As I paused to take a photo at about the crest of the hill leading away from the ranch to the highway, I briefly admired the morning sky of clouds highlighted by glowing pink, yellow and blue tones.
But I didn’t stop to document nature’s beauty. I took the photo so I could text it to my husband to let him know these calves were out! Another day, I would have just put them back in, and I thought about it for a moment knowing it should be a five minute chore. Then thought better of it as I was on a tight schedule and both Rancher and Pop were home and could easily shoot up the hill to do it. I did not budget extra time for having to change clothes after (as my mind pictured while I considered my next move) snagging my cream colored sweater (a rare choice for me these days, so the likely cause of the errant calves, and probably some kid messes. Wait for it, the day is young!) on the fence post or wire or getting my town boots and pant legs damp in the ditch if the mini-on-foot round-up came to that. And while I wasn’t so jazzed about getting to town where I could bet on an RB meltdown at his once-weekly daycare drop off, that is really enough solo wrangling for a Wednesday.
RB yells at the calves “go to your mom!” as we take off and does a good job pointing out the bajillion deer we pass on the way to the highway. His angst about going to town to “schoo” to “see kids” dissipates for the remainder of the hourish ride as he points out real deer, fictional “baby coyotes” and other people’s farm equipment and cattle, eventually zonking out the last 20 miles. It returns as soon as we pull into the drop-off zone. I make my mind picture the beautiful sky and the cute, if mischievous calves and call up the thankful heart I filled as I took time to appreciate our life on the ranch during the drive. The weekly daycare drop-off drama is all part of the equation, and I figure penance for all the awesome we get to enjoy as we spend a good 3/4 of our time together at home by virtue of raising beef on the ranch. In this challenging five minutes while I carry RB, the baby carrier with RBII, and a bag full of their provisions like an indentured Sherpa, I mentally fast-forward to what will be probably be the best part of the day: pick up time. I’ll pick up a happy, smiling RB who is excited to talk about his fun day, yet also ready to get home to “the Bar-Zoo House”. Where he came up with this, we don’t know. We don’t have other homes/houses, he just likes to be descriptive I guess.
I hope your Wednesday is filled with equivalents of the escapee calves and drop off meltdowns that make this life the salty-sweet it is supposed to be! And yes, in case you are wondering, I do treat myself to a piping-hot, made just for me latte when I have the drop off drams behind me. This is probably why I can wax all sentimental about it. And I’m not mad.