About Blog Title...

As a child, it was one of my greatest delights to visit my grandparents in the spring when the whip-poor-wills began to call. Grandma and Grandpa lived in a remote valley of the Ozark Mountains where there were trees a plenty, and, seemingly, a whip-poor-will, or two, in each one.
My grandmother insisted that a whip-poor-will's call was not "whip-poor-will," but instead, "chip-butter-white-oak." I would listen really hard trying to hear it exactly as she said it was, but all I could hear was "whip-poor-will, whip-poor-will,..." But, I never let on to her.
I remember my grandpa watching and listening, with an amused look on his face, to one of these listening sessions. Shortly after that he began to call me, just for fun, "Chip Butter." It is a name I am proud to wear for I still love to hear that long, lonesome call on a warm summer's eve. And, sometimes, when I listen really, really hard, it seems I can hear quite clearly, "chip-butter-white-oak, chip-butter-white-oak..."

Monday, July 30, 2018

A Summer Party...

The girls were ready.  (Note, a few revisions were made...new eyes, hair, and bonnet.  The farther I got into this thing, the more I expected of myself!)

The table was set...

Each girl took her place...

And, one special guest waited outside the door...

After the other guests arrived, there just wasn't time for pictures.  It was a luncheon affair, followed by a punch party (some of the young attendees preferred punch over tea).  

For my part, it was good practice working with needle and thread.  And, now, I am remembering what a tiring thing these family gatherings can be.   And, to think, Christmas will be here before we know it.


Monday, July 16, 2018

Summer Sun...


Great is the sun, and wide he goes
Through empty heaven without repose;
And in the blue and glowing days
More thick than rain he showers his rays.

~Robert Louis Stevenson

I have been sprucing things up just in case the weather cools off enough for our little garden party.  But it seems "Summer Sun" has other plans and "bares to all the garden ground, and sheds a warm (hot) and glittering look among the ivy's inmost nook."

Five little dolls will decorate the table, along with flowers from the garden.  When the party is over, the dolls will go home with the youngest girls, and the flowers will stay on my table for a few more days. (I can hardly stand to cut a flower from my garden.  None of the flowers stand up and say, "Here, cut me!"  And, just as surely as I choose one to cut, a bee or butterfly will fly to its rescue.  Really, they do!)

Monday, July 9, 2018

The 365th...

"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks."  ~John Muir

Today, Millie and I are celebrating 365 consecutive days of walking the Chip Butter Trail. Many of our friends~ the deer, the great blue heron, a large red-tailed hawk, and a beautiful indigo bunting~ were all there this morning, scattered somewhere along the trail to see us through.  We needed no other fanfare, for the song of the mockingbird was quite enough, and oh-so-fine!

Walking is not something new to me, for it has been almost a way of life for many years.  It's just that I had never walked every day for a year before.   It wasn't always easy to get up and get out there in all kinds of weather ~ in wind and rain and snow, and scorching summer heat.  But, as William Morris said, "How I love the earth and the seasons and the weather and all things that deal with it and all that grows out of it."       

The hardest week was the first week of January when it was very cold and a fierce north wind was blowing night and day.  I wrote on January 1: "The ponds are iced over, but the cattle are still able to break the ice along the edges.  There were three baby calves born today, but they seemed okay, despite the extreme cold.  The Great Blue Heron was fishing along the shallow creeks where there was running water, and the Little Garden feeder was full of birds, both blue and red.  We took the Woods Trail today, avoiding the open meadow, and covered our faces."  The "We" is Millie and I.  Actually she didn't cover her face, but I covered mine.

I continued on January 2:  "Day's length 9 hours and 52 minutes.  A cold day with no sunshine.  The ice is thick on the ponds.  I fear Millie might run out onto it, and if she should break through the ice,  I would not be able to get her out.  It was so cold this morning that both of her ears were standing quite erect."

Now what?  Keep walking, of course.  But, come next winter when the cold winds blow, I think I may just have to sit those days out.

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

A Garden Party...

"The gentle rain which waters my beans and keeps me in the house today is not drear and melancholy, but good for me too..."  ~Henry David Thoreau

"...And now, in the morning, how good it is to see the brilliant light of the blessed summer day, always brightest after rain, and to see how every tree and plant is full of new life and abounding gladness: and to feel one's own thankfulness of heart, and that it is good to live, and all the more good to live in a garden."  ~Gertrude Jekyll (1843 - 1932) from a 1900 issue of Home and Garden

If I were to have a garden party, it would surely be now while the sunflowers are so grand.  And, I might just do that...have a party!