One of my favorite things about living on a ranch is you never know what the day will bring. I tend to find doing the same thing day after day to be tedious and boring, and I like my schedule to change. I love facing new challenges and finding solutions. Whether chasing rebel, escapee goats down the middle of the road, taking soil samples in preparation for our orchard, or experimenting with gluten and dairy free recipes in my kitchen, I have to be ready for whatever life throws at me.
There is one ritual I do each morning, rain or shine, school day or not. I have a big ol’ cuppa caffeine. Sometimes it’s tea, other times it’s coffee, but this mama savors each sip of liquid energy. I typically plan out my day while drinking my joe, at least the parts I can control!
Today I throw up my hair, grab jeans and a t-shirt, use a little mascara (being a natural blonde, I need all of the eyelash help I can get) and spray a little perfume (no one wants to smell like a farm animal) and I am out the door!
On this particular morning, the goats decided to escape from their temporary pen. There really is no such thing as a “temporary” pen for goats; they are far too mischievous, but you know what I mean! Our barn burned down in February, so they have had temporary lodging until we could create a new space for them. Although building a new place wasn’t in the plans until a few weeks from now, their escape made us realize it was time to establish a new home for Dolly, Dixie and Pepper the Pig!
It’s not the easiest to dig post holes in the late summer/early autumn with the soil in California. It’s rare to get rain here in the summertime so, our soil, a heavy clay, dries out and is like concrete. The only break from this is during our late autumn/early spring “rainy season”. Regardless, the post holes weren’t going to dig themselves and the job had to get done. A little concrete in the holes to set the posts, and “Voila” the fence goes up and our buddies have a new home!
Animals are clearly a huge part of our life at Wildflowers Ranch. We have 2 goats, a pig, 9 chickens, 2 dogs and we share 2 horses with my Dad. Spending time with them brings my heart peace; they just simply make me happy. As often as possible, I try to sneak away and spend a little time with them. Since the new fence was done for the goats and pig, I treated myself to a ride with Odin.
Odin is just a love, so easy to hang with and he enjoys an easy ride just as much as I do. We wanted to raise our daughters around “bomb-proof” horses, and Odin has been such a fabulous horse for the girls. We feel so blessed having him around.
Out of all of the animals on our ranch, Lumen is my right-hand girl. There is definitely a reason Labrador Retrievers are America’s favorite dog. I love dogs and was blessed to own a wide variety of pups throughout my life. However, I will say Labs are one of my all-time favorite breeds. Lumen runs along-side me everywhere on the ranch, accompanying me in all of my daily chores. Having my buddy by my side makes the day seem to pass a slower and more care-free. Today was no different, and one of the great joys in my life is to spend time with and play with my pup.
After Lumen and I are done with our evening chores, it is time to start dinner! Dinnertime is always a little bit of work around our house. I am on a restricted diet due to food sensitivities and allergies, so I have to cook most everything we eat from scratch. This really limits eating out and grabbing something quick for dinner. This was a pretty difficult switch at first, but now I actually look forward to creating healthy food from scratch each night.
Each night, our family sits at the dinner table to share a meal together. My husband often has to work evenings, but I still make sure the girls and I enjoy our supper as a family. This has been an evening tradition since I was a little girl. Dinner is an important part of the day and was always reserved for us to talk through ideas or concerns happening in our lives. More often than not it led to us laughing with each other. It brought us together and, I believe, created an important family bond. This tradition is honored each night in my home and in raising our girls as I value and am grateful for our precious time together as a family. We know that no matter what happens to us individually, we are here to support each other.
When dinner is over, I turn on the tunes and we get our groove on! It’s my favorite way to have some fun with the girls while they help clear the table and I wash the dishes. The nightly routine continues with giving the girls a bath, reading books, and tucking them into bed! Once the girls are in bed, this tired mama has a little FREEDOM! I love sitting and relaxing in the evenings on our front porch swing. On occasion, this includes enjoying a glass of wine or cocktail. Today, was such a day, as my husband and I built a fence. It only seemed right to have a little moonshine!
Being the lightweight “cheap date” that I am, give me 30 minutes after having moonshine and I will be asleep. Especially on days of fencing!
As I’ve said, life on a ranch can throw you curves.Tomorrow we might spend hours working in the garden due to our massive tomato harvest (HELLO spaghetti sauce!), or whipping up a large batch of homemade apricot jam. Or you know, our well might spring a leak and we will be out playing in the mud to fix it! No matter what comes our way, I am truly grateful each day to be able to live this life on this ranch with my family, fur babies, escapee goats and all!
This post was sponsored by BootDaddy, the Exclusive Line of PFI Western. We are so grateful for our sponsors.