Archive for the ‘oregon’ Category


Last week Darling and I drove down to Burns, Oregon, where I picked up my new Mustang Makeover competition horse.  It was lovely.  The sky was blue.  There was no mud.  Sure, it was a bit chilly, but it was better than the mud that oozes through the holes in a farm diva’s boots back home.

While there we took a drive with a friend up to the Steens Mountains where we were blessed to come upon a large herd of horses.  Wild horses.  No fences…just thousands and thousands of acres.   It was a desperate horsewife’s dream, to be surrounded by mustangs so close you could nearly touch them.  And yes, I do mean we were that close!  And yes, I do mean wild!  But we were quiet, not disruptive, and while the older stallions watched with suspicion from the top of the ridge, the younger horses stuck to their guns and continued to graze peacefully while we lustfully filled our cameras with images of this oh-so-amazing experience.

Back home, however, the skies are nothing like they were in Burns.  They are gray and dripping and dreary and threatening to snow on us.  They have created mud that sucks even my beloved muck boots from my feet when I go outside to work the horses.

Yesterday I was working with the new boy, Steve Holt!, and once finished I found I’d gained 20 lbs from the mud that was now caked on my jeans and sweatshirt.  I got the brainy idea that I should grab Darling’s little camera and video myself.  But when I played it back,  I looked stupid.  Not the normal embarrassing stupid that I normally look like…I haven’t got an issue with that…I was just totally dorky!  I couldn’t figure out how to delete the video, though, and wouldn’t you know that Darling found it?  And she’s threatening me with it!

“I’m  going to call it, The Stupid Things My Mother Does,” she said with an evil grin as she ran off with my embarrassing moments.   Some gratitude from the kid who gave me stretch marks, or who’s most embarrassing video of her I deleted for all eternity.  Now I’m wishing I’d kept it so that I had something to blackmail her with!


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Quiet Storm and Stephanie

Last year about this time, Darling and I were preparing ourselves for the heartbreak of a lifetime…we’d sold Quiet Storm. Stephanie came to pick her up in early December. I think I cried more than Darling. The only saving grace of the day was, of all things, the snow. It was keeping my face just wet enough that it hid my tears. I cried for a month, quietly, silently, hiding from Darling so she wouldn’t see. Darling dealt with her grief through writing. Eventually, though, the pain eased and life went on…

Until Molalla. We were just a week from leaving when we received word from Stephanie that her income was dwindling and there just wasn’t enough money to care properly for Quiet Storm…and could I possibly take her back? Half elated, half dreading, I said yes. City Boy would not be happy, I knew, but what else could I do? Horses aren’t selling well right now, and Storm…she’s special. I couldn’t just let her slip away into just anyone’s hands, so home she came with 3 other mustangs which were here for gentling.

Quiet Storm hadn’t changed. She was still small, still the bottom of the pecking order, and still trying to walk on your toes. Darling and I saddled her up and we went for a ride, me on Jet, she on Quiet Storm. All went well.

As suspected, City Boy was less than thrilled over the turn of events. While he likes Storm, she made mustang #8 out in our tiny field. I made a half hearted promise to find her a new home while secretly longing for her to be able to stay with us forever…


Is she not just the most adorable little pony you’ve seen?

I spent the summer playing with and gentling the other mustangs. What I didn’t do is put much effort into finding a home for our little mustang. Now and then I’d speak with someone about her, but things never worked out. Finally, in October, I decided I just needed to bite the bullet and let her go. Darling had her new horse, Dude, and in all honesty there just wasn’t room for her in the barn.

But you’ll never believe what happened next…

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I Want…

“I like that gray stallion.”

“Darling, he’s 17 years old.”

“I still like him.”

“That’s nice, you’re still not getting him.”

“I like that mare, there.”

“Which one?”

“Right there, in front of you.”

“I’m pretty sure there are about 30 right in front of me.”

“Well, that’s the one I like.  Can I have her?”

“No.  I’m pretty sure the answer is no.”


The drive over was lovely. Early yesterday morning, as we were driving through the Warm Springs Reservation, we spotted a small herd of horses.   We found a place to turn around and managed to get a couple of shots before they trotted off.

The weather?  Beautiful!   We shed our jackets the moment we pulled in.  And what I wouldn’t give for sunset shots like this in Western Washington!  Such a change from our last visit when we hit freezing weather and hail.  Darling likes to say that Burns has bi-polar weather.

Darling is right.  Today, we had hail.

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$10 for a Bath?

Darling and I are just climbing out of bed here at Government Camp.  I’m going to have to do some research and find out why it’s called that.  It was dark when we pulled in nearly 12 hours ago and dark still as we’re ready to pull out, so no clue what the place looks like.

I do know, however, if you want a really nice bath, you pay $10 more.

Sure you could have a regular bath and not pay extra, but for a bath junkie such as myself, the lure of the super big tub and jacuzzi jets was just too much.

“It’s regularly~” she began to give me their full price.

“Doesn’t matter.  Wrap it up, I’ll take it!”  Are you kidding?  I’d been up since 4:30 and Darling and I had been on the road for seven hours.  $10 was a small price to pay for jacuzzi jets massaging my tired, worn out old body.

Darling was less than impressed with the fact that it was in the same room as the bed.  Yes…appears we got a nice little honeymoon room.  She was totally distraught, insisted I keep my clothes on and that water off.  So sorry, Darling, but you made this body the saggy, baggy mess it is today and you’re just going to have to deal with it.

