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In an effort to ensure that I get more reading done in the pool, I bought a new float, which you can see above on the left. It has not been water-tested yet, so we shall see how this goes. My older reading float (pictured on the right) still is servicing me well, but I have had it for years and the nylon on the seat is starting to rip, which I saw as a sign. This one is much fancier, but it does not have cup holders. I know, how can one read and float without cup holders? Not that I ever put a drink in those cup holders! I will try not to hum the theme song from “Gilligan’s Island.”

I have discovered the way that I get more reading done. I leave my phone in the house, head outside to my chair underneath the turquoise tent, which my husband calls “The Cleopatra Tent,” and I read. Then I float in the pool and read. Last Saturday, I floated and kicked for three hours while reading THE IT GIRL by Ruth Ware. A pool means that I can exercise and read at the same time. This is very efficient. I have been lobbying hard for a hot tub. I was picturing myself reading while kicking my legs with flippers. Yes, I will not get far, but what a workout. Hmmm…I will need heatproof flippers.

It has been a super busy week as we are juggling a number of projects, as well as noodling some new plans. I met with my book group, and we had a terrific conversation about A TREE GROWS IN BROOKLYN by Betty Smith, the first classic title that we have read as a group. I loved it, and even though I only got halfway through it before the meeting, I am looking forward to finishing it, even if it means that I read just a chapter a night.

Well, we know it’s truly summer when the peaches are in the house. We typically order from The Georgia Peach Company, but they did not seem to have any NJ stops this year. So we went with The Peach Truck, and Tom picked up two boxes of peaches on Wednesday. They seem to be from South Carolina. It appears there was a frost in Georgia that ruined most of the crop there. Now these next two weeks will be about all things peaches. I am ready for pies, cobblers, salsas and lots of freezing.

Because there is never a dull moment in our garden, we are now dealing with lantern flies, which currently are minutely sized, but are chowing down on the leaves of plants in a rather vicious way. And they are FAST! Thus I am waiting for praying mantis eggs...or, should I say, I am praying for praying mantis eggs. Our local garden center is getting these in, and they are scheduled to hatch in mid-July. These sly little creatures camouflage against the leaves and then gobble up lantern flies. I am getting ready to assemble my army of eggs for this battle. I will be discussing how many eggs I need and where to position them. I do not want to have the praying mantis tired as it seeks prey (you see what I did there, right?), so I am ready to get my battle plan in place.