May 26, 2014

Best Memorial Day ever.

Spring in Minnesota isn't just a season; it's the fulfillment of a promise. It's the exhale after holding your breath for a little bit longer than was comfortable. It's the melodic resolution of a discordant line of music. It's the moment when you take off a pair of ill-fitting shoes or close the door behind an obnoxious house guest.

This winter was especially hard. We endured a Polar Vortex and an April blizzard. Sometimes, it seemed this day would never come.

And then it did.

This week, the whole world exploded in life. Spring was short, but it was intense.

Leaves and buds and lawns appeared out of nowhere. The flowering trees in my yard exploded in pink and white.

Pink and white flowering trees planted side by side. Clever, eh?

We had three days off from work and school. At times like this, it's hard not to be in love with the whole world.

This was the weekend I wanted to do everything.

I took Evie on her longest bike ride ever, about three miles round-trip into downtown Excelsior. We shopped. We ate. We stopped to smell flowers.

Kids are great at remembering to stop and smell the flowers.

We visited Licks Unlimited, because that's what you do on a warm day in Excelsior.

Best ice cream ever.
I used a lot of superlatives this weekend.

I ate the best salad ever. I made the best margaritas ever.

We added Mexican take-out and called it a fiesta!

A few minutes later, I made better-than-best margaritas by adding strawberries and deploying the Ninja blender.

Note: Ninja blenders are not as quiet as their name implies.

We shared our boozy superlatives with the best neighbors ever, who are not only great drinking buddies but also a healthy influence. They motivated me to sign up for a half-marathon relay in June, and to take my longest bike ride ever (24 miles) today.

This trail runs through the Twin Cities and suburbs; I'm in love.

We biked past thousands of wild violets just like this one.

Tonight, we celebrated my (best ever) mother-in-law's birthday. It was a great way to wrap up a wonderful weekend.

I'm not saying every minute was perfect. The mosquitoes arrived, and Evie got a cut on her toe, and Felix got a little cantankerous after watching too much Star Wars, and our counters got awfully sticky after all those margaritas... but I will sign up for a full summer of weekends like this one.

My favorite thing about Memorial Day weekend is that it's a beginning, the first big splash of summer. I hope it's an indicator of things to come. I hope this summer is full of active days and late nights, of bike rides and flowers and messy kitchens and muddy kids and chalk drawings on our driveway and staying up too late and going to bed completely exhausted because we did so much and it was so, so worth it.

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