Suddenly Spring?

“Time changes tomorrow,” my husband said at our porch party Saturday morning. “I need to take down the white Christmas lights.”

Sometimes I resist change.

Hearing his announcement about daylight savings time, I felt a little unsettled. Out of sorts. It seemed I was late for something important and needed to hurry and catch up.

Weird, I know. And irrational.

Maybe it’s because we’re racing toward spring, and I’m not ready to say goodbye to winter.

And the lights were so beautiful.

I remembered how they looked when it snowed a few days earlier.

Almost magical.

I felt caught between winter and spring–like having children at home and then adapting to an empty next. “Why don’t we just leave them up all year?”

“Because time’s changing. More daylight hours. And if we never took them down, pretty soon, we wouldn’t even notice them.”

Later that day, I walked around the porch and spotted signs of spring.

The wreath tied with pink ribbon.

My rain boots.

The dwindling stack of firewood.

The rabbit under my grandmother’s old table.

Something occurred to me–

A few days ago, I’d noticed a thin layer of ice in the bird bath. The same day, daffodils on the side of the road waved.

Ice and daffodils. 

Like a van Gogh painting, the last hint of gray winter softly blended with the pastels of spring.

Maybe this transition helps us surrender the past and anticipate the future. 

And maybe God, in His mercy, often eases us into the next season of life.

Have you ever felt this way about time changing? Life changes? Family changes?

What season are you in right now?

Love,

Julie

 

 

Comments

  1. easing into the next season…yes. Love thinking about ice and daffodils…beautiful j…(and soooo love your wreath)Ohhhh, and what Ricky said: if we leave them up, pretty soon we won’t even notice them. So true about so many things.

  2. Thank you, Robin! Someone understands!!!!!

    Love you–Wreath came from target and I figured out (all by my little self) how to buy a pink ribbon and hang it. 🙂

  3. Like Robin, I felt the depth of Rick’s comment. Sometimes we have to deny ourselves some things so that we continue to recognize their brilliance. Blessings as you spring forward.

  4. Janice Garvin says:

    What a blessing you are Julie. Rick’s comment was very true…we become use to so many simple things in life that “matter.” Oh and I have the same rain boots. 😉

    • Hey Janice! People are resonating with what he said. I’m so glad.

      And I love my rain boots. Might need them tonight. Been raining in GA this afternoon.

      XO

  5. Cathy Mayfield says:

    “Hello, my name is Cathy, and I’m a no-change-aholic!”

    I may be the biggest culprit to clinging to the past. I do NOT like the season I’m in! Saying goodbye to cherished activities and people has never fit my agenda. I grieve deeply and longer than I should. For instance, today would have been my grandfather’s birthday, and just the remembrance of his love threw me in a tailspin and nearly wrecked my day. And he’s been gone almost 20 years!

    And yet, those very memories lay a foundation for who I am. Even the stories I love to tell began with those my grandfather and grandmother told me over countless cups of coffee. I even entitled the eulogy I wrote for my grandmother, “Coffee Cup Tales.” When I can hold back the tears long enough to share these stories, I feel one step closer to the peace I need to accept the drastic changes life has thrown at me when I wasn’t looking.

    When current changes threaten to defeat me, I often turn to writing those stories down with the help of a book called, Passwords to Your Past. These “passwords” have become a lifeline for me, as well as the passion which propelled me to work with seniors to help them write their stories. My daughter gave me a plaque which graces the wall in our kitchen – “Your story begins at home.”

    So do the changes. I’ll just keep repeating the altered version of the “Serenity Prayer” I heard a while back: “Lord, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know IT’S ME!” Maybe then, I can “surrender the past and anticipate the future.”

    • marci says:

      I was so touched reading your comment. And I must sit down and write — as you have some of the stories, bottled up and yearning to get out. You are right- it can be very emotional for us, and perhaps that is why I drag my feet. I do like the “passwords” and what a wonderful book that must be. I understand about those special dates and how they effect us. It doesn’t matter how many years. Sometimes we have to honor those times, we just have to ‘visit’ them but not stay in them, if that makes sense. One of my brothers passed away 38 yrs ago and he is always on my mind on those anniversary dates.

      How wonderful that the Lord is using your experiences. That He has given you the passion to help seniors get their stories told. It servse such a great need both for them and for us that follow.

      I so like the words of the plaque, and will have to remember them, and also the rewording of the Serenidy Prayer. I had to make a note of both of them. Thanks for the share.

      Just had to let you know that your writing touched me, and I have you in my prayers. I know well about the grieve deeply and longer than I should.

      God Bless!

      • Hey Marci’a!

