06 September 2009

End of Summer Adventures!

Well, the end of the summer has officially arrived with the start of school and the passing of Labor Day! Even though I love being a student, I must admit that I am very sad about the sun setting sooner, the temperatures dropping ever so slightly, and my tan disappearing. My summer has been very busy, BUT I have had some awesome fun over the past few weeks!

On August 28 - an absolutely beautiful Friday night! - I went to the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks to attend the last concert of their outdoor concert series. And here's the real fun - it was a BLUEGRASS show! The Lonesome Road Band kept a pretty large crowd entertained on the Great Lawn with old spiritual hymns, traditional bluegrass songs, and some songs that AREN'T considered traditional bluegrass (Jimi Hendrix anyone?).

I had never been to the Botanical Gardens before, and I was truly amazed at how beautiful everything was - the colors, the flowers! They have paths that wind around 10 different gardens, including a Vegetable and Herb Garden (complete with tomatoes, peppers, and squash!), a Shade Garden, a Children's Garden, and a Japanese Garden. I can't wait to become a member! Throughout the fall, the Botanical Garden will offer events that you don't want to miss. I am quite excited about the Chefs in the Garden coming up on October 8!

In previous posts, I have mentioned that I have a Bucket List. Well, I completed one of my "smaller" Bucket List items! I learned to can, made squash relish, and entered it into the Washington County Fair! When I walked in to enter my relish, the place was PACKED with people. Hundreds of jars of jellies, relishes, and pickles lined the shelves in Thompson Hall at the Fairgrounds.

As excited as I was about entering my relish in the fair, the excitement did not come without its problems. After the judging, my relish got lost! I was so sad, thinking that I would never see my relish or ribbon, but the nice ladies at Thompson Hall found it! Thanks so much to all of them for their PATIENCE with my inexperience and confusion. I got second place!

The end of summer would not be complete with the annual Clothesline Fair at the Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park. Over 180 vendors from all over the state gathered at the park. People were packed in there! Sadly, I missed my favorite part of the Clothesline Fair this year...the square dancing! I ran into one of my old teachers from Fayetteville High School, Dr. Gilda Pierce. Dr. Pierce, along with her sister and mother, make and sell some truly fabulous purses!

As I watch the leaves begin to change colors, I feel excited about the coming months. Summer '09 has been great, and I look forward to more exciting trips in the fall!

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