The coolest thing is my new computer, a MacBook Pro. It's my first Mac and I am in love. Within half an hour of playing around with the Mac I practically threw my year-old Gateway laptop at Larry and said, "Here. You can have it." My two other PC's are now treated like red-headed stepchildren. I touch them only when I have to and when I do it's with disdain and grumbling. I fantasize of the day I can drown them in the bathtub and replace them with desktop Macs.
I also got a new horse. Well, really another large pony. "Oliver" is a beautiful 9-year-old flashy bay Quarter pony. At 13.2 hands (a hand is 4" for you non-horse folk, and horses are measured up to the top of the shoulder), he's perfect for both me and Alex. I used to hate being small and short. Now I'm thrilled because it means I can still ride ponies without looking ridiculous. Except when I fall. So far that hasn't happened with Oliver.
Oliver was given to us by Alex's riding instructor, who got him last year from a Prestigious Area Show Farm on trade for a larger horse. This winter has been bad for horse owners, and she didn't have enough hay for all of her horses and ponies so she asked us if we'd like to have him. Of course we said yes.
He needed a tune up after standing around much of the winter, so I've been hacking him out behind the house. He's a bit cheeky, but is coming along nicely. Here we are having a nice turn around the field:
In the back of my mind, the cynical part of me worried that Oliver had some terrible health problem, and that our kindly instructor had just been waiting for the perfect suckers to come along and take him off her hands before he bankrupted her. But yesterday the vet came and announced Oliver was Healthy As A Horse. The only thing he needed was to have his teeth floated. Again, for you non-horsey people an explanation: horses get sharp points on the back of their teeth that from time to time must be ground down with a mechanical rasp. The horse must be drugged for the procedure, and Oliver was given some good shit because afterwards I had to hold his lead rope to keep him from falling. Or floating away. Alex took this picture of me being all supportive of our poor drugged pony.
Work is going well. As in well, I mean I-could-pinch-myself- well. Last year when the newspaper laid off those of us who were copy-editing part time, I thought, "Well there goes the end of some pretty easy income." But fortunately it was the kick in the pants I needed to get myself organized with my freelance work. Now I've got more stable work than I've had since I can remember, while those who remained at the paper assuming they were safe are finding themselves jobless. It's a scary time to be a writer unless you have a niche. I count myself fortunate that I do. Let's hear it for porn.
The family is well. Jess graduates from college in May. I can hardly believe I'm going to be the mother of a college graduate! Wes is in school still trying to decide what he wants to be when he grows up. I told him good luck with that. John graduates this year and will continue on to a program for autistic young adults. Alex continues to astound me with her knack for self-directed learning. She's not flagged once in her studies, despite being consumed with interest in riding. Lucas has somehow managed to sit still long enough to learn to read and Larry is preparing for the upcoming farmer's market season.
Life is good, at least for today. And if something bad happens tomorrow we'll just weather it as we always do - with good humor and optimism.
Hope all of you are doing equally well. If you stop by and read this, show a little love. I'll try to get by your blogs as well.
UPDATE: After posting this it occurred to me that my readers might appreciate a little something slightly controversial from me, given my protracted absence. All I can think of to state is that I've been following the elections closely this year, and is it just me or does Hillary Clinton come off as a total cunt?
UPDATE II: Mike Huckabee just conceded, paving the way for McCain to lose without being bothered by competition in his own party. I wasn't surprised that Quirkabee stayed in the race as long as he did, but was kind of shocked to see that he claimed to be a conservative when he's married to another man.