Thursday, March 27, 2008

Unwelcome Winter

I'm glad to see that the weather is changing from frozen nose hairs and painful breathing to something more civilized, but it is sure taking its sweet time doing so. Lady Di saw her first robin of the season, so real Spring weather can't be far. Since the big thaw is still about a week away, I have had time to anxiously anticipate the benefits of suffering through a long winter. Winter sure does a good job preparing you for the joys of Spring.

One fun Springtime tradition for Lady Di and myself, is to go on our second Easter Egg hunt of the year. This yearly ritual starts as soon as the snow melts in the yard, exposing a bounty of brown 'Liberty eggs' hidden there, throughout the winter, by our family dog. Timing is important in that you want to start the collecting after the snow has melted, but before the 'eggs' start to dissolve. Rubber gloves, a bucket and a clothespin are required equipment.

Now, on to more pleasant Springtime bonuses.

I love the smell of Springtime. After, the 'egg' collecting, of course. When the ground softens it lets loose an earthy smell that tells you that winter is over.

I can also look forward to the trees and bushes budding. The lilac bushes already have swollen buds and need just one really warm day to start leafing. The cranberry bushes and maple trees are also ready to go. Pretty soon the oak and pine trees will follow suit.

It is amazing how much you miss hearing songbirds chirping outside, until you welcome all of the migrating species back to your backyard in the spring.

Another Spring smell is the smell of backyard grilling. Lighter fluid and thick steaks tell you outdoor fun can now be started.

Other things, like sidewalk chalk, kids on bikes and sunshine in the morning and evening also help to break the winter chill.

Finally, the best part about Spring and warm weather is.......getting the mower ready for lawn season. Once Liberty's free fertilizer is cleared, I can put down some real lawn food and grass seed to fix the spots Liberty killed this winter. Soon, the vibrant color of green appears for the first time in five months. In a typical Minnesota winter, the dominant colors of the landscape are white, gray and dirty white. So green is a pretty important color for our sanity. Once enough green grows, the first smell of fresh lawn clippings soon follows. I seem to use my nose quite a bit in Springtime. It must be because my nose has been abused all winter by Kleenex and Vick's.

So there you have it. The calendar and the seed catalogs in the mail both tell me that Spring is here. The snow that is left on the ground is putting up an argument to the contrary. I sure hope the thermometer settles this disagreement and lets Spring do what is it supposed to do.


a husband said...

Ah spring time! Gotta love it, especially after a long, gray, cold winter. We're just now starting to see life spring up all around us.

Stumbled across your blog though a comment on someone else's.

samokdaddy said...

Yes, all of those things signify that a long Minnesota winter is slipping away. I am sooooo happy for that.

Twins baseball is indeed on its way. If I'm grilling, I've got the radio on with the familiar sounds of John "Flash" Gordon and Danny "The Dazzle Man" Gladden. I still like Dick and Bert on TV, but all in all I'd rather be at the games. I'm really looking forward to 2010 to be outside and at the ballpark. I'll be there with my "Circle Me Bert" sign.

Lex Ham Rand said...

Erg. You just reminded me of all of our "Reese" eggs that should be plucked. I used to be able to give my son $10 to do the whole job, but now he passes on that opportunity.

Anonymous said...

We are more than ready for Spring here. If I have to see much more snow I will crack.

DJ Kirkby said...

Oh what a lovely post! I feel all smiley now. N3S and I will spend tomorrow making seed pots out of old newspaper and planting the first seeds ( Carrot, Tomato, Lettuce, Sunflowers and Runner beans) to propogate on the kitchen windowsills. We've got some potao plants that have self propogated from our compost I assume so we will have some nice fresh spuds early on this year. Public Health came through with an offer to match the wage I am currently on so I have taken that job, at least it means N3S can continue horse riding!

Jon D (Graco) said...

"Liberty" eggs. lol I'm starting to see the sidewalk chalk all over the neighborhood here in PA. Yep, believe Spring has just about sprung - at long last!

Above Average Joe said...

Couldnt agree more.

creative-type dad said...

Over here in L.A., it usually goes from Fall to Spring - there is no winter.

So that means no vacation from the lawnmower!

Russell said...

Enjoyed your comments and thanks for visiting my blog yesterday.

My daughter is studying pharmacy at Drake. She is finishing her second year and has done great so far - mostly all A's (bragging father who never did nearly that well in college!!).

She has been accepted into the pharmacy school and will be working at a HyVee pharmacy in Des Moines this summer.

Are you putting on crabgrass preventer and fertilizer this spring? I just paid for my annual 6 bags yesterday - I have over 3 acres to cover and will spread it later in April. I get a 20% discount if I buy it in March.

Regarding the yard, yes, yes, I spent a few hours picking up after our two dogs the other day! A sign of spring I guess.

I enjoy your blog and will try to respond more often. Take care and good luck with your spring preparations. I am thining of letter the lawn go natural as I think of $3 plus gas...!

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I'm a 40 year old dad of two. My wonderful wife, Lady Di, and I try to keep the kids from blowing things up here in central Minnesota.