As we celebrate the 4th of July I am meditating on allium.

Allium is a genus of monocotyledonous flowering plants that includes hundreds of species, including the cultivated onion, garlic, scallion, shallot, leek, and chives. The generic name Allium is the Latin word for garlic, and the type species for the genus is Allium sativum which means "cultivated garlic".

Last week I picked up four beautifully made ceramic casserole dishes with matching lids. I had requested them to be made as gifts for some of my 20- to 30-year-old nieces and nephews that are buying houses, having babies and getting engaged and married. They are the perfect gift. Beautifully made, each set is unique, durable and a great size for two to four servings.

Walking through the woods yesterday evening I heard the spring peepers for the first time this year. There are clumps of something wild that look like snowdrops, the burgundy bulbs of skunk cabbage are presenting themselves and I saw recent beaver activity along the edge of the pond. I thought to myself, “I am so spoiled because I live in this beautiful place.”