count dachula

scary doxy

And the Wiener, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting

On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;


And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon’s that is dreaming,


And the lamplight o’er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;


And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor


Shall be lifted – nevermore!

rising above

Booted the Texan out of bed at 5:30 in the A.M. yesterday (Sunday) to accompany me to Palo Duro Canyon to photograph the Pirates of the Canyon Balloon Rally.  I think every man, woman, child and yayhoo owning a camera or camera phone was in the canyon.  I’ve never SEEN so many cameras and tripods! 

All of us camera aficionado yayhoos were there to witness the spectacular balloon colors rising in one of the most underrated scenic places on earth.  Our Palo Duro Canyon is sometimes described as a ‘mini’ Grand Canyon.  One of the features making it so fantastic…so unbelievable is this:  one drives and drives on many a mile of treeless, perfectly table-flat farmland when approaching the canyon.

Where is this canyon, Texan, you keep talking about?  There is nothing but sky!  Nothing.  But…then….WHAM!  You see it and you drive down, down, down into the purple spanish-skirt walls and the cottonwood lined creek.  The canyon meanders for miles and miles.  It has a rich history of explorers and famous Indian battles.  If you ever find yourself in the Texas Panhandle…you should see it.

We got there BEFORE SUNRISE. Sorry to shout, but that’s motivation! Capturing the sunrise would be a challenge.
While Mr. Sun was rising in one horizon, Mr. Moon was trying to disappear before I caught him.  Not so fast, mister!
It was a stirring sight witnessing the behemoths rise from the ground.  Oh, the vividness of the colors and the loud PSSHH, PSSHH of the fire above the baskets!  Look how the tall Texan is dwarfed by these giants!
The weather was pristine, crisp….softly memorable.  Although the climate seemed perfecto-the balloons did not fly.  They stayed tethered safely to the ground with ropes.  The light wind was in the wrong direction.  The chase vehicles could not follow where the wind would take the balloons.  Didn’t matter.  The oohhs and aahhs of the young ‘uns was a recipe for my dumb grin.  A Sunday morning not soon forgotten.  When the time came to leave, we loaded our canines and began the ascent out of the canyon.

Our star boarder….grand-dog Rose.  She enjoyed the morning intensely.  Time for another longing look.

rosewballoons2
Of course, dear reader…..there’s one more.  The wiener dog spent the cool morning in her lovely faux- shearling lined dog coat (fashioned to resemble a horse blanket) with the Roxy Doxy monogram emblazoned across her back.  She’d boldly sniff unsuspecting people’s ankles, but if they acknowledged her or said a friendly hel-lo, she would scamper back to our side.  Snob dog.
Balloons!!

I’m grateful for the day.  Hope you enjoyed our little balloon festival and you didn’t mind having your ankles sniffed.
Wishing you untethered flight this week. 

marrying Trader Joe’s

I adore Trader Joe’s.  I want to marry him.  Seriously (sorry, Texan), I have a ‘thing’ for the odd guy in the loud Hawaii shirt.  Regretfully, ours is a long-distance love affair.  One of those ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’ relationships

Trader Joe’s does not live in my town (sniffle).  I must drive four excruciatingly long hours (Albuquerque) to steal a visit and spend quality time with him.

What do I love about Trader’s?  Let me count the ways, honey……..

Value.  Trader’s does not charge those crazy ‘health food’ store prices.  The items are priced competitively with other supermarkets, except for one big difference.  The products are WAY better.  Delicious.  Fresh tasting.  Not a lot of added gunk…just good stuff.

Wine.  They carry wine from all over the globe.  Again…tasty and cheap.  I’m proudly low-class and I enthusiastically imbibe ‘two-buck Chuck’.  Charles Shaw.

Nuts.  Spiced pecans addictive as meth….really!  Honey-coated peanuts.  They’re never far from my side-I keep a bag in my car at all times.  Must keep my fat and blood sugar levels climbing!  These two are my faves, but for you chocolate-lovers, there’s every variety of nut coated in any kind of chocolate you desire.

Soups.  You’re thinking hyperbole, but the Creamy Corn and Roasted Pepper Soup is to..die…for.  I fainted just thinking about it.  Luckily, the Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper Soup acts as smelling salts and promptly revives me.  I even turn cartwheels.

Sauces/Dressings.  The Salsa Verde is a regular on eggs, enchiladas, meats, ANYTHING at my house.  Got carried away and laid some on the wiener dog the other day…horrors!
doxy profile
 
All of the marinaras and other tomato sauces are top-notch.  They simply taste fresher….like homemade….than anything else I have ever laid a taste bud upon.  My favorite dressing is the Sesame Soy Ginger Vinaigrette.  Perfect for the popular Asian-themed salads.

Baked Goods and Cereals.  Not low-cal, but incredibly delicious.

Sweet Potato Fries.  Need I say more?

Since I’m shopping from out-of-town, I don’t usually buy things in the perishable section of the store.  I don’t know much about the meats, cheeses and such-but I’d love to try them.  I was in Santa Fe a couple of weeks ago.  Trader and I enjoyed a quickie.  I swept up and down the aisles grabbing handfuls of aforementioned foodiful dee-lights.  It was so satisfying, I slowly savored a cigarette in my vehicle afterwards.  I lovingly made a Trader Joe’s cache of delights in my pantry.  Looks like I’m planning for a long, snowy, hard winter.  Be prepared…my motto.  Shhh…..I’m showing you (cuz you’re special) my stash, but don’t be knocking on my door this winter looking for corn soup.  I’ll feign ignorance.  Behold!!

