Summertime…Oh Sweet Summertime…..

Summertime…oh sweet summertime! How I love thee, let me count the ways.

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My number one love of summer is being outside and enjoying the season. Every evening we are on the patio watching the colors change…drinking in the beautiful summer nights…breathing in the country air while making new memories to add to the days of old.

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I love summertime and all that comes with it, hot temps, harvest, dust, lemonade, flowers, and always horses…mix it all together and you have a perfect summer!

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Ms. Melody is enjoying the evening out on her pasture for a few hours…I love seeing our horses free and grazing the pasture in their natural state. My Dad had over 25 horses on the cattle ranch that I grew up on…they were working horses as by the week’s end we had each ridden several of them gathering cattle, traveling over 20 to 30 miles in mountainous country so we did not have to worry so much about grass…I worry about my horses today as they do not get the same use and exercise…with horses you always have to be thinking about their health and keeping them safe. We check them everyday making sure all is well…

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There is so much natural beauty outside during summertime…but honestly, each season has its own beauty and I enjoy them all!

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Beginning with spring, we often have puffy clouds drifting lazily overhead casting shadows on the landscape, while a sapphire blue sky peaks out…click goes my camera!

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A summer blessing appeared this year as Dad’s trees are blooming once again:) A few years ago during a record drought, they were dying from lack of rain, while this year they bloomed, bringing back the wonderful sweet smell of the blossoms…they smell absolutely heavenly!

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They have become a part of the ranch and have been a constant in my life since I was small…Dad planted them on top of the hill gradually bringing them down to the end of the arena where I practiced barrels and pole bending…and where my Dad would stand patiently timing me and saying “Come on go, hurry, go go go…yah you did it!”

Marcy and Red Doing Barrels

Dad used to team rope and calf rope when I was smaller and I would run the 12 and under barrel races at whatever small rodeo we went to. Mom was long suffering as she was our cheerleader and support! When Dad built the arena, he built it for roping, it was set up and ready to go for calf roping and team roping with friends. Dad’s trees have stood silently by through years of both good and bad times, having weathered life well…while passing the test of time this year, with a re-birthing of new life in their branches:)

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Β Ellie girl is loving summer too as this is her first grown up summer and she is ready for new adventures “Come on Mom, lets go”…she loves exploring on our walks as I look for new photos to capture…she looks for new places to dig holes and explore.

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She gave me a perfect Ellie shot…she is so cute how she always has her head down and bottom up when exploring…I love my Ellie girl:)

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The last few years we have had odd weather…it has been great for me to capture pictures as I love the ever changing weather for photo ops. In this shot, can you see the eyes or the Zorro mask?

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Ominous storm clouds rolling into the canyon, drifting over us…

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No make that scary clouds! Hang on Toto as we must be in Kansas!

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After the storms, we usually have an awesome rainbow…I love trying to capture the colors as they are full of natural beauty. Our God is an amazing God…He gives us a beautiful world to live in filled with miraculous scenes if we look for them!

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And then there is Minnie…our 19 year-old kitty who is exploring summertime green grass…she loves summer too and will sit in the window day and night sleeping against the screen so she can smell the smells, hear the sounds and feel the cool air. This summer I have taken her outside each evening that we are outside so that she can taste the grass, taste the air and breathe deeply all the smells that kitties love.

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After 19 years as an inside kitty, she has earned the time to explore the yard…smell the smells and feel the grass under her paws:) I stay close to her and watch over her…once we go back into the house, she sleeps like a very happy and contented kitty girl:) She is precious and all heart, as she lost her vision and hearing a few months ago…yet she is determined to live her life as fully as she always has!

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“Mom…what is Minnie doing outside and she’s eating the grass!”

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“Mom, tell Tucker to mind her own business…this grass is darn good!”

DSC04398“Grass…where?”

