‘A kite, a sky, and a good firm breeze,
And acres of ground away from trees,
And one hundred yards of clean, strong string —
O boy, O boy! I call that Spring!’ -Mark Sawyer
Spring has officially sprung! And as my oldest pointed out a couple of weeks ago, Mr. Groundhog was slightly off with his prediction. We’ve definitely had an early spring in these parts.
I so look forward to the seasonal changes throughout the year, each with its own blessings. And now we have a whole new season full of merriment to look forward to again!
Spring is a season of renewal. The world around us is literally coming back to life. There’s also a return of color after the darkness of winter and lots of brand new life as well, both plant and animal.
The signs of spring are all around. The flowers are blooming. The tree branches are budding. The daffodils are revealing their sunny faces everywhere I look. Birds are singing and busily building their nests. The gentle spring winds have picked up and we’ve had a few refreshing spring showers, nothing torrential. So, the world outside our window is looking clean and green!
This renewal is filling our hearts as well!
Inspired by all that’s flourishing around us, we’ve been excitedly planning our own adventures for this spring.
Here’s what’s on our spring agenda so far…
Spring Bucket List:
–Visit a Local Farm or Zoo: Gather the whole family for a visit to a local farm. Take your time wandering about and stop to admire the precious new born lambs staying close to their mamas and the sweet, bright yellow chicks waddling about. We were able to tour P. Allen Smith’s Moss Mountain Farm last spring and it was such a treat! Touring a farm in the spring is truly ideal! The daffodils at Moss Mountain Farm were in full blooms and the animals were at their sweetest. We also enjoyed a delicious seasonally inspired meal! If there’s not a farm offering tours in your area, try your local zoo. Our zoo has partnered with Heifer International to create the Arkansas Heritage Farm. This exhibit enables visitors to touch, feed, and groom the animals! Heifer International is close to my heart because I volunteered with the nonprofit for several years. If you are not familiar with Heifer’s mission to alleviate world hunger, you should really check them out!
–Visit a Botanical Garden: Each spring, we look forward to strolling amongst the loveliness at our local botanical gardens, Garvan Woodland Gardens. We take our time wandering about, admiring the rolling grounds, full of daffodils in early spring and tulips later in the season. There’s also an enchanting children’s garden that the boys love to explore. There are gigantic climbing rocks, whimsical bridges, and a cave with a waterfall feature. The kids get a kick out of the fish and the peacocks that strut around the gardens as well.
–Go Strawberry Picking & Make Strawberry Everything: We try to go strawberry picking every year. We haven’t gone as of yet this year but I’m already seeing local strawberries being offered around town. I plan to get my hands on some as soon as possible and we’ll be feasting on these delicious red beauties as well as making strawberry ice cream, strawberry milk shakes, strawberry shortcake, strawberry everything… We even spied this AMAZING strawberry shortcake milkshake, made with local strawberries, at one of our favorite restaurants and couldn’t let it pass us by. So yummy!
–Make a Trip to the Nursery: If you are highly ambitious, plant a whole garden. Or start small by experimenting with some herbs or container gardening. We just moved into a new house. So this spring, we are sticking to landscaping our new home, and maybe growing some herbs. But we’re hoping to try some raised bed gardening soon!
–Get Creative with Spring Crafting: Brainstorm and come up with some spring inspired crafts to do with your children. One of our favorite resources for seasonal crafting is The Artful Year, by Jean Van’t Hul. It’s full of inspirational crafts and recipes to help your family celebrate the seasons. Our boys had a blast making their very own stepping stone last spring. It’s now proudly displayed in our landscaping out front for all visitors to see! You can easily pick up the supplies to make one but we used a DIY stepping stone kit we’d lovingly been given. The boys were so thrilled with their creation and they made sure to add all of our names too. We’re still waiting for some craft inspiration for this spring! Any and all ideas are welcome!
–Visit the Farmer’s Market: Your local farmer’s market is the place to go for seasonal produce this spring such as spring greens, fresh herbs, and spring veggies (like radishes, peas, and baby carrots). Use the goodies you find to put some mason jar salads together or cook up a pot of your favorite spring soup.
–Attend a Spring Festival: Spring is the time when outdoor festivals really kick into gear. Look for the festivals offered in your area. Many are free and it’s entertaining for the whole family. We attend our local spring fest yearly. It’s held right along the banks of the Arkansas River. There are arts and crafts, pony rides, lots of yummy food and food trucks, music, a parade and so much more.
