I didn’t realize that it had been so long since I’ve posted. The last few weeks have kind of opened up and swallowed me whole, but things are slowly beginning to return to normal around here. Or at least as normal as they ever are, which tends to consist of periods of reasonable calm punctuated by bursts of insane overwhelm.

Fortunately, the insanity is calming down, and I’m beginning to actually have room to think again. And as I look up from work and planning, I’m suddenly realizing that spring has come in my absence.

Or, rather, that spring has exploded into being. A week ago we had temperatures in the 40’s, and everything was damp, icy cold. Today, it was supposed to hit 70, and it was light all evening.

This past weekend, Branden and I took a much needed break and went outside. We visited the Chicago Botanic Gardens, looking for signs of spring.

First, though, I was struck by the beauty of the remnants of fall.

But then, pushing up amidst the faded glory of last years’ show, the new guard is bursting forth.

We walked through most of the gardens, finding signs of spring here and there, little isolated pockets of new life poking out.

And then, we walked around a bend in the path, and stumbled across this jubilant display.

If that doesn’t capture springtime and the joy of reawakening, then I’m not sure what does.