Every morning I manage to crawl from bed…morning person I am not…and thankfully I have a husband that can cook breakfast! Pancakes and coffee kick me out the door and we begin winter chores. I feed my puppy and throw a little extra to the big dogs, to keep them warm in the cold and to keep them from stealing Dally’s food as well. We hike a stone’s throw to the corral out behind my house, and haul grain to the heifer calves. Poured into bunks, the ground grain is increased a smidge a day, to help these little girls grow and hopefully start to cycle in good time. We have grained the steer calves in years before as well, unfortunately, our grain crop was poor this year. However, it does save us steps and time. We then puff across the field, OK, *I* puff across the field and Vernon heads for the tractor, the dogs and I head for the hay trailer. I then watch as Vernon expertly loads the trailer with 4 big bales and pulls up to hitch up to the trailer…my job is to drop the pin in to connect the two…and we’re off! Then follows a pattern. Stop, cut and pull strings, pitch hay, go to next haystack, load hay, stop, cut and pull strings, pitch hay, go to next haystack, load hay, stop, cut and pull strings, pitch hay. OOPS. Forgot about chopping the ice off the creek so the cattle can reach the live water. It takes us 3 hours or so every day to do this. Doesn’t matter how cold it is or how snowy or how I would SO much prefer to wrap in a cozy blanket, drink a few more cups of coffee, and read for a bit! Every morning I would prefer to not have to dress in coveralls and heavy Carhartt coat and boots. Every morning I would love more coffee. Every morning I would love more sleep. Every morning I see a different colored sky. Every morning the brisk fresh air wakes me up. Every morning my dogs make me smile, chasing bunnies, begging for love, noticing the wildlife, keeping me warm. Every morning I’m part of the cooperative that makes this ranch work. Every morning I can watch deer or spy a fox or coyote or see an eagle on the rimrock. Every morning I have a chance to take a photograph someone might like. Every morning I see a world that is part of me. Every morning I am blessed.