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Saturday, February 22, 2014

Can't Control the Weather, So Control the Attitude

Winter has been brutal with one snowstorm after another and temperatures in the teens or lower. It seemed as soon as the roads were decent and paths shoveled, we would get bombarded with the work all over again.
I am sure many people swore they were going to move or at least questioned themselves as to why they live where they do. There are times when we would say to ourselves that we are sick of all the work, that we are just tired of it all.

This Sunday afternoon the temperature climbed to 50 degrees and it was so good to get outside for a spell to clear the head, get some fresh air and enjoy the warmth of the sun. 
I've always enjoyed sitting on the front stoop of our deck, sipping a cup of coffee, and contemplating all the work that needs to be done once the weather breaks. With each passing winter season I stare at this Norway Maple and reflect on how tall it is getting. One of the few trees planted on our property when we moved here 23 years ago, its height makes me wonder what we've been doing all these years. Was it time well spent or should we have gone in another direction.

It just takes a little sun to seep into our bones to rejuvenate our spirits and get the energy flowing. Rather than that "to do" list continuing to drag down my mood, I can feel the old spark returning to "get started".

I suppose that is why people tolerate the cold and inconvenience of the winter months. We can always depend on the four seasons to keep us from getting bored. By the time we are sick of the summer's heat, the nip of fall and all the harvest activities are right around the corner. Once all the trees are bare and the gray of November settles upon us, we have the excitement of a white Christmas to look forward to. By the time our backs are aching from dealing with shoveling, we are counting down the days till spring. And when we are sick that fifth "mud" season, the sun returns in all its glory to heat things up, dry things out, and get us motivated in the planning of our summer vacations.

There is a magic in the arrival of spring. By March, we are so antsy from our need for fresh air, color, sun,  and the connection with growing things, that the draw to nurseries for those first potted flowers is like a balm for the soul.

By now, those who cannot wait to get their hands back in the dirt of their gardens are busy with the planting and care of their seedling trays, and dream of this year's garden plan layout.

Once the temperatures are tolerable, yet still too far away from the last frost date, it is time to get done those other outdoor projects such as early spring pruning and cutting back those now depleted seed heads on the plants left to feed the birds. It is time to check on our lawn and garden equipment and get things in working order before the mowing season begins. 

Perhaps it is that first smell of newly cut grass that helps us relish in the satisfaction of making it through another winter and helping us to really appreciate why we live where we do.

And then when we see the return of the swallows, the first daffodils, that first fluttering butterfly......
Perhaps we need the silence of winter to get us to notice