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Pleasures of the Country.
THE daily enjoyment of life in the country is greatly increased by the habit of observing all that is beautiful around us. It is worth while to learn the names of all the trees and the birds which we see. A little knowledge of botany also adds much interest to our walks, as it is pleasant to know the names of the flowers which we find, and it is a positive delight to discover a rare variety, which we should have passed without a glance in the days of our ignorance. The exquisite ferns in the spring unrolling from their woolly blankets, the cardinal-flowers of the late summer, the golden-rod and asters of the autumn, and all the lovely sisterhood of flowers which adorn our hills and meadows, give a continual glow of pleasure to the heart which loves them. A familiarity with the leading constellations, and with the planets which shine in the evening sky, is another source of enjoyment recurring perpetually.
It will be noticed that there is a slight increase of debt the past year. This, however, is much more than offset by the extraordinary change in the rate of interest, more than half of the whole debt bearing interest now paying only 4 or 4 per ct. Debt bearing interest
At Six per cent.
At Five per cent.
At Four one-half per ct.
At Four per cent.
Navy Pension Fund, at
three per cent.
TOTAL DEBT less amount of cash in the Treasury
Total debt, less amount in the Treasury Sept. 1, 1878.
POETRY, ANECDOTES, ETC.
CHEERFULNESS in the family is as important as sunshine for growing plants. It is better to bring children up in a home full of kindness, consideration, and cheerful voices and faces, than to give them a fortune. It is very easy to fall into the habit of faultfood or the annoyances of the day, of finding on all sides, of grumbling at marks which smart worse than a blow. making sarcastic and ill-natured reBut such habits do not promote the
happiness of those who indulge in them, and they certainly do not that of those who suffer from them. Those who look on the bright side of things and take everything by its smooth handle, are likely to have better health, live longer, and be more beloved and useful, than the people who look on the dark side, and impart their gloomy feelings freely to all around.
When you are inclined to be lowspirited, do a kindness to somebody, occupy yourself briskly with work, in the open air if possible, oblige yourself to stop brooding over your own troubles, examine yourself to see if you cannot find something for which to be grateful, something which is worth more to you than any money, say eyesight, friends, freedom from racking pain.
IF time be of all things the most precious, wasting time must be the greatest prodigality, since lost time is never found again; and what we call time enough always proves little enough. Let us, then, be up and doing, and doing to the purpose; so by diligence shall we do more with less perplexity. Sloth makes all things difficult, but industry all easy; and he that riseth late must trot all day, and shall scarce overtake his business at night; while laziness travels so slowly that poverty soon overtakes him. Drive thy business, let not that drive thee; and early to bed, and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.
But thou shalt flourish in immortal youth,
Unhurt amid the war of elements,
HEALTH AND PLUCK.
A SOMEWHAT varied experience of men has led me, the longer I live, to set less value upon merc cleverness, to attach more and more importance to industry and to physical endurance. Indeed, I am much disposed to think that endurance is the most valuable quality of all; for industry, as the desire to work hard, does not come to much if a feeble frame is unable to respond to the desire. To a lawyer, a physician, or a merchant, it may be everything to be able to work sixteen hours a day for as long as is needful without being used up. Moreover, the patience, tenacity, and good humor which are among the most important qualifications for dealing with men, are incompatible with an irritable brain, a weak stomach, or a defective circulation. If any one of you were a son of mine, and a good fairy were to offer to equip him according to my wishes for the battle of practical life, I should say: "I do not care to trouble you for any more cleverness; put in as much industry as you can instead; and oh, if you please, a broad, deep chest, and a stomach of whose existence he shall never know anything." I should be well content with the prospects of a fellow so endowed.
I WANDERED lonely as a cloud
When all at once I saw a crowd,
Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way, They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay; Ten thousand saw I at a glance, Tossing their heads in sprightly dance. The waves beside them danced; but they
Outdid the sparkling waves in glee: A poet could not but be gay
In such a jocund company.
I gazed, and gazed, but little thought What wealth the show to me had brought:
For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood, They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude; And then my heart with pleasure fills, And dances with the daffodils.
A priest in Ireland, having preached a sermon on miracles, was asked by one of his congregation, walking homeward, to explain a little more clearly what a miracle meant.
"Is it a meracle you want to understand?" said the priest. "Walk on there forninst me, and I'll think how I can explain it to you."
The man walked on, and the priest came after him, and gave him a tremendous kick.
"Ow!" roared the man, "why did you do that? "
"Did you feel it?" asked the priest. "To be sure I did," replied the man. 66 'Well, then, it would have been a meracle if you had not."
A TIPSY chap, who was seated on the box with a stage-driver, swayed backward till he tumbled off. The mud was deep, and he fell soft. "There, now!" he exclaimed, as he crawled out of the slough, "I knew you'd upset if you didn't take care.' On being told that they had not upset. "Not upset! "he echoed, in amazement. "If I'd known that, I wouldn't have got off."
