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Ride Away With Me

Yeah so, I wandered in all casual like last night and spent some time  browisng today. Yes, I have been gone for a couple years. No, I am not going to squander time with a long and dull reintroduction. I'm just going to pretend I've been here all along and do a survey.

What did you do in 2013 that you'd never done before?
Linedance! Well, that might be stretching it a little. I tried line-dancing.

Did you keep your New Year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don't think I made any. I'm a very unresolved sort of person.

Did anyone close to you give birth?
Me! For one. And two or three other people.

Did anyone close to you die?
Jeremy's grandmother.

What countries did you visit?
None. Wah. the sadness.

What would you like to have in 2014 that you lacked in 2013?
The Internetz.

What date from 2013 will remain etched upon your memory?
Jan. 26th, 2013. Sophia's birthday.

What was your biggest achievement of the year?What was your biggest failure?
I would like to say my biggest achievement of the year was line-dancing, but since I have barely managed to learn one dance this would be a fabrication. My biggest achievement therefore, was clearly- KEFIR! :-D

My biggest failure? Oh, dear. Let's not speak of such things. Besides, failure is a very final word. Nothing is final till you're dead. I'm not dead. Ergo, technically I've never failed at anything. I just haven't done it successfully yet. So there.

Did you suffer illness or injury?
Not much. I'm sure it was the kefir.

What was the best thing you bought?
KEFIR! Ok, actually I didn't buy kefir. If you hang out with the right company you never have to buy your own kefir. What did I buy? I usually only buy the necessities like books and food. Ooh, I bought the old version of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty because after years and years of waiting for it to NOT be $50, it came back in circulation because of the remake and I was Happy Forever.

Whose behavior merited celebration?
Jeremy's. For teaching me to Talk About Things instead of letting them slowly kill you, and others.

Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed? Where did most of your money go?
First question there- Sorry, not biting. Second question- I just told you. Books and food. ;-)

Compared to this time last year, are you
i. happier or sadder?:
I wasn't sad last year, this question confuses me. Besides, I'm a Cynic. This means I'm never enthusiastically happy, but I'm always comfortable and content.
ii. thinner or fatter? Oh dear, the latter. What an insensitive question.
iii. richer or poorer? Poorer, I suppose. If one thinks of it.  But it is just money.

What do you wish you'd done more of?
Exercise. Yeppers.

What do you wish you'd done less of?

Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
This is a truly funny question. Are there seriously people who have Names of People They Hate? I don't hate people. I disagree with them frequently, but hating them is against my religion. Soooooooooooooo there. Bahaha.

What was the best book you read?
Oh dear, this is a very tough one. Randomly going with Certain Women, by Madeline L'Engle. (You're at a crossroads. One road leads to a wedding, the other to a funeral. Choose the wedding.)

What did you want and get?
Fuzzy socks. Firefly on dvd. Another day, after day, after day, of blessings.

What did you want and not get?
I don't know. I don't remember being deeply disappointed about anything.

What was your favorite film of this year?
I have seen an embarrassingly small number of new movies this year. I'm going to say Red 2 (and it was pretty funny), but you must remember that this is out of a list of about, say, three  theater movies total.

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 29 on my birthday, Dec. 20'th. I had coffee and chinese food.

What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
If I could have managed to learn to line-dance. Alas. Two left feet, I curse you.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2012?
The Harried Housewife Wears Yoga

What/who kept you sane?
1. Humour.
2. God's timing. (Which is actually often pretty humerous.)

What political issue stirred you the most?
I am an embarrassingly apolitical person. I am passionate about the right to life and abortion, but I consider that to be far more of a moral and ethical issue than it is simply a political issue.

Who did you miss?
My sexy, hot, organized and super awesome alter-ego. She bails on me sometimes, just when I need her the most.

Who was the best new person you met?
Valerie W, I think.

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2013.
TALK about Things. Communicate. Even (and especially) the hard things.

P.S I'm posting from my mother-in-law's laptop and from her Internetz, where we're staying for the holidays. Not certain yet if this brief foray into LJ-Land portends anything of further significance.

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Who's there?


Equuschick Who?
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If you have a son/s,  did you circumcise?

