On the Eve of 60

I am on the eve of 60 years of age peering across an amazing, tranquil, turquoise sea. My three daughters surprised me with a mother/daughter cruise and today we are in Cozumel. Exotic, beautiful, and a tad dangerous. And yet today, I can see it is a little illustrative of my life. 

Sixty years ago tomorrow, my little momma gave birth to me on a snowny night in Denver. My dad stayed with her as I was born, unusual in those days. 

Since then I have lived 13 cities in eight states, visited nine countries and 41 of the 50 states. I have lived in the big city and small town-loving them both. 

I have had three of the most wonderful daughters and nine husbands (got you-not really)! I have two terrific son-in-laws and the most amazing grandchildren!!

On this night before my sixth decade begins, I am grateful for the galactic ups and downs of my life (most of the time).  I have been abunditantly blessed. I have faced some times of gut-wrenching sorrow. I have seen thousands of amazing sunsets and been lucky enough to rise the next day to an opportunity to do it all again. 

I have loved deeply. I have climbed high mountains in foreign lands and ridden miles on the back of a true horse. 

What a wonderful life I have lived. If I had to check out today I would be okay. I have done and loved all of my days. 

But I am, oh, so eager, to head into my next decade. My three daughters each have their own futures to roll out. Futures of their own lives, achieving their own goals. I have grandchildren to watch as they grow into amazing young adults. 

I want to see my many diverse friends tell their own stories and win their own races ( whatever those are).   

And I want to see my young horses mature, develop and hopefully, jump the moon. 

My sixtieth birthday will dawn in many ways, as just the start of another day.  But I cannot tell you how grateful I am that I am here to wake up to one more day of my amazing life. 

Thank you, my family and friends, for 21,900 days of wonder, heart-break, joy and mostly of love.  Sixty years-wow-go me!  Go life!

Lauren and I in my fun, decorated stateroom

Two my beautiful daughters, Ally and Amber.

The whole group!

You are only as young (and crazy) as you act!

Nine Lives


Snowboy, our 23 year old, Pony of America (POA),  went to Texas A&M Vet (TAMU) Hospital right after Christmas.  While I knew they would be short staffed with the holiday I wanted to get him there before Lauren left for Florida.  Dr. Lynn Criner had diagnosed my pony with what she thought was a cancerous spot on the outside of his penis.

This pony has overcome many hurdles in his life from starvation to adoption from the  ASPCA to life-threatening colics. Not at all surprising for a cat, but a pony with nine lives, who knew? He is, also,  the pony that so many have ridden and enjoyed in his lifetime.

As usual, the lead vet, Dr. Whitmore, was not sure he agreed with Lynn’s diagnosis ( her diagnosis has always been right when I send a horse to them but the TAMU docs always are skeptical).  He thought Snow might just have a “summer sore” (an open area of skin where the flies have irritated and inflamed the skin) and not have cancer.  I was okay with that.  As the TAMU was seeing emergency patients first, we were not really sure when Snow would go in for surgery.

I got a call that night that the surgery had been completed.  They had cleared out the affected area.  Dr. Whitmore still wasn’t sure what he was seeing but they had sent a sample to the lab.  Snow had come through the surgery well.  They anticipated that he would have a rough night and a lot of swelling the next day with a time to come home to be determined based upon how he did.

The next morning, Dr. Whitmore called again.  “Come pick up Snowboy, he is yelling for his food and ready to go!”

“He doesn’t have a lot of swelling and he is not in a lot of pain?” I asked, “What are his instructions and when can Jordyn ride him?” Jordyn had just learned to canter and wanted to get back on Snowboy.

“No, he has very little swelling and seems happy as can be.  In fact, he can be ridden today”, he answered.

Wow, I thought, the wonder pony comes through diversity again.


About a week later, the histology report came back for Snow.  I was in a meeting at work when the phone lit up with TAMU information.  While people gathered in the room, I sat and listened to lab report and Dr. Whitmore.

“Well, it was both a summer sore and squamous cell carcinoma.” Dr. Whitmore stated. He went on.  “There is good news and bad news.”

My heart starting beating a little faster and looked around the room to see if anyone was noticing I was about to cry.

“The good news is all the margins look good on his penis.  We feel we got everything and the area is clean.  The bad news is that the cancer appears to have spread to his lymphatic system.”

Again, I risked a look around the room, no one paying any attention to me.

“What can we do?” I asked.

“Given his age, I think we just have to watch, wait and keep him comfortable.” he said.

Dr. Whitmore explained there was a chemo drug that might work but we decided it was not a good option for us now.

I said thank you and goodbye.  I took a deep breath and turned my chair to group with tears in my eyes.   Without missing a beat, although my thoughts and heart were going a million miles an hour,  I welcomed our international and traveling guests to the meeting.



We have decided to tell Jordyn and Kendyll the absolute truth about this matter.  We will lose Snow but who knows exactly when.  If any pony is up for the fight, it is Snowney Pony, as Jordyn used to call him.  We have enlisted their help as his nurses.  When grooming him, they will carefully check under his front legs and back for any new bumps or lumps.  They will watch him for discomfort or pain.

Mostly, they will lavish love and attention on the little white horse that we love so much.  He will probably outlive me!  But if he is on his ninth life here, this time he is going to be one super spoiled boy!


Jordyn with her friend, Abby, and Snowboy



Thank you for riding along!