The sun beckoned me even before I opened my eyes. Saturday. Thoughts of coffee and toast with cinnamon sugar drove me from my bed. The day stretched out before me. Finally a day with nothing pressing for attention, and even the things that were had been filed away to the back of my mind to handle some other day. Any other day. Just not today. It was Saturday.
Megan had discovered some binoculars somewhere and had taken herself outside, complete with blanket and birdseed, to watch for birds. Kate's pleas for "outside too" were inspiration enough to get us both dressed and headed out the door to lay on a blanket with Megan in the front yard of our house.
How long has it been since I'd done this?
Too long. Several birds dared show themselves. Hesitantly pecking at the seed scattered on the front walk. Through the binoculars we watched, feeling almost a bit sneaky. Like spies checking in on the secret life of birds. Kate even seemed content to watch and whisper there with us on the blanket, rather than her usual two-year old chatter and non-stop energy.
A neighbor came by with his dog, fresh from a long walk in the hills that line the back of our street. We (Katie) stopped him as he passed, asking permission to pet the panting dog. What followed was a nice conversation with a neighbor who'd lived down the street from us for over a year. We'd never met. Now we knew one another's names. All because of an impromptu decision to seize my Saturday and enjoy it however came to mind. In this case, bird watching in the front yard.
Meg and I hatched a plan to continue the adventure with a family trip to feed the ducks at the little lake nearby. We rustled up some more family members to add to our fun and headed for the store to pick up some bread. Driving out of our neighborhood, the birdwatching continued as we caught site of a hawk, perched near the road on a neighbor's fence.
It seemed nature itself was beckoning us to continue our day enjoying it's pleasures.
Coming home later, I couldn't bear to be indoors after so much sunshine. It was still early in the day. Megan (ever my accomplice) and I decided it was high time to plant a garden in the back yard. And why not today? It was after all, Saturday. Sweet Saturday. Though half spent by now, it still held us in it's charm. Warm and lazy, and so gloriously unplanned. What else to do but drive to the nearest nursery (thankfully, only 1/2 mile away) and pick out some flowering bushes and a humongous bag of mulch which had to be hoisted into the car by a helpful (although filthy) employee. My hunger for something colorful had not been satisfied yet, though, so we made a stop at a garden store for something extra special. I can't quite express the feeling of wandering through those sweet-smelling, outdoor aisles. I had no idea what I was doing, or looking for, but was just glad to be there. After much admiring of those awesome colors that nature seems to do best, and smelling the dizzying scents of jasmine and roses, we finally settled on a flat of tiny snapdragons, just beginning to bud and flower a variety of pinks and oranges. Bright gardening gloves and spade made it into the cart at the last moment.
We set to work outside as the sun began to make it's way down the other side of the sky. Digging. Planting. Enjoying each other and the day we'd made for ourselves. We planted our garden until the sunlight had almost disappeared, leaving in it's wake the coolness off evening. Packing up our gardening gear (experts now, of course), we made plans to finish up the final plants a few days later.
And so another Saturday came and went. And yet this one had been special. A Saturday well spent; starting with promise and closing with a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction. I am looking forward to more of the same.