Thanks to everyone who is joining me on the Purina 60 Day See The Difference Challenge. I'll be posting the giveaway of the two Flip video cameras on Friday and I hope everyone will enter. Thanks again to Purina for their generosity.
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I have some thoughts to share today so I'll just jump in.
Do you think of yourself as a color? I do. No, I’m not talking about the colors that perhaps suit a person best. I’ve never been a slave to fashion. I wear what I like, and what I like is pink.
And what about the movie Legally Blonde? Do you remember it? The first time I watched Elle Woods, I knew I had found my long lost twin. It wasn’t just the pink pom poms on the pencils nor was it her scented stationery (scented stationary does always makes things better) nor was it Bruiser’s pink outfits. It was her entire attitude, her upbeat view on life, so quick to defend others, so quick to find the best in every situation. A pink person persona.
Yes, I’m one of those “pink” people. Ask Mountain Man. He’ll tell you it’s true. Whether it’s pink towels or linens or dishware, my entire world is filled with pink. “Mountain Man, can we paint the house pink?” I’m always asking. “No, no pink houses,” he says.
And yes, we dine by pink candle light, no bulbs in this house whether they are good old incandescent bulbs or the new fangled energy saving, mercury leaking kind. Pink candlelight makes everything better. I can’t see the cobwebs, my wrinkles don’t show and at the same time, we are conserving resources. Yes, try pink candlelight and you might be surprised at the difference it makes.
My friend Barb will also tell you I’m a pink person. I dress the horses in pink; pink halters, pink bridles, pink saddle pads, pink blankets. And when I discovered there really is a store named Pink Equine, I was thrilled.
Pink is more than a color it’s an attitude that carries over into all parts of my life. Until this June when I changed to blue.
“One month. You have to stay still for one month in order for your eye to heal.” My doctor told me.
"What do you mean stay still? Can I ride?”
“Well, I can ask Barb to put a lead rope on Midnight and lead me around the ring.”
“Can I garden?” I’m still hoping to win the giant pumpkin contest at the fair as well as help fill the local food bank’s shelves.
“What can I do?”
“Stay still. And move your head as little as possible.”
Until you’ve been told not to move your head, you probably don’t realize just how much a head can move during the course of a day. Try it today and see how often you use your head without realizing it and let me know what happens.
At dinner each night, I shake my head vigorously to agree with Mountain Man who speaks little but is always, always correct.
“No, stop it.” I silently told myself as I went to shake my head to agree.
Mountain Man did notice. “Is something wrong? Did I say something?”
“No, remember the doctor told me I can’t move my head.”
I decided to pass the time reading a book on making soap. A wonderful book filled with easy to make recipes.
I was full of enthusiasm until I discovered soap uses lye and the use of lye comes with all sorts of warnings.
“Mountain Man, I’m going to try making soap when I’m better.”
“No, you’re not. You’re liable to blow up the house and even if you don’t, you’ll end up hurting yourself.” He knows me too well.
Unlike Mountain Man who reads instruction manuals front to back before he starts a project, I refuse to read directions.
In fact, show me a “How To” anything and my brain automatically turns off, starts to wander, writing stories, making rhymes.
I never follow directions. Except this time. My vision was at stake.
A long month passed. I watched weeds cover my garden. Only the marks I made daily on the calendar ticking off the month got me through my enforced rest.
Finally, the big day came.
“You’re good to go. My doctor told me.”
“You mean I can ride again, move my head again?”
“What about hitting my head? Is that okay too?”
My doctor gave me the strangest look. “It’s never a good idea to hit your head.”
“But it’s okay?”
“Just try to be careful.”
Careful. That’s not a word in my vocabulary. I want to live life, savor every second I’m alive, experience new things and continue on this incredible journey.
“La la land.” That’s what Mountain Man calls it. “You live in La la land.”
I used to resent him saying that as though I weren’t aware of the realities of life but I’ve come to understand him better and he’s right again, I do live in la la land. It’s a good place to live, a pink place, where life is full of small miracles every day.
I leave the doctor's office and head home to weed my garden. I talk to my pumpkins, encouraging words to keep them growing. I start riding again, working with my minis and spending time singing with the turkeys and sure enough, bang, I hit my head on a closed upper stall door as I follow the geese outside.
I see stars, sit for a minute. No damage done. I remind myself to be more careful next time. But I’ll forget. I always do.
I get going again. I look at the view from my barn, an incredible view, never the same, changing constantly as clouds roll through, rainbows come and go, seasons change. Mountain Man has promised to finish building my cupola in the barn this year. It will have seating so I can climb into the clouds with some paper, write my thoughts, read a book and look over the mountains. He understands how I feel about this farm. How close I feel to God when I look at His creation.
I take out my inexpensive point and shoot camera. Can’t afford a fancy camera, rather spend the money at Pink Equine if I had it, but we don’t and that’s okay too. And anyway, I wouldn’t be able to figure out how to use a fancy camera. Lenses, f stops, instruction booklets; my mind will blur and I’ll lose patience. No, I’m a point and shoot kind of person. But I do try to capture the vistas for you. Try to put how I feel about our mountain top farm into words. I fall short.
To be honest, I think all the world is a beautiful place and the people who fill my world are beautiful as well. Ask my co-workers where I used to work in a city far away from Vermont before Mountain Man came into my life.
Every morning, I’d come in bubbling over with optimism, full of love for life; for them. I’d tell them how beautiful they were, what a fantastic morning it was.
“Go away.” They would say. “You’re too much to take before coffee.”
And I’d smile and go away, look out my window to the vista that surrounded me, pavement, tall buildings, urban. I’d think about how beautiful a place it was, how fortunate I am and have been.
It’s not about money or possessions you accumulate. It’s about the depth you bring to the experience of living. How you open yourself to new challenges every day, how you confront pain and loss, and how you keep on living, savoring each moment, reaching out to others with an encouraging word, a small act of kindness. It’s about being willing to bang your head, say no big deal, and keep on going.
“Live Your Dreams, Share Your Hearts” is the motto I chose for my Red Pine Mountain blog. It’s my pink philosophy. I believe we are here for a brief time and we only have this one second in time we can count on. Be kind to each other, encourage each other, savor each moment and thank God every day for all your blessings.
And I do thank God daily as well for the friendships I’ve made from both my Red Pine Mountain blog and my Grit blog. People I might never meet who have taken the time to write to me, to share their thoughts with me, to send me a kind word, to let me know I've made a small difference to them. You have impacted my life with your comments, your emails, your kindness in ways you will perhaps never know. You are treasures in my life and I thank you.
Mountain Man, Mountain Woman and the ever increasing zoo can always be found at http://redpinemountain.com