Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Cherry Blossoms and Snow

I'm grateful that we didn't get the fifteen inches of snow that was sort of predicted, although out where we live it's pretty hard to determine just how much actually accumulated in this last storm. The wind has blown some areas almost bare, while there are two to three foot drifts in other places. The "plow man" came to dig us out yesterday afternoon while the wind was still howling, so the gravel driveway is drifted over already. But I'm thankful that the main driveway is still open enough to use.

I'm thankful for my husband, Tom, who allows me to laugh at him without getting mad at me. Like those times when he wears his hat in a funny way, or when, like yesterday, he had his turtleneck on inside out and backwards, so that just under his chin it said Land's End. "Did you get dressed in the dark?" I asked him, laughing. "Well, it was dark inside the turtleneck when I put it on." I'm grateful that he realizes (I hope he realizes) that I laugh with joy and delight because I love him so much.

I'm grateful for my kids, grateful that soon I will have a daughter (in-law). I'm thankful that Andy doesn't think I'm a lazy sloth when he sees me napping in the middle of the day.

I'm thankful that my Mom seems to be content with her living arrangement and that my brother maintains his sense of humor even while he deals with all too many medical issues. I'm grateful that he has been sober for a whole year now. I'm thankful for Tom's family, even though some of them post photos of themselves in warmer, tropical climes on facebook while I'm looking for my boots and gloves. Yes, I'm thankful for them, and glad they could get away.

I'm grateful that Tom has had a job for the past year even while we pray that it will continue for another year.

I'm thankful for my new-ish friends, people I didn't really know five years ago, but who were so kind and supportive of us after Andy's crash in '06. I'm thankful for old friends and the times we can get together and catch up. I'm thankful for colleagues who care about me and how I am doing.

I'm thankful for Valentine's Day flowers that cheer up the house. I'm thankful for battery operated LED candles made of real wax and that have timers so I can set them up high in the living room and dining room to help chase away the winter darkness without worrying about burning down the house.

A few weeks ago, I found a bucket filled with sticks in the floral department of the grocery store. I thought they were pussy-willows, but discovered that, no, they were branches from cherry trees, with blossoms just about to pop. There was no way I could walk away from something like that, so I bought a bunch, rationalizing that I could give some to my Mom.

The blossoming cherry branches in the big vase reached their peak on Sunday, while snow blew and the wind raged outside. It took awhile, but I was able to get a good picture of them and the snow. But now, the petals are falling and soon the mess will be enough to warrant tossing the sticks into the woods. That's ok, though. The sun is high enough that the snow on our black-top is melting. Spring is only a month away.

Thanks, Steve, for telling me I'd feel better if I sat down and wrote something. You were right. The cherry blossom picture up there is for you.