Oregon writer, Rain Trueax, and Oregon painter, Diane Widler Wenzel co-author Rainy Day Thought. Diane generally posts on Wednesdays and Rain on Saturdays. There may be extra days or changes as situations warrant. Comments are always welcome and appreciated as it turns an article into a discussion.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

summertime and the living isn't necessarily easy but is gorgeous

When considering what a summer should be, this has been the perfect one for us here at the farm. Hot days but most of the time not too hot. We have not had to bring out the room a/c unit which is an indicator of it being too hot. We don't have central air conditioning here because with the creek, it's only a few days a summer where we might need it.

Sunday we had an exciting thunderstorm with just enough rain to lessen the risks of fires from lightning strikes. It was the kind of storm I have seen more frequently in Arizona with squalls of hail, and thunder rumbling around for about four hours. The main Willamette Valley, to the east of us, got most of the wind, lightning and damage. 

Our vegetable garden is starting to really produce, and we are enjoying thinking up creative ways to use all the tomatoes, zucchini, string beans, corn, and cucumbers we have and soon will have. I think we might make pickles this year. The variety of cucumber we planted has been surprisingly sweet even when bigger (when they usually get a little bitter).

For pickles I am looking for a recipe for spicy, peppery dill pickles as I like that better than a straight dill. We have been considering getting a food dryer as the apple trees are loaded too. There is a lot of bounty to process in some way for the winter.

In the meantime it's good to sit out on the patio and talk, to enjoy the family when we can get together, to dream dreams (I have had some interesting ones), to mix the work that is part of this season with the joy, and to savor these long, warm and lush days. This is Oregon's season to shine.

The only concern will be fire danger. Eastern and Central Oregon got hit hard by the recent lightning storm, and fires are everywhere with enough to have the governor declare a national emergency to enable the National Guard to help. So it's been tough on some regions for the danger and fear. I totally relate to it and we could end up with the same problems as we have in previous years. 

Photos all from July on the farm. I find myself not wanting to leave here because this is the place I'd most want to be if I didn't already live here. I spent some time where dragonflies hang out trying to get some good photos but so far no luck. Just blue blurs. I haven't given up yet. I do though have some wonderful photos of swallowtail butterflies on our butterfly bush, but will save those for next Saturday.


Tabor said...

I have been thinking of you with those horrible fires not far away. Glad you have such a lovely summer. But your part of the world is mostly lovely always, isn't it? We have gotten a perfect summer break with low humidity and not too high temps. But as you an tell from my posts, I have been a little too busy to enjoy it.

Linda Kay said...

How fun to think that if you didn't live where you are that it would be where you want to live! We are looking forward to a trip to Montana coming up soon, but have not been to Oregon. Hope the rain keeps the fires in check. And...such a cute summer dress.

Celia said...

Nice to you both in your pictures, such a lovely place to live. Your garden sounds wonderful, mm, dried apples.

Rubye Jack said...

It is too hot here and I wouldn't mind moving a bit closer to the coast. The land of plenty!

OldLady Of The Hills said...

It looks so very lovely there---Your Summer sounds ideal! Wish I had a recipe for you for those pickles--what a wonderful idea! You look very fresh and pretty in that very colorful dress.....!
Hope your summer continues to be a real joy, my dear!

Would love to see that Catepiller(?) picture again...It was up for a second and then blogger said---The Blog you are looking for doesn't exist....That was such a wonderful photo.

Rain Trueax said...

Naomi, once in awhile I goof and hit the wrong button which in this case pre-published what is due for next Saturday on swallowtail butterflies here. That photo, however was online and I used someone else's to show people the caterpillar that leads to the butterfly. I clipped it down a bit but here is the photo from where I borrowed (giving credit, of course)-- Tiger Swallowtail.

I did some research on the butterflies and had to debate which blog came first but decided the garden and storm story required it to be first. I will be on the lookout for the caterpillars now that I know what to look for and hopefully get some photos of my own of them. :)

robin andrea said...

It really is so beautiful there. Glad your summer is going well and the garden is so deliciously productive. This is our first summer in a long time without a garden, so we are really appreciating the farmers market. Hope the fires stay away and the summer stays beautiful.