Ranch Ramblings

We’ve officially closed out the summer dude ranch season, and the ranch has taken on a quiet mood this week.  Last week’s horsemanship clinic was wonderful.  We decided to rename it the Horsemanship retreat going forward, as it was more than just a clinic, and the quiet atmosphere of the ranch about to close down for the season gave it a retreat-like feel.  I received this great email from Jason after he returned home:

Subject: How to know vacation worked….

I got on the freeway this morning and needed to pass a car in front of me.  I shifted my hips in the seat, lifted my left leg slightly, and started to move my right leg in….when I tried to pizza box my hands over the steering wheel it occurred to me that the car wouldn’t pass like I wanted….

Many thanks to the team.  It’s always a good time.

Cheers, Jason

We also recently heard from a past guest who bought one of our mares, “Sally”, that she just won a dressage competition.  Way to go Wendy and Sally!  It’s pretty cool that we have horses that are quality enough to go from our dude ranch to the dressage arena.  It goes to show that a well put together horse with a good mind can go a lot of different directions.

Now it’s time to catch up on projects, the piles on our desks and to-do lists, as well as fit in a little time off.  Steve and Kelli are down in New Mexico camping and exploring.  The staff continue to trickle out of here, little goodbye notes left on the staff room white board one at a time.  And then there is a crew sticking around to help with chores and projects during the off season.  On Tuesday, we had a furniture moving party while there were still enough staff here to make it doable.   We cleared most of the furniture out of the Great room so we could be ready for Jo and Javin’s wedding here next month.  Hosting the wedding will put us all in the mindset of romantic winter vacations as we need to be ready for all the honeymooners coming this winter! Don’t worry, I’ve already had multiple requests for photos after the big day…we’ll share them!  I’m trying to avoid inhaling too many fumes from the Great Room today as Sarah and Melissa are in the middle of oiling the wood floor, taking  advantage of the room being empty.
The weather has been vacillating between gorgeous sunshine and snow and rain.  Today is a sunshine day, but cold this morning.  I took some photos the other day when it was snowing.  Although we’re not emotionally ready for the snow yet, it was beautiful.   I took a picture of these two aspens that day.  These trees are from Tyler and Johnny’s wedding here are the ranch years ago.  We planted them in their honor, and they remind me of the whole family every time I see them.  I took the pictures to send to them as it was just their anniversary.  Sadly, I just found out that Tyler’s step-dad Don just lost his heroic fight with cancer.  Don was an amazing person, a gentle and kind soul.  In the time I got to know him he was an inspiration for me with how he handled his disease and his love of life.  I will never forget a very memorable horseback ride we took together the last time he was here at the ranch.

Times like this make me realize how many memories this ranch holds for so many.  There have been so many people – guests and staff- who have come through the gates.  The countless life-long friendships, shared experiences, engagements and weddings, challenges and successes all make this ranch a rich place.