A Ray of Sunshine

b.story 12.03.12 daffodils miniature

My daughter got in the car the other day and announced, “It smells like summer.”  The day had been one of those extraordinary early spring days where everything is warm and feels of promise.  The car had that earthy warm smell that comes from sitting in the sun after transporting two active children.  Perhaps it was because we had summer on the brain.  

One of the aspects I like the least about ‘modern-day’ life is the apparent need to plan out our summer vacation in February!!  Between the expense of plane tickets, the quick booking of camping sites and the scheduling of kid summer camps, our summer vacation needs to be carefully mapped out while there is still snow on the ground.  A recent facebook conversation centered on the need for children to enjoy their summer vacation, unencumbered by schedules and agendas.  Unfortunately for those of us who have to work during the summer this luxury comes, ironically, only after careful planning and plotting.  

The amount of time spent organizing a schedule so that my children have a couple weeks of the gloriously unscheduled, unstructured summer days we enjoyed as children leaves me, quite frankly, exhausted and overwhelmed.  I worry about satisfying deadlines and commitments while giving my children a summer vacation filled with childhood play.  So I have succumbed to the pressure and registered for an array of amazing summer camps designed to entertain my children, while setting aside a couple weeks of family time.  My only hope is that it doesn’t RAIN during those few weeks I have scheduled as my children’s classic summer vacation!

So our summer has a plan.  We have mapped out an agenda that balances work and play.  We are looking forward to the adventures ahead of us filled with sun on our skin and salt in our hair.

And then that warm ‘smells like summer’ feeling dissipates and we wake up to a dusting of snow on the ground.  The air around us is heavy and gray.  It is now hard to imagine that summer could be right around the corner.  Until I walk out my door and I notice my daffodil bulbs.  My crocus is always the first sign of spring.  But the daffodils are my favorite flower and represent that the sun will once again shine.  In the cold and the drizzle and the gray of an Oregon spring, the daffodil is a sign that the summer vacation we have dreamed of might just be around the corner.

My daffodil sprouts are tenacious, declaring that spring is on its way, even through the snow.





I love these miniature nodding heads of sunshine.






Last fall, I dug up all my old bulbs to divide and relocate.  I stored them in an old garbage can lid and was greeted the other day by a plateful of buds!









About the author
As a Landscape Designer and Architect, I have a passion for food and the land from which it grows. As a resident of Portland, Oregon I am fortunate that great food is easy to find and cultivate. And as a member of a wonderful family, I am lucky to have a husband and two children who enjoy my dalliances in restaurant sampling, park playing, creative cooking and garden tending as much as I do. I started this blog in 2010 (on what would have been my grandfather’s 100th birthday!) as an outlet for exploring and journaling the ways that we can eat, grow and live more sustainably on our earth. I believe we are at a critical juncture in our evolution where we need to closely look at our environment and decide to work with it rather than against it. Choosing foods that are grown and raised close to home. Appreciating and taking care of the land around us. Talking about it all over the dining table. These are a few of the many actions that will make our world a better place.