FOTD: Hark, Ye Heralds of Spring!

I was definitely in the mood for spring, but then…
On Sunday – three days ago! – we had a snowstorm! About 3 inches of wet snow fell.

By yesterday, though, the snow was completely gone and the temperature rose to above 70°F! I was able to go out for a walk wearing a t-shirt!  I admired the daffodils along the route, and saw a painted lady butterfly which landed on the daffodils.
20190409_150856I made up a silly song about daffodils. I think of them as heralds of spring because they bloom early and look like trumpets. This is to the tune of the Christmas song, Hark the Herald Angels Sing. (I tried to maintain the rhythm of the song and  rhyme every two lines!)

Hark, ye heralds of the spring!
I just cannot help but sing!
Sun is out and air is warm,
Winter’s gone and spring is born!

Joyfully I walk outside
Everyone I meet says, “Hi!”
Daffodils along my way
Showing off their bright array

With their trumpets they proclaim,
“Flowers, come join our refrain!”
Butterflies and birds and bees
Color everywhere for all to see!

To see lots of spring color, go to Cee’s FOTD 4/18/19.


FOTD: Snowdrops

My snowdrops are full up! I’ve noticed more of them around the neighborhood this year also.  Snowdrops are special because they appear on average around the first day of spring, so they are one of nature’s first flowers of the year. These are in my garden:
I saw a plethora of snowdrops scattered along someone’s fence today while I was out walking.
Posted for Cee’s FOTD 3/28/19.

Early Signs of Spring!

I took a walk today – it was a bit windy but the temperature wasn’t bad – about 40°F and the sun was shining! Yesterday I saw my first robin of the year and today I noticed early flowers are beginning to appear! My snowdrops are coming up and a few are already blooming!
As I walked around the neighborhood, I looked for other signs of spring.

Early buds:
Pussy willow-type buds on another tree:
About 4 blocks from my house a homeowner has planted early crocuses around the base of a tree and they are always the flowers that bloom first – dozens of bright yellow crocus buds, some in full flower already!
A flower in full bloom


FOWC: Variety

Fandango Prompt of the Day: Variety

I live in a suburb northwest of Chicago.  I also have ADHD, which craves variety. My mind constantly looks for new things to distract me from, for example, the tedium of paying bills. Life can get tedious and routine, but there always ways to create variety. Although I dislike the cold and can’t wait for winter to be over, it would be weird to live in a place where the seasons don’t change much.


This is my home town of Des Plaines, IL, a few days after we returned from Israel in January.


In Northeastern Brazil, where I lived for two years in the 1980s, “winter” is the rainy season, so there are two winters per year! Nothing much changes; it just rains more and then the fruit trees produce their delicious fruits for human variety.  I admit I like the changing of the seasons, and I delight in seeing life reborn after a long winter. In this part of the U.S., the change in seasons allows us to experience the entire life cycle of plants and small critters.


snowdrops – the first sign of spring, these are the first flowers that appear in my garden!


Crocuses in a variety of colors are an early spring flower.

Some people like to eat the same things every day. I don’t do this, although I admit that I restrict my choice of breakfast to those foods which one usually associates with breakfast: eggs, oatmeal, pancakes, toast or English muffins with jam or honey. In the winter, I usually have soup for lunch, but that too gets boring. By dinnertime, I’m worn out thinking about what I can eat that is different but healthy, so we often go out!

Even my cat craves variety. We tried buying food in bulk with only a few selections and she soon got bored. So now we pick and choose a variety of flavors in her canned food.


Hazel likes variety in her food as well as her sleeping spots!

Travel is the way I usually get variety in my life. I have my habits and routines at home, which are comforting and comfortable, but there is nothing like traveling to a new place to awaken the excitement in me to experience something new! It’s even better when we travel in the winter, because even if the weather isn’t really pleasant in the places we visit, it is most likely better than being in Chicago!

1-29 enjoying a snack at Rijksmuseum

Enjoying a snack after touring the 2nd floor exhibits at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam in January 2018.

Breakfast in Egypt and Israel, for example, includes salads and a variety of breads to choose from. Street vendors provide variety by offering something I have never tasted before. In Israel last month, we came across a vendor selling “Jerusalem bagels” – these are nothing like the bagels we have here! They are elliptical in shape, and easy to share, because they are soft and light so it’s easy to tear off pieces for friends.


The breads piled up in the back on the left are Jerusalem bagels. But there are a variety of different snacks on offer here.

I admit to having fallen in love with Middle Eastern food. When I got home, what did I buy on my next trip to Costco? Things that reminded me of the places I’d just been – mini pitas, hummus, pomegranates – these all went into our shopping cart our second day back!

Eventually, though, I will get bored even of these things. Then it will be time to go somewhere different – France, which is where we are going in June! I have preconceived notions about French food and culture, but I am sure that I will find a variety of things to love and to wish I had when we return home!



CB&WPC: Winter Trees

In my previous post for RDP, I mentioned that we had a mild winter this past year. So mild, in fact that trees began budding in February.
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This was a couple of weeks after the biggest snow storm we had last February! But winter lingers and teases – when in March we all ready for spring, we get more snow.
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One thing I love to look at in winter is the full moon filtering through the leafless tree branches from our deck.
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By April, it was spring, with daffodils and tulips beginning to bloom! Often it is not until May that we see the full beauty of spring. May is a great time to take walks along the lake and watch Northwestern students celebrate the end of the semester! A hammock on a breezy May day is just the thing!
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Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Trees