        My comment about grieving longer that we should under Cathy’s precious words, that’s for you. And it’s sooooooo kind of you to pray for Cathy. Just makes me smile all the way to my toes–what happens in our little group. You’re such an encourager!

        Sending love to you for your dear brother and your feelings…..so beautiful, my friend. And I’m so sorry about his death.

        So much love, my friend.

      • Cathy Mayfield says:

        Precious Marci, thank you for your kind words and your prayers. The deepest grief I currently have deals with the death of my father, who was my hero, almost 8 years ago and with the broken relationships between two of my daughters and myself. We still get together and we still talk; in fact, my 19-yr-old still lives at home – for the present. My girls have always been my best friends, and I guess I knew this time would come, this moving on. But I never thought that Satan would ruin the last few years with a break in our relationship. I hope God brings redemption to those, sooner rather than later. My world revolves around how my family is living and loving.

        I have been praying for you, as well, and will ad this to my prayers. Love to you and yours.

        • Hey again Cathy.

          I’m lifting you and your girls in prayer. What came to me as I read this, is how God IS a God of reconciliation. He’s soooo good at bringing people together. And having 2 daughters, we went through some distant days in our relationships.

          So much love.

    • Oh, Cathy…..such depth and wisdom.

      Wow–what can I say? I love the titles and ideas you mention. You’re writing these, I hope, for publication? They sound amazing.

      And who’s to say how long is an appropriate amount of time to grieve? I just know that not grieving long enough gets us into trouble–that one I’ve experienced.

      I love the plaque on the wall–so profound and this version of The Serenity Prayer!

      XOXOXO Giant Hug!

      • Cathy Mayfield says:

        Dearest Julie, thank you. It feels nice having someone think I have an ounce of wisdom to share. 🙂

        The “passwords” theme has enveloped my writing life for over 20 years, but nothing published yet. I used them to write a column idea for the newspaper, devotionals and Bible studies, and a series of self-help style booklets for those dealing with depression/anxiety issues. Nothing published, though. They will be the basis for my blog(s), with a working title of “Legacies of Learning.” Kathy Ide, a special writer/editor/mentor from Montrose Christian Writers’ Conference, has given me good feedback and encouragement to pursue this theme. It holds my passion and is fun! I’m praying the blog will open doors to possible publications. I believe you would enjoy them. They range from 350-600 words, depending on their purpose.

        Be blessed in your writing times. Keep your relationship with your mom close. Cherish the times spent with her and with the rest of your family. They are your story!

        • Wonderful!! Yes, I know Kathy Ide! I’m so happy for you! You’ve received such good help.

          Okay, when do you plan for your blog to go live? It does sound like my kind of thing. 🙂

          Exquisite words about family. I hear you. Am taking it to heart.

          Can not wait to see what God’s bringing together in your heart/blog!

  6. Martha Franks says:

    First, I want to tell you how much I love the picture of your cabin with the lights and snow! Being such a gardener and so ready to get into the dirt and make beautiful, I haven’t thought much about the change. I do love “inclement weather” when I am safe inside looking out my windows, feeling guilty for enjoying it so much while others are suffering in it! I’m ready!!!

    • Hey Martha! I can just hear gardening in your tone. In my mind, I see green! I bet you’re amazing with plants. Do you do vegetables and/or flowers?

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting. Just makes my day to know people are actually reading my blog!

      XOXOX–and blessings on your garden this year.

  7. I think this is exactly how we Northerners feel about the end of our summer/fall. When you look about and see lawn furniture buried underneath the snow, because you just weren’t ready to believe the seasons were changing. You’ve written about this with just the perfect visuals, ice and daffodils- oh I feel you when I see this in my mind. Maybe you need some pretty strings of summer lights to hang on the porch to ready you for the season? Its such a beautiful porch- I truly envy your porch parties no matter what the color/style of lights you choose 🙂

    • Yes, yes, Vicky! Summer lights! Yes! I’d love those! I hadn’t thought of summer lights–even love how it sounds.

      I’d love to spend a winter in the cold country with you and experience it for myself. The snow you saw in my pic, is sometimes all we get for several years.

      XO

  8. The last days of summer are like that to me, quite melancholy. I think it’s from the years of the kids having to go back to school. I always loved summers with all of us at home.

    • Oh, yes, Elizabeth–those last few days of summer. And in GA, at least where I live, they go back to school so early now. At the beginning of August!

      So much love to you and your family!

  9. Julie, I think the thing I dread most about time change is … setting the clocks. Ugh. And this last week, the electricity has been going off and on through the night, so I keep having to reset the clocks.

    I love winter. But I haven’t been able to get out much. I’ve been writing much, and I’ve wanted to stay inside where it’s warm. I need to get out and start walking. 🙂

    • Shelli, wish we could walk and talk and walk and talk. And talk about our writing too!

