Last week was cold and wet. Rain, snow flurries, sleet. Temps in the 20’s at night. With all the gray, wet days it might have been easy to slip into the last of winter doldrums. But I have the cure for blue moods.
As the days progressed from gray to grayer, the buds on my forsythia kept opening wider as though their mission was to compensate for the lack of sunlight.
This week we’re experiencing clear skies and balmy spring weather. And the forsythia is in full glory. I could just crawl in and build a nest right here.
Even so, there’s nothing wrong with being a little blue now and then.
These are some interior shots from Historic Washington State Park taken on December 6, 2008, at the 22nd Annual Christmas and Candlelight.
The taverns are the most rustic interiors on the tour. The Morrison Tavern Inn and Kitchen is a reconstruction of the original building.
A bowl of dried hydrangea blossoms and greenery on the kitchen table.
A table and bench in the tavern room. Smilax, pine cones and a red ribbon add a festive touch.
A lovely Willow ware collection on display in the kitchen.
The Williams Tavern Restaurant serves a lunch and dinner buffet under chandeliers hung with cedar, pine cones and red ribbons.
Pine, cedar and magnolia leaves are used extensively in the holiday decor along with dried sumac and holly.
Each year on the first Saturday in December I travel to Historic Washington State Park for Christmas and Candlelight. Old Washington served as the Capitol of the Confederate Government of Arkansas for a brief period and is located between Nashville and Hope in southern Arkansas.
Every sidewalk, driveway and street is lined with luminaires. The Methodist Church was built in 1861.
A hand-made wreath adorns almost every window in every building, over three hundred wreathes in all.
The court house, built in 1874, serves as the visitor center.
The Crouch House (1856)
Smilax decorates every picket fence.
Choirs and instrumentalists perform in the churches and outside the Williams Tavern Restaurant.
At dusk, hordes of Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts light the tiny candles in every luminaire.
And the magic of Christmas illuminates the hearts of those fortunate enough to visit Historic Washington.
It is certainly a good thing that spring flowers are so hardy. We had two snowfalls in the first full week of March and this week brought torrential rains and flooding. Never mind Mother Nature. The flowers and shrubs are beautiful so let’s take a tour of my yard.
As the second snowfall melted away, bunches of purple crocus appeared.
The delicate blue of vinca decorates a shady spot underneath the trees in my backyard.
Tiny, dwarf tulips add spark to a bed of daffodils.
The forsythia begins to blossom decorating bare branches with drops of gold.
Spritely little windflowers (anemone) dot the ground around my bird feeders.
Pink hyacinth add a heady scent to the spring garden.
Blue hyacinth are surrounded by daffodils and naturalized grape hyacinth.
The small, rural Arkansas town that I live near is fortunate enough to have two city parks. The newer of the two parks has tennis courts, baseball and softball fields and the public pool. The older park is ‘downtown’. This park is a beautiful, quiet place to walk and relax.
The clock tower.
That mesmerizing fountain.
The bridge that separates the two duck ponds.
And lovers in the gazebo.
As I drove by the park, the play of sunlight on water captivated me like the songs of the Lorelei captured the souls of ancient mariners.
The gentle melody of falling water lured me closer. I wanted to crawl into the fountain and capture the water as it rained down on my face. I yearned to be completely surrounded by sparkles.
But the temperature was in the upper 40’s and freezing didn’t sound too attractive so I settled for sitting down and trying to capture the sparkles as they fell.
“Closer, closer,” sang the Lorelei and I decided laying down would be the best way to capture the falling sparkles.
“Closer, closer, closer,” sang the temptress.
I’m a middle-aged woman in a suit laying flat on her back in a public park mesmerized by sparkles of sunlight and water.
Lucky for me, I’m also a music teacher and this particular Lorelei was singing a bit off key which enabled me to break away from her seductive spell. Farewell, ye saucy wench.