Soon, The Wildflowers

Everyone looks forward to “springtime”, none more so than those who live in the north. Our winters are neither short, nor mild. Cabin fever hits us `long about late February, but we have quite a wait in front of us before relief comes. A surge of hope brightens the mood on that first warm, sunny day in March. Then, it snows and blows again. Just when our spirit sags back into winter weariness, the unmistakable song of a Meadowlark jerks you to attention! You remember what faith is all about: believing in something you may not be able to see or touch, and yet you know your hope is safe.

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  1. Debbie says:

    I am reminded once again of my western roots…! After I read your post I closed my eyes for a moment so I could visit the sage covered mountains of my native state Nevada. I sooooo miss the fragrance of damp sagebrush…. It rains a lot in New England, but there is no "fresh smell of sage" to go with it. I was just thinking about that the other day as it rained and poured here for more than 5 days.

    On a brighter note: I remember the beauty of wild flowers in the high desert. Just spectacular! Here in the Northeast we have our own spring splendor…When the trees and shrubs begin to leaf out and blossom it is with great boldness! Neon Greens, hot pinks, bright corals, ravishing reds, royal purples, and the sunny yellow daffodils that punctuate the road to my house in spring. Having faith is easy in February, for we know what is coming! We are lucky to have such beauty to enjoy where ever we call home!
    Thank you for sharing your lovely life and photos! I always look forward to your posts here!


  2. RanchFarmgirl says:

    Hi all you farmgirls! I thought maybe I ought to mention the names of the wildflowers in the photos…in case some of you were interested. Sego Lily, Wild Sweet Pea, Bitter Root, Gumbo Lily, and two versions of Penstemmon. I’ll be posting more photos of our wildflowers later. The first wildflowers to show up here are Buttercups and Sweet Peas. I remember my Grandma holding a Buttercup under my chin and saying, "If your skin looks yellow, that means you like boys…Yep, it’s yellow." I replied, "Nuh-Uh, I’ll NEVER like boys!!"
    Thank you again for your wonderful comments and personal emails! Your fellow  farmgirls have told me how much they enjoy reading the comments left by others.  ~ Shery on the prairie

  3. Rene Foust says:

    Absolutely beautiful!! I am envious I have never lived out west but I have visited there and it is simply awe inspiring! Thanks for the beautiful pictures and words.

  4. Kelly says:

    We are even further north in Canada, and all of what you said holds true. Last week spring was in the air and this week it is snowing and cold. I enjoy your blog but really wanted to comment on what fabulous pictures you take. What kind of camera do you use? Enjoy calving!!

  5. Heather Hansen says:

    I don’t live on a ranch or a farm…yet 🙂 🙂 🙂 However, I thoroughly enjoyed reading your article. I love animals and nature. Your pictures where wonderful. It’s like God took a small paintbrush and painted all the colors by hand. Simply amazing.
    I did visit a pen-pal in France many years ago. Her family lived on a small farm. I remember one morning seeing them go one direction towards the barn…not longer after they are going the other way with a new baby calf. Beautiful.:)

  6. RanchFarmgirl says:

    Thank you Kelly! I don’t have a ‘big gun’ as cameras go. It is just a Sony Alpha 100 DSLR. I think the Canon Rebel XTI is sort of comparable. I use the auto setting a LOT because … A: I’m too lazy to fiddle with all the details when you mess around with manual settings … and B: I’m too lazy to learn how … and C: when we’re out and about working and riding, I don’t have the time to do much more than adjust my camera from one auto setting to another. ‘Auto’ makes photography much more user friendly to someone who looks at is as one hobby among many other interests. The ‘real’ photo artist is one who focuses on photography as a singular passion. Pun intended. I’m just having a little fun with my camera as I go about the business of living. Sometimes I get lucky. Most of the time I use the delete button more than anything else.  :o)  Shery

  7. Reba says:

    Hey Shery, I so enjoyed your blog. And I could almost "smell" the sagebrush. I went out your way in 2000 for the first time. It was so funny; I came back trying to find that same smell, somehow. I found the "sage" scent by Yankee Candle Company, but it is nothing like the "real" thing when visiting out west. The pictures are so beautiful, as well as your horses! I am in awe of your landscape, the animals, and the love of life that God is able to place in us humans, to enjoy what He created! Thanks again!

  8. Jena Giest says:

    I love seeing all the baby calves in the brush and all the new happen. What a wonderful job you did showing us all that you and your husband do. It really sounds like you truly do enjoy life. What a blessing.

