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On the Sakatah Trail, about eight miles in. We're still smiling! The morning of the Fourth was almost a perfect day to run in Minnesota.

On the Sakatah Trail, about eight miles in. We’re still smiling! The morning of the Fourth was almost a perfect day to run in Minnesota.

The Fourth of July. Good times, good friends. Our friend from Chattanooga spent the weekend, and we ran, we biked, we ate ice cream, we listened to music. I worked a tiny amount on Friday and a couple of hours on Saturday (oh, those pesky summer classes), but otherwise I fit in a lot of relaxing and outdoor time.

Taking a short break in Janesville before heading back to Madison Lake on Sunday. A much warmer, much more humid day than on Saturday.

Taking a short break in Janesville before heading back to Madison Lake on Sunday. A much warmer, much more humid day than on Saturday.

Joe and Ann of The Frye, at the NaKato in North Mankato the evening of July 4. Outdoor music: What we miss during the depths of winter.

Joe and Ann of The Frye, at the NaKato in North Mankato the evening of July 4. Outdoor music: What we miss during the depths of winter.

New York Times (print). I added the Sunday print edition of the New York Times to my digital-only access (it ended up being cheaper). I’ll read the digital version a few times a week, but I am surprised at how much I like the print version. It’s a little case study in how I consume information. I can see a headline on the web and not read it, but I will see the same headline in print and read it. I suppose there’s something overall relaxing about sitting down with a newspaper. Often when I’m browsing headlines on the web I’m doing a dozen other things and don’t necessarily have the time to go beyond a headline or the first paragraph or two. And the print edition of the Book Review — need I say more?

One of my favorite things to read when I sit on the couch.

One of my favorite things to read when I sit on the couch.

My writing group. I get together every two weeks with several talented, big-hearted women. On Wednesday we met at what we like to call “the Becky farm,” an old country house surrounded by fields and a big expanse of sky. The weather was conducive — cool and overcast for the first day of July — to sitting outside. I had been having a problem figuring out where my next section of writing needed to go, and by the time I left that night I had started to sort it out. Bouncing ideas off other writers is invaluable.

The view from the Becky porch. A computer, a mug of tea, and rhubarb dessert.

The view from the Becky porch. A computer, a mug of tea, and rhubarb dessert.

What’s making you happy this week?

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