SONY DSCAs the day slowly fades and sunshine turns into twilight, intense colors appear painting the sky above with a jaw dropping sundown as the

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Surreal light of “magic time” transforms the sky and the landscape with an array of softer, yet vivid, ethereal colors, creating a feel good afterglow…and a peaceful night.

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“Mom…seriously, where is the grass? “

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To be continued…with a grass-eating kitty and a few horses who wonder where that grass is!

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“Did she say grass?”

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I’m back after taking some time off…I have missed you all! Thank you for your support and encouragement on this road called photography, writing the story and blogging!

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Have A Happy Brand New Week!

39 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Marilyn Armstrong
    Jul 28, 2014 @ 17:03:21

    Your everything is incredibly lovely … but your skies are amazing. The hugeness of that sky, the cloud formations. Extraordinary. I do love the summer and this one has been pretty much perfect. Our reward for surviving winter?

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Jul 28, 2014 @ 21:26:30

      Hi there:) It is good to hear from you! Thank you much…I have missed you and I hope your health is good as new:) Yes the skies here are huge…I think they are huge due to lack of towns or civilization near by….I do love capturing the clouds and always the sky…they are fascinating to me. Yes summer for us has been good but I worry it is going too fast…I am not ready yet for fall…but of course I will love fall too….but summer needs to be longer:) Can it be June again? I think you are right with our reward…winters seem so long and so cold! Wishing you a perfecto month of summer ahead….Hugs from HRCG

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      • Marilyn Armstrong
        Jul 28, 2014 @ 21:41:18

        Summer definitely needs to be longer. Autumn too. I’ve always thought fall is way too short. I could do June again. Maybe twice more.

        I’m doing okay. Getting there. I don’t know about good as new, but better than I was anyhow. Thanks for caring πŸ™‚

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      • Hot Rod Cowgirl
        Jul 28, 2014 @ 21:52:08

        Yes I agree with a longer fall and doing June again twice…it is so nice to have warm temps and not be cold! I am hot now but would rather be hot than cold!! I love this time of year as the world feels better….more positive and happy…and that is me too:) I am so glad to hear you are doing okay…I have been praying that your body would heal and that you would feel much better! I am thankful for knowing you and I feel blessed to call you my friend:)

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      • Marilyn Armstrong
        Jul 28, 2014 @ 22:13:09

        πŸ™‚

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      • Hot Rod Cowgirl
        Jul 28, 2014 @ 22:18:32

        Ditto:) Have a blessed night:)

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  2. SwittersB
    Jul 28, 2014 @ 23:21:24

    Wonderful images and story. I so love the clouds!

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Jul 29, 2014 @ 08:51:31

      Thank you! I love the clouds too as the skies here are huge and the clouds are free to morph into anything….hoping I do not see a funnel! I also love the various colors of the sky…takes my breath away sometimes!

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  3. emjayandthem
    Jul 29, 2014 @ 04:12:50

    Your posts radiate joy! Thank you for the sweet summertime update πŸ™‚
    MJ

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  4. bentehaarstad
    Jul 29, 2014 @ 05:47:22

    Happy, happy summer, Cowgirl!

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  5. onespoiledcat
    Jul 29, 2014 @ 06:49:10

    Hi there cowgirl! Long time no see….but it was worth the wait as these are gorgeous as always photos……..Beautiful skies and endless views…..we’re sad to hear about Minnie losing her sight and sound – bless her – 19 and she looks like a youngster. I say she’s earned the right to feel that sweet green grass under her paws and have a bite or two…..Sam loves wet morning grass……we send all of you hugs and a hearty welcome back…….

