Spring, my favorite time of the year! It’s a time to shed those heavy winter coats, kick off your shoes and enjoy the freedom of fresh air and sunshine!
Growing up on a farm, spring was a magical time. I remember waking to the chirps of the robins, meadow larks, blue jays, and once in a while the beautiful song of a canary.
Spring was the time to start planting on the farm. I would watch my dad and uncle disk the soil and plant the corn. There is nothing like the smell of fresh turned soil. There was such a sense of accomplishment watching the ground come to life after a long cold winter.
As for re-birth, momma cats would always hide their babies in the hay mow. I remember running to the barn with my girlfriend as we searched through the hay to find the kittens. We would laugh at the kittens as they spit and hissed, trying to act like tigers, when we picked them up. It wasn’t long until we had them purring and running to us when they saw us in the hay mow.
Also in the barn, the sows were having piglets. Baby pigs have to be one of the cutest animals in the world. It’s too bad they grow up to be big, ugly, and MEAN!! Once in a while, dad would bring a runt into the house for us to bottle feed. That little pig would play and follow you around just like a dog. Yep, pretty much like Wilber in the story of Charlotte’s Web. But, when that little piggy started eating regular feed, it went back into the barn with his brothers and sisters!
My favorite memory on the farm was walking out to the pasture in the evening with my dad. We’d go out and turn on the water for the water tank and just stand and watch the cows and calves. The cows would be eating the new sprigs of fresh grass, while the calves would be running and frolicking with each other in the evening air.
There were other times when I would saddle up my horse and take an evening ride around the farm. I remember one time, I rode in the pasture just as the cows were settling down for the night. To the east, the moon was sitting on the horizon like a huge, orange ball. In the distance there was the cry of a coyote and her pups. I remember feeling like that moment was something out of a movie. It was beautiful!!
Of course, Spring can get a little rough out here on the prairie! Mother nature likes to unexpectedly throw a storm or two on you. But even with the winds, hail, sudden downpours of heavy of rain, and yes, even a tornado, there is beauty in the fury. The shapes and colors of the clouds during the storms are magnificent. Watching the lightning as it streaks across the sky and the rumble of what seems like never-ending thunder is amazing. Unfortunately, I’ve seen the destruction of these storms many times. The flash flooding, the ruination of homes, trees and everything else in the path of tornadoes, the killing of animals from lightning, the beating the farmer’s crops take from the hail. A life time of work gone in a few minutes.
For me growing up on a farm was a spectacular. I will never forget those days.
I wish you all a very happy spring!