Summer::August:full of sap and green...

August is summer's hump month--that's how I look at it anyway. It's halfway to cooler mornings and pleasant evenings and no mosquitoes; and if there's one word to describe Florida in August it's green

Mere days into the month, Louis is diagnosed with a detached retina and referred for surgery, and I'm scheduled for a remicade infusion, as well as my yearly series of pulmonology and rheumatology evaluations.   

It seems that we spend more days on the road and in waiting rooms and exam rooms than we do at home; and maybe that's why I've been more inclined to wander outside of our air-conditioned house, even if August holds some of summer's hottest and most humid days.

I'm desperate for sunlight, fresh air, and beauty...ever full of sap and green.  

Crepe myrtle, beautyberry, a downy woodpecker, magnolias, honeysuckle, a mama fox squirrel scurrying up an oak tree with her baby, and Casey's family coming to our rescue to mow and work outside when Louis can't. Dragon flies and blue skies, wildflowers, and Emily and her rescued chocolate lab.  

I'm so very grateful.

And goldenrod shoots continue to grow taller, reaching for cooler not-summer days.      
The righteous flourish like the palm tree and grow like a cedar in Lebanon. They are planted in the house of the LORD; they flourish in the courts of our God. They still bear fruit in old age; they are ever full of sap and green, to declare that the LORD is upright; he is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him.
~Psalm 92:12-15
Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose trust is the LORD. He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.
~Jeremiah 17:7-8
Creation sings the Father's song... a song of love and grace. [video]


Summer::July Part 2:beautiful in its time...

[As mentioned in July Part 1, Hurricane Irma has been a major disruption this summer. It's a story for September, but not until I get through July and August in my summer photo series--though I realize that it's technically no longer summer. Looking at the pre-Irma photos of our property is bittersweet. It's hard to see how much was destroyed by the hurricane, but I'm confident that much will also be restored in due time. There will always be beauty--and sometimes it can be found in the most unlikely places.]   

After the beach, the remaining weeks of July showcased our typical mid-summer flare--muscovy ducks gliding across the pond's surface, shimmery-winged dragonflies on barb-wired fences and wildflower blooms. Swallow-tailed kites, pileated woodpeckers, blue jays and mockingbirds...and bushes and bushes and bushes of ripening beautyberries. 

And those air potato vines. I'm well aware that they are an unwelcomed invasive species, but how do I not love those shiny heart-shaped leaves in the thickets along the creek before the air potato beetles do their work. 

Virginia creeper climbs the tall pines, and primrose willow dots the open field and pasture. Resurrection fern, unfurling from its dried spiral with every summer rain, drapes the live oak limbs, as 3 armadillo pups root in the ground underneath. 

And when the goldenrod shoots begin to grow--I'm delighted to remember that there will be not-summer days.    
He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man's heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.
~Ecclesiastes 3:11 
The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever.
~Isaiah 40:8