      I don’t know what it is about changing the clocks–I sort of freeze, like I’m not sure I can do it. Soooo silly!!

      xoxo

  10. Nailed it, Jewels. Again. Great job. I tend to stiffen against the winds of change, even those God blows my way. But I’m getting better. If I surrender, as you would say, He eases me into the next chapter with tomorrow’s surprises, joys, and adventures I’d have missed if I remained in yesterday.

    • Such beautiful writing, Chuck. I know exactly what you mean–I do the same thing–“stiffen against the winds of change–even those God blows my way.” Such good words there. Bet they could encourage a bunch of people!

      Thanks for stopping by.

  11. Shelley Elaine says:

    Julie, spring is my absolute FAVORITE! My family has had to listen to me count down to the time change for weeks-LOL! But, I can relate to your feelings, because I always hate to see the Christmas season come to a close. Oh, and, my rain boots are EXACTLY like yours! Tractor Supply?!! BTW, I ordered the safety ring for Timmy but it was too big :(I was too impatient to take his n have it sized) so they are exchanging it for me -should be here shortly;) -great company- thanks again for the tip!

    • Hey Shelley! Can’t believe you ordered the ring! And so sorry it was too big. Did I tell you I had to find out Rick’s size by taking his old ring to Walmart? Hope the new one fits perfectly.

      And we have twinsie rain boots! I love mine–can’t remember where I got them, but we do have a Tractor Supply about 10 minutes away–don’t think they came from there.

      I loved reading your comments–that you anticipate changing the clocks. Okay, I’m going to change my thought process, right now! Next year, it’ll be different! Keep me accountable. 🙂

      xo

  12. marci says:

    Daylight Savings time. So glad you wrote about it. I confess, I don’t like DST. (maybe its the AZ girl in me?). I liked the picture of your house with the lights and that you still had them up and lit. — I confess, when we had the snow, I turned on my Christmas lights, multi colored ones! It just seemed like the thing to do – but Rick is right, the time has come to put them out of sight, so we can truly enjoy them again at the other end of the year. DST, reminder of the other changes, and that we are changing to Spring.. Thanks for giving me that to think about. Life is always so full of changes. The flowers that pop through the ground, as the first hint of spring, they are such an inspiration. I noticed the ones here have popped though, in spite of the cold and the snow and ice- there they were/ are! I keep getting the message – “Move forward”, and your writing, everything in your blog seems to be nudging me forward. God always seems to give me some message when I read your blog. Be like the daffodils.. Yes, I needed that message. Thank you.

    God Bless,

    • marci says:

      PS I am smiling so, and want to jump for joy! I am not alone. There are others like me. Still having Christmas lights up, still (the other Julie G) have a tree up. I confess, my 3 ft tree is still also in the corner and I have, when alone at night, turned on the lights, but now with spring, and as said above, time to pack it all away. I am so glad for your blog and all the comments.
      It gives me such strength.

      • Love it about the trees!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love that y’all are breaking the rules!!!!!

        I guess, maybe, in order to celebrate Easter, the tree must be put away though. 🙁 But I can sure see how it would bring you Joy.

    • Such sweet words, my friend. And I like your abbreviation, DST.

      Everyone agrees that my husband is right about the lights. But guess what? He still hasn’t taken them down…and I’m not reminding him. 🙂

  13. Julie Gilleand says:

    Well I have to tell ya, my Christmas tree is still up! It is typical of me to leave it up a long time. Sorta lazy about putting it away and sorta like to keep lighting it up at night. There is a comforting and cozy feel to it, that feels like being wrapped in a warm blanket — when life is cold. I also still play Christmas music, never tiring of it. However others in my household just think I’m nuts. My last response to being told to take down my tree was that when it started looking like Spring, I would. And I think due to this week’s weather, I may have run out of excuses. But yes I definitely have a hard time changing. And I do NOT like the time change AT all, but it happens no matter what, right? So, I roll with it, but will never like it. As I write this, I just got word that at work we are going to change offices, meaning I’m moving to a different office with a different roomie and several other coworkers are too, and this is the second move in 5 months! So it goes. It is meant to be a positive change and I HOPE it will be 🙂

    Thanks, Leaf Sister!

    Other Leafy Julie

    • Leafy Julie! I love it that your tree is still up. Did you see where Marci’s is too?

      Just makes me so happy. 🙂 🙂

      And really, there aren’t Christmas tree/light police who’ll make us take them down.

      Let me know how long you keep it up. 🙂 Can’t wait to hear!

  14. Lori Milner says:

    Dear Julie, some of us in Massachusetts have been ready to say goodbye to winter since about mid-January. We still have snow if you want some!

