Spring?

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It’s 48 degrees and pouring rain as I type, and the last few nights were in the low 30’s. Trees remain leafless. According to the calendar, tomorrow is the first day of spring. Here in the Pacific Northwest, this is pretty much what passes for it.

And yet, there are signs. The grass is growing–I just finished mowing up at the farm before this latest deluge hit. And Skyla spotted the first bright pink salmon berry flowers yesterday. Only a few, but they’re coming. With alders in “bloom,” we’ve been sneezing to beat the band, too.

So maybe it really is spring. It just doesn’t look like it, unless you look really closely. But we’re ready.

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It’s About Time

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As we prepare to “lose” the hour we gained last fall, I’ve been thinking more about how we use our time these days. It occurs to me that just 10 years ago, we didn’t have smart phones or facebook or unlimited mobile apps. Shortly before that, we didn’t even have texting, e-mail, websurfing or 372 channels of cable TV.

And I wonder, how many hours do we spend on these each day? And what have we given up in exchange, since the last time I checked, our days are still only 24 hours long. Recently, a veteran kindergarten teacher told me that over the last few years, kids in her classes have become noticeably clingier, needing ever more hugs and eye contact. I asked her what she attributed this to, and she pointed across the parking lot at all the parents staring into smart phones, tapping away at texts and e-mail. (Luckily, I’d just put my own phone in my pocket. Whew!)

Admittedly, a blog is a pretty funny place for an anti-tech rant, but there you have it. I’m not proposing we give up our electronics and crawl back into our caves. But as the weather warms and our daylight hours lengthen, my spring equinox resolution is to pay more attention to how I spend my time, and try to use it wisely, on the things that really matter.