June and its Divine Pleasures


June Daisies

“In these divine pleasures permitted to me of walks in the June night under moon and stars, I can put my life as a fact before me and stand aloof from its honor and shame.”
~  Ralph Waldo Emerson, Journals  

I’m quite enjoying finding these quotes for my monthly updates and then matching my titles to them.  And I love Emerson’s quotes …. they’re always so deep and expansive …

June Seedlings

So how did May shape up for me?  Well honestly, it was rather lots of fun.  I spent tons of time gardening and planted I don’t know how many seeds and seedlings and shovelled yards and yards of dirt.  I feel like I’m back in shape again.  In my garden, I have kale, collard greens, potatoes, leeks, brussel sprouts, cabbage, beets, peas, cucumber, squash, Swiss chard, tomatoes, carrots, bush beans and purple sprouting broccoli.  I see prices rising for food in the store, so growing my own seems like a good idea.  Plus it’s so enjoyable.  Let’s hope I can say the same when the season is over; hopefully my “wins” will be more than my “fails”.  I was sad to see very few bees out this spring which I’m not sure is due to the cooler than normal weather or the “murder hornets”, an invasive species that has lately come from Asia.  On a positive note, I’ve had a little bird who has been following me around and is eating all the bugs that I’ve dug up in the garden.  He’s a funny little guy and will come right up to me, although if I make a move towards him, he’ll fly a short ways away. Ah, the joys of spring!

This month was somewhat encouraging for reading, as well.  I finished The Mystery of the Blue Train by Agatha Christie as I continue my Christie challenge, I started The Golden Bough for a read-along suggested by Jean at Howling Frog Books, I finally found my copy of The Lord of the Flies for my Classic Club Spin and finished it in the allotted time, and I’m getting prepared to read The Mysteries of Udolpho for the read-along beginning this month.  Otherwise I’ve actually been looking at my Books of Summer and planning, which is more than I usually do. Yay, me!

June Peony Book Pocketwatch

For June, I’m going to keep on gardening.  I’m finding it very relaxing and satisfying to see those new shoots sprout up in the garden.  I’m also going to be doing alot of cooking and discovering new recipes to share with friends.  I really do need to get my food blog back up and running again; I’ve already tested so many recipes but there”s that precious commodity of time …. Does anyone know how to get more of it? 😂  I’m also going to try to get out for more walks and rides.  It’s been inspiring to see all the people walking and riding during these COVID times and I need to join them more.  And lastly, I’ll be going back to school, starting the first course to be a registered holistic nutritionist.  I’m approaching it with excitement and trepidation, excited because I’ve been interested in food and nutrition for ages and already have quite a bit of knowledge, and apprehensive because ….. I don’t really know.  It’s not like I’m not used to school because I’m often taking university or online courses here and there.  Perhaps it’s because it’s a big commitment.  In any case, I believe I’ll enjoy the challenge.

My reading for the month is pretty well planned with first and foremost our beginning of The Mysteries of Udolpho read-along.  I should probably wait until next month to comment on it, but I’ve read a little already (today being June 3rd) and so far I’m loving it.  Radcliffe sets the scene with flair and foreshadowings and I was very impressed with some of her descriptions.  But you can feel the drama stirring within the words already and it will be fun when it truly begins.

Otherwise, I’ll still be struggling along with The Golden Bough, getting really immersed in The Last Chronicle of Barset, continuing with The Mill on The Floss and starting The Seven Dials Mystery. Can I fit another book in?  If so, I think I’ll grab To Kill A Mockingbird as I’ve been itching to read it again.

Young Girl Reading

A Young Girl Reading (1776) Jean-Honore Fragonard
~ source Wikiart

So what does June and its divine pleasures hold for you?  Any plans?  Any books you’re looking forward to?  Do tell!





Photo #1 courtesy of DreamyArt on Pixabay

Photo #2 courtesy of Jag2020 on Pixabay

23 thoughts on “June and its Divine Pleasures

  1. Sounds like a great start to summer. I wish you the best success with your gardening. I shall live through you. 😂

    A friend of mine said she noticed an absence of bees in her yard, too. All I know is we have had an increase in carpenter bees and some other smaller bee species that loves my flowering trees. I’m so afraid to water them…I feel like I’m being swarmed. So I don’t know what’s going on there.

