Dandelion thoughts

blogIMG_7831 (2)They are everywhere.

Dotting the expanse of our 2.25 acre yard with their sunny dispositions, there is a plethora of them. But they don’t stay long. 

For a few days their perky little blooms speckle our lawn breaking up the monotonous spread of grass green, but then they transform into wisps of white fluff seeds which the breezy wind lifts up into the air carrying them far and wide.

Yep, I’m writing about dandelions. If you live in the suburbs and desire a picture perfect plush lawn with no weeds, you eradicate them as best you can.  But when you live in the country like I do, these little bursts of sunshine yellow crop up everywhere.

And you know what? I like them. It actually makes my heart happy to sit on my front porch swing and view our bumper crop of dandelions (and we do have a bumper crop this year!). I think they are just…well…dandy.

Dandelions remind me of childhood. 

Of picking them and fashioning bouquets to take to my mother.

Of making dandelion chains to wear as necklaces, bracelets, or crowns.

Of plucking the white puffy seed balls left behind after they bloom and blowing gently on them while making wishes.

Of lying in the cool grassy cushion of the earth and watching those wisps float and flit against the blue sky of warm weather. 

So what some folks perceive as a weed, I think of as a sweet little reminder of days gone by and nostalgic thoughts. 

I recently read a quote that said “When you look at a field of dandelions, you can either see a hundred weeds or a thousand wishes.” (unknown source)

How true. It’s all in how we look at things, isn’t it? Do we only see what we consider to be annoying or negative or can we look beyond and see something pleasant and positive?

So dandelion thoughts can apply to life. When plans go awry, when troubles and trials come my way, those aspects of life can wear me down. Make me feel as useless as weeds appear to be. But doesn’t everything have a purpose? Even those trials we face in life?

Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have never been discovered.”

So if a weed like a dandelion has an undiscovered  ‘virtue,’ then surely there exists an equally unrealized purpose for those hard times we encounter in life.

Difficult circumstances cause me to grow in my faith and actually compel me to become a stronger person. If life was simple and easy and always turning out exactly the way I wanted, from where would I gather any strength? I’d be as delicate as those dandelion seeds floating in the wind, tossed here and there without any direction.

So I will glance out my window or perch on my porch swing and give thanks to the Lord, Creator of all things, for dandelions and also for dandelion thoughts. And just maybe I’ll grow like a weed. 

“Be a weed! A weed is a plant that has mastered every survival skill except for learning how to grow in rows.” ~ Doug Larson

©2016 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

 

Here today, gone tomorrow

blogDSCN8943Just a few days ago, they dotted my green expanse of yard with cheery spots of bright yellow.  And now each and every one of them is gone.

They were the dandelions.  The sunny little bloom that most people think of as weeds.  When I see them though, they remind me of childhood.  Of warm, spring-like days when the sun shined brightly as I hopped off the school bus and walked through our yard to my home.

I would stop here and there and gather up a handful of blooming dandelions.  Their juicy stems left a sticky sap on my fingers, but I didn’t mind.  As I presented my little bouquet gift of dandelions to my mother, she never once said, “Why are you picking these weeds to bring to me?”  Instead she would ask, “Aren’t they pretty?” and put them in a jar of water on the kitchen table.

Today people use weed killer spread over the lawn in an attempt to eradicate these bursts of color in their yard.  But I don’t.  Because yellow, perky dandelions remind me of spring and sunshine and childhood memories and even my own children.  And they make me smile and fill my heart with happy thoughts.

But time marches on and so the dandelions come to the end of their blooming cycle.  Where once were lemony colored petals on the stem, only wisps of seeds remain.  When I was a child, I picked the stems after the blooms turned to white balls of fluff, closed my eyes, made a wish, inhaled a deep breath,  and blew with all my might to send the dandelion seeds and my wishes sailing into the air.

A spring gust of wind would lift the feathery seeds up and carry them along as they floated and sailed in the breeze.  Fluttering.  Gliding.  Drifting.

Today in my book called Opportunity, I’m reminded that life is much like the dandelion.  Here today, gone tomorrow.

Bursting forth with vim and vigor, and then fluttering along in the air of life. Floating.  Sometimes soaring, but eventually brought down to earth until we wither and are no more.

But the story doesn’t end there.  The dandelion seeds produce more happy yellow blooms next spring.  For us humans, our legacy lives on in our children and their children.  Just like dandelions.

In reflection of that, I’m savoring my thoughts and memories today, holding tight to these joyous moments of life as we prepare to marry off our three offspring.   Just yesterday it seems my home was noisy and full of rambunctious children.  Now it is quiet and tranquil.

Just yesterday it seems my middle child, the one full of spark and livelihood, was a youngster.  And now she is a grown up young lady who will be dressed in white lace and escorted down the church aisle by her father to be given in marriage in just one short month.

She’ll fly off with her husband …. her husband…my daughter is old enough to have a husband!   There will be new adventures for her, a new home, a different state in which to live, even a new job.   She looks forward to this exciting next chapter of her life with such joy.  I saw it glowing in her face at her bridal shower this past weekend as she opened her  gifts and talked about the wedding.

Just like the dandelions I once held in my hands, I also once held my precious children.  And now the day draws near when I must release them completely.  As the wind carries the wispy remains of dandelions to and fro in this spring season, my children also will soar into their futures, to their upcoming marriages, to their new lives in this current season of life.  I will watch and rejoice as they float and glide along and I will remember dandelions.

Copyright ©2012 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com