You awaken to sunshine streaming in your window accompanied by wafts of fresh, clean air gently blowing through the screen.
You realize it was so cool during the night, you pulled the quilt up over yourself and you’re snuggling inside it because it feels a little chilly.
No harsh buzzing of the alarm clock rings in your ears because it’s your day off work, but you do catch the lilting melody of song birds coming from outside.
You leave your place of slumber and glance out the open window to see the most glorious baby blue sky decorated with bits of cottony fluff here and there. A dazzling sun gleams from the east causing the yard to look resplendent in verdant trees and grass.
The temperature hovers around the upper 60’s with an expected high in the mid 70’s. Throwing open the patio door and kitchen windows invites a cooling breeze into the house refreshing enough to compel you to linger at the kitchen table with your soothing hot cup of tea. You observe a tiny sparrow hopping along the deck railing and notice butterflies chasing each other, flitting hither and yon.
There’s a faint rustle of leaves as the cooling wind blows through the trees. You hear cicadas chirping, morning song birds, and occasionally a car driving by. But that is all. It’s peaceful and serene. It’s beautiful and picturesque. It’s life here at Mama’s Empty Nest.
And that’s my idea of a picture perfect morning.
That’s what it’s been like here the last few days and I can’t express how much I enjoy mornings like these. Quote anthologist Terri Guillemets wrote this: “I used to love night best but the older I get the more treasures and hope and joy I find in mornings.” I couldn’t agree with her more, especially on mornings like these.
Yesterday all day I found myself singing “Oh What a Beautiful Morning” from the musical Oklahoma. I’ve actually lived in that state and while I’m sure native Okies believe their mornings are the most spectacular, I beg to differ. Rising to incredibly hot temperatures isn’t my idea of a beautiful morning, and that’s what I remember most about summertime there. I’d much rather sing about mornings right here in my home state.
Treated to a repeat performance of my picture perfect morning today, my mind’s card catalog of songs brought up “It’s a Beautiful Morning” by The Rascals.
“It’s a beautiful mornin’ ahhh
I think I’ll go outside a while an jus’ smile
Just take in some clean fresh air boy
Ain’t no sense in stayin’ inside
If the weather’s fine an’ you got the time
It’s your chance to wake up and plan another brand new day
It’s a beautiful mornin’ ahhh”
Morning songs just keep playing in my head on this magnificent Page 11, Chapter 8, in my book of Opportunity. Cat Stevens’ “Morning Has Broken” comes to mind. As soon as I run through that song, a Herman’s Hermits tune, “I’m Into Something Good,” follows with “Woke up this morning, feelin’ fine, there’s something special on my mind.”
When I dig a little deeper in my song file, I find myself singing “Good Mornin” from that marvelous old movie, Singing in the Rain. That tune reminds me of crooning my version to our awakening children when they were young: “Good mornin’, Good mornin’, You slept the whole night through, Good mornin’, Good mornin’ to you!”
And lastly, I find myself humming an old English folk song called “Early One Morning.” I don’t recall when I first heard that song because it seems like it’s always been in my memory. “Early one morning, just as the sun was rising, I heard a young maid singing in the valley below. Oh, don’t deceive me, Oh never leave me. How could you use a poor maiden so?”
What about you? What morning song are you singing on this fine day?
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I’m dogged by the dog days of summer, dog gone it!
Most of the month of August is behind us, yet some hot summer weather visited my neck of the woods this week.
Yesterday my trusty thermometer hanging outside my kitchen window reported it was 90 degrees at our house.
Did you ever wonder from where that term “dog days” came? I have. My research defines dog days of summer as the hottest, most sultry days of the season.
This period of time is supposedly when the Dog Star, Sirius, rises at the same time as the sun, at least that’s what the ancients believed. In the northern hemisphere of the world where we live, it is the period of time between early July and early September, but in my mind I always think of dog days in August.
Apparently you can also use the term to describe “an event that is very hot or stagnant marked by dull lack of progress” or “a period marked by lethargy, inactivity, or indolence.”
That says it all about dog days to me! When the weather is hot and humid and the air seems stagnant, I am dull, lethargic, and inactive. I definitely have a profound lack of progress, and I wouldn’t describe myself as dogged about anything because I don’t want to exert myself.
If you haven’t guessed by now, I’m really not a summer person. The heat and humidity sometimes make me feel sick as a dog. Perhaps I should be dogmatic about summer. If I were not so indolent and feeling a bit more creative, I’d write a funny doggerel about summer. But I can’t, I’m lazy and too dog tired.
However, there are some aspects of this season that I do enjoy. For a few evenings this summer, it’s been cool enough to open the windows and our French door to the deck. I savor cool evening breezes ushering in fresh air, the kind that bestows upon you a graceful respite from air conditioning.
Sitting outside on the deck in the quietness of the evening is relaxing. Stars glimmer in the dark summer night sky and the radiant moon “hits your eye like a big pizza pie.” (That’s from the song “That’s Amore.”)
Breathing in the fresh evening air, I close my eyes and just listen. No traffic noises. No barking dogs. No people having loud conversations. No loud music or televisions blaring. Just crickets serenading me with their summer song is all I hear. I say, “Bravo!” to the free concert they provide to me.
And that, my friends, is why I love living in the country– even in the summer time.