Summer Solstice always reminds me of my father. June was the last time I saw him alive, June that year was spent in the windswept hills of Montana, watching dad slowly letting go. There is a sense of melancholy overlaid with hope when June swings around again. Dad was, up to his last breath, purely hopeful. Oddly, Father's Day means very little to me . . .
Summer Solstice calls for big bursting baskets of hope, yes? Today we're planting pumpkins and hope for a good fall harvest. The pumpkin's bed mates are five varieties of heirloom tomatoes, a jalapeno pepper plant, four yellow squashes, a tomatillo, chives, cilantro, rosemary, basil, lemon thyme and bell pepper, and the errant spearmint that pops up where it wants. This year the farm is doing well and I've left it all to mom to tend, and we (the fam damily) started our own urban garden in the backyard at home. It's open and sunny and has served only as a toilet for our one remaining dog these past couple of years. Raised beds and fence line growing beds are slowly making their way in. And more tomatoes. More squash, zucchinis this time, and cucumbers. Yes, one can never have too many tomato plants growing . . . There is a Summer Solstice soap in the works, something bright and cheery and floral, something unexpected. There's also a lot of stuff to ship off! This past weekend was a busy one and today I pay the price for good fortune by wrapping and packaging and trudging off to the post office.
What I'd love to do, what I'd get a big kick out of, is to make a tuberose and vanilla soap. Wouldn't that be something?