Sunshine Pays a Visit to Vashon

Sunshine Pays a Visit to Vashon
Mt. Rainier from Maury Island Vashon
Mount Rainier from the southern tip of Maury Island (which connects to Vashon).

A few days ago, the Pacific delivered a day of delights and a much needed reprieve from the rain. Mt. Rainier stood out across the Sound like a grand back-drop presiding over a lofty opera: so surreal and stunning, I half expected to see brush strokes and stage lighting. The clouds were thinly woven, easily unraveled by a winsome breeze one warp and weft thread at a time. By mid-morning the sun was well above the tree tops and reigning unchallenged. Underfoot, the crocus blossoms, scattered like confetti on the lawn, caught the light and the attention of a few brave honeybees and this backyard explorer. This was indeed a day to seize.

Enjoying an early bloom of sunshine
Crocuses join the sunshine welcome wagon.

Hoping to refresh the stale air and woodsmoke smell of winter lockdown, I propped open all of the doors. The lungs of my old farmhouse took a deep breath and welcomed fresh air through the front door to the East, the backdoor to the West, the warped French doors on the sunny side south and weather side, and the north-facing divided-light door where Boz spends many an hour plotting the demise of indifferent deer and dancing towhees.

Moss on madrona tree
Moss on Madrona

Boz and Gracie retreated to the front porch to nap (and snore)  in the sun, awakening occasionally for a side trip to the lawn, to investigate and to christen a rogue daffodil or two. I headed down to the front field where I marveled (and lamented) over the rapid rate of weed growth on my veggie plot. The orchard looked good, rows of adolescent trees bare-branched and strong, awaiting longer days and warmer soil.

Walking back to the house, tripping over some downed branches and trying to clear my mind of the chores ahead, I took refuge on my lodgepole swing. I ignored the crackle of dried leaves on the seat as another item to be added to my to-do list, and instead closed my eyes, caught the breeze and listened to spring awakening. The robins obliged with a chorus of chirps, the crows followed with fly-by caws, and a duet of bulldogs barked to be fed. Then, the sun kissed my face like a sorely-missed friend, and I forgot all about the weeks of rain.

In that moment the day was mine, and spring had lifted her hem and showed me a little ankle, and for that I am grateful.  Today the rain is back, soaking all that is rooted, legged and held down.  Not a bad thing, as I love the rain and the Northwest’s moody disposition, but it is nice to see that on occasion the sun can shine, and the sky can be blue, and my memory of rainy days can escape me, even in March.

bulldog raincoats
Gracie and Boz are prepared for anything.

In honor of our rain, let me share with you my favorite Seattle joke.

A newcomer to Seattle arrives on a rainy day. He gets up the next day and it’s raining. It also rains the day after that, and the day after that. Standing on his porch, he sees the neighbor kid poke his head out the door and asks him out of despair, “Hey kid, does it ever stop raining around here?” The kid says, “How would I know? I’m only 6.”

lodgepole swing big leaf maple
My outdoor office on a not so sunny day.



18 thoughts on “Sunshine Pays a Visit to Vashon”

    • Sarah, you are so right, Boz and Gracie are spoiled, but my Mom crafted the rain capes so I had a co-conspirator. 😉 Here’s to the coming light and warmth!

  • As a rain-soaked, native Washingtonian, I have to admit that I laughed out loud at your joke. It must be true that humor is based on pain.

    • Linda if it’s any consolation, I feel your pain, but I hesitate to admit it publicly; it’s so easy to fall quickly into my whiney voice. (Not pretty.)

  • Ha–I laughed at that joke!

    You description of the day was marvelous….and oh, the crocus–what a sight for sore eyes. Beautiful!
    We also had a warm (50!!!!!) day yesterday. The snow was far too deep to do anything in the yard, so we put down the tailgate of the truck, sat in the warm sunshine sipping Seagams wine coolers and listened to the birds. I thought I had died and gone to heaven………..

  • I know a guy in Oregon. He helped a friend of his move into a house in his town. Several days later he got a frantic phone call. She said she’d just looked out her back window… and “what is THAT???” It was Mt. Hood. It had been there all along, but because of the clouds and rain she had no idea!

    • Alison, that is so funny and so true. I’ve been on the ferry at times when I point out where Mt. Rainier. The visitor or tourist just looks at me blankly, like I’m playing a local joke on them. I have to assure them, yes, there really is a 14,000 foot mountain behind those clouds.

  • Your post helped get me through yesterday’s rain! I love the colors this time of year! Thanks for the luscious photos. And give Boz and Gracie a scratch for me.

  • Tom, I’m glad that you seem to like your area’s moody weather. We have been having some of the same here in Louisiana for the last 2 weeks and I am ready for some warm weather and the sun. The temps are creeping up finally and the daffodils and plum and pear trees are thinking about blooming. The flowering quince of course began peeking out a month ago and got nipped a couple of times. Louisiana had a real winter for a change. We actually had some snow 4 times!

    • I never think of Louisiana getting snow–and four times, wow! You had more snow then we did. We’ve really only had one minor snow storm. I cleaned out the barn today and will start turning some soil in the weeks to come, too early and all you get are lush weeds around here, so a little patience is order for me. Take care, here’s to spring in both our corners of the world.

  • oooh Robins! Not here yet. Yesterday it was 50 today 26 and a little snow, tomorrow 47. oooh the sun is shinning! and there it goes…If you don’t like the weather in ND wait a day.

    • Deb I can’t even imagine, as our temps tend to fluctuate between 40 -60 this time of year, but usually 45 -55 most of the time. I’ll send a few robins your way!

  • Lovely blog! I just stumbled across it yesterday after my daughters asked if we could ever grow citrus trees in Minnesota. I wondered if it was possible indoors, and I read your post about your trees that you winter inside. Your pictures were so quaint that I needed to read more!

    • Thanks Katie, I sure appreciate the kind words and visit. And yes, citrus trees can survive indoors in the winter! Lemonade for everyone!

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