Trader’s are you listening?  A hungry woman in West Texas is yearning for more of you.  Missing you.  Savoring every last condiment and nut from you.  Make an honest woman of me.  Please….can we set a date??

Savor every last morsel of your weekend.

slip of the tongue

Happy start of another week.  Here’s a short political video I found online this AM.  It made me giggle.  It’s short.  YOU MUST WATCH IT.  A fresh breath of honesty amidst a stinky, stale wind of political discourse.  Gotta love a women who tells the truth!   Enjoy!

This slip-up reminds me of how massively I stressed over the pronunciation of a name at my big emcee gig recently.  I sweated bullets (and shotgun shells) over this name.  This individual is wonderfully nice, but in a pickle of stress and stage-fright, one could go tremendously WRONG in the articulation of this man’s moniker.  What was the tricky name I navigated flawlessly?

Prenis  (pree-nus).  Could you pronounce this in the big, hot spotlight??

sunset 1

Wishing you calm in the spotlight this week.

gracias Senor!

All of you witnessed it.  The capsule being hoisted out of the ground with a previously entombed miner.  Thirty-three times (plus the rescue workers) we witnessed a miraculous rebirth.  Another chance at life.  Miners pointing to the sky, or making the sign of the cross, or kissing Mother Earth.  Some miners fell to their knees in humble, thankful prayer.  Made me think I should spend more time there….not in Chile, but on my knees.

The shirts with the word Gracias Senor! (thank the Lord, or thank God) emblazened across the front seemed appropros.

Lots of dedicated folks deserve a big Gracias shout-out.  No doubt about it.  Thanking El Senor is a good place to start.

I haven’t been lifted out of a dark, hot mine into the blinding light….not literally.  But most days I recognize the blessing of warm sunshine in my life.

So…today….Friday….is Gracias Senor! Day.  I’m giving the Big Man a shout out for those miners.  I’m giving Him an extra shout out for the love of my family.  I’m even shoutin’ out for the opportunity to blog.  Yup….and for you, too.

You got a gracias for El Senor?   Don’t be shy….leave your shout out in the comments and we’ll all be grateful together.

Have a glorious weekend.

sunset windmill

run for your life

Played golf in the Land of Enchantment last weekend.  The scenery, food, company and golf courses were first rate.  Some of the signs around the course amused me.

Does the Texan look like he is staying aware or does he look scared s**tless?  He ain’t afraid of no venomous snakes!

Moi….staying aware.  They really don’t want you to waste time looking for lost balls.   Snakes here, don’t bother searching for errant balls….move along.  Be aware-not afraid or running around like a chicken with his head chopped off!   Calm awareness is key.
Here are some other potential dangers to bring to your awareness.  Try NOT to be frightened.

robgolf

Sorry, Texan.

possum

Caught this criminal one evening while I was trying to trap ANOTHER feral cat who shows interest coming in my doggie door. I released him for good behavior…he inhabits the hill behind my house.

Fair! 114a

This awareness poster somehow reminds me of the next awareness poster.

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Fair! 007a

No blog post is complete without

card shark1

The card shark wiener dog!  I KNEW you’d complain if I didn’t include her in your awareness.

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Be VERY afraid.  Run for your life…….

mashed-frog

Remember…..practice calm, safe awareness the remainder of this week. Hopefully, you won’t meet a rattlesnake or a runaway golf cart.  Stay safe, people.

winner’s circle of life

(A wonderful mare I owned who shared some of Secretariat’s bloodlines.  Do you like my goat?  This was taken in 1996…explaining the horrid ‘mom jeans’)

Happy Monday all!  Hope everyone had the opportunity to see the new movie Secretariat.  You must see this movie.

Most of you know I ride and show Quarter horses, so I am unabashedly biased in my love for all things equine.  Even if you don’t know a stirrup from a girth strap, you will enjoy this movie.  The movie addresses the quality of greatness.  We see greatness in the horse, in the stubborn faith of the owner Penny Chenery Tweedy.  We see greatness in the wacky, unconventional horse trainer and in the grit of the petite jockey.

Check out this wonderful blog post addressing the leadership principles from the movie.  It’s an enlightening and inspiring read.

One of my favorite quotes in the movie states “It’s not whether they think we won.  It’s whether we think we won.”  This resonates with me because in the fickle world of horse showing, one minute you’re the blue ribbon-the next minute you’re the dookie pile.  You do your best.  You put yourself out there.  Who knows what will happen?  But, you know what?  I’m a winner every time I throw my leg over my horse.  That’s right……I’m a winner because I’m out there…doing something.  I have faith I’ll grow in knowledge and increase my skill level.  I’m a winner because I’m not home napping on the barcalounger.  Lastly, I’m a winner because I’m privileged to ride one of God’s greatest creatures.  It’s always a privilege and a blessing.  I’m grateful.

Another powerful movie scene shows Secretariat’s trainer burning all the old news clippings of his famous failures with past horses.  He’s done with clinging to the failures of the past.  How about you and I gather our past failures, regrets and disappointments and toss them into a bonfire and torch it today?  They’re gone….outta here…burned to ashes….scattered in the wind.  Our lessons are learned, but we never cling to failure….nope that’s not the way we roll.

I think every one of you is doing something today that classifies you as a winner.  Believe it and take your rightful place in the winner’s circle.  *****flashbulbs popping*****look at you*****aren’t you something?!*****
Winner’s circle love to all this week.