  9. RanchFarmgirl says:

    Hi Jena! For others reading these comments…"Jena" is my husband’s ‘baby girl’…who at this point in her life as two children in grade school and one baby boy! Thanks Jena for stopping in to say hello. I know you remember well the goings on of ranch work this time of year as you and your two sisters did a lot of riding while helping your dad.  ~ Shery, her step-mom

  10. Jennifer White-Mandujano says:

    Sherry, this blog is so wonderful! I’ve never been out west but after reading your blog and seeing the pictures I feel like I was there for a short visit. The light blue flowers on the stalk were sooo pretty ( almost as pretty as those colorful boots!!)  Take care and thanks for your blog.

  11. Grace~katmom says:

    Hey Shery,
    I have to giggle at your "Lip Balm & Hairy Lips" comment…
    I have 3 kitties, all of which are shedding like mad right now…and goodness knows you’d think I would know better than to apply anything on my lips before brushing them…
    Great minds think alike! lololol!
    Hairy lip hugz

  12. Terces says:

    While our winter hardly qualifies compared to yours, I too, experience the same thrill of Spring! Perhaps living as much out of doors as we do has me even more related to the small shifts in the seasons and the miracles you mention.
    Can’t wait for our first calf!
    Thanks so much for sharing in such an inspiring way.
    A group of college students came to the farm the other day for a tour and visit and NONE of them were interested in an agricultural life, they actually think of being on a farm as a vacation! Their sharing awoke me to how important it is that we farmers make this the "best party in town!" as it truly is!
    Thanks, Happy Spring,

  13. Linda says:

    Hi Shery – your comment on the shedding reminded me of a note from a friend a few days ago. She had been out brushing her horse and said to remind her never to wear fleece or lip gloss again when doing that.

    Love the pictures – it’s just beautiful and the babies – so wonderful! Thank you for sharing.

  14. Martha Cookame says:

    Great photos, Shery – our Hereford calves are arriving, also, a couple born each day since March 20. Wish I had a camera, as our small group of Texas Longhorn mamas are having their calves; so far, one totally brown, one with white body, spotted, with brown head, and third one all white with many spots on head. So glad we have had mild weather in the 40’s and 50’s, this spring. We hope to have all of them branded and out on pasture by May 10. Love seeing your country thru your photo lens!  Martha, near Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

  15. Carol McElroy says:

    Shery, I love the way you write, I feel that I am right there seeing the eggs in the nest, grooming the horses. I would love to be that close to all the baby calves. And, note to self, no lip balm!

  16. MaryBeth says:

    Hi there—What a wonderful yet extremely busy time of the year. My daughter and husband live on the Family Ranch in Ritzville, Wa. And while calving is over now, the end of January to the first part of March is a mad scramble. CALVING! The babies are so cute and this year they lucked out with only one orphan baby but an older cow lost her calf and these two bonded right away. A little R&R (HA) now and branding is next. MB

  17. Terry says:

    Shery, you’re truly in your element. Blessings sweet ranch girl.

  18. Hello, everyone.

    I agree with Shery about the cold winds and snow. I live on a ranch on the Front Range of the Colorado Rockies. We just had one of the worst blizzards I have seen in the last 5-6 years. It started on the 1st day of spring and blew for a week. We raise bucking bulls for the PBR (Professional Bull Riders). We don’t start calving until about May because we can have snow until June! Last year we had snow from Halloween (2008) until June 3rd 2009 a whopping 8 months. I love the cold and hate the heat so I am right where I belong. A hot summer day for us is 80 degrees just the way I like it.

    Shery, not a single flower here yet. I ride out at false dawn to check the cattle and there are a few critters, but not much else. I live on the Arkansas River and I did see a juvenile black bear a few weeks back playing in the water, but he/she is gone now. I see lots of prong-horn sheep and elk, but they are headed for the high-country before the spring comes into full swing so that they can have their babies.

    I broke my back (2nd time with my beloved horses) rescuing a horse last summer so I also use my tractor a lot these days. It has a full cab so I now have AC in the summer and heat in the winter-life is good. Unfortunately, it can’t go where a horse does! The bulls can weigh 2000 pounds and have very bad attitudes and big horns so I need to stay safe. They are pretty sweet unless you corner them and then you have a fight on your hands.

    The down-side to where I live is we only have a short season for plants. We only have from about the beginning of June (last frost) and get our first frost in late August. So, my flower and vegetable gardens are short lived. I am in a high altitude. The people in town–about 25 miles away have a 4 month growing season. But, I LOVE where I live-you just have to like solitude and the fact I am 3 hours to a big mall with fancy stores. So, I go once every 6 months and shop for everything all at once. The internet is my friend! LOL!

    I love to read all the posts here on this site.


  19. Donna Kelso says:

    I had to laugh! I was currying my horse the other day, with lip balm on, and yes, I had very hairy lips!!! I live in Montana so can relate to all you say. Love hearing that someone else sees the world as I do.

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Eleventy-seven Years Later

To some, my most recent “glorious moment” may seem more like a molehill than a mountain, but for me, it was an overwhelming and joyous occasion.

