Saturday, August 31, 2013

It's Definitely Still Summer, Y'all

  Happy Labor Day weekend, everyone! I know this weekend marks the beginning of lots of fun autumn traditions. The season *seems* like it's changing. School is in full swing for most folks; football games are on every other television everywhere; and apparently Starbucks has started serving their famed pumpkin spice latte again. Don't even get me started on Pinterest, Hobby Lobby, etc. Not that I haven't grabbed a few ideas myself... But I open Pinterest and cinnamon-orange wafts up from my laptop. It's just too much, too soon.

   So, the man made environments we create for each other all tell us it is no longer summer but now already autumn. What does nature say? Maybe not quite yet. Here in Oklahoma the temps are still right at 100. The humidity is high, but the rains are pretty far off. The horses are still sweaty the birds still spend their afternoons seeking shady refuge, doing nothing; and everything is still blooming and producing! Only the sumac has started to don tinges of crimson. Everything else is still a lush, verdant, summery green. It's still summer!

   The Farmers' Almanac says we still have 22 days of summertime. TWENTY TWO DAYS before autumn officially begins, folks. That is almost a month. And we all know that autumn itself is in flux. You just never know what it will bring.

   So in protest of a premature fall, I will be wearing all the white cotton sundresses I want, even if I have to wear them once in a while with tall boots or a scarf. In fact I will wear all the white I crave. And I will be laying out to read my book club book. I'll be tending the garden, swimming, and grilling outdoors every chance I get.


   Let's not be in a hurry to see it slip away from us, ok? Let's cling to every hot, miserable, extended day we can. Grill with me Swim. Pick wildflowers. Take naps outdoors. Watch the summer stars. Count dragonflies in the afternoon and fireflies at night. They're still out there! They still need love too. Eat as many watermelons as you can find. And fresh basil, while you can.

   The idea that basil will soon be bidding us adieu makes me weepy.

   The only autumnal tasks I'll participate in THIS EARLY are planting some garlic, starting seeds for lettuce, kale, spinach, etc. maybe a few new trees.

   If your'e not yet convinced to continue enjoying summer... Consider this:

   The Farmer's Almanac predicts a hefty winter for most of the continental United States. See for yourself right here.  We should expect and prepare for colder than normal temps and wetter than normal conditions, too. It's gonna be fine, but seriously wintry.

   Remember how miserable you were last spring, after Groundhog Day but before Easter? Remember waiting waiting waiting for that first blush of green? That first daffodil? That first day warm enough to run errands or work outdoors without a heavy coat?

Dormancy has its place in life. Let's not rush it.
Lets embrace and celebrate the life before us while it's here!

   Those final weeks of winter are so. Flipping. Long. I was on the brink of insanity last spring, with all the days and weeks of waiting. Every DAY was long. So right now... every day should COUNT.

   For September and early October, then, I intend to squeeze out every last drop of summer. Every grilled meal. Every lap around the pool. Every early morning run. Every weed pulling, even. Because too soon the weeds will disappear, but so will the zuchinni. And the zinnias. And the melon vines. So will the roses and basil.

   Join me, please! Let's let Summertime 2013 know that she is loved and will be soon missed. Celebrate every remaining week. They will pass quickly. Let's endure the heat. Let's endure the humidity and the electric bill and trips to the store to buy chlorine for the pool. Let's even endure the mosquitoes, friends.

   Because the beauty of summertime is so temporary.

   We can soon enough go back to our fluffy sweaters, orange-clove simmering spices, and pumpkin recipes, I promise. Just not yet.

Happy Labor Day Weekend!
Let's Swim Through It.


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