Early Spring

Spring is very much in the air, however, I've met the warmish temperatures and delicate flowers with confused emotion. I associate Spring as a reward for a hard-fought winter (blame my East Coast roots for that puritanical view). Back East, the first buds that peek through are a relief and a sign of warmth to come. But, with the exception of a few completely frigid days in December and early January, Portland didn't have a winter.

Since I've flipped the calendar to 2015, I've enjoyed more days of sun than the previous two winters I've lived here, and barely donned a coat at all. Camellias and cherry blossoms started to bloom in late December! And now, this first week of March, the flowers in these photos, taken just a week ago, seemed dated. Certain camellias are dropping, while magnolias have risen up to take their place and tulips aren't a wistful hope but an almost reality.

Despite not sporting red, wind-chapped skin or feeling complete disgust at yet another "sweater weather" day, I still appreciate the blooms. Life is better when a walk down the street is sprinkled with pastels and interesting light patterns. When a run is dotted with perfumed smells. When light begins to linger in our backyard before dipping below the holly trees. Spring is here. And maybe next year, we'll have a Winter.