Welcome to Fern Valley

Here in central Alberta prime farm country,my husband Martin and I work together raising beef cattle and Appaloosa horses. Fern valley appaloosas have long been known for their quality of temperament conformation and color.I have recently rediscovered a love of writing and have published 2 collections of poetry. "Telling Tails" and Tails Trails and Campfire stories" . I look forward to a future spreading my wings as an author and as a horse woman .

Sunday, 27 December 2015

Equine therapy, for me. Wrapping up Christmas, and the big move!

So busy times this last while! Dad took possession of his new house on the 18 Dec, and we hit the ground running , I had great friends come and help clean the driveway, we picked up a few new items for the house and set to unpacking the little stuff before the 22 when the movers came  with the big load of stuff. Then dad , my honorary nephew Cal and I set to work unpacking, sorting and doing what we could on the 23 . After that I took a break to finish getting ready for Christmas.But first I took a little "me time" 
Went to see the girls and had a little photo shoot

As you can see I had a blast! 

Then all of a sudden it was Christmas! we all gathered at my sisters house for Christmas eve. Dad ,Martin and I and Heather Marc, Tara, and Russ,Deanna and Adam, and Brendan. A house full of love! We laughed, had a few tears but mostly celebrated the way we knew mom would love!

Christmas morning Martin and I had a little time here then back to Heather and Marc's for brunch. Home for a little nap and out to Adam and Deanna's for supper! It was wonderful! Deee outdid herself with the meal, and while I felt a little at odds not having to cook anything, I got comfortable with it pretty damn quick, and simply enjoyed the day! 
Stopped to see Martin's sister and family on the way home, then to his other sister on Boxing day. My heart and belly are full! 

Today I had guest in the form of the Oakleys, Deb and Brian,  Robert and Rhiannon.I was so pleased I haven't had a visit with Rob in a very long time, the first of my honorary nephews,he holds a pretty special place in my heart.
Angela and Cara were unable to come but they sent some lovely cards, words and treasures. One in particular, moved me to tears, not in a bad way but while every gift I receive is wonderful and perfect, there are some that just ...well I will let you see it 
This is a watercolour that Cara did from a photo I took in the spring shortly after Henry arrived in my life. Winston took mentoring the little one seriously and we joked that this pic was him telling henry how to make a snow angel
"ya gotta get yer back into it"

the original pic

Then after the company left I headed back to dads (it is so cool that he is only 10 min away now!) 
to unpack some more, he has kept moms curios and china some for the grandkids and some just because, plus his own treasures .Luckily my Uncle was there with his fiance, so I had help too Sharon helped unpack and clean then flattened the boxes, you know the story , many hands  make light work! 
So now that he is in and it is official here are a few pics of the new digs! 
 the shed

and inside before the move

 Now with the goodies put away 

Its a two bedroom, so room for an office and very comfortable, the infloor heat is amazing! I think dad will be happy here, and I am thrilled to have him close! 
Back to work for a couple days this week then New years will be upon us! Hope everyone is safe and happy, with loved ones around during this blessed season! 

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Another round of "messin with the music! " some pics, and the poem I couldn't write. in not exactly that order

Thank you to all who posted, emailed and send condolences. Your support means so much .I know mom will rest easy with my big yellow dog, knowing I have such wonderful friends.
The service for mom was lovely, with remembrances form her grandchildren and my sister Heather read the eulogy. Thank you to all of the many who joined in celebrating the life of this great lady.

Together we wrote the eulogy, I had hoped I would find the words to write a poem for mom, but maybe it was too soon, or too close. I felt badly that I couldn't write one for her service, then finally (with support and caring from family ) realised it would happen when it was meant to , or maybe not at all. And that is fine too . Mom knew I loved her and still do, and I did in my way write poems for and about her in the past, just just have to know us to see where they are.
This did come to me the other day,not quite what I had thought I would write, but what I was in that moment compelled to write. Is it the Poem I couldn't write? I don't know , it is the one I did write  for now
I took your picture off the wall
 as though you were never here,
 at all.
Yet I close my eyes and see your face
Ever present in this place
I took the picture down you see
Because it made me cry
In the next moment 
My heart begged me to know why
I wanted for a time
 to hide from my tears
I thought if I couldn't see you
 I could forget all those years
The lessons laughter love and 
the memories that are just mine

 I thought if I could forget
 I could let go of the pain
But then only emptiness would remain
I hung your picture on the wall today
There it will always stay 
I remember the love,

I let the tears fall.
And I hung your picture on the wall

But , as mom would say, "moving right along, here are a few photos of the last while here.
Henry has taken up the torch and joined in on the Fern Valley Duelling/Dancing  doggie show

As you can see , after a long mild fall, Winter has arrived.Still not terribly cold but definitely winter now 

 Frosty and cold enough for hats

Speaking of hats, 
I had kept on of granddad Blain's harris Tweed hats, it was a bit big, but it reminded me of him and smelled like his pipe tobacco of all things so I kept it and wore it from time to time.