    Love, Pam (and Sammy)

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Jul 29, 2014 @ 09:19:35

      Hi there Pam and Sammy:) It is good to hear from you, I missed you two! Thank you so much for your kind words and support of my photography. I love capturing shots of life around me to share…it feeds my heart and spirit to shoot images…I love it! Love writing too. I was beside myself when we realized Minnie lost her vision and her hearing! Last spring Minnie took a nap and woke up with a tiny bit of blood in one of her eyes…I figured it was a blood vessel. Minnie continued to play, eat and drink so she was feeling good…her vet now thinks she had a mini stroke? Minnie is her oldest client…she marvels at her age as her blood tests will come back and look like it was an 8 year old kitty instead of 19. She is healthy…my vet told me that many cats go blind and learn to compensate. They live full lives and do well. I carry her around the house to her food and water bowls…she sometimes gets lost and I hear an almost meow scream which sends me running to her…she can smell and sense you are near to her. Thats why we decided it was time for exploring the outdoors and the grass…she has earned that and as long as I can see her I am fine. Our kitty angels are incredible and so full of love…give Sammy a rub on his head for us and a belly scratch:) Minnie loves them both! Sending hugs to you and happy Tuesday wishes:) HRCG

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  6. singleworkingmomswm
    Jul 29, 2014 @ 13:28:28

    Lovely post and pics! Glad you are back! πŸ™‚ XOXO-Kasey

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  7. Nylabluesmum
    Jul 30, 2014 @ 19:54:50

    What a light & refreshing & happy blog HRCG!! Your photos as usual tell so much of the story of your life!
    I love the Ellie pix; that cute tushie in the air is priceless!
    I did see the Zorroo mask in the clouds; how cool. Your FAther’s trees look amazing & I think I smelled them from here….
    Bless Minnie’s heart! You cannot tell from the pix she is blind; she looks so normal…can I use that word? I am so glad you take her out nightly & she can explore.
    Nylablue is missing the feel of grass under her paws now. WE are not allowed to be on it anymore,,,..
    She has walked on the new concrete patio & she sure did not like it much πŸ˜‰
    However we are glad we have a patio & can enjoy it for the rest of the Summer..
    Wishing you a wonderful August..
    Sherri-Ellen & Nylablue x0x0x0

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Aug 05, 2014 @ 12:27:48

      I am so sorry about Nylablue missing her grass and your back yard….how unfair for you both:( Minnie has found the patio to be comforting as it heats up during the daytime and is like her own heat pad…so she explores around and checks out the grass then when she has had her fill she stretches out on the patio like she owns it:) And she does:) Give Nylablue a hug and a head pat…sending hugs to you Sherri-Ellen and happy thoughts:)

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  8. Nylabluesmum
    Aug 06, 2014 @ 17:19:53

    Thanks HRCG! It has been a huge adjustment for us…for all the ground floor tenants… Today was the first day I sat out with Nylablue during the afternoon & actually enjoyed it. Nylablue wants to go on the grass but I can’t let her on it. There is a woman in here who has been watching me aka spying & reporting to Housing I was putting out ‘scraps’ for the wildlife….
    14 of the 28 ground floor tenants got notices to cease & desist….anyone who is feeding birds or chipmunks or squirrels or ducks….& feral cats (that would be me).
    I am very upset about this but I have no rights & so must stop. Funny thing is NO cat came last nite for food; maybe they knew something I didn’t???
    Now I have to close the drapes so I do not see if any ferals come here because it will hurt far too much!
    I am beyond weary of this place & the people who feel my business is their business. Sorry I am not more positive. I feel trapped.
    Sherri-Ellen & Nylablue x0x0x0
    P.S.: Kisses to the lovely Minnie ❀ ❀

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Aug 08, 2014 @ 21:17:53

      :(:(:( So very unfair for you all! Am glad that you and Nylablue were able to get out in the fresh air for a bit….I’m so sorry that you can not even do what is decent with the ferals due to the spy….who is a huge huge pain in the rear end…she needs to mind her own business and not everyone else’s! Hugs for you both and lots of prayers…thoughts and kitty rubs…Minnie says yeeeaowl:)

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  9. Nylabluesmum
    Aug 12, 2014 @ 15:59:55

