The 3 Day Quote Challenge – Day 1

Laura Bruno Lilly, nominated me for The 3 Day Quote Challenge. Thank you for the nomination, I feel honored. I think one of the few things that can make a photograph stand out, is if it’s paired with a lovely quote, or story, that makes me feel even more emotions than the photo alone.  This is the first day of the challenge for me. I’m imagining sharing different kind of photos each day, to be able to enjoy different types of quotes. Today I’m going to share some action filled photos from the rodeo I went to a couple weekends ago. The rules for the challenge are:

– Thank the person who nominated you
– Post a quote for three consecutive days (1 quote for each day)
– Share why this quote appeals to you so much
– Nominate 3 different bloggers for each day

 

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Rodeo careers can end without warning, as quick as the next try at an eight-second ride.

– John Branch

I figure this might be a good quote to get you introduced to the rodeo with, if going to the rodeo isn’t your regular choice of entertainment in the weekends. In bronc riding, like the photos in this post, (and bull riding,) the goal is to stay on the horse (or bull, in bull riding,) for 8 seconds. After 8 seconds an alarm goes of, and if you managed to stay on for 8 seconds, the ride get scored by a team of judges. 8 seconds is a very long time when on a violently bucking horse, or bull.  If you fall off before the alarm rings, you don’t get any points at all.

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If you’re lucky enough to draw a good horse, you still have to ride him, then the next ones. So It’s probably 80 percent luck and 20 percent skill.

– Chris LeDoux
The score the riders get, is based on how they ride the bucks. Some horses bucks more violently, twists, turns, and make it really difficult for the rider. A good rider wants a horse like that, it means that he has a chance to take first place (more price money.) A horse that doesn’t buck furiously, don’t give you much points. In fact, if the horse is to lame in its bucking, you get to do a re-ride, on another horse. Many of these cowboys are living of their winnings, so it’s more than just a game for them.
Sometimes a hard day’s work is easier than a lot of things you can meet in life.

– Chris LeDoux

Chris LeDoux, in the quotes above, is one of my favorite artists. Along with Johnny Cash, he is probably the one artist I listen the most to. If I’m making dinner in the kitchen, editing photos, or drive somewhere, you can bet either Johnny, or Chris keeps me company. Chris LeDoux was first famous for being a hard to beat cowboy, an excellent bronc, and bull rider, before becoming an artist. At the time of his death in 2005, he’d produced 36 music albums.
Some guys work 125 to 130 rodeos a year. They’re just goin’ all the time.
– Chris LeDoux
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Don’t be afraid to go after what you want to do, and what you want to be. But don’t be afraid to be willing to pay the price.
– Lane Frost (Lane died in an accident, back in 1989. Being charged by a bull, just after completing his 8 second ride..)
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It’s a good thing you got bucked off. If you’d stayed on any longer, you might have been hurt. – Unknown
Imagine the life of an old time cowboy. Getting up before first light. It’s freezing cold outside. There’s animals to feed, young horses to train, fences to mend, stray cows to locate in the wilderness. When the cold give away for the first rays of light, it gets scorching hot. There’s no shade in sight, but you hear plenty of rattle snakes, that you need to watch out for. You’re not even halfway through your work day, but it feels like your back is going to break in two. Daylight starts to fade, and you haven’t even had one conversation with another human being.
The concept of rodeos, where cowboys (in the beginning it was only men/boys,) come together to show their skill in different ranch related events, makes sense when you think of what kind of lives these men most likely lived. This was long before the time of internet, and probably even before we drove cars/trucks to visit our friends, and travel the world. Most of these hard working cowboys likely lived, and worked their whole life on a secluded ranch, in the middle of nowhere. I personally know what that’s like, after working a couple years in Nevada’s desert, but I could drive in to town at least once a week, and I did communicate via the internet with my friends every day. The kind of solitude that this kind of life offers, becomes so much more manageable when you’re able to get together with other people from time to time. After all it’s not all that glamorous to get up before first light every day, feeding and caring for animals until it feels that you back is going to break in two, I can understand that it would feel awesome to get some credit for your hard earned skills, a couple times a year. Something that perhaps made the young cowboys work a little harder.
I admit that before understanding the history, and tradition behind rodeos, I didn’t understand why anyone would put themselves in this kind of danger. I still would never do it, but I definitely feel the thrill every time I go to a rodeo. There’s a lot of pride and tradition behind each event.
There’s a big difference between me and a real, legitimate working hand, or a world-champion rodeo cowboy. I play ’em, and I aspire to be like that, but those guys are tough.
– Luke Perry
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No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle.

