I was just looking at my blog header. The beach where I took this photo has oil all over it now. There is nothing new I can say about this that you haven't already heard or read. It breaks my heart and makes my blood boil. My favorite place has been defiled. The beauty of creation has been smeared with the filth of our wastefulness. I take responsibility for my part, but I'm not sure what to do about it.
So much. So much! It's been constant, this life thing, for months on end. Hasn't it always been constant? Why is it that I can no longer fit my life into the space I'm given?
Many of you know that we lost Cupcake (also here) in April. We miss him so. I still cry sometimes, but not as often as at first.
We finished up a great school year in early June. Ruby is a wonderful person, and I feel so blessed- and honored- to get to teach her. Her violin (and fiddling) is improving all the time, too. I'm awestruck by the fact that my "little girl" can make her own (amazing) music. Getting ready for 6th grade in August!
We enlarged our vegetable garden from 8X10 to 10X45 this year. Would you believe it's 10 times the work when you enlarge a garden by 5 times the space? I also learned this last 2 weeks of being away from home a lot that even a day without tending can have serious consequences in the garden. The happy news is that we have a few quarts of squash in the freezer. We're regularly eating squash, green beans, and now corn from our own garden, and the tomatoes and okra are almost ready. Actually, I managed to let the first of the okra over mature. Frustrating! Know what else I've learned? Organic gardening is HARD!! It is sooo tempting to just get some common pesticide and plunk it out on the plants as I watch them being eaten away. The organic remedies are out there, but most are expensive and they require constant application. I won't give up, but I will stomp around the yard in frustration some more, to be sure. :-)
Keith and I recently celebrated our 25th anniversary. It was a bit like turning 40. I expected it to feel like something new, but it didn't. :-) Thank God for my patient and loving husband.
For the last week and a half Ruby and I have been volunteering at Maxwell Air Force Base in the International Family Orientation Program. We were in the 5th-6th grade class. What a great experience! Ruby has some new friends from all over the world and we learned a lot. I was merely helping the main teacher for our class. Monica did an amazing job with this group. I felt so inadequate next to her! But I was oh-so-thankful for her boundless energy and great ideas. You might not guess it, but 18 10 and 11 yr. olds, some of whom speak only marginal English, can be a little challenging to contain and engage! They are precious kids whom I will not forget.
Ruby leaves for camp for the first time on Sunday. This is a watershed moment, to be sure. I love that she's going. I hate that she's going. Ugh.
This Sunday a new pastor will begin serving in our church. As employees, this is a nervy time. The United Methodist itinerant system is hard on all UM church employees, I think. We will see and time will tell. Hoping and praying for the best in the meantime.
I recently read Julie Clawson's Everyday Justice. I can't recommend it highly enough. I also started Half the Sky. I so admire Nicholas Kristof and the work he does. I don't really do book reviews, but I think you and your world would be edified by both of these books.
This shot of the garden is almost a month old, but you get the idea. It seems big to us, but compared to many of our neighbors it is just a little baby garden.