Grateful for that million dollar rain

raindrops on leaf

“Everything has its beauty but not everyone sees it.” -Confucius

This morning, there is beauty in a muddy floor. I never once thought I would see it, nor say it, but after weeks on end without rain, there is reason to celebrate.

Yesterday, we finally had a day of showers.

Talking weather

I once heard a radio guy say if he tries to converse with someone and they bring up the weather, even in a random, searching-for-conversation kind of way, he will exit as quickly as he can. I’d bet my next meal this guy was not a farm kid.

Wheat crops were amazing this year, all thanks to a mild winter and rains falling at critical times throughout the wheat growing season. Travel any countryside road surrounded by wheat fields enveloped in green hillsides and I find myself wishing I had the artistic talent to capture it on canvas.

The weather can never be just right for everyone in the big picture. But this summer, reminiscent of the hot, dry summer of 1988, has caused everyone around this part of the world to pray for rain.

Wishing for rain

Yesterday, as we sat down to eat lunch, our nephew called. “Hey, is it raining over there?” he asked, happiness in his voice.

“Heck no! I’ve perspired more today than any precipitation I’ve seen in a long time,” my hubby answered.

Todd, who lives just a few miles north of us, said it had been raining at his place for about a half hour. Glory, glory hallelujah!

The skies looked promising for it, but we feared that once again, it would go around us.

Just a week earlier, we had spent a full Sunday afternoon at Doug’s brother’s home for a big gathering of family, just about a half-hour drive north of us. Those attending the big family reunion had to tiptoe around the puddles while the rain kept everyone under cover pretty much the entire afternoon.

I could sense Doug thinking exactly what I felt: let’s hope we’re getting this rain at home, too.

As we headed toward home late in the day, the signs of a soaking rain first looked so promising, but diminished the further south we drove. By the time we got to our place, the sidewalk and the dirt paths were barely damp. As the days turned hotter, the wish for rain remained unspoken, but the search for signs of it in the night sky was constant and fruitless, like an anxious parent watching a feverish newborn slumber.


We have seen glorious sunsets this summer. Many evenings the view of the open western sky is better than words or camera can capture.

I often think of my great grandfather, Charlie, and his words, “Red sky in morning, sailor take warning; red sky at night, sailor’s delight.”

We’ve see dark storm clouds gathering but passing us by. It has been reason for worry the entire hot month of July.

Finally, yesterday, the rains came. It came slow and steady, just what we needed. It was what the old-timers of my youth called a million dollar rain.

This morning, when my pup left muddy pawprints on the floor, I didn’t fuss. Like an old-timer, I felt grateful.


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Judith Sutherland, born and raised on an Ohio family dairy farm, now lives on a 70-acre farm not far from the area where her father’s family settled in the 1850s. Appreciating the tranquility of rural life, Sutherland enjoys sharing a view of her world through writing. Other interests include teaching, reading, training dogs and raising puppies. She and her husband have two children, a son and a daughter, and three grandchildren.



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