|As I Was Saying
By Opal Toney
Well, I’m looking forward for spring, but when I woke up this morning and
opened the door to go feed the cats and give Son #2’s dog food, whose name
is “Bounce a Little,” but it takes quite a lot to feed him. I have to watch,
or the cats wouldn’t get a bite!
I enjoy fall and winter when Santa comes, but spring is my favorite.
The Last Word: I enjoy them all! – O.T.
View From Here
By Katherine Veno
Into the third month of the new year already! I can hardly remember where
January and February have disappeared and here Spring is knocking on the
Is it me? Or is the world going faster while I am in low gear. My instincts
give in and let Spring Fever take over. I have been planting seeds and
flowers like crazy. The operative word here is “crazy.” My mother always
told me to wait until after the “Easter freeze” to plant new flowers or
start my garden.
It is obvious that I remember what she said, but if I get close to a garden
center I am out of control. So I have a new plan. In avoidance of the coming
freeze predicted annually by my much smarter mother, I am going to try and
resist anymore planting until after the Easter Bunny hops by my place.
Good luck with this I tell myself. If a neighbor starts planting something
beautiful and flowering I want to do it too. If I see another gardener out
trimming and mulching, I want to join in. Then my ears ring with the words
I wonder where this came from, but I do remember times in my not so distant
past when I bought trays of beautiful spring flowers and tiny tomato plants
and hurried home so excited. I dug and mulched, and planted them. I sat back
with a big tall glass of sweet tea and admired my work and the sheer beauty
of it all. I watered, and I fertilized. They were growing and flourishing
under my hands until the temperature dropped off the map, and the rain came
down, and they froze under my makeshift plastic bucket and bags cover-ups.
They all drooped, turned their tiny faces to the ground, and never recovered
as the dreaded Easter freeze turned them into ground covering stalks of
I think I know why myself and others get so excited over spring plants. It
is the color and fragrance filling the air at the open nurseries if you get
out and walk about. Uplifting, dazzling displays make me think I can
re-create the same thing at home and live among a lush tropical landscape. I
do not think about how the soaring summer will burn up my fragile palms, and
begonias. The expensive hibiscus that flourishes in the tropics with daily
showers of water from the skies, will wilt and droop because the sun and
heat is unrelenting in Texas summers.
I have already succumbed and planted with the help of my friend, Maria, a
lush, white-flowering potato vine. I am in hopes it will shade my sunny
kitchen window by June. The tag says it is fast-growing. It has been in the
ground for three days now, and it still looks the same. I resist the urge to
over-water and give it food. Maria is from Belize where everything grows
wild and lush. The bromeliad that I have carted in and out of the house has
limped along through this winter and has made it to the porch. In her native
country she says they grow so huge they topple trees to the ground. Mine is
the same size as it was two Valentine’s grocery store aisle displays ago.
But, it does have two young plants growing beside it. There is something to
be said for that.
Of course, spring always makes me want chicks that grow into chickens, and
baby bunnies that grow into rabbits. I have had Easter rabbits that lived
with me so long I leash trained them, and baby chicks that grew into fierce
hens and roosters and live at my rural friends homes now. I am trying to
resist Chick and Rabbit Days at Tractor Supply.
Why does March have only wind that people associate with it? There should
also be March warnings about plants in the ground too soon before the
inevitable freeze, and small furry and feathered friends as well.
Happy Springtime readers.
By Emily Gail Lundy
“Life isn’t Fair.” I’ve never liked this line or excuse for occurrences we
don’t like. What is fair? Would we know when something is unfair? What if we
are somewhat part of the problem. I live by “Life is filled with surprises
or the totally unexpected.” It is difficult to plan for everything; I like
it that way. But unfair?
Sure, I’ve had hurt feelings, been treated though I was not good enough to
do or go whatever; had feelings of being unfair (that word again) when I
didn’t know or think I was.
My career was one of ups and downs. There could be thrilling moments or
thoughts of walking off anywhere, just anywhere.
Once the one in charge decided teachers of a similar subject should have a
HEAD of the department. In my assignments as senior English IV, I had my
M.S. and B.S. with both majors in business education, both minors in
English, one course shy of a double major. I began enjoying teaching English
more even though my work load doubled.
Others in this group of English teachers were not English majors. The
Journalism major taught with diligence, compassion, and dedication. The
Drama major was most successful in her English classes; maybe some of the
newer kids on the block had English majors. Anyway, I was known for ideas,
scatterbrainness, disorganization, the messy desk, no neat files of
information, etc. I loved what I taught.
It was logical that the principal chose the drama major with strict
organization of her presentations, her records, everything in her room.
I hurt although I understood. The next morning as I prepared to get to work,
always early, the hurt feeling entered again. There was no extra
compensation for being Head, but these from all departments might have
special decision-making meetings, and most were women.
That afternoon a poem awaited me in the mail: It has become my guide, my
mantra, and I have shared it before:
“As the years roll onward and I leave the past behind,
Much I have counted as sadness but proves that God is kind.
Many a full-covered rosebush had thorns of hidden pain.
Many a rock- filled pass has led to fields of golden grain.” Anon.
Soon the Heads were chosen to interview for a few replacements in the high
school, even traveling was involved. They made their choices, agreement with
the administration followed, and we had new personnel eventually. Other
teachers were upset, some furious with the decisions. The Heads were on the
Then I saw my poem at work. I was really happy not to be one of the
committee; I would have taken the complaints personally, brooded for weeks,
most like had several headaches. No, I was not complaining; I was at peace
and happy to be just a teacher.
In many ways, sometimes surprisingly, my poem has flooded my mind with
assurance and contentment where life has me. “Let God and let go” is a
calmer for many as is “Seek Ye First the Wisdom of the Lord.”
What if in some way, Life is Fair. As I slightly contradict myself, would we
then know when it is unfair?
On a footnote, at one of those many English workshops for us, our department
went to TCU for a week. That first Monday, I began having nausea after every
meal and soon turned clammy in sessions, held my head in my hands, lived on
cinnamon rolls and water in order to make it to the mall three nights. My
roommate, the work horse of the department, was going to have surgery once
we went home; then came disturbing news for the Head that family situations
with elderly relatives required she come home.
Not only did she go home but also resigned as teacher. This left a sad
group, and we made my roommate our new Head. I didn’t feel any emotion, only
relief and belief although some time I’m slow.