Thank you for visiting the Life at Ravenheart Blog. Ravenheart Farms is located near Kamsack, Saskatchewan, Canada (about 4 hours from Saskatoon, 3 hours from Regina, and less than an our from the growing city of Yorkton, SK).

Thursday, January 30, 2014

The Gift of Change

I recently reviewed a book called Brainstorm, Harnessing the Power of Productive Obsessions by Eric Maisel, PhD and Ann Maisel. Chapter 5 is titled Making the Ordinary Extraordinary, and Chapter 12 is called Early Daze. I deeply resonated with this book as it relates to what I will call my "Sacred Obsession" with the creation of Ravenheart Farms.

I would describe this Sacred Obsession as an inspired journey of the heart. Following is the first paragraph of Brainstorm. "In this book I'm going to describe a wonderful habit of mind that's available to you right now. When you get into the habit of biting more fully into your own ideas, stirring up brainstorms, and productively obsessing, you feel more alive and become more creative".

I can fully relate to this description when I think about my journey with Ravenheart. And I call it a "sacred obsession" because of the love, friendship and healing that Ravenheart has inpsired, for myself, the land, the circle of friends and family that have supported the vision with love and encouragement, the Wwoofers/helpers/volunteers whose dedication, hard work and friendship have helped to create and maintain the vision, and the many guests and workshop participants who have found their hearts here.

As the pelicans fly overhead with their grace and beauty, I think about the decision to move on and let this place go, knowing that it is waiting to inspire the dreams and vision of another.

We are being called to another place, another dream. It is time for Melva and I to create a place together. Although we have talked for many hours about how we might continue to develop and expand on this land, we have come to realize that it is important to purchase something together, that fills us both with new dreams and visions, and meets each of our needs for our businesses and way of life.

The community that has been created around Ravenheart Farms will have a deep and lasting memory, and although the connections will change somewhat, they will never be lost. I am so grateful for a chance to live this dream of passionate obsession, for the community of beautiful friendships and connections, and for the ability to let it this all go with love, and embrace the new.

I was joking tonight with a long-time friend about how I must have the most "strike-throughs" in her address book of all her friends. Really, if I think about how many times I have moved in my life, I wonder how "stable" I really am. And yet, here I am in the midst of another major life change, and I am feeling really grounded and settled. I am grateful for my ability "gift of change", also the title of a book I recently read by a favourite author, Marianne Williamson.

It is so peaceful here in the country. With trees surrounding the land, a small forest on each side of the yard, and no major roadways, traffic, or lights, it is truly a sanctuary of nature. Well, until Polly and the new dog (Laci, the dog that stayed with the farm) dog start fighting with each other, and I start yelling for them to stop!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

In Service to the Horses

In Service to the Horses
Normally, as I haul heavy bags of feed from the vehicle to the barn in a plastic sleigh, especially in winter when I can’t get my vehicle as close to the barn as I’d like due to the snow, I laugh at the idea of me pulling the heavy load while the horses look on over the fence. I find myself saying to them, “hey, why don’t you gals get over here and help me”, or “what’s wrong with this picture?” Today I had 3 heavy bags of horse feed, along with a large bag of cat food. I took the sleigh to the garage and hefted the bags out of the trunk of the car. That went pretty well. I then tried to haul the very heavy sleigh up and over a small step from the garage to the driveway. As I heaved on the rope, it broke, and I flew backwards, landing softly in a big snow bank, thankfully, and laughing as the dogs came running back to check on me after hearing the scuffle. After repairing the rope I began the haul up the long driveway to the barn yard. Yes, in hind sight it would have made much more sense to make a couple of trips! Nevertheless, as I was pulling the heavy load, I found myself feeling much appreciation for how the horses have been in service to us for thousands and thousands of years. I thought about the many ways they made life easier for us and for all the things we could never have done without them; the heavy loads they have pulled, the many miles they travelled with riders, or pulling wagons and carriages, the harsh weather conditions they have endured, and for many, the unkind treatment, neglect, indifference, and pain they have experienced at the hands of humans. I felt my heart open, and I began to thank the horses as I pulled my load. I thanked them for all they have done to make our lives easier, for the fun and adventure they provide for us, for the joy they bring, for all they have endured, for their hard work, patience, determination, for their losses, and their willingness. The horses watched me as I pulled the load, and began to jump and play in obvious anticipation of the treat bowls they knew were coming shortly. I told them that I felt blessed to be in service to them now, and that I would always do my best to provide for them, in a way that is as natural and comfortable for them as I can. I thanked them for being patient and gentle with me over the years as I’ve learned to care and provide for them, for the many mistakes I’ve made along the way, and for the lessons they have taught me. I honoured them for their service and the service of their ancestors. I apologized for all we have taken from them; their wild spaces, their freedom, their babies, their family members, their herd mates. I apologized for the ways we have trained them, using pain, fear, power, control, intimidation, and harsh equipment. Then I thanked them again for helping us “wake up” to a new way of being with horses, for the many ways they continue to be in service, in coaching and therapy, sport, pleasure, work, and as our beloved companions. I promised them that I would continue to learn, to be better at caring for them, to treat them with respect and appreciation, to ask permission, to pay attention, to honour their needs, to offer them choices, to share what I learn with others, and to support in any way I can, the many courageous people out there who are caring for horses in desperate situations, nurturing and rehabilitating these beautiful animals, while discovering their own hearts are healing too. I got close to the barn but wasn’t able to pull the sleigh up over a snowbank, and didn’t want to risk breaking the rope again, so I brought the feed bins, which thankfully are on wheels, out to the sleigh. Then, the hardest part for me is always lifting the bags out of the sleigh on the ground and hoisting them into the bins. I asked the horses for their service once again and said “please help me find the strength to lift these bags up and into the bins”. Sure enough I managed each bag with relative ease! I truly appreciate horse power! Carol Marriott www.ravenheartfarms.com Jan.-29-14