As I’ve written in earlier posts this spring, I love this season and all that it brings. Trees with new leaves, grass greening up and flowers popping out of the ground are all part of what makes me feel “twitterpated” for sure.
One of my favorite things about spring is that the Strawberry fields begin to bloom and by late April and May beautiful red berries are ready to be picked. Throughout the years my children were growing up, I took them strawberry picking every year that I could. Dressed in our grungiest clothes and shoes (besides strawberry stains being a hassle, the fields are notoriously muddy) we would make an outing to pick strawberries. Once home I would make jam from much of what we picked and of course, we’d eat them for days popping them into our mouths, mixed with other fruits for breakfast or as the crowning glory for dessert.
Something comes over me when I arrive at a farm to pick strawberries. I’m giddy, excited and oddly nervous – clearly full of mixed emotions. I’m giddy with knowing the sheer fun I’ll have, but the excitement about getting to pick mixes with worry that too many people will show up and “crowd” my space in this wonderful task. You see, I like to imagine myself in the fields as if I’m Laura Ingalls on the prairie; picking berries so that Ma can make dessert for dinner. Or that Mary and I (Laura’s sister) can take some of our own delicious strawberries in our baskets and go sit under the tree by the banks of Plum Creek and just laze the day away eating till our tummies and hearts are full. (By the way, somehow Melissa Gilbert’s exposed Tattoos on DWTS just ruin my Laura image!) I’m much this same way at Christmas Tree Farms, Pumpkin Patches and other “Pick your own Farms”. So what I have to do is chatter inside my head to myself to remember to just enjoy the moment and not worry about how many strawberries I can take home. After all, I can always go again!
This year I’ve already been strawberry picking and I have to say, it’s the best time amongst the strawberry plants I’ve ever had. Why? This year I got to go with my granddaughter, Ansley (God’s Littlest Angel). Oh and we did let her mom, Sammi go, too by the way. I happened to be in Charlotte working and so we set aside this particular morning for the simple pleasure of picking strawberries. Now Ansley’s only seventeen months old so, we had no idea what to expect of her in the fields – especially since we opted NOT to take the stroller. But Good Golly Miss Molly, the child is a reincarnation of Laura Ingalls. She knew Just. What. To. Do. Totally serious about the work, she picked and picked – OK, she also ate and ate. Sammi figured she ate at least 30 juicy strawberries. But, she was precious to watch. Ever so gently she would pick the berry and then plop it into the basket. Each berry she put in the basket brought a smile to her face as if she was saying, “Ta Da, I did it just right.” So, this wonderful excursion to the strawberry fields this year got me to thinking…
The time is Ripe
Having had such a wonderful time with both Sammi and God’s Littlest Angel, I knew it was a moment in the big picture of my life that I would always treasure. I was reminded of a quote from Martin Luther King, Jr.
“The time is always ripe to do the right thing.”
Sure, the strawberries were ripe, but what was really ripe was the moment. It was the right time to take the time to do the right thing – which was to spend time with my loved ones and especially not worry or obsess over who else drove up to the parking lot of the farm to pick strawberries, too.
And then it hit me. The time really is always ripe to do the right thing. We don’t have to wait. For me, this means making the most of every single moment of every single day to do what is right in that moment. Powerful words by a powerful man that I need to live by. Think about it yourself and really digest the truth of this statement. Yep, the time is always ripe to do the right thing. We just have to do it. Oh, and while writing this post I happened upon another wonderful quote, so perfect for this message about spending time with my granddaughter,
“Children are God’s Apostles, sent forth, day by day, to preach of love, hope and peace.“
James Russell Lowell
It’s true. No matter what’s going on in the great big world, to a child it becomes condensed very simply to the moment and they are guided by a desire to love and yep, live in perfect harmony with those around them. Hmmmmm…
To grandchildren, the best dessert in life…