Friday dawned sunny and
I hurried to do several loads of laundry and pegged jeans and shirts and a huge quilt on the lines.
It was a day for opening windows to fresh air and for attacking the accumulation of ashy dust which is the down side of cozy wood fires.
Will accompanied me as I fed horse, emptied litter boxes and prowled the dooryard for signs of spring.
Here he is walking along the edge of J.'s plastic-shrouded boat.
Willis had been splotting in the pool of rain water caught and held in the center of the tarp.
The pampered darlings had been inside for several days--too cold to have the sliding door open into the cat yard. Teasel and Chester sniff at each other like wary strangers.
Teasel dabs through the wire fence--I didn't see anything moving on the concrete wall of the basement bulkhead. Perhaps she was experimenting with a different texture after the smoothness of wood floors indoors and the cool damp grass of the cat yard.
These daffodils are really invincible. Since the relative warmth of January they alternately languished in cold windy days, nearly flattened last weekend by a sleety rain, then reviving with any hint of sun.
I found this tiny johnny-jump-up nestled in the weedy grass at the bottom of one of the flower strips.
Wild onion, invasive lamium, called hen-bit here--and a host of other evergreen weeds have thrived over the winter in the ground that I laboriously cleared in September.
Several of the roses are showing crimson leaf buds--I couldn't get as sharp a focus as I wanted.
More poppy seedlings have emerged, much too close together.
I'll likely attempt to move a few although my success in transplanting them last year was not impressive.
Each bloom is fleeting, but a much anticipated joy.
One healthy clump of lupine, where there should be several.
I pulled back the heavy curtains over the sliding doors early on Saturday morning, having stayed quietly in bed while watching the grey of night turn to the soft colors of dawn.
We have seen this marmalade and white Tom lurking about the yard and barns.
Here he was, eyeing me from the curbing just outside the cat play yard while at my feet Charlie and tribe rumbled warning growls from their safe place behind the glass.
Sigh. Stray, feral cats have been a bane where ever we have lived.
Raising my eyes from the Marmalade Tom I saw several deer in the upper field.
I crept out in fleecy robe and slippers, but they heard me and fled toward the woods, blurs of tan and white.
Notice the lead deer vaulting over the fence.
The morning was chilly and the faint promise of sun was not fulfilled.
Still, the air had an unmistakable scent of freshness that comes in early spring.
Robins called from the maples and old apple trees near the garden.
Retreating to the house, I stood warming my hands on a mug of coffee and watched the bluebirds swirl about the wooden nest box at the far end of the dooryard, while goldfinches, chickadees and tufted titmice thronged the birdfeeders.
In spite of increasing chill as night drew in the 'peepers' were chanting their shrill mating chorus along the banks of the creek across the road. We stood with neighbors on the porch to listen, encouraging each other at yet one more sign of winters' soon passing.
The only sun today was a faint wash of light slanting in the sliding doors just before sundown.
I didn't linger outside when I dealt with cat litter.
J. brought in extra wood for the evening with Willis standing watch at the shed door.
Like Willis, we have stayed close to the livingroom fire today.
I thought of starting a fire downstairs and sewing, but didn't get motivated past mere thinking.
A Maisie Dobbs mystery, mugs of tea, and the attentions of several cats who coveted my rocking chair claimed much of this quiet grey day.
Cardinals and finches shared the seeds which litter the ground under the feeders.
The sense of hunkering down and waiting out the foul weather has affected both humans and the birds and beasties who share our space, indoors and out.