– Winston Churchill

I have this famous Winston Churchill quote on a wooden sign, currently placed in my kitchen. I saw the wooden sign in a little country store, while walking around aimlessly, feeling sorry for myself for all the time I’ve wasted in a marriage that wasn’t meant to be. It sort of reminds me how horses makes me feel, no matter what the world around me is doing. Seeing that quote at the right time, when I really needed it, was a sign for me to take responsibility for my own life, and happiness. I’ve taken that quote with me on my travels, and I try to always put it where I can see it. No one have ever commented on the wooden sign, but for me, it means something.

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My rodeo photos are available as prints in my online gallery, just click on a photo that inspire you, and it will take you to my gallery.

My three nominees for the first day of this quote challenge is;

Jane, from Jane Lurie Photography . Simply because no-one master matching amazing images, with inspiring quotes, like Jane.

Eliza, from Eliza Waters. I never grow tired of watching her beautiful nature imagery.

My third nominee is Diana Prastka Stuckey, who’s positive, encouraging stories I want more of!

I hope you will accept the challenge! I can’t wait to see what you come up with 🙂

 

 

Love,

Ms Zen

 

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Weekend Coffee Share

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I can’t believe it’s already the weekend. This week have gone by faster than fast. How was yours? Please have some coffee with me, and tell me all about it!

I started out Monday being slightly tired, after a fun, action filled weekend at the rodeo. I took it a  little easy (for me,) on Monday (my friend E tells me that my life is always like boot camp, compared to hers.) I had to spend quiet some time to clean up space on my computer, to be able to download all the photos I took at the rodeo. I believe this is my favorite.

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I’m not done editing the photos from the rodeo yet. I’ll do a little at a time, and share them here as I go.

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My daughter was mesmerized by the events most of the time, but still, I think this jumping thing she did after everything was over, was her absolute favorite.

On Tuesday afternoon I went to see a friend of mine that lives a couple hours north of me, in Weed (CA.) I really enjoyed the drive. I drove over Shasta Lake, passed by Castle Crags, and Mt.Shasta to get to her. Seeing all that beauty up close makes me think of Tim McGrath’s song Humble and kind. Natures beauty does something to my soul, every time. It doesn’t matter how many times I’ve seen a beautiful place, it’s almost likes it grows a little every time, even if it took my breath away the first time. There is still some snow on Mt.Shasta, but the surroundings are green. 

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We’ve been making our new place a little more ours this week, both on the inside and the outside. I pretty much been dividing my time this week between my daughter’s school work, the horses, and the new place. It’s been a great week, with pleasant weather in the 75-85’s, a little hotter a couple afternoons. We’re supposed to have rain for three days now, which I welcome with open arms. I bet my garden are going to LOVE that. 

This is the humble beginning of my annual garden.

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Squash

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Cherry Tomatoes

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Spinach

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Garlic

My daughter have shown an interest in growing corn, for a couple years. It’s something she mentions on, and off. When I planned my garden this year, I hadn’t heard it for a while, so I did not make any plans for it. This week she’s been talking about it every day. Maybe because we’ve been working in the garden more. So we decided upon a place where she could grow a couple rows of corn. I prepared the spot yesterday. It’s an extension of the garden we’ve already made. I watered the ground there to make it softer, dug it out, filled it with a layer of old horse manure, another layer of tree shavings mixed with goat/sheep manure, and a top layer with soil from my compost, before planting the corn. I hope it will do the trick. It’s the firs time I attempt to grown corn, so that’s a little exciting. I admit that I could of done more research. I am usually better at researching everything I plan to grow, before planting. I didn’t this time. I wanted to get it in the ground before the rain. Rain will be unusual for us from now on, and I wanted to take maximum advantage of it.

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Our tiny corn field. I also planted some cucumbers right next to the fence. 

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The tiny cornfield, in front of the fenced in garden area. In the back of the garden is my container garden, currently consisting of; 4 pomegranate trees, lavender, cilantro, oregano, and basil. I just planted the kitchen herbs from seeds. I’m planning on adding both more fruit trees, and more herbs, to my container garden throughout the season. My container gardens have a tendency to get HUGE. I sold my whole container garden by the end of last season. I’m a little bit wiser, and know a little more about what I want in my garden now. It’s exciting to build it up again. I believe that container gardening, is something that’s just going to get bigger and bigger, as more people see the advantage of growing their own food, and how simple it can be.

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FTB Fancy Tradition

Ghost and Fancy, are enjoying their days in the new pasture. They are both looking great right now, and are in good spirits, showing more energy and Joie De Vivre than before. I work with each of them a couple times a day, about 15-30 min at a time. Depending on what we do.

