After spending lots of years in the Texas Inferno they call Summer, we are so grateful to be here now. Cool winds, warm sunshine with highs in the 70’s brings everyone out to the beach and parks. And we join in. We are enjoying picnics at the Peace Arch park right on the border with Canada. The Peace Arch is a beautiful monument celebrating the peaceful border we share with our neighbors to the north. (Google it and see for yourselves). A fabulous park sits on a ridge top over looking the Salish Sea and the San Juan Islands in the distance. Leslie packs a lovely lunch, and we head for the park grounds and spread it all out on a picnic table with the best view. A rose garden sits next to a big building on the property which houses the American Kitchen and restrooms – all very clean and civil. There are signs next to each rose vine with their name – “Ketchup and Mustard” is our fave – it’s a bright red rose with a yellow center. Manicured flower beds with hundreds of bright faces are surrounded by lush green grass and pieces of art stashed in the corners. This park sits on the north edge of Blaine. If you walk across the street, you are in Canada. And lots of people have been doing that, according to the Border Patrol. It’s weird to see their green and white squad cars hiding on the back roads watching for traffic and the bad guys. The berry season has begun, and signs are out on the roadside: Cherries, $2 a box. Farmers have “the Ticklers” out now, and they are combing the raspberry fields bringing in what will be a record harvest, they say. The blackberry bushes are all in flower now and will soon be producing. And there’s lots of fabulous produce at the Farmer’s Market every Saturday in downtown Bellingham. This is our favorite event. The city has a wonderful building set aside for all the farmers to bring their crops to market. Fresh bread, wood fired pizza and samosas are all snack and lunch treats. Entertainers sing, dance and juggle and keep the kids entertained. I put my buck in their hat, too. It’s fun, and the crowd is happy and curious about all the other booths and products for sale. Lavender is a hot item now, and it grows all over. The best deal I saw was “a shelf of berries” at the Rabbit Fields Farm booth (motto: A hop to the better); which included a pint of golden raspberries, a pint of red raspberries, a pint of mahogany red cherries, and a pint of blueberries – 13 bucks and it was so beautiful you hated to disturb it, but you will. I had never seen the golden variety before. Strawberries are also coming in now, and the corn is almost knee high. We’ve had no rain for 27 days, and the big sprinklers are on in many fields. Leslie’s little farm has produced a zucchini and lots of flowers and buds on the beans, tomatoes, and cukes. And she has lovely flowers in pots front and back…Periwinkles, petunias…one or both and I can’t remember which is which.
I’m working on the 2018 Datebook now. Please check the expiration date on your mailing label as Leslie tells me it’s time to clean up the list and many of you are way overdue…Add $25 when you renew if you want a Datebook and I’ll put your copy into the mail or an email as soon as it’s done. I’ve laid out the first three months of 2018, and the Skywatch is easy going. The only problem so far is Mercury turning Retrograde March 22 – April 15. Of course, that’s when everyone is doing their taxes. Venus and Mars will also Retrograde in 2018. There’s another stress marker bearing down right now – read the Skywatch report on August 1 immediately, and you’ll be better prepared to deal with any problems that come up over the next few weeks.