Monday, July 7, 2014

In the Good Ol' Summertime....

   Summertime is always a very busy time for my family, with our produce stand and everything else going on, and sometimes it seems like there's hardly any time to rest and just be. So I suppose that's my excuse for neglecting my little blog. :-)  I've been super occupied with.....well, a lot of things. Work at the stand, work here at home, going places, and trying to write my first novel. But this is the way I like to live-- happily and exuberantly and fully. I love being occupied, as long as I have time for all the most important things.
  Summer is when life can be the most difficult-- especially being a farmer, when you pretty much have to rely completely on the mercy of the weather, which rarely ever cooperates the way you want it to. But it's also when I love life the most. Picking peas in the hot sun (or the pouring rain), writing on haybales in the barn, getting up early and watching the world wake up as the sun rises, walking home from the stand after closing each evening and stopping by the creek just to listen to the water run over the rocks....these are the sweet, simple things that make life so special. Things like eating strawberries for every meal, riding in the trunk of a vehicle amid quarts of berries, watching classic Dr. Quinn episodes (and crying over Matthew-- hey, I can't help it, he's just so sad!), and staying up late at night to finish reading your favorite book in the whole world for the fifth time.

  I recently read a quote that said, "Life doesn't have to be perfect to be wonderful". Nobody's life is perfect. Mine is certainly far from it. But God gives us so many undeserved blessings each day, and He's always there to help us through the trials, even when we don't feel Him. Even though life is often a struggle, it doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful.

    Life is an adventure, and right now, I'm loving just about every minute of it.

    So here are some of the things I've been up to in the past month....

~ picked peas in the pouring rain. THAT was fun. Not really.

~ laughed so hard I could hardly breath.

~ went to a Jamberry Nails party hosted by some friends, which was fun. I'm not really much for doing my nails ('cause I'm not careful and they invariably always come off in record time), but it was nice to get together with such a nice group of girls and my sisters and I actually did order some of the nail wraps. Mine have a newspaper-sorta print on them....yes, I'm eccentric. :-P

~ quoted movie lines. A great deal. Here are some of my most-frequently quoted lately:

"Don't look at me, I just got here."  ~ Yours, Mine, and Ours
"Madam, what else is new?"  ~1776
"Quittin' time!"  ~Gone With the Wind
"Gentlemen, good luck. If you need me, I shall be in Australia."  ~The Phantom of the Opera (I've used this one an awful lot-- every time I leave the house, or the pea patch, or whenever I'm going somewhere I tend to use this line.)
"I didn't see no line, Gus."   ~Lonesome Dove 

~ went strawberry picking with my cousins.

~ went cherry picking with my other cousins. :-)

~ helped a stray cat from Kentucky feel at home in our barn (long story, that).

~ voraciously read old issues of American Cowboy and Cowboys and Indians that a friend lent me. (I'm getting my own subscription to AC soon though, which I'm super excited about.)

~ went to a family reunion.

~ went on a boat ride with some friends from our church on Chautauqua Lake, which was absolutely beautiful-- the first time I'd ever actually been on the lake and not just looking at it, wishing I was on it. :-)

clockwise: picking cherries, on the lake, Molly and my cousin Rebecca at the reunion, strawberries, Sadie and cousin Katie, the cherry orchard.

~ joined Pinterest and discovered that it's far too easy and far too much fun to waste time on there.

~ went to an English Country Dancing Summer Frolic, which was SO much fun!

~ finished sewing my first project-- a Colonial-era gown that I wore to the Frolic. I had a tremendous amount of help from a friend, so I didn't do it all by myself, but I'm still rather proud as I think it turned out quite nicely for being my first really sewing project-- besides sewing ribbons on pointe shoes, I'd previously had zero experience.

~ went to the opera for the first time ever! My mom took my sisters and I to see Puccini's Madam Butterfly. It was....interesting, let's put it that way. Let's just say that opera is not my forte, plus the story is just plain morbid. The singers were completely amazing though. I don't know how they got through the entire three hours-- if I was so exhausted after watching it, I can only imagine how exhausted they must have been after performing it. Just singing one of those arias would probably wipe me out. Goodness.

~ bought my very own laptop! This is my first time writing a post on it. :-) I've been planning on getting my own laptop for a few months, and last week I finally bought one! I've named it Cal (he's a boy) after Cal Trask in East of Eden. It's kind of strange to have my own computer, and I think it might take me a while to get used to it. If you know me very well you probably know that I am not at ALL up to date with modern technology, which is why it's kind of ironic to think that I have a laptop. The main reason I wanted to get it is for writing, since I'm working seriously on a novel now and it's good for a writer to have their own computer to take with them anywhere. Still, writing doesn't flow as easily for me typing on a keyboard than it does writing with a pen on notebook paper. :-)

~ watched To Kill a Mockingbird. I know it's a revered classic film and all, and Gregory Peck was fabulous, but I really wasn't as good as I was expecting it to be. There was SO much left out of the book and I felt like it was all moving so fast-- everything happened all at once, and a whole bunch of characters were left out. Dill, however, was ridiculously adorable, and I must say I think Robert Duvall stole the show as Boo Radley, even if he had no lines. Someone give him an Emmy for that. I don't care that the movie's  fifty years old.

~ photographed my cat like crazy. In fact, I have hardly any memory left on my camera because it's so full of pictures of Oliver. ;-P

One morning I walked out on the deck and fund Oliver sleeping in a banana box. :-P

~ taken long walks barefoot in the creek.

