That's more like it! An outpouring of happiness for the sunshine that warmed our senses, our soil, our spirits. You tell me if those crocuses look happy or not!
My very first act of the day is to write down all that I have to do outside before the official planting of new flowers begins. (I estimate that the first planting of perennials can be done as early as three weeks from now; I remember when gardeners thought I was pushing it to put stuff in the first week of May... oh, how the weather patterns have changed!)
The list is diverse and long: clean up the beds one last time, weed the strawberry fields, clean up the raspberry bushes, clear the veggie plot, divide the daylilies, patch up the beds where the cheepers have clawed the earth and the tender plants...
(Ed tells me -- the flower fields look fine! You can't notice the half dozen plants that were taken down!
But I notice. Grrr!
Remember, we've lived without ticks since the cheepers moved in.
But I love each and every flower that grows here! Grrr!
All three hens are laying eggs now, daily!
I already have to fight off other animals!
They're so cute!
Fine. Cute and come spring time -- annoying.)
We eat breakfast in the sun room of course. I mean, really!
After, since it is still rather cool outside, we drive to Farm and Fleet to restock on some essentials. Organic fertilizer. Chicken feed. More seeds. An extra spade.
I have grown immensely fond of our trips to Farm and Fleet. Nearly everything we need to manage the farmette land is there and even though most of it is completely out of my area of familiarity, still, we walk through the aisles, both of us delighted, though I suppose for different reasons.
It doesn't hurt that nearby to this vast store, there is the tiny chocolate shop that has come to be our favorite and today, Ed is insistent that we pick up a box of chocolates.
Maybe you should hold off and buy them closer to my birthday?
Just consider it your birthday box.
I can't do that!
Fine, get them anyway.
Then, somewhat devilishly: look! a rack of sweet greeting cards!
I see that.
Don't you want to buy one? you know, in anticipation of...
Which one do you want? Maybe this one?
Not the first one you look at! You have to read all of them and choose one that best expresses your feelings.
How about that one?
Then back to this one...
It's a routine we've gone through so often, but clearly not one the sales clerk has heard before because she is laughing uncontrollably at the bluntness of it all.
Here, she says, handing an extra chocolate to Ed. You deserve this reward.
Me, I think she handed the treat to the wrong person!
I start in on some of my garden tidying work, but only for a little while. At noon I'm off to pick up Snowdrop. And on my walk to her schoolhouse door, I spot the small cabbage white -- always the earliest of spring butterflies you'll see in Wisconsin!
Snowdrop and I go out for a walk of course. More flowers to spot, birds to name, signs of spring to take note of. As we come to the train tracks that cross the street of our walk, the gates go down and a rather long freight train thunders in. The hoot is long and loud and she is somewhat appalled by the noise. (I am amused that at the farmhouse she goes straight for her little train set, perhaps to reassure herself that not all trains bellowed at you when moving along the tracks.)
But where is ahah? She munches on her croissant and looks to the sheep shed...
And as always, is delighted when he strolls over. They have their routine. These days, music figures prominently in it.
And later, as Snowdrop naps, my eyes move back to the great outdoors. I close my computer, pack the baby monitor in my pocket and go out to pull a few weeds. Ed comes out of the sheep shed and we work our way through the vast fields that make up the flower beds and fruit patches of the farmette. There is no such thing as too much time spent on pulling weeds out of a wet, spring soil.
Evening. It's nearly time for Snowdrop to go home, but in fact, these hours just before dusk are always grand in the half year of warmer weather. Snowdrop knows this. She wants to be outside.
A few photos from then:
(Cheepers: what do you have for us??)
(Freedom to be!)
("I want to pull the wagon!")
(What I notice is the sunshine. And the joy. And the sunshine...)
Spring. Beautiful, radiant, promise filled spring.