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  1. Rene' says:

    Thanks for sharing that story! It gives me great inspiration to hold fast to my dream of some day owning my own little patch of farm ground where I can have a few horses of my own. Somehow I have faith that the day will come, I just pray that I am not too old to appreciate it when it happens. Thanks again, beautiful!

  2. Michele Hieb says:

    shery …I love the spring and all that comes with it…your baby colt is beautiful …can’t wait to meet her in person:)

  3. Debbie says:

    What a beautiful gift you gave yourself! I love your message…about holding on to "old" dreams…I guess some dreams have to float around out in the ether’s for a while before they come home to roost! 🙂
    I too have faith that one day my horses are out there waiting for me to arrive at just the right time for them! Did I mention that at least one of them is a Golden Palomino?

    Deb ( who hears bare-foot horse hooves in her dreams )

  4. Kathy says:

    What a pretty girl! And she looks to be so healthy and strong. Congratulations.

  5. Sheri,
    Your sharing is such a blessing.

  6. Cindy says:

    What a beautiful story! Thank-you!

  7. Vicki says:

    Congrats on your little miracle. She is beautiful.

  8. Reba says:

    You truly are blessed! And the heart of gratitude comes through in what you say; you said it so well!! Ribbon is absolutely beautiful. Thanks for reminding me to hold onto my dreams.

  9. Julie says:

    She is absolutely beautiful! Thank you for sharing your blessing with us. I love reading your blogs. You always inspire me so much!

  10. Susan says:

    I was so moved by your story. We are anxiously awaiting the birth of two Rocky Mountain foals due in April. My mare is bred to an outstanding black stallion named Dartanian. I’m hoping for a little black filly. The anticipation is killing me!!!! I pray all goes well. I pray for you during your training process. It appears you have really gotten what every horsewoman dreams of — a safe and remarkable riding companion.

  11. RanchFarmgirl says:

    Hi all you farmgirls, I just wanted to let YOU know how much YOU inspire ME. It is so thoughtful of you to take the time to leave comments and I love reading about YOUR lives. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for stopping by to visit and for your private emails also. Shery J

  12. Lorrie Gray says:

    I loved this story, I’m a Morgan horse owner too, and your horses are typey and gorgeous. Congratulations on your beautiful filly. I hope to find a gaited buckskin morgan – I understand your wish for color! Good blog – I always enjoy reading it.

  13. Jenn says:

    Shery, your writing makes me weep. I think all farmgirls have felt what you have so magnificently put to pen. Thanks for the inspiration!

  14. Karin says:

    Thank you for your beautiful message. What a beautiful gift. I really needed the encouragement. We bought a log home and 200 acres (nothing but timber and a few fields). My brother was guiding us into making it a place for us and hopefully in the future a place for children to come and experience organic farm life. He died two weeks ago at 54 and now I am lost. How and what and to do next? Thank you so much for your message.

  15. Shirley says:

    Good Day
    I just came in from going to look at a horse that I am considering purchasing…I am looking to buy my first horse at 51 years old. She is a Tennessee walker. I will be going back after lunch to ride her and see if we are a good match. Your story and testimony brought tears to my eyes and I just wanted to say thank you for sharing. God Bless you…I see He already has

  16. Deb says:

    This is the most wonderful story! Made my day. I was practically moved to tears – just goes to show that hard work and a dream are worth the wait – and wait – and wait. I do love Palamino, and Ribbon is a lover – that’s for sure!

    XO to my fellow WY cowgirl buddy!

  17. Bonnie Ellis says:

    Sherry, Dreams do come true because God is good. You also learned the beauty of EVERY horse in your care. They are ALL special. Happy Trails. Bonnie

  18. Mari Reyes says:

    Farm Girls, I love reading your comments. Sheri you are blessed, and to Shirley my sincere condolences for the loss of your brother. Hang in there! Good things will come. Marie

  19. Cora Jo says:

    Shery, That was beautiful and reminded me that dreaming "out of the box…or stall" is norm for us "farm" types…and needs to continue. She is a beaut for certain. Reminded me of my own Bluebell of many moons back. Thanks for taking time to introduce us all to Ribbon and to your faith in the unknown. You rock…as my granddaughter says.

  20. Carol McElroy says:

    Wonderful pictures! What a nice story, a wonderful message. Your horse is beautiful, and I loved the delivery pictures. Thank you for sharing these, Carol

  21. Christine Cronin says:

    This blog entry came at a perfect time for me. I just came home yesterday from a horsemanship retreat. I don’t own horses yet but it is a childhood dream I am working on fulfilling. The most amazing time for me came a few days ago during my first experience in the round pen. I did the "horse whispering thing" and when the horse looked at me with both eyes and then I turned and could hear his footsteps behind me I was nearly moved to tears. It was amazing! Thank you for your inspiring entries in this blog. I love every one of them.

