Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
1 Corinthians 3:17

Friday, April 5, 2013

Missing Our Special Trees

We planted a special tree for each of our children at our old house.
I know they're just trees, but I really, really miss them.

This is Caleb's Japanese Flowering Cherry tree. Those blossoms take my breath away.  The way the sun filters through the foliage speaks to me.

We planted Isabelle's tree right before we left for Guatemala in June 2008. The tree wasn't flourishing where it was first planted, though, and the next year we moved it to where it is now, growing beautifully and full of life. It didn't seem significant to me at the time, this replanting, but looking back at our adoption journey, it seems quite fitting and extraordinary to me now.

Ethan's crab apple tree, which, after the brutal pruning it endured at my hands one spring, proved it was a fighter. Oh how I loved that tree in the middle of our front yard! Such luscious blooms and heaven-sweet scent.

Jonah's tree is the only one that doesn't flower, but that doesn't make me love it any less- this was our absolute favorite tree in the backyard, and it provided many a shady respite from the scorching summer sun on afternoons when we'd drag a blanket and some books out to the lawn. Now, thinking back, tears begin to well because of the memories associated with this tree.
Okay, so I can't find the pictures I'm looking for at the moment, and a hungry little someone isn't as thrilled about finding just the right photo as I am, so off to make lunch I go...
That tree started out to provide shade for the little swing set...look at those little boys! Eek! I'm dying of cuteness!
 And it grew and grew, until it shaded out nearly the entire left half of the backyard!

We are sooooo close to pushing past that last little bit of frigid, winter-like weather and jumping straight to Spring. Yesterday afternoon Isabelle, Ryder and I were hanging out on the deck soaking up some glorious vitamin D...okay, so we had run inside to grab some blankets off the couch because it was still quite chilly with the wind blowing, but it felt great! I even wandered around our yard in search of any little green things poking through-- there are a few lilies beginning to appear, and two masses of not-quite-right-looking creeping phlox along the rock wall. Other than that, we're left with mostly misshapen, dying-looking shrubs and plants. I think they'll all have to go. So it's going to be one of those kinds of years, ha. Sweat, more sweat, blistered and calloused hands, dirt-laden fingernails, aching back...but it will all be worth it in the end.

Nearly five months in at this place, there is a familiarity now that almost feels comforting. Almost. I'm trying to be patient with the whole process, and the idea of getting my hands in the dirt out there to breathe some life into the landscape does make my heart pitter-pat a little louder. I've even found myself sketching out plans on the backs of used envelopes or kids' old homework papers, sure signs that my thumb is officially greening up for the season. Now if I could just find that shovel...

This year in particular I'm glad for the renewed hope that Spring so faithfully offers. New beginnings, fresh starts, rejuvenated souls and spirits. All of it. Rather than simply missing what we had at our other house, I'm excited about creating beautiful things for us to treasure here, where we are now.

Oh yeah, I'm going to find that shovel and start diggin'!

A little side note-- no one was starved during the writing of this post; I wrote this part first.  =)

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