Today is one of those beautiful early spring days in southern Vermont.  The snow melted, the grass is greener, the forsythia is blooming bright yellow and daffodils are proudly dancing in the warm breeze.

It’s a pleasure to be outside on days like this. 

Although wandering through the yard brings some other things into focus, too. It’s hard to ignore the leaves still crowding out the roses, the chicken coop’s floor, the rabbits’ cages…

I start in on the chicken coop and ask son number two to bring me a different shovel.  He complies, and then he surprises me by grabbing the original shovel and digging in himself. 

As we are finishing the chicken coop, our Spanish daughter is finishing putting the rabbits out.  (It’s her favorite chore.) It’s extra work to clean out the cages, but quickly done while we work together.

We are now out of chicken and rabbit food.  So I call on my daughter, and we’re off–with the dogs–for a quick run for supplies.

Eventually, I reach the rose bushes and those leaves.  I have quite a pile built up, so I ask son number one to get a tarp.  Together, we rake, pile, pull and dump.

My silver lining?  I’m happy to have had the chance for each of their help today.  (It might not necessarily have been theirs.)