Excitement in the wings...

I don't know about you, but I have been kind of buried under a snowbank the last few months. Yes, the snow is ridiculously high, but the days, too, have seemed  brutally long despite nightfall arriving just as we finish up dinner. So what have I been up to? Well, I have finished writing 144 pages of a gardening magazine (Container Gardening 2011) and gained experience writing everything from the table of contents to the final page. To be honest, I don't think I will even so much as read a plant tag this summer. Full sun, partial shade...I don't care. The magazine, however, is gorgeous and is certainly leagues above any gardening magazine I have laid eyes on! Of course, Matthew Mead shot and produced every story; so how can you go wrong?

The other day, I went for a walk with a good friend and we both felt a spring in our step as the sun shone stronger than it has in months. I could feel its warmth lift me out of the winter doldrums and we chatted about spring fashions and the return of brighter days with nightfall arriving when it should. I look forward to spring cleaning (really!) and clearing the cobwebs from my home and my head.  And although we won't be heading anywhere exciting as a family this March break, I do have an upcoming trip to Utah to look forward to!

Last June when we shot Stephanie Nielson's family at Smeeks (in Arizona), we did not get the opportunity to meet her. While we filled her children and their friends with generous doses of sugar, she lay in a hospital bed battling a painful recovery from yet another major surgery. When she emailed me, fretting like only a mother does about whether her children had their hair combed and if we needed anything and how sad she was that she was missing out on the experience, I wrote back and reassured her that she would be front and center at the next one...that Matthew had big plans for her for the next (this summer's) issue. And here we are: this March we will head to Provo and photograph Stephanie and her sisters (yes, Courtney, too!) for a very special entertaining feature. And I cannot tell you what it means to me to finally be able to meet her, give her a hug and tell her just how much she inspires me everyday with her spirit, courage and determination to regain  and redefine her life. My words will be nothing she hasn't heard before, but it means so very much to me to be able to say them. Can you believe she is skiing again??

Oh, and you can bet I will need to step up my wardrobe in anticipation of meeting the uber stylish Stephanie and sisters! Three more weeks and I'll be there...I can't wait! And fingers crossed, when I return it should be nice enough to hook up the porch swing for those April days when it is not raining!