Hulmet and Ross are a danger to anyone in sight. They may be my brother's friends, and he's starting to be more and more like them, but they enjoy tormenting me. They dubbed me prairie dog cowboy, think it's so funny.

But today they went too far. While Caleb and Mary are gone, this new state stuff, the twins and I are supposed to take Katie to school so Gramps won't have to. Craig and Cody think she's such a pest they wouldn't. I felt bad for Gramps and let Katie ride in front of me on Lady. Hulmet slapped Lady on the rump.

I couldn't stop Lady. She went wild. I've never seen her in such a panic. Katie was going to be hurt. I jumped off the horse and yanked her head back toward her shoulder. Lady stopped. I leaned against her, scared half to death. She or Katie could have been hurt. I'm thankful they weren't.


 
 

I sit watching the stars and moon against the darkness of the sky and wonder where I fit, where do I belong?

The Hymans all treat me like family, but I'm really not part of their family.

Pa tried to show me he loves me, the best he could, but since his stroke, all he does is stare at the ceiling.

Ma told me I'm only good for working. Jake and his friends treat me worse than scum, make fun of me. Of course Jake follows what he sees Ma do, and Hulmet and Ross like being mean.

Now Patch loves me, but he's a dog. He seems to understand me, though. When I go to the ranch, I hate to leave him behind at the farm. If I had my own place, I'd take him with me.

I just want to belong somewhere.

 
 

Mary and Caleb went to Guthrie to witness the "marriage" of Indian Territory to Oklahoma Territory. Sounds silly to me, but guess the fact that we're now in a new state is historical and important.

When they got home, finally, Mary told us that we had lived through through history and someday we would realize it.

Huh? The fact that we now live in a state rather than in No Man's Land or the Oklahoma Territory won't make any difference to someone like me. I'm more worried about having a future.

 
I don't matter 12/11/2008
 

I'm trying not to feel sorry for myself. I do have much to give thanks for, but why can't Ma love me, at least like me? I try to do what she wants. I worked all weekend to do the planting, and I had to have some bread for supper when I came in after dark.

I don't understand.

But I'm working on the ranch, living with Caleb's family. Craig and Cody and I share a room. That is all good. They make me warm inside.

Of course Katie can be a pest sometimes.


 
 

When I visit Cody and Craig, their ma teaches me along with them and Katie. She was a teacher. Caleb's ma was a teacher, too. Neither Mary or Gram put up with us using "lazy" language.I guess they care because they care for me.

But, I'm not griping, 'cause having someone care sure feels good.
I don't know why Ma doesn't like me, but she doesn't. I'm lucky that Caleb and his family does.

When we have times to be thankful for God did for us, Caleb, Mary, Craig, Cody, Gramps, and Gram, and, yes, even Katie are on the top of my list.


 
 

I finally did it, after years of trying, I roped a prairie dog, but it's all ruined.

Jake's friends, Hulmet and Ross, were riding by when I lassoed the thing. They laughed at me, called me a prairie dog cowboy. I, I put my rope away. I don't think I'll try roping any more.

But I didn't let them see me cry.

 
I got friends 12/08/2008
 

Caleb and his wife Mary and twins came by. Now I got friends, Cody and Craig. Caleb helped me learn to rope, too, gave me a lariat  to keep.

But now I got ta learn to lasso them pesky prairie dogs, and Caleb will let me cowboy for him.

 
 

I kant write good but somethin happened today. Mr. Hyman, tolded me to call him Caleb, comed by. He promise to let me cowboy for him if'n I kin rope a prairie dog.

 

    Facing a hard life

    Buddy Roberts, born in 1894 in what is now the Oklahoma Panhandle, didn't know anything but hard work and a hard life from the time he could remember.

    Homesteading and ranching was difficult in those days, more so than now.

    However, Buddy wanted to be a cowboy, and he worked to meet that goal as he helped with his parents' farm that they homesteaded.

     
    Neighbor and rancher Caleb Hyman saw the inner Buddy and encouraged him to become the honorable boy and man he could be.

    The Hyman family, including Caleb's wife Mary, twins Cody and Craig drew Buddy into their family. The twins' "little" sister laid claim to Buddy as hers. The elder Hymans, Gramps and Gram, treated Buddy as one of their grandchildren.

    At "home," the boy was a strong back to do work. At the Hyman Ranch, he was family.

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