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Sunday evening’s sunset was splendid. Raindrops sparkled diamond-like on the grass–bright gifts of a sudden shower refracting the last light.  Late night-time lightening rivaled Friday’s fireworks for spectacular display and Monday morning’s mist rose from the hay fields like rain-in-reverse to dampen the sky.  There are surely other places in the world that are beautiful, but this is Champion!

Harley was able to get out of the hay field in time to make it home for the anniversary he shares with Barbara…49 this time on July the 3rd.   Most likely there will be a party next year.  Their Champion friends and family hope to see them back here together long before then.  Anniversaries and birthdays slide and fly by quickly.   Janet Burns had a birthday on Sunday the 6th.  She was seen among friends on the 4th of July at the creek having a very good time.  She probably does not know Kyra Curtis who shares her birthday and is now 14 years old.  She will be in the 8th grade at Skyline this fall.    Lyla Brown had her 6th birthday on the 7th.  She will be a first grader this fall.   Eighth grader Ceiara Carroll will be 14 on the 14th.  Some people call that a ‘golden birthday’ when the numbers are the same.  Golden birthdays stop at age 31 for some reason.  This one will be especially special for Ceiara since it is 2014.  Happy birthday everyone—sing that song to each other.

The Skyline VFD Auxiliary has a regular meeting on Wednesday the 9th in the meeting room of Henson’s Grocery and Gas in Downtown Champion.  Everyone is welcome to attend.  The meeting starts at 6:30.  The handmade cedar chest is finally there and it is a beauty.  Actually it appears to be made of white oak and lined with cedar.  It has raised panels on the front and the lid has a brass piano hinge.  The lid stays up when it is opened with special ‘friction lid stays.’ It will be just right for someone to store keepsake quilts and family heirloom table cloths and the like.

The Vanzant Picnic is coming up this Friday and Saturday night.  There is sure to be a good crowd for this event.  The popular gathering place gets a lot of good community use apart from the regular Thursday night potluck bluegrass jam.  The General will have had a big hand in the planning of the picnic so it is sure to be exciting.  In past years fellow committee members have been able to temper his influence and enthusiasm with the common sense that makes it one of the highlights of the summer festival season in the area.  It will be well worth the trip down 95 highway south of 76 or north up from 14 to go east on W. to get to the fun.  There is always good parking and golf cart shuttles for those who need them, lots of good food and music and games of all kinds.  There was talk of putting the General in a dunking booth, but since he was summarily transferred laterally from the Navy when they found out he could not swim, the committee thought better of it and just muttered among themselves that he is already ‘all wet.’

The Skyline Community Teacher’s Association is sponsoring the Skyline Community Market.

Linda’s Almanac from up at The Plant Place in Norwood informs that July’s is the Thunder Moon.  The month’s flower is the pink larkspur and the birthstone for July is the ruby.  The full moon will occur on the 12th.   The 11th will be a good day for planting crops that bear their yield above ground.  There is still time for some fast growing things like summer squash and cucumbers.  The 12th will be a good day for planting root crops.  Radishes, beets, turnips will have time to make and potatoes as well, if a person is just looking for some nice new potatoes to cook up with the green beans.  The garden is a lovely place this time of year.  Ripe tomatoes are coming off the vines already, though some are saying that they are having a hard time with them rotting as they ripen.  That may have to do with the unusual amount of rain in the area.  Every year is different and there are plenty of old time gardeners around who might be able to answer some of the questions that worry the neophyte.  Sometimes the old folks know the answer and sometimes they will just make something up in order to enjoy the fleeting attention of the young people who seem so busy these days.  At least one household has suddenly become very quiet as the young ones have all gone back to the city.  It is time for a nap!

Busy was the watch word down at the creek for the 4th of July.  Children were in and out of the cold water catching enormous crawdads, investigating bugs and snakes and critters of all kinds between filling their plates with mounds of perfect summer-time food.  Old friends who rarely see each other had leisurely visits under the trees catching up with a year’s worth of happenings.  There were some who had attended the Old Tree Huggers Jamboree back on the Summer Solstice and had information to relate about mutual acquaintances seldom seen.  The prevailing sentiment was one of gratitude.  Everyone seems glad that they are doing as well as they are and happy for the joys and accomplishments of family and friends.  “There’s a time in each year that we always hold dear, good old summer time; with the birds and tree-es, and sweet scented breezes, good old summer time.  When your day’s work is over, then you are in clover and life is one beautiful rhyme.  No trouble annoying, each one is enjoying the good old summer time.”  In Champion—Looking on the Bright Side!

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