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A kiss of gentle warmth

" tilted her icy northern face imperceptibly closer to the great shining star she circled...felt a kiss of gentle warmth and slowly awakened from the sleep of a deeper and colder winter. Spring stirred reluctantly at first, then with the urgency of a season whose time was short, threw off the frozen cover in an exuberant rush that watered and quickened the soil." (from The Mammoth Hunters, by Jean M. Auel)

Who doesn't yearn for spring as the snows are finally receding and the early flowers pushing out of the ground? It's become a trite expression, but it's the only one I want to make right now. I am re-reading the first five Earth's Children series books, in anticipation of the new release in two weeks. The books are heavily punctuated with seasons, or preparing for seasons, something that you'd think was behind us now that we have homes with indoor heating and cooling, roads cut through difficult terrain and plows to care for them, grocery stores with in and out of season foods, freezers, you name it. But we still define our lives by the seasons, something that is evident in articles, journal entries, and social network posts everywhere. Right now, spring, spring, spring, it's all anyone can talk about.

Watching a child live the seasons is a completely different story, though. It's not that Calvin doesn't understand seasons, but when you live for the now, the season really matters little. Warm and sunny? Let's go bird watching and ride our bikes. Rain? Let's find puddles, or read books in bed. Snow? Let's sled, or stay in and play games. It doesn't matter, it's all appealing. I'm trying to learn from his example, but right now all I can think of doing is soaking up as much sun and warmth as I can because I'm sure it will snow again. If not next week, then the week after, and as much as I love snow in December and January, it's green grass and blooming flowers that I'm longing for right now, as trite as that sounds.

We woke to a shining sun and warmth in the air, so we did our chores early, made quick work of our Wednesday store trip, then broke into the spring air flooding the neighborhood. We walked to the pond to look for our muskrat (too early) and we explored the castle tree (it really looks like a castle turret from up the path). We found moss, talked to bugs, abused the leftover snow in our front yard, and the sidewalk chalk made a comeback (that's an elephant eating spiny melons off a palm tree in the desert). I ran outside, actually outside, into town and back, then we grilled dinner, and when Calvin went to bed I could still see the houses across the street in the waning light of day.

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