Sunday Stills

Happy Birthday, Don. xxoo

This week’s Sunday Stills challenge was to photograph things that start with the letter “S”, so I figured it was as good a time as any to face one of my biggest fears… spiders.

Being as how I can barely stand to look at pictures of spiders, this was not easy for me. The easy part was finding one to photograph!

This flag is being carried on horseback by a member of the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Posse at the New Mexico State Fair rodeo.

Did you know?

Much of modern-day rodeo evolved from the working cowboy and his duties on the range. After months of moving cattle across the country, cowboys celebrated the end of their grind by roping more cattle and riding wild broncs for fun and friendly competition. It was from those informal, friendly competitions that on July 4, 1869, two groups of cowboys met to settle an argument over who was best at performing everyday ranch duties. This first competition was how the sport of rodeo evolved.


This cinch buckle is pretty significant for me this week.

I took my first riding lesson – EVER in my whole life! – yesterday. SO amazing. I felt like I really and truly rode a horse for the first time.

It wasn’t at all like my previous experiences, which for the most part, have been on horses that simply followed the rear end of the horse in front of them. Even if I had fun pretending I was,  I know I was never the one in control on any of those horses.

My horse yesterday was Miracle Foxy Czar, a.k.a. Foxy; an Egyptian Arabian. Gorgeous. Gentle. Smart. Responsive. Who knew? Foxy responded to my legs, my posture, my balance. I hardly had to use the reins. Who knew a horse could respond to every single – even minute – change in me and what I was doing?

Linda, my instructor, must have thought I was maniacal. She kept showing me things, and I think I kept saying, “This is so cool!”  And, “Oh my gosh!”  And, “This is amazing!”  I mean, seriously? How cool was it that all I had to do was lean forward a bit and Foxy’s pace picked up in response? How cool was it that all I had to do was push one leg or the other into him and he’d move for me? How cool was it that my balance determined whether he went left or right?

I told Don I felt as if I had been plugged into Foxy. A whole new world opened up for me… I never knew horses could read a person like Foxy read me.  And it felt so good. So amazing! So real!

Here’s Foxy. Did I mention he’s gorgeous?

I can barely wait for our next lesson. ♥

There’s lots of excitement in New Mexico right now. It’s green chile harvest time.

Everywhere we go for the next few weeks, sacks of green chile will abound.

And we’ll see and smell it being roasted. The smell of green chile roasting is a beautiful thing. It makes you feel alive!

Yesterday was the first time we bought a sack of our own and had it roasted.

30 pounds of freshly picked green chiles were put into the chile roaster…

The fire was turned on…

…and the drum turned the green chiles over the fire for about four minutes. Then the chiles were rinsed…

…which created steam… sorry, no smoke for the challenge…

…and the end result of beautifully roasted green chiles.

Life is good. ♥