Flowers and Christmas in Spring- An Update

One of the best parts of spring for me is finding the “gift” of a lovely wildflower when I’m out walking with my dog in the morning. These white ones are popping up along the RR easement and in some yards. Not mine, however. 🙁 I wish I had some. Because of the shade, the flowers look bluish, but they are actually a stark white, and it’s so nice to see them nestled in high grass in fields that aren’t mowed.

Cluster of small white flowers with 6 petals. Nestled in grass.
If anyone knows what these are called, I’d love to know.

I took a picture of these flowers, not because they are necessarily pretty, but I was intrigued by their unusual display and colors. Perchance if you know what these are please share.

Two pinkish/red flowers against a green background. Six thick petals on one.


It appears that I wasn’t patient enough. What I thought were blossoms weren’t. 🙂 This is what they looked like on Sunday. But I still don’t know what the flower is.

My dog, Dusty, walks with me, and will patiently stand and wait while I’m doing strange things with my phone. Well, strange to him, I’m sure. 🙂 He’s a good boy.

When I read Slim Randles’ post for today, I realized my flowery introduction was perfect. Even more so because I’d started this blog post before reading his essay. He sent these columns for April in March, and I hadn’t checked this one before deciding it was just time to have another offering from Slim.

I’m still smiling at the serendipity!

Today, I have a guest post over at Dru Ann Love’s blog, Dru’s Book Musing and her feature A Day in The Life. Dru graciously invited Angel to share a day in her life as a Dallas police officer. Angel’s post is about how she badgered me to write Brutal Season, the fourth book in the Seasons Mystery Series. Hop on over to read the post, then come back for the essay from Slim. Go ahead. we’ll wait.

Good. You’re back. Now, help me welcome Slim and enjoy his story. As always, his offerings here are from his nationally-syndicated column, Home Country, that appears in hundreds of newspapers in the U.S. and a few in other countries. He’s been a colleague and friend for many years & I’m so grateful that he shares his wit and wisdom with my readers here.

Spring mornings are a lot like Christmas. Each day we get up and go out into the yard, or walk along the creek or visit the horses in the pasture. And each day, each morning, we find something new the sun has brought us.

Pinfeather leaves of an unbelievable green now start showing on cottonwoods that have stood like stark ghostly frames all through the cold winter. Hopeful blades of grass peek through clumps of brown left over from last summer’s verdant pasture. Everywhere we look there is something new and different.

A lot of this Christmas-in-spring is kept just among us, because we might be accused of being … well … poetic if we told people why we were really carrying that coffee cup out into the yard. So we say lame things like “I think I’ll get some of that fresh air this morning.”

What we really mean, of course, is “I want to see if Richardson’s bay mare has had that foal yet.”

Some of us have worked very hard last fall and winter to prepare for this spring. By grafting. OK, we have a Granny Smith apple tree. Let’s see if we can’t get a branch of Rome Beauties or Jonagolds to grow on it, too. And we understand completely that where we live no olive tree can survive the winter. That isn’t supposed to stop us from trying, is it?

Nature pitches us a boatload of challenges each day that we’re alive. This plant needs more water than falls naturally here. That tree can’t take the temperatures we get. This little tree needs soil with more organic matter in it.

And those challenges are the stuff winter dreams are made of.

We do the best we can to cure the lack, the freeze, the drought, and then we wait for April. We wait impatiently until we can come out of the house some morning and check the apple tree and see tiny green leaves coming on the grafted branch. We search the bare ground where we planted that new kind of seed that won’t grow here – to see if it’ll grow here.

It is a continuing feast of green, a triumph of anticipation. An April morning can make us want to sing.

Brought to you by Strange Tales of Alaska, available now on Amazon.

Banner with Home Country written on it. Old red pickup on the left and headshot of Slim Randles on the right. He's smiling and wearing a white cowboy hat.

Check out all of Slim’s award-winning books at his Goodreads Page and in better bookstores and bunkhouses throughout the free world.

All of the posts here are from his syndicated column, Home Country that is read in hundreds of newspapers across the country. I am always happy to have him share his wit and wisdom here.

Slim Randles is a veteran newspaperman, hunting guide, cowboy and dog musher. He was a feature writer and columnist for The Anchorage Daily News for 10 years and guided hunters in the Alaska Range and the Talkeetna Mountains. A resident of New Mexico now for more than 30 years, Randles is the prize-winning author of a dozen books, and is host of two podcasts and a television program.

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