Tag Archives: Seasons

Sunny Day Work

Growing up on a farm had advantages. (Also disadvantages, but we’ll save those for another time.)

We raised dairy cows. Cattle have a large appetite. And since Wisconsin has a season called WINTER, much of the year hay was included in their diet. Raking was one of the jobs I was frequently given during haying season. (Beginning in late June and continuing to two, sometimes three cuttings.)

My father, or sometimes an older brother, would mow the alfalfa (or clover) and it would dry as it laid in the field for one, two, or three days. They I would be assigned to rake it. It one of these:

This was a job for sunny days. I’d drive the tractor and putt along the field from one end to the other, the rake swishing the hay into a long, loose windrow ready for the baler. A large straw hat, long sleeves, and long pants protected me from the hazard of sunburn. Bumping over gopher holes made me thankful for a padded seat. But it was fun! Time to think. Sing. Daydream about the future.

Did you have a favorite chore or job while growing up?


Ready for Dipping

St. Louis has a weather reputation which it shares with large portions of the American Midwest.

Four seasons. Some years it feels like five or six. They’ve been known to crowd three into a single day. An allotment of three (maybe four) perfect weather days per year.

It’s currently summer. Early sunrise. Late sunset. Hot and sunny in daylight. Warm and humid in the dark. Residents learn to cope. Fans. Air conditioning. Shade. Water.

The quiet time between sunrise and opening.

Summer Seating

Walking is good for your health.

Standing can make a person tired.

So have a seat. My summer seating on the patio is simple, utilitarian.

It’s very weather dependent. On the warmer days I’ll only be out here early in the morning. Evening would be nice — but lighting gets to be a problem if I wait too late.

Chair and table are the basics. If I’m working add a laptop, pen and notebook. If it’s more leisure time, add a book. And always — a beverage on the table. Mornings are for coffee. On the three perfect days St. Louis is allowed per year – the afternoon brings out the ice water. And later, you’ll find an adult beverage in my glass.

Ready for work or leisure.                                                                                    Distractions include dashing chipmunks and acrobatic squirrels.

Book Season?

Actually, in my mind, book season is 365 days each year.

Writers and readers do have seasonal conferences, luncheons, and events. And the season is starting.

Are you a writer? Have you scoped out the conferences or workshops in your area? Don’t know where to start? Check in your local library for any sort of writing magazine — they often have advertisements and listings of popular, reoccuring events. Another good source is the web page of writers groups.

Are you a reader? Spring, summer, and fall are popular times for reader events. Meet new authors. Browse book tables. Get filled with the “new book” smell. Find other readers — you may find new friends among them.

Meet the author, pick up your coaster, and touch the books at               GatewayCon in St. Louis. June 16-18.  Free admission for readers.

Shy Bunny

Easter Day is over. But the spirit of spring continues.

Nature sprouts and shouts joy at the longer days and warmer temperatures. Colorful blossoms pop in both expected and unusual places.

And the people in charge of the artificial flower displays – in this case an indoor decoration at a church – prove they have a sense of humor.

This shy bunny makes children of all ages look twice to find him.

24 Hour Difference

Events happen fast. Good ones as well as the questionable experiences.

For example: last weekend. We had two beautiful, warm days without rain. Like hundreds of others, I paid a visit to the home improvement store. They were still adding items to the garden center while customers were loading up on some of the preliminary items – tools, patio blocks, paint, and outdoor furniture.

My own purchase — a new hose — fit right into the mix.

Clean out the old leaves and debris of the winter. Assess what will fit in the empty spaces between the living perennials. Plant the shepherd’s hook will the ground is soft. Figure out the hanging basket portion next week — or the week after. Check the current plants – azelea buds are looking good.

From bud to blossom.

The call to spend more time out of doors.

Spring Promise

Spring. Hope. New beginnings.

When gardeners young, old, amateur, professional, talented, and uncoordinated share dreams of bright flowers on hardy stems and vegetables forming and ripening before their eyes.

It’s early for most of us to go out and “play in the dirt” here. But I found a community garden which with the aid of plastic over hoops (now removed) gave these beauties a head start.

The race is on! Quick start garden. Now to keep the hungry rabbits away.


Versatility from the Vine

Delicious as a snack.  Healthful for dessert.  Foundation for a drink.

Today’s fall fruit can be enjoyed in many ways. In addition it adds a splash of color to the table.

This particular cluster went from the supermarket to my shopping cart to my home. Where, after the photo session, they were bathed and clipped into smaller portions for the pleasure of my taste buds.

What’s your favorite way to enjoy grapes? Do you have a special variety you seek out?




More than Pie

Autumn Harvest. It’s more than pumpkins.

Today we’ll focus on that versatile fruit — Apple.

You can eat them raw — for a healthy part of a brown bag lunch or snack. Have a knife at hand? You may want to slice them to share or dip in a caramel or sweet fruit dip.

A clever person could write an entire book on cooking them. Pie. Cobbler. Tart. Sauce. Butter. Baked. Fried. Cake.       Yum. Yum. Yum.

Don’t like your food crunchy? Try juice. Let it ferment to cider.

Whether you visit an orchard and pluck it from the tree or make your selection for a supermarket bin — enjoy the fruits of the season.



Splash and Babble

Sunny days become precious at this time of year. The afternoon warmth after a morning chill tends to attract a person to take advantage of the day.

Do you walk every day? This is a good time to abandon the treadmill and lift your spirits in a mild day. Whether you walk on a sidewalk or quiet street, a paved trail, or a rugged path, fill your lung with fresh air.

Listen to the noise of the trail. Is it street traffic? Geese collecting friends for a journey? Or the softer, alluring sound of moving water.