Thursday, April 23, 2015


I couldn't wait any longer. It has to be today. True, the night was so chilly that the water froze in the water dish we keep for the cheepers by the picnic table. But the forecast promises a warm up. Soon. And anyway, today is so sunny! Even the daffodils perk up!


And the cheeper girls seem somehow more radiant, more effervescent today (Oreo follows, at a distance)...


And in the new orchard, a few cherry blooms signal the coming of fruits. Maybe not this season, but soon!


Ed and I eat breakfast in the sun room, but thoughts of the porch are certainly in my head. Maybe next week we'll be out there again!


And immediately after breakfast, I drive out to my favorite shopping venue of them all -- the Flower Factory. Now! Today! It's time to take a look at what may be good for planting in the new flower field standing ready (after the bramble dig out operation).


There are very few people shopping for flowers so early in the season (at this possibly largest perennial retailer in the Midwest, just ten minutes south of the farmette). I talk to the owners and compare notes on which plants had trouble this winter. For me, the struggle is always with lavender -- it lives, but it tells me again and again that it would prefer a climate closer to that found along the Mediterranean.

It takes me several hours just to look, to touch gently, to admire. I pick out some new additions, but I'm proceeding slowly this season (in part because Snowdrop fills a good part of the day for me and too, I don't need to buy so much; I can divide some of the plants in my garden and spread them to new flower fields).

And very quickly, it's time to head for Snowdrop's home.

She is radiant and cheerful and shows off the best ballet pointy toes, so appropriate, given her ballerina "shoes"!


We try sitting up again...


And there are books to read...


And of course, her gymnastics are very impressive.

(look at me, grandma!)

(oh oh! I flipped to the side! how do I get myself up now?!)

Very impressive!

(yeah, I think so!)

And, too, I like to watch her work through her grabbing motions and I tell her that she is indeed the best grabber I have ever seen this side of Lake Monona! Snowdrop likes compliments.


When her mom returns home, the three of us go for a walk around the smaller lake.

(Snowdrop, can't you smile for the camera? Nope!)

(but I'll smile for mommy!)

It's both cool and warm, sunny and windy -- a day that reminds you of how easy it is to get complacent about spring and the good things it brings with it, at the same time that it nudges you to have hope, because really, we're done with the tougher seasons!

In the evening, Ed and I take a walk in our local county park.


It's quiet here most anytime we come (a very underused park!). And we're quiet too tonight, both lost in our thoughts -- mine straying toward people, his probably toward machines.


It is late by the time I get supper on the table. Cheeper eggs, asparagus, mushrooms. A spring favorite of ours. With a huge salad.

The day started prettily and ended beautifully. How good is that?!


  1. A nice day! Your warm/cool should be here tomorrow, thank goodness! I've had enough of sub-freezing weather. We're supposed to have temps in the 40s tomorrow but below freezing for tomorrow night, so one more night covering the alyssum after tonight.

    Love Snowdrop's little ballet shoes, so cute! And I think her hair is starting to lose that reddish cast. It's becoming more blonde, though not a white blonde. More a strawberry blonde. Pretty Snowdrop!

    1. It still dipped below freezing for us. I hid the new plants in the garage shack! I'm waiting to put out MY alyssum (which I love so much for the honey sweet fragrance!) until Sunday since Saturday night still may dip below 32F. I winter mine over in the sun room and it does survive, but it BEGS to be outdoors!

  2. Your Etsy quilt is a great backdrop for pics. This girlie - I don't know if I've seen the same outfit twice!

    I find myself buying little rompers for C that remind us of Mommy's profession - with a dragonfly, butterfly, or bird. Now if I would find one with music notes, that would be super for Daddy's girl.

    I've given up trying to buy gender neutral clothes as the young women in the family were trying for. Sex stereotyping is alive and well in the baby department. Have you SEEN the baby girl shirts that all say some variation of "sweetie angel princess" and the many boy shirts that say some variation of "troublemaker" Tsk ;)
    I have found a romper with bright little cars and one with froggies. So a possible little brother could wear those. But she is so "pretty in pink" and bright flowers, who can resist? Auntie Em, her godmother, has taken care of her Superman and Cincinnati Reds rompers. :)

    The stroller frown is WAY my favorite picture! In a sea of smiles, THIS one makes ME grin!

    How our first baby disliked (vocally)stroller rides if there was a hint of wind..or chill.. or bright sun in his eyes...
    And by 1-1/2, he insisted on walking and pushing the stroller Himself. always In Charge. That didn't change!

    1. I love your stories and comparisons! Yes, yes -- I agree about the clothes. The trouble with many of the gender neutral clothes is that they're seldom as well executed as the ones that are more obviously for girls. And our joy in facing spring and summer invites flower and strawberry and blueberry patterns!
      Snowdrop is cycling through a new size and season. From the point of view of economics, they definitely need another girl! Though of course, there could be another granddaughter elsewhere someday...
      Finally, when i put up the pouting Snowdrop (who actually does love stroller rides, even long ones... not quite sure why, because there's tons of wind and she normally is SO active!), i honestly thought -- Joy's going to smile at this one! :)

    2. Those gender style issues go on and on! A friend's PreK class received two tricycles recently, both in pink and lavender... now the boys are so caught up in the decision: should we ride them or not? They want to but they don't want to ride "girls' trikes". I'm sure they'll ride them eventually :^) Much easier for girls... they happily can wear boy clothes, ride boy trikes, play with boy toys!

  3. I grew lavender way back when we first moved here and it grew fine for several years, even with our harsh winters, but finally it expired... and I've always wanted to try it again, but maybe it's just the right spot in the world for that plant.

    1. If you buy the right lavender, your chances of success are high because they can be grown up to zone 4 and certainly in zone 5 (which is my zone after a decade of climate change). There are at least three hardy varieties generally sold here (including at White Flower Farm in CT -- they deliver!). But, you should mulch to be sure (I do not mulch) and you can expect some winter loss. Once established, it usually does better rather than worse, so that I have one that's actually huge. But, they're never as pretty as the ones by the Mediterranean because they lose their perfect mound shape. Still, the fragrance is worth it and they attract lots of bees!

  4. Those beautiful lavender fields in Provence that I have visited so often have finite lives. After a few years they grow woody and old and must be replaced. One of our favorite fields has had little oak trees planted in rows between the lavender rows. It is said (I have no idea of the source of the info) that they are a variety of oak that will be friendly for growing truffles. Lavender will be planted elsewhere, to take over for another crop. So you apparently cannot expect your lavender plants to live and be beautiful forever. What lovely crop rotations.


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