I hope you enjoyed the images from the rodeo in Douglas I posted last week. I was so caught up in the action that I forgot to show you these beauties! They closed out the last night of the rodeo by pulling some important State Fair folks in a carriage behind them. They were absolutely gorgeous and on their best behavior.
When I moved to Wheatland back in March, I took this picture and titled it Bridge to Paradise. It was posted in Uprooted Magnolia, the beginning (before I moved the blog to WordPress). Anyway, it is the bridge that carries us over the Laramie River and leads me to my new home.
In June when the Laramie River was raging, Patrick had to take a chainsaw to the buck fence to keep debris from taking it and the bridge down.
Recently, with some help from Ron and Debbie, they were able to put it back up and it looks even better than before. At this time, it is surrounded by beautiful sunflowers and sage brush, and the river flows peacefully underneath.
Now this is Paradise.
Bull Riding closed out the rodeo and all I gotta say is ouch. I had bleacher butt by the end of it but I’m sure I wasn’t half as sore as these guys.
The cowboys yank the gate open and out they come.
Huh. This doesn’t seem so bad.
Kinda like dancing.
Oh, wait. Uh-oh. Look out!
Get out tha way!
Oh no. There he goes.
Thank goodness for the bull wranglers. I guess that’s what they’re called. They are there to distract the bull from the cowboy so he can get away quickly after the fall. I wouldn’t want that job.
The testosterone was flowing through the arena this night and it was quite tense. We had a lot of fun and I found myself cheering them on at times with fists clenched, raised above my head yelling whoo, whoo, whoo.
I was glad to wake up the next morning to cuddle with my kitty cat and paint my toenails. You know, girlie stuff.
This nice gentleman never misses a rodeo. He and his buddies had a front row seat to the event and we enjoyed visiting with him before the gates opened and the cowboys went airborne.
Mutton Bustin’ was hilarious and so cute. Do not be concerned, sheep were not harmed in this event but there was some dirt eating on the kids part. The rodeo clown took good care of them and grabbed then by their vest if it got too intense.
This next contestant got the wooliest sheep in the herd. It was supposed to help him but…
…then came the crash. He literally ate dirt.
A few tears were shed but at the end, these up and coming bronco riders got a kiss from and posed for the cameras with the Rodeo Queen contestants.
And the winner is….Brittany Richards! Formerly Miss Butch Cassidy Days.
I don’t know much about Miss Rodeo Wyoming but I do know that they receive a big Dodge Ram from Fremont Motors in Rock Springs.
Take some Ibuprofen and put on some padding because the bull riders are up next.
The rodeo started with a touching National Anthem while the current Miss Rodeo Wyoming rode her horse around the arena with the American Flag.
Then the gates opened.
Dirt kicked up and hats went flying.
The expressions are priceless.
This roan horse was our favorite.
Still to come: Crowning of Miss Rodeo Wyoming 2010, Mutton Bustin’, and Bull Riding.
I’ll give you some time to apply an icepack to your achy muscles before I show you the bull riding.
Every Saturday for the past month or so at Pocket Park in Downtown Wheatland, local growers have hosted a Farmers Market. We enjoyed some yummy squash and zucchini last week and this past Saturday morning I made it in time to get a couple of ears of corn too. There is a young man who is growing corn to raise money for his college fund so next week I plan on buying a couple dozen to freeze for the winter.
I’ve also enjoyed some herbs from a sweet lady that offered me a taste of fried sage this week. She fried the sage leaves in olive oil with a little salt and pepper and boy was it tasty! Her sage bundles were all bought up before I got to her table so I grabbed the last bag of rosemary and hope to get some sage next week.
There was a young woman there who is a missionary with her family in Honduras. She’s in Wheatland caring for her grandmother for the summer and brought these lovely treasures that she and her siblings have crafted. They are vases and small pots made of pine needles and wrapped with colored thread. There’s even napkin holders and heart-shaped trivets.
She roasted coffee beans from Honduras and had a few bags to sell. Of course I bought the beans because I am a coffee fanatic.
I didn’t buy much but it’s a weeks worth of vegetables for the 2 of us. Squash, zucchini, corn, rosemary, and coffee. The corn is already gone, it was a test drive to see if it was as tasty as it looked, and the vegetables will be steamed every night this week.
Saturday night, Patrick took me to the State Fair in Douglas for my first ever rodeo. It was so exciting! Those cowboys that ride the bucking horses and bulls are certainly brave and a little crazy I must add. I’ll write and show you pictures soon as I’m now sorting through all the wrecks that make my fanny a little sore just looking at them.
And stay tuned to find out which one of these lovely ladies was crowned Rodeo Queen 2011. I know you are on the edge of your seat but be patient, I will announce the winner soon.
We gathered a few of the neighbors cows the other evening because they sneaked into our pasture when we weren’t looking. All ranchers put up with cattle thinking the grass is greener over the fence. So it’s not unusual to get a call about cattle leaks. We drove the rhinos through our rocky pasture and directed the cows back home.
The sun was setting and it was turning into a beautiful evening. A storm was brewing miles away but never reached us. That gave way for some really nice light topping the hills.
Look at the colors on this little guy. He is Dactylotum bicolor aka painted grasshopper.
Not only do we put up with an abundance of grasshoppers but also hopping around are very happy and very loud locusts.
