March isn’t very nice to girls
It steals their hats and blows their curls
It huffs and puffs with such a noise
I think that March was made for boys

I’m not particularly drawn to ceramics, especially porcelain figurines, but this little girl has been sitting on my dresser for as long as I can remember.  She holds a special place in my heart, and I often looked upon her with envy of her curls, full skirt and beautiful bonnet.  I usually imagine her standing on a low hilltop in England.  The verse comes from the booklet connected to her by the string around her waist, and it goes through my mind like a song every March, all month long.  It seems sadly inappropriate today, as the still, 80-degree day creeps over us, and as usual, I am vaguely annoyed at the implication that girls don’t enjoy a good, blustery