Frosty Cherry Blossoms

Sunday’s blustery winds knocked cherry blossoms off the tree. Yesterday morning, frost dusted the blossoms. Frost is not the first thing that comes to mind when I picture cherry blossoms.

A few more sunny days and the cherry blossoms will be in full bloom.

I saw a bee flying about the cherry blossoms. Where is it spending these frigid nights?

The first of the salmon berries are in bloom. So are plenty of skunk cabbage. They’d look lovely in a vase, in your house, though the stench would soon drive you out of your house.

All Shapes and Sizes

The problem with buying graded eggs is that you’ll never run across an egg like this in the supermarket. The trick would be to breed a variety of chickens that consistently lays double yolk eggs like this.

This morning, flocks of swans, flying north, flew overhead. I could hear them coming, honking out of sight, until the burst into view. During the winter months when they are in the valley, they usually fly about in small groups of two to five or seven. And they’re usually in a single line. But when they take to the skies for a long haul, that’s when they fly in V formation.

I keep hoping they’ll fly by on their way north, to say one last, “Goodbye.” Today they did.

Though if I were a swan and I saw that the cherry trees were about to bloom, I’d hang around a few days to enjoy them.

What It Looks Like on the Other Side

This is what it looks like on the other side. On the other side of what? On the other side of the year where nights are longer than days. This far north, we are now on the side of the year where days are longer than nights.

There are other ways to divide the year into two. You have the time of the year when the days are getting longer and the time of the year when the nights are getting longer. These methods divide the year into equal halves.

Here in the Skagit Valley you could also divide the year into the time when there are swans, and the time when there are no swans. There are just a few swans here and there. Soon we will be in the time of year when there are no swans. But all is not hopeless, weeping and gnashing of teeth, sackcloth and ashes. We may be slipping into the time of year when there are no swans flying around, but as it is the time of year when the days are longer than the nights, joy and happiness abounds.

A more extreme division of the year is the time of year when there are cherry buds and blossoms, and the time of year when there are not. If I could pick the time of year, no the day I die, it would be a day of blue skies, puffy clouds, and cherry trees in full bloom. Wheel me out underneath a blooming cherry tree on a sunny day and let that be the last thing I see, the fragrance of cherry blossoms the last thing I breathe, the buzzing of bees in the cherry blossoms the last thing I hear.

March is Pink and Yellow

March is in its pink and yellow mood. Pink plum blossoms entice hummingbirds to visit. We watched one hover from one plum blossom to another. What does plum blossom nectar taste like? It’s be nice to have a hummingbird tongue to find out, a little retractable appendage at the tip of your tongue you could extend and enjoy what the hummingbirds enjoy when they dart from flower to flower.

The muddy winter fields have turned into carpets of brilliant yellow. I don’t think this is what daffodils had in mind when they evolved to produce showy, yellow flowers. Fields of daffodils in bloom mean that fields of tulips will be in full bloom soon. Then, March will be a riot of colors.

I Could Watch Clouds All Day

cloud before

I wouldn’t fault someone for doing nothing but watching the clouds all day long. On my way to the post office, the clouds dangled intriguingly in the southern sky. And twenty minutes later, they same clouds, in the same spot, had transformed into an enormous ring around the sun.

If clouds can pull a feat like that in twenty minutes, imagine all the wonderful things you’d see if you watched them all day long. You’d never get bored.

cloud after
plum buds
garden ducks

Spending an afternoon gardening with ducks releases more stress than a season’s worth of therapist sessions. There are too many therapists, not enough ducks in people’s lives.

duck foot

Duck’s feet are captivating with their intricate patterns. I could see a duck saying, “She had a pretty bill, wonderful colors on her feathers, but it was the patterns on her feet that did it for me.”

Happy and Sad at the Same Time

Spring is unfolding. The sun is moving north, the days are getting longer. The swans are fattening up to fly north, gathering the strength to take off and maybe never come back. Any week now, when I go down into the valley they will be gone. If they’d only fly by to let me know they are on their way north, it would mean a lot. But I mean nothing to them. They will never come say good bye to me. And they will never know how much they mean to me.

The crocus and daffodils are opening. The first of so many flowers to come.