The Annual Leap of Faith and…

Do you ever think that all that believing in Christmas is somehow a clever bit of short circuitry to believing that Spring will come again?

Every year, without fail, I have a lapse of faith. While Husband turns his attention to seed catalogues, I burrow under a pile of yarn, hooking stitches as though my life depended on them and muttering despondently, bah, that garden is too much work.

And every year, without fail, we make that sharp turn in our circumnavigation of the sun and, lo, here I am with my nose pressed against the kitchen window wondering when the rain might ease off so that I can go survey my plot of earth.IMG_1059

It was a funny old Christmas. Two people died. They weren’t people I was close to, or even knew well, no need for condolences, but the circumstances of both, young people leaving tiny children behind, were shocking, really shocking, and desperately, awfully sad. A woman said to me that it put all the Christmas ‘stress’ into perspective and I nodded but really I thought, no, it doesn’t. It makes no sense at all. None.


I’m a bore, a steady eddy. I put what must get done ahead of what could be fun. Teenage Son accuses me of constantly procrastinating with the ‘just one more job I have to do.’

I like to believe I am reliable. I work towards security. I don’t buy lottery cards. I’m not interested in gambling.IMG_1022

And yet, here I am stuck, with you and everyone else too, in this great big game of chance.IMG_1018

It was Ophelia who broke those poppy stems, all tipped over at what must have been a weak spot in their stems. I left them there because I admire their tenacity and because, even in decay, they are undeniably beautiful.IMG_1021

There’s very little left now of last year’s fruit. Only a few grim hangers-on, like these rose-hips, have withstood the persistent wet of an Irish winter.IMG_1034

Still and all, it has been another remarkably mild winter and there is probably more life in the garden than, by rights, there should be.

The perennial wallflowers are living up to their name, and then some.IMG_1000 (2)

And surely, there can be nothing in the world more reliable than daffodils.IMG_1007

And rhubarb too, seems like a safe bet.IMG_1027

And there are tiny buds on the Acers…IMG_0998

and bigger buds on the lilac…IMG_1004

and sticky, rosy buds on the Ribes.IMG_1012

And even where there is no sign of Spring, there are signs of life.IMG_1028

And there is reassurance in knowing, knowing because I can see it and knowing because I can rub my thumb against the strength of it, that there will be a rose here…IMG_1043

and a fig here…IMG_1038

and a bunch of blueberries here.IMG_1032

And I think I might say yes next time Teenage Son offers to teach me how to play the guitar. And I think I might venture out of my safety zone. And I might fail. And I think I might risk it.

And, and, and…IMG_1042

and it goes on.IMG_1040

Happy New Year.

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

11 thoughts on “The Annual Leap of Faith and…

  1. Do try the guitar lessons – it has to be the coolest thing to be able to make music any time or place. I am back to my French home in a week. England’s dreary grey skies have got me down a little, plus my own bad news. I think France too will have sprung into Spring too and that means eight months of sunshine to look forward too. I have a list of “to-do’s” as long as my arm, but in my case no guitars, but maybe re-learning how to thread a sewing machine. Advice on tension – both sewing and mentally always welcome.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It must be much milder up in the Creuse …. Spring is almost nonexistent in Cantal and when it does try hard it is often beaten back by snow well into April and sometimes even May (like last year). Here it mild at the moment but I never trust February … not never ever! Glad you are on your way back to France soon … I am sure you are missed 🙂


  2. What a beautiful post, Lynda. I especially love the photo of the poppy, fascinatingly whisk-like in its structure. We’ve been snowed under since Christmas, although rain (expected later today) is going to mar the beauty of our winter wonderland and leave us with something brown and slushy. (No daffodils for us for months yet, as we’ll dip below freezing again in a few days.)
    Your son’s estimation of you made me smile (of course it would — I’m the same, a responsible and reliable workhorse). I hope you do take him up on those guitar lessons. There’s something so heart-string pulling about the realization that your children have things to teach you …


  3. I’m not going to offer condolences but I am going to offer up my deep sadness that two young parents of tiny children have passed away. It just feels so wrong when that happens. I mean. Death is hard at any time (even the ‘welcome relief’ I can vouch is not actually that) but when it is a young person set to nurture a child that will now have a gaping gash in their parenting, that is tragic and I can’t find any way of making it OK. This time of year is a strange one. The winter sets in and one has the holidays to prepare for and anticipate either with dread or excitement or more usually a mixture of the two. And then there is that moment when you feel your own sap is so low that you just can’t be buggered to put one foot in front of the other let alone DO anything outside. And then she beckons …. that wily woman that is Nature, she softly calls and you dutifully rise and slightly reluctantly go out and there is the magic …. the return of all that new life. And so we feel our energy rise and all of a sudden the malaise is gone. Quite the bewitcher she is and I thank whatever I can thank that I live in such a wonderful world x

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Can’t really put it better than Osyth above, except to say that life is bloody random so you may as well throw caution to the wind. I LOVE it when my kids take the time to tell me or show me something. It’s heart-burstingly wonderful. Happy New Year, dear Lynda. S x
    PS Love that photo of the poppy skeleton – quite magical.


  5. Every time I dash from the house to the shed, I get a moment of joy as I watch the daffodils shoot a little higher each day. Spring really is on the way!


  6. ‘Events’ can cause a shock and be unnerving. We need to appreciate what we have and enjoy it at the time. Nature and children help to raise the spirits. Wishing you all a Happy New Year


  7. They say there is beauty in death, I am not sure how to interpret that, but it is never more true than in a garden, sometimes I believe after the beautiful bud has bloomed and shown like a star, what is left after all the leaves/petals fall is just as beautiful as the bud/flower. I love walking through the garden and seeing the new growth…I love your pictures….its a little different here in the desert, I am seeing babies pop up in the soil so I know the plants are doing well…depending on the plant…one of my cactus has babies at her base so I take that as happy…LOL tomorrow I am going out and really take a look….thanks for the wonderful post….and don’t wait for another invite to learn the guitar, go ask him, how proud he would be to help you learn a song….better take it while they ask, trust me at some point the asking stops….xxxxxxkat

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We have a tiny succulent, I’ve no idea what it’s called, that has come into flower for the first time, to great excitement! It reminds me of you out there in the hot desert tending your babies.


Let me know that I'm not talking to the wall...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s