“No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn.”

It has been an o’er-long winter here in Nebraska.  I don’t hate winter. At the dropping of the first cold temperatures in the fall, there is a pleasant sort of longing for pots of hot soup bubbling on the stove, cozy wood fires in the living room’s wood stove, and pulling the wool blankets and quilts out of the cedar chest.  Winter is the time for coziness, hearty foods, and family. Board games and old movies and frost in the eyelashes.

But winter can drag on too long here.  Robert Schuller has been quoted as saying “Never cut a tree down in the wintertime.  Never make a negative decision in the low time.  Never make your most important decisions when you are in your worst moods.  Wait.  Be patient.  The storm will pass. The spring will come.” I am trying to be patient as I wait.  I am, I am.

We all get a bit testy by the end of a long winter at having to pull on three layers ( or six) every morning, just to stay comfortable.  Hauling wood for the wood stove and making fires every morning gets old and downright onerous.  The longing to just pack away the wool coats and the heavy sweaters gets pretty strong.  The thought of making one more pot of soup begins to irritate me beyond reason.  I begin to turn to fresh fruit and green salads for most of our meals, and I dream of having a garden again.  I’m ready for spring.  I’m ready to turn the kiddos out of the house and to sweep away all the cobwebs and the dust that accumulates during the “low time.”  I’m ready to see green out of my windows instead of grey and brown.  (Sigh.)

So the usual anticipation for spring has been mighty keen here at our house, and that anticipation has been tempered–for me, anyway–by a bit of dread.  Last summer’s historic drought and record-high temperatures killed many trees and bushes in our area.  We’ll have quite a chore to cut them all down and dispose of them.  But what I’ve been wondering is how many other plants and grasses might be dead, but hiding their melancholy deadness from me.

Cover of a 1911 publication of The Secret Garden

Isn’t this a beautiful cover? It’s the 1911 publication of The Secret Garden,by Frances Hodgson Burnett.

We had a bit of rain a few nights ago, and it was a joyful experience, for me, to walk around our place the next day and discover that my rhubarb is coming up in my garden, as hoped.  Though it looked quite, quite dead last fall it is, in fact, alive! The row of lilac bushes that also appeared dead are, in fact, sending shoots up from the roots.  Most of the catalpa trees and plum bushes that I watered through the long summer but didn’t appear very thrifty, are plumping up their dear buds.  And many other plants that I had assumed were dead, are actually alive, after all!  I felt like I was Mary Lennox in The Secret Garden, discovering shoots and buds and flowers hidden underneath the detritus of an abandoned garden.  Have you read this book?  You should, if you haven’t yet.

It was my very favorite book when I was a young girl, and is part of the reason, perhaps, that I love gardening so much now.

So now, without further ado:  here are a few pictures from my spring day rambles.

This little sedum comes up in a dainty floret shape.

This little sedum comes up in a dainty floret shape.

 

Here our cat, Trissy, poses with some miniature daffodils.

Here our cat, Trissy, poses with some miniature daffodils.

 

These are the bud-casings from the silver maple tree nearby, accumulated on the roof and washed down the downspout during the rain.  What more promise of spring could their be?

These are the bud-skins from the silver maple tree nearby, accumulated on the roof and washed down the downspout during the rain. What more promise of spring could there be?

The row of crabapple trees that we planted are budding out . . .

The row of crabapple trees that we planted are showing some life . . .

 

Bryan has one hive of honeybees (out of three) that survived the winter, and I see that they are quite busy collecting pollen.

Bryan has one hive of honeybees (out of three) that survived the winter, and its inhabitants are quite busy collecting pollen.

If these tulips wait a few days, they won't get nipped by the cold temperatures that are forecast for the next couple of days . . .

If these tulips wait a few days, they won’t get nipped by the cold temperatures that are forecast.

 

Our college student Bethie was home for the day and taught little Mack and Amalia all she knew about archery.  She won lots of medals in 4-H archery competitions.

Our college student Bethie was home for the day and taught little Mack and Amalia all she knew about archery. She won lots of medals in 4-H archery competitions.

