Food for Thought 
by Leigh Currey Merrifield, Editor

Happy Spring, readers!  April Fool’s Day passed a few days ago, so this is NO JOKE; Spring has really arrived!   This is the season that brings such promise.  There is so much to look forward to this month.

While little ones are anxiously awaiting the Easter Bunny and perhaps an Easter egg hunt … and older students look forward to Spring Break … what about us older folks?  For some, it may be that Tax Day will soon be behind us for another year!  But that is just a dreaded chore we can cross off our list.  But what are we longing for?

I can only speak for myself, but the longer days have been such a welcome relief!  Perhaps it is a stretch to say “longer days”; the hours in the day don’t really increase at all.  I guess a better way to put it is that we have more daylight hours.  There is no doubt about it – what seems like winter’s perpetual darkness can certainly affect our personalities!  Even if it’s just an hour or two of extra daylight, it leaves some room for more daily productivity!  To be sure, it can be a real mood elevator.

At this point at least, it may be a little soon to expect the sunlight to have much warmth, but at least we know it is in the offing … and before you know it, many will probably be complaining about the heat!  However, it is not too early to start thinking about packing away the heavy coats, scarves and gloves.  YAY … BULK BEGONE!!!!

There have already been a few mornings when I’ve heard birds chirping as I get ready for work, and I notice them picking around in my yard.  That, too, is a very welcome sign.  A few of my perennials have begun to awaken from their long winter’s nap too, and I have already begun to think about what kinds of flowers to plant in my outdoor pots.

I am SO ready to open a few windows and allow the fresh air to wander in and replace the stagnant air that has been bottled up all winter long.  I’m even looking forward to washing my car inside and out!  Firing up the grill will offer a welcome aroma.  However, I have to admit that on a couple of halfway decent days, I have done some outdoor grilling – yes, WITH A COAT ON!  Guess I was rushing things just a little.

Now as soon as the weather shifting from chilly to warm to chilly again comes to an end, it will be time to devote to some serious patio/porch sitting and capture the fragrance after the lawn is cut the first few times!  It will also be nice to get reacquainted with our neighbors again and carry on some over-the-fence conversations!

Mom and I are particularly looking forward to a Spring visit from two of our favorite family members from Texas who will be joining us for 4-5 days!  It’s the best way she could possibly celebrate her upcoming –th birthday.  Their previous visits have been winter trips, so I’m anxious for them to see West Virginia “springing” to life for a change!  No doubt it will be a welcome relief for them since they’ve been experiencing 98-degree Texas weather since mid-March !

To me, one of THE most important things in life is family, and living far away from those you love can be tough sometimes.  We miss them all the time, but especially for special events and holidays. So this will be our “special Spring event”!  We will welcome them with open arms, do some catching up, laugh a lot, share LOTS of hugs, and hopefully create enough sweet memories to help lessen the pain of saying good-bye when they have to leave.  Having them here, even for just a few days, will be a special Spring gift!

This week’s dessert:  “Families, like branches on a tree, grow in different directions, yet our roots remain as one.”  ~ Author Unknown