This is my favorite time of year. It’s not too hot yet, not too cool and the plentiful rain we’re having this spring has made everything so green and lush.
I love to drive down the road and watch the many new calves cavorting in the fields. All of life seems more intensely alive at this time of year.
I can sit out on our back deck or our front porch and watch the squirrels playing in the trees, occasionally taunting one of our cats – just out of reach. The variety of birds in our backyard never ceases to amaze me and I so love the little hummingbirds and their feistiness, despite their small size.
It’s good sometimes to just stay home and appreciate all that the word “home” means – especially here in our rural county.
But though we’re in a recession right now, and money is tight for most of us, there’s no reason to stay home all the time; inexpensive or free activities are always going on in the area, including right here in our home county.
For example, last Friday evening my husband Charles and I attended the first of three free concerts sponsored this month by the Friends of the Madison County Library and a Grassroots Arts Foundation Grant. This first concert featured Jana Michelson and Danielsville’s own Marion Montgomery. Friends, couples and entire families brought chairs and coolers to sit outside or under the pavilion at the recreation department next door to the library and listen to a couple of hours of good music. There were also food vendors on site if you didn’t want to bother packing a picnic. If you missed this one, you have two more chances, one this Friday evening, May 16, from 7 – 9 p.m. featuring the Garnet River Gals and Gabrielle Kelly and again on Friday, May 29, (same time) featuring Pat Shields (also a local pottery maker) and The Georgia Mudcats with Beverly Smith on the fiddle.
It was good to look around and see so many relaxed faces and friendly smiles as dusk settled over us. Whatever our problems, everyone seemed to let go of them, even if only for a little while.
Other activities were going on in the park; children were playing games and playing on the playground behind the pavilion – making us all glad of the pleasant spring weather.
The Carlton Festival has just passed, which is always a good time for old and young alike, as is the FolkLife Festival held right here in Danielsville.
The Hull Festival is coming up on Saturday, May 23, another opportunity to bring the kids along for a parade, horse and train rides and other activities, while you sit under the cool canopy of oak trees and listen to some more good music, or stroll through the grounds on Old Elberton Road to visit the many different vendors with crafts, information and a variety of meals for lunch. The festival begins at 9 a.m. (parade at 9:30 sharp) and lasts until 3 p.m.
Also, the Madison-Oglethorpe Animal Shelter is planning a gospel and bluegrass singing featuring several local groups, a raffle for prizes, a rabies clinic for your pets and a chance to donate to a good cause or adopt a new family member who desperately needs a home. The event will be held June 6, from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at Madison County Memorial Park in Danielsville, across the street from the Journal office.
Then there’s the Comer Farmers Market (Saturday mornings, 8 a.m.–noon), a good place to find some fresh veggies, crafts and other homegrown/homemade items, while enjoying the company of friends and neighbors.
So, while life is extra stressful right now for most of us, it’s also a good time to stay at or near home and learn anew to appreciate the simple things and all that we do have, including the gifts of family, home, friendship and community.
Margie Richards is a reporter and office manager for The Madison County Journal.