Tuesday, February 14, 2012
I remember the day I first realized I was "different" from other girls in my peer group. I was probably seven or eight years old; and it was a all-girls Sunday School class.
The teacher asked us all what our favorite flower was. Each girl in the room said "roses" but when she came to me I said "daffodils". The teacher was surprised, and some of the girls in the room made sideways glances at me.
I also remember one time, at about the same age, in late spring or early summer, and I was playing in my room with my dolls. I hear the lawn mower in the front yard and ran to the window in time to see my Dad mow off the thick daffodil border my mom has there. Of course the daffodils were done blooming by this point, and the leaves were turning brown and dying away. I ran, crying, to my Mom - who explained to me that they needed to go ahead and be mowed off; and they would come again next spring. I had been thinking that mowing off the leaves killed them; and how could Dad do that?!
To this day, some of my favorite flowers are Daffodils - the first blooms of springtime. The first bit of growth in the frozen brown landscape. The very first sign of Spring.
The daffodils came early - almost 3 weeks early - this year. We've had an unusually mild and warm winter, with very few days getting to the freezing mark or anywhere near it. The daffodils started poking up in the flower beds and yard in mid January.
I am lucky - because our farm has a very old home site, with the house burned up and the remains buried in a hole in the ground - but all the old flower plantings still bloom - mostly iris and three or four different varieties of daffodils. I pick them by the bucket in the springtime.
Some people call them buttercups - but to me, buttercups are the weedy little yellow flowers that grow in the fields in the summer, that my Grandma used to pick and then hold under my chin - "Do you love butter?" she'd tease. She said if my chin reflected yellow when she held the flower there, I "loved butter". Taking after her, one day I held a buttercup under her dog's - and Irish Setter's - chin to see if she liked butter. She didn't. :)
I firmly believed everything my Grandmother told me; including when she gave me a conch sea shell and taught me to hold it to my ear - "to hear the ocean". She went to her beach home in Florida for the winter, and when I missed her, I listened to the shell and thought of Grandma on the beach, collecting the shells, driftwood, and sea glass she brought back every spring when she returned to North Carolina.
I didn't mean to get all sentimental about my Grandmother in this post - really I didn't.
I just wanted to say I love Daffodils..... and can't wait for Spring!
Oh yeah - Happy Valentine's Day!
(All the photos in this post are mine.)