What's Your Favorite Part of Spring?

| 4/8/2009 6:11:08 PM


Pair of Goats 
 They may not be kids any more, but these pretty goats
 are probably just as giddy about fresh green grass
 snacks and warm weather as any newbie.

Finally! Today is the first day in Kansas that's really felt like spring. We've gotten oh-so-close a couple of times before, but today's a perfect 66 degrees Fahrenheit, with the sun streaming down and literally not a single cloud in the sky. Even the slight breeze is warm. It's the kind of day where the only right thing to do is get outside and drink it in, let the warmth chase the chill from your bones.

Actually, winter is my favorite season, hands down. But spring more than carries its weight as a season to celebrate. Living in Kansas, it's the variance of the seasons — the melting and mixing that draws a new face on the earth and an altered mood into the air — that sings with life. The seasons here roll through constant change, usually in a moderate flux, sometimes calming into a steady hum, and, occasionally, exploding in roiling, earthshaking assertions of vigor. The changes seem to mirror all the moods and stages we go through, from rowdy jubilance to the quiet moments we each sometimes crave, to rest, reflect and regenerate. Though winter carries the most magic in my heart, it's the moving onward that's fully captivating and invigorating. And it's the full expression of each season that leaves us hungry for the next, so we can grasp the gifts and trials of each, fresh and eager with anticipation.

So, as it does every year, the land here is transforming. Colors that have hidden for months are peeking hello. The earth is softening in a gesture of hospitality to seeds and saplings, and all variety of animals and birds are making sounds, rustling and chatting as they shake out their fur and stretch high into warm wind. As all of this busyness is commencing, we're all looking forward to something, maybe seeing a particular flower or enjoying dinner on the porch. 

For me, spring's knob-kneed kid goats make everything right in the world. And there are few things more reassuring than the spattering, sliding and sometimes clamoring sound of spring rain on the roof. But truth be told, nothing says spring (or home) more than the deep, pungent smell of freshly turned soil. Every inch of our farm exuded that fragrance this time of year. Whether you were in the middle of the walnut grove or smack in the center of a field waiting for corn, it was inescapable, rich and smelled more than anything else like life. You can do anything with soil like that. It carries all the promise in the world, if you're willing to do your part. Even if you don't, not an inch will go to waste. A few weeks from now, flowers, weeds, grasses and insects by the dozen will be pushing and buzzing and thriving in and around that soil. There's nothing like that smell, nothing.

What are you most looking forward to, or already relishing, this spring?

john g_2
4/2/2010 8:37:15 PM

82 degrees here, just finished planting the garden. potatoes, squash,beans,peas,onions( white,purple and yellow),watermelon,cantaloupes,corn,radish,turnips and on and on. need to wait till the 15th or so for the tomatoes. the raspberries,blackberries allthe fruit trees are in bloom, looks like it is going to be a great year. 7:09 p.m. now and stll bright daylight outside. days are getting warmer and longer and the pants are getting shorter and shoes are becoming less and less. the boys ( our two dogs, buddy and pepe ) got in trouble today for playing cowdogs with the neighbors herd of cows. nuff for now. peace

Steve Thyng
3/29/2010 9:20:18 PM

What I am most looking forward to this Spring is receiving issues of Mother Earth News in which the endlessly platitudinous eco/environmentalism articles have once and for all vanished, having been replaced by the good old how to articles that Mother Earth News built its reputation on in its early years. So, what are the chances, guys?

Cindy Mc_2
3/29/2010 4:57:47 PM

Having grown up in Kansas and still living here, I love the vivid, tender, fresh green of winter wheat springing up in the fields. For me, it is a shade of green that brings tears to my eyes and shouts SPRING! I also love the first time I hear a mourning dove's song. I can't wait until the garden dries out enough to get my hands in the soil. Finally, I agree with Lindsey; the smell of the first fire in the grill and the sizzle and aroma of bison burgers, which will be happening in about an hour!

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