June on the Farm

Bike rides on gravel roads; cool water, the trusty sprinkler, picnics and grandma’s salads, Old Dutch chips, fireflies, bible camp, babysitting, teen beat, lollies, and boys. These are just some of my memories of summers on the farm. Oh how I remember wanting to go camping, but that was out of the question. My parents were so not the camping type. So, we improvised. I would throw blankets over the clotheslines and crawl in and lie there and watch the reflections of bugs and bees fly over my “tent.” I loved the thought of sleeping outside with all the kittens, our dog, frogs, and all the birds. Why, I’d be right there with the fireflies and whippoorwill.

I waited all year for summer to come. Oh how I dreaded school. As the month of May wound down, so would my angst at school be replaced with daydreams. Boys, bike riding, chasing fireflies, walking the valley, hanging with the neighbor kids, picnics, easy times, and best of all, gardens of flowers in bloom all over our farm. Don’t let me forget to mention the strawberry bed and the first tomato, or walking barefoot everywhere and trips to town. My first stop at Rexall Drug and the magazine racks for me. I would save all my babysitting money and pray there was a new Tiger Beat out that week.

Summertime meant more time to read, earn money, and reinvent myself for the next school year. The first picnic would be for Dad’s birthday in June. As I type this post, it is his birthday. Ah, I wonder if anyone celebrates birthdays in heaven. He’s been gone for almost twenty-five years now. Grandma, his mother, always wanted to have a picnic for him. Eventually, we bought a picnic table and, thereafter, a picnic we had. Grandma and her strawberry jello with fresh strawberries and cool whip, Mom and her Old Dutch chips, and at the last minute, grabbing a couple of cans of 7-up so that Dad would have a cold drink after chores. Summertime meant sitting in the crook of an old tree and daydreaming away the afternoon, or walking through the woods to bird song and finding a cool spot to lie down in the grass.

Whippoorwills at night in the tree by our bedroom. Peepers and big fat toads croaking in the pond across the street. On our farm, every single day was the best time of the whole year. Whether it was the smell of freshly mowed hay or green chop, the anticipation of the first peony, strawberry, or green bean, or summer storms that had us sitting on our screened-in front porch, laughing at the loud claps of thunder and smelling summer rains. Oh, how I miss this part of my life growing up in the 70s on my family’s farm.

Nothing compares to the innocent times of childhood where a simple storm, a favorite magazine, an afternoon stroll, hot dogs for lunch, the treat of a cone from A & W on a Sunday afternoon, or watching Dad come flying down the hill on his old John Deere, standing up, letting the cool breeze blow through his bib overalls, happy to be hauling the last load of hay home for the day. Simple times, beautiful memories, cherished days. Summers on the farm.✨ 

revised and reposted 6/16/22

🐝kind be well, until next time

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