Spring is in the Air… Finally.

It’s May first, May Day. As a kid, living in a small New England town, May day was always a fun day. Back in school, we still did the Maypole. Yes, I actually grew up dancing around a white pole with colorful ribbons. We danced in and out, winding the satiny ribbons around the Maypole, until it was woven up in color. No doubt, the boys did not enjoy this as much as I did. But, I like to think that we all appreciated the festive harkening of spring.

Image: deafpagancrossroads.com

Image: deafpagancrossroads.com

To drive the small town, good old days vision further… I also grew up collecting flowers with my friends, and leaving them on people’s door steps for May Day. We would pick bouquets— sometimes from their gardens, unaware at the time of the work that had gone into those gardens, sometimes weeds which we thought were pretty— and we set them at the front door, rang a doorbell and ran. Then we’d sit and watch our neighbors find these gifts and we’d yell, “Happy May Day!” We thought we were so slick, and we loved doing something so nice for our neighbors. We chose the houses carefully, often selecting elderly neighbors, who we thought would really love the gesture.

In New England, May generally heralds true spring, nearly summer. By April, things are generally blooming; the snow has melted; green has sprouted all around and the temperatures are much warmer. One of the things I always loved about New England was that there were four distinct seasons, clearly separate from each other. In the midwest, the seasons were a bit blurred.

Local color

Local color

Here in the Pacific Northwest, there are really two seasons: wet/fall-winter and dryer/spring-summer. Note, not dry: dryer. Spring is slower to arrive here. By mid-April to May 1st,  flowers begin to pop up and bloom—Skagit county, 25 minutes from here is renowned for it’s tulips each year. Our gardens burst into life; the trees flower and turn green; and, if we’re lucky, there’s less gray, less rain. Unlike my childhood, my kids have not grown up with Maypoles, or guaranteed sunshine— but oh when the sun comes out on May Day, and temperatures rise above 50, hope abounds! I want to sing and dance, and wrap colorful ribbons around a May Pole. I want to take my camera everywhere. I want to stretch out on new grass, and replenish my depleted vitamin D levels.

This is where you'll find me today... iced decaf, water and sun.

This is where you’ll find me today… iced decaf, water and sun.

Voilà! Today we have a picture perfect May Day. The sun is out; the water is like glass; temperatures are headed toward 60, and spring is definitely in the air! It inspires me to get some flowers and leave them for my neighbors. They are older, and are struggling with some difficult times. Flowers would brighten their day. It makes me want to get out and walk; it inspires me to go to my favorite coffee shop on the water and write. Spring, when it happens lightens moods and brightens horizons. It gives me hope that summer will in fact come. Happy May Day!

What’s spring like where you live and what’s your favorite part about it? Did you ever celebrate May Day? Leave a comment.


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About Dawn Quyle Landau

Mother, Writer, treasure hunter, aging red head, and sushi lover. This is my view on life, "Straight up, with a twist––" because life is too short to be subtle! Featured blogger for Huffington Post, and followed on Twitter by LeBron James– for reasons beyond my comprehension.
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18 Responses to Spring is in the Air… Finally.

  1. Today was a beautiful Spring day in Augusta, Maine also! (I hope I didn’t just jinx it) 🙂


  2. Carrie Rubin says:

    I remember leaving little baskets of candies (but not flowers) on my friends’ and neighbors’ doorsteps for May Day, though unlike you, I was too chicken to shout ‘Happy May Day’. 🙂 Do people still do that?


  3. I went to my grandson’s school where they had planned a walk through the neighborhood with flower baskets to lay on the porches of each house we passed. With three classrooms of K-1’s (!) it was quite an event. Several residents who were home waved at the children and thanked them. I am glad I was able to attend. And like you, we had perfect weather. 😉


  4. It really does put a little extra bounce in your step, doesn’t it? The blue skies, warmer temperatures and seeing all those little buds popping up everywhere — I’m loving it. The idea of May Day is wonderful, too. Someone came by today and actually brought me some pretty yellow flowers, so your post couldn’t have been more timely. 🙂
    Happy May Day, my beautiful friend! xox


    • Dang, I sent a response from my phone, and it clearly didn’t show up! No doubt, a few days of sun and warmer temps here is a big boost. We live with a lot of gray and cool, so it’s extra sweet! Happy May Day indeed!


  5. Cathy Ulrich says:

    We had a May Day celebration at my elementary school every year and we, too, danced the Maypole. It was so fun! Beautiful shot of the tulip field, Dawn. And I REALLY wish I were at your coffee shot, along about now… 🙂


  6. Growing up in New England as well, we would leave freshly picked flowers at a neighbor’s door (ring the bell and run away). And they were often elderly, and we sometimes would pick one or two from their flower beds as well. But I never did the maypole dance (although I do know what it is).

    I made it over to the tulip fields a week ago, on a sunny day. They were beautiful. In fact, the banner on my blog is from last year’s Tulip Festival. Happy May Day!


    • Sad that some of these traditions have disappeared. If you saw Mike’s comment, on this post, it’s not gone all together… but less common than it once was. The tulips are a highlight ever year! Love seeing the fields in Skagit! Thanks for sharing Mariner.


  7. Lillian says:

    You had me at,”my favorite coffee shop on the water.” Heavenly!! I love how spring makes people feel like it’s all such a wonderful breath of fresh air!


    • Yes, we have a lot of wonderful coffee shops this is where coffee was invented, I’m told… but this place is especially divine. My photo does NOT do it justice! Amazing to throw open the windows and bring in the air, feel driven to clean things up, etc… Love spring.


  8. I don’t recall every celebrating May Day. But this is my “birthday week” so I’m trying to celebrate each day through Sunday. Yesterday- matinee and ballet at night; today going to my parents in CT, biking on the weekend, Sunday dinner w/ friends. Happy May! Spring finally here I just hope we don’t jump straight into hot humid summer which is what usually happens now in NJ.


    • Happy Birthday Lisa! What a wonderful way to spend the week… sounds like you’re hitting all the things you love to do. I don’t see grandkids in there? Enjoy your week, and happy May, happy spring, happy birthday!



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