    It is all unfair! Turns out Greyboy has been looking for food here so he has NOT moved on. I am thinking of putting food out tonite!
    My friend S. gave me a pair of binoculars so I can watch the nosy neighbor…I know, I know it is sinking to her level; however I can now see if she is watching out the window….2 can play at this game!
    This woman & her brother are both snoops as are a few others here; then there is the gossip…it is not the nice place it used to be. I am standing my ground…one way or another!!!!
    Nylablue sends her ‘eeowws’ to sweet Minnie.
    Thanks for the support, Sherri-Ellen x0

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Aug 19, 2014 @ 19:56:59

      It is totally unfair gf…I’m so sorry as I know how much your heart grieves…good for you that your friend gave you some nocs…and yeah I hear ya.Give Nylablue some hugs and ear rubs:)

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  10. Nylabluesmum
    Aug 21, 2014 @ 16:15:42

    Hello HRCG since I got the ‘nocs’ I have been able to check for snoops & then have been able to put food out for Greyboy & Braveheart. πŸ˜‰
    Can’t keep a good woman down (for long).
    I saw the snoopers/gossipers together today & I just laughed at them. That felt GREAT!!
    Kissed Nylablue from you & she purred.
    Please kiss Minnie for me.
    Sherri-Ellen x0

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Aug 22, 2014 @ 00:45:43

      Right on gf:) I am laughing with you but be safe ok…those people are not nice…so be safe with Nylablue and be good ok:) And I am thankful you were able to give food to Grayboy and Braveheart…you are a very good heart my dear friend….sending hugs, prayers and kitty paw pats and rubs:)

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  11. Nylabluesmum
    Aug 22, 2014 @ 16:37:58

    πŸ˜‰ I am being very very careful….Do not want to be found out of course.
    Between Legal Aid & Landlord & Tenant Act I could tie Housing up in knots….I just do not want to have to do that. I want to get along with everyone; however I will not be bullied or ordered about….
    Greyboy & Braveheart are what matter; they returend for the week I did not feed them so obviously they were relying on me///
    Thank you for the compliment HRCG…
    Nylablue sends her love to Minnie & I send best wishes too.
    Sherri-Ellen x0

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  12. Nylabluesmum
    Aug 24, 2014 @ 17:17:56

    Thank you for understanding HRCG. I have been feeding ferals since I was a mere child. It comes as naturally to me as washing the dishes. It is what I do. turning a ‘blind eye’ was awful. I had to keep drapes closed. It physcially hurt to not care for the ‘boys’, Last nite Braveheart let me take a few pix of him & he let me talk to him thru the patio door. So I shall carefully continue on…..
    Thank you for the compliment.
    Sherri-Ellen

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Aug 26, 2014 @ 23:15:28

      I know I know it well…I have been that way too…it seems odd I guess but I can sense what my horses feel and my cats and my dogs…animals have always forever and forever been a HUGE part of my life as I lived so far away from people and my animals were and are my people…my family so to speak…but I love them each and all and I am very happy that they can share their hearts with us…animals are so very special…so very special. I am so sorry that you had to endure the hurt in not feeding the ferals…I would feel the same!!! I understand very much so gf:)

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  13. Nylabluesmum
    Aug 27, 2014 @ 19:27:27

    Same here. When I was raised by my Grnadparents they had a Chicuahua named Chiquas (we called him Chico) & I thought he was my ‘older’ brother…He lived to be 9 yrs old & I was 8 1/2. Losing him was awful. My family never made fun of me. My Nanna go a Budgie she named Skippy & he was my tiny little brother. I was given my first cat when I was 12 1/2 & the love affair with felines started.
    As I lost 3 babies my 4 leggeds are my furkids to me. I know some people think me a ‘crazy cat lady’ & I don’t care πŸ˜‰
    Funny thing about my ferals…they are NOT feral….
    I am not sure if you saw th pix of Greyboy a few months ago? Well he had a tatty old black collar with a bell on. he got into a fight with Hercule Purr-o (who was a true feral). H.Poirot did not survive. When Greyboy showed up he had no collar. Interesting yes?? Then I noticed that Braveheart had something around HIS neck over the weekend,,,,I tooka few pix & guess what?? Now Braveheart is wearing a silver grey collar with a bell on it!!!!
    Some ferals they are, hahahahaha….
    They are not from same household as they almost got into a fight when they met on patio….they are both un neutered & quite hungry…they have put on weight since coming here so I will continue to feed them. I was sent fancy treats for Nylablue & she will not eat them so these boys are enjoying Blue Wilderness treats along with their wet food…
    I wouldn’t have it any other way!!!!
    Sherri-Ellen x0x0

