The perfect lilac

In my mind at least, the perfect lilacs this year were over on Mortenson Road, not far from the intersection with University Boulevard.  Lilacs always make me think of my mom.  I was born when mom was 40, so unfortunately, I will always think of my mom as old (I know, 40 is NOT that old!).  Most lilac bushes are old too, standing the test of time, you don’t fully understand where they came from or what they’ve been through, but you love their beautiful profusion, the intoxicating fragrance, their simplicity.  My mom came from a simple background, she and her sister and her mom making it on their own by housekeeping and living with relatives.  They enjoyed simple things, creamed vegetables on toast for supper, sprucing up a little black dress with a variety of collars and cuffs, going swimming in the rock quarry and singing duets.  I don’t know where all the lilacs in Ames have come from, but I love their reminders that the best things in life don’t have to be complicated and expensive and that my mom was able to create a beautiful life in the same spirit.

Iowa State’s Swans

I’ve been saving these pics for a special day.  I’m off today and looking forward to rambling around Ames, perhaps capturing more great shots like these I got last week.  Back in Indiana, someone sent me a link to photos of  Iowa State’s two swans on the lake…that was the clincher for me…..I had to come here for graduate school!

   Just to the west of the Memorial Union, red buds adorn the rim of Lake LaVerne.  I looked anxiously for the two white swans, but didn’t see them swimming.

 

 

Then as I was trying to shoot more red bud, guess what I saw?!

Two lovers, hidden under the trees, with their own little case of spring fever!

Once in a lifetime spring???

Every day the last couple of weeks, when I head out into Ames, I almost faint, the spring flowering show has been so beautiful.  You know how it usually goes?  You wait all of Feb, March and some of April for the blossoms to pop, and a day or so after they do, you get an April shower, and it’s all gone, in the blink of an eye.  And usually it’s a procession, yellow forsythia first, then red buds, THEN white apple blossoms and finally the violets and crab apples.  As the next blossom appears, the previous ones fade.  This year, it’s all out there at once, lingering until the last one on stage has made its appearance!

We’ve had a gentle rain this morning on this side of town, but if the skies clear, I think I can get out there and get some more photos of this once in a lifetime spring!

Violets

I love that you can still find patches of violets.

I had to smile the other day when a group of sometimes rough little boys at school came in from recess with their fists carrying  bunches of violets.  They were in such a rush to get the fragile little flowers into some water.  Flowers bring out the best in all of us!