Weather has been a lifelong passion for me; while my husband and 4 kids all in college and beyond, one now married, have patiently gone along with me!
By: PugetSoundPost, 2:15 PM GMT on June 05, 2014
June 21, 10:15 PM
Happy Summer Solstice! Ahhh, the first day of summer, and the longest day of the year too! There are sure a lot of months when we wish for this day. It was a nice one for us – sunny under a partially filtered sky and a high of 76. Unfortunately, other than to water my garden, I wasn’t out in it very much.
An update on my daughter’s knee: it has been diagnosed as a dislocated knee cap. No surgery for now, but a few weeks of PT and a big brace on her leg. We actually don’t know too much yet on how long this may take to really heal – a month was one estimate, but not too sure how much healing or mobility improvement was meant by that guess. Now she is at higher risk of this happening again, unfortunately. So summer plans are altered quite a bit for her, but not everything. I will write a bit more about her soon.
Here on the first day of summer I will give my little solar stats:
Sunrise: 5:10 AM ---- Sunset: 9:10 PM (PDT)
(losing 4 seconds tomorrow)
June 18, 7:30 AM
I wrote a post here yesterday, but suddenly “poof!” it was lost and I could not face starting over. So I decided to come back later and in the interim I have a different post to write anyway.
First, our weather has changed over what we did have for quite a few weeks during spring. It was a pretty nice spring overall – warmer, sunnier, and even drier than usual – at least for parts of it. We did have “record-setting” rains earlier in the spring, but it never really felt so much that way to me. Spring is usually pretty wet. By mid May the rains quit and it was quite dry for a few weeks. Then about a week ago it changed again. The clouds returned for mostly overcast days, rain was back most days, and then, naturally, it was cooler – even below average. It has never rained very hard, so it can putter along all day and not add up a whole lot, but we are now up to 1.00” even for the month of June, nearly all of that in the last week. Summer is our dry season, so this is decent with quite a bit of the month left to go. This morning is another overcast day. I do think the sun may come out this afternoon.
We have another college graduate in the family! Last weekend was the big commencement for my son and a couple of days before that was his department ceremony. We had a little party at home and so all in all graduation kept us busy for several days. We lucked out for commencement as it didn’t really rain! Both days around it were considerably wetter, but while Saturday remained overcast and cool, it didn’t rain on us in the stadium. Yay! The ceremony went well, stayed perfectly on time, and is always a big and festive occasion. Three down and one to go! In a couple more years she should be finished.
The other news is about my daughter, off at Marines Officer Candidates School. Well, she is home, as of last night. Last week we did hear some news from her when I did not expect it – a letter and then a phone call on their liberty weekend. The first news was that over a week ago she was getting her stitches taken out of her chin. She had hit her chin on the butt of her rifle when diving to the ground in an exercise. By the time we heard of this, the stitches were long out and she seemed to be moving forward from that incident. Then we heard that last weekend she was on crutches with an undetermined knee injury. They were allowed five days of “light duty” due to medical reasons and would be evaluated along the way. It didn’t sound promising for her. They did some evals of the knee but couldn’t really find anything “wrong or broken”, but something obviously was. It was quite swollen and stiff. By yesterday they determined that she wasn’t improving enough, they suspect something is torn in the knee and they wanted her to go home, have an MRI and determine a proper diagnosis. So she was immediately shipped home, arriving in Seattle the middle of last evening. Another female was shipping out the same time, also on crutches. My daughter is able to walk on it without crutches now, but the knee is quite unstable and needs attention. We need to figure out some next steps today – which isn’t as easy as it seems – waiting for military direction on it. It seems that if she could have avoided this and hung on even to just this weekend she may have had a good shot at “making it” for this course. But we are claiming “victory” in that she was not “cut” and because she had to leave for an injury, she is eligible to re-apply. If you drop out on your own decision, or are “cut” or from some infraction, you are not able to re-apply. Not sure at this point what she may want to do with this in the future, but she seems positive about the experience and no matter what, she has had some amazing experiences that she can carry with her through life that not many others around us have ever had, and I think without a doubt she has learned a great deal about herself and what she can do. She faced some scary situations head-on and beat them, and that is a life lesson that is so very valuable.