My chickens are thrilled to be let out of their yard to clip little bits of grass and find a few bugs for their supper.

My chickens are thrilled to be let out of their yard to clip little bits of grass and find a few bugs for their supper.

 

Clothes snapping on the line in the spring breeze is always a delight to see.

Clothes snapping on the line in the spring breeze is always a delight to see.

 

Rhubarb is coming up!

Rhubarb is coming up!

So there you go, Gentle Reader, harbingers of spring at our place:  tender young flowers, bulging buds, happy kids and animals and chickens, all promises that spring this year will not “skip its turn.”

What are the harbingers of spring at your place?  Has spring showed up yet?  How do you deal with an o’er-long winter season?

16 thoughts on ““No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn.”

  1. Harriet Stack

    I love the photos! I spent my teenage years living in the Far East so have never found the UK Winter easy since. We’ve had a lot of snow, lasting longer than usual, and the coldest Easter on record. It is just starting to ease off a bit now, and of course we have had daffodils etc for a while, but it’s not warm enough to open the windows or put on fewer layers yet. The Spring will come, but we do hope that, unlike last year, we get some sort of Summer as well!

  2. Nita

    Ah, Spring, the promise of renewal. Love your post and pictures, especially the clothes flapping in the breeze. One of the best parts of Spring and Summer, using the clothesline.

  3. Shawn

    Well, its not fair to compare your winter and mine. What I enjoyed during this season you will enjoy during the summer months that I am indoor prisoner. Our leaves are out and we have beautiful shades of green right now. The lawn has been mowed twice. We have a month or two left and then the heat comes in and makes life miserable.

  4. The Great Gordino

    Yep, we’ve had a long’un for sure on this side of the pond – we had snow in Easter week, and the odd day even approaching feeling like spring have been pounced on like showgirls spotting a sequin from fifty yards.
    That spring in the air is a joy to breath in, long and deep breaths, and this year it will be sweeter than ever, (even though it might be June by then!)
    G

  5. Suerae Stein

    Oh Amy, winter is too long here in New Hampshire as well, but I too, saw some true signs that spring is well on its way. I just posted about seeing my first beautiful newt of the year. April is my favorite month because of all these promises of spring, with no nasty black flies or mosquitoes… yet! Your photos are wonderful. One just needs to look at those to feel spring in the air. 🙂

  6. Carrie

    Robert Schuller’s quote is a good reminder. We live in New Hampshire and feel very similar. My post today was about signs of spring – guess we are all thinking the same! Hang in there – it WILL get better!
    Carrie

  7. Mae

    I love this post. Well, firstly, I love your blog name. LOVE LOVE.

    And yes, just learning now to de-stress and remove negative energy is a huge lesson for me lately… when your brain isn’t clear, making decisions during that time is bad stuff. I really resonated with that paragraph. I love reading you rejoice and come alive as things awaken with the anticipation of spring. Our spring is already making way for summer in Hawaii, but the rains and fog and wind could sometimes get you down–I realize I’m spoiled as I say this, but location is relative–life is life wherever you go.

    Your garden will be lovely! Can’t wait to see more.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      It’s Thursday now, Tammi, and it’s been snowing lightly all day. Lovely, but it’s APRIL!!! Where in Nebraska do you live?

  8. Arla DeField - SayingNoWithoutFeelingGuilty.com

    I have 5 daffodils blooming as I walk to my front door. The other day it rained and two of the were face down on the sidewalk, but they seem to have brushed off their spring show and are not standing tall again! I know it is spring because I have two coats by the front door, my super heavy winter jacket and my, “I almost don’t need a jacket” jacket!

  9. Carolina HeartStrings

    We have short winters, long summers and two seasons that are almost non-existent: spring & fall. Would love a little more time in those latter two where you can open the windows and not melt.

    Interesting how the signs of spring vary in this great world 🙂

  10. Anita-Clare Field

    How wonderful, I think we could all do with a bit of spring in our lives, it’s so symbolic and to me signals growth and newness. The daffodils in our new garden are starting to spring forth which makes me very happy 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Anti-Spam Quiz:

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.