Monthly Archives: July 2018

July 3rd, Fox Lake Road



Tuesday, again. The last day of my “week-end.” It’s my last chance to catch up on my rest and get ready for the busy week ahead. The day to finish up all the home and yard projects I planned to get done on my days off. It’s blogging day. It’s the day I try to get to town for post office, transfer station and grocery store. As usual, one day doesn’t seem like enough time.

We’ve had a week of extreme heat, unusual for Beaver Island, resulting in a string of uncomfortably warm nights. There wasn’t a breeze to be found, here on the Fox Lake Road. My little fan barely made a difference in the oppressive heat in my house. I spent several nights tossing and turning, too hot to sleep. A storm came through on Sunday night, bringing welcome rain and cooler temperatures. I’ve been sleeping long and well the last couple nights.

This time of year, one of the busiest weeks of the whole year on Beaver Island, it is important to be rested. Businesses are stretched to their limits with thousands of visitors in addition to regular customers. The hardware store is hectic all day long. By the end of the long work day, I am exhausted. A walk or a drive to Fox Lake with the dogs, a bit of time to pull weeds from the flower beds and water the garden, then supper, a half-hour of cleaning time, and I’m done. I have no energy beyond that. All projects have to wait for my days off.

So, Monday and Tuesday are always busy days, and this week more than most. I finished setting up my bullet journal for July, with the month already underway. I finished a load of towels and another of rugs yesterday. I have dark clothes on the line now. I filled a wheelbarrow with weeds trimmed from around the stone-bordered flower beds, and started digging a new fire pit.

I have a large fire pit in the front yard, four feet in diameter, that I planned to use for pit-firing ceramics, and large bonfires with friends. I have never used it for either of those purposes. It is too big and deep to be useful for roasting marshmallows. I use it, mainly, for burning windfall branches and my household paper trash. A smaller fire pit will be more serviceable. The large circle in the front yard could be filled in and used as a flower bed, or simply returned to lawn.

So, I spent a good part of yesterday afternoon digging a hole, and removing the sod from the surrounding area. I used the soil I dug out to fill in low areas of the back yard; I filled the wheelbarrow with roots to be hauled away. Today, I plan to empty the wheelbarrow, then fill it with large rocks to border the new fire pit.

Inside, I have two unopened boxes to deal with. They are filled with metal frames and pre-cut mats: almost all the materials I need to get two large paintings and a dozen small collages framed and ready to show. To finish, I’ll have to make time to stop at the hardware store, and cut a dozen pieces of glass for the collage frames. With the tourist season underway and a couple special art shows coming up, that has to be done right away.

Beyond all that, there are bills to pay and letters to write before I go to the Post Office. I need to gather up the recyclable trash to take to the transfer station. I should go through the magazine rack and get rid of those publications that have been hanging out since Christmas.  I have a short list of necessities to pick up from the grocery store, and should go through the cupboards to see what I’ve missed. I know I’m (dread!) out of ice cream! It would be smart to plot out a week’s meals so I can put lunches and dinners together with what I have on hand.

That’s what’s happening, or should be happening, on this third day in July, here on the Fox Lake Road. From the looks of this list, I’d better get busy!



The 52 Lists (for Happiness) Project #27



List your values and beliefs:

  • I believe in the Golden Rule. I am sure that if each person would look honestly into their heart and always treat others as they would like to be treated, the world would be a much kinder place.
  • I believe in kindness. My daughter has a quote from the Dalai Lama on her home page: “Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.”
  • I believe people will do their darnedest to live up to expectations others have for them. Because of that, I try to begin with, “You are so good at…” rather than, “You need to do better at….” When talking about my children with other mothers, I’d make a point of talking as if they already possessed the behavior I wanted them to cultivate. Even if they were in a far distant room, deeply involved in play, I’d say, “Oh, Jenny plays very well with other children” or “Katey is really good at  sharing,” and I’d notice their little shoulders squaring up, their eyes brightening, and maybe a little smile playing ’round their lips. Imagine how differently their reaction, if I’d said something negative!
  • I believe in paying attention. Life is short. Moments are fleeting. Days fly past. Even golden moments, and important days. Take note. Pay attention. Appreciate all that is here. In the blink of an eye, it could be gone.
  • I believe in doing no harm. This one is hard. I swat mosquitoes and kill flies. I set traps for mice. I recently found a hornet’s nest-in-progress, just inside the entrance to my garden shed. I hit it with a thick spray of foaming wasp and hornet killer. I am pretty merciless when it comes to non-flowering or invasive weeds.  I eat meat. I have spread gossip, and talked unkindly about others behind their back. So, clearly, for me, it is not always possible. I still think it is a good intention, and that I am a better person for holding this up as an objective, even though I will never be completely successful.
  • I believe we have a duty to help and protect those weaker or needier than ourselves. We’re all here together on this planet, all simply striving for a little bit of happiness.
  • I believe there are benefits in hard work.
  • I believe in laughter.
  • I believe in love.