Sunday, April 27, 2008

Sheila's New Home

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John and Aaron Jr riding Sheila.

It has been awhile. Aaron Jr and I went out of town, but we are back. I will post photos from our trip next time.
This time, I wanted to post the photos I took at Sheila's new home. Sheila is Aaron's horse. Her name is actually pronounced 'Shayla'. Aaron heard that name in Brazil while he was serving there and really liked it, so that is why he told me he wanted to name the horse Sheila. Anyhow, when Aaron passed away at the end of November, Sheila was living at Aaron's friend Brandon's house. After Aaron passed away, that is when I needed to figure out where Sheila should go and that is when I asked my brother in law, John, to take her. He and Aaron always talked about him getting a horse and them being able to go horseback riding together more often... so it made sense to me for John and his family to take Sheila. I also wanted Aaron Jr to be able to ride her, so it is perfect. I hope John and Lisa and their family know how grateful I am to them. It is a blessing that they agreed to take her and take on the huge responsibility of having a horse. I know Aaron is grateful as well.
Anyhow, a few weeks after Aaron passed away, Aaron's friend Dan and John went down to Brandon's house, picked up Sheila and brought her up to Dan's place. He also has horses and he agreed to let Sheila live there for the time being until John had another place ready for Sheila to go. The photos I posted a couple months ago of the horse were taken at Dan's place. Thank you Brandon and Dan for the help you have been. John's sister and her family have property in the next town over and they have a barn and a pasture where John wanted to put Sheila. So John went over and helped get a fence repaired so that he could move Sheila over there. A couple weeks ago, he was finally able to bring Sheila to her new home. So these photos are taken at John's sister's place and it is a beautiful place. She has space and a great shelter to get out of the weather. She seems happy there.
Thank you again John and Lisa. I am so grateful to you.



Aaron watching with anticipation for his next ride on the horse.


Aaron riding Sheila with um... one of John and Lisa's twins. I still can't tell them apart very well. Sorry twin. Hopefully your mom can help me out with this.


Top left: John's sister's little girl, Jane? with Caroline (John and Lisa's oldest) and John
Top right: Hannah and Elise (John and Lisa's twins) and John, Stella, and Aaron Jr.
Bottom left: John and Stella (John and Lisa's 4th daughter)
Bottom right: John's sister's little boy, Lewis? with Aaron Jr and John



Close ups of all of the kids riding in the photo above this one.
In the middle is Angus (John and Lisa's 5th child and only boy so far). He was sleeping most of the time in the car.



The left photo is a close up of the scar on Sheila's front leg. A few months after Aaron got Sheila, he was riding her and I think she got cut on a barbed wire fence. Whoever was riding with Aaron that day should let me know the details again since I am not remembering very clearly. Anyhow, for the next while, Aaron had to go and clean the wound, put this strange ointment on it and wrap it every single night. I went a couple of times with him and he took great care of her. He was worried about infection and I think he was successful to avoid any infection in her wound. He loved Sheila and I am positive that she loved him.
The next photo is of Aaron Jr's boot. I got these at a second hand store because he had grown out of his others and he was going to be a cowboy for Halloween again. So, I went hoping to find some, and these were there... for $3.00. It was a bargain. I got them home and hoped they were nice ones so that Aaron liked them. When he saw them, he said that if they were adult boots, he would wear them because he thought they were great ones. I felt proud.
The bottom photo is of Aaron's bridle and reins and bit. This bridle matches his saddle that I have here with me at my parent's house.



I wanted a photo of Aaron Jr on Sheila with his cowboy hat on. Well, he decided it was a game and he kept taking it off once John stepped away. So, I never got one of Sheila AND Aaron Jr alone with his hat on... but oh well.
It cracks me up that John is in shorts and cowboy boots. Aaron's mom tells us all the time about how Aaron would wear shorts and cowboy boots ALL the time when he was little. I will have to find a photo and post it.



I did get this one closer up without Sheila in the shot though.




Watching Sheila eat. He was fascinated.




Saying goodbye.


Aaron Jr is in this phase of blowing a kiss to most people when he says goodbye to them, so this is Sheila's kiss goodbye.

These next two photos were taken in September 2006. We were on our way home from a wedding and we stopped by to see Sheila.



This is the only time we took photos of me on Sheila.


This photo is the only photo we have of both of my Aarons with Sheila. It isn't a great photo since the sun was setting, but I am grateful to have at least this one. It is one of those things that makes you wish you had taken even more photos.


This photo was taken November 2004 soon after Aaron got Sheila. He is riding Sheila and I am riding his friend Justin's horse. I remember watching Aaron ride Sheila at full speed this particular day. It was my first time seeing Aaron do that and I have to say... I was AMAZED. I had never seen anyone ride a horse that fast in real life. I was in awe of him and his skills. I never rode a horse at full speed. I remember when Aaron and I were riding horses together in Moab once and he started running with his horse, so my horse ran as well and I was scared and thrilled at the same time. We weren't even going as fast as he was on this day. I loved watching him with horses, he loved them and knew so much about them. I still remember the first time I saw Sheila. I was so excited. I thought she was so beautiful. I have always loved dark brown horses. Ode is between us in this photo. I often wonder how Aaron's animals are feeling wondering why he has been absent from their lives for so long now. I really feel sorrow for them. I am sure they are missing him like we are. We miss him so much.

