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My Summer So Far--July 19, 2011

My summer has been flying by...seems like only a few weeks ago that we finished with school and yet here it is nearly August! It's been a great summer though, full of lots of hard work but good times too, and I wanted to share a few of the highlights with you all!

Highlight #1: Beka's Home!
Yay...Beka got back from her first year of college! She was much missed throughout the long winter months so we were all so happy to have our sweet and spunky sister back with us!

Highlight #2: Mother's Day
We had a really fun Mother's Day celebration complete with our yearly trip to the greenhouse. We also took advantage of the fact that all five of us were gathered to take some super fun (and super silly) pictures together!

Highlight #3: Cement Pour
Okay...this was a highlight for some, and just plain hard work for others! Either way, we cemented the floor of our cow pen this summer, which was a big job and lots and lots and lots of work!! (Maybe you can guess which category I fall into about the highlight vs. hard work thing??)

Highlight #4: Joey's Visit & Memorial Day
My amazing boyfriend dropped in for a visit at the end of his school year and we had a fantastic time together, even though we spent most of our time together picking strawberries. Joey also helped out with everything else going on around here, including fixing a stubborn old tiller that took two days of his visit to get working. He was visiting over Memorial Day and Matthew, his girlfriend Esther, and her little sister Lydia came over for a great day with us! We all enjoyed it so much. In the afternoon we had a crazy and vicious water balloon fight that was thoroughly enjoyed by all and got some of us thoroughly wet!!
(Mental Note: Never participate in a water fight when my boyfriend is visiting....)

Highlight #5: Strawberry Season
Here's another item that's a questionable highlight...again I say it's more hard work than highlight! We spent many many hours in the strawberry patch this summer despite the fact that the harvest was poor. And I'm not sure why in the world Beka and I are laughing in the picture below...trust me; it wasn't nearly that much fun!!

Highlight #6: 4th of July
Now this one was an undisputed highlight! We had a fabulously fun party on the 4th of July with friends and family! Beka and I had a good time getting the house ready for it as the wild daylilies that grow in abundance around here were in full bloom and we picked an enormous number of them with which to decorate the house. The party was loads of fun with lots of food and fellowship and games late into the night!

Highlight #7: Summer Good Times
The rest of the highlights of my summer so far have been smaller ones like breaks in the shade with the dogs, songs on the front porch, late-night swims, and the unbeatable prairie summer sunsets.....


Catching Up--April 25, 2011

Wow, it's hard to believe that the last time I updated this it was the end of January! The intermittent months have been busy ones, and have flown by. Last time I wrote here we were buried under a few feet of snow...but somewhere between then and now winter melted away unobtrusively and spring burst upon us about a month early!

Now all of the sudden the grass is green and lush, trees are blooming, asparagus is popping up all over the place in the garden, and the lilac bushes are right on the verge of their fragrant debut.

Due to the early arrival of warm weather, the spring planting was accomplished way earlier than normal; which was a good thing because it has done nothing but rain here for about the last three weeks, making us all glad the seeds were in the ground before the garden became half an acre of mud.

Tim and Caleb have been pitching in with garden-related activites more than usual this spring, helping to fill the gap left by Beka's absence. In the pictures below they are mulching and watering mulberry trees. (Or perhaps it might be more accurate to say that that is what they are supposed to be doing, as in reality, they are teasing a friendly cat and cracking silly grins for the camera...ahem...)

It definitely has been a nice spring this year so far; other than the afore-mentioned three weeks of rain, the weather has generally been sunny and quite mild! Perfect for a nice relaxed snooze in the sun, right Jack?
My feelings exactly.

But when the rain does fall and the sun dissapears into a gray sky, things aren't all that bad either. Tim and Caleb find the long evenings the perfect time to share a bed, the warmth of a blanket, and a good book or two. (That is, on the rare occasions when they can resist pushing each other off the bed every thirty seconds.)

So things are pretty normal around here for this time of year. Lots of rain mixed with bursts of sunshine;
long, busy days where we work until dark and we're all exhausted, balanced by days where the most pressing thing that needs to be done is the cleaning of an obscure cupboard; mud, mud, and more mud, with bright spring flowers to cheer things up.

Pleasant contrasts, lots of variety...I love spring!

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