june 14, 2019

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“My mother is a big believer in being responsible for your own happiness. She always talked about finding joy in small moments and insisted that we stop and take in the beauty of an ordinary day. When I stop the car to make my kids really see a sunset, I hear my mother’s voice and smile.” ~ Jennifer Garner

 

here lays the Judge

 

You first met Judge in 2014 when his person, Jerry Fanning, was called back to the beginning and we framily converged to help Angie give him a big send off. If memory serves, a couple of years earlier, Judge, came to the ranch. He was a pup. I guess he knew Jerry needed an outdoor companion, and Angie a guard. He was a very faithful companion. He helped Jerry around the ranch, always on hand for copious grilling duties. His favorite job, however, was chasing butterflies. This big, beautiful creature was perhaps the most gentle heart on the planet. So it was very sad when Angie told me Judge had to go home to Jerry. Back to the beginning. She said he was fine yesterday, but gone today. The worst thing about loving dogs (or cats or horses) is that we outlive them. The best thing about loving them is, well, everything. 

may 26, 2019

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“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.” ~ Anatole France

 

best friend and protector

 

Stacy needed to install some gear for Deb, so I tagged along to see her new house. It’s absolutely fabulous. In fact, it’s spectacular. I also got to see her beloved Banjo, best friend and protector, and her 16 year old cat, Sophie who met us at the door and welcomed us in. Banjo, well, he’s just a ball of utter delight. No wonder Deb loves him so much, and he obviously loves her, too. I’m like Banjo: I love and adore Deb. A good time was had by all, including the pets.

 

queen of the house

 

a girl and her pets

february 2, 2019

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“Never in the history of calm down has anyone calmed down by being told to calm down.” ~ Unknown

 

freshly sworn

 

Look at this face. I’m in love with this little guy. I must be to get up at 7am on a Saturday to have him at the vet. Nothing’s wrong, it was just time for the yearly visit for Wally and the cats. Everyone is very healthy, although after the morning’s visit, three of four of us are now on diets. Leo is not (and Aunt Millie was SO pleased with him without his eye). After a wonderful lunch and grocery shopping extravaganza with Stacy, the afternoon weather was so utterly perfect – a 70 +/- degree difference from Thursday – that Wally and I sat in the sun for a bit. Before long, feeling energized by the natural Vitamin D, Wally got his spring haircut, albeit super early. He’s such a good boy. He stands still and never makes a fuss. Is he not the most adorable face ever? I’m so glad we found each other. What a truly beautiful day. And hey, it was mom and dad’s 56th anniversary. Bonus!

october 31, 2018

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“I hope there are days when your coffee tastes like magic, your playlist makes you dance, strangers make you smile, and the night sky touches your soul. I hope there are days when you fall in love with being alive.” ~ Brooke Hampton

 

west

 

The most beautiful part of a sunset may not always be the sunset itself but the glorious colors cast to the east. The 2-Pony Ranch is beautiful all the time and I find it especially beautiful bathed in long shadows of golden light. Plus, long shadows are slimming and I’m all for that.

 

east

september 16, 2018

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“A man who limits his interests limits his life.” ~ Vincent Price

 

Ally at Scarefest

 

This is, without a doubt, the best photo of the weekend and it’s fitting that it comes at the end of the best thing at Scarefest, besides my Okie peeps of course, and that was a lecture by Victoria Price. If her name doesn’t ring a bell, take a look at today’s quote. That’s Victoria’s dad, the totally awesome Vincent Price. Pam had met Vincent many years ago when she was working for American Airlines. It’s her story to tell, so I’ll simply say that he made a positive impression on her. Pam heard Victoria speak once before, so when I learned she was closing the event today, I went along. Just as Pam promised, her story did not disappoint. Even though the lecture is billed as a talk about her dad, it’s really much more, and that’s where it got really interesting for me. 

 

new friends
Ally’s a good dog

 

Before today, I didn’t know anything at all about Victoria Price other than being he father’s daughter. Her presentation was about her dad. However, I found it to be as much about finding joy in the every day as it was about Vincent. The two are very connected. I’ve since learned that, several years ago, Victoria started a blog called Daily Practice of Joy. She has also authored a book called The Way of Being Lost: A Road Map to Your Truest Self as well as a biography on her dad. For those of you who’ve been following the outhouse for some time, you’ll know immediately why I enjoyed Victoria’s talk so much. I really appreciate how she’s using her relationship with her dad and his philosophy of life to spread a little love and joy through the world. I can’t think of a much better way to honor a loved one. He found joy in most everything he did throughout his life and encouraged his daughter to do the same. That’s a philosophy right up my alley! It was a lovely presentation, and meeting her with Pam was just a great way to end the weekend. May we all find joy in our every day.

 

note to self: haircut soon

march 31, 2018

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“Without rain nothing grows, learn to embrace the storms of your life.” ~ Unknown

 

Wallace J. (snapseed)

 

The last day of March has been wonderful. Catherine Brereton and I had a little business proposal that went swimmingly (stay tuned for that news). Me and the boy above got some overdue yard work out of the way. I played a little music. And then Stacy and I tried a great new Mediterranean restaurant. What a great day. Also, you might recall I mentioned Debra Faulk a few weeks back. She did her Tedx Talk rehearsal that we were all so excited about. I promised I’d let you know when it was available to see, and et voila, here it is. The talk is good, she’s still funny, and the message is always important. So, friends, enjoy the talk, enjoy this last day of March, and may it have been as awesome for you as it was for me and Wally.

january 1, 2018

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“As we move from one year into the next, let us heal this hurting world with love and beauty. Let us live in hope instead of fear. Let us do the work we came here to do with peace as our guide. Let us shine for one another. Let us allow the movement of grace. Let us dream into one another’s hearts, remain open to possibility, and remember our true selves.” ~ Lori-Lyn Hurley

Lilly 2018

 

My faithful companions spent New Year’s Day with me. If we treat their ages as thoroughbreds, turning another year older on January 1 regardless of their actual date of birth, then Lilly is 10 years old today. Leo is an estimated 13 to 15 (it’s really hard to know with him, even for the vet), and Wally an estimated 6. I was scrolling back through the outhouse and found the day I got Wally in December 2014. He’s still as adorable and lovable as I’d hoped he’d be after we got to know one another. I wouldn’t take anything for him. I wouldn’t take anything for any of them. We four are off to a great start for 2018. I hope the same for all of you.

 

Leo 2018

 

Wallace 2018

october 18, 2017

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“When you are generous, sometimes people will take advantage. You may be respectful and yet some people will still be unkind. You may be a good person, and some people will nonetheless still treat you terribly… How you treat others is really about who you choose to be in this life… That’s how the world changes — one brave person like you being kind.” ~ Bryant McGill

 

family (snapseed)

 

Our Shero is surrounded by her three boys after an action packed day. For the first time since her accident she was able to take our Hero to one of his appointments. It made them both happy, and it makes me happy that she was able to regain her independence. They’ve both still got a lot of appointments over the next six weeks, but things are getting better. I count four blessings on my couch.

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