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December 19, 2014: The Camera never Lies

Just two more days until the winter solstice. I get this fear this time of year that the light won’t return after the solstice; rather, it will get darker and darker. It never does, but imagine it, in a week’s time, all of us who live here will be enveloped in darkness. This fear of mine is right up there with my fear of being buried alive.

Today (for a change of pace) Pete and I worked on our holiday card. Last night I lay awake and thought hard about how we’d compose it. I’d originally thought that I’d draw one, but then I decided that a photo might be of greater interest to our far flung fans.

Well, I finally figured out that it would be best if we take three photos rather one photo of us all, otherwise we’d have animal mayhem here. I envisioned us including, in this card, one photo of the dogs and us, one photo of me and the chickens and the goats, and one photo of the horses. I also envisioned our including props – now that we had the big candy cane and the battery powered wreath, we were golden.

Taking these photos was easier said than done. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about patience, and that my goal in life should be as patient with Pete as I am with the critters. I’m actually getting better and better with the animals – it seems like the more I learn, the more patient I become. For instance, Raudi has this habit when I walk her up road for our ride, of stopping every few hundred yards or so. Rather than slap her with the crop, I instead now look ahead, inhale and exhale, and then extend my chi forward. She doesn’t move as fast as I’d like, but this is my problem, not hers.

My thoughts about patience went out the window in dealing with Pete and all the animals. He was in a hurry to get to school. So he wasn’t his usual relaxed self. And the animals, well. . . .

I made us first get dressed up. Pete and I put on our Icelandic sweaters, and I got the props, the candy cane and battery powered wreath.

Session #1: Chickens and Goats
Had to first catch and hold three, count ‘em three, chickens. I caught Chickaroo, Pete then caught and handed me Freebird and Sophie. I sat on the porch steps with the chickens – Sophie, in the middle, fluffed herself out. The other two did the same after realizing that I was a source of body heat. I let the goats out of their pen and put a bucket of hay before them. Heads were buried in bucket – uhh uhh, this was not very photogenic. Pete took several photos. In all, I look extremely stressed. The camera never lies.

Session #2 Dogs, Pete, and me
It was difficult, getting the dogs to all stay still. This is because they’re all quite healthy. Rainbow was worried, Jenna was clueless, and Ryder was energized. Pete had to take several photos in order to get the desired effect, which is a scene of domestic tranquility. The camera never lies.

Session # 3, The Horses and me
I walked into the pen with candy cane and wreath in hand. Raudi was at first uncharacteristically concerned about the wreath – she indicated this by flaring her nostrils, widening her eyes, pricking her ears, and raising her head high. On the other hand, Hrimmi thought that the wreath might be edible. Tinni, standing at the far end of the pen, wanted nothing to do with the holiday items. I had to go and get the halter and lead rope, and even then he was and remained less than enthused about the goings on. I next put the wreath and cane on Hrimmi’s back – the batteries fell out and had to be retrieved before the horses ate them. Pete took the photo – Tinni looked worried. The camera never lies.

Session # 4: The dogs, Pete, and me
When done with the above, Pete and I trooped back into the house. We looked at all the photos on the camera and decided to retake the one of the dogs and us. This time, we sat on the outside dog bed, which was more to Rainbow and Ryder’s liking. This was not at all to Jenna’s liking – she doesn’t like to hang with other dogs, just people. We yanked the poor animals around, set them up, and finally got a decent photo.

This afternoon, Pete took the images and combined them on the page. Then he printed them up. I have to say that the end product is reflective of the above. And it verifies what I know to be true, which is that the camera never lies.

Next: 339. 12/20/14: Dawn to Dusk