June 5, 7:15 AM
June is here and so is summer for us. I have decided that spring, as we most typically think of it, has passed behind. The weather has kind of pushed me to the decision.
It has been a lovely spring - now going into summer. For us the record-setting rain of even early in May has stopped. We haven't had a decent rain here in some time now. May 23 was our last meaningful rain and there was not much for a good spell before that. And now nothing is in sight, maybe a chance of showers next week. Meanwhile, the days have had a lot of sunshine and mainly in the 70's (some 80's!). Seems like summertime to me!
My garden is planted and coming up. I don't have too much variety and I wanted to keep it simple. I have some bush green beans, zucchini (haven't grown this in a long while but decided to go back to it), two types of pumpkins, some tomato plants, and a few peppers. And just yesterday I finally officially finished up and planted some sunflowers. So far it all looks good and now I am hoping to keep the bunnies or any other problem out of it all. No guarantees on that. But with it growing and needing to keep up on water for it, this is a perfect sight of summer.
I have worked in the yard quite a bit and made some nice progress in an area that has not had a lot of attention. Cleared weeds, trimmed back bushes substantially, and now I am in the middle of putting down bark all along that bed. I would be finished but the store ran out of the bark I was using and so I am stopped. Plus, I have run out of time for now. But at least it looks pretty reasonable in its unfinished state and it is hard to tell unless someone looked closely.
Tis the season for graduations and we are no exception. First, we are heading this weekend to eastern Washington to attend our nephew's high school graduation in a small town. It will be nice to go, see everyone, and also just hit the road, even briefly like this. As Briar has written about, once you cross the Cascades into the east side, you are in a whole different world for landscape, climate, and economy. So it really does make you feel like you have taken a much larger trip.
Then once back, we immediately have a family birthday and then next week and weekend we have graduation events for my son, child #3, as he completes university! He is super anxious to finish and be done. The big commencement ceremony is on June 14, so not far away now. He is busy wrapping up with papers, tests and a final next week.
My youngest child, daughter, recently completed a milestone of earning her Private Pilot's license! She has been working on it for almost one and a half years. Three different instructors, two different flight schools, a lot of down time due to weather problems (months on end, actually), and a strenuous university class load have slowed the process, but now she has it! Good job!
And, there is more to her story. She plans to use her flying skills in the military. In fact, she is currently back in Virginia attending the very demanding and rigorous Marines Officer Candidates School! Her goal is to fly an aircraft for the Marines. She is in step one of the process. She must pass OCS, which for her is a two summer program - six weeks this summer and another six weeks next summer. IF she can pass all of this, then she will be commissioned when she graduates from college and then be on her way. Getting this far was rigorous to be accepted, but now she is really in it, neck deep, pretty literally. She is scheduled to return home in early July. That is if she hangs on that long, isn't injured, and can keep up with it all. Who knows. The drop out rate for various reasons is "high". And for females it is extra tough. But, she loves adventure, has a lot of capabilities, and a lot of determination so this will truly test her mettle. I'll keep you posted.
Meanwhile, here is a summary of May for us:
MAY in REVIEW
Average High Temperature: 73
Average Low Temperature: 49
High Temperature: 91 (May 1)
Low Temperature: 43 (May 11)
Wettest Day: May 3 (.90" rain)
Days of Measurable Precipitation: 15
Days of 80+ degrees: 7
Total Rain for May: 2.36"
Sunrise: 5:12 AM --- Sunset: 9:02 PM (PDT)
(gaining 1 minute, 13 seconds tomorrow)
Updated: 5:15 AM GMT on June 22, 2014