Puzzled

It felt like my world was falling apart
I kept trying and trying
But I couldn’t even start
To pull it all back together again

A million pieces
laid out on the table before me
So many colors I couldn’t see
What the picture was supposed to be

On instinct, I reached out
For help from a friend
Who put things in perspective
And set me on my way to mend

Pieces were missing
From my puzzle of life
That’s what was causing me
All of the strife

My problem has now been identified
And I can breathe a sigh of relief
I no longer have to hide
All the feelings of failure I’ve kept inside.

The road will be long
Filled with mountains and hills
But just knowing
Provides me with so many skills

And new friends have been made
To share in my new campaign
As together we lift spirits
To ease each other’s pain

And my eyes have been opened
To a brand new world
There is such beauty in pain
It’s a double-edged sword.

The future is less blurry
The colors are more bright
The puzzle slowly comes together
There is an end in sight

So, lend a hand this coming year
And place a puzzle piece
It’s only with the helping hand of friends
Our blessings will increase.

© 2016 -LRFB

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If you like poetry, check out more of my creations here.

A Goodbye to a Friend

It’s the little things
that once added together
Can equate to problems.
At first, I let it slide
I gave you the benefit of the doubt
But as time has progressed
and I have witnessed you in action
Repeatedly,
I feel you have abused that privilege.
You eject words from your mouth carelessly.
And you are blind to the effect they have
On those around you.
From what I have witnessed
You are obstinate in your views
and once you form an opinion
No amount of empirical data
or intelligent debate
Can persuade you of any possible
Alternatives.

I have watched as people
You once called dear friends have
Vanished from your life
With hearts wounded by
the nocuous words you have directed at them.
I wonder if you see the part
You have played in their withdrawal
from your world.

I’ve been withdrawing
Slowly, for a few years now
But your recent remarks
Have pushed a need for acceleration.
I have been trying to cleanse
My world of the negative
And embrace the positive
Which at first  was difficult and unnatural
But is becoming easier and more habitual
with the passage of time.

While your words don’t carry the weight the once held
the memories of past hurts are hard to erase
And I know that to cut our bond
Will allow me to spread my wings a bit more.
I can no longer allow myself
to be weighed down with past sentiments,
that are blurred at best, if I am to grow
In love and light
In possibility and positivity.

So I must say goodbye, you see
That we may part ways
And flourish in new opportunities.

© -LRFB

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If you like poetry check out more of my creations here.

The Struggle

Mercury is in retrograde
And the air is heavy
with tumultuousness.
There is a reoccurring theme
of struggle
Heavy on the minds
of the enlightened.
Our world today
Runs at such a hurried pace
Fitting “it all in”
is preposterous.
Yet, we try.
And so often
in the journey
of our pursuit
We neglect ourselves
or our loved ones
And forget that the
things that hold the most value
Are not “thing”s at all
They are people,
And they are the intangible
Beliefs, Morals, integrity.
So breathe
my friends
Breathe.
Calm your pace
Ignore the “mess”
Gather your loved ones.
Give hugs and kisses and thank you’s.
And go outside and inhale
the scents of the coming change
of the seasons.
Mercury Retrograde won’t last
much longer.

© -LRFB

If you like poetry, check out more of my creations here.

 

The Things We Carry

Most of us carry around some sort of baggage from our pasts.  Did you know that if you carry around an emotion with you from a thought or an event and you do not process that feeling that it can build up within you on a cellular level and make you sick?  Until more recently, neither did I.  I’ve been learning a lot over the past year about health and wellness and healing.  How it’s not just what we eat, how we sleep and how we exercise that keeps us healthy, but also what we store within our subconscious, how we think and even how we act that can lead to feelings of stuckness, or even sickness.

When I’m looking and listening to the universe I often find that the same topic will repeat itself in various places.  It will literally pop up on my Facebook in the form of a quote, or it will be the topic of the next podcast in my queue, or it will be mentioned in a casual conversation with family or friends.  When I notice these topics I try to take a look and a listen to see what is going on within me that needs to be addressed.

Forgiveness has been a hot topic in my reading material and podcasts as of late and when my writing prompts led me to write about “the things we carry” I put all the pieces of the puzzle together.  I feel as if I am carrying around a burden that needs to be lightened .  I feel like my subconscious is asking me to forgive something.   It could be a person who was done wrong to me, maybe I need to ask for forgiveness from someone I have wronged, perhaps I need to forgive myself or maybe it’s a combination of all of the above.

