Sunday, August 15, 2010

Late summer in small town Virginia

We've had an amazingly hot and dry summer this year. I think we had the hottest and driest June on record, quite a counterpoint to the snowy and cold winter! I believe we had something like 40 days in a row of above-90 degrees temperature. Thankfully, i have central air conditioning...i got it years ago because Lesley had feline asthma and her vet said she'd be much better off if the windows could be kept closed--and the only way it would be bearable to have the windows closed would be to have air conditioning. The cats have been feeling warm but pretty comfortable.
Fuzzy laying on the 3rd desk's book shelf, keeping me company while i telecommute

Sylvie checcking out Farmers Market bounty: peppers, Napa cabbage, corn, 2 different mixes of cherry tomatoes, new potatoes (in bag), radishes

Sylvie staking out my desk chair, which the cats have pretty thoroughly trashed. Why buy a new one if that'll get all shredded, too?

Louie snuggled into his "Hairy Blankie"

Gingy relazing on the kitchen doormat (yes, she's the one who has peed repeatedly on the back door)
Another fine part of summer here is my town's tradition of offering outdoor concerts every Saturday evening in a joint partnership with Bluemont Concerts. The musicians set up on the sidewalk across the street and everyone sets up blankets and lawn chairs on the lawn of the Warren Green building, a Civil War era building that now houses some County offices, next to the County courthouse complex. It's wonderful listening to all kinds of great musicians in such a family-friendly atmosphere. Different community groups provide the refreshments each week and get to keep the's like having a bake sale with a musical accompaniment!

Last week my quilt group provided the refreshments. We lucked was a gorgeous clear warm evening, not dreadfully hot and humid as so many other Saturday nights had been, and the music was fantastic--the Martinsburg Jazz Orchestra, a group of about 8 guys (from an ensemble of 16) playing swing and big band music.

Here's what it looked like from the back of the crowd, as the lights just started coming on.

Martinsburg Jazz Orchestra entertains as night falls
One thing that doesn't show in the picture are the bats and swallows flittering around overhead catching the bugs who are attracted to the lights.

Here are two of my friends from the quilt group with our table of goodies. In addition to the usual homemade cookies and brownies, bottled water, iced tea, and lemonade, we also had trail mix, pretzels, homemade caramel corn, spiced nuts and spicy popcorn both custom made by one of the group, and a peck of peaches picked that very day by a member who hadn't had time to bake. By the end of the evening we only had a few peaches and a few bags of trail mix and cookies left...a very successful evening for us. And so much fun, too!
Quilters and goodies for sale at the Bluemont concert


  1. Those concerts look like a wonderful tradition to have.
    There's a door whizzer at my house if I could only figure out WHO...


  2. What a wonderful day. I'm glad you had such a good time. It sounds fantastic.

  3. I read the title of your post on my dashboard and all I could think was "HOT Late Summer in a Small Town in Virginia"! It's been awful here too - although definitely not as hot as where you are (and we've probably received more rain?) The cats have been miserable - except for Franklin - heat just doesn't seem to affect him.

    The outdoor concerts sound really nice - we have them here too, but have only been to one this year.

    P.S. Dobby is the one who pees on doormats at our house! He is so well behaved 99% of the time that we just put up with it.

  4.'s not been HOT here...It's been Blazing...there, now I feel better....I've been under the weather and not able to get to the FM, maybe next week I can have a bounty just like yours.

  5. It hasn't been horrible here until today but even one day is enough--we don't have any air conditioning--I hate the heat!!!

  6. It has been terrible hot here. 100 plus for the last 10 days and more to come. That concert in the park sounds like a lot of fun!

  7. There's nothing as nice as an outdoor musical concert in summer. And I love jazz.

    Lovely to see pics of the cats too.

    Jan (Milo and Alfie's mom)

  8. Same stretch of 90+ days here although there has been rain in short, heavy bursts.
    We're thiankful for A/C but even at that we're thinking "Enough summer."
    The cats find cool places, sometimes seem a bit bored. No birds nesting just outside the door to provide entertainemnt.

  9. You are so lucky to have bats! We have lost so many here in New England.
    Fun to see your kitties being all summertime lazy-like.
    And fun to read of the concert.
    This has been a rough summer, weather wise. I hope it is not the beginning of a new "normal".

  10. Thank you for visiting our blog. Hope your Mom is doing much better and enjoying her new job.

    Ms. P and Cinza