July is full of so many seasons out here in the middle of America. We have fireworks season, chokecherry season, lake season, running through the sprinkler season, county fair season, street dance season, grilling season, family reunion season and, of course, wedding season.
This month holds so much potential for fun and connecting with community and family that it’s one of the reasons I wait for it all year.
And one of the reasons each day of sweet July is planned, each square on my calendar is filled in with an idea and an event I cannot miss.
This weekend was one of those that has held its spot of anticipation for months. The youngest of the Veeder cousins had a date to get married and so the rest of the cousins were summoned from Western North Dakota, Eastern North Dakota, Southern North Dakota, Washington DC, South Dakota and Texas to give him hugs and cry because he was all grown up.
And so we were all together to celebrate most of the seasons: fireworks season, wedding season, grilling season, lake season, dancing season and family reunion season.
This past week spent with the cousins and family who used to gather in my grandparent’s tiny house tucked in the buttes of the ranch for Easter egg hunts and turkey dinner and carols by the Christmas tree has been the highlight of my summer.
And so I’ll tell you all about it when I sort through the photos.
I promised you last week and I’ll keep my word.
Because you have to see these beautiful and talented people. And I have to show you a photo of what we used to look like when we ran around these hills as kids decked out in our fanny packs and neon t-shirts, side ponytails and scraped knees.
You won’t believe that we all turned out to be pretty cool in the end.
It’s true, despite, well…this…
But for now it’s back to the grind and back to life on this ranch, a place that rings with the laughter of my cousins and the adventures we made for ourselves out here when we were glued together by grandparents that left us too soon.
Tonight Husband and I will move some cows from the home pasture out east, because July is also made for ranch work. I will sit on top of a horse I learned to ride under this very hot July sun all those years ago and think about the blessings and lessons this ranch has taught me about horses and family and what it means to hang on tight.
Coming Home: Learning their language, horse whisperer or not
By Jessie Veeder