Of all the things I most love to do, a solitary (well, except for the dogs) walk at dawn tops my list. And this morning as I was heading out, I realized I haven't shared my morning walks with you. So today, will you join me?
Summer has felt like a butterfly fluttering by, and I the child laughing and running and never quite catching it. But those are the best kind of summers. A lot of time spent with my family, and a lot of that time right here at home humble home.
So while cobwebs have been forming in my studio, and dust bunnies are collecting under my furniture, and weeds are growing in my flower beds, and the sounds of television are not even heard, I have been...
...on a 9-day mission trip to Montana, desolately beautiful Montana...
...playing lots of marathon Monopoly sessions (only one single game have i won so far. one.)...
...swimming under the hot sun and evening stars...
...making frequent trips into town to visit here and sometimes here...
...and then camping out in the kitchen, canning for the pantry...
...making homemade pizzas and guacamole...
...baking pies and pound cakes (still getting around to that homemade bread)...
(obviously trying to make up for all those years of being a lame cook and lazy baker)
...I have also been catching up on some reading...
...nursing an injured stray kitten back to health. meet henry...
...tending to our vegetable patch...
...canoeing the Red River and hiking the Big South Fork...
Well, I don't deserve a summer this good, but it's been just that. Really, really good.
How are you chasing summer? Post it on your blog and let me know...would love to know what your summer looks like so far.
Had an early-morning broom session this morning. I'm always up with the dawn, so many things to take care of. Went down to the barns to check my 'silly girls' (what we call our 23 plump egg-laying beauties) and saw my old faithful broom standing in the corner.
What is it about the swish of the broom? with each stroke sweeping out the cobwebs that have collected in my soul. The fresh air clearing up my cluttered thoughts and unscrambling the chaos in my head. Watch the sun stretch across the land..."good morning, merry sunshine".
The landscape has started greening itself more now. Within weeks it will be full, rich green everywhere I turn. But this sombre morning feels good right now, somehow it fits for this day...which I am now ready to begin.
The gold leaves from my front yard trees are all but gone now. And, again this year, I am wishing, wishing I had spent more time in that old chair, wrapped in a quilt, soaking in the warmth of the sun and the golden air under the trees. It's not too late to gather a few leaves to press between the pages of an old book. I can at least do that.
[The winner of the Paris goodies giveaway is Nanette. Nanette, I've contacted you via email and look forward to hearing from you. Thank you! to all 405 who dropped by. I read each of your words and, as always, cherish your friendship.]
My sweet feathered girls have been hard at work. And the rewards are beautiful (and very tasty). Fresh country eggs, like the ones the French use in their best pastries. And how fun that Carolyn spotted this vintage photo of a French girl with her hens while we were shopping at a flea market in Paris.
Oh and speaking of the flea markets in Paris. Sigh. So many, many things I had to pass up because they wouldn't fit in my suitcase. But I did bring home an impressive stash of small items I can't wait to display and use in my artwork. I'll share photos soon.
Hmm, I can't just share photos. That wouldn't be fair. I know, I'll put together a little sampler of some of the items and hold a giveaway for you. Next week perhaps? Right now I'm busy in the kitchen putting these lovely eggs to use baking cakes and breads for a church cake walk tomorrow.
I love country life.
A gorgeous autumn day to each of you, my dear friends.
(1) pumpkins straight from the field, like these brought over yesterday from the neighbor farm's teenage son. Great little business he's got going there (okay, I liked it better when their farmhand came by and told me to go get some pumpkins). And colors, so happy-orange, that still haven't been matched by any paints, pigments or dyes that I've seen.
(2) that golden hour, sometime around 5pm here, when the sun stretches her rays over the land for one last warm hug before saying good-night.
(3) a steamy hot pumpkin spice latte from Starbucks...one of life's little luxuries. had my first one of the season yesterday, the first of many.
(4) this is the first fall we've had our hens, but I know a new fall favorite will be watching these silly girls scurry about in the late afternoon catching their last little bug snacks while the light's still good.
(5) wide open windows, after a long sticky summer, feel like heaven.
oh well, that's enough from me. what about you? what do you love about the changing of the season?
I have another project or two for "Handmade from Home" in the works but need to take an intermission, what with so much going on around here. Been busy tending the vegetable patch, caring for the chicks, making strawberry jam, etc., etc., etc....what's keeping you busy lately?
Summer just buzzes with activity around here...what happened to those lazy days?
It's all fun though...just keep reminding me to appreciate it for what it is and know it won't last.
The good news? My hollyhocks are blooming. And I do appreciate them since a bad storm wiped out almost everything else last week.
Remember a couple of days ago, how I was talking about how Spring bringing so much life around here (and everywhere)...look what came our way yesterday!
...and about 28 of their sister chicks. My husband has been wanting chickens for a while and I finally jumped on board. And now am in love with my sweet little girls. No, no boys. We just wanted the egg layers (seriously, you thought I could raise chicks to eat? me?! you know I'll have them all named with ribbons around their necks or something silly like that). These girlies will provide plenty of eggs for us and others beginning this fall. Keeping them safe and warm inside until we build the henhouse and free range area (yes, I can build...there's more to me than crafting :). Anyone else have chickens? Are we crazy? They are so precious...am I holding and loving them too much? The book says I can do that.
And in other news...
The second quote art giveaway piece is going all the way to Alaska! Congratulations, Michelle. I've already gotten in touch with you and look forward to hearing back. And check out Michelle's etsy site...cute aprons! I'm all about wearing aprons every day now...must be the farm wife thing I've got going on.
And while I'm thinking about it...
Remember back at Christmas when I did that "Christmas from the Craft Room" series? Anyone? I'd like to do something similar called "Handmade from Home"...maybe starting next week. Finishing and getting our Postmark book out into the world has me inspired to get all artsy and craftsy these days.
Much homegrown love to each of you! (and yes, I most absolutely did read all those comments...every single one.)
William Henry Hudson, British author and naturalist, said these words in 1919:
"I am not a lover of lawns.
Rather would I see daisies in their thousands,
ground ivy, hawkweed, and even the hated plantain with tall stems,
and dandelions with splendid flowers and fairy down,
than the too-well-tended lawn."
William Henry! Where have you been all my life?
Okay so I'm partly loving his words because my yard at present is pretty awful.
I have always loved unkempt, cottage, rambling yards. Could never find any personality at all in the well-manicured, perfectly maintained beds and lawn. Got those genes from my maternal grandmother. Her flowers grew everywhere and anywhere in her yard which would have never been featured on the cover of a gardening magazine, but it was beautiful...it was beautiful to me. And doggone it, I'm tired of feeling guilty because my grass might be an inch too long and what might someone think. And I refuse to zap a pretty yellow dandelion with chemicals (if I could just get my husband to agree).
So let's go crazy this summer and let a little grass creep over onto our sidewalks, who's with me? :)
We're not letting things go, we're letting things grow!
just so you know...occasionally I will link to an item that I have used and recommend to you. If you purchase this product through my link I may receive a small percentage of the purchase price. You never pay more for the item by purchasing it via my website link.