springtime is happy time!

the past few weeks here have felt like such a gift.  the weather is warming, the baby is walking, the trees are flowering, the days are growing longer and hope feels thick in the air.  everything is new.  we arrived in washington at the very end of october just in time to see the last colored leaves fall from the trees, so to see everything now bursting into glory around us is just spectacular!  all my life i had dreamed of seeing cherry and apple blossoms in real life.  when i was tiny, i listened to my grandpa tell the story over and over of this one day he saw my grandma 70 years or so ago... he had just returned from war and it was spring, at the peak of cherry blossom season in washington d.c. and my grandma walked down a big flight of steps wearing a white sweater with curls in her hair and she smiled right at him.  he said he saw her walk towards him beneath those cherry trees dropping their petals and he knew that she would forever be his "sweater girl" - and she would always roll her eyes and give him a little wink every time he told the story.  and ever since, i had dreamed of seeing the blossoms.  my grandparents have already gone to heaven and my grandpa never got the chance to meet my babies, but this last week as we have been preparing the garden and my little ones have been running barefoot blowing dandelions and dancing beneath the blossoming trees, i have felt him there.  i think that's the beauty of this country life.  slowing the busyness enough to find the beauty in the quiet.  hands deep in the earth, breathing in the beauty of change and allowing God to use nature to weave the stories of these days. there are a LOT of photographs here.  some of these are my favorites i have ever taken of my children.  i hope you love them too.  i have written a bit of what we have been doing next to the photos as i go.  first, we have a few new additions to our homestead... sheep!  the sweetest sheep!  the mama is candy cane and her two babies are little ninja and clover.  the kids spend so much time with them and are excited to be able join 4-h soon and be a part of the farm kid community.

1 2 3 4 6 7 8our chickens started laying!!! oh, the excitement of finding the first egg! 10 11.5 11 it's a dandelion dreamland!  12.5 12 we hung a porch swing beneath the walnut tree.13 14 15.5 16 17.6 17.7 17 18.5 18 19 outdoor school.  nature journaling the cherry blossoms!21 22 23 25 the greenhouse gardens are flourishing!  we have had some warmer days and it gets quite toasty in there.   26 28we started some seeds in the greenhouse for transplanting to the garden.  which is currently being created!  we are using the raised bed method with lots of compost and wood chips.  we will have about an acre all together for our full garden space (pumpkin patch included!). 29 30 31 3233.5 33 lilac in full bloom!  34 35 36 37.539 40.1 40.2 40 41.5 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53.5 53 55.5 55 56 57 58 dreams come to life!59 60 61 62 64