She did survive, thanks to my pouring tons of shampoo into the tub and creating a 2 foot high mound of bubbles around myself.  A good sound sleep and we’re both away and getting ready to hit the road once more.

Woops…I took too long here, she’s asleep again.

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Counting Down

Darling and I are counting down the hours.  Tomorrow, as soon as she’s out of school, we’re jumping in the truck and headed south.  Just me and her….her and me…the two of us girls out on the open road.  Together.  Alone.  In the cab of my truck…Alone.  Me and my 13 year old.

Did I think this through?

Darling loves to chitter chatter.  She’ll chitter and chatter for hours on end.  Then suddenly she’ll look at me and wonder if I’ve heard a word she’s said.  And honestly?  Well, sure, a word or two.  But I tend to get out there on the road and think about driving.  Things like where the other cars are, and where my next turn off is, and where should we stop to spend the night?  And then Darling get’s all in a huff because I haven’t heard about…well, I don’t really know what I didn’t hear about.  I think it was something to do with the Beatles.

Because Darling is a Beatles fan.  And thanks to that nerdy, big, Grammar Nazi brother of hers, she’s also becoming a Jethro Tull fan.  And I ask you, why can’t I have normal kids?  Why can’t my kids enjoy George Straight?  Or Montgomery Gentry?  Darling, of course, is prepared for the trip with something like 300 songs on an ipod.  I don’t even know what an ipod is.  Is it an ipod???  No, maybe not.  Maybe it’s an MP3 player.  I’m so not technically savvy.  Whatever it is, Darling has songs on it so she can combat the boredom that is her non-chattering, middle aged mother who does not listen to the Beatles, Jethro Tull, or even the Rolling Stones.

Despite our differences on the road, Darling and I are both ready for the weekend.  Our camera batteries are charged. I’ve even remembered to bring my charger this time so I can take even more photos than I did this spring.


 More Oregon Landscapes…




More Cowboys…





 And most importantly,

More Wild Horses!

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I got up this morning, like every other morning, and did my chores and played on the computer.  But I was so focused on getting things done in other areas that I just rather brushed y’all off…I’m sorry.  Did you  miss me?  Or did you even notice?

Should I use this one? 

So what had me so pre-occupied?  Nope, wasn’t driving my truck.  Just trying to finalize plans for next weekend.  Darling and I are headed back to Burns to the Kiger adoption.  I’ve been creating new products such as lip balms and images for T-shirts, printing transfers, driving to the T-shirt shop (okay, yes, in my new truck) so they could do a professional job of the iron on.  Basically, running about here and there.   I’ve still got to make a special cream to replace the salve I made earlier in the year.  Wasn’t happy  with how the salve held up in the temp changes, so am reformulating.

Or this one? 

Now, you know how I feel about the four letter S word.  I do not like it, not one little bit.  Our last trip to Burns took us over Divine Pass, which is simply breathtaking…if you’re not ready to puke.  Being one who doesn’t do well with windy roads, puking was high on my priority list.  And there was no white stuff on the ground.  Imagine if that pass was white?!  No, thank you.  So I’m sitting here right now attempting to map out my route.  Do you live in Oregon?  What’s the best way to Burns other than taking that dreadful pass?


Divine Pass is, quite simply, divine…unless you’re ready to toss your cookies. 



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Okay, I just had to give a photo one more try…

The weather in Burns has been crazy! It’s crazy that the pictures aren’t showing up! I think City Boy thinks I’m crazy, too…

I’ve no clue why those photos aren’t coming up. Craziest part is, they were showing up on the lap top after I posted them last night. I even snuck a peek at the blog from the complimentary computer in the hotel lobby, and they were there, too. This afternoon when we checked into the hotel, the pics were still showing up for me. But tonight? Gone. I’m going to have to try reposting them once we get back.

The only upshot is that my camera battery is running low, and uploading the photos is draining it. Can you believe I forgot my battery charger? Yeah, I’m sure you can. And I did. Perhaps a bit later I can get Darling’s photos up.

Crazy…the weather is crazy here. 70 degrees yesterday, snow flurries today. Lots of snow flurries! The temperature jumps between 34 and 54 within ten miles. And snow. SNOW! You know how I feel about snow. It’s the four letter S word! I don’t like it. Thankfully, it’s not sticking to the ground, or we’d be stuck here in Burns. We may not like Burns if we have to spend more than a couple days here.

This morning we went to the Wild Horse Corrals. Oh…the pictures I’ve got for you! Darling and I want to bring one home with us. In the car. Just stuff it into the trunk. Or maybe tie him to the top. Sure, he may leave a few hoofprints. It may appear that a we’d had a very heavy tap dancer riding on the roof of the car. But hey, it’s a trade off I’m willing to make. Which is why City Boy thinks I’m crazy.

We never managed to find any horses out in the wild, but we gave it our best shot. What we did were antelope, deer, and a couple of dead cows. All of which I documented so that you could feel like you’re really here with me!

Right now, I’m cold. More snow flurries tonight. City Boy says we’re not going to rush out tomorrow morning, so I think I’ll take a long, hot bath to warm up my poor, frozen little toes. Then, come morning, I’ll try to get Darling’s photos up for you. I think she got some great Drive By Shootings! Then I’ll come back and try one more time to get photos up for you =)

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