We're halfway through our time here at the ranch. Time has flown! Some days are much better than others, but on the whole this has been the best thing we could have done - for us as individuals, for our marriage, for our dog, and for our financial situation.
Things that I have learned are varied (and I mean WAAAAAAAY varied), but here are some of my favorites:
-Fresh Sweet Peas off the the vine are one of the most delicious things around. And you have to understand, I hate Peas. I have ALWAYS hated peas - frozen, from a can, whatever - the texture makes me gag (just like beans). But fresh? Straight off the vine? Absolutely delicious. To quote one of my favorite movies, JULIE AND JULIA, they are "A revelation". (We're watching it right now!)
-When your five star chef gets really excited about how good the carrots you grew in the greenhouse, it's quite a compliment and a sign that you're doing something right.
-Life gluten free can be very exciting. Especially with a chef to cook for you. But gluten free pizza - even a good dough and a pizza cooked in a wood fired pizza oven - is still never as good as the gluten-full pizza of your dreams. It does suffice, though!
-Doing five hours of dishes in a day can turn me into the devil's female cousin. With horns.
-Putting flowers out in a windstorm is preferable to leaving them in a greenhouse where they may get eaten by aphids.
-I hate Aphids. Last week was the Great Aphid War of 2011. I am tentatively (not decisively) declaring victory. :)
-Chipmunks like to eat beets. Who knew? I'm still trying to catch the chipmunk alive. He gets a few more days and then the mousetraps are coming out and it's Sayonara, Chunky.
-Sometimes, something as simple as giving yourself a pedicure and making your husband rub your feet to complete the experience can make you feel like a different person.
-Rodeos are fun. :) The boss buys a whole bench for the four days of the Cody Stampede each year. Last night, they gave the tickets to the staff and we went in to town, had greasy burgers (bunless for me) and went to the rodeo. It was awesome. (The Cody Stampede is regarded as the best PRCA - Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association - Rodeo in the United States every year.)
-Indy's still an escape artist and can't be trusted off leash. He spent today with his leash tied to the Rope Swing at the pond while Jason worked on the windmill. After his adventure in the Steer Pen and nearly getting killed trying to herd the steer, he's leash-bound indefinitely.
-14 year old boys in a golf cart will make you crazy.
-Looking forward to visits with family can make all the difference in your mood! Tomorrow we meet Jason's brother Rob and his girlfriend Kate in Yellowstone, where we will camp for the night and hike on the 4th. This coming Friday, my parents will arrive and stay on the ranch for a few days. The week after, Kelli and Jeff fly in to stay with my parents in West Yellowstone and we get to spend some time with them. It's a family filled few weeks!!!!!! I can't wait!
-I'm starting to feel my creative juices flowing again. I've agreed to help Heidi with her rhythmic abilities (i.e. learning the dances on her Dancing with the Stars exercise DVD) and to teach a few of the guests to line dance. That's a step (hardy-har) in the right direction, I'd say!
-The best ice cream in the world is made right here on the ranch by our chef - Salted Caramel. It's like ice cream crack and is literally the best ice cream I've ever had. It's "lick the ice cream container so no drop gets wasted" good. You should be jealous. It's a good thing I'm going to be dancing with Heidi.
-And last, but certainly not least, my husband rocks in so many ways. :)
Here's to July and sunny, warm weather here in Wyoming. Hope your new month is beautiful, relaxing and rewarding!