Wednesday, June 1, 2022


Suddenly it’s June. It’s the month I’ve been waiting for all year. June ushers in summer for me here in Pennsylvania.

As a farm kid, it was the month of clover, alfalfa, and grasses drying in the rows in our fields. Smells were everywhere: The odor of gasoline from the tractor, hay truck, and lawn mower. The sweet fragrance of summer rag roses in the yard. The earthy aroma of rain as it approaches to soak the ground. The whiff of mint circling the old oak spring boxes in the pastures. These were all mixed together in the daily harmony of farm life.

There was also the unexpected that happened to throw a person off kilter. It was the black snake slithering over a stone wall as we tramped down the fields to the pasture to bring the herd of cows home for evening milking. Better yet, it was those aggravating times when the black racer’s lazy cousin, lying in the low branches of a hemlock tree, would drop down in front of the herd and send the cows racing willy-nilly up into the wooded hillside where we had to regroup them one by one. And we always counted. Numerous times we counted those cows to be sure we had them all before setting out for home.

Old Hay Loader
When evening fell, we’d sit out on our front porch to catch a fading breeze and watch the barn swallows circle the sky and deftly snatch the last mosquito. Lightening bugs danced above the lawn and in the bushes. Windows were thrown open wide. If you were lucky, you had a window fan on the hottest night. The hum of insects in the grasses and trees were the songs that lulled us to sleep. Far off, you could hear the neighbor’s dog bark, upset by some night creature nearby. And everyone listened for the eerie hoots of an owl on his evening hunt.

When people ask if summers were the hard times of farm life, I’d have to say, they were the busy and tiring times with long days. But they were the good times.

It was June. It was summer. And it felt wonderful. 


Monday, May 2, 2022

ASPARAGUS AND WINE - Nothing Can Go Wrong!

May 24th and May 25th of May is National Asparagus Day and National WINE day respectively! Now, give me a good steak, or grilled salmon, or a pulled pork dish with asparagus and wine, and I’m in seventh heaven.

From everything I could find about asparagus, it has been used as a vegetable for not only eating, but also for its medicinal properties as a diuretic and as a purported aphrodisiac. It is pictured as an offering on an Egyptian frieze dating to 3000 B.C. It was known in Syria, Iberia, and to the Greeks and Romans who ate it fresh or dried it for winter use. My neighbor raises a variety of asparagus every spring and generously gives me a taste. Many people will tell you a person either loves asparagus or hates it. Which one are you?                                                                       

Now the idea of a national wine day is something everyone can get behind. There are over 10,000 varieties of different grape wines in the world that fit into the classifications of red, white, rose, sparkling, or dessert wines.  Since I’m a fan of Mexican food, I’m a fan of sangria which uses red wine and fruit juices. For a simple glass without any embellishments, I tend to like white wines. If you are an enthusiast of wine, what are your choices?

In celebration of the month that brings us flowers, I think I’ll finish this blog post, and the other household and writing chores, and wander over to the kitchen this evening where the wine is stored. What’s better than finding a comfortable chair, a good book, and a delicious glass of wine to end the day?



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Do you like humor and mystery combined? Under Starry Skies is the stand-alone intriguing sequel to my very first western, mystery, and romance, Red Fox Woman. Set in 1875 in the West, it’s a fast-paced read with a quiet rancher, determined schoolmarm, and wily Indian who wants to learn to read.

Monday, April 4, 2022

APRIL - Decluttering Your Life

Everyone thinks of April as the month that brings showers for May flowers. For me, April and springtime is the time to rid myself of all the stuff that I’ve accumulated over the last year and declutter the house.


There’s a saying: When things are adding up in your life—start subtracting.


But how to do it?


First, it’s not just moving things around or crating them up, using boxes and neat little containers. It’s not shifting one pile of things to the other side of the room.


If your goal is to get organized and create space, then your goal is to get rid of things. You need to ask yourself these questions:

     Do I really need it?

     Is it useful and functional?   

     Can I live without it/them? I say them, because we could be talking 

          about scarves, socks, shoes, pens and pencils, and those empty 

          Kool Whip containers you were going to find a use for.

      Are these things causing me stress?

      Will I enjoy the freedom of letting the object(s) go?

      Can I give things away or donate them?

There is one thing to remember when decluttering. Only attack one area, one spot in a room, or a few dresser drawers at one time. Otherwise, you can become overwhelmed and find yourself surrounded by chaos and lots of stuff…and stress.

 A Finnish proverb says Happiness is a place between too little and too much.

I hope you find your happy place!

                        Please see all my books on my Amazon Author Page

Tuesday, March 8, 2022

MARCH: Women's History Month

Every year, March is designated Women’s History Month by presidential proclamation. The month is set aside to honor women’s contributions in American history.

Women’s History Month began as a local celebration in Santa Rosa, California.

One of Ours
In 1978, The California Education Task Force of the Sonoma County Commission on the Status of Women planned and executed a “Women’s History Week” celebration. The organizers selected the week of March 8 to correspond with International Women’s Day, and the movement spread across the country to other communities.

In 1980, the National Women’s History Project, a consortium of women’s groups and historians, which is now the National Women's History Alliance, lobbied for national recognition. In February 1980, President Jimmy Carter issued the first Presidential Proclamation declaring the Week of March 8th 1980 as National Women’s History Week. In 1987, Congress passed Public Law 100-9, designating March as “Women’s History Month.”

The month-long event was created to shine the spotlight on the many women who have selflessly given of themselves to improve the lives of their families, communities, and the world-at-large in all areas.

Obviously, women writers of yesteryear come to mind who have led the way for female writers today. There are many who came before us. Six of my favorite writers both novelists and poets are: Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice; Willa Cather, One of Ours; Alice Munro, Dear Life; Louisa May Alcott, Little Women; Emily Dickinson, Hope is the Thing with Feathers; Elizabeth Barrett Browning, How Do I Love Thee?

I have a copy of  How Do I Love Thee on my living room wall. It was artfully crafted, starting outward in a circle and spiraling round and round, ending in the center. It is still my very favorite of all poems.

          How Do I Love Thee?

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of being and ideal grace.
I love thee to the level of every day’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for right.
I love thee purely, as they turn from praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints. I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life; and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

Who do you think has helped shape women writers of today? Who do you admire? I’d love to hear your thoughts. 

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Judy Ann Davis