Corny Time

If you truly love Nature, you will find beauty everywhere. ~Vincent Van Gogh, Dutch painter

Happy Thursday!

The corn, as you can see, has tasseled. This is a crop of field corn near where I live. It’s NOT sweet corn, which features full, round, white and light yellow kernels and is planted for human consumption.

Did you know only about one percent of the corn grown on American farms is sweet corn? I didn’t either. But yes, the bulk of our corn is field corn, which you wouldn’t want to eat.

Field corn has dryer, more golden kernels (often with a small dent) and is processed for use in foods with corn ingredients (cereals, chips, etc.), as animal feed, or saved as seed for next year’s crop. It’s also used for non-food things like ethanol.

Sweet corn is generally available July through September, weeks before field corn. In fact, field corn stalks must completely dry out, the silks at the top of each ear turn dark brown, and the ears flip down with the silks toward the ground before a plant is ready for harvest (October-November, usually).

It’s a delicate balance, with farmers sometimes having to rush to get their crops harvested before winter sets in.

Speaking of time, I’m going to take a few days off — the Domer has promised to visit, and I understand there’s a birthday cake with my name on it! Don’t forget me — I’ll be back soon!

R and R for the Soul

The mark of a successful man is one that has spent an entire day on the bank of a river without feeling guilty about it.  ~Author Unknown

Outdoors the clouds roll overhead
Racing one another to a destination unknown.
Trees bow; wildlife seeks shelter against the tempest.

Inside, one’s emotions toss about
Like a dinghy caught in a blustery sea.
As our to-do list swells, the hours of daylight shrink.

We know we must rest, debrief, kick back
If we’re to have strength for the tasks ahead.
Why, then, are we so reluctant to do as we ought?

From youth, we’re ingrained in busyness.
Productivity, activity, restlessness.
An idle mind is the devil’s workshop and all that.

We race about trying to prove we’re accomplishing something,
Warding off the evils of idleness and sloth,
While tempting Fate to substitute ill health and exhaustion.

Maybe more of us need a river bank or park bench,
A place of solitude and rest for mind and body.
Stolen time to recharge, energize, restore, renew.

I crowded far too many tasks into Yesterday. Today is now demanding music, chocolate truffles, and sporadic dancing, as compensation. ~Dr. SunWolf

Note: Along with the good doctor above, I’m going to take a few days’ break. Maybe even a week! It’s time for Fourth of July, a visit with Domer, and some much-needed “Debbie-time.” I’ll be back (don’t forget me!)


You know, there are times in our lives when we’re on brain-overload and just getting through another day requires super-human effort.

Life has been like that for me for the past six weeks or so.

It started in August with a new Web Design project. Can I ever admit I’ve bitten off more than I can chew? Nope, not gonna happen. So I buckle down and deal, cursing that I’m not a programmer, trying to educate myself on code, and wishing for simple solutions to complex problems.

It continued through Domer’s first semester, when he was juggling Band, classes, projects, job applications, and interviews. Having your only son travel ’round the country via plane, bus, and auto isn’t easy, but at least he was putting forth a concerted effort. He could have been like his mom, who at his age embraced Scarlett O’Hara’s “I’ll worry about that tomorrow” philosophy.

It increased in the  Fall, when my mom started having trouble with her hernia. Every few days, I had to take her to the emergency room at the hospital or an after-hours clinic when she complained of pain. It seemed a portion of her bowel was beginning to poke through the abdominal muscle — a complication from surgery she’d had years before — and it was creating a hernia. They’d fix her up and send her home, only to have it happen again and again.

Finally, someone told her she needed to have surgery to repair it. You don’t want to wait until it’s an emergency, they said.

Three weeks later, they scheduled surgery. And that, too, was hectic, from the actual procedure to the recovery. Released after just two days, she developed extreme pain from the buildup of air in the bowel, which “hadn’t woken up” from anesthesia; they readmitted her.

That crisis, too, passed, and she came home again over the weekend.

In the meantime, I’ve found myself shouldering the lion’s share of work — decorating inside and out for Christmas, buying and wrapping presents, chauffeuring her to appointments, and so forth. My sister would do the same, if she were here. Which she’s not.

My novel-writing has suffered. So has my blog. In fact, there have been days when I haven’t even turned on my laptop.

And the other day I turned on the TV to hear of yet another senseless shooting. This time, of innocent children while they were in school.

So I’ve been AWOL. Trying to gather my bearings. Trying to heal my heart.

I call it brain-overload. And it’s best not to keep shouldering on when it happens, but to take a break.

Before I break.

The holidays seem like a perfect time to do just that. Call it paring down. Or taking a siesta. Or lightening my load.


Best wishes to all my blogging friends for a Happy Christmas and New Year’s Day. I’ll miss you, but I’ll be back in early January.