A New Box of Crayons



It finally happened; my mother sold the ranch. The place that nestled in my heart as home no matter where in the world we were living. My roots; where I went to renew my soul and the legacy that kept me sane when my life unraveled.

Not only is it some of the most beautiful country on the planet, it was where I found unconditional love and acceptance, steadiness and encouragement. Ripe lemon yellow. I had some difficult times as a teenager and my grandparents saved my life when I was drowning. Deep ocean green. Here I was given responsibility and I learned accountability; there was no micromanaging; no secondary agenda. “This is your job: do it right and if you don’t understand, ask. Use sense, for God’s sake”.  Lupine purple. Once I didn’t check something on my equipment before starting to work in the hayfield but caught the mistake before it became the major problem that would have fouled up everybody that day. Whew…that would not have been pretty; note to self: pay attention. Hot red of a near-miss.

There I learned the literal meaning of the phrase “make hay while the sun shines”. Honey gold.

I learned how to read the weather and how to make bread; how to swear and that you shouldn’t carry a battery next to your body because the traces of battery acid would ventilate your shirt in a most memorable way. New aspen leaf green.

I could sing to my heart’s content on the tractor because the engine drowned me out; I am the only one who enjoys my singing. Rocky mountain sky blue. I came to understand that life could be short and hard; it could also be unbelievably rich and beautiful….sometimes all on the same day (this has nothing to do with the previous sentence about my singing). I learned irrigation from The Master; my dad said Grandpa could make water run uphill. Here I found I was also a dog person. Mitzy’s cream-white fur.

I learned that I can’t count cattle or sheep worth a damn when they are milling around in a herd and that I loved chickens; that little things mattered and wasting resources was…..well, wasteful. Dirt brown. When the chickens got too old to lay eggs they became dinner and Grandma herself put them down with her little knife. I still don’t know how she did that but it was quick and humane; the circle of life in action. Scarlet.

Last year it also became a place of refuge for my horse Winchester and I am forever grateful to my uncle and my friends who led him up through the fields and hid him from my deranged ex-husband. I was able to find a good home for him last month and last week my overworked guardian angels sent me a farmer who bought my tractor. Tequila sunrise orange.

A year and a half ago when it became apparent that things were not going to work out with my ex-husband and me I asked All The Powers That Be to help me take care of who and what I was responsible for. Now my old house has owners who love it and there is life and happiness in it again. Pale lavender. The barn was so toxic after my ex walked away the birds wouldn’t even fly through, much less build nests in the rafters. I cleaned up the wreckage and smudged the space and by the time I sold it the birds had returned. Robin’s egg blue, of course.

I found homes for my two remaining kitties. Golden green cat eyes. Winchester lives not far from me now and I can visit him. Horse shoe silver. My uncle says the tractor will probably run another hundred years hauling produce in from the fields…and I will buy some of those fruits and veggies! How cool is that? Eggplant.

The ranch is protected. My friends who bought it are good stewards and I am happy it has passed to them. It is under a conservation easement and that is a huge comfort. Cobalt blue and sage green.

I won’t lie; I am sad but also grateful beyond words; I received the help I needed. I will happily spend the rest of my days paying these blessings forward. The Universe has my back and this knowledge sends my heart soaring; my roots have become wings and the colors of my life shine true and clear again.

Eye candy

I can’t be the only one who experiences life as colors……do you see them, too?