It’s really hot! I know that 85 degrees F is nothing to whine about in comparison to an average summer heat wave in other parts of the country, but it is hot for western Washington this time of year–and it has been been warm and sunny all spring. No “June-uary” to complain about, with its cold rains and wind, and we have an official drought proclamation for the entire state.
In response to this year’s weather, we are experimenting with more efficient watering techniques, planting plans and overall just trying to keep our normal selection of crops alive and well despite these abnormal climate patterns. For the most part, we have enjoyed an early harvest of herbs and produce even though the summer is just getting started. The farm is forging ahead, but with a certain openness to the uncertainty of the season.
Admittedly, part of the general uncertainty is related to the fact that we are expecting a baby girl any day now. I am at 38 weeks into my pregnancy as I type this blog post. (I am not much use on the farm at this point, so I am using this “sitting with swollen feet up” time to write–apologies for the dearth of blogs this year). Right now we are truly living day-by-day, waiting for the moment labor begins. We are as prepared as we can be and truly excited, but the reality is we have no idea what will happen or how this will affect our life.
However, I am finding a certain freedom in this not-knowing. Biologically, I have read that the average female brain shrinks by 4% during pregnancy, while the heart grows by 12% to accommodate the increase in blood and fluid in the body. My heart seems to be leading the way these days and I appreciate the openness, this love and trust, I am feeling. It’s love in the broadest sense of the word- a complicated mixture of joy, excitement and sorrow. I am reminded daily by the creatures and plants on the farm to stay aware of the wonder and beauty in the world, but I am also deeply saddened by the most recent mass shooting as well as several passings in our circle of friends and family.
So, I am calling this the summer of love for many reasons. Ten years ago I decided I was in love with this valley and I wanted to live here. That is also around the time Fran was born. Now, as Dean and I await our first child, I am reflecting on all of the wonderful people and experiences I have had over the last decade. The past several years on the farm have flown by so fast that I do not think I have truly processed all that has happened and I am grateful for the memories and clarity this gestation process brings. In this summer of love, I am taking it slow, surrendering to the unknown, remembering and refueling my passions and appreciating the emotions within each day.
In the world around me I am relieved to be reading that the Pope acknowledges our delicate relationship with Earth, I am listening to new and inspiring music from some of my favorite singer/songwriters like Martha Scanlan, I am trying to catch each sunset before it passes. I am writing.
I hope to give you a mid-to-late summer update. In the meantime, enjoy your own experience in this summer of love. Be open, be kind, and be honest and enjoy all the beauty around you!