From the Publisher | November 2021

HRL Publisher Barbara Godwin on a once-in-a-lifetime ride in Versailles, France

It is the time of year again where we reflect on what we are thankful for…yet I started this letter with thoughts of another chaotic year, and how it has affected us all.

But no. I want to separate myself and HRL from all the negativity this past year has produced and hone in on the positive.

Because I am the luckiest person in the world.  

That thought is not based on being rich or living a life without ups and downs. I am not young or beautiful or financially abundant.  And I, like everyone else have experienced a year of uncertainty and sadness, feelings of despair and feelings of loss.

But yes – I have been blessed.  

Returning home one day, last week,  I stopped to open my automatic gate that is no longer automatic.  It was raining, I was tired, and I was a little put out by having to get out of the truck and push the gate open – and then get back in, drive through, get out of the truck again, and close it.

Earlier that same day I received a notification that someone in Haiti tried to hack my email account. I dropped my cell phone into the cat’s bowl of water. My checking account had two dollars.

But as I sat at that gate,  gazing into the woods through the raindrops sliding down the windshield, I started laughing.  Pure joy ran through my veins and a feeling of contentment warmed my mind, my body.

I am blessed! 

Why?  Because, through HRL, I have met some of the most amazing people in this world.  I have had the honor of associating with people across the globe as well as my own backyard.  I am privileged to live a life with horses and through them, my world keeps expanding. 

I am privileged to be a writer, to create, to photograph, and to share what I learn from others.  Because without others, without gaining knowledge, without being able to create, I would be deprived of living the life I want to live. In my eyes, I am one of the luckiest people alive!

I am privileged to have an HRL partner and Creative Developer like Cristina Miller who makes HRL materialize in a way that is amazing and who has supported my cause even when she had moments of doubts.

Yes, I am blessed. And I have friends and family, some no longer in my world, that have supported me even when they too had doubts. 

I am blessed and privileged to actually live my life.  Not just be alive.

And last, I have readers like you.  Because you are the center of HRL and the heart of what I am trying to create.  Without you, there would be no future.

Thank you.

May this Thanksgiving bring you joy and contentment.

Creative Director note: The privilege is mine, dear friend. This is one of the most unique and deeply fulfilling projects I’ve ever undertaken, and watching your tireless commitment to its growth is purely inspiring. I can only hope I’ll do the vision justice in the end. -CM

Image by Jill Wellington from Pixabay

Barb currently resides in Central Florida with her three horses; when she’s not writing or riding for HRL, she loves to read and travel.

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