I am missing you, my cowboy...

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(thanks to Aaron's friend, Justin, for that last photo of Aaron and me on horses with Ode)

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Glad you are back, Leslie. I just came to check on you before bed, and here you are.

What beautiful photos of your little cowboy...and your big one.

Thinking of you.

Love,

Jane

Liz said...

You need to call me I want to know how things went. Once again beautiful pictures as always.

dani said...

the pictures are beautiful especially the ones of aaron jr. watching sheila eat...
i am so glad you were out of town. i was worried about you. isn't it funny how when you blog you feel like you know the people with whom you blog and you have a real vested interest in their lives, respectfully.
i haven't even blogged with you long; but i still felt the need to check in on you each day. when you had no post, i truly became worried about you.
take care, leslie!!!
love and blessings,
dani xx

dani said...

no, thank you, needed you sweet hearted soul!!! but you are very welcome:)
l,
d xx

LL said...

HOORAY--you're back!
I too had worried, wondering where you were.
LOVED the pics of AJ with the horse, adorable!!!

Matchbox Mom said...

AWWW!!! You are such a cute Mom! I love the picture of 'the aaron's' with the sun setting! I think it is beautiful!
I'm glad you were just out of town, too! I swear i'm not stalking you, just got worried! haha
We have cute cowboys at our house too...and they wear their shorts with their boots too!! How funny.
Hope you are doing well...give that little man a big hug and kiss!
Still praying for you and your adoreable family.

Joann said...

I was so happy to see that you had posted again! I really love when you do! I really enjoyed this post. I remember when Aaron and Austin went to Oklahoma to get their horses. Justin was very excited for Aaron to have a horse so they could ride together. I am also glad that while we were living down in Orem, they got to ride a few times together. Didn't they go hunting with them, too. I know they had good times whenever they rode. Justin will have to give you those stories! Just for the record, my favorite picture is the side view of Aaron Jr. petting Sheila while she's eating! I can totally see big Aaron doing the exact thing! Thank you Leslie!

Mindy said...

Sheila is such a beautiful horse! I am glad she could have a good home, and that Aaron Jr. will be able to know her. Brandon has found most of our boys' boots at DI! We have a couple of pairs that look almost just like that. We store them all lined up on a barnwood shelf in the boys' room. (Except the pairs that fit them at the moment.) Aaron Jr. is such a cute little cowboy!

Vicki said...

I love your pictures, Leslie! Especially the close-up one of Aaron Jr. smiling. So cute! :-) Thinking of you and praying for you every day! Love you lots!

E and T said...

Hi Leslie

I am so happy to see that you have posted again. I have missed your posts and hearing from you.

What beautiful photos you have shared in this blog entry. I love that very first one of Aaron Jnr with his cowboy hat and checked shirt - a real little cowboy!

Isn't it always the way. When you desperately want a particular photo (ie Aaron Jnr with his cowboy hat on Sheila) it just doesn't seem to happen for one reason or another. The picture with John in it still captures the moment and you will always have the story to tell about this photo.

What a precious photo you have of your two Aarons and Sheila. This reminds me to make sure I capture all special moments, never let an opportunity pass by, so we have a record of our special family times.

You continue to be in my prayers and thoughts.

Love to you
Elise.

Alesha said...

Leslie,

Thanks for your comment on my blog. I really enjoy reading yours. It gives me some perspective. I'm sure you don't feel like you have it all together at all. None of us do. Everyone is just doing their best to go along, hoping it is "enough." I pray that as the days go on, the pain will become less raw and the memories will stay vivid. I think it's great you have a lot of these memories written down in your blog to read later on. Thanks again for your kind words.

Alesha

Everyday's a Holiday! said...

I am so jealous you have a horse! How fun, you can see how much Aaron jr. loves it! What fun memories you are making for him! It was probably really good for you to get away! You should do it more often and even come to CA!!!!!! we would love it! and Aaron Jr. and my son Crew would get on like long time friends!

April said...

I'm sad that Dave and I never got to go horse-back riding with Aaron. I'm glad that Sheila has a good home now and that little Aaron can see him often.

Valeri said...

Beautiful pictures, as usual. You are a gifted photographer, that's for sure. I hope you're doing okay. We think about you every day, and continue to pray for you and little Aaron. Let us know if you need ANYTHING!

K&K&kids said...

Such cute pictures! That is nice that John is able to keep the horse close enough for you and Aaron Jr. to visit often. Aaron Jr. is so photogenic...even if he isn't cooperative. What 2 year old is? CUTE boy!

Kristi said...

I like hearing the history of something that was so special to Aaron and am glad to see Sheila around where Aaron can still see her and love her as Aaron would have.