    • It’s been a wonderful start to summer! I’ll try to post some photos if anything works out. So far with the cold weather the poor seedlings have been decimated by slugs. Ugh!

      Bees aren’t usually aggressive, at least the bees here. I always work in my garden among them and have never gotten stung. They can be curious but not nasty. Not like wasps.

      • This is true. The fear is all mine. They are aggressively swarming the flowers, and I have to duck low to give water to the roots. So long as they stay above my head, I’m fine.

        As for the slug problem, I know how frustrating that can be. We don’t have slugs but something else that eats the seedlings just as quickly. So I learned a trick when planting seeds into the ground. I cut out the bottom of a cheap plastic cup and set it into the ground where I placed the seed. When the seedling comes up, it is surrounded by the cup. For some reason, these little annoying bugs that eat seedlings cannot penetrate the cup, and the seedling survives! (Only to be decimated by some other disease or bug — but that’s another story.) Anyway, I don’t know if you’ve tried that before or if it would even be an obstacle to a slug.

        • Thanks for the tip, Ruth! I think I’m going to try to put some plastic cut pipe around some of the plants and see how that goes. That if, if they’re not eaten first!

  2. Well, sounds like you’ve got June nailed down. Hope it stays on track 😀

    If we didn’t live in a condo I might try for a little tiny garden, probably onions, peppers and/or tomatoes. One tomato plant. That would be it. But food prices are only going to rise, sadly…

    • I’ve been so good with reading lately but add in studying and I won’t be surprised if I go off track. But so far, so good.

      You don’t even have a balcony? I think it should be mandatory for all condos to have a balcony. One tomato would be fine with me. I have four and one already has blight. If you can cover them from the rain here, you can usually get them to perform adequately but rain brings blight and it’s rainy here. I paid $2.99 the other day for one organic pepper. Startling …!

      • We do have balconies, but they have to be kept clear per condo rules. It’s how the furnaces are accessed, so it doesn’t surprise me. plus, then birds tend to congregate and end up pooping all over the balcony below.

  3. we have very few bees, also… we used to have a hive out at the end of the property, but they seem to have left… our daughter raises bees for honey and she says they’re acting funny this year, even thought they’ve seen two swarms; they couldn’t capture either of them, tho… great gardening skills! admire that, yes… i’m glad you’re enjoying Udolpho; i did also… in spite of her going on at length occasionally… wonderful pictures….

    • I’m starting to see a few honeybees now. I wonder if it’s because the flowers are finally beginning to open, lol! I’ve always wanted to have a few hives myself, so I envy your daughter.

      And yes, in spite of studying getting in the way, Udolpho is going well!

  4. That is an impressive list of veg you’re growing. I hope we’ll be getting updates on your progress. Besides joining in with your Udolpho read-along (I’m only a couple of pages into the first chapter, but yes, enjoying it, too) I’m currently reading William Trevor’s Death in Summer. I’m aiming to go with instincts for this summer, and not plan ahead. It’s worked so far.

    • I’ll be sure to post a few photos. My collard greens are really doing well but the slugs are the death of some of the other plants. Sigh!

      I must say, I’m somewhat like you: I make lists …….. and then I go on instinct! 🤣

  5. What an amazing May you have had! I am so glad the garden is coming along so well and everything is looking up; both in the physical and intellectual world! I am so so impressed that you are going back to school. Just the discipline of it is more scary than anything else, but if anyone can do it, you can! So go Sister! I love Trollope (you know that by now…lol) so I am not surprised you find yourself immersed in Barchester. Hey ….if you read To Kill a Mockingbird, I am here to give you company! You know I read it once a year (affirms my belief system) and my 2020 reading is due! But no pressure; I know you have many things planned so whatever works for you best!

    • I am loving the last Barchester book. Trollope has one subject but the depth to which he goes with it is amazing! I will definitely let you know about To Kill A Mockingbird. I do want to fit it in …. perhaps July ….?? I’ll see. I’d like to get some studying under my belt before committing.

