January 21, 2010

Testing ... testing ... Can this Butter Fly?

That's what I'm hoping to discover this evening ... when I list this shadow box in my Etsy holiday shop. 

Now, you may be wondering why it's going into a shop dedicated to celebrating holidays.  True, New Year's Eve is past. Valentine's Day is on the horizon, but that's about hearts and flowers and all things pink and red.  Saint Patrick's Day ... Easter ... they aren't exactly just around the corner, and this box has nary a green shamrock or hippity-hoppity bunny.  So, exactly what holiday are we thinking of here?  Well, I'll tell you ...

This morning, looking out my window at the blue sky above and the sunlight glittering on the snow below, I started feeling that maybe, just maybe, Spring is on its way. 

The season will come slowly here in northern Maine, where planting time usually begins on June 1 and growing season often ends in late August.  And between now and Memorial Day, we'll slog through "Mud Week."  Week indeed.  "Mud Week" can last from the beginning of March till the end of May, and as likely as not will bring us at least one blizzard or ice storm.  We probably won't see a single butterfly until early June.

In the twenty years Joe and I have lived here, I've learned what my native Mainer husband knew all along ~ Spring and Summer are all the sweeter for their brevity. 

When I lived in Texas, Indiana, New York, I never saw such an abundance of colorful butterfly banners on flagpoles; and tulips, daffodils, daisies and zinnias blossoming smack dab in the middle of vegetable gardens.  As soon as the many (and I do mean many) garden centers open to greet the new season Down East, it seems that every home, shop and barn bursts into bloom ~ showing off as many overflowing flower baskets as the eaves and decks and bridge rails will bear.

A whisky barrel, a wheelbarrow, an old bathtub, no vessel capable of holding potting soil escapes the metamorphosis; they all wake up one morning as planters, overflowing with pansies and petunias and marigolds.  And the geraniums!!!  The colors bring tears to my eyes and put a song in my heart.  Spring, Spring, Spring!!!

So yes, I'll list my butterfly shadow box in my holiday shop. 

In Maine, Spring is a holiday ~ all day long.


  1. What a wonderful posting, Mollie! Beautiful, as is your butterfly! Having lived in W. MA I remember Mud Season, which just around the corner..so I wish you and Joe an adundance of springlike good wishes and many more beautiful butterflies!

  2. Fantastic post, Mollie! I love the butterfly, and your photos of it are great! I'm not sure how you survive up there in Maine; here we often get the beginnings of spring by mid-February, and I am ALWAYS ready for it. By the way, I am re-reading Richard Russo's Empire Falls about life in a small Maine town... have you read it? He's one of my favorite authors... very tuned in to his characters.

  3. Thank you Ginny and Rebecca!

    And Rebecca, Russo is on my "to read" list as soon as I get my cataracts removed in March and can see to read again. What a happy day that will be!!!