Happy Vista makes me smile...

Yesterday, I spent the afternoon at our ranch, Happy Vista, located on part of the Palo Duro Canyon called Happy Canyon. I am always amazed by it's beauty and vastness. Is that even a word, vastness? This place justifies making up new words to describe it.

Shannon is in the process of laying a water line through out in order to water cattle and supply our camper and one day, a barn-house. It's hard work in the heat of September, not to mention dirty! He hired a ditcher to ditch the ground and then we follow up by laying 2 inch x 20 foot PVC pipe, gluing it together and dropping it in the ditch. I can't tell you how many miles Shannon has done with the help of my dad and a friend, but it is a lot! I laid about 1,200 feet myself. Let me tell ya--my arms are so sore! those stinking pipes are heavier than you'd think!

I really enjoyed the work though. There's something about being outdoors with your hands in the earth that really connects you to the land. I cannot even imagine what the settlers dealt with when homesteading this area. Our ground is so hard and the wind blows like crazy, not enough rain and the heat--whew, I'm glad I live in the 21st century. It's a wonder anyone stayed!

I ran over a 3 foot snake at one point, I think he was just a grass one, at least there were no rattles on the tail. Surprisingly, that was the only one I saw. This is snakey country and this time of year they really come out to play. The grasshoppers were out in full force though. Man, it was like a plague! Every step you took, 20 grasshoppers would fly and jump all around you. I was constantly knocking them off me. When we stopped for lunch, I was sitting outside when 2 road runners came up to investigate our camp site. Have you ever been up close to a road runner? They are very prehistoric looking. I was fascinated by them. I bet I watched them for about 10 minutes before they ran off.

It was a good day. Manual labor like that is hard but also very healthy for a person's mind and soul too. Besides the physical work out, your mind is able to connect with the beauty around you. It feeds your soul and gives you a chance to soak up lots of vitamin D. This help me tremendously! I know my body must need lots of vitamin D in order to feel good. In the winter months, when sunlight is scarce, I sit under a sun lamp in order to "perk up." I follow the sun around the house without realizing it too. It helps me think straight and stay positive.

I can't help but notice the work of my Creator when I am outdoors. Especially with views of incredible canyons and amazing plant and wildlife. It's the best church service I could go to. And the sounds of nature, it's the praise to a glorious God. It speaks to my soul and brings me peace. It helps me find that place where everything is put in perspective. The world falls away and all that is left is serenity.



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