Saturday, August 29, 2009

The Boy's Gone Crazy

He seemed normal enough. An all-American rough and tumble kid, baseball in the summers, football in the fall. Yes, he was normal. Normal, that is until he got bitten by the bug....

The way I heard the story, it all started innocently enough. An easy phys-ed option for a homeschooler. It was his mom Jewel's idea, his dad was fine with it. Oh, if only his parents had realized the firestorm that would rain down on their lives, their time and particularly their finances from that point on, they would have run kicking and screaming from the idea.  If only...

They tell me I had something to do with the craziness that followed. I don't remember it that way at all. I am sure they sought me out. I didn't even really know them. I was just trying to be's not my fault...really... I am some degree...

Here's the way I remember it: Jewels to The Boy: "Would you like to take riding lessons with some really cute blond girls?" The Boy: "Yes." (See? I had nothing to do with it.)

So off they went to the farm of The Darling Blond Girls for lessons on one of their show horses. It was great,  The Boy discovered that he really enjoyed being around the beautiful, fiery Arabs and The Darling Blond Sisters. He also found he had a lot of natural ability and soon became a very capable rider. (Bitten, and I was nowhere around.)

Once young people learn to ride, the next step is usually showing. I don't know why, I'm just telling you, that's what happens. Darling Girls to The Boy: "Would you like to show our horse, Financial Firestorm at the county fair? We'll be there, we can share him." The Boy: "Okay."

Showing sounds like a fine idea. Let's say you want to show western, you''ll need to get an outfit to show in. You need boots, leather chaps, a belt with a HUGE silver buckle, a hat, gloves. If you are a guy, a western shirt and black jeans. For girls you need more, so much more and so expensive that all horse show mom's are sworn to secrecy about it. And this is just the rider, the horse needs stuff too, a western saddle and bridle (usually loaded down with silver) and a fancy saddle pad.

Okay, fine you think, although showing Western is expensive, we can swing it... but wait, there's more. Most kids don't want to show just Western. They want to show English too, and maybe jumping, saddle seat, speed and action, dressage. It goes on and on, each discipline needing it's own outfit, boots, saddle and gear. If only they'd known.

So The Boy shows, and The Boy wins, and The Boy is hooked. It is now too late for Jewels to put a stop to this.  The stage is set, and the madness ensues.

The Darling Girl's horse is old, too old it is decided,  for The Darling Girl and The Boy to share it  anymore. This is a problem, a big one, because The Boy is hooked.  The Darling Girl's mom mentions to Jewels that she knows a person that has talented equids and maybe, just maybe, one might be available for The Boy to use. Here is where I entered the picture:

I've got ponies. Wonderful ponies. I also have beautiful horses. Too many really. I LOVE them, I NEED them! I CAN'T live without them!!! (I know, I'm working on this area of my life...) So Jewels called me up out of the blue and tells me The Blond Girl's mom has given her my number.. I repeat...I was just trying to be nice.

You know what? I didn't know what I was getting into either. You can't just say here's a pony, have fun. They didn't have any stuff. No saddle, no bridle, no barn, no fence, no trailer. So The Pony would have to stay on my farm and The Boy would have to come to her. But... He wanted to show.

Before I knew what hit me I was taking The Boy, The Pony and Jewels to 4-H meetings, riding lessons, horse shows and the county fair. I didn't mind. Jewels is an amazing cook and I'm not. She often paid me in food. She is kind of like a tightly wound Martha Stewart and her husband is the Energizer Bunny Man. Soon my flower beds looked amazing, and my parties and family gatherings were  planned, complete with food prepared and delivered. It was AWESOME! (I miss that.)

Another thing, it is impossible to stay a stranger with their family, before you know it you are on their Christmas list and invited to Easter dinner. I can't even BEGIN to explain them. It's like a modern day Walton Family vortex. I have never seen a family that has so much fun together or likes each other so much. I think they make up holidays just to be together more. And there are so many of them.  They pull you in with a tornadic force and tumble you out the other side well fed, laughed out and loved up. You find yourself thinking "Goodnight John Boy, goodnight Mary Sue, goodnight Jewels, goodnight Energizer Bunny Man, goodnight Boy.   Anyway..

So the Boy's father caved in and built some fences and shelters. The pony went to their place. Eventually they bought a horse trailer and they were on their own. The Boy grew. He moved up from The Pony to one of my horses.

In the course of time The Boy's  parents bought him his own horse. Not too long after that, his dad even built him a beautiful riding arena, and The Boy proceeded to transform his young, untrained horse into a muscular athlete, competing with him and winning at show after show.

Now though, The Boy is a boy no more..he is a young man, tall and handsome, an amazingly gifted rider. Today he sold his horse for many times what his parents paid for it, a testament to his talent and his training abilities, as well as a nice nest-egg for college. And guess what. He needs another horse.

Hmmm, I wonder what Jewels is making for dinner..

Where is love?

Love is patient.

Love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.

Love is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.

Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.

Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love covers offenses.

Perfect love casts out fear.

True love cannot be quenched.

Love always builds up.

Love is God is...LOVE.

Truth. Fo sho.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Facebook Floozy

Last month I was fine, happy, innocent if you will. Practically an internet newlywed. I didn't mean for it to happen...but goofing around on the web when I should have been busy doing something productive (like arranging my Tupperware according to color and size), I met someone online. Actually, I met 75 someones...I discovered Facebook.

I didn't mean to fall in love, I couldn't help it. They make me laugh, encourage me when I'm down, remember my birthday. We've just become so close, my 105 friends and I. There is no way I could give them up, don't ask me to. I'm hooked, practically addicted. I went from innocent to Facebook party girl in two short weeks. These days I'm forever wondering when and where I'm going to get my next Facebook hit. I think about it even when I'm nowhere near a computer. Usually I can't wait to get home to check and see if anyone new has "friended" me. Last time my friend Tori visited from Chicago we sat our laptops side by side at the counter, me checking my Facebook, she writing her blog.

I bet this is how any addict feels. The anticipation, the thrill, the score, the satisfaction and then of course the remorse and guilt when realizing how much of myself I've wrapped up in this endeavor. I'll sit down in the morning to just take a quick peek at the new posts before starting my chores and when I next look up from the computer three hours have passed..

Check this out. F.A.D. There really is a Facebook Addiction Disorder, I KNEW IT! Great, another acronym to add to my collection: A.D.D, P.M.S, and now F.A.D. I hope there's a 12 step program for this or I'm going to end up in marriage counseling as the dishes and dirty clothes pile up around me. So...

Hello, my name is Pam and I have F.A.D...