It does not take much to excite me as far as spring goes. I was thrilled on Friday when I went out to get the newspaper. The crocuses in my yard were in full bloom. The delicate leaves had gone undetected until the purple blossoms spread their petals.
Did you see that full moon? It was really something. The giant white orb appeared not only larger than normal, but closer to earth than usual. Unfortunately clouds moved in and obscured the view keeping the night darker than it should have been.
This morning I saw a quail crossing the road just below the house. Maybe it was one of those my son released as part of a stocking program.
Nature never ceases to amaze me. I love to watch the animals that visit. A raccoon routinely runs through the yard, sometimes in front of the house and sometimes in back of it. He raises his body and runs on his toes. It is really cute. I remember one of our pet raccoons doing that often.
Although it was in the 60s yesterday, today we peaked in the thirties. On my way out there were snow flurries in the air. What a disappointment that was! I am tired of non-stop snow. I am more than ready to see things begin to grow.
I took a tour of the yard looking for signs of spring. Some of my herbs look ready to start growing. The daffodils are poking out of the dirt. There are no buds on the trees yet, but that is good for those making maple syrup. Once the buds form the season is finished.
Last year my son tried his hand at making maple syrup. He had a small cooker that was used outdoors. He managed to get some syrup, but not as much as he dreamed of. He is rethinking his system. This year he made arrangements to buy a couple gallons from the neighbor. It was good for his son to see the whole process though. If you have never seen the process you have no idea what hard work it really is. There are open houses in our area this coming weekend. If you and your family have not experienced making maple syrup up close and personal, go visit a farm. The people are happy to share their experiences with you. It is a rite of spring around here.
Some of my shrubs took a beating this winter. When the heavy snow slid off the porch roof it broke branches. I'm not sure about my dwarf pines either. They may not make it. It looks like they got wind burned. We'll just have to wait and see.
Every morning the birds have been singing up a storm. A robin came to check out an old nest that is on the bird feeder. Could it be the same one that used it last summer? We watched four baby robins grow and gradually take flight.
The peepers have been in fine form as well. The old timers used to say they had to freeze down three times before it was really spring. I think they may still have a time or two to go but I am not sure.
Although I cleaned out my small garden in the fall, it is still a mess because of the last leaves that fell and the mountain of snow that was moved out of the driveway. Some sunny warm day I will dig it out once again.
Last year I had onions, tomatoes, and herbs. I tried some lettuce, but the rabbits got that. I love garden lettuce though so I just may try it again. Maybe if I put it into one of the flower boxes it will survive to maturity.
We officially passed the spring equinox over the weekend. Although that is not a guarantee of spring weather at least if there is snow it will not last.
I am not in favor of moving daylight savings time up like we have for the last couple years. I enjoy the extra hours in the evening but I really miss getting up with daylight. We had just gotten to the point where it was light in the morning!
Now, I watch the sun come up. It has not been nice enough for me to take my morning coffee outdoors yet, but I know that day is coming.
Kudos go to the young people at Southwestern Central School. I saw their production of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat". It was fabulous. I was impressed with everything about it from the wonderful costumes and scenery to the rich clear voices of those with singing parts.
I noticed in the program that the young man who played Joseph was a novice as far as theater experience. He was only a sophomore so maybe there are more productions in his future.
Soon Warren County youth will be doing their spring musical. Our young people deserve our support. Putting on a production takes hours of work on and off the stage. Going to the student performances provides excellent entertainment at a very reasonable price. Be sure to get your tickets early.
Think spring, folks, and just maybe it will be here.
Ann Swanson writes from her home in Russell. Contact at firstname.lastname@example.org