Hello, Spring!

Spring officially arrived on March 20th … but here in southeastern Virginia and many other parts of the U.S.A., it certainly hasn’t felt like it!


I don’t really have a favorite season. I like all four, for different reasons:

Winter

winter-landscape-tofuhaus-com-791851

The picture above says it all. I love snow and the way it touches the landscape. I love the cold breeze and when I can see my breath. I like being bundled up in warm fleece and scarves … when the calendar says it’s supposed to be winter, anyway. See below.

However, this winter has been a major exception. I don’t like all the wishy-washy, Mother Nature can’t make up her freaking mind, mood swinging changes in temperatures. Some people (like my mom) say that they love living here in SE VA because we get all four seasons. Yeah, right. We get a few minutes of spring and fall every year (maybe), then the rest of the year is all summer and winter.

“You can’t get too much winter in the winter.” ~Robert Frost


Spring

river of flowers

If I had to pick a favorite season, I’d choose spring. I love seeing the new life sprouting from the ground and the trees. One of the best things about living in SE VA is that there are so many trees and parks and places with nature. I love that I can hear birds singing almost every morning.

Don’t believe me? Check out the links below (but I highly recommend visiting in person!)

Norfolk Botanical Garden – Norfolk

Portsmouth City Park – Portsmouth

Oak Grove Lake Park – Chesapeake

Sandy Bottom Nature Park – Hampton

Noland Trail and Mariners’ Museum Park – Newport News

False Cape State Park – Virginia Beach

First Landing State Park – Virginia Beach

Chippokes Plantation State Park – Surry

And there’s beaches and rivers, too.

Also, this spring I signed up with the Hidenwood Presbyterian Church co-ed softball team. I’m so excited to get started – We’ve been practicing for a week already, and our first game is a week away from today. Play ball!

“Spring is nature’s way of saying, ‘Let’s party!'” ~Robin Williams


Summer

summer

Summer is a love-hate season for me. Summer to me means freedom – Freedom from school, freedom to travel, freedom from clothing (to an extent). However, in SE VA, it just gets terribly hot and humid. And quickly. And for a long time. It depends on the year, but usually it starts to get hot and miserable sometime in May and lasts clear to the end of September. Blech!

However, with summer comes some of my best memories. My birthday is in the beginning of August.

The annual church mission trip to North Carolina happens every July – I started going in high school and this summer will be my eighth trip. Carolina Cross Connection is a great group!

Several years ago, my friend Liz’s parents bought a beach house in Corolla. Until then, I had never traveled to the OBX, outside of trips to Kitty Hawk and a family friend’s beach house in Southern Shores. The Easterbrooks’ sunny yellow house holds amazing memories for me. Talk about freedom!

Even better, summer was the season that Al and I met. We watched “Inglorious Bastards” with his brother Nick the night before I left Chesapeake for my senior year at Longwood, and I knew that night that I wanted both of them to be in my life somehow until the end. The first two weeks of school were filled with texts, Facebook, and Skype. I brought Nick’s girlfriend at the time (a new Longwood freshman) home for Labor Day weekend, and Al and I decided that we’d go out to dinner at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront on September 4th … Well, the rest is history.

“Tears of joy are like the summer rain drops pierced by sunbeams.” ~Hosea Ballou


Fall

fall leaves

Like winter, the picture above says it all. The fall represents gorgeous colors as the trees prepare for winter. I have fond memories of helping rake the leaves in my parents’ backyard and then jumping in them for hours with the neighborhood kids. My dad and Mr. Porter from across the street usually put a big blue tarp down before we started, and then they’d drag us around the yard with the leaves. So much fun.

One of my fondest memories of fall was a youth group camping trip to Sherando Lake when I was a sophomore in high school. It was stunning scenery, much like the picture above. I experienced my first canoe flip in the lake (not the best moment; the senior boys flipped us! Jerks!) That was also the trip when I discovered my first high-school crush … Sigh.

Fall also means apples and bonfires. I have never gone apple-picking, but that’s on my to-do list. Plus, I want to make an apple pie from scratch one day!

“By all these lovely tokens September days are here, With summer’s best of weather And autumn’s best of cheer.”  ~Helen Hunt Jackson


So, there you go. My thoughts on the four seasons.

Needless to say, after the long, miserable winter I’ve experienced for the last several months, I’m stoked for days of sunshine and those days that I can put my windows down and feel the breeze when I drive. Bring it on!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

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