whatever you milk,” she said.  I diligently milked Maggie the cow. I poured her grain into her bucket at her milking stand and she patiently let me strap on the  automatic milker with its little suction cups. Yes, I did hand milk her once for fun. Crystal showed me how to take the container into the house and dump the milk into the glass milk jugs. How to use the strainer, and how delicious that cream tastes in coffee. She even had me over for breakfast one morning with her own eggs and products from Maggie’s milk. Aside from being lots of work, it all seemed so simple, so wholesome.  I drank milk straight from the cow, warm and freshly squeezed, and loved it.

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Where the rattlers won’t go, mind games to ride 80 miles through the desert.

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“If you are going through hell, keep going.” ~ Winston Churchill

Hell of the West (or the Yuma Grand Fondo) – San Luis, Arizona to Palm Canyon road July 26th, 2014 

“Extra bike tube… check. Tire changing kit… check. Water… check. GoPro… check.” It was 2:30am.  I gathered up the rest of the gear for my looming 80 mile bike ride. The day of our Yuma Grand Fondo, a ride that had been in the works for weeks, had arrived.  July 26th was to be the day of the worst bike suffering I’ve yet felt in life, but it had to be done. Read the rest of this entry

Clipping In, Cannondale and Shimano

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“I always felt that my greatest asset was not my physical ability, it was my mental ability.”– Bruce Jenner

In my mind, I saw myself in the cycling scene from American Flyers, a peloton of trained athletes tucked into compression shorts, sparkling white shoes clipped into metal contraptions, gliding around on the 16lb flying machines we call road bikes. But that’s not exactly what it looked like. In fact, when I started riding with the people here, we didn’t even know how to ride in a paceline, we were side by side, or in the road. I never had the time, money, or guts to clip into my Cannondale road bike, either.

I only recently got my first “real” bike, my Cannondale, in 2012 when my friend Margaret went overseas to teach English. I offered to watch her horse for the year, and in return, she gave me a sweet deal on her older roadie. She had two anyway; there was no use in letting the gorgeous creature sit in a garage. As she was packing her house up to leave the country, I went over so she could show me the bike. The garage was full of bikes, hanging on the walls, leaned up against the wooden siding, hanging upside down on the ceiling. She lived in a raft guides house, the sort of house you find rather often Fort Collins, if you know what I mean. I scanned all of the bikes in the garage, quickly picking out which ones I was secretly hoping would not be the one I was about to invest in. As soon as Margaret had said “do you want to buy my other road bike?” a few weeks prior, I said yes, knowing she had great taste in bikes, but without having seen the bike.

Cannondale R700

Cannondale R700

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In the sacred shadow of the mountain

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In the sacred shadow of the mountain

“If you take a flower in your hand and really look at it, it’s your world for a moment.” ~ Georgia O’Keeffe 

After chugging up the long road to Taos, the RV pulled into a dirt lot in front of the Two Graces gallery where Robert Cafazzo stood, unassumingly  awaiting his six gumptious travel writers known as the “Whiskey Sisters.”  He was the first and last man to step foot on our RV with us during the trip. Read the rest of this entry