This particular day of spring's beginning is the divine Miss C's birthday. She is three and oh so fabulous, oh so hilarious. Amazing that between Husbando and I, we have managed to keep this tiny creature alive, that she's articulate and thriving, funny and kind. The next year is going to be massive for her, she's off to pre-school and perhaps more importantly, about to become a big sister. After her party today, she was a little miffed that no-one had brought her Pooh Bear a present, as it is his birthday too... who can blame them, it hadn't occurred to me either! But I think it's a telling aspect of her personality, she didn't let it get in the way of her opening her own presents and she didn't bring it up until we were getting ready to have a much needed nap. I like to think this reveals her good manners. When I suggested she'd just have to share her gifts with Pooh Bear, she took it in her stride and he wore her new tiara out for dinner tonight. So even if he is inanimate, she knows how to share and I'm taking this as proof Husbando and I are doing something right.
In the weeks before I gave birth to Miss C, our Magnolia had come into flower and much like myself, the Cherry Blossom was ripening. Up on Armstrong St, the neighbourhood's best Crab Apple, (malus floribunda, I can, in fact remember some things) was a confection of pink and white, the tartness of new green leaves slowly upstaging the sweet. It's one of my favourite things, the dominant, showy blossom giving way to the fresh leaves. Reminds me of a very sickly lolly, the toffee apple and I don't mean a real apple dipped in toffee!*** Part of the bittersweet beauty of life can be marked by memories of what plants are in bloom. The spring of my childhood was always synonymous with the massed Azaleas that spelt out Lane Cove on Epping Rd, until one of my Mum's oldest friends told me she couldn't see them without remembering when her father died. Not many remain now because of the Gore Hill freeway and the bus interchange. And the Lane Cove tunnel means that unless, you're driving to Lane Cove specifically, you'd not have reason to pass and recall the fact that once upon a time, during a spring time traffic jam, that particular part of the world was that little more lovely and that someone very much loved was lost but not forgotten.
**Not that I in any way advocate solariums or unsafe tanning practise. However, I have become a little more aware of Vitamin D of late, in terms of the important role it plays in helping the body process calcium. No matter how sunny and inviting the day might seem, living where I do, going out with bare skin exposed for 10 minutes in 10 degree C temperatures is going to feel like lunacy! Confession number two, I guess, I do fantasise about getting tan.
***Which, for the record, I've always found rather overrated. Mostly, I guess you usually find them at fetes or fruit and veg shops and the apples used always seem to be horrid and floury. Makes me wonder if a little tart bonanza or sundowner might shift the balance...note to self, get Mum to teach me the art of toffee making.