–Bring Spring Indoors: Watch for symbols of spring and bring them into your home whenever possible. (We didn’t bring this sweet nest indoors but it was created right on our front door wreath!) Look for spring flowers, flowering branches, bunnies, eggs, bird nests… Go daffodils picking and bring home a large bouquet. We go to the Wye Mountain Daffodil Festival every year and bring home enormous hand picked daffodil bouquets. The kids enjoy running around to pick the flowers and then we get to enjoy the gorgeous bouquets back at home. Or bring home some tulips. Better yet, obtain the bulbs and grow these lovely flowers yourself to pick whenever you’d like.
–Get Outdoors, Get Active, & Have a Picnic: The new warmth of spring is incredibly enticing after winter! And I look forward to these first warm days of spring all winter long. It’s the perfect time to get outdoors, enjoy the fresh air and some sunshine. Nature hikes in the woods and walks in the park are in order, as are bike rides, frisbee, pick up games, and hopscotch. Don’t forget to take your kite along for some flying fun. And blowing bubbles is always a great way to pass a slow spring afternoon spent out of doors. The weather the time of year is also great for some early canoeing, floating, or fishing! You’ll be hungry after all these active amusements so don’t forget to pack a spring picnic on your way out the door. Grab some strawberries, spring veggies, olives, and cheese and crackers or make up some salads or sandwiches. Pack strawberry lemonade to drink- yum!
–Make A Rainy Day Box: Mrs. Sharp’s Traditions, by Sarah Ban Breathnach, first inspired me to create a rainy day box for our boys. Although, Mrs. Sharp has an entire cupboard dedicated to rainy day amusements. I’d haphazardly been doing my own version of the rainy day box for years, but Mrs. Sharp inspired me to be more intentional about it. As with any good tradition, limited use helps preserve the excitement. So, the rainy day box only comes out on snowy or rainy days. The possibilities for what to include in your box are endless but I always add various types of paper, stickers, tape, glue sticks, pipe cleaners, safe scissors, brown paper bags and ribbon. I also added activity books, small puzzles, and a variety of other arts and crafts supplies I’ve collected over the years.
–Take a Walk in the Rain: Why not take the kids out for a short walk when there’s a light spring shower, and no thunder or lightening of course. Get your rain gear on and take an umbrella too if you wish. They are fun to twirl! Sing, dance, and laugh in the rain with your kids, jump in big puddles. Then, head back home for a nice warm bath to get everyone cleaned up and cozy again!
–Let the Fresh Air In: Early spring is a great time to open all the windows and let the fresh air in. It’s especially rejuvenating after a long winter to let the breeze sweep through and refresh your whole home. I try to open our windows for at least an hour a day starting in early spring. It makes a noticeable difference in the air quality of our home and replenishes our spirits as well.
–Do Some Spring Cleaning: I’m usually in the mood to do a bit of spring cleaning after the darker winter months. You can either go all out and do a major overhaul or tackle a specific project. I’m planning to focus primarily on declutting this year, with a bit of actual cleaning along the way where necessary. If you are looking for some guidance in this area you might consider picking up Marie Kondo’s Spark Joy. It’s an illustrated companion to her bestseller The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. Her plan is easy to follow and will help you simplify and declutter your home quickly. Another great book that I’ve returned to for years, (anytime I need some help with decluttering, organization, or intentional living), is Tsh Oxenreider’s Organized Simplicity. This book addresses a lot more than your physical environment. Yes, it will help get your home in order but you will also learn how to make a family mission statement, manage your time and money, create a home management notebook, and so much more! Finally, if you’re short on time and like working in short bursts over a long period, you should check out Organize Now: a Week-by-Week Guide to Simplify Your Space and Your Life by Jennifer Ford Berry. It’s another book I often pull off the shelf when I’m needing to overhaul my paperwork, routines, events, or personal space. Lots of great tips here!
–Read Books About Spring: Go to the library and check out books about spring and all things spring related. As I’ve mentioned previously, we love reading and I’m planning a separate post about our favorite spring picture books. So please stay tuned for more! But one of my personal all time favorite reads for spring is The Secret Garden. I would reread it each and every spring if I didn’t already have an exorbitantly long reading list, haha!
That’s our spring bucket list for this year… so far.
What’s on your spring bucket list? What are your favorite activities and crafts for spring?
Can’t wait to hear!
Thanks for reading friends!