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The Storm Reminded Me

Today, a tempest overtook the entirety of SE Texas and just like I've done before, I found myself dashing from the barn to under the carport without an umbrella or a towel so that for, oh, I don't know, five or ten minutes, I sat on a fold out chair until I stopped dripping.It reminded... Continue Reading →

Stone

It’s mid-afternoon on another day in which the Texas weather can’t make up its mind about what to do. This morning, the air was thick and hung heavy over the ground, flies and grasshoppers rattling in the fallen leaves. The sun peeked through a web of thick clouds and it was bath-water warm. But now,... Continue Reading →

Two Weeks, Two Surgeries, and a New Year

2022 threw a big, ugly curve ball right as she was fixin to roll over to the new year. In mid-December, I had major surgery: a hysterectomy to treat endometriosis which has been a brewing, growing piece of my ongoing chronic illness that's infiltrated my life for over 5 years now. I knew at some... Continue Reading →

‘Twas the Night Before Donkmas

‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the houseSome small creature was stirring; could it be a mouse?Should it be some vermin, my cat would sure pounceAnd with a small “mew,” her win, she’d announce. A long dog was sprawled out across the big couchWhile I couldn’t sleep, which made me a grouch.I wandered... Continue Reading →

Grow. Grief.

This is one of my favorite things I’ve ever written. Rereading it this morning, I choked up. My garden did not do as well this year as the last: a months-long, crippling drought having dried out even the mossiest and stickiest swamps around here. Then a month of rain which waterlogged crackling roots. And now tonight, the forecast says the low here will be 9°F. 9. I’ve never been in a single digit temperature to my knowledge.

Having just had major surgery last week, my normal solo operation of winterizing for not just the plants, but my house and most importantly, my three donkeys, horse, and ducks, has had to be passed over to the hands of helpers who have so graciously sacrificed their time and strength to build the defenses of this place against weather it’s never felt either.

We sure have lived through an awful lot of “once in a generation” weather catastrophies.

For my fellow Texas friends, unscrew your hoses. Wrap your pipes real well. Drip your faucets or turn the water off all together and drain the pipes. Find your flashlights, your blankets, and get your outside animals out of the cold. The wind, especially.

My heart aches for people without shelter. I don’t know how anyone can see something this dramatic coming and not see that housing is a human right. It is a human right, shelter.

As I slowly recover having had not one, not two, but three complications now post surgery, I feel helpless in doing my part to batten down the hatches. But like those little tomatoes, I’m vulnerable right now, need protection, and am grateful beyond measure for the people in my life who have chosen to come help.

We all need each other so, so much. I want to keep getting back to that, any way we can.

Please be safe if you’re in this thing. Honestly, be safe wherever you are–the world feels like it’s running out of safe places.

Stay warm.
Love you.
Jess
(Original blog below)

A Donkumentary

It’s dark out which by no means means it is late. No. We have entered that time of year where the sun falls at 4:30PM forcing the chickens, ducks, donkeys, dogs, and heck even myself into an earlier, Pavlovian need to eat and bunk down for the night hours before they (we) otherwise should. I’m standing at the back window watching the patches of ground visible from the light by the lamp next to me. Leaves swirl and snap in all directions as the chimes outside my backdoor clash and clang. My phone griped earlier as a “wind advisory” alert was issued for my area and boy, they weren’t kidding. I could swear my house (though short and stout) is swaying.

Although I can’t see it, I’m looking in the direction of my garden. The weather forecast suddenly showed yesterday that tomorrow night, this swampy little corner of the world…

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