Why or why not? Please leave a comment with your choice and why you made it.

On a final obligatory note, I'm asking for my own curious reasons and I have no desire to spark controversy, so if someone leaves a comment that you disagree with or think is inaccurate, be nice.  If two parties agree to a healthy debate, fabulous.  But be civilized, my dears.

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Are You a Betting Man?Collapse )


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My friend Alicia's 4 year old brother had another seizure this evening and they had to take him away in an ambulance, I'm waiting for the updated phone call.  She was crying when she called the first time.

Thanks everyone for your prayers, Alicia called and updated. At this point Aaron is doing fine, he is worn out but is at least responding. They're going to keep him overnight and do an MRI tomorrow.

When it happened the 16 year old Alex was at home alone with him, and it had been so long since he'd had a seizure that poor Alex couldn't remember how to give the medicine and panicked, which is why the seizure was so long. The paramedics couldn't even get him out of it when they first arrived.

But he is fine for now, I'll let  you know when we hear more.
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** Surgery lasted 8 hours instead of the expected 2-3.

** It's her left leg and right arm that are broken (she's right handed). The breaks were substantial and they had to put pins in some bones.

** Recovery: No weight on either limb for six weeks. No word yet on how long she'll have to be in the hospital.

** She's in a lot of pain, but very good spirits. Her family is stressed over seeing her in this much pain, but so thankful that she is OK. Things could have been so much worse.

Thanks for your prayers!
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We got a call tonight that a dear friend of ours from WA state was hit by a car today, at this point her head and internal organs appear to be fine but she has multiple breaks and fractures on her legs and arms and is in surgery right now.

She's the oldest of seven kids in a very loving family, and she's one of my sister Rebecca's dearest friends.
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If I'm out with them, Sky has taken to runnng up to me every time he's being bothered by a horse fly. He is learning to stand still too, because, as I keep trying so patiently to explain to him, how can I get a fly off his back if he's doing the Charleston? 

This morning I watched in some surprise as Paca, my very selfish older horse, took the trouble three or four times in a row to drive the goats away from Strawberry's hay, and then he would go back to his own meal.  He is a 26 year old cranky gelding and yet he still seems to feel a moral obligation to protect his little girlfriend.

Speaking of horses, I should probably head out as I have a lesson coming this morning.

(I also just had what I thought was a grand, if probably unrealistic, idea I need to e-mail

eattheolivesabout. Remind me, Marie.)


Current Mood: calm calm

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"Minding Animals"

This being the title of a book by Marc Bekoff that caught The Equuschick's eye at the library, cute polar bears being on the cover and everything. And the title caught her fancy, as it is a great philosophy of The Equuschick's that to simply watch an animal with fully absorbed attention, "to mind" an animal, if you will, is an unappreciated and underpracticed activity with rewards of education, experience, and understanding far beyond expectation.

She did not originally intend to check it out however, but only to browse the pages while she waited for her sister to get off work. The Equuschick is fond of animals and believes their intelligence and awareness of what goes on around them to be vastly underestimated, but she is suspicious of the sort of book with a forward by Jane Goodall and reviews on the back proclaiming evolutionary dogma.

But being the sort of person she is, The Equuschick started the introduction and got so interested she pulled out paper and pen started taking the sort of notes The Equuschick takes. These vary from the challenging and probing (because writing her own challenges down argumentatively and responding in kind is the only way she can come to a conclusion on anything) or approving and thoughtful, or sarcastically disdainful when she encounters the Just Plain Silly.

For instance, Jane Goodall provided this little gem, referring to the hunting habits of the Indian tribes of North America, which she seems to approve of.
..."They referred to them as Brothers and Sisters." (They being the animals, of course.) "They hunted for food, but they offered up a prayer of thanks to an animal they had killed. The animals lived wild and free before their death."

The Equuschick, not knowing where to start, has bullet pointed her thoughts.

*In two sentences Jane, you have equated animals with human family members and made known your approval for the hunting, killing, and eating of a brother or sister, provided that after they're dead you say thank-you politely. How bizarre.

*"Wild and free" is, and always has been, Loopy Liberalese for "Half-starved, diseased, and inbred, probably injured, and definitely exposed to the elements in all kinds of weather." How very humane.

