there is nothing wrong with this picture!

My father-in-law use to come home from the office in an expensive suit and commence gardening….yes, his towering 6’5″ frame cut short as he balances on his hands and knees pulling weeds, or planting flowers; whatever he happened to notice required immediate! attention before he was safely inside the house.  Not surprisingly, his ever patient wife, my mother-in-law, would express mild irritation for the transgression;)  Those of us who were lucky enough to witness these acts of reckless abandon would laugh because it seemed so preposterous that one would not take a moment to change out of your good clothes….

I wish that I had a picture of Dan Murphy, but I found this picture posted on a great blog!  Check out  only after you have read mine😉

Well, I hate to admit that I am following in this grand dames strappy footsteps as well as my father-in-laws giant gaping stride ….the scene of my crime would be my horse barn and  I can be found in various forms of dress doing chores.  I have been seen to be providing morning feed in my pajamas, but assuredly, the afternoon routine would seem to offer the most enjoyment for the casual observer.  The “secret video footage”  might include a bikini, silk pajamas and bathrobe(hey, if I have had a big day of migraines I am allowed to wear pajamas all day!), or like today, a nice dress.  All or any options would not be complete without my rubber boots!  I wouldn’t think of getting my good shoes mucked up, I have standards you know.

While some might think this behaviour somewhat peculiar when looking at the following picture,…I  think that if you look closer, give it more thought, you might agree with me that the only thing wrong with this picture is that I need nicer boots to wear in the barn!  Just sayin’  Long live our eccentricities!

Finding your centre, without being self-centred

I am constantly amazed that our bodies give us physical signs that we are out of sync.  This summer has been very busy, and in a different way than any other year.  Now settling into our life on Summerhill, I am participating in activities like unloading straw into the hay mow, pulling obscene amounts of weeds out of the garden, again and again! and my favorite; cleaning horse stalls each morning, then bedding at night.

Two weeks ago I started having low back pain, which I rarely get; and if I do it’s because I am moving furniture around by myself;).  I ignored the pain and kept pushing ahead.   Then I was getting the ever delightful back spasms.  Still being a bit daft, since “I don’t get back pain”, I continued to ignore it.  When I could barely get out of bed one day, I decided, hey, maybe its time to listen.  Fine, a little stretch here and there should do it.  Uhm…no.  I gave in to the discomfort with a small gesture of morning and evening stretches.  Still no go.  Pain getting worse.

I finally took a moment as I iced my back, to take stock of my life and find out if I created the pain through a one time event or if I was systematically ignoring the need to be balanced in my activities.
Not surprisingly, it was the second.  I found that just because I could do work on the farm, it didn’t mean that I had to do it all at once.  I suddenly realized that the less I took care of myself, the less I was enjoying all the other activities in my day.

It is difficult sometimes to put yourself first.  It seems counter-intuitive to make sure that your own needs are met before your family.  However, if we take the time each day, even in a small way,  to take care of ourselves then we invariably are happier and healthier.  When we were busy raising Emily and had many work and social commitments, my “me” time was always a 15 min. bath before I started dinner.  It gave me a pause, and there I re-centered.

My back issues served as a reminder to take care.  Being centered is not only a more pleasant and meaningful way to move about the day, but it becomes a silent gift to everyone you come across.