Of all the sweet customs of days gone by, the charming celebration of May Day is one I would love to see make a return.
My mother-in-law tells of when she was a child, and how her family would gather bouquets of wildflowers, then arrange them in baskets. Early on the morning of May 1st, they would sneak, ever so quietly, to a neighbor's door, hang a basket on the doorknob, knock and quickly run away to the next home. They loved seeing the puzzled looks on faces as neighbors wondered who had left the surprises.
For us, this old-fashioned custom continues. After breakfast, you'll find us secretly delivering baskets, then making a mad dash to hide. If we are caught, custom dicates we must scamper back for a thank you (and a kiss from Grandma!) And yes...while we're out, the May fairy always leaves a basket on our front door.
A simple pleasure...and while old-fashioned indeed, even today's modern families can create this sweet memory for their children, friends & neighbors. Why not begin celebrating May Day
in your home?
I was recently asked about the fairy garden we created over spring break, so I thought I'd share a few photos.
We added tiny chairs and a watering can that were just the right size, and the kids arranged pieces of broken china for a walkway. The broken dishes continue to be a mystery...each year when we till our garden we find them, along with bits of colored glass.
Sweet Girl and I have always kept the pieces in a pantry jar because they are so pretty to look at.
We tucked in a pint-size wheelbarrow, bee skep, and a few
When we were done, we set the garden under a greenhouse made from old windows (so the fairies would be sure to stay dry.) Notice the tire swing?
It makes me smile to see this every morning, and the kids love to check each day to see if the fairies have moved anything during the night!
1...dust off an old metal tub sitting in the barn
2...hook up a fountain pump to a length of plastic tubing
3...add a vintage rainbarrel downspout and water
Put them all together and you have one happy girl!
And while old-fashioned and distressed isn't everyone's style,
I just love this fountain. There's something about taking a vintage item and giving it new life that appeals to me. I can hardly wait for the flowers around it to grow tall and to enjoy listening to the soothing sounds of cool water in the heat of summer.
April has proven to be dazzling this year...bright yellow daffodils, cherry red tulips, and fragrant hyacinths are tucked into a vase on the kitchen windowsill. Among the springtime flowers are yellow dandelions...picked by little hands and presented with love. While flowers to the young at heart, they are weeds to others. As a mother, these flowers will always be accepted and loved as gifts from the heart.
The farmers around us are tilling their fields and checking fences, while gardeners are raking flowerbeds and hoeing vegetable patches. My husband built cold frames last year and now they're filled with green shoots of lettuce, onions, carrots, and radishes. The kids spend their evenings laughing as they sway back and forth on tire swings, taking a quick break now and then to chase kittens across the yard.
Spring is a fine time for barn sales...I can hardly wait to visit the first one this weekend! It's always fun to see what some consider "junk" and then to be inspired by the clever way it's turned it into something amazing by someone else. I'm hoping to come home with lots of ideas...and maybe a trinket or two.
Even an early-morning April shower can't dampen our enthusiasm...our hearts are ready for this new season
as she races across the countryside!
April...this month is full of country pleasures. Birds are chattering, our magnolia tree is full of pink blossoms, and the sky is a cloudless sapphire blue. There's something wonderful about the scent of freshly mown grass...my husband loves it. In fact, the grass has been growing so quickly that he's mowed it twice already! We've packed away the heavy flannel sheets in favor of crisp cotton ones...ahhh, how wonderful they were to sink into last night.
Spring break has just ended for the kids, and while they were off, we visited a favorite historical site.
I could easily live in this log cabin...
and would love to have taught school here.
We giggled our way through an egg hunt at Grammy's...
and locked up each other in the town "jail."
We went on a picnic, created a fairy garden, and visited a science museum. But of all the memories we made this Easter,
I'm guessing one in particular will rank among the top.
Warning: If an egg-coloring kit says it's spillproof, don't count on it. The memory of blue dye running all over the kitchen counter, down the cupboards, and onto the floor is sure to stay with us.
Adorable bunnies, coloring eggs, a new Sunday dress, chocolate-filled baskets and a visit to Grandma's house...they're all a part of our Easter celebration. However, admid the fun and surprises,
we take time to remember this is a season of hope and renewal. Wishing you a happy Easter.
the laughter of children
cross-country train rides
barn sales & auctions
John Deere 4020's
living in the Heartland
simple country pleasures
the comforts of home