After two days of grey darkness and chilly weather, with pounding rain throughout Saturday night, sunshine returned.
The temperature hovered at the freezing mark all day, but a clear blue sky makes the world brighter and entices me outdoors, even if for a short time.
We had errands in town this morning, including a quick gathering of groceries.
As usual, I took along a book.
I was only a few pages into the latest Ann Cleeves mystery, "Seagull" when Jim returned to the car; he had needed to sort an error in his driver's license and it was taken care of very quickly.
Home again, riding past fields and pastures wearing drab mid-winter shades of brown and tan with here and there a patch of faded green.
Jim lumbered off with the truck and trailer to fetch another load of slabs from a local sawmill.
January saw us burning a fair amount of wood and Jim has found that the hardwood slabs sliced to stove lengths are a good back-up for the 'chunks' that he cut and split earlier.
With great strength of mind I laid my book on the small table in the alcove and dealt with cleaning and laundry.
I served the cats their 'tea', made a simple lunch of salad and hamburgers.
I had saved lettuce trimmings for the goats next door, so bundled into a warm old jacket, hung my camera over my shoulder and set off along the lane.
The milk goats immediately noticed that I was carrying a container, indicating a possible treat. They surged toward the fence, jostling each other as I tossed lettuce over the fence.
I trudged along the verge by the mailbox, hoping to see evidence of wild daffodils.
None have yet sent up green shoots in the tussocks of tangled and sodden grass that extend from the pasture.
A car stopped on the road beside me--friends whom I've not seen since Christmas.
We 'caught up' with each other, exchanging news, chatting, until a pickup truck chugged up behind.
A wave to our friends and I clambered back through the matted grass, camera in hand, wanting a close up shot of the cluster of dried pods rising above a tangle of brush.
They appear to be the seed pods of trumpet vine--yet I don't recall noting the brilliant orange-red blooms in that spot during the summer.
Late afternoon sun was gilding the willows and assorted saplings that rim the wet weather brook beyond the fence, even as the western ridge cast cold shadows over the dooryard.
The earliest blooming stalks of the amaryllis reached their beautiful best as the weekend approached.
The bi-colored plant has a third stem ready to bloom.
A second and third stalk are already showing velvety red buds on the amaryllis in the glass vase.
Many times each day my eyes are drawn to these graceful and exotic bursts of color, so encouraging when the weather outside is lacking in cheer.
I had thoughts both yesterday and today of getting on with the small quilt in progress.
The piecing is done, blocks sewn together, borders added.
I have everything available to add the appliques which will complete the quilt top--so why am I procrastinating?
I can usually overcome 'tired' by the motivation of 'commencing' to work at a project.
It must be laziness--one of those too frequent times when I can't cudgel myself into creativity.
Tomorrow looms with no definite plans--perhaps inspiration and a measure of energy will resurface!