So I delved into some of my feelings and really listened to my multiple podcasts on forgiveness.  I figured out which category the forgiveness belonged to and I made a plan of action on how to forgive.  I’ll tell you forgiveness does not always come easy and honestly it goes against human nature.  There is a little part of me that still wants to hold onto certain events, but I the urge and want to grow outweigh the need to hold on to the past.  I want to move forward, I don’t want to stay stuck and to accomplish this I must throw out a little forgiveness.

I challenge you this week to look within yourself and see what you are carrying around with you.  What is leaning on your subconscience and weighing you down?  What do you need to do to lighten the load your subconscience is carrying so that your hands and mind are free and open to accept something new and wonderful?

 

 

 

Animals of the Homestead-Chevy Update

I was hoping a Coworker would adopt our little Chevy, but when I probed him for an answer he was unsure he wanted to add another animal to his home.  The chaos in the house was becoming overwhelming for me.  The dog barking anytime the cats fussed, Chevy pouncing on covers as I tried to get my child to sleep… I felt as if I was going to break.

I decided to play the social media card as I know a LOT of animal loving people and was hoping one of them might make a good home for her.  The same day I reached out a friend contacted me and said she wanted her and would come pick her up THAT evening.  The answer was a blessing.  My son knows the people and can get regular reports on the baby kitty when we see them and she didn’t care when I told her, “I do want to warn you she’s into everything.”

I have gotten updates that Chevy happily chases their dog around the house and snuggles with them at night.  I am so thankful this little kitty found us and we were able to find her a kind and loving home.  The house is almost a little too quiet, but much more peaceful.

Animals of the Homestead-Chevy

It was a Thursday when she came to us.. . . because we couldn’t have a normal week.  My husband had just taken out the trash and told me “We have chickens at our gate”.  I seriously thought he was messing with me, but no sure enough there was a rooster and a chicken at our gate.  Smudge took care of that and ran up on the fence scaring them across the street.  I threw him in the house to keep him from getting any ideas about chasing them across the street and went back to my morning routine.  I was strapping the boy in the car seat to take him to school when I heard the crying meow of a kitten.  I turned around and started scanning.  Sure enough, there was a baby kitten under my husband’s work truck.  I picked her up, brought her inside, showed her to my husband, made a makeshift litter box out of a box added some food and litter and stuck her in the bathroom to deal with when we got home.

When I did rescue I fostered 8 kittens at once and I had promised myself after that I would never have another kitten again.  Now I remember why.  Kittens are a little on the crazy side.  They are full of energy, that want to play all the time, with everything that moves, including the covers at bedtime.

The dog took to the kitten immediately adopting her like she was her own offspring.  Playing with her and protecting her from the older cats.  I’ll be honest.  I didn’t want another cat.  I was more than happy with our 3 cats and dog, but here she was and what are you supposed to do when they show up on your doorstep?  I thought if it doesn’t work out she’s little and cute and we can find her a home.

Chevy is a pistol.  She has no fear.  Not of the dog, not of the cats.  She is a brave explorer of anything she can climb.  She even had the privilege of being looked in the lazy susan pantry due to her curiosity.  She is already an excellent bug hunter and would probably flourish outside, but with as many snakes as we’ve had at our property lately I would never let her out being so small.  When she is not being a wild huntress, she also has a softer side.  You can pick her up and she immediately starts purring.  You can hold her like a baby and she likes to get right up next to you to cuddle at night.  She is quite a character.  I’m just not sure she is the right character for our household.

We got her spayed this week and I talked to my friend in rescue about putting her in the adoption program.  She is driving poor Boo nuts with all her antics, and the dog has been too aggressively protecting her baby.  I can’t take all the barking every time one of the cats makes any type of sound that sounds like fussing.  I have a co-worker who’s interested in her.  I think he’s going to take her home this weekend or next week.  I hope so, it would be nice to know where she ends up.  It’s a little heartbreaking caring for a creature and then having to part with it, but we have to do what’s best for the whole homestead.  I just hope the boy, as sensitive as he is, takes it ok.

Animals of the Homestead- Boo Kitty

 

Boo Kitty appeared in our yard a few months ago.  I first spotted her across the street in the neighbors yard.  She was trying to come across the street into our yard, but our “guard” kitty kept chasing her back across the street.  The week following, our neighbor asked if we were missing a cat.  I asked if it was a black cat and she said yes and I told her I thought it was a stray.  She said she was going to feed it.  I thought that was a grand idea.  A week or so later she was lounging in our yard.  The dog ran up to her and she just laid there in the yard.  Sadie nudged her and pranced a little then nudged her again.  The cat stayed where she was.  The dog looked up at me with a goofy grin that said “We have a new kitty?”  and that’s how we ended up with Boo.