      So happy to see you back!

  6. Well, it sounds like your time is very full! My mom used to have a large vegetable garden, but as she’s gotten older, she hasn’t found it worth it to battle all the critters/pests for the trickier plants, and she’s scaled back to mostly greens, tomatoes, and green beans. We have so many small farms regionally, that getting fresh produce hasn’t been a problem.

    I’ve started The Mysteries of Udolpho! Only about 2 1/2 chapters in (time…), but it’s going well. Hopefully that keeps up; I’m not always good at reading descriptions. At least I have all summer to read!

    Good luck with all your plans!

    • I wish I had more uninterrupted time to read but it may come.

      I like that I have control over what I spray in my garden. In my course I’m learning all about the contamination of water (and I’m sure later, soil, etc.) from agriculture and it’s not good. Organic all the way!

      Thanks for your wishes, Amanda!

  7. Wow! On your gardening. That’s going to be quite the haul. We’ve got Swiss chard, some lettuces, and beans–those are all done by Jessica; I do the easy part by doing the kitchen herbs–which come back every year, so all I have to do is pull out a few weeds… 😉

    Though I do most of the cooking. So figuring out what to do with all the Swiss chard can be an issue…

    I’m way behind on The Golden Bough–and on Plutarch!–I decided I had to read some Roman history to know where he was. Plus all the other things that I get distracted into…And the library here is opening up for curbside pickup tomorrow, so there will be more bookish distractions…

    But it’s all to be enjoyed! And it sounds like you are!

    • Wow, it sounds like between the two of you, you have most things covered! Do you grow rosemary? I buy it every year and try to get it to over-winter but I think I need to protect it more. It’s just slightly too cold in winter for it to survive however just a 20 minute drive west of here, I have friends who have bushes of it and it survives perfectly! Go figure!

      I have a great recipe for Chard & Leek Soup (it doesn’t sound great but it’s AMAZING) and a recipe for Swiss Chard Apple Tart. Let me know if you’re interested …. 😉

      I’m behind on The Golden Bough too. It’s vaguely interesting but it’s not making me want to pick it up. Plus I’ve started this new cooking job which is taking more time than I’d planned, however it’s lots of fun … much more than The Golden Bough!

      Good idea to get some history behind Plutarch. I have Roman and Greek history books by Dorothy Mills. They’re aimed at high school age but they were so helpful for giving me a general understanding and base.

      Happy reading to you too!

      • I never have any luck here getting the rosemary to overwinter either but at our first house, which was just three blocks south, I did about the half the time. It’s shadier at our new house too, but we seem to be right on the edge as well. But in any case it’s not like when we lived in California where there were bushes of it.

        Both of those Swiss chard items sound like they could be very good–our two favorites are similar in a way: I do a Swiss chard and leek quiche pretty often in summer; also a Swiss chard and apple risotto. So, hmm, yes! I would be interested in either or both of those (and let me know if you’re interested in mine.)

        And a new cooking job! That could be fun, although also a challenge…

        Jean is likely to finish without us, though I haven’t yet given up!

        My computer has been being difficult lately. Hopefully this goes through…

  8. I’ve planted some seedlings up on our verandah to get more sun & avoid brush turkeys that come and dig up everything. I’ve stuck with greens & herbs that I can cut whenever i want. I would love to be self-sufficient with veges at least. I’ve been reading a few whole food plant based books on nutrition lately – experimenting to see if I can get my cholesterol down due to my bad family history!

    • You have interesting creatures to protect your plants against. Are bush turkeys better or worse than slugs, lol?! I would love to have some time to read some healthy living, growing, eating books. I used to ….. Good to hear from you, Carol!

  9. Oh, I love that quote from Emerson. Hadn’t encountered it before! Your garden post makes me jealous…I was in a real funk during planting season, so the only thing I’ve collected have been blackberries and blueberries from my bushes.

    • Argh! I have been so busy I’ve hardly had time for anything, but my garden is at least growing. I’m harvesting blueberries now too! Blackberries will definitely be much later because of the weather this year. Hope you’re having a wonderful summer and reading more than I am!

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