    • Hey Lori, when I read this blog post to my mother she said, “You’re going to hear from people up north who are sick of all the snow.”

      I guess mothers are always right. 🙂

      That dusting of snow you saw in my picture—-sometimes that’s all we get in the Atlanta area for several years. We get so excited when it happens! I’ve never seen a snow plow or needed chains on my tires. Can’t imagine living in a Winter Wonderland!

      • Lori Milner says:

        Hi Julie! There was supposed to be more to my post but only the first paragraph showed up. I wanted to say that I’ve loved yours and Marion’s Daily Giudeposts devotionals for years and am glad you both have blogs. I wrote Marion a few years ago and still have her lovely typewritten reply. Yes, moms are always right, although getting your kids to own that takes YEARS. LOL! I lived in AZ and NC for years and snow always excited us there. I’m a New England native so never had trouble driving in it. Take care and God bless!

        • Lori, and I was just so grateful for your first comment! And now there’s another. 🙂

          That’s so precious that you still have her reply. Sooo sweet!

          I can’t even imagine knowing how to drive in snow. BTW, I went to Boston recently and loved the city–maybe that’s sort of near where you lived.

          XOXO Thanks again for both comments! Means twice as much. 🙂

  15. Patricia Martin says:

    Hi Julie! I am so glad we no longer have twice a year time changes! The heat may fry us here in AZ, but our sanity holds much longer for the rest of the year.

    • Patricia Martin says:

      I meant to add that I am going to spend a lot of this season of life resting. How is your family doing with all the cold back there? I loved the pictures on your blog– Spring will be here soon and even old Groundhog Phil cannot stop that!((((:
      Love,
      Patricia

      • Resting?? Are you okay, Patricia?

        Most of us in GA totally freak out with the snow. Everything you hear is true. The grocery stores will run out of bread and milk. Schools close. Sometimes you can’t find firewood.

        But I enjoy it!

        Groundhog Phil–reminds me of that movie, Groundhog Day. Love that move!

    • Ohhh, really, Patricia??? I didn’t know that. So, no time change?

      Praying for your semester and GF eating. Hope all is well.

      XO

  16. Beautiful pictures. I love them. And I love Rick’s comment that “if we never took them down, pretty soon we’d never even notice them.” So very true! Love spring nudging aside winter. There is always a time for all seasons…and I love that too.
    Hugs!

    • Hugs right back to you my California friend.

      Beautiful words–always a time for ALL seasons.

      Love you.

  17. Patricia Martin says:

    Hi again, Julie!(; I am fine so far, but will be glad to finish economics and accounting this Spring!
    I am resting physically and mentally as much I can and appreciate reading your uplifting blog.(: I love your Spring wreath and send hugs.
    ((:
    Patricia

    • Wonderful, Patricia. So glad you’re learning the importance of resting!

      Economics and Accounting….I don’t even like typing those two words, but you know I’m praying. You’re going to do beautifully~~~~~~~~

      Thanks so much for your encouragement with my blog. Means So Much! It helps me know that the words inside my heart sometimes touch all ages. xoxo

  18. Julie…change is one of those things I am just not good with! I SO like my schedule and keeping to it. If I get up in the morning and something is not where it needs to be it throws me totally off whack. For example, even though I did a load of laundry last night and put it in the dryer before going to bed, when I go to get the shirt I want to wear and it’s not in the closet…but in the dryer, I get exasperated with myself for throwing this monkey wrench in my morning schedule. How silly is that? That’s why I dislike the holiday season so much! Yes, I like the holiday itself, but all the hoopla leading up to it? I can do without it thank you very much! Do we really need to start putting out Valentine Candy the day after Christmas? And the “Christmas season” gets longer every year. Last year I swear that they started showing Christmas commercials in August! Is that really necessary??? So, all that said, you know what I’m not having a problem with? The “season of life” that I am now in. That season leading up to retirement. If I’m having any problem at all it’s waiting for retirement to come! I’m looking forward to spending time with my husband and doing all the things we’ve talked about over the years: planting a raised garden in the side yard, setting up the big fish tank so the cats will have a TV to watch during the day, re-doing the kitchen counters, replacing all the odd & end hardware in the house that we inherited from my in-laws, etc. I’m not rushing things mind you, but I understand now what retirement is all about…and I can’t wait for that season to get here. A season of huge change that I won’t mind at all! 😉

    • Hey Lisa,

      August for Christmas commercials! Holy cow!

      I can FEEL your excitement about retirement coming through your comment. Just makes me so happy for you. And I love your list of fun things to do! Total Bliss~~~~~~

      Much love to you, and thanks for reading–and letting me know you’re reading!

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