  22. Debbie says:

    I just have to comment one more time here! So many wonderful words here from all the farmgirls! I too would like to extend my condolences to Shirley.

    And to Deb for inspiring me… I’m 48 and still waiting for my " dream ride".. I know he/she’s out there…all in good time…

    Cora Jo, you hit the nail on the head…We " farmgirls" do seem to dream out of the box!
    It IS just the norm isn’t it?

    To Shery, thanks for all your wonderful words here and for sharing so many of your wonderful and unique Ranch experiences !

  23. Becky says:

    What an amazing story! You will never know how much you helped me when I read that. I was all but ready to give up on a dream I have had and now I have a renewed faith and I am not going to give up. Thanks for the reminder that it is God’s timing for some things to happen.

  24. RanchFarmgirl says:

    Hi again from little ole me, I’m awed by all of your varied comments and so tickled that some of you took encouragement with you after reading it. I was deeply moved by Shirley’s note. Shirley, I hope your heart heals over time – I bet that finishing what you and your brother worked on together will help. He would be so proud of you for finding a way to follow your dream. I foresee a beautiful outcome…just follow a path of faith until you get there. Be comforted in the love your brother left behind for you and maybe gather strength from it. My heart goes out to you. Shery J

  25. Tracy says:

    Thank you for sharing this lovely story of almost lost dreams. The foal is amazingly beautiful!
    My dream for years, though almost forgotten, buried, let go…has been reborn. A log home! This dream is coming true in the midst of a 25 year marriage that my husband has decided to bring to an end. It is my earthly father who is making this possible, thus bringing my dream to life and my precious Heavenly Father, who has never left me nor forsaken me, that is whispering in my ear that I am loved.


  26. Meg says:

    What a special blessing from the Lord!

  27. Linda says:

    Thank you for the wonderful story. And congratulations on your girls. I just know she will be all you dreamed for and more. Our Father always outdoes our dreams. I am a former Morgan horse breeder and trainer. Where I live has turned into a resort town and all of the farms are being developed and the farmers leaving because they can’t afford the taxes. We had to let our farm go because it was on the ski mountain and the taxes were out of site. We leased a place for a while and I studied dressage and still trained horses. Now at age 65 and my husband 70, I don’t believe we will be starting over again. But I know I had the best – my dream horse was a dark horse with light mane and tail. I found it when I bought a 6 month old colt, the grandson of Jubilee King. He turned out to be a dark chestnut with a flaxen mane and tail and the best horse ever – more than I had dreamed for.

  28. Dear Shery,
    Love your blog! I too have a special place in my heart for a Palomino. When I was in high school, my father brought home a mare. We called her Golden Lady (Goldie). She was my 4-H project and after that raised some "color" from her. After saying goodbye to her so long ago, I feel God has given me another gift…a Palomino mare we call Promise. God knows our hearts…and He does bless. (Hebrews 11:6) For me, patience is such a hard part of life. Thanks for sharing. Your horses are beautiful!

  29. Vicki Borders says:

    Dear Shery,
    Today I read your blog for the lst time…I’m new to Mary Jane’s Farm, but not new to being and loving being a farmgirl. My very lst horse and the love of my life was Captain Fox, a government bred Morgan who lived to be 39 years old. I thought all horses were like Captain, until I owned a number of them through the years and loved them all, but never quite found one who measured up to dear Captain. Life happened and we had to be city/suburb folks for a number of years and I never thought I’d see life on a farm again. God was good though, and we had a great life, but then, suddenly, life happened again and we made a move, my husband made a job change and we ended up on a farm again! God outdid Himself this time, as it’s just such a special place…we call it Full Circle Farm, because we’ve come full circle in our lifestyle, and in so very many other amazing ways. Anyways, on the note of Captain….I began giving riding lessons here at Full Circle, and we have 11 horses, all of them oh, so special. There’s a mare, Sassy, who we acquired, and she was to be a school horse. She did well for awhile, but then began to balk and fuss and buck and I knew she’d not make a school horse. I pulled her from my program and began to work with her myself. She’s a buckskin and dappled and just so gorgeous, and…"sassy"! Little did I know that she would become "that horse"!! I would have never known it, had she not started acting up and letting me know she wanted to be a "mama’s girl" only. Now, we are so bonded, it’s not funny. I turned 57 this year, and God has given me this special girl with our special relationship…total trust in each other and knitted hearts…full circle, like the Captain and I once were. How merciful of our Lord to do this for me, after all these years! I love all of our horses, but He gave me a reason not to feel too guilty for keeping one out just for me! I’m going to love your blogs! Bless u and thanks so much!

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