Annie's sister owns a ranch in Kentucky. She runs it with her husband, daughters & son. They have the largest Thoroughbred & Clydesdale program in Kentucky. Now Annie's sister is in Glenoak. Will the family head to Kentucky for the summer? Will Ruthie be able to ride horses again? And how does Annie react to her 18-year-old niece having a child, being married, and living in a small cabin on the ranch? Will the family be surprised that Annie has a sister & nieces & nephews? Is she Annie's real sister? Or a best friend that became like family? Will Annie be able to reconnect with her?
A pact was made while we were in high school where we would always be sisters, no matter what came between us. Whether it be land or water, family or job, the pact stayed the same. Annie and I always said that we would be there for each other and that when the time was right, we would call on each other and one of us would travel to see the other. But I guess life has a way of getting in the way of plans; especially well planned plans.
Annie and I were inseparable during those four years of high school. She seemed to know what she wanted to do even though we were only fourteen when we made the pact. Pact or no pact, we were going to be there for each other no matter what. We had the same classes, the same lunch time; we even had the same Driver's Ed teacher. We got our licenses together and got even though I was able to get my own car on my sixteenth birthday, she never held it against me. She loved that even though she had her license, she didn't have to drive anywhere.
Growing up in Arizona was the best years of our lives. Living on a horse farm always insured that we would go riding everyday after we did our homework and chores. Annie was always over at the farm, helping out whenever she could find the time. Not only were we the best of friends, but our parents' even hung out together; going to the same book clubs, same restaurants and even headed out to the movies together. I guess growing up in the kind of luxury I did, I didn't understand how Annie felt when she said that she needed some time to think about what she wanted to do.
We drifted apart that last summer after we graduated, but somehow I figured we would see each other again. And my hunch was right, but we'll get to that later. Annie went off to college in California after that summer and I went to college in Kentucky where I met and fell in love with my husband. Life just spun way out of control within the first few weeks of my graduating college and then getting married to my husband. Life has a way of changing well planned out plans, that's for sure.
I walked outside to go feed the horses and help in the barn. Our ranch hands were very capable but since I loved horses and had grown up with them my whole life, I figured that they didn't have to do all the work. Besides, my kids were out working right beside me as well. In the twelve years since I graduated top of my class from Veterinary School (College) I'd gotten married, had six kids and become a grandmother. Life was definitely spinning out of control, well sort of.
To date, all of the 4,000 acres of land that housed our Horse Ranch and Sanctuary was occupied. Not only were there tame horses living on the Ranch, but also wild mustangs as well. Of all the kids I'd had, only one of them had made a mistake early in her life. But she was keeping to the promise she made both her father and I. The boy took charge of the mistake as well and we built them a small cabin on the land where they could live for the time being until they decided to move or what not.
The kids are as follows:
Henrietta Jacobson-Smith: The oldest of the children; 18, has a daughter and is married. Is going to the local community college and live on the ranch in a small one story cabin built to house her family; loves photography.
Josh Jacobson: The only son in the family; 16, wants to become a veterinary like his mother; plans on living on the Ranch and working with his parents; twin of Samantha.
Samantha Jacobson: 16, twin of Josh and third oldest in the family; wants to become a teacher when she graduates college.
Sarah Jacobson: 14, likes photography; wants to become a professional photojournalist when she gets older.
Harley Jacobson: 10, likes riding horses; wants to become a professional rodeo girl like her uncle on her father's side.
Coral Jacobson: The youngest in the family at eight; likes writing stories.
Jonathan Smith: Henrietta's husband; going to the local community college to become a teacher.
Lolita Smith: Henrietta and Jonathan's two-year-old daughter.
Life was complicated with as many kids as we had running through the house but I got used to it. The kids had all gotten the week before summer vacation off due to the fact that we were headed out west to California for a big Rodeo and Horse show and most of our horses were going to be featured in the show. With four of my kids riding in the rodeo and show, we had to make sure that all the horses got to California alright which meant we were driving all the way out there.
We would be stopping over in Glenoak and then the Horse show was just one town over. Hopefully we could all make it there without any big incident occurring while traveling over there. Hopefully…