Sunday, April 28, 2013

Spring Bling

Shorn blades of grass along the roadsides herald a change of seasons. The hillsides are daily greener with bursts of color from the purple haze of the red bud to the random patch of white dogwood. Flower beds around the house are popping with tulips. A friend points out that the deer won’t likely chomp my soon to be planted garden if they haven’t eaten their favorite garden flower snack.

Birds call and tweet their sweet tunes before the sun rises. Their gentle conversations accompany me as I string, restring, and string again beads. I am ever closer to the pattern I cannot visualize but sense is there. Inspired by my great grandmother's necklace made of graduated clear round balls with contrasting black accents, there are large clear crystals, as if from a chandelier, to contrast with smaller black ones. Crackled quartz tubes and tiny black crystals divide them. Like nature around me, I too am ready to show off. It's my version of spring bling.

The hills of Ohio offers many perks, but shopping is not one of them. I have a knack for selecting ties, likely due to a willingness to seek out and pay for beautiful silk. With the recent transition to civilian life, there is a tie deficit in my husband’s wardrobe. A birthday gift search led me to an Etsy shop in England. The morning of my husband’s recent birthday, I pulled a brown paper wrapped package out from hiding and asked him to open it as he was dressing for work. The tie popped with color and the silk shimmered. Handmade, it was exactly long enough. I left a note of appreciation for the shop.

The next day, avoiding the dreaded task of completing my continuing education hours for my nursing license, I scanned the email inbox and found this note:

Thank you ever so much! Your kind words couldn't have come at a better time...I went over to the silk mill today to place my very first order for silks woven exactly to my specifications, so I felt the confidence boost when I made the final decisions on the bus ride over.

With a happy spot brightening my heart, I turn to the morning tasks at hand. Seedling containers are schlepped outside to harden for the upcoming garden transfer, the newly planted ume tree watered, a load of laundry is hung in the sun, and the breakfast dishes are sorted into the dishwasher. As the way to my post-poned task begins to clear,  the doorbell chimes unexpectedly. I invite my neighbor inside. She asks, “What are you doing?” I reply, “Cleaning my kitchen.” Though scullery maid is a necessary part of having fresh real food on the table, I do for once wish I was able to say, “Working on my continuing education credits for my nursing license.”

Five miles later, I stumble along a trail sucking wind and lifting my feet just enough to skim over the top of sticks and rocks. My neighbor calls out the names of flowers and trees and gives me the lay of the land conversing with a steady even breathing pattern. I’m not oblivious to the signs of spring, but concentrating on the physical demands for which I am suddenly engaged.

When we return home, I tell her about the email in my morning inbox by way of saying that I’m a grateful she chose to ask me along this day. I finish half of the necessary license requirements and think, I can do this. It is nice to be bolstered in unexpected ways exactly when needed.

Spring Bling