Signs of Spring

This is a duck my daughter photographed by our house. I got a little artsy with it for fun.

It looks like spring may be here. Here are the signs: My oldest boy is trying to plan how he's going to ask his girlfriend to the prom. You see, the asking has got to be some sort of big production--an event all by itself. For example, his friend just had my husband supposedly "arrest" his date and take her by handcuffs to his car, where inside a big poster said, "PROM or PRISON? YOUR CHOICE." My son finally determined to make a photo puzzle of his face that his girlfriend will have to put together. It took two days to get a photo he approved of and format it correctly with a typed message. Then we had to overnight it to the house. Sheesh. I think I liked it better when a guy just handed me a flower and said, "Wanna go to prom?"

Another sign: My kids suddenly want to go swimming. Yesterday they went to our local indoor beach (a huge wave machine pool) and swam for several hours. They're also asking about taking the guinea pigs outside. They're throwing balls in and out of the house.

Another sign: I feel like cleaning things thoroughly and getting more organized. I want to redecorate the house and relandscape the yard. Whether or not I can (and will) do it is a different matter.

Another: I can actually maneuver the van out of the driveway without hitting a huge block of snow or spinning on a patch of ice.

Another: Copies of my book are starting to arrive (it's on the "spring release" list) and my editor is asking me to begin doing some marketing research.

My husband ordered a box of my picture books a while back and a few days ago they were sitting on the doorstep. Hmmmm. He got his copies before I got my advance copies? He always knows the tricks. I guess his copies were part of a promotional pre-release deal. So he had me sign them for his friends, but insisted that the get the "first signed copy."

I remember how years ago he urged me to submit a package of my manuscripts to a literary agent. "They're not ready," I kept telling him, so he set a deadline. I was irritated with him the day I mailed them off, because I still believed they weren't ready and I felt like he was forcing me. "Today's the deadline, remember?" he said, smiling. I'm so grateful for him, because I don't think they would ever have been "ready" enough for me to send. It's so nice having a spouse who believes in me--I can't even put it into words.

Oh, another sign of spring: I've got my taxes.


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