Two words describe this past week, “hot” and “sticky”.  We can all tell we are getting close to the 4th of July due to the weather and all of the big, flashy firework tents going up everywhere.  I remember last year, we were heading into the drought and no one we knew dared to shoot off any fireworks.  Thankfully, this year, it’s a completely different story!  We are already hearing fireworks filling the air in the evenings all over Olga.

It seems the raccoons are feeling frisky lately.  There have been several reports of them coming right up onto people’s porches, getting into any pet food that has been left out and also being an outright danger to the local chicken population.  We had one in our front yard that was so big, that in the dark, I couldn’t tell if it was a raccoon or a fox.  It wandered away before I could let the dog out of the house.  It sure was a brave raccoon.  When it heard me open the door, it turned to watch me.  I think it was wondering if I was going back inside so it could continue its mischief.   In regards to mischief, that is about all I can report on from Olga for this week.

The days have been long and hot, the resident cows spend their afternoons standing chin deep in the ponds while the dragonflies flitter from one stalk of grass to another.  The Milkweed is in full bloom and the butterflies are out in full force.  The Joe-Pye weed is taller than I am, which isn’t saying much, and for all of you wild-crafters, the Mullein is blooming too.

The big news of the week for us was the harvest of enough cherries to make a cherry pie.  You can tell it doesn’t take much to make us happy.   Cherry pie is extremely easy to make, especially if you get store bought crust.  Our recipe is to use 4 cups of fresh, pitted cherries, 2 cups sugar, ¼ cup flour, 1/8 teaspoon salt and mix it all together in a large bowl.  Pour it into a pie crust and dot with about 2 Tablespoons of butter.  Cover with a top crust and be sure to cut a few holes in the top or you can get all fancy with it and cut it into strips and weave the top crust.  Fancy crusts are too much work for me, and then the cherries bubble all over it anyway so it isn’t very pretty in the end.  Bake the pie at 450° for about 10 minutes, then turn the oven down to 350° for another 30 minutes.  YUM!  I would really enjoy hearing what your favorite cherry recipe is.  You can email them to me at hillsofolga@gmail.com.  I wonder if they are good in a smoothie…

Sunday evening, we enjoyed the “super” moon.  No raccoons, foxes or other critters to report, only a beautiful, light breeze and a gorgeous moon.  I hope everyone took the time to go out and look at it.

One final bit of news is that Olga is in need of volunteer firefighters.  If anyone is interested, they should contact Elaine at 417-683-9903.

May you have a blessed week, get out and enjoy these Ozark hills with your family, there is so much to enjoy!