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Sep 04, 2014 @ 21:32:22

      Yes I saw the pictures…and you are a heaven sent angel to those abandoned kitties. Makes me so angry when people adopt animals and then they find out they will have to take care of them…so they dump them out in the country! The first thing that happens is a den of coyotes smells them, and they begin to track the animals and kill them for dinner…they die a horrible death! It is so cruel and mean hearted! Sherri-Ellen, you are a God send to the abused, abandoned and rejected animals…your heart is good and you feel their feelings…and you are doing what you know is right…you are…yep I know it and so do the precious animals you have given life to…I will stand by you no matter what:)

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  14. Nylabluesmum
    Sep 07, 2014 @ 18:46:54

    Thank you HRCG!!! As I type tonite Braveheart is snacking on the patio under the cover of darkness. He has put on a bit of weight & he seems a bit *tamer*. He will at least listen to me when I talk to him. I feel this is my purpose in life: to protect & defend the 4 leggeds. I help with the ferals & I do as much rescue as I can (health permitting). i have connected many people to our Shelter so that their 4 leggeds & yes some were horses are not just set free to suffer & starve or be attacked by coyotes. Our coyote population is growing quickly because there is alot of **food** about with all the abandoned & dumped animals.
    Until I leave this world I shall do my best to advocate & assist all 4 leggeds who cross my path & need my help!
    Thank you for your support & kind words…
    Sherri-Ellen

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Sep 18, 2014 @ 14:33:19

      We protect and defend the animals as God has given us the gift of hearing them and feeling them in our hearts…somehow we can connect deeper with animals…and I feel very blessed by God for giving me that…you are a true blessing to the four leggeds…and I lift you up in prayer for protection and for abundance in food for the four leggeds:) God Bless:)

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  15. Nylabluesmum
    Sep 18, 2014 @ 20:24:11

    Everytime I look at your series of photos with the captions here I always smile πŸ™‚ Your captions of the horses asking where the grass is, is priceless…
    I love the way you worded how I feel about the feral cats. I DO ‘see’ them & ;hear’ them & ‘feel’ what they feel. That is why I am called ‘crazy cat lady’ in my building. I do not care what any of them think. God has given me a heart & soul & a love for Nature & 4 leggeds that has only grown as the years go by. Thank you for your kind words & prayers. Funny that even on my tight income I always have enough food for the ferals , whether my 2 here or the Riverbank ferals we take care of also.
    God bless you also.
    Sherri-Ellen & Nylablue x0x0

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Oct 09, 2014 @ 23:10:29

      Thank you so much Sherri-Ellen:) Your words are so kind:) I have always felt or heard what our animals think…I have to wonder if all animal people like you and I feel the same way…for me the solitude brings me in touch with them more. I do believe that you are in sync with them whether the feral kitties or Nylablue…they know you care and they know you love them…animals feel you when you love them and care for them…I have to tell my horse Melody to stay out of my space every time I groom her or feed her…and yet even after I buffer her she still wants to be with me and she respects me much better! Our animals are much like us…they just want to be treated with dignity and love…they love us and worry over us too! I missed you and Nylablue…

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  16. Nylabluesmum
    Oct 10, 2014 @ 19:04:10

