Tag Archives: Seasons

Welcome May

Did you celebrate May Day?

When I was a child, the tradition was to make a paper cone basket, add some early flowers, take the gift to a neighbor, and run away before they answered the door.

Or did you have a party? Special food? Dancing? Is a May Pole part of your tradition?

The month of May includes lots of good things. Warmer weather to plant gardens. Grass, nurtured by spring rain, races toward the sun. Mother’s Day is celebrated in the United States. My high school and college graduations had May dates — as did those for my children. Memorial Day — to remember those fallen in war — ends the month. (And begins the summer weekend traditions.)

The delicate blossoms of lily-of-the-valley greet people from shady spots in flower beds. This official flower of the month is one of my favorites. Breath deep — can you imagine the scent?

Forget the Date…

The calendar claimed spring arrived on March 20.

I’m not sure about where you live, but this year, signs of spring were sparse on that date in my neighborhood. For one thing — my azalea showed only a hint of bud on that date. No fool — my plants waited for warmer days to open blossoms.

A better sign of spring that a date on a calendar?

The photo is from several years ago — but when the forsythia blooms on the berm — spring is in the air!

The cheerful, yellow flowers of early spring lift a person’s spirts and give promise of life after the gloom and gray of winter.

Do you have favorite early spring flower?

A New Season?

Less than a week ago, spring arrived on the calendar.

I’m not sure about your location, but here in the Midwest…

Mother Nature appears to have been confused much of March. She’d give us a day or two of spring, then step back to winter. Wait — how about a taste of summer? Within a span of three or four days we’d have every season — except for fall color.

I scrolled through photos inspecting views from recent Marches. Many of them ended with photos of spring flowers. Perhaps a few lucky, or talented, gardeners will have blooms this month — however I will need to be satisfied with one lonely crocus. (I tend to forget I planted some years ago and one hangs on.)

Kite flying season is in full swing in this puzzle. When did you last fly a kite? Do you have a suitable place close to home?

Is it Spring Yet?

According to my calendar, spring begins in two days.

According to the scene out my window — I’m not so sure.

March is one of those unpredictable months — even more so than others. Some years you think Mother Nature is having mood swings as the temperature soars on a sunny afternoon a day or two before measurable snow buries the brave daffodils and tulips. Will it rain? Some days. Snow? Possible. Sleet? Maybe. Ice? I hope not.

Perhaps it’s best to wait until the March temper tantrum passes before sending out new growth — or switching to summer wardrobe.

March 1 — a good time to keep buds closed.
April 1 — I hope this weather is not a joke.

While the ash tree cautiously opens to show leaves, the grass greened without hesitation.

Seasonal Dress

Do you live where Mother Nature gifts you with all four seasons?

Poets extoll the virtues of spring. Farmers and gardeners toil in summer heat. Students begin school with high expectations (or maybe it’s the parents with the expectations) in the fall. Winter brings thoughts of hot drinks and snug places.

Evidence of winter abounds in this view of a small playground. The parent’s bench looks a little short — and cool. No sled required. Climbing? A bit of ice makes it a challenge with your mittens. As you may expect, the play equipment was not popular on this winter day. The next day? I can feature a small person, bundled up tromping around and calling out — look at me! Can you imagine the laughter resulting from taking the slide and landing in a soft snow pile?

A New Page

Welcome to February!

Did January bring problems? Resolutions broken? Goals forgotten?

Cheer up! Today we can turn the page and start fresh.

Who made a silly rule you can only set goals and make resolutions in January? A case can be made for changing a habit or behavior at the beginning of any month — or week — or pick a day. (You birthday, perhaps.)

A new photo on the calendar. Lots of space in notebook or pad.

Let’s grab a positive attitude and stride forward into February.

Calling the Weary

Dear Reader,

Rest here, exhausted hiker. Or child who has explored the playground. Or while waiting to meet your companion.

My branches have sheltered all. Spiders and insects, squirrels and birds, deer and human.

I’m taking my own rest now in this December photo. Two or three more cycles of the moon will occur before the nutrients I draw from deep in the earth will reach the now dormant leaf buds. Then — well — I’m one of the heralds of spring. How large are my new leaves? Dare farmers and gardeners plant tender crops? Which songbirds flit on my branches chirping, finding mates, and setting up housekeeping?

Summer can be intense. I like a cooling rain–good for my roots. Summer is when many seek my shade — either on the ground or among my branches.

But all things are subject to the cycle of seasons. My leaves lose function and turn from green to brown — perhaps a hint of dull yellow or deep red if the rain and temperature have been kind. And then, well, unlike humans. I shed my leafy clothing before I go to sleep. Behold my branches — stand back and admire my reach — plan your climbing route. (Remember you need to come down.)

I’ll be here — before and after your active, or restful, day at the park.


The Tree

Age Unknown

Once upon a time, a tree sprouted in St. Louis County. The plant grew, and grew. Through the years it hosted birds and squirrels. Shade provided relief from summer heat to rabbits, chipmunks, and other creatures. Through the years it stretched upward. Spread branches in an enlarging circle.

And then…

Branches turned dry and brittle. Needles changed from green to brown. Less and less wind became necessary for an impromptu prune.

Experts arrived. Hydraulic arms lifted a man up high. A chainsaw whirred.

After the sawdust settled and the wooden corpse was hauled away, this remains. How many years did the pine tree live? No rings. The ruler in the photo is twelve inches — so my guess is a multiple of the twenty years I lived across a narrow walkway.

If this were an animated movie — Ms. Squirrel could gather the neighbors and regal them with a “stump” speech.

2021 — The Year That Was…

Farewell, 2021! Here’s hoping the New Year brings improvement for each and every one of my readers!

(No reason to waste a good imitation of a grave in my front yard. Sort of a summary of the year. [Actual reason for mound of dirt was repair of a water main break.] Yes, I expect some of you can imagine items other than large diameter PVC pipe below the turned earth.)

So I say to fellow- writers: Turn the imagination loose and write the story that goes with the photo.

Readers: Try something new in 2022 — a new genre, a new author, a new format.

More than One Day!

Happy Holidays!!!

Yes, more than one. Christmas Day 2021 is in the rear-view mirror as this post goes “live”. But the celebration does not need to end. New Years is only a few days away. Friends and relatives still have birthdays — birthday cake among the cookies & candy?

Long ago, when I was a child, the days between Christmas and New Years were busy. All the normal chores. New toys, games, and gadgets to try. People to visit while they still had their tree up — everyone I knew used a real tree and they had a limited life span.

So draw a deep breath. Pull courage up from your toes. And keep the holiday spirit in your heart for days — and weeks — to come.

Frosty peeks around the tree to greet you and wish you Happy Holidays. He’s smiling because: a) he has a cardinal on his hat? b) the presents are for him? c) 2021 is drawing to a close?