The Changing Seasons: July 2016

This has been a strange year. The caterpillars stripped the oaks and the sassafras trees to bare branches. A month later, it looks like springtime in our woods. The trees all have leaves again, but not the deep green leaves of summertime, but the bright yellow-green of newborn leaves.


It’s good to have the trees looking like trees again.


It also has not rained in any measurable amount since May. It’s close to a decade since the spring rains stopped. Not that I enjoyed the annual flooding, but I didn’t have to wonder if the well would run dry.

The riverbeds are dry again, the dams locked up to hold as much water as possible. Water restrictions limit use of water of lawns and gardens. We have our own water restrictions in place. Short showers. You don’t let the water run while you brush your teeth … or anything else. I have no idea how the farms in the area handle the problem, but it must be difficult.

No matter how many wells exist in an area, all wells tap into the same aquifer. When it doesn’t rain for months at a time, the aquifer gets low and water pressure decreases. Everyone’s lawn turns brown and the gardens wither. The whole region is dry, this year. Not going to be a great year for apples.


Since this is perhaps the eighth or ninth consecutive year of mild to severe drought in New England, it leads me to repeat something I read elsewhere (and I’m sorry I don’t remember the source). She asked “How many years of drought do you need before you recognize it isn’t a drought … it’s climate change.”

This isn’t California and the drought is not quite as severe … but this has historically been an area that suffers more from flood than drought. In the sixteen years we have lived in this valley, we’ve seen it go from annual flooding to a steadily increasing water shortage.

Climate change is real and it’s coming to a town near you, if it hasn’t already.

What’s this «Changing Seasons» blogging challenge?

«The Changing Seasons 2016» is a blogging challenge with two versions: the original (V1) which is purely photographic and the new version (V2) where you can allow yourself to be more artistic and post a painting, a recipe, a digital manipulation, or simply just one photo that you think represents the month. Anyone with a blog can join this challenge and it’ll run throughout 2016. It doesn’t matter if you couldn’t join the first month(s), late-comers are welcomed. These are the rules, but they’re not written in stone – you can always improvise, mix & match to suit your own liking:

These are the rules for Version 1 (The Changing Seasons V1):

  • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons
  • Each month, post 5-20 photos in a gallery.
  • Don’t use photos from your archive. Only new shots.

These are the rules for Version 2 (The Changing Seasons V2):

  • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons
  • Each month, post one photo (recipe, painting, drawing, whatever) that represents your interpretation of the month.
  • Don’t use archive stuff. Only new material!

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  1. swo8 July 25, 2016 / 2:25 pm

    It certainly wasn’t your usual Spring.


      • Garry Armstrong July 26, 2016 / 10:11 am

        Yes, a strange spring and summer. But compared to other parts of the country, we’re okay. I like weather where I can walk around in tank top and shorts.


    • Marilyn Armstrong July 25, 2016 / 4:28 pm

      The weather really IS changing. We still haven’t gotten a single drop of rain. I’m trying not to panic, but I’m having nightmares about dry wells.


  2. Raewyn's Photos July 25, 2016 / 4:26 pm

    We also had one very, very long summer from November right through to May. It was also very dry which was worrying for the farmers around us. We have had some rain and the hills are getting a little greener, but it might not be enough to stop a drought this year for us.Our year so far has been breaking all records for being the warmest ever. Scary thought


    • Marilyn Armstrong July 25, 2016 / 4:30 pm

      I think anyone who has eyes to see has to notice that the weather has changed over the past twenty years. Some areas are colder, others warmer. And rain patterns have changed. There seems to be less of it many places, but floods elsewhere. Not comforting.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Bette A. Stevens July 25, 2016 / 8:48 pm

    Rebirth…how lovely. Drought has been wonderfully interrupted here by intermittent torrential rains these past two weeks and we’re grateful. The well guy showed up five days after our ‘drought’ in the house and we’re grateful for that too. Sharing your challenge on Twitter, Marilyn. 🙂


    • Marilyn Armstrong July 25, 2016 / 10:40 pm

      Thanks Bette. They keep promising rain and storms, but we haven’t gotten a drop of rain. I know the well is low because the pressure is down. Nothing to be done without rain. I’m glad it’s raining up there. And I’m glad your well guy showed up! There aren’t enough of them and they keep their own schedules.


  4. Rich Paschall July 25, 2016 / 10:49 pm

    I wish I could send you some of our rain. The basement has flooded several times and that takes a lot of rain. It flooded twice this past Sunday. Everything is growing so fast, I can not keep up with it.


    • Marilyn Armstrong July 25, 2016 / 11:53 pm

      I don’t miss the annual flooding, but I really miss being able to take a shower without worrying that I’ll empty the well. It’s really DRY.


      • Rich Paschall July 26, 2016 / 9:52 pm

        Sorry because we have had many heavy rains with more coming at the end of the week. It’s hot and humid here.


  5. Cardinal Guzman July 28, 2016 / 3:42 am

    Nice gallery. I have one of those elctric organs too, not exactly the same model but a similar and simpler one . I don’t know how to play it though… 😀


    • Marilyn Armstrong July 28, 2016 / 10:11 am

      Thanks! I thought I would “know” how to play it because I play piano. Turns out, the organ is a very different instrument, so I can’t play it either 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Heyjude August 12, 2016 / 11:09 am

    You have a lovely ‘warm’ house in a very pretty location. Sorry to hear about the drought, it does seem to be that the weather bounces from one extreme to another. We (Britain) seem to be drifting towards a similar climate all year round – wetter and warmer – though our summer has not been very warm at all and flooding is more likely than snow of the past.


    • Marilyn Armstrong August 12, 2016 / 11:27 am

      Our local weather has been wildly erratic. To be fair, New England has always had weather extremes … from arctic cold to hot as hell. We’re currently doing hot as hell and dry, too. Drought — especially in summer — is not rare in these parts, but we seem to have lost the spring rains that balanced the equation. There is definitely a worldwide weather pattern change going on. I’m not going to speculate on the cause. I don’t think it’s one cause. I think it’s a bunch of things — man-made and natural combined. The important thing is that it’s happening and we are not dealing with it at all. Maybe we deserve it. As custodians of the earth, we’ve been gigantic failures.


      • Heyjude August 12, 2016 / 7:21 pm

        I didn’t realise that NE got that hot, I know it can have very heavy snowstorms and remember my ex getting caught out in one when he was in Boston for work many years ago. I have only visited in the autumn when it was very pleasant. I think ‘Man’ has failed hugely in looking after the planet. Human greed has a lot to do with it.


        • Marilyn Armstrong August 12, 2016 / 9:06 pm

          Most people who don’t live here don’t realize that when we say we have extremes of weather, we mean both ends — very hot, very cold, very dry, very wet, very snowy. Very very.

          And you’re right — human greed has everything to do with everything.

          Liked by 1 person

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