Mother Nature is looking to be busy over the next couple months here in my corner of Tennessee. And while back home everyone is preparing for another summer of water shortages and drought, we’ve had a different sort of water problem around here lately.

Our last storm brought so much rain a lower lying section of grass bordering the creek in the backyard looked more like a lake than lawn as we watched it encroach our basement sliding door.

During any decent rainfall storm drainage flows through a couple of neighboring fields and along the north side of the yard, so much so I’ve started gauging storms by the size of the temporary “river” as it flows to the creek on the southern side of my yard.

Well, as darkness fell, so did the rain, as I was reminded of calls out to the ranch for reports of how close the water was getting when Orestimba Creek would flood.

After a stressful half hour or so of hoping the creek would catch up and mentally kicking myself for not making a stack of sandbags, the water receded before anything really came inside.

After the snow, sun and rain last month, well, I was curious what else spring would have in store. One of these days I’ll remember what happened to the curious cat, especially with 2021 being what it is.

Fast forward to Tuesday, and our newest weather alert... severe storms for Wednesday which include wind, hail and thunder, with tornado and flood warnings across a big chunk of the mid-South.

Meteorologists and observers aside, our dog Bones is already laying right next to Vince’s side of the bed... his favorite spot to hide from bad weather (other than on the bed next to us). I’m guessing this one will be a doozy from his behavior, and packing a storm/tornado bag before I go to bed tonight would be the prudent thing to do.

Of course this storm is hitting as all my trees are starting to bud... including my peach trees. Never fails.

Between storms and reports of the coming cicada invasion, spring is definitely coming in like a rampaging lion.

And I’m really hoping the state ag extension office is correct that the mass of Brood X will stay south of my county. My regular cicadas are loud enough, thank you very much....and in reading about the state office’s news release I found out they can give the dogs a stomach ache if they eat too many. Sarek is not known in these parts for his impulse control... especially when there is a chase involved. So that will be fun.

At least I don’t have to worry about that until May.

For now the storm alerts are enough.

Thankfully I have plenty to do around here to make it easy to avoid what the powers that be in Washington, D.C. are planning to unleash next on the American public. Already we’re back to the normal of balancing the weekly budget with continually rising gas and food prices which can make said budget tight in a hurry. When I heard a news report warning of $8 a gallon gas by the summer in pricier areas of the country (you have my prayers in California) I about had an aneurysm.

The fact that small and medium businesses, family ag and dairy businesses and wage employees will be financially decimated by the repercussions of these green policies seems more part of the plan than not.

It’s as good a way as any to punish those who repeatedly “vote against their own interests” and for a strong nation.

And sadly, that middle class malaise was exactly what Biden voters wanted a return to.

Yep, the pipeline layoffs in the thousands, rising prices, federally funded abortion and overflowing border facilities are nothing new in this country.

Four years wasn’t that long ago.

I’m going to need a week or so to “spring forward.”

Don’t get me wrong....the extra daylight in the evenings make it worth it, but we’re all dragging in the morning this week at my house. And that’s after the coffee.

Three days in, and both Sam and I overslept, missing the school bus. My usual alarm clock, the dogs, were both happily snoring when I wiped the sleep from my eyes and Sam came downstairs to tell me he was going to need a ride.

My mom is probably the least surprised by that development, since she used to ask me how I was going to manage mornings once I had Sam.

Some days are better than others. Some days... well, big sunglasses and a sweater cover the under eye circles and visible parts of the pajamas.

Like I said, I’ll need a few days. And extra coffee. I’ve accepted that I’m not a morning person, and never will be.

Arizona has the right idea by not “falling back” and clocking Daylight Savings Time all year. It is so much simpler, and I’d be willing to forego the fall back, and an extra hour of sleep, to not feel like a zombie until my internal clock resets itself.

Maybe Congress, and state legislatures, could spend a day on something useful and uniting like that.

Staff columnist Toni Butero can be reached at or by calling (209) 862-2222.