Writer at Work

img_0888Spring has come to Northern Michigan, and we have begun to enjoy the longer days and mostly nicer weather. The sun is returning, and the light is wonderfully warming after the cold winter.

With the coming of the light, comes another of the great warm weather traditions: Projects.

I’m not sure how it is in other states, but here in Michigan, spring also means the beginning of road construction. Once cannot drive anywhere without running into the orange cones and guys in hard hats.

We do the same thing at home. Once the snow recedes the desire to dig in the dirt increases as does the need to make repairs and changes around the home.

My Writing Shed has been quite high up on the list of unfinished projects, and we are gaining ground. The walls are paneled and painted; they only await trim. The floor isn’t in yet, but that will come later this spring.

I’ve spent some beautiful days in and out of the shed, enjoying the warmth and light. I’ve found pleasure in hanging the decorations I’d been collecting all winter.

Sitting in this clean space with pictures and other decorations on the wall is stirring the creative juices. I can feel the excitement of holding a pen and putting it to paper.

Of course, I must find a balance with the rest of the projects that are in the planning stages. We’ve been brainstorming on how to transform our yard from just grass and trees to something more fun and functional. We have lots of space to fill, and there may be a rock garden in my future.

Spending this time in my writing shed and writing has been a balm to my soul. I have needed this space and look forward to more days spent in solitude.

Here is what’s been happening:

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Life is always a work in progress, and my building reflects that. I doubt I will ever truly finish it regardless of where the construction goes. Life grows and changes too much.

Friday Five: Happy Spring?

Have you ever had one of those weeks? You know what I mean. The one’s where you think Tuesday is Thursday and that happens three days in a row. Not to mention, my to-do list grows longer on each of those days and still undone.

Yeah, that was my week.

My intention for this week was so let everyone see what early spring looks like in Northern Michigan. I’d planned on photographing some of my favorite things about spring.

Well, things didn’t turn out that way.

Things looked like this when I went to get in my car:

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And this:

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By the afternoon, the rain that had fallen for nearly the entire day turned to snow making the drive home rough. The big fat snowflakes that we saw would have been welcomed in December, not March.

 

 

 

But this is springtime in Northern Michigan. Scenes such as these are quite common:img_0896img_0899

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We aren’t the only ones who have been “blessed” with this weather and we’ve been lucky so far. A friend who lives in Colorado reports that they have lost power during the storm.

One thing that spring in Michigan teaches you is patience. Wait a little bit and the weather will turn warm again.

The weather forecast says the temperature will be nearly 50 degrees in the next couple of days which will change the landscape again.

Something like this:

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Friday Five: Signs That Winter is Coming to a Close

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With February coming to a close, we can begin to see signs of spring. Although the signs are different in different areas, this part of the world has a few of its own. The following are the ones I’ve observed recently:

 

  1. Commuting is now done during daylight hours. No longer do I travel country roads in the dark.
  2. Skunks are seen and smelled. Mostly this is due to wandering on the road, but generally, this critter doesn’t appear until the end of winter.
  3. The sounds of songbirds. There is nothing like the sound of a bird singing and a balmy breeze in February to make a person impatient for spring.
  4. Fluctuation in temperatures. Although this winter has had its ups and downs, the highs are higher as February draws to a close.
  5. Each snow storm that appears on the horizon is determined to be the “last one” of this winter. Of course, this is Michigan and while there are rumors of snow in July (I’ve never seen it), having snow on Mother’s Day is not far outside the realm of possibilities.

Are there any I missed? For myself, I look eagerly at each black feathered bird trying to see the red spots on the wings. Redwing blackbirds are often the first avian’s to arrive in this area, even before the more traditional Robins.

What are your favorite signs of spring?