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It’s that time of year again when the Golden Girls are shedding out. Their thick winter coats are coming off in handfuls. Every day we brush and comb and brush some more and still the ground is littered with clumps of brown or reddish hair, depending on who’s getting the combing.


It’s going to take a bit more time for the girls to get their sleek summer coats. And since it is Colorado, this slow process seems perfect. We could still have another snowstorm, though I’m crossing my fingers that we don’t. Rain will do nicely from now on to get that much-needed moisture we all talk about.


This process of shedding the old to make way for the new is so concrete when it refers to the progression from winter to summer haircoat. But it also makes me think about what I could be shedding, which isn’t nearly so concrete or accessible. Sometimes I wish I could simply shed into a new skin, or coat of hair. Every season a new me.


Off with the old – in with the new.


Sounds easy enough, but you and I both know it isn’t. The “old” is hard to let go of. It’s familiar, maybe even comforting. And the “new” is unknown. Unfamiliar. Maybe even a little scary. And yet, like it or not, it seems to be coming. How ridiculous would it be to continue walking around in the middle of summer with a thick coat of hair?

Not only ridiculous, it would be uncomfortably hot.


(I know I’m switching wildly between horses and humans, Work with me on this. Okay?)


So one place I know I could do with a bit of shedding is my closet. It has gotten, shall we say, a little overgrown? Yes let’s just name it: my closet is a mess. There are most definitely things I could shed. As I pick through the contenders, I wonder why I am hanging on to pants that don’t fit, things I don’t like, and one or two things that have simply done their time. They are tired and worn out.

Time to shed!

I’d like my closet to be the human version of Pepper and Chickadee’s coat closet. You can see it pictured above. Neat and tidy. And spare. I like that. It gives me breathing room just to look at it.


So that’s what I’m heading for in my head and my closet. As for the Golden Girls, they’ll be slick and shiny soon enough.


What could do with a bit of shedding in your world?



I’m taking a leap here to even mention the word spring, but all reports tell me the nice weather is on the way.

This weekend.

Seventies, they say.

Now Pepper knows all about that warming trend, and she doesn’t ever listen to the weather forecasters.

She has her own finely tuned system encoded in her DNA.

So spring in the pasture means two things:




And it seems we’re well into both.

Pepper is shedding out with abandon.

I suggested she hold on to a bit of that hair when the previous snow was on the way, but by that time, the process was rolling along.

Every day we get handful after handful of hair from our girl.

She’s going to slick out and be gorgeous.


When I look at all those globs of old, dry hair on the ground around Pepper, it reminds me of new starts. Every year she essentially starts over.

In the natural world, many animals have an annual routine of shedding the old and beginning anew.

I think I like that.

It makes me wonder what I’m holding on to that I could shed.

Lighten my emotinal load.

Or my physical load for that matter.


If it were as simple as brushing out the old and welcoming the new, what would you shed this season?

P.S. I think it is exactly that simple!

I thought you might like to know what horses do for fun in the spring.

Any guesses?

I’ll save you the trouble of coming up with an answer.

They shed.

Big time.

All that nice fluffy hair that keeps them warm in the winter needs to vamoose. Get goin’. Be gone.

Invariably, those are the days I forget and wear white or yellow or light pink to the pasture.

After all these years, you’d think I’d get this. But, I don’t.

This is coming from a woman who took a light pink sweatshirt on a weeklong river trip in Utah. All I can say is it wasn’t so light or pink by the end of the trip.

Pepper sheds out quicker than Bud. All that dark hair flies everywhere and sticks to me. She does look nice when it’s over. Pepper only has a few longish hairs on her tummy. And they’ll be gone soon. She’s sleek as a racehorse.

Bud sheds much slower. He has Cushing’s Disease which causes him to hang on to his hair. I’ll tell you more about that another time, when I finally understand it.

Just know, he’s still a bit hairy, though not as bad as some years when he looked more like a wooly mammoth than an appaloosa.

Sorry Bud, but it’s true.

As for me, I’m sure glad I have a good washer. Maybe I’ll buy a grey sweatshirt.

Then again, where’s fun in that?



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