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Ten Things of Thankful: Summer Strawberry Days Edition

Photo: John and I stand next to Berry, the mascot of Strawberry Days. 
Summer has officially arrived, at least by the calendar. Mother Nature was definitely not having a hot flash yesterday; the high temperature was only in the mid-sixties. However, summer festivities went on as scheduled. In our town, that means Strawberry Days. What does your town celebrate? (We lived briefly in a tiny town that observed Egg Day; I look back on that time fondly.)

Summer and celebrations factor into this week's Ten Things of Thankful list:

1. I'm thankful for summer, and the cool temperatures.  Last summer, we moved into this house. The previous summer, we moved to Utah. The fifteen years prior to that brought triple-digit temperatures in the summers, and not just a day or two at 100, but multiple days when temperatures soar over 105, 110, even 115. I'm not a fan (pun intended!) For the first time in a long time, I'm excited for summer itself. I'm neither packing boxes nor roasting in the heat. Happy day!

2. I'm thankful for summer celebrations. Strawberry Days is the longest-running festival in Utah, and the activities we have attended have been fun:

  • 3. I'm thankful for the Strawberry Day Garden Tour. I love seeing what will grow here amid the deer. This year, though, my favorite stop on the garden tour featured a house as well as a yard. The home is owned by an artist, and her house is her canvas. I could not believe the level of detail in that house; every corner of every room brought something new to see. Here are just a couple of photos:
Photo: One small portion of the living room. A patchwork quilt covers part of the ceiling. A built-in bench has a blue padded seat, and multiple pillows. The wall behind the bench is painted with a landscape of how the Nauvoo, Illinois Temple Hill appeared in the 1800s. There are two wooden chairs in front of the bench, and they sit on a hardwood floor that has been painted in a patchwork quilt motif. 
Photo: In this large upstairs room, a loft area is accessed via a ladder. Under the loft, a bed hangs from chains. (Who wouldn't want a swinging bed?) Strings of lights hang above the bed, and  original artwork hangs on the walls.  The ceiling is painted a dark blue, with white clouds and yellow stars. Hanging and potted plants further accessorize the room. 
  • 4. I'm thankful for the chance to attend the rodeo. I can't remember the last time I went to a rodeo. Honestly, I have mixed feelings about them, but I was positively impressed with the skills of the competitors and the highly-trained horses. I also was impressed with the announcer and the community. At one point, a bull rider was injured and on the ground motionless. When the announcer suggested that prayers would be a good idea, I knew he was preaching to the choir and that there were thousands of prayers silently being offered at that moment. I don't know the update on the bull rider, but he did give a "thumbs-up" to the audience as the paramedics loaded him into the ambulance, so I am hopeful that he will be OK. 
I appreciate also the historical aspect of rodeos; this particular rodeo bills itself as the longest continually-running rodeo in Utah, and it certainly felt like stepping back in time. Local dignitaries attended, as well as a local-but-not-just-local politician (Senator Mitt Romney).

5. I'm thankful for even smaller, yet significant events. John and I got to celebrate his sister's birthday at a family party this week. It is nice that we live close enough to get together frequently.

6. I'm thankful for an unexpected phone call, which resulted in a visit from our former neighbors. We get more visitors now in Utah than we ever did living in California, and we love it! It was so nice to catch up with our neighbors. 

7. I'm thankful that the snakes (yes, multiple) we have seen this year have not been of the rattling variety. Gopher snakes are welcome here (within reason, of course; I'm not picturing an Indiana Jones-type situation) as they keep rodents (of which I have seen zero) at bay. 

8. I'm thankful for I will write a future post with more details, but in short, I was able to find an article about my great-grandfather and his experience in WWI. The article quoted him, which gave me a little insight into his personality.

