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Wishing everyone a very Happy Easter.  This morning after church we opted for a nice quiet family Easter morning brunch here at home. The challah bread I made yesterday transformed into french toast with fresh berries, Locker bacon, homemade hash browns, eggs from the chickens and these lovely little fruit cups — because everyone needs some chocolate on Easter. Hope you are having the day with those you hold near and dear to your heart.

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In case you had any doubt that maybe I was stretching it a little when I said it was still cold here …… this is the forecast for the next four days. Where the heck is spring???

I admit it wouldn’t be the first time there was some chance of snow on the ground for Easter, but jeepers, the forecast didn’t look like this all winter long……

 

Tonight

Slight Chance Snow Chance for Measurable Precipitation 20%
Slight Chc
Snow
Lo 26 °F
Sunday

Slight Chance Rain/Snow Chance for Measurable Precipitation 20%
Slight Chc
Rain/Snow
Hi 45 °F
Sunday
Night

Slight Chance Snow Chance for Measurable Precipitation 20%
Slight Chc
Snow
Lo 28 °F
Monday

Chance Rain/Snow Chance for Measurable Precipitation 30%
Chance
Rain/Snow
Hi 45 °F
Monday
Night

Chance Rain/Snow Chance for Measurable Precipitation 40%
Chance
Rain/Snow
Lo 26 °F
Tuesday

Chance Rain/Snow Chance for Measurable Precipitation 40%
Chance
Rain/Snow
Hi 44 °F
Tuesday
Night

Chance Rain/Snow Chance for Measurable Precipitation 30%
Chance
Rain/Snow
Lo 28 °F
Wednesday

Chance Rain/Snow Chance for Measurable Precipitation 50%
Chance
Rain/Snow
Hi 42 °F
Wednesday
Night

Chance Rain/Snow Chance for Measurable Precipitation 30%
Chance
Rain/Snow
Lo 28 °F

 

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So, this year it is just the five of us for Easter. The boys have voted to not dye eggs (which does make me a little bit sad) instead we are headed off tonight to spend the evening with some good friends celebrating a birthday. Tomorrow, we thought about brunch out and then decided we’d brunch in instead. To that end, there is homemade challah bread rising by the woodstove as I type this (yes, folks it is still that cold here) and the fresh fruit is in the fridge.

For dessert there will be homemade cream puffs. That is of course if they survive the boys and their friends this afternoon……

 

 

So… while we won’t have eggs dyed or an egg hunt since there are no little ones here to share the Easter Bunny’s coming with us and I won’t get to make up baskets with my favorite basket designer, we will eat well.

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Did you see it? Did you? Remember when either you were little or your children were and you would play that little game to keep them from falling asleep – usually during a car ride when you were close to your destination and sleepy kids was not an option.

Evidently at 1:14 a.m. this morning, E.D.T. the sun was directly over the equator, marking the vernal equinox. Did you see it? Yeah, neither did I. Could be the darkness, hard to see the sun with all that pitch black out there. Or maybe, if you were lucky, you were sleeping. I was, but I’m not anymore.

Vernal Equinox marks the first day of spring. Did you know that Easter always falls on the First Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox? Nope, neither did I – learn something new everyday.

Another interesting fact for you — this is the earliest spring in over a 100 years. The last time spring was this early was 1896. In the Pacific and Mountain time zones, the first day was spring was really yesterday, since the vernal equinox took place before midnight for them. See, you missed it.

In any event, enjoy the spring. Here in Vermont we are supposed to have a beautiful day with temperatures hitting the 70s — maybe, just maybe it will help dry out the mud.

Welcome to Spring — or as we call it here on the dirt roads — Mud Season.

 

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Sometimes it takes sadness to remind you of how lucky you are and how fortunate you are to have both family and friends around you. I was standing Wednesday night in my aunt’s hospital room, looking around at her and her belongings and thinking how much we importance we place on the things around us, whether they be pieces of jewelry or clothing or even a favorite photo or novel. On her table lay her glasses and a half-read paperback novel, one she would not finish. She was still wearing her bracelets, her ring and her necklace. These items mean little to someone who is lying in a hospital bed, dying of cancer, however we place such importance on these  “things” and so many other inconsequential “things” during our lives, when we are healthy and death is someone else’s tragedy.

The sense of accomplishment I felt on Wednesday morning was quickly replaced by sadness late Wednesday afternoon, as I was driving down to New Jersey after speaking to my mom and learning the her sister, my aunt, was indeed dying and this was my race against fate to attempt to say goodbye. Caught between the conflicting duties of child and mother the remainder of the week was a whirlwind to say the least. I found myself driving back on Thursday afternoon to be here for a tooth extraction appointment for my youngest son (which I wound up missing and Tom covered) and my oldest son’s birthday. News came in the early morning hours on Saturday that my aunt had passed away. I think that the hardest part of the events over the last few days was leaving to come home. I left the hospital and my aunt knowing that I would never see her again despite my attempt at a cheery goodbye to her. I also left with the smacking realization that it was highly likely that one day that same type of encounter could be the last exchange that I would have with my mother. I would say goodbye and realize that perhaps it might be for the last time, not for a desire to be there, but trying to resolve the conflicting roles of mother and daughter.

Easter was a bittersweet holiday, tinged with the reminder that life really is special and our relationships with those special in our lives should be cherished.

Illumination of the Earth by the Sun on the da...
Image via Wikipedia

Today marks the day that day and night are roughly equal in length. It is the vernal equinox, where the sun was directly over the equator. The result is that the length of time that we are exposed to daylight and then night are equal, or roughly equal, in length. The actual equinox, where the sun is directly over the equator will occur at 1:32 p.m. here in the Eastern Daylight zone.

There is a rumor that during the vernal equinox you can stand an egg on end, however, that has pretty much been disproven, since with time and patience, one can stand an egg on end at any time during the year, not just during the equinox. There is evidently no special gravity present during this time that would account for an egg’s ability to stand on end … or dance… or do anything special.

Vernal equinox marks the first day of spring. A rebirth of the earth, a time that Mother Nature shakes off winter like a bear coming out of hibernation and shrugging off the sleepiness of winter.

There are many different celebrations and many of the holidays that we know are set around the equinox. Easter falls on the first Sunday after the first full moon following the vernal equinox.

World Storytelling Day, preserving the art of oral storytelling is celebrated on the day of the vernal equinox or March 20th this year. It is celebrated all over the world on this day and originated in Sweden in 1991. It is a day to tell stories and promote the art of storytelling, one of the most ancient of all art forms. Go ahead, share some stories today – Happy Spring! (By the way, we STILL have snow here.)

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