He left his shovel. There is a great deal of work to be done before the rain comes again. Many inches of rain have followed the snow and lush growth overwhelms some spaces while seeds are still packaged. And, there are rabbits. Very large rabbits.
Rabbits have been rare visitors to the hilltop. For years we only saw them down near the driveway. And I envisioned them living in the bank of the hill under tree roots. I believed Beatrix Potter.
Actually, I believed Mr & Mrs Fox had everything under control and were serving rabbit pie to their young. I think they must have moved since I now watch the bold, joyous antics of celebration as rabbits roam the garden area taking bites here and there.
On the last sunny note – gold in the garden –
While the rains came, I decided to purge my cookbook and recipe collection. It went badly. There were piles everywhere and I thought I might just put everything back, but that never seems to work either.
So, procrastination led me to play on-line where beautiful inspiration draws me to Botanic Blue. Oh my, Judith wrote on Organizing Keepsakes in Baskets and my problem was solved – for today.
Ta-Da! Now they are all in a basket with a vintage hand towel, recipe cards, a pen and a notebook! The book sale items have moved to their box, the counter is clean, and I am smiling! I love creative solutions! Even temporary ones.
But, those shelves are still full! How did that happen?
Memorial Day, 2014
I’m thinking of my Uncle John today and all my now questions unasked and his stories never told.
I remember my mother saying that he had been part of the troops of the Normandy Invasion and fought on through the end of the war. I really had no idea then what that even meant. I regret that I never took the time to ask, listen and understand his part in the events that shaped our world. I regret that I never thought to thank him and appreciate his heart of courage.
But what I do remember and so appreciate was his great smile that showed forth his joy of being with us. Maybe that is all that really matters now.
He came back. I left breakfast cooking on the stove and ran out the living room door, camera in hand, to stalk the pheasant who was stalking about the back yard.
Fortunately hubby was attentive to the kitchen issues as I waited on the bird to walk behind a stump or tree so he could not see me moving closer and closer to him.
I’m sure he was watching me but he gave no indication of distress.
I actually wanted to see him take off but he would not gratify my desire but walked on and on. I went in to breakfast excited to check out the photos to share him again.
Early in the morning on the warm spring air, scent drifts through the garden chores and speaks to me of Mom.
And I remember the bottle with the French name that sat on her dressing table tray. She taught us to take the tiniest bit on a finger and daintily apply it to wrist and neck. Muguet Des Bois Eau de Toilette.
I only pick a few Lily of the Valley blooms but they are enough to bring back her smile and her laughter this spring morning.
I believe these to all be mosses. Brilliant greens against the dry old leaves and litter of the forest floor; living color shining as filtered light dances down through new leaves tossing in the wind.
“He makes me lie down in green pastures…He restores my soul”, a long ago shepherd boy said.
While not a pasture, looking at these simple plants slowly forming soft colonies and feeling their gentle cushion as I tread gently on some was amazingly restorative. I am so grateful for small wonders!
As I was involved with food for the dinner table, there was a shout from hubby, “Pheasant!” Our food was forgotten as I found the camera, careful not to startle our feathered friends at their dinner.
The color and markings were extraordinary. Pheasant is a rare sighting here.
Taking photos through window glass certainly reduces clarity and focus is difficult. If you click on the first photo, you will be able to see the wonderful markings more clearly.
Information on the Ring-necked Pheasant can be found here.
April seemed determined to linger on and on. She seemed sullen this year. Finally, on a clear day, the cleanup from February’s gift of ice was done and the overwhelming piles of broken limbs and down trees were gone. In the last moments of that very long day we had to decide where to dispose of the last of the pine logs. The crazy result is our new rustic bench.
You can’t tell from the photo, but it has been carefully placed among viburnum and dogwood to the back and sides. Ferns grow near and groundcover will fill in. In time, it will just be part of the growing forest floor. For added charm, I found another chunk of pine log for a plant table. I will post another photo when the “room” is more decorated!
I was sad that the tree, which already had considerable size over 40 years ago, was so damaged in the storm. But as I have found through the years, once removed, it is hard to really remember a tree for so much new fills the eye. The young dogwoods are just coming into bloom now and will become that new and different focal point on the hillside.
April did bring fresh greens and early wonder-full bloom. Bluebells, Bleeding hearts, Violets, Trollius and Vincas followed Jonquils and Lenten Roses.
And then, an almost spiteful ending came with pounding, relentless rain drowning the grounds and roads. After days and nights of storm, it was such a relief to change the calendar page on a sunny day and enjoy the beauty of lingering raindrops on growing leavesThe afternoon was spent keeping appointments. Then clouds came again and rain poured through sunlight. We were driving home, rounded a corner, came out of the woods and were startled by the beauty so poorly captured by camera. Rainbows! In them I see all the promises of compassion – grace and mercy – for the storms of life. I love them! Have you seen a rainbow lately?
The House Wrens have returned to the magnolia tree and sing the morning open.