I so enjoy this time of the year. The seasons swiftly come and go and with them comes the thought of all the various changes that time in flight has brought. The birds are singing, the grass has turned green and the lawns look like rich green carpet. The leaves on the trees have popped open and the first flowers have begun to appear. The colorful tulips can be seen, the lilac bushes are in full bloom, the flowering crab trees are covered with beautiful flowers and you can see the first hints of corn rows in the fields.
I hope we can realize that traveling along life's highway can be beautiful and enriching. The beginning and the destination depend upon us and our attitude.
It is disappointing for me to see all the garbage that people carelessly throw along the road. As we travel life's highway, help us to keep the roads in excellent traveling condition through constant observation and necessary repairs. Observe all the signs as the roads are full of dangerous curves and detours. Spring also brings on the season of construction and it is important to slow down in those areas. It is better to be safe than sorry. I hope that we travel wisely and enjoy.
Speaking of traveling, we recently went for a drive on familiar roads we had not driven for a while. Well, not even that long ago. It was like going on an excursion. So many things had changed, grown, been tore down, rebuilt, moved or modified. Some of the people who lived there still do but others have moved on. You don't have to go on a cruise or to a foreign country to see and do different things because we have so much right here to see at home.
My mother and I drove to Clarks Grove in hopes of finding the plants that she needed at Sonshine Gardens. The place was filled to the max with flowers and more than full of cemetery urns, so spectacular in color and quality. You have to love what you're doing to have such a large number of plants to take care of and Michelle at Sonshine Gardens does. Michelle once told me that one of her biggest thrills in life is seeing the miracle of those little dried up seeds coming to life in the spring. If anyone needs proof of the resurrection, that is one of them. Seeing a greenhouse full of cemetery urns filled with flowers that are in their prime, waiting to be distributed to the various cemeteries for Memorial Day, was breathtaking. It is obvious that she cares and puts a great deal of love in every pot that she plants.
And that isn't enough; she offers the service for caring for the flowers over the hot summer days too and makes sure that they are given the water they desperately need. Many people, especially those who no longer live in the area really appreciate this service as they know that the flowers they have set out in memory of loved ones will be taken care of.
How Michelle does all the things she does it I will never know, but like she said she couldn't if it weren't for the love she has for her profession. She is always looking for new varieties of flowers to try and it seems that every year her garden just gets better.
While preparing to leave Clarks Grove my mother asked if I would mind stopping at the used book store. She was hoping to find a book she has been wanting to read. Surrounded by books of every kind and description is like being in second heaven for my mother. She gets a little envious.
I look at all my books, as well as all the books that my mother has, and think of how we could, and should, be sharing some of the information and stories in them with others. Our minds have thought we too should have a used book store, exchange, or a library of used book here in Geneva or Ellendale. One of the old classrooms at the Geneva Community Center, or the vacant pizza parlor on the "Top Of The Hill" in Ellendale would be perfect.
There is so much good stuff in books to learn about and enjoy. People could also share magazines too; they are too good to throw away but too easy to pile up and contribute to the clutter.
There is a bit of sadness we experienced as we were going by the Clarks Grove Hardware. Bill is closing. He was always able to find just what we were looking for. The Clarks Grove Hardware was a big hardware store and impressive. Meanwhile the committee in charge of the heritage building they built in Clarks Grove are busy with their project.
I remember the saying that my uncle Paul developed, "Clarks Grove, the nicest town, in the most progressive county, in the finest state, and greatest country in the world."
Memorial Day will soon be upon us and we hope that we are able to keep this country and family unit strong and God centered. Help us to maintain the dignity and worth of each individual. Let us not be complacent about our country and forget the reason for its very founding. May we always recall the sacrifices made in the past so that freedom and liberty can exist in this, the present, and in the future.
Birthdays and anniversaries:
• Thursday, May 14th: Clair Dahl, Linda Olson, Anna Mae Peterson, her 10th; Katie Peterson, Ginger Thompson, Bruce Waage, Brad Wayne, Judy VerHey, Mark VerHey, Jeff Christensen, Shannon Krikava
• Friday, May 15th: Carter Hagen, Evan Dobberstein, Megan Grubish, Alex Wayne, Mark Flesche, Dan Hagen, Don Hagen, Nicole Strand Harris, Stephanie Krueger, Neil Berg, Sandy Jensen, Marsha Neitzell, Tammy Thompson, Brett & Jessica Richards, Ralph & Irene Krueger, Jon & Nicole Farr
• Saturday, May 16th: Ron Kubicek, Mark Reistad, Mark Skroch, Vernie Stieglbauer, Kim Lageson, Doug Lembke, Judy Karsjens, Anne Larson, Allycia Zinke, Becky Phagan, Bev White, Annie Larson, Christine & Brian Carlson
• Sunday, May 17th: Laura Caroline Deml, her 8th; Caitlyn Nelson, David Thompson, Dale DeRaad, Rhonda Lund Thevenot, Jerry Blouin, Robert Briggs, Dyne Thereneau, Kay Barclay, Darlyne Paulson, Judith Hatch, Thomas Shawback, Rose & Carl Glienke
• Monday, May 18th: Blake Ihrke, Zachary Jacob Dau, Cory Bailey, David Farr, Arlene Busho, Arlene Cummins, Xan Johnson, Mandy Muri Johannsen, Charlie Hanson, Dan Schember, Hank Thompson, Carol Stohr, Roger Draayer, Kelly Krumwiede, Rod Serdahl, Dan & Val Schember, Sue & Dean Westrum, Ken & Pat Sable
• Tuesday, May 19th: Christina Hill Berry, Madison Schweirjohann, Summer Schember Schultz, Mike Rysavy, John Oolman, Dawn Parks, Tim & Tiffany Hanson
• Wednesday, May 20th: Oakley Baker, Kaye Schember Cady, Laureen Hohansee, Kathy Hanson, Hannah Ashton, Carrie Thorstenson, Penny Nordhorn, Haley Collins, Scott Stohr, Kevin Peterson, Kent Lageson, Josh Kelly, Virginia Jensen, Cynthia Butler, Jay & Marsha Neitzel, Ed & Camille Nelson, Hannah Ashton, Adam & Kristen Arends
Celebrating with you as you mark another year. Hoping that your day is filled with famiy, friends and cheer!