I remember sitting on the front porch of a Georgia neighbor and his friend visiting from New York said “What is that noise, do you guys here that”? And in unison we all said “What”? He was referring to the songs of the katydids and we were so used to it, we didn’t even hear it anymore. Well my Georgia friends, I hear their songs out here too and it makes me think of y’all.
Have a great weekend everyone.
I pulled down the driveway and spotted our turkeys waddling across the dirt road. I turned the car off and they stopped to look me over. Slowly and quietly I grabbed my camera off the seat and stepped out. They waddled off so I focused on a sunflower patch to get my exposure set. I followed the camera shy turkeys and photographed them until they disappeared over the hill. It wasn’t until I put my card into the computer that I found I had captured a bee on his way to pollinate this sunflower.
I love it when accidental images happen. As you can see, I’ve experimented with different filters in Photoshop. I fell in love with some framed Giclee photographic prints in a gallery in Martha’s Vineyard. It got my creative juices flowing.
P.S. None of the turkey portraits turned out.
The Platte County Art Guild along with Helen and LeRoy Rutz decided to start a Gallery in an empty retail space in Downtown Wheatland. It is a local artist co-op and they’ve been up and running for a couple of months now. The art guild welcomed me in with open arms and now I too am a member of the co-op! Yesterday Helen helped me hang a few of my framed prints from my travels to Greece in 2008 and I also hung a few from my Wyoming collection.
Because this is a commission free gallery, the funds are low for obtaining a sign. But I’m sure if we artists put our heads together we’ll come up with something. Helen says it’s already in the works and we’ll be rid of the poster and cardboard sign soon.
My elk duo in the velvet made the front window!
When you walk in the front door, you will be greeted by one of the artists showcased in the gallery. Every member will put in a day or two a month of running the gallery.
There are all kinds of mediums in the Gilchrist Gallery. Paintings, pottery, stained glass, sculpture, photography, jewelry, and all kinds of arts and crafts.
I’m so excited to be a part of this gallery and I look forward to my first day of “work” in September.
I haven’t met all of the artists but my new friend Victoria Bennett-Beyer has her photography hanging in this gallery as well.
I’d like to invite you to visit our art gallery and to explore our beautiful little town of Wheatland. And if you have any questions, leave it in the comments section or just shoot me an email!
We had a nice time at The Vinyud and I always enjoy getting home and back into a regular routine after a vacation. Oh who am I kidding, there’s no regular routine around here. But smelling the manure and sage again is comforting and puts a smile on my slightly sun soaked face.
Even the clouds and hills welcomed us home with a smile.
Summertime is covered in dragonflies out here in the country. My little blue friend greeted me on the porch while I sipped my coffee the morning after we arrived home. He was happy to see the camera again.
We were also welcomed with another double rainbow . We took an evening drive for groceries and the town was lit up with this colorful streak of light in the sky.
There really is no place like home.
Our first sunset was lovely but the clouds were very low on the horizon which prevented the full effect of the sun setting beyond the ocean.
The last night on the island we had a clear sky and no clouds on the horizon.
With every minute passing, the color of the ocean and sky would change. It would all glow with a blue or purple hue, then orange.
A perfect view for our last night on the island.
Que the clapping, dogs barking, and children screaming with glee.
In this small fishing village of Menemsha, which was our home-base, is a sculpture of a man spearing a swordfish. It represents a time when this was popular trade for the village. The sculpture was created by an artist named Jay Lagemann and is displayed on the dunes.
That’s my handsome fella on the far right. He was so patient with me and my constant quest for the perfect light.
This is an area of the harbor where the movie “Jaws” was filmed. Quints shack was temporarily built for the movie on this plot of land overlooking the harbor.
Patrick and I watched these fishing boats come in full of fluke and striped bass and much more. The fish markets were always stocked with tons of fresh seafood that we gobbled up every night.
Wonderful few days last week spent with my family on The Vinyud. Joey is 18 months old now, walking, talking jibberish, and is ALL boy.
He would flash his long lashes and baby blues after playing in the only dirt hole at the park .
Show off his teeth while laughing at that big guy we call Patrick.
And would act coyly when asked for a high-five.
We took the Red Dun horse, Chugs best friend and brother, to the South Ranch to run with the other horses. We wanted to do this so that he didn’t have to be at the main ranch to see Chug leave.
The horses raced over to see the new guy but there was a creek between them.
Chug was in the trailer behind us and the Dun horse did not want to leave his friend. He would run back to the trailer, breaking my heart with every whinny.
So the others came closer.
Patrick and the Dun made it across and they all finally met.
Then he ran.
And they followed.
And when he tried to run back over to us, they turned around.
And he followed.
He’ll be OK. He’s probably already forgotten the trauma of the separation.
We brought Chug back to the main ranch to wait for his ride. He was pretty upset in the corral all by himself. I went in with him to talk it out. I pet him and he followed me around while I reassured him that he was going to a great place and to a wonderful family. His eyes are so kind and his lashes so long.
He’s hoping that these pesky horse flies aren’t back east. I told him I honestly didn’t know and to not get his hopes up.
So long Chug, you will have a wonderful life. I’m sure of it.
I met this colt on my first visit out to the ranch, in June of last year. He was very young and still attached to mom.
When I came out in January, he was off of his mom and in a pasture with his brother and best friend. They eat together. Pose for the camera together.
Walk in sync together.
Get into mischief together.
He’s pictured here in his winter coat and is so handsome. Little did we know then that his name would become “Chug”, for Chugwater Wyoming and that he would soon be living back east in North Carolina.
And little did I know how hard it would be to separate these two.