Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Daffodil Memories




Each year when the brilliant yellow Daffodils welcome the return of Spring I seem to go back in time. A time when I was a little girl, remembering each Spring's first blossoming of the golden yellow flowers. My grandmother's yard was filled with these elegant flowers. They lined the back of her house from one end to the other. They bordered the property line and separated her yard from the neighbor's yard. They bloomed around the Fig Tree just outside her kitchen window, and through different spots of her back yard. I can hear her voice just as if it were yesterday "The jonquils are starting to bloom".

When I moved into my new home 10 years ago, I began to learn the difference between jonquils and daffodils. Silently, in my mind, I accused my neighbors of not knowing the difference, when in reality I was the one that didn't know the difference. A few years later, while surfing the web, I found the difference in the two. Supposedly, jonquils have 2-6 flowers on one stem while daffodils only have 1 flower on each stem. My Grandmother had both in her yard, although she called them all...jonquils. It seems she was not the only one one, I think a lot of older women here in the South call all daffodils...jonquils.

Each year, when the first daffodil blooms, I always have to pick it and put in a vase and set it in my kitchen, just like my Nannie did. Every time I look at that one single flower sitting on my kitchen table, I am reminded of my childhood during the beginning of spring. For some reason I always felt that a handful of freshly picked flowers would brighten any one's day. I go back in time, and I remember when my Aunt, only 8 years older than I, was upset and crying from an argument she had with my grandmother. I couldn't understand why my Nannie hurt her feelings so bad, but as she laid in her room crying, I ran outside and picked a handful of daffodils and jonquils. I tried to arrange them just perfect in a small glass vase. I knocked on my Aunts bedroom door, then handed her the bouquet of flowers. I still can see the smile on her face.

I also remember making my Mama an arrangement of golden yellow jonquils and daffodils. Again, I would try to arrange them just perfect, and I always made sure I picked the prettiest ones. I then would wrap them in a wet paper towels, and then line the paper towel with aluminum foil so the water wouldn't drip everywhere. When Mama would come pick me up from my Grandmother's I would thrust the bouquet of daffodils and jonquils in her hands. It always gave me a sense of pride when she smiled and told me how lovely they were.

A few years ago, my youngest daughter fell and broke her ankle. She was waiting on me to fix her lunch as she laid in the recliner with her ankle propped up, her cheeks still wet from the tears of pain. As I was making her sandwich, I glanced out the window, and saw my daffodils. I quietly sneaked out the back door and picked her a few. I then placed each one in a vase and placed the vase on her tray with her sandwich and carried it to her. At first, she just looked at me like I was crazy, then she smelled the flowers and smiled "Thank You Mama, they are pretty" she said in a soft whisper with a smile that extended from ear to ear.

The Daffodils have quit blooming now, and their soft yellow petals have withered and turned brown. I will have to wait another year before they whisper to me, the sweet childhood memories.



3 comments:

  1. A lovely story, a lovely tradition, and lovely photo's.
    Nice blog, Kelly. I look forward to reading more posts and also, thanks for checking out my blog!

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  2. Very nice post. I love daffodils and have some in my yard. I enjoy watching the children walk by and snap a few off that have peeked their heads through the fence and take them to their teacher or moms each spring. Thank you for visiting my blog and becoming a follower, I am now following yours. I hope to get a post out soon, it has been busy around my place. Hugs

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  3. Thank Yall for following and I will be reading more post from each of you

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Sometimes, when a bird cries out, or the wind sweeps through a tree, or a dog howls in a far off farm, I hold still and listen a long time.
We live in all things, and all things live in us.