Spring has sprung here in north Alabama. The sun is shining, it’s mid-seventies in temperature, the flowers are blooming, and the humidity is still relatively low. All that, combined with Daylight Savings Time, has given me a bad case of spring fever. I do not want to sit and write today. I want to be out digging in the dirt, playing in the leaves, planting something. I know from past experience, though, that if I go out and rake last fall’s leaves or whatever other thing might need doing outside right now, my sinuses will flair up and I will be miserable for days. So instead I have expended all this spring fever on house cleaning. Don’t panic! I do not mean any real serious house cleaning, just some sweeping and vacuuming and laundry.

If we were not in the middle of these trees, my sinuses would not have such a problem with outside activities. But here, with all the leaves and dampness and lack of any real circulation, we have mold spores and mushrooms and all sorts of lovely things practically year round. It is one reason we have considered clearing out all of the big trees, but could never quite bring ourselves to do so. And one reason I am looking forward to moving to an established yard rather than trying to carve some sort of yard out of a forest.

Another reason I would love to be in an established yard is due to all the poison ivy and poison oak here. For several years I had a nasty outbreak of what, I did not have a clue. But it itched and spread all over my arms and legs. After about the third year I finally discovered it was a poison oak reaction. I had never reacted to poison ivy before, so this was new to me.

Another new item that we discovered our first summer here was chiggers. It seems that chiggers love pine straw, and we certainly have a lot of that here with all these huge pine trees. Chiggers are most lovely. NOT!

So, spring fever I may have, but I will do my best to limit my energy to the indoors and hope that next year we are in a place that is more conducive to outdoors activities.