bursts of cheer in a bleak landscape

yellow-crocus-bud

Things are looking pretty bleak these days. Just about all anyone can think about (including me) is the global coronavirus pandemic and the changes to our lives. I don’t really have a lot to say about that just now (or at least not that I have the energy for tonight). But I have realized that I want to make sure to include activities in my daily life that bring me joy.

purple-crocus

On that note, I decided to start blogging regularly again. Back when I was dealing with the social isolation of being a new parent in 2006, I started to blog. It helped me to connect with people outside my immediate circle. In the following several years, I got to know a lot of new people, many of whom I still consider dear friends.

yellow-crocus-in-sunPlus I had a lot of *fun* blogging. Some people who only know me in meatspace may not realize what a goofball I really am. This is how I like to react to stress: bad puns and general silliness. Also by sharing photos.

purple-yellow-crocus

Am I stressed now? You betcha. Who isn’t? At least my household is in pretty good shape for the next few weeks of social distancing. But unfortunately I’ve been a little sick for the last few days. (Maybe I’ll write about that tomorrow. Or maybe not.)

white-crocus

In any case, I’ve been enjoying these bright little crocuses that we planted last fall. They are springing up in my yard. Cheerful little heralds of brighter days to come. (Some day.)

transplants

Here is a collection of misplaced leaves and flowers that caught my eye over recent years.

A leaf caught in a flower and a ray of sunshine.

A magnolia petal pining for the pines.

An oak leaf hanging out with the big guys and trying to blend in.

This little periwinkle bloom looks right at home in these fronds of hosta.

A cheery maple leaf resting on a subdued bed of ivy.

magnolias in the rain

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These are some more photos of the same star magnolia tree I posted yesterday, that I also took last spring.

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These were taken a couple of days later, along with a number of other raindrop photos that I posted last year. I saved these to post another day, but somehow hadn’t gotten around to posting them yet.

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Looking back at these photos, I’m realizing that I haven’t been taking nearly as many photos over the last few months. I miss it.

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I should really fix myself back up with my macro lens and get back outside.

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Or inside. I should really just get back to using my camera.

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A few more of these photos are included in the slideshow below if you (like me) can’t get enough views of raindrops.

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The squirrels are better gardeners than I am.

It is quite generally known that I am not a gardener. I have a history of killing houseplants (unless they are of they are unattended root vegetables, in which case, they occasionally thrive.) One year, at my old house, I did clear out the garden plot left by the previous owners, and planted a vegetable garden. Things went quite well, until a woodchuck wandered in. After that, there was no more vegetable garden. (Woodchucks, by the way, are even worse gardeners than I am.) In any case, I left the garden to grow wild after that, and soon the vines and thorns took over.

Some years later, a splash of red caught my eye inside the tangle of vines and thorns. Tulips were springing up! I had planted vegetables there, not flowers, and we hadn’t had any red tulips. But there they were. I have heard that squirrels will bury stashes of food in the ground, and such stashes will sometimes include root bulbs as well as nuts and acorns. I can only guess that some squirrel had dug up someone else’s red tulip bulbs, and planted them in my untended garden. Unlike my ex-cucumbers, it would appear that tulip bulbs are not attractive to woodchucks. And so the tulips were left to grow.

Each year, the tulips return with more and more blooms, thriving in some squirrel’s secret garden.