Winter here at The Oasis at Four Queen Palms has been chilly longer than I remember. Usually, the cold weather lasts about a month – a period of time where jeans and a warm jacket or heavy sweater are part of the fashion. Not so this year, yet I did manage to wear shorts yesterday. So, it might finally be warming up.
We were working in our yard yesterday with the usual late winter clean up. The sun was shining brightly, and in the trees, birds were singing happily. It was quiet otherwise, except for Turban, a neighbor living nearby with The Wild One. She was yakking on her phone, but not wearing her trademark turban. Earlier that morning, The Wild One went somewhere on his motorcycle – vroom! vroom! vroom! They are a story for another essay. Maybe.
I noticed that some of our more tender plants died from the heavy frosts in December. I cut back many of them to about two or three inches because I could see they are still viable. Over the next few days, I will be researching replacement plants and making a list for a trip to the nursery. I have some ideas, but I need to research to make sure my ideas will work in the specific bare spots. The azaleas have buds, and one already popped open her red blooms.
The evenings now are warmer, but still cool. A snuggle next to the burning fireplace is a warm experience – add a cup of hot tea and a good old book, and there’s a night to enjoy!
Saint Valentine’s Day is only a few weeks away. I am planning something, but I am not sure of the “what” yet, except that it will be tailored to us. Oh, that reminds me: it’s time to address and send out a few Valentines to those I and/or we care about. I usually add a short note to update the recipients on what we’ve been up to since the Holidays. It’s a nice gesture to keep in touch with people and it goes both ways with the more caring and interested people.
I remember when I was in grade school, one of the art projects we did was to cover a shoe box with festive – and hopefully Valentine-y themed – wrapping paper. Mom or Dad would cut a small slit in the top, and these decorative shoe boxes were ready for the Valentine’s Day card exchange in the classroom. It was so much fun to see who gave us a card, and they were so much prettier than today’s cards. They usually were a single piece, covered in silver glitter, and with a fun sentiment so appropriate for youngsters. They came in a box of twenty or so, complete with white envelopes.
Though the evenings might be cool here at The Oasis at Four Queen Palms, warm hearts still prevail.
Lady Susan Marie Molloy
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