This month marks the fourth year we’ve been back at the ranch and fourth birthday of “Meanwhile, back at the ranch…”
And while I don’t remember the exact day that we officially declared that we were never again leaving this place, I do remember the first day I decided to write about it.
It was a warm June day and the windows were open on the old ranch house. I sat at the kitchen table, my hair in disarray (because I just woke up and I had no intentions of setting foot in civilization), my laptop was open and my coffee was steaming in a real cup from the cupboard.
And when I say real cup, I mean one without a lid. Ceramic with a handle only made for taking trips across the kitchen or out on the deck…not across the country or to town for work or groceries.
That day I decided to share what it was like coming home to a place that raised me. The day I decided to try and explain how everything seemed so much smaller now that I was grown, that I didn’t have a place for my shoes in this house where my grandmother raised three kids, several foster children and hosted massive family holidays, the day I tried to make chokecherry syrup in a tiny, 105 degree kitchen, the day I slid down the gumbo hill in my pajamas in the pouring rain and warned you not to do the same, were days that were gifts to me only because you were out there reading and sharing your own stories about how you botched plenty of chokecherry recipes and how you might have a solution for my shoe issue….
And the stories and observations, the photos I took, the memories that percolated, might have started out in the cow pasture chasing a bull through a thorn patch or rushing to my husband’s side after he slid off the roof of the garage in the middle of winter, but they finished and found you because I have learned to sit with these stories long enough to bring them to life again somehow.
What a thing to sit.
It seems such a simple concept, but one we don’t indulge in much. But to sit for an hour or so in the morning, sipping coffee in my big chair, clicking away at the keys of the computer, and, if it’s nice out, maybe opening the sliding glass doors to hear the cows moo or the birds chirp, is the reason I have continued to keep writing and showing you things.
Because it connects me to this place in so many ways. It makes me an observer, a storyteller. It brings me back to moments that might otherwise have slipped away.
And I find myself then, not rushing out the door, because I have something that needs to get done, something I’ve got to tell you. And while I’m at it, I’m sipping my coffee from a real cup…
Coming Home: Take time to sip from a real cup and chat
by Jessie Veeder
Thanks for reading all these years. Thanks for sharing this place with me.
Peace, Love and many more coffee dates,