Believe me when I say I've been busier than a one-legged man in a butt-kickin' contest.
But I love it.
What I'm not lovin' is this weather. I hate being cold. I really shouldn't complain because DC/Virginia/Maryland are tucked into this little dry pocket and all around us from Maine to Mississippi across to Texas, Missouri, and Oklahoma and up north to Minnesota and Michigan everyone is buried in snow. (Knock on wood, we don't have any snow at all.)
Even our 30 degree temps don't compare to some of the 16 and 17 degree days that some of y'all have been experiencing. I talked to my mother on the phone in Southwest Missouri and they were having a 'heat wave' - the mercury had climbed to a whole 6 degrees which was quite a bit warmer than the -11 they'd had earlier in the morning. BBbbbrrrrrr.
(But then with all the hot air comin' out of D.C. it's no wonder we don't have a lot of snow.)
Watching the hard winter across the country reminds me of when Jay and I lived on the ranch and I never knew what kind of critter I'd wake up to find traipsing through my house. Sometimes I'd find 'remnants' of whatever animal it happened to be before I actually saw it.
One frigid February morning in 1988 right about sun-up, I sleepily made my trek to the kitchen to start breakfast, and before I reached the dining room threshold I saw a teeny, tiny little cow patty. I went from room to room but couldn't seem to find the culprit. When I went into Rachael's room the calf was curled up as close to her as she could be, her little head nestled in the back crook of Rachael's knee. It was precious.
Imagine the delight of a 3 year old girl waking up to 'kisses' from this sweet little creature.
(Gives a whole new meaning to the term 'cowlick', huh?).
Jay explained to Rachael that the calf's mother didn't want it so we'd have to take care of it. With an amaing maternal instict and skill that I'd come to recognize and admire 23 years later, Rachael immediately took charge. She named the calf 'Sondra' and insisted on holding the bottle during the many feedings.
Weaning time was difficult but necessary as "Sondra" became so attached to Rachael. Poor Rachael cried her heart out when Sondra was moved to another pasture away from the house. Poor Sondra didn't understand that at 125 pounds and growing she couldn't just run up to Rachael and 'love' on her without hurting her.
Both of them grieved.
But as little girls do, they grow up, move on to other things.
Sondra, on the other hand remained a part of our family until she died of natural causes at age 12.
Hmm....it's amazing how just a little talk about the weather can take you down memory lane.