GAYS MILLS - As I sit down at my desk–in my office that gets no natural light, I can hardly believe that its nearing 75 degrees outside. Or at least that's what the app on my phone tells me.
I managed to escape my fluorescently lit room during the lunch hour to walk the streets of Fennimore in search of the elusive crocus. I read a book recently titled ‘Yellow Crocus’ and it reminded me of the flower that spells S-P-R-I-N-G to me.
I didn't have to walk far to encounter a lone purple crocus lost in a sea of little blue flowers. It was a delightful site, after the last few yards where I had rushed after a bit of color only to find out it was a scrap of garbage that I had mistaken for the delicate tiny flower. All of this sunshine and delights of spring make it hard to believe that by the time you read this we will have endured yet more snow.
At the Schendel-Dremsa household we tried to take advantage of the good weather we were given. We took both kids out into the fresh air while we did yard work and scraped up forgotten piles of leaves and twigs.
Poor little Waylon has never seen much in the way of warm Wisconsin weather. He of course was outside in Mexico, but the little lad was primarily shaded and hidden in an attempt to keep his fair, fragile baby skin safe. However, a 70-degree day in April in Wisconsin, well that is mighty fine weather if you’re a baby. Although he had a stuffy nose (a welcome back to daycare present I suppose), he sat on my lap and sniffed at the air the best he could. Wagging his arms and legs excitedly when he caught a whiff of something that was new to him. In that moment, he reminded me of a happy little beagle also enjoying the spring. The plethora of chirping birds didn't disappoint his sensory experience either as he looked around with a wide-eyed gaze.
Thatcher on the other hand has made a habit of getting outside whenever he could. Slipping snow boots on over his footie pajamas in a rush to get out the door to chase his dad. But, there is something intoxicating about truly fresh air, especially after a warm spring rain like Sunday brought. For an almost three year old, this experience with nature led him to march around the yard, hollering at the top of his lungs “AVOCADO!!!! AVOCADO!!!” along with some incoherent gibberish, that sounded rather joyous.
In between shouting about avocados, Thatcher managed to also unearth his child-sized shovel. Much to his delight the ground was soft and the worms were plentiful. And according to Thatcher, they prefer dangling from tree branches over wiggling in the dirt.
The poor, elderly, massively obese hound dog Bud however hasn't seemed to gotten he best out of the new springtime weather. The old waddling beast managed to continue his spring tradition of getting into a tangle with a skunk. It appears, judging by the lack of remains scattered about my yard, the skunk won. Despite his fowl odor, he was able to come up and sneak in a sniff and lick on the babies toes, which seemed to bring him satisfaction as he wandered back over to his tree and flopped back down with a heavy sigh.
As for Chasca and me, we went about the usual task of trying to make our yard look like a yard and not a wild jungle or scrap pile. Each year, we’ve pecked away a little more and each year have found some kind of strange relic from previous residents.
This spring seems to be the year of just starting fresh. We hacked away a bunch of branches and shrubs that were half alive and even managed to agree on new plantings. We discovered we needed to redo our strawberry bed, after the same fat dog mentioned previously laid on all of the plants during the fall to sun himself and killed them. Same with the flowers by the door, but at least he’s not lying in the road, I suppose.
Chasca and I don't really agree very much on landscape vision. When I explain something I want to do, he looks at me as though I handed him an extremely smelly diaper. But with the help of Thatcher and his new little shovel maybe I’ll manage to sneak a few new landscaping changes in under his nose.