We're in the fourth day of an unseasonal heat wave with temps in the high 80's. It wouldn't be so bad if we were used to it but the sudden change in temperature has everyone cranky. The cats are lazing around, sleeping all day and working at night. The dogs are just trying to keep cool by laying on the stone walkway. When the heat wave started, buds were just little blips on the ends of tree branches. The heatwave has put every bit of nature into overdrive and green leaves are emerging so quickly. It's nature in warp speed. It makes me a bit sad that I haven't had a couple of weeks to enjoy it all. The older I get, the more I realize that a person only has so many springtimes in their lives -- I want to enjoy each one as much as I can.
Having high temperatures without the leaves on the trees feels totally wrong for New England. There is no place to hide - especially for the sheep who are used to spending their days sleeping under shade trees and along leafy fencelines. They have been quite motionless all day long. When the sun starts to go down lower in the sky, they begin grazing and eat all night long. With the windows open we can hear them calling to each other as the night turns to day. It is a lovely noise.
We have about 80 lambs here in our pastures just outside our door. It has been quite fun to watch them explore their new fields. The lamb races happen every night at around sunset although now the lambs are much larger.
My magnolia trees burst into full flower yesterday. The lovely scent is wafting around the yard. I planted two magnolia trees when we first moved here to remind me of my grandmother Frieda. She had a big old magnolia tree in her back yard in Dover. Under it, she had some pink metal furniture. Every year when the magnolia tree was blooming, she would call us over to her house. We would sit under the tree and eat cookies and drink lemonade. There was only a few days each year when this would happen and I have fond memories of Gram waiting for the blooms and my sisters and I waiting for cookies.
Gram was no nonsense through and through. After the magnolia tree would bloom, she would start complaining about the nasty blossoms and how they were littering her yard. She'd be out there with a rake picking them all up and composting them behind her garage. She would complain about all the work that tree made her and think about cutting it down. I always found that kind of funny - how she could love something so much and then complain about it. But that was Gram - she spoke her mind every minute.
I guess I'm a bit different than Gram - definitely not as neat as a pin as she was. I love the day my magnolia tree blooms. I let my magnolia blossoms fall to the ground. They turn brown and shrivel up and the wind takes them away.
Last night I took Julia out to look and smell the blossoms and told her about my grandma's magnolia tree. Then we walked down in the pasture to visit the sheep. It was hot and a sign of the coming season. The blackflies have hatched and the mosquitoes aren't far behind. Spring got a huge kick-start and I'm thinking about all that needs to be done......