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T is for Tenderfoot

Merriam-Webster.com says that a tenderfoot is: “1 : an inexperienced beginner : novice a political tenderfoot. 2 : a newcomer in a comparatively rough or newly settled region especially : one not hardened to frontier or outdoor life.” When I hear the word, I automatically think of the 1960’s Walt Disney miniseries “The Tenderfoot” starring Brian Keith, James Whitmore, and other recognizable Disney stars. Pure country. In the novel that I recently submitted to an agent, a businesswoman relocates from Chicago to a western ranch. Of course, she is out of her element. She is a country tenderfoot. Did you know that a tenderfoot isn’t just a western term? It’s anyone who is new at something. I’m a

S is for Sunflowers

Sunflowers are my favorite flower. They make me smile. Their petals can be enormous, creating flowers up to a foot wide. Or dwarf varieties are available that grow a modest 1-3 feet tall. I identify them as yellow, but there is a red variety that I’m not as familiar with. Their sturdy stocks lift them skyward, towering 9-12 feet high. They make a statement, often associated with warm, happy thoughts. Of course, they are also produced for edible seeds and useful oils. To me, a breath-catching sight is a corn field bordered by a long line of brilliant yellow sunflowers. Or better yet, a field of sunflowers creating a cheery vision. I think they just make people feel good. I hope they make you

R is for Rain Clouds

What is your initial reaction to the sight of rain clouds? Other than "how much time do I have before it rains," I usually dash outdoors to secure flowers and move fragile items. I also run around the house to make sure the rain spouts are actually down, since we lift ours when we mow. I always place a large watering pail beneath one downspout. I use that to water flowers when it isn't raining. Do you have pets or children to get inside? The clouds serve as a warning of what is to come--especially if you're already hearing thunder or seeing lightning. I'm a bit of a cloud nut, so I marvel at beautiful cloud formations. If we need the rain, I thank God for the blessing that's on its way. If w

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