Are there 13 seasons in Oklahoma?

Don’t we enjoy the various seasons of Oklahoma? Think about it.

We have just been through one of the coldest winters on record for our wonderful state. We all weathered it the best we could with many people out of wood, lights and other things we are so very accustomed to. Our grandson in Dallas called and said they had burned all their wood, and was out of heat (because of electricity outage.) I know that must have been hard on the family.

We all had to change our daily patterns and habits. It was difficult here in Enid, but those who lived farther south are not accustomed to such ice/snow storms and below-zero temperature.

It was a huge adjustment for them. Hopefully, things are back to normal now and everyone is cozy.

A friend suggested there are 13 seasons in Oklahoma. Think about them. They really sound reasonable.

The first one is winter. It seems like winter is the longest season because we are somewhat confined in the winter and not out in our yards visiting with neighbors or sitting on the porch or patio. Some of our winters are brutal. Some of us long for summer.

I was in a store the other day, and a lady was at the check-out counter buying things for spring. She said she could hardly wait to get her hands in the dirt. I had to agree that I feel the same way. The farmer just comes out in me and I want to plant things and see things grow and bloom. That is considered “fool’s spring.” We KNOW it is not spring yet, but we are tired of being inside and want a change.

Next comes “second winter.” About the time we get our tomatoes planted and a few things growing comes another cold spell. We cover our tomatoes and yet lose some of them. We are sure the onions and radishes will make it. I always have winter onions and arugula that don’t freeze.

The next season we can enjoy is “spring of deception.” That is when the jonquils are blooming and the roses are really sprouting and ready to show forth their beautiful buds. We get hyped up and in earnest about planting and planning and buying seeds, and thinking of ways to keep the rabbits out of our well-tended garden.

Now comes our third winter. We are sick of it. But the jonquils are blooming through the snow and are so beautiful. Our winter clothes are packed away. We feel ready for warmer weather. We start the furnace again and pull out a few blankets. This has to end soon. We are tired of wearing our coats someplace and forgetting to bring them home.

Finally — finally — winter is history and we are into warmer weather. Well, then comes “tornado season.” We clean out the cellar if we have one or we make space in an inside closet to protect ourselves from living in another county in one fell swoop.

It is a scary time if you have ever experienced it. So much heartbreak when someone loses everything and is forced to start over with their lives. That is one of the prices we pay for living in Oklahoma. At least we don’t have hurricanes.

Spring season soon arrives with the glorious flowers and porch sitting ... and then bugs and mosquitoes. Somehow during winter we tend to forget that the bugs will arrive in the summer along with many mosquitoes and moths to swat and endure. But we love summer. We see all our neighbors outside and stop our work to catch up on visits.

It doesn’t take long before we are complaining about the heat and wondering why we wanted the summer season to arrive so quickly. We are tired of keeping the weeds and rabbits out of our gardens that we worked so hard to get going.

The spring season lasts about one week and then it turns hot and we enter the “Lord, what-did-we-do-to-deserve-to-burn” season. The only way to endure the heat is to swim every day. We despise the bugs, mowing, watering, sweating and having to dress up to go somewhere. We just long to do nothing but stay cool.

Season number nine is “road construction.” Following the snow, rains, lots of traffic and simple wear and tear, our streets need loving attention. Our crews work hard to keep our streets from falling apart before winter sets in again, so we will not have pot-holes and bumps.

Fall, glorious fall. My favorite time of year. The colors are my favorite and so beautiful and everywhere. We love the warm mornings when we take our coffee and scones to the patio to enjoy them and just listen to the sounds of nature. The flowers are going to seed and we are planning where to plant what next year. Fall is a beautiful time to stay home or travel someplace. No matter what we do or where we go, we feel invigorated. It is a relaxing time of year.

Just kidding. It is still summer. We got in too big a hurry. We knew summer was not completely over as we still had tomatoes on the vine. We had to go back to work and get the garden cleared. It is called Indian summer, which gives us a little more time to bring in the patio furniture and bring the plants in for winter. The school kids wear jackets to school and then the afternoons forget them so they go in lost and found. Our box is overflowing most of the time anyway.

Now, comes REALLY FALL. We are ready. We want it to last a long time. It doesn’t.

We have about four days of actual fall weather and then it is Christmas season.

So we have completed one single year of Oklahoma seasons. Would we have it any other way? We have learned to take what comes and love it. I love the changing seasons and we never get tired or experience boredom. Variety is the spice of life. Learn to enjoy every season.

A friend shared this green bean recipe with me at a dinner recently. I ate about a can of them myself. She started with five cans. You may want to adjust it for your family size.

Green bean recipe

5 cans cut green beans (drained)

1/2 pound bacon, cut in pieces and cooked crisp

4 tablespoons butter (I used bacon grease)

2/3 cup brown sugar

7 teaspoons soy sauce

1 and 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder

Cook bacon. Place drained beans in slow cooker and top with bacon. Mix butter, sugar, soy sauce and garlic powder and pour over beans and bacon. Cook until heated through. When all is hot it is ready to stir and enjoy. S-o-o-o-o-o-o good.

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