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Monday, June 28, 2021

Where the Fairies Dance

Our farm and wildflower border along the road

Some of you may feel as if you live on the far side of the moon, or the sun, if you're cooking under 110 degree heat. I melt when the thermometer hits 80 and the humidity soars. This week temperatures will rise into the 90's. Living in the lovely Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, which reminds me of The Shire (The Lord of the Rings), we are spared the worst of summer--usually. The amount of heat we get zapped with is plenty for me. I'm a spring and fall junkie because I love the cooler temps, infinite blue skies, and welcome the much needed rain. Our part of the valley tends to be dry, but our farm has a deep well and I drag the hose around to water. It's a lot of work, though. Not that I'm one to complain. 

We've had a splendid June this year. To venture forth outside in the early morning is pure joy. The garden reveals fresh wonders no matter how often I go there. Even if the earth is parched, beads of dew sparkle on the glistening leaves like tiny jewels. Morning makes all things new. 

I'm incredibly fortunate to be surrounded by this mini Eden and gratified to help bring it to life. I also give nature and our creator, God, quite a bit of the credit.  

As I reluctantly bid early summer adieu and brace myself for hot July, I will seek the beauty. And keep watch for fairies.

June Roses

"Our love of outdoor life is hereditary; Adam was a gardener. ~Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy, The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor

My little bit of earth in the front garden is one of the places that I find my bearings. The rhythm of my day begins with a cup of coffee and a little bit of weeding or dreaming. ~Betsy CaƱas Garmon,

Everything, from kings to cabbages, needs a root in the soil somewhere. ~Woods Hutchinson, A.M., M.D. (1862–1930)

Plants give us oxygen for the lungs and for the soul. ~Terri Guillemets

I sit in my garden, gazing upon a beauty that cannot gaze upon itself. And I find sufficient purpose for my day. ~Robert Brault,

And with that, I agree.

The garden is a magical place. God walks the garden at dusk and the fairies dance at dawn. 

*** Images of my June garden. 

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

JUNE - Making Me Scurry Along!

by Judy Ann Davis

Do you ever feel overwhelmed? For some reason, this month, I have the feeling that the end of the day comes too quickly, and the tasks I’d hoped to accomplish are too many. Everywhere I turn, there is something that needs my attention.

Bucket Garden
Spring arrived too quickly in Central Pennsylvania. The weather was balmy and sunny. The patio furniture cried out to be cleaned and set up. There were weeds in the flowerbeds. My bucket garden had to be planted, and my blueberry bushes needed extra care. I'm also nursing a crop of milkweed to try to entice monarch butterflies. Recently, my husband and I decided to remove all the overgrown shrubs in the front of our house and replace them with new ones. I’m now on a first name basis with the owners of all our area's garden and landscape centers.

June is almost at an end, and I have to admit I’ve barely touched my keyboard to write. Why? Because our town’s Bloom and Berry Bash Summer Festival is scheduled to be held on June 26th.  I’m scurrying around and collecting my paperback books, wood products I create, and my tent (with all its paraphernalia) to get ready for the celebration. On the sunny side, it should be a joy to see all the town folk after a year of cancelled events.

Am I writing? I’m chugging along with writing-related tasks. I took the 5-day Amazon Ad Challenge, and I’m learning to create Zon advertisements. I procured my copyrights to a western and am working to re-edit, obtain a new cover, and republish it both in digital and paperback. I’m also working on edits for a short novella targeted for the Christmas season. What do I really want to do? Write the third novel in the Ashmore Brothers (western) Series and hide from all the chores calling to me, like incessant sirens, to get them done.

How’s your summer progressing? Is it a relaxing one or are you in a frenzy? Drop me a comment and let me know I’m not alone during these lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer.  :)

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Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Summer Memories by Bea Tifton

Rain Trueax is in a non-Internet zone, so she has graciously allowed me to fill in.

Ahhh, summer in North Texas. That blistering heat that just sucks the life right out of me. I tend to do a reverse hibernation in summer because as an adult, I am prone to heat exhaustion. I stay inside, treasuring the fact that in the modern world we have air conditioning. The man who invented AC should have gotten a Nobel Prize.  Even running errands requires hydration and fortitude. But it wasn’t always that way. As a child, summer breaks were longer than they are now, and carefree. My mother didn’t overschedule us to death. We were allowed to roam, barefoot and half feral. By the end of the season, I could have stepped on a nail and it wouldn’t have gone through the tough soles of my feet. We would come in during the hottest part of the day and rest up to go out again as soon as the midafternoon heat lifted. 


When I was very young, we lived in East Texas along the banks of a beautiful lake. A creek ran past our house and we had a big yard. Ah, paradise. In my family, the words, “I’m bored” were forbidden. When one thing paled, we simply found something else to do. We had more freedom than children do now, albeit with a healthy dose of stranger danger just in case. We rode our bikes without helmets along the street or on bike paths children had worn through the pastures and vacant lots. If we had been very good and Mom was in a mellow mood, we were allowed to ride all the way to the Snap E Jack for some candy. I explored the creek and the lake, playing with ladybugs, turtles, and tadpoles. My sister and I would entice the occasional crayfish to come out of his hole by dangling bacon on a string. We always let them go, but they were such funny little creatures that we were fascinated by them. Minnows in the lake, caterpillars and cocoons on our plants, playing war with cattails; the world around me was my summer science lesson. My father patiently answered my questions why and how, occasionally referring me to our set of encyclopedias for answers. We swam to keep cool and roller skated without knee pads. 

 We moved to Florida when I was nine. We lived on a wooded lot surrounded by citrus groves. My friends and I would make pretend houses outside in their yard. We would get things no one wanted anymore, and furnish it with fascinating odds and ends.  It wasn’t wooded in their neighborhood, so not as many snakes.  And Florida has snakes. They would sun on the doors of our covered porch, so we would have to push it open and jump back, waiting for the snake to fall and slither sleepily and grumpily away. They would lurk in the palmetto bushes and drop down from the trees. I developed quite a phobia, but I never got bitten. We had an enclosed pool and I would spend hours swimming, pretending I was a mermaid.

When we moved to Texas suburbia, we lived close enough to an amusement park to get seasons passes. My mother would drop off a pair or a group of us, let us spend the day there, and pick us up again, hot, sunburned, smelly, tired, and happy. We would roller skate in my neighborhood for hours, down hills that scare me to death to think about it now, and we would ride my bike or shoot hoops at the nearby elementary school. 

It’s ironic that I spent so much time outside and now I hide in the comfortable, cool spaces in my house. But I have many great memories of summer. As hot as it was, a popsicle or a run through the sprinklers would cool us off. Then we were ready to go again, off into the world.

Do you have good memories of summer? Leave a comment below. 


Photo Attributes: 

Bare Feet: “Summer is Good for the Sole” G F Peck Visual Hunt

Turtle: Blake and Becca Visual Hunt

Ladybug: Carplips Visual Hunt

Mermaid: Annette Batiste Day

Roller Skating: “Children at a Roller Rink” Simpleinsomnia Visual Hunt

Popsicles: Jason Trumm Visual Hunt