End of Summer Snippets

The following is a random assortment of end of summer snippets. I’m admittedly sad over the dearly departing summer… but I guess I need to take the advice from the sunflower (see below).



Advice from a sunflower:

Be rooted

Keep your face towards the sun and let the shadows fall away

Bloom where you’re planted

Spread cheer

Share what you have with those in need- even the poor goldfinch deserves some seed

Take pleasure in the present season

-credits to my dear mother

A Harvester’s Prayer

Dear Heavenly Father, this morning as I take my spot in the crew lineup and we embark on #fallharvest18 , I come before you with a smile on my face and a prayer on my heart. Go with us this season, Lord, and provide: Patience when the sun is hot, the field is muddy, or the job is intense. Strength when the day runs into night and seems to stretch endlessly on. Grace when differing opinions arise, we make mistakes, or we’ve heard that same joke 1000 times before. Help us to glorify You. Thank you for this time of year, the chance to enjoy Your beautiful creation and for the privilege of working the land with some of my favorite people. Please keep us safe. Be near to each of us who are part of Your Crew whether we pursue a literal or a spiritual harvest, that at the end of that final Harvest Season, we can hear those words “ Well done, thou good and faithful servant. Enter in and find rest”. In Jesus’ Worthy Name I pray, Amen

And finally- a poem from my childhood:

Barefoot Days– Rachel Field

In the morning, very early,

That’s the time I love to go

Barefoot where the fern grows curly

And the grass is cool between each toe,

On a summer morning – O!

On a summer morning!

That is when the birds go by

Up the sunny slopes of air,

And each rose has a butterfly

Or a golden bee to wear;

And I am glad in every toe –

Such a summer morning – O!

Such a summer morning!

Bonus Pic:

I went trucking with my dad for the first time in way too long. We had such a fun trek to North Carolina with a load of soybeans. Although a lot has changed since the days he always had a daughter or two riding with him- a lot remains the same- he still bursts forth in the most random assortments of songs, drinks Diet Mtn Dew like it’s going out of style, and keeps a well stocked snack bar within reach. 💞

“That It Might Be Fulfilled”

The cows didn’t pay much attention to me. I went plodding through the barnyard, switched the gates around, and went through all the same motions that happen twice every day at milking time. Motions that come second nature for me, yet have not been my world for over 4 years now.

I go for months without setting foot in the barn, and somehow I’m never quite prepared for the nostalgia that hits me.

The sentimental side of me enjoyed the trip down Memory’s Lane-missing the old days of working with Julia, stumbling out of bed in the middle of the night to check on the maternity lot to find a new calf, bedding calves and mixing feed- the daily dairy demands.

But then the practical side of me took back over and reminded me that I’d been on Memory’s Lane long enough- that Sherm is a much bettter dairyman, and that I was terrible at getting up for the morning milking, and recurring back issues often left me skimping out on my share of the workload-while my sweet family filled in… thank you for the reminder, O Practical One 🙄

Before I completely left my sentimental journey, I analyzed why I miss those days. And I came up with a conclusion: because I know what happens next. I know how the next chapter goes: what happens to the key players, and how each puzzle piece fits together, and the sheer joy of living each adventure.

Recently I’ve been challenged by a recurring phrase in my devotions. Matthew’s stories about the early life of Christ keep stating “that it might be fulfilled.” Jesus’s life was full of obstacles that directed the story of His life “that it might be fulfilled” (like the midnight flight to Egypt).

Do you ever look at the crazy turn of events in your life and question? Sometimes I think the rough jagged edges of the current puzzle piece weren’t made to fit into the picture my life is telling. But I believe that God carefully places them, and occasionally allows me to look back with understanding. I love those reminders of God’s wisdom, faithfully writing my story.

This has been a rambling post-but I hope you’ve followed my thought pattern: God directs the steps of our lives, organizing details that are so far above our ways, to have us where He needs is to be, to be of most service to Him… that it might be fulfilled.

Family Vacation 2018

May you find peace with whatever shape your current puzzle piece is, knowing that the finished product will be a masterpiece …


Bonus pics:

I haven’t been on the road much recently, but I’ve got a few pics to share (the others from this post came from the dusty archives 😅) I had a day trip to Mt Jackson, where our hosts lived in this beautiful old 1770s era plantation Home. This house doubled as a hospital in the Civil War and had visible blood stains on the floor 🤕. But what really stood out to me was the stairs leading to the slave quarters, where the current home owner had researched the slaves who’d lived there, and the price they’d brought at market, and she’d commemorated them on the steps… real people, real stories, never dying souls…

A dog’s premonition 🐾

I think jealousy is the root of the problem.

In fact I’m fairly confident about this. Allow me to present my case: I’m Detroit Snappenbarker Mendoza, farm manager. And I think that’s what got us off on the wrong foot. Well, that and the fact that the Horst gals refer to me as “the best ol boy”. It eats at them. And I won’t say that I don’t understand it, but it doesn’t change the fact: I was farm manager before any of the brother in laws showed up.

And I’ve overheard the exact same conversation with all of them “yeh he’s a nice enough dog, but I don’t think he’s very smart.” And while the girls protest, they never look at me quite the same. Except Ken- her loyalties have yet to be tested, so she doesn’t really count.

I faithfully soldier on. This farm depends on me.

For instance: I could tell that it was going to be left up to Rolo and I even before I noticed the pile of “OBX bound” boxes by the front door. Plus it happens every August, they go away and vacate- and leave the place in our capable hands, er I mean paws. 🐾 But this time- I sensed trouble on the horizon. And no matter how hard I scrubbed my face on the grass in the backyard, I couldn’t shake it. Rolo saw me and tried the same thing. And we ended up in similar predicaments. Flaming red irritated eyeballs, and still that dark cloud on the horizon. The family noticed the red eyes, but not the cloud. So Ken rushed to town and bought eyedrops and every time I turn my back, someone is sneaking up on me and shooting drops into my eyes. Actually make that 2 somebody’s I can easily outsmart/outrun just 1 somebody (hehe take that “he’s not very intelligent” naysaying boys 🙄)

So basically part of the fam rushed off on vacation leaving instructions for the ones vacating later to “check on the dogs” Good thing it was 2 of them, because I wasn’t about to take those drops sitting down. They tried to convince to come into the house, mind you, to take my meds. Nothing doing. They tried to trap me in the garage and I was spinning-wheels-backwards out the door when Deb caught a leg and I was hung. Dumb drops.

But then the dark clouds on the horizon came closer and closer and closer. As night fell on the Homefront, it became dark. So black dark that I couldn’t even see a whisker in front of my face. Rolo was beside me whimpering and carrying on. I tried to be brave and reassure her, but there was something dreadfully wrong. And we were facing it all alone. We survived that dark,dark night, but the rising of the sun did nothing to shake that cold black feeling.

Way off in the distance, I could hear a little brown pickup with a little blonde pup with the hammer down, heading up our road. A small ray of sunshine began to pierce the dark cloud. Up the lane shot Em and River. Rolo and I fell all over ourselves welcoming them. Help had arrived. We were saved! I kept a safe distance because I wasn’t about to hang around for more eye drops, and Em went in to casually open the garage door….

And it wouldn’t work. Sometime in the past 24 hours, the current had quit and there was our entire place becoming room temperature. Eye drops and Veterinarian assignments were forgotten, as Em changed into Supermanwoman/electrician and between both of us, order and current was restored to the place.

See why they keep me around? Admittedly, I’d have been ecstatic to help them empty all those freezers once they returned from vacation, but I chose the high road…

I remain, the ever faithful farm manager,

Detroit Snappenbarker Mendoza