Since it is summer and the weather is finally warm, I guess I have some excuse for not writing as often as I should. Needless to say there are many distractions outside these days.
The yard needs mowing. We keep it fairly long so we don’t have to water and it will still stay green. Wonder of wonders, it has been almost a month since it last rained. This is unheard of in maritime Washington State. We could use a little rain right about now. Not only would it green up the yard and wash the dust from all the leaves, it would reduce the danger of fires. Fires are not usually a problem here, though we take precautions like burn bans and mowing the sides of the road to protect from careless cigarette smokers, but last year eastern Washington was devastated by fires. This year already over 50,000 acres have burned by the end of June.
My vegetable garden demands a lot of time. I had promised myself that I would reduce the size this year so I wouldn’t be driven crazy with trying to keep it up. Also a large garden requires more water and since we must collect all the water we use for it, I probably should have reduced the size. We are half the way through the first barrel which holds 1500 gallons. We still have a barrel with 350 gallons and one with 2500. Hopefully we will make it until the end of the season. I was going to plant half a row of beans, but my husband mentioned that we were just about out in the freezer and we had a whole row last year. He doesn’t remember that we gave lots to the food bank last year but we will probably have enough to do that again this year.
It is now raspberry season so I am making raspberry wine and jam and shortcakes. Picking and processing them takes time. They need to be processed almost immediately after picking or they will mold and if I don’t stay on top of the picking, the birds get them. I am happy for them to have some, but I want the lion’s share.
Teaching still takes up two afternoons of my time and painting and writing the rest of my time. I am working hard toward the goal of publishing my book about my life teaching in Beijing. It has been a struggle and I have promised myself to have it ready for a publisher this summer.
At the moment I have three shows with over a total of forty paintings on display. I sold one in the first week it was showing. Yeah! Now it is county fair time and I just took three more in for judging yesterday. I still probably have over one hundred stored in my studio. I should have a burning party and get rid of the old stuff, but it is summer and I would probably burn down the countryside as the MDF I use burns VERY hot. Better save that for a winter project.
I have a lot of excuses for not keeping up with the blog, but I really enjoy it when I have a chance to do something on it. I certainly encourage everyone to have a place to write about their day to day life. Journals, blogs, or whatever. I will work harder to try to keep you posted on rural living.
Have a great summer!