Spring Life

Spring is starting to unfold.


With daffodils glowing in the early morning light, and grocery stores bursting with tulips.  My shopping basket is crowded with shiny pastel eggs and too many chocolate bunnies, and the bakery is selling sweet Easter bread shaped into braids and Easter lambs.


The Easter lambs taste just like Sara Lee pound cake.  Delicious, although they remind me of Gussy, so we’re not yet sure whether we like eating Easter lambs….

And the morning birds are back!  This guy gets so tired watching birds from the kitchen window, he falls asleep.


It is a glorious time of year, with weekends overtaken by food coloring and spray paint, Boy Scouts, baking, and designing sets for the school play.



Most of that is fun, but I could do without the endless debate over what clothes are okay to wear around spray paint.  “But I won’t get any paint on me!  Why can’t I just wear these pants?!”


Sigh.  No, you can’t wear those pants!


The upside of kids and spray paint is that I have someone making me all these lovely, golden leaves.


Spring also means dusting off our bicycles for Fahrrad Wien, a yearly Bike Festival in Vienna, when the city stops traffic and invites thousands of bikers to ride together around town.  There are costumes, music, unicycles and weird tandems, and 40,000 people from young to old.  This guy was passing out drinks from his Drink Bike.

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I guess the only condition to participate is being able to keep your balance?


We are fortunately in excellent command of our balance!  Jake and Eli are faster these days and want to “ride up front with their friends,” so I suppose this means there will be more pictures of Mike and me now.  And the start of a downward spiral for this blog….

Time for more pictures of the cat!



Spring feels overwhelming, with the sense of new starts and expectations.  Those soft, green baby leaves are just beginning their lives as Leaves.  What if I don’t wake up early enough to see the ever-earlier sunrises?  What if nobody buys those tulips, and they end up drooping in a bucket?

What if nobody likes my cupcakes?


Is it a bad idea to let Eli and Jake burn things on the balcony with their magnifying glasses?  They used to do that in Africa.

“Mom, this is a good day to set things on fire.”



At 11 years old, the boys’ energy is growing.  Do kids change in the spring?  Do we all change in the spring?  Does God keep giving us spring, over and over again, to remind us that no matter how old we are, we are not dead yet?



Spring is full of grace.  The grace of a flower.  The grace of fresh blueberries on your oatmeal, or a glass of milk with too much food coloring.



The grace of dog-piling on the bed.  Or is that a cat-pile?


Today we are packing for Spring Break, playing soccer in the courtyard, and buying new dirt for the basil plant.   We’re making burgers and melting mozzarella on the grill, and I’m feeling proud of my Hot Cross Bunnies.



Some other Spring details I’m holding onto:

Jake and Eli Recording a Podcast with their Friends


Going to Demel for Breakfast


Playing catch with Dad in the Park


Eli’s Book Report Sandwich


A Private Tour of Mathausen with the Embassy’s Military Officers


Wine on Saturday Afternoon


Dying Easter eggs with the kids next door (and hiding my glass of wine)



Meeting Old Friends in Lisbon


Trying to teach Dolphin to swim.

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Gussy Cat!  We are always coming home and finding Gussy’s dolphin in his water bowl.  He is really smart.

Of all our life’s details right now, Gussy is the absolute best.  Thank goodness for our kitty.  Thank goodness for spring.  Maybe it isn’t about expectations, but just seeing the grace in the leaves and the tulips, and being grateful to live for what we are, today.