(See the note at the bottom for the latest update on spring!)
I do not know why I had them take hats, mittens, and boots as we headed out the door this morning. It must have been a remnant thought from growing up in the backwoods of Vermont: living on a dead end, dirt road that was full of hills where we often got stuck at the bottom and had to walk the rest of the way home during the many snowstorms? I am sure that is it.
My oldest asked me why they needed all this stuff. "Is this in case we have to walk home?" It suddenly dawned on me that we would probably not walk home if we should go off on the highway, or some far off place, but the old warning that "accidents always happen close to home" rang in my head. "You never know," I answered him. "It doesn't hurt to have them just in case."
Well, the good news is that nothing happened to us while we were out driving the the snow. The snow blew around us as we had the pleasure of listening to Lamplighter Theater's, "Buried in the Snow" (how appropriate!). The way home became quite slick and took much longer than the trip out though. It seemed that the snow had accumulated even more and once again the plows were only plowing the main roads and seemed to be avoiding the back roads, but our old van handled it well. We did not need the extra hats and mittens. God is good!
I do love the snow, but once March arrives, that love tends to shut off and the longing for spring sets in. The idea of fresh air coming through my windows, with soft green grass just outside my door beckons to me. The image of crocuses and snow drops dotting the entire left side of my yard gives my cabin fevered mind a pleasant, much needed rest. Even the Lily of the Valley plants I have on the side of my house yearn to bud forth from the snow packed earth and stretch their bright green leaves and stems. Yes, I am very ready for spring. Seeing that it is early in the month, (I consider the 8th of March still early), I am assuming we can still say, "In like a lion, so out like a lamb." It leaves much promise for a calm end of March - a good start to springtime!
I was very excited to discover that we have red tailed hawks building a nest in a tree near our house. I had seen them around the yard over the last few weeks, but just a few days ago, one of the children noticed that they had sticks in their beaks. I looked around and found the rather large nest in the nook of a tall tree where three limbs twisted up in three different directions. It almost looks like the huge eagle's nest I once saw in Maine, during a family vacation at one of the lakes. I remember floating out toward the nest on my little raft, excited to be going close to the nest, but scared the eagle might get mad and swoop down on me to protect her babies. I was also scared of the crazy loon that kept diving into the water and popping up in totally unpredictable spots. I did not want it to come up under my raft and pop it while I was in the middle of the lake!
I did not get too close to the nest, but we watched the mother and father feed their two babies through binoculars, which was the best, and safest, way to see them up close. I have no idea what to expect with the hawks in our neighborhood, but I do hope they do not eat all my little birds that come feed at my feeder. Yet, having them here will be interesting and thought provoking, though once the leaves grow in on the trees, we will not be able to see them as well.
The other day I came across this verse in Deut 32:11, "As an eagle stirreth up her nest, fluttereth over her young, spreadeth abroad her wings, taketh them, beareth them on her wings:" and it made me think once again how awesome the creation of God really is. It speaks to everyone around of His marvelous love to each and every person that walks upon His earth. It shows how little and foolish man really is - he has no control over any circumstance that comes his way, no matter how he may try to work every detail out. God is truly in control of everything and once we learn that truth, we can simply trust Him to continue to take care of us. So, stop and take a good look around you; enjoy the beauty of the snowflakes (each flake is different than each other, just like people!), smell the soon to come roses, and focus on the touch of God that fills our lives with wonder everywhere. And just maybe, I will have more interesting things to say about the newest neighbors in our backyard.
I stepped outside this morning and found 50 degree weather, bright sunshine that gave me brief snowblindness, and dripping eaves on roof. I had the spring cleaning bug suddenly strike as I smelled that fresh air so I opened the windows to let that fresh air in. Yes, there is something about the promise of spring in the air. I just know I will see those flowers popping up sooner than later. Thank the Lord for springtime!