By Sandy Laumeyer
Just a Thought 

Thankful for Every Drop


We all know how fickle Mother Nature can be. I don’t think there’s one month I haven’t seen weather that is unusual. Take this month -- June -- for example.

Normally we have a pretty decent growing season. But one year, the growing season was only 69 days. We had a foot of snow in mid-June. I’ve seen snow fall in every month except July and August.

One year, it was so cold in July, I remember wearing my winter coat as I watched the free show at the fair. I think that was the same year as when it snowed in June.

We’ve not had much rain so far this year. In mid-June of 1969, we had rain for 17 days in a row. Some days it was only a tenth or two, but other days [there] was a lot more. We couldn’t get any field work done. But we did get to visit with neighbors, play Whist and shared meals with friends. Come to think of it, that was the same year our 17 straight days of rain moved to Iowa. My mother passed away on July 16. When we got to Iowa, it was July 18, and we were informed it had rained every day from July 1 through July 17.

By the time we could get back into the fields, not only were the crops of pretty good height, but so were the weeds.

Luckily, our first born was several months away yet, so I didn’t suffer insanity from young children not being able to go outside and play. Although with two teenage nephews and a teenage niece staying with us, it was probaby just as hectic. We were fortunate in the fact [that] we had neighbors who had teenage children, so that helped somewhat.

As well as excessive rain, we also experience[d] excessive drought in June. I was thankful I’d come up with a way to keep my garden watered so I didn’t lose all my vegetables. Some years before the drought hit, I’d gone to one of the bars in town and asked for empty whiskey bottles. The best part is that they were free.

I took home as many as I felt I needed, sterilized them, then filled them with water and turning them neck down, shoved one into the ground next to each tomato, green pepper, cucumber and cabbage plant. I placed several bottles along the rows of green beans, peas, kohlrabi, onions and corn. The bottles would have to be refilled every three to four days, but that was easier than watching my plants and winter food supply shrivel up and die.

When the rain keeps falling way past what we feel we need, we find ways to save some of that extra life-giving water.

Regardless, though, of the amount of rain we receive in June, I’ve learned to be thankful for every drop.


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