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What I learned from horses, cats and dogs about love! Partnerships that work! #horselovers #RelationshipGoals

Raising Standards

What I Learned from Horses, Dogs and Cats About Love

I love animals of all types and have been fortunate to have many of them in my life. I’ve owned horses, dogs and cats and the occasional bird. I ran a holistic horse board and care facility. I even once interviewed to be a “princess” in a reptile competition! (Talk about dredging up old memories!)

Currently, the menagerie consists of one horse—my “dream boy,” Bazan—and two cats, Milo the Magnificent and our Buddha cat, Pye (short for Pyewacket, the name of a mystical cat in the movie “Bell, Book and Candle”—another stroll down Memory Lane).

Bazan, my angel, my  friend, my partner!  Ain’t he cute?!


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“Responsibility” is NOT a Four-Letter Word!

IMG_0106In another post, “Mother,” I talk about responsibility not being a four-letter word. For reasons which will soon be clear, the subject bears further discussion for your consideration.

The word itself generally (almost always, actually) evokes decidedly negative thoughts and feelings. Think about the last time someone told you that you were responsible for something. Was it a good thing that you were being praised for? Or was it for something bad that you had done? Somehow you had failed. I bet most of you will say it was said in a negative tone and context.

When we take responsibility for the environment, we are better able to create a better future. The same concept applies to love relationships. Owning the bad as well as the good leads to more good! (Taken on a trip to Patagonia, AZ.)

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Love Stress in the Work Place

2D Cover croppedHaving worked my entire life, I’ve seen the impact of failed relationships on the job. Divorce, cheating, unhappiness, failure—very visible, palpable, and somewhat consuming of thought and action on the job.

While I have not yet found any concrete statistics on the extent of lost production time in dollars and cents from such relationship stresses, I’m sure it’s significant.

Our wedding invitation, 1987. Wedding featured horses, bales of hay, a country band, western dancing, and a preacher dressed in black, head to toe. Yeehaw!

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Mom paintingI’ve been thinking about my mother of late. March 20th would be her 92nd birthday if she had lived past the tragically-young age of 56. On the 20th, I will celebrate her life in my heart.

As I mention in my book, Mother was married so many times that until very recently, my brother and I could not agree on how many times exactly and to whom. I say “until recently” because Mark finally convinced me that his number—eight men, nine marriages (she married Dad twice)—was correct. Never mind that I knew nothing about a couple of these marriages! Or that at least one of them may have been spiritual but not legal. At least Mark and I agree!

Mother in Philadelphia, 1942. Beautiful and so unhappy. Artist: Helen Oman Gross, my aunt.

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Valentine’s Day—Raising the Bar on Standards

CTUtahWhen you accept lower standards in your relationships, you seal your fate. I know first-hand.

Charley and I have been spending the last few days—including today, Valentine’s Day—building a piece of furniture for Charley’s office. And while it’s for his office, I love helping him create it. In my last marriage, this sort of jointly created activity just never seemed to happen. When I look back at all the years that this unhappy relationship was acceptable to me, I shudder. It is not a compliment to me that I felt that this was the best I could do.

Look at those rabbit ears! Charley and me having big fun at our ranch in Utah. My garage was 1,500 sq. ft., bigger than the house we moved into when we returned to California.

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