March 4, 2016

Oh, give us pleasure in the flowers today...

Life can have its spectacular vacations, trips to see loved ones, or adventures in a different city.  But most of our days consist of far less glamorous meetings, trips to the dentist, laundry, grocery shopping, paying bills, shoveling snow.  I've learned to savor the sweet moments of ordinary days to lift my spirits, especially in this rather dreary in-between season where spring teases and winter answers back.  

As I crested the hill right before my driveway last night, the setting sun gave me this spectacular view.  I startled my husband when I ran in the house, flung my purse and gloves on the counter, grabbed my camera and ran back outside, but this picture was worth the scurry.

This morning I awoke to a beautiful sunrise, as captured from my bedroom window.  I love the crescent moon and the pink tinged sky, a lovely welcome to the new day.  It's hard to feel grumpy when your day is book-ended with beauty!

And what about the in-between moments?  Of course there are lots of hours in between sunrise and sunset, so I take delight in the small things that please me.  One of those small things is a simple vase I recently found at my favorite antiques store.  A long time admirer of McCoy pottery, I had found this particular style of vase a few years ago on Ebay, but for a price I wasn't willing to spend (close to $100!!). I have searched for years for a rectangular vase that could serve as a replacement for a favorite graduation gift from a special family member, that was accidentally broken when my children were young.  She was our family's beloved "story lady", a librarian who delighted in telling us fanciful stories that I have passed on to my children.  My "graduation" vase was brown and tall, rather than wide, with lovely flowers on the front.  I've searched for years for a similar one and thought this McCoy vase was particularly nice.  I know I can't really replace a special gift, but a similar one would still remind me of Eva Lois and her gift of magical stories.  

So you can imagine my delight when I found my long-desired vase at the antiques store two weeks ago, for the truly magical price of $18.00!  Not a chip or scratch on it, either.  I absolutely love the yellow bird set in the middle of the vase.  The vase has given me so much pleasure over the last two weeks--filled with cheerful daffodils the first week, and this week sunny alstroemeria grace my kitchen island.  

It really is the little things in life, isn't it?  And of course, for me, one of my favorite simple delights and spirit-lifters is poetry, such as this lovely A Prayer in Spring by Robert Frost.

 Oh, give us pleasure in the flowers to-day;
And give us not to think so far away
As the uncertain harvest; keep us here
All simply in the springing of the year.

Oh, give us pleasure in the orchard white,
Like nothing else by day, like ghosts by night;
And make us happy in the happy bees,
The swarm dilating round the perfect trees.

And make us happy in the darting bird
That suddenly above the bees is heard,
The meteor that thrusts in with needle bill,
And off a blossom in mid air stands still.

For this is love and nothing else is love,
The which it is reserved for God above
To sanctify to what far ends He will,
But which it only needs that we fulfill. 

Happy Friday, my friends.

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