"SUSAN,” said an Irishman to his fellow-servant, "what are the bells ringing for?" "In honor of the princess's birthday," was the reply. "Be aisy, jewel," rejoined Pat; none of your tricks upon travellers. "Twas the Prince of Wales's on the ninth, and how can it be his sister's twelve days after, unless indade they were twins ?"
WHICH WAS FIRST?-
Whether first, the egg or the hen?
The hen was first, or whence the egg?
The egg was first, or whence the hen? Tell me how it came, and when.
ANSWERS TO CHARADES, ENIGMAS, &C., IN LAST YEAR'S ALMANAC.
ANSWERS TO CHARADES. 1. Telegram. 2. Ramrod. ANSWER TO ENIGMA.
ANSWER TO CONUNDRUMS. 1. Lay to (two).
2. When Autumn turns the leaves. 3. When U and I are one. 4. Dog's hair.
BEFORE a circle let appear
Gently my first blew over the bay,
Round goes my whole, the anchor's And parts with fond embrace. weighed,
The bark made trim and tight; Heart-broken stands the weeping maid, As the ship sails out of sight.
The Canker Worm.
IT is surprising to see the foliage of the apple and the elm trees in certain sections of the country eaten up by the canker worm year after year, when it is so easy to stop its ravages and increase our prospects of getting a crop and of saving the trees at the same time. The common methods of protection by tar and printers' ink are well known, and they are effective if faithfully followed up. But a still simpler method has been found equally effective and at the same time less expensive. It is to sprinkle the trees, just after the worms are hatched, with París green in a partial solution in water. Use the Paris green at the rate of a tablespoonful to twenty quarts of water, or say a large pailful. Stir it about so as to get a slight solution, so far as possible, and fill up a barrel or some old hogshead set up on wheels. With a cheap Johnson force-pump, which will take up more or less of the poison which settles to the bottom, a large-sized tree can be sprinkled sufficiently in an incredibly short time, when you can drive on to the next tree.
This simple method was thoroughly tried during the last spring, and proved to be perfectly effective, at a cost of only a few cents a tree. It must, of course, be applied at just the right time, and be used with care. Paris green is not very soluble in water. It is a mineral substance. But the stirring and suction of the force-pump will raise enough of it to give a tree a good application. It is worth trying where other precautions have been neglected. These other precautions consist in putting strips of tarred paper, about ten inches wide, around the trees, fastening them by strings at the top and bottom, and covering them from time to time with coal-tar or with printers' ink, as often as the previous application becomes hardened or dry, so as to enable the insect to walk over it. It is better still, perhaps, to apply the residuum of kerosene, a very | cheap substance, in the fall, about the 20th of October, and occasionally through the warm spells of winter, when there is danger that the grubs will run up.
A still simpler application is common fly-paper, which is made in the simplest possible way, and which any one can prepare at the least cost. Take linseed oil one part, and rosin four parts, melt them together, and apply warm. If the mixture is too stiff, use a little more oil; if it is too thin, a little less. These substances are in almost every house, and the cost but very trifling.
Light Land Farming.
THERE are large portions of New England where the soil is light and sandy, and which are commonly supposed to be barren and very poorly adapted to farming purposes. In some sections such soils are wholly neglected and left to take care of themselves. Where there are other and better soils in the neighborhood, that can be cultivated to greater advantage, this perhaps is all very well; but still it is worth while to consider how such soils can be improved and rendered more productive. The people of Cape Cod, for example, are going to live and have their homes there, no matter how many fertile acres may be accessible at the West or in the interior, and if there is any practicable way to make their sands productive they want to study and find it out.
The great defect of sandy soils is the want of organic matter. They are what is called leachy, and do not retain moisture readily, but they possess some advantages over strong clays. They are easily worked, and if the want of organic matter can be supplied, they are certainly worthy of cultivation. Let us see if there is no way to accomplish this object, so as to remedy the defects of such soils and to convert them into good and productive loams.
There are some plants that scem to prefer such soils, and that flourish upon sands that seem to be barren. If we travel up through the Connecticut valley, even where the sand is the result, for the most part, of the wearing away of a quartz rock, and is consequently far more destitute of the elements of plantfood than a sand we often come across, that results from the breaking-up or wearing away of a granite or a syenite, and hence more barren, and ill adapted to cultivation, we find certain plants that cover those soils with a very considerable vegetable growth. We find especially the white lupine growing luxuriantly, and some other plants that seem to prefer the sand. Why not take advantage of this fact? Why not take a hint from nature and sow the seed of leguminous plants for the sake of turning under?
Such soils do not need mineral fertilizers. They abound in mineral matter already. If we had a superabundance of barn-yard manures, which are com