(A friend emailed me today, encouraging me to take all the goodness and kindness from family and friends as treasures into my heart, storing them well. I thought that phrase, storing them well, is so exactly representative of what I have been doing. Storing up rest, and ease, and peace. The kids are storing up on pet love. It's a far cry from the beach dogs of Goa.)
YaYa, getting her horse ready for riding. She's an industrious little brusher. Charlie is an elderly horse, very gentle, very slow. Good for kids. Sadly, he's getting to the end of his life.
Tj readjusting YaYa's helmet.That's Johanna, in the background. She's Tj and Mark's lovely new daughter-in-law. She and Eric live here on the ranch, in a cabin a few miles away, and she and Tj have been wonderful about giving the kids riding lessons.
At first, Johanna led Charlie.
Then Tj gave YaYa a riding lesson in the arena. She's concentrating pretty hard.
Oh, just look at her!
So cute. I just want to squeeze her. She rode back to the barn on her own. (With us close by.)
Kid A also did some riding, and got his own lesson. He looks handsome on his horse.
And Leafy! Leafy turned into a warrior. Charlie was led around the yard with the warrior on his back.
We've also been working on schoolwork while sitting in the sun. We need to take every opportunity to get the last books read from last year's curriculum, because the new one is coming soon. But the kids are definitely getting a well-rounded education.
I've also been making necklaces, which I'll be putting up on Etsy. I was looking for some jewelry to sell, when I was in Bangkok, something to help with the cost of traveling, and I realized that I wasn't crazy about anything that I was seeing. I was crazy about the stones and beads I saw, however.
So I've been making some stuff.
I miss India, also. There is always a feeling of immense blessing and happiness over being here, and just underneath, a thread of longing for my little house in the village, for lunchtime on the roof. For crowds and dusty hot days and severe, staring faces. But here we have grass and mild breezes and animals to love. Friends and dinnertime around the table. So the longing is just that little thread, put away until it will be time to go back. It is the traveler's curse, I think. The little thread of longing that weaves through everything.