The First Weekend Of Spring In Pictures

Blackbird at Cedar Lake

Blackbird in bush by Cedar Lake at sunset. The bird was angry with me for being there, but I still felt that his temper tantrum made it feel like spring. April 6, 2014.

OK, it’s not really the first weekend of spring, no matter how you measure “spring.” The equinox was way last month, and March is usually a chilly, early spring month in this climate.

It wasn’t this year. March is the traditional transition time, it’s supposed to enter as winter (come in like a lion) and exit spring (out like a lamb). This year, it came in as a polar bear with January-like zero lows, and exited as a slightly less cold, but still chilly, polar bear.

But by Saturday April 5 the world here felt very different. My oldest granddaughter had her party for turning 6, and is obsessed with “Frozen,” so my wife found her dolls of the two main characters. Despite that, the world felt far less frozen, finally, this weekend.

Some signs that spring is here include:

Flowers in bloom. No snowdrops, which is sad because I like those pretty little white flowers that usually grace my garden before the first crocus, and many crocus have yet to be sighted—but in the warmest garden on the south side of the house, the first purple flowers burst into bloom Saturday.

Crocus in bloom

Crocus in warm garden on south side of house–first flowers I have. They even beat the big old maple tree, which is spitting a lot of sap but has not quite bloomed yet.

The untimely arrival of the Easter Bunny. It’s still Lent, but a local greenhouse jumped the gun a bit with its annual Easter-themed “bunny trail” tour, and we took some grand-kids.

Easter Bunny

Granddaughter and wife with Mr. E. Bunny. Or possibly Ms. Bunny. Hard to say.

Changing of the guard at Cedar Lake. The eagles departed—I hope you’ve been seeing some clips from the Decorah eagle cam, where the spring news has been surprisingly good, with two eaglets hatched—but pelicans have moved in. The cries of many kinds of birds can be heard on lazy spring bike rides around the lake.

Pelican and other birds.

Pelican among other birds on Cedar Lake, April 6, 2014.

Backyard play. There was a lot of digging in the sandbox, attempts at hula hoops, swinging and ball tossing this Saturday.

Boy tosses ball.

Grandson tosses football into the air. Backyard spring training is underway.

Ducks on street corners. I shot this image Friday, where the mallards had been swimming in this corner puddle until I reached for my camera and they retreated to the nearby lawn.


Ducks inspect street puddle in Kenwood neighborhood in Cedar Rapids April 4. The female had been swimming in it when I stopped to take their photo. I think they look embarrassed.

Well, there you have it. The green tinge you’ve been noticing in grass is not a mirage. Our maple tree in back has been spitting sap like crazy. We may yet see snow—snow in April is pretty normal in Iowa—but the new season, even if it took it’s time getting here, is finally underway. More spring photos from Cedar Rapids on Flickr.

1 Comment

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One response to “The First Weekend Of Spring In Pictures

  1. We haven’t seen pelicans here yet. But we did in Oklahoma last week. Guess I’ll need to get Jim out to hike next weekend so we can find them locally.

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