9. I'm thankful for the good feeling that comes when I help someone. If you are like me, sometimes you might think, "I should do something for so-and-so," but the thought comes at an unreasonable hour, so you forget about it until the next unreasonable time, etc. etc. Well, I finally had my thinking and acting time line up and was able to do a very simple thing for someone that helped her and gave me a mood boost which was disproportionate to the time and effort it took. Go do a small, simple thing and see for yourself the benefits of service. 😊

10. I'm thankful for John. No matter what the season (calendar-wise or weather-wise), we enjoy spending time together.

What are you thankful for this week? Link up below and read and comment on the posts. 

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  1. This week as I saw a sign or a link (not sure which) I thought, I don't even know if I have ever gone to a rodeo.
    There was a gopher snake skin in our yard this week.
    Your "thinking time and acting time" lining up made me smile. So true. Knocking on someone's door at 3 a.m. might not be so welcome, unless it was one of those situations when you "just knew" it was the time to act right then.
    It is cool here again today, too.

    1. I've been to at least one rodeo before, but I can't remember how long ago it was--it might have been pre-children.
      What I need is thinking time, REMEMBERING time, then acting time! :-)

  2. What fun that festival must be! This is Louisiana, where there is a festival somewhere in the state every single weekend of the year. Yes, really. We love to "pass a good time!"

    1. Strawberry Days was a lot of fun. I learned that next year will be the centennial year, though, so I imagine it will be a really big celebration!

      It sounds like Louisiana does know how to "pass a good time," which, by the way, is a new phrase to me. :-)

  3. Lovely thankfuls! I'm interested in your information as I'm researching old articles for a story.

    1. I will be posting the article (hopefully) this week, but in general, is a subscription site that grants access to thousands of newspaper archives. There is a free 7-day trial you could take to see if it would be worth the subscription cost. It's been great for me!
      Additionally, though, you can find lots of family history resources (for free, and including a British newspapers archive) at Family History Centers located all over the world. Here's a link of resources available:
      If you type your location into the search bar at this page, the nearest Family History Center location will pop up:
      Good luck with your research!

  4. The weather is surely one of the stranger manifestations of alteration of the climate systems. Here in the Northeast, the weather has been 30 to 45 days 'behind'. And then other places, it skews the other direction. The weirdest thing (and maybe its just perception as opposed to reality) the specificity of weather is really marked, as in raining on two streets, dry on the next 6, then... rain. lol
    The festival sounds like fun and, of course, visits surely are.
    Have a good week.

    1. We were in the 60s for the weekend, but the forecast is for the upper-80s to around 90 later this week. It's as if summer said, "Oh, oops, I'm late!"
      I've noticed the specificity of weather here in the winter: the street gets covered in snow in front of our house/driveway, but is clear in front of our neighbor's (and it's not a man-made difference.) Weird.

  5. This was a lovely post, Kristi! The contentment with your new home and community shines through your words. The Strawberry fest does indeed sound like fun, and that house you pictured was just amazing. I wish I had the talent and motivation to do something so creative! I enjoy rodeos too, at least the bullriding part, though I am usually cheering for the bulls because I'm not sure of the mindset of those who choose to do this. I agree though, if a rider is injured the place goes silent and many prayers are offered. It is amazing that so often they are able to get up and walk away. I envy you your cooler Summer days there, but you have "done your time" in the hot regions, and perhaps someday will find me living in cooler, greener places too. In the mean time I am thankful for AC. I am also thankful that I have not (yet anyway) torn my hair out. For some reason all weekend and again today I am having major problems with commenting on WordPress blogs, with my comments posting and then disappearing. Usually I have issues with Blogger, so this is a switch and I hope tech support will be able to help me. Blessings to you and John in the week ahead!

  6. I love strawberries! The Festival was no doubt chock full of all things strawberry :) It sounds as if you have a problem with deer nibbling on plants and flowers and such. Of course I'd rather deal with them than snakes, even the "good" ones, lol Enjoy the more reasonable summer time temperatures :) Sustained temps over a 100 gets old pretty quickly.
    How fun to connect with friends from the old neighborhood. Company can provide a pleasant break from the day to day.


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