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Ghost is in a period of processing things, and have asked me to slow down a little with introducing new things. I try to listen. He needs more time to feel completely comfortable with ropes, that’s a thing we’ve been working on a lot, with good progress, but he still needs time. He have no problem having my hands (he loves being touched and often begs me to just stand with him,) or my weight anywhere on him, but man made materials are scary. He had a little episode yesterday morning. I had just finished grooming him, and was going to play with him at liberty (without any equipment on.) He loves playing at liberty, and is very tuned in to me. Sometimes I think he tells me that he would love to be a trick horse. Anyways, before taking the halter off, I purposely let the lead rope slide over his back. He knows that I’m about to take the halter off, and knows that he have the lead rope attached to him. No surprises. He is usually cool with the rope sliding over his body. I’ve done it a lot, to desensitize him to this most scary object, that certainly could eat him..but yesterday he completely fell apart, and jumped up in the air, crashed into the round-pen, and started to run around like crazy. He is a very sensitive horse, and have days like this. He had very minimum interaction with people for the first (almost) 4 years of his life. Until January this year, when I bought him. Even though I feel terrible when he have episodes like this, it clearly tells me that his mind is not ready to proceed our training. We need to stay in the stage we are longer. That is OK. I’m in no rush, as long as we move in the right direction. If I feel that I can’t connect with him, it would be different, I would look for someone who could, but I feel that we do connect.

He ran around with the rope hanging over his back, dragging on the ground. He is responsive to my directions, even though he was freaked out, he respectfully changes direction when asked. Taking control over a horse’s hooves, by frequently changing direction is the easiest way to gain control over a situation. When this happens, I start to exaggerate breathing deep and slow, until he follows my lead. After he calmed down yesterday, we took a break, doing nothing together. He responds very well to this form of reward. Initially when he starts to relax, after a scary episode, he isn’t ready to be touched yet. After doing nothing together for a few minutes, I left him alone in the round-pen. To give him an opportunity to digest things. I came back ten minutes later, took the halter of, and caressed his whole body, inside his mouth, in his ears, on his legs, everywhere. It’s to make him feel my love, and also to tell him that it is OK, that I will always take care of things in a safe way, and listen to him, but he has to trust me. After that I opened the gate to the round-pen, and took him for a walk on the property, without a halter. He follows me with his head on my shoulder. When I stop after a few minutes, and sit down on the ground, he licks my right cheek. That horse has the biggest heart. Just being with him teaches me a lot. 

Fancy on the other hand is getting really comfortable with her new life. She is thriving. I’ve cleaned her up, and given her a job. My daughter rides her 15 min every day. Fancy still need to gain more weight, and get stronger, but light exercise (that will increase with her getting stronger,) is helping her to get stronger faster. She is so proud to have a job, and she takes excellent care of my daughter. My daughter have never ridden a horse as big as Fancy, and is not 100% comfortable with her height yet. My daughter knows how to ride by herself, but for now, she wants to be lead around. That’s OK. She insists that Fancy is her horse, and that she is going to ride her every day. My daughter is proud of herself for riding a big horse, despite her fear of height. I love seeing her conquer her fears, and grow in the process. It is a win/win for everyone. Fancy feels important, and is gaining health by the day. Ghost watches us with huge eyes from the other side of the fence. It’s very obvious that Fancy enjoys having my daughter on her back (photo here,) and I believe he understands that. I feel at peace, and very grateful.

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Thank you for having coffee with me. I really enjoyed your company. How is spring in your area? Is everything green? Are you enjoying having coffee on the porch this weekend? Tell me about it in a comment!

Love,

Ms Zen

 

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Happy Earth Day!

Earth Day was so busy here, that I never made a special post for this important day. This is a day worth celebrating, and I like to take some time to think about our part of the context. I shared my friend Eliza’s, Earth Day post earlier, and now I’m sharing Jane’s inspirational post. I love how she always match wonderful quotes with her marvelous photos. Enjoy!

Jane Lurie Photography

“Take nothing but pictures

Kill nothing but time

Leave nothing but footprints

To show you came by”

~ John Kay

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Preserve

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Adore

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Breathe

“We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.”

 ~Native American Proverb

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Save

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Respect

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Protect

“The environment is everything that isn’t me.”

~Albert Einstein

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Cherish

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Marvel

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Appreciate

“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.”

~John Muir

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Flourish

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Savor

Earth Day, Earth, Conservation, Nature, Environment, Photography, Animals, Nikon Love

Helpful links to learn more about the environment and conservation: 

The Nature Conservancy

National Park Service

African Wildlife Foundation

World Wildlife Fund

National Wildlife Federation

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