Boo was nothing but skin and bones when she appeared in our house.  My thought was, “I’m going to have to fatten this kitty up before I take her to get her spayed.”  In the mean time, she has endured much torture by the child, has been bullied by our outside kitties, she’s also done a bit of bullying, at one point claiming the back porch and not letting the boys on it.  She’s left us presents of lizards and finally found her way inside.   Her confidence in the presence of the dog and her lovey, cuddliness in the house led me to believe that she had at one point in time been someone’s pet.

This past week we final made an appointment to get Boo spayed and this is where the story gets interesting.  The vet tech called me in the afternoon after we had dropped her off and told me that when they had shaved her down in preparation for her spay they noticed she already had a spay scar.  When we picked her up they hadn’t microchipped her either because she already had a microchip.  Why I didn’t think to take her to get her scanned for a microchip I don’t know.  I sucked it up and called the microchip company, because if it was my cat I’d want her back and I wanted to do the right thing.  They said there was an owner listed and they would get back to me shortly.  Not 5 minutes later my phone rang.  It was my friend I’ve done rescue with for years.  “Do you have my cat?” she asked me.  We both laughed.  What are the odds that this cat that showed up at my home was one from her rescue?  “Do you want her back?” I asked.  “No, you can keep her.” she told me.

So, Boo Kitty is ours.  She is incredibly sweet but the addition of 2 cats over the past few months has upset the balance of the house.  Smudge and Rocky try to chase Boo out of “their” yard if she goes outside, and inside she has to endure the torture of the baby kitty and the dog who barks at her if Boo fusses at the baby kitty because she thinks it is her baby kitty.  We’ve been thinking about trying to make arrangements to either find Boo a new home or the baby kitty a new home, but the boy loves all his kitties and it is a rather hard decision to have to make.  We are hoping maybe Grammy will take Boo to her house that way we can still see her on a regular basis.  We will see how it goes. . . until then. . . Boo makes the decision harder because she does give the most awesome hugs.

Animals of the Homestead-Smudge

Smudge holds a special place in my heart.  He came to us after two of my cats passed within months of each other.  (one was 21 and the other 10 but diabetic). When I felt  I was ready, I contacted my friend who does rescue.  I went over to her house to see who she had available for adoption.  No one jumped out at me or seemed to want to come home with me.  She insisted I come up to the clinic and meet one of the kittens that she currently had housed up there.  She told me he would be perfect for me, and she has this certain knack for matching people and cats, so I went for it.  My husband and I went to the clinic and met this handsome, fluffy brown tabby.  He wrapped his little paws around my neck and purred.  He was perfect and I immediately feel in love.

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Smudge is the type of cat that everyone (even people who don’t like cats) loves.  He has a huge heart for such a small creature.  He loves his animal friends.  He immediately took to Bella, whom I was hoping would take to him as I didn’t want her to be lonely after her longtime housemate passed.  In fact, Smudge is the only cat Bella loves on.  You can often find the two of them curled up together, and if it wasn’t for her I’m not sure he would venture back into the house as often as he does.  I tried to keep him an indoor cat, but when he discovered there were other cats outside he was fascinated.  He wanted to make new friends, so he became and indoor outdoor cat and immediately tried making friends with the outdoor kitties.  It took them a little while, but Smudge finally won them over.  Sadie loves all her kitties and Smudge took to her soon after his arrival.  Smudge is probably Sadie’s favorite of the kitties.  He runs to greet her, twines in between her legs and even chest bumps her.  Smudge even played with the rabbit we had for the short while he was a residence in our household.

Smudge has lovingly tolerated the love of  a baby and toddler, not once reacting in a mean way, even when the boy was being quite rough with him.  If his tolerance level had reached its peak he would run to the door and meow with a look asking to PLEASE be let outside for a break.  The Babe calls him “UM” a nickname lovingly given as he couldn’t pronounce Smudge, but he kind of stuck and I often find myself calling for “UM’ kitty with the babe.

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Smudge also likes to greet our friends and family.  He has been known to try to climb up your legs for a little attention or jump in your lap to head butt you in the chin.  He is a big love bug.  He is also a hunter.  As much as I didn’t want him to be an outside cat he has flourished.  He is an avid climber, explorer, and hunter of all small creatures.  As much as I try not to have favorites I have to admit if I did, Smudge might be at the top of the list.