Well before brendan left to go back to school after moms service, we were talking and he had tried on my dad's cap, it looked great on him but was too small.
Well much as i wanted to keep it, I figured Brendan might like it and it really didn't fit me so...

He wears it well don't you think? 

Well Christmas is fast approaching , and some other exciting news, that I want to keep under my hat for just a few more days, so I will leave you with this for now;
another run at messing with the music, not a funny twist on an old favorite this time, but a twist all the same 
Have yourself a special little Christmas
But let your love shine bright
someday too our trials will be made more light
Have yourself a  special little Christmas
Take the time that day

To show that prayer and faith are
 What will truly light your way
Celebrate like the olden days
Cherish special ways once more
Bless those who are not near to us
Yet dear to us ever more
Take the time no matter what the weather
Spend some time together
In the here and now.
And have yourself that very special little Christmas now

Stay safe and warm my friends

Thursday, 26 November 2015

For my broken heart

"Last night I prayed the lord my soul to keep, 
then I cried myself to sleep,
so sure life wouldn't go on without you .
 But now the sun is breaking through as it wakes me from the dark.
I guess the world aint gonna stop,
for my broken heart " Reba McEntire 

This has been a hard post to write, and one I was never sure I would be ready for . 
I have posted on FB about it but this place is where I have the opportunity to share a bit more. First of all this is what I wrote to honor my mother who passed away on Saturday November 21,she had been ill for many years and was a hero to many in the way she faced her illness and pain;

When we think of warriors we think of the strong giants who have battled throughout our history. Valiance is defined as: courage and determination. Not all valiant warriors are giants. Remember David was small and overcame. A great warrior in our world was my mother, in the face of pain and illness she overcame again and again with grace courage and determination. When a warrior lays down their arms it is not necessarily concession of defeat. Sometimes the battle ends because it is simply time to do so. Saturday night our great warrior, Patricia Alice Horricks completed her battle of 32 years and has gone on to rest in the arms of the father.A beloved wife, mother ,grandmother and so much more.We will miss you but remain ever proud.

The only way I could think of to describe and salute such a strong and inspiring woman. 
I have not written a poem for her, I seem unable at present to do so. I was worried and upset about this feeling like I should and that by not doing so I was letting her down, but it is what it is, and maybe someday when the hurt is less I will be able to.The eulogy is prepared and I spent the last couple of days gathering photos for the slideshow that will be shown at the service.
Mom, like me had fairly eclectic taste in music, from rock to Opera and all in between. But one of my favorite memories of her was her cleaning house to "Joy to the world" by Three dog Night, windows flung wide open and volume on high. That was my mom.

And then,on Sunday, while we were still only beginning to process the loss of my mom. Winston collapsed in the barn,and with me sitting holding him on my lap , he also took his rest.
It was quick and very peaceful. Goldens are like that, they are fine until they are not. Someone commented that Mom needed a friend with her. What better friend to have than my big golden boy.I guess he did what he was meant to do here, and having raised up little Henry right and saved my heart so many times, it was time for him to go. 12 and a half years of unconditional love and joy, I would be selfish to ask for more. 
And I am, I wanted forever.

Stay safe and well my friends

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Picture this, oops! forgot to hit post!

I started this Post on November 4, then , not sure what happened  but I am finishing it now.
I had a request for more Henry pics, so here you go! 

As you can see we had a dusting of snow! 

guys that play hard, sleep hard too 

Henry and his pet kitty Delilah

" I jes rode into town looking for the man who shot my paw" LOL hat is backwards but he was not actually cooperating as well as it looks 

 Also a distant cousin of Martins ,that we met just last year sent me these lovely little tree ornaments! custom made for the boys!

Henry ,like Winston is an animal planet junkie! 

 I also captured some pics of this little fellow  tappity tapping away

Finally got the feeder barrels hung, took a couple adjustments and some false starts to keep them hung up, but they seem good now, tied in place with holes drilled in the side then stabilised with a rachet strap.LIkely U bolts would work better but I think they would seize in the weather and we would have difficulty moving the feeders if we wanted to.This makes them easy to shift around . As for how they work? so far so good Phoenix is doing very well with his and Cactus. well although he is not impressed he is using it and holding weight without wasting hay so I call it a win.
I have one day a week now that I am gone from 9 in the morning to & at night. I could get family to do chores but I wanted to see if this worked. So Marc or Dad let the dogs out for me ,but I feed the horses in the morning , filling the feeder with what would be almost a full days ration, and they still have hay when I get home !  I call that a win! 

Speaking of my long day, I am travelling quite a ways north and ,my drive can be a real Hinterland who's who lol .
Last week I saw a black bear (too far for pics and I didn't really want to get a whole lot closer) 
and these three lovelies! 

Life is pretty good, I am getting ready to haul Cat and Andee to the barn for the winter and get back on track coaching, hoping to also get back into swimming again now that I am healed up. 
Gotta move it or lose it!
Stay safe  my friends