Anne Shirley famously declared “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.”
I agree, Anne. October is lovely. But I’m going to instead say this.
“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Marches.”
This is a bold statement for me. March and I have never gotten along well. This year I decided I would change that. Sometimes the old adage holds up, “if you put your mind to it…” There is something remarkable about weathering a challenging season that makes the beauty on the other side sing more loudly. The joy that follows a long winter is palpable. You see it on neighbors as you walk by each other on that first warm day, a shared smile. You can hear it in the voices of children squealing with pleasure at the playgrounds once again. The smells of dirt and rain are richer, the colors of green and purple and yellow beginning to delicately peep through the cold dry ground appear more vivid. It happens every year and every year it is a delight for the soul.
We made it. At last. And there is so much joy on the other side.
It feels as if our winter has said its last farewell. Obviously we could be dumped with snow tomorrow. And if that happens I welcome it. UPDATE: After writing this post and just before it went to publish, latest models predict 20 inches of snow next week. I still stand by my argument that winter has begun its curtain call. That doesn’t mean it can’t come back for one last bow.
The crocuses have already begun their hellos through that cold dark dirt. We have felt the sun. Whether or not signs of winter will creep back in does not matter. We are in a spring state of mind and that makes all the difference.
March was good to us. I would like to thank that is because I greeted it more openly this year. The early part of the month still brought snow but the temperatures were kinder. The sun finally showed up to play. And then as if accepting its graceful exit, winter seems to be slowly stepped aside for spring’s debut.
At the end of winter into spring, Currently I’m…
Taking…leaps in my writing with new opportunities. There have been some great new developments this month as well as new challenges I am putting forward for myself. Excited to share more about this soon!
Reading…more books, mostly non-fiction. Deep Work and The Read Aloud Family were so good I breezed through both in a few days. Up next, a new to me mystery series Maisie Dobbs. I also have plenty of writing books I am excited to read for inspiration.
Celebrating…Caroline on stage for music concerts, dance recital, and student of the month. The girl had a big month! And usually all this special attention causes great anxiety for her. But with each new day she grows more brave. I’m learning from you, little one.
Snow Playing…as the sun came out, so did we. Snow fort building, sled riding, snow shoe tromping. It felt so good to actually have fun in the winter instead of staring at it from inside with polar vortex temperatures outside.
Planning…my vegetable garden. I’m devouring all of the books on square foot gardening. There is so much to learn. So I am also trying to remind myself to have fun with it and live in the space of being a beginner in the garden.
Gathering…with friends. Both spontaneous and planned gatherings with friends this month were so life giving. The hibernation effect of winter combined with the little children effect can make it difficult to socialize. When friends join in with our children into the lego creating, train building, foosball playing, silly dance party of it all, that makes life worth living. Plus, it’s always fun for me to get to play in the kitchen again serving food to people who appreciate it.
Creating…along side the little ones more. Caroline and I found a new way of making friendship bracelets that is equal parts simple, relaxing, with beautiful results. Elliott, my child who will not sit for a beat, unless he is making a beat, has a new interest in painting. We will put on some music, pull out watercolors and water, and he will dive in. Creating is important to my soul, but creating beside them is a gift.
Escaping…on a downtown adventure! Technically this was in April but we'll call it the perfect transitional activity from March into April. For the second year in a row we took the kids on a mini stay-cation in our city to mark the beginning of spring break. We loaded up a backpack and our double stroller, walked to the local train station, and set off to a magical place called THE EMBASSY SUITES. You would have thought we had taken our kids to Disney World. We swam in the pool, we ate snacks and fancy cocktails, we watched a movie, ate a big breakfast with WHATEVER YOU WANTED, and we even got to ride up and down the elevator so many times Caroline worried she would forget how to use the stairs. We sandwiched the excursion on either side with lunch and bowling at our neighborhood bowling alley and brewery, and a trip to the Mill City Museum. It seemed quite simple to us but to our children it was THE BEST FUN EVER.
I would say that’s the perfect way to cap off our March.
So what’s next?
APRIL! MY BIRTHDAY MONTH!
While I have made up with March and kind of like it a little bit, no month makes my heart sing like a robin more than April. And this April I plan on making it a good one.
This weekend I have a trip to catch up with dear friends in Chicago. There will be lots of chatting, probably some crying, plenty of laughing, good food, new baby snuggles, in home spa treatments, and likely some good wine. I couldn’t ask for more. ANOTHER UPDATE: Writing this to you from a bed after the stomach flu forced me to cancel this trip. I’m crushed by this. Proof that sometimes our bodies are in charge and we have to put our social calendars on hold. Also grateful I’m very much loved and cared for.
I have big plans for my actual birthday day where I will be giving my family a kiss and then escaping them to read, write, drink, eat, write, drink, eat some more. Ahhh…sounds devine. Leo may not be into it being away from me the entire day. But I think this will good for us, or just me.
We also have an even more important birthday to celebrate at the end of the month for my grandmother’s 90th. 90 years. Incredible. What a gift it must be to have the wisdom of so many years on this earth. I cannot wait to hug my Gramma and celebrate her.
And in between all of these celebrations there will be more and more sunshine to enjoy. Hopefully garden preparation will be underway soon. And I have started a daily writing practice I want to share about.
So much to begin!