The Equuschick is compelled to note that here Jane Goodall probably had in mind the confined and unsanitary conditions that some (but not all) large-scale farmers provide for the animals raised for food. Let us not forget that there is a happy medium to be found between "Wild and Free" and "Confined to a pen so small they cannot move and have to stand in their own waste." But, The Equuschick repeats, she recognizes exceptions and she means no disrespect to any farmers.

But Jane Goodall's rare gems of utter nonsense came after a sentence which caught The Equuschick's true attention.

"As he (the author) observes different animal species-and he has had firsthand experience with many- Marc is continually asking himself: what would it BE like to be this coyote, this wolf, this dog?"

And The Equuschick must confess, she has done this herself. She does it every day, and she asks herself this question deliberately and passionately, with great interest. She goes to aquariums and sits down and watches the dolphins, and there are things she wants to know. What is it like to live in a dolphin's world? What is it like to be a dolphin? What do they experience, how much do they understand, and how do they learn to understand it?

It sounds rather silly admittedly, but The Equuschick could spend a happy half-hour in front of a goldfish bowl "minding" the goldfish. What does a goldfish see? How do they see it? In what colours? She wants to KNOW.

When she trains her horse, her dog, her goal always is to see things from their own point of view. You cannot train an animal when you do not see their point of view, and it is impossible to train an animal if you do not even acknowledge that they have one.

And that, you see, is the crux of the issue, and why The Equuschick feels that "minding" an animal is more than just an activity for animal lovers. To learn to mind an animal, you must learn to see things from another point of view. You must admit that such a thing exists. You must step outside yourself and admit the possibility that there could be another opinion. You must take yourself outside of self (always a good character exercise) and ask "What if I wasn't me, and I was the dog instead?"
And it may sound silly, and in some cases, the answer itself may be irrelevant. (It doesn't matter that the dog doesn't like his medicine, he must take it.) But the answer has never been the issue, the important thing is to learn to ask the question.

It is true that science can never empirically prove the range of intelligence, emotion, or awareness of any animal, but it is also true that it has never been proved, or can ever be proved, that they don't have any at all. The intelligence, emotions, opinions, or awareness or lack thereof, of any animal has never been within the range of empirical science.

To be frank with the readers, neither has the intelligence or emotion of my severely retarded sister. Yet no one who has spent an an hour "minding" Angel, with a mind all ready open to the possibility of a point of view without a voice, can doubt that she loves and laughs with the best of them.

If you believe that the only points of view that exist are those spoken in your own tongue, you are a very small-minded person indeed. Step outside yourself please, and meet the world.

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Tuesday- Anthony and Alicia arrived here at 5:30 pm amid much euphoria. Anthony and Alicia are the oldest W. children whom the children in my family practically grew up with, I don't remember a time where I didn't know Alicia and Anthony pointed out he's known Nicole and I longer than he's known his own 18 year old sister. Twenty years.
They are, in short, our Second Family. And now they live in CO and we live here and life is sad and lonely, but at least two of them are here now until Sunday.

Tuesday night Alicia and I stayed up till 3:40 am discussing life and family and our hopes and dreams and fears, and we think 3:40 am is a very reasonable hour indeed, considering how much there was to catch up on.

Last night the whole mob of us were up till 1:45 am playing Rage and at 1:30 I was overcome by a craving for fried eggs, so I fried two eggs and then put the frying pan in the sink with some soap, which made Anthony mad because he'd wanted fried eggs too. But I washed the pan and set it on the stove and we shall have fried eggs for breakfast.

The girls all went upstairs to get ready to crash and in the general spirit of things, I began to run through my version of Clark Gable's "Perhaps you're interested in how a guy undresses" which is called "Perhaps you're interested in how Kristin undresses" and then I paused to answer a call of nature and the bathroom door was thrown open and a glass of cold water was flung on me. And I recovered my dignity in a rage and found Nicole literally rolling on the floor in hysteria. And poor Anthony came upstairs in concern to see if everything was okay because he'd heard screaming, only to be told incoherently to "Go AWAY."

Life is good. Other life updates later.

Current Mood: bouncy bouncy

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