Animals of the Homestead-Rocky

Rocky is one of the cats that came with our house when we moved in 6 years ago.  I’ll never forget the morning we met him.  Sadie was going nuts in the backyard when I let her out for her morning potty.  She was barking and bouncing around back and forth in front of the fence at something.  I didn’t have my glasses on so I squinted through the morning haze.  Is that a raccoon?  Is that some sort of little wild cat?  I put my glasses on and looked again.  That is one huge cat….

Having done Rescue, it is instinctual for me to start feeding the strays to try to coax them into letting me get near enough to capture them to make sure they are spayed or neutered. (I might have even been that crazy neighbor who borrowed your unaltered male cat for a few days to make sure he wasn’t spreading the love around the neighborhood). So I set out on my mission to befriend this huge cat.  I started putting food out for him and backing away and watching him eat to let him get used to me and slowly working my way closer and closer until I could Pet him.

It really didn’t take to long to win the big guy over.  His heart is through his stomach.  We named him Rocky because we had several instances of him boxing the dog, rolling the dog down the stairs and trying to attack a dog that came over for a playdate with Sadie.  Rocky is a fighter. We call him our guard kitty because if we leave the property and leave the gate open he sits but the gate guarding, waiting for us to return.  If a stray dog happens by Sadie will bounce and park hoping for a new friend and Rocky will pouf up and growl at them, daring them to come in our yard.

Rocky is also a big baby.  He loves to be loved on and sneaks in the house when it’s cold or wet.  He adores my husband and follows him around like a puppy. Whenever we are outside Rocky appears to hang out with us.  He loves to be talked to and scratched.

One of his talents is hunting.  Between him and the other outside kitties we have had all sorts of critters left around the yard…frogs, mice, rats, birds a snake… he is definitely in touch with his primal side and for weighing just shy of 20lbs he is surprisingly fast and agile.

I will always refer to him as the cat that came with the house, but if we ever move he is definitely coming with us.

Animals of the Homestead- Sadie

Sadie is our one and only dog.  A Catahoula mixed with who knows what and  I couldn’t have asked for a better dog.  She has the sweetest disposition and loves other animals.  She loves playing with other dogs at the dog park and even tries (annoyingly so) to make friends with the shy dogs or the nervous dogs at the park.  She follows them around trying to help them relax or if they are being extra feisty she will herd them away from the larger pack of dogs at the park.  She loves and protects all her cats, even if they don’t necessarily love her back.

The cats, as well as my husband, child and myself, are part of her pack and she takes care of her pack.  She is extra gentle with my parent’s 15-year-old dog when she comes over when my parents are out of town.  She even did fairly well with the rabbit for the short while we had him.  She was surprisingly wonderful with our son.  When he was a baby she growled at me when I blew raspberries on his tummy because she thought I was growling at him and she didn’t like it.  She kept close to him when new people came over to make sure she trusted them with her newest pack member.  She puts up with his often rough man-handling (because he also shares his food with her) and is almost always a part of our frequent park adventures.  She wants to make friends with everyone, child, adult or animal.  She has a gentle soul, and old soul, and is so incredibly wise for a dog.

So how did we get so lucky as to obtain this dog you might ask?  It went something like this. . . I was at the vet with my diabetic cat and I ran into someone I had worked with during my rescue days.  Her rescue worked with both dogs and cats whereas the one I had worked with was cats only so I asked her if she had any Border Collies or Aussie Shepherds available for adoption.  She did not, but had received an email from a woman needing help placing what she thought was an Aussie Shepherd, so she forwarded the women’s information to me.

The women was a park ranger and the dog in question whom she called Sadie was abandoned in one of her parks.  After she had been at the park for about a week and it started to flood the women couldn’t take it any longer and brought the dog home.  She already had a German Shephard puppy in an apartment and didn’t feel it was fair to have two large dogs in such a small space so she was looking to find a home for Sadie.  When we met with Sadie she was sweet and happy so we decided to bring her home.

After we had Sadie for about a month I could totally understand why someone might have abandoned her in a park.  She was very high energy and needed a LOT of exercise and stimulation, a far cry from the low maintenance Pit Bulls that I had owned previously.  She also couldn’t be trusted home alone not to find something to amuse herself with while we were gone, she had a fondness for nibbling things like my books and my favorite shoes. . . After Crate training, finding the dog park, and my husband being able to take her to work either to ride along with him or play with his bosses dog all day, she settled down enough to where we no longer wanted to abandon her at a park.  She got along great with the cats inside the house and she was a great exercise companion for me.  All in all, after we learned how to handle a smart working dog, we feel in love with our Catahoula Mix and I’m so glad we have had the pleasure of owning her.