~ sat on the bridge and poured my heart out into my writing.

~ read too many historical romances and gotten sick of the genre in general, haha. Now I'm going to read some really old books passed down from my grandpa's family that my grandma and grandpa had at their house. When I say old, I mean really old. One of them was published in 1898.

~ went hiking with my cousins on the 4th of July and climbed a mountain, which was really neat. The view from the top was simply spectacular.

clockwise: the glorious view from the top, one of the cliffs, the stage at Madam Butterfly, the theater, Mary, Peter and Sadie trying to fit between the huge rocks, our patriotic cake.
~ writing. A lot. In fact, I think I've done more writing in the past two weeks than the past three months before that. I'm working on a novel an I've written almost two complete chapters (which is huge for me, since usually I'm so scattered). It's not the novel I posted about around a month ago, but an entirely new story, and I'm keeping it mostly undercover until I've written more. I'm really, really excited about it. :-)

    This Saturday my sisters and I are doing music for a friend's wedding, and then on Sunday we're off to music camp for a week. It's been rather hectic in my neck of the woods lately and there are lots of things coming up, so I probably won't be posting very much in the coming weeks, but I hope I'll be able to pop in occasionally. Thank you all so much for being my readers and for your sweet comments....I know I don't always respond, but I always appreciate your comments, and all of you, so very much! I hope you're all having a great summer! I'll see y'all the meantime I'll be writing my novel, eating watermelon, reading Lynn Austin books, and waiting to hear about Les Mis audition results. :-) Ta-ta!




  1. I loved this post Emma! I love the pictures! And the collages- very cool.:P
    I liked To Kill a Mockingbird! They can't put everything in the movie, you know.
    Ha, yeah, you've GOT to stop taking so many pictures of Oliver. Our camera's just going to blow up because it can't take all the cuteness.
    I know what you mean about the historical romances.:)
    I can't wait to read your novel! But I understand if you want to keep it undercover. Like John-Boy. :) Okay, I use to many smiley faces. Sorry.

  2. Hello Emma! This will be a very long comment.. sorry:)

    Ooh it's Summer where you live how simply cool! It's cold in Australia at the moment.. brrr

    Your writing a novel too! Awesome!
    I just love that feeling of laughing so hard! :D..

    *Hugs then realised I might have creeped you out.. Sorry!* You mentioned Australia?!?!?! :D I quote that one too.. although.. I am in Australia haha.. Phantom.. I love that show! My family as of late have been using:
    "Not happy bob not happy"- Incredibles
    "Coincidence I think not"- Incredibles..
    then you get me..
    "Heeeeees there the phantom of the ooooooperaaaaaa... sing! Ooooooookalahoma where the wind comes sweeping down the plainnnnnnnn. I'm a time lord I am 1000 years old and from the planet Gallifrey and I can't fly a plane can you? It is a truth universally acknowledged that .. the more I know of the world the more I am unsatisfied with it.. I require so much!" (Sorry if you don't get all the references..)

    You have pintrest too! I had to deactivate as I was spending too much time on it for my liking.

    Wow I love your dress!!

    Ah yes, Madam Butterfly.. Yes I agree! The ending though? I was like wait what?!

    Cool! I'm saving for my own.. I at present use the one school lends us..

    Did you audition for Les Mis?! what part?! ah well have a lovely time my friend :)

  3. I've been dying to see To Kill a Mockingbird, but I was afraid of just what you described: the screenwriter leaving out too many of the good parts. Just please tell me they included Atticus and Jem's conversation about Mrs. Dubose.

  4. Sara Lewis,
    No, Mrs. Dubose wasn't even in the movie at all! I was so disappointed! Well, she was in one scene at the beginning just a tiny bit, but there was nothing about Jem and Scout going to read to her or Jem's conversation with Atticus after she died, which I was super miffed about. The movie is alright, but nothing compared to the book. They just included the major points about the Tom Robinson story-- there was SO much left out about Scout and Jem, and Aunt Alexandra wasn't even in it either. I guess they couldn't very well include everything from the book, but I still think it could have been better. Gregory Peck was good, though. :-)


  5. Emma,
    That's such a shame that they didn't include Mrs. Dubose. I thought Chapter 11 was one of the best parts of the whole book, didn't you? Oh well. I've heard that the author was happy with the way the movie turned out and that almost NEVER happens with film adaptations, so I guess it must still be pretty good!

    Sara :-)

  6. Sara,
    That was one of my favorite parts as well. I also loved the parts with Uncle Jack (who wasn't in the movie at all, sadly). And of course, the courtroom scene, which couldn't possibly have been depicted on screen to do it proper justice. Atticus didn't even take his jacket off, which I had been waiting for! And I LOVE the last chapter. Like I said, Robert Duvall was excellent as Boo Radley, but in general I thought the ending was sadly underplayed.

  7. Emma
    Atticus didn't even take off his jacket? Did the writers not realize how important that part is?! *Rolls eyes*

  8. Hope you don't mind me chiming in by me saying Gregory Peck was amazing! and that my whole English class apart from me did not like the film... :O the same class apart from me of course! hates Jane Austen.. I am in shock.. anyhow sorry for butting in! :)

  9. Hi Emma Jane! Just wanted to let you know that I tagged you for the Liebster Award!!!

  10. Congrats on getting your own laptop! That's completely awesome. I love that you named it! I always name computers. Right now I have a laptop named Sherlock, and my old one was Bagheera.

    It sounds like you're having a splendid summer. I hope it continues! And break a leg with those Les Mis auditions!


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