    Hello HRCG…i do my best to be ‘in synch’ with the ferals; the wildlife & birds & of course, Nylablue! Altho the ferals are not actually feral (turns out Braveheart has a collar & bell; hmmmm & I am sure Greyboy was someone’s pet at some point), I do understand them not trusting humans much. After 7 months I am now able to touch Braveheart on his head…briefly but it is some progress. They both listen to me altho do not come to me….
    They are like 2 brothers vying for attention of their Mum, lol.
    Melody sounds lovely…there is nothing like ‘horsey love’…I remember BLUE the Appaloosa I used to ride back in the 80’s. He was 19 yrs old but acted like a young stallion. He was a sad boy; alone alot of the time. Soon as he heard my voice he would knicker & whinny & even kick the stall door like he was saying “Let me out!!”
    After my Brother died there was no way to get out to the stable…I have no idea what became of BLUE…I think of him still…
    Nylablue is still with us. She sleeps alot but seems content within herself.I have missed your too…
    Sherri-Ellen & Nylablue πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Oct 12, 2014 @ 01:26:15

      Animals are so very perceptive and intuitive…and very smart. People who abuse horses and all animals make me so mad! Or people who say a horse cannot feel or have emotions etc. or they are stupid….wrong wrong wrong…a horse is a large animal and yet they can feel a tiny fly land on their back…yes they can feel and yes they have feelings! Same with our kitty girls and our dogs…they depend on us to cover them and keep them safe in return for them trusting us…like you, I love animals and they bless me so much when they love me back:) That is so cool that Braveheart let you pet him…what a blessing to you and to Braveheart! Praying for Miss Nylablue and praying for you too Sherri-Ellen:) God Bless and I am so glad that we are friends:)

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  17. Nylabluesmum
    Oct 13, 2014 @ 16:05:32

    Hi HRCG: you are so right that animals are perceptibe & have emotions. That is easy to see & I wonder why so many people cannot see this fact?
    Little by little Braveheart is trusting me. I am now able to stroke him on top of his head. i do not push myself on him…just a few pats nitely. I want him to know he is special because I know that whoever his human is they do not show him gentleness or love…
    Poor cat is even out in the rain 😦
    God bless you & JB, Melody, Ellie & Minnie & all your 4 leggeds.
    Love sherri-Ellen & Nylablue xxx

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    • Hot Rod Cowgirl
      Nov 10, 2014 @ 21:32:58

      Hi Sherrie-Ellen and Nylablue:) I am finally on my word press site and the computer for fun! I hope all is well for you and Ms. Nylablue….health is ok and good. Minnie is doing fine but has had her bladder infection again so she has been back on Orbex for the antibiotic that she tolerates…the other ones make her throw up and get sick and this one is once a day and she does good with it. Tonight for the first time EVER she actually ate some canned cat food…she gobbled it up and loved it. It was tender shredded chicken in gravy by Fancy Feast….have to go to town tomorrow so will pick some more up. She has been very plugged up and is on some kind of laxative they give cats…so far it is not working! Her arthritouus is acting up more and she at times limps and makes me feel badly and frustrated…I do not want her to suffer any pain or feel hopeless…I do think she has been depressed so I am working on it with her. I do believe that is why God has you there with a purpose and a plan to help the animals out if they need it. What a blessing you are to them and all animals:)

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  18. Nylabluesmum
    Nov 12, 2014 @ 11:04:49

    Hello HRCG!! I am so sorry Minnie is going thru such a rough patch! Nylablue is getting over Cystitis flare-up also. Seems they both have their challenges.
    I used to use Petromalt or Lazatone for kitty constipation. It is Molasses & Petroleum Jelly…. there are a few flavors. Some cats just lick it off finger!
    I relate to the frustration because I can see Nylablue declining (it is ever so slight but I can see it…) I feel powerless. Mind you I have had 18 months of ‘borrowed time’ with her so I can not complain.
    As for the ferals they have moved on. No one comes to be fedd anymore. I am helping with Feral Cat Group some.
    We are true animal lovers! You are a blessing to Minnie for sure!
    ((HUGS)) Sherri-Ellen & Nylablue ❀ ❀ ❀

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