Staying Grounded

Staying Grounded
Karen Pickering

Spending Time at Home Encourages Reflection

I have had much time to think about what’s really important in my life. Naturally, my horses are at the top of the list (and keeping cool). Wow has our Pacific Northwest weather ever been hot. We just purchased a 2nd A/C unit to keep our house cool and I’m going out twice a day to hose the horses down just to give them some relief. I’m actually happy to be inside working in the office today.

I’ve spent a great deal of time at home this year. Mark’s illness has changed our lives dramatically. The other day we were both super frustrated with stuff; doctors, pharmacy, anything to do with his medical. Mark turns to me and says, “I just want normal again.” All I could say was “me too.” The adjustment to our new reality has been overwhelming but we’re 6 months into this journey and I can be grateful I have the magazine. While I’m way behind in my work and my office looks like a tornado hit, I have the flexibility to work around my husband’s doctor appointments and procedures.

Enjoying time with my horse at Bolender Horse Park

Enjoying time with my horse at Bolender Horse Park

Our new reality has given us great pause to consider what matters most. I have been selling everything we possible can and it’s actually been rewarding to “purge” our lives of unnecessary things and start looking toward making life simple. I have found pockets of time that were previously wasted and put it to good use. My horses haven’t seen much work but just caring for them makes me grateful they are in my life.

While we’re finding our way in the “new normal” I’ve discovered that taking my mind off our situation has given way to more joy in doing the sometimes mundane tasks like mowing the lawn. While I desperately miss my weekend outings it feels good to relax in the shade of the cherry tree and watch the horses graze. My living quarter is ready to go on a moment’s notice and also provides assurance that once again I’ll get out with my friends.

I’m truly glad to take a break and stay at home this summer. Last summer was so unbelievably awesome that I can handle being quiet for a short time. Trust me….I’ll be out again and ready to catch up with all the fun things my horsey friends have been doing. Please keep hydrated in this heat and be sure your horses and other critters have plenty of water and shade. We’re not use to this heat!

Looking forward to seeing everyone on the trail or at an event again!


Quote: “We become happier, much happier, when we realize life is an opportunity rather than an obligation.” ~ Mary Augustine

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Karen Pickering

Owner/Publisher Karen’s lifelong love of horses began at a very early age when she wore out a couple of rocking horses before convincing her parents to get her the real thing. That ill-tempered bay gelding, Brandy, was a challenge for the young horsewoman, but it drove her ambition to become a horse trainer. After attending Canyonview Equestrian College’s Horsemanship Program, Karen realized she needed work that was a little more lucrative than training, so she took a job with Customs Brokerage to pay the bills. There, she discovered an affinity for computers and a talent for creating informative, entertaining newsletters. The Northwest Horse Source began as such a letter in December 1995, with a distribution of 1000 copies for its 12 black and white pages. Since then, it has grown into beautiful, all-gloss magazine with the largest coverage of any free equine publication in the Northwest – a distribution of over 16,500 copies and over 600 locations monthly. Not bad for the results of one woman’s dream to work with horses!

Today, Karen remains involved with every aspect of the magazine and treasures the community of thousands who share a common passion. Somewhere in the wee hours of the early mornings and late evenings, she still finds time to care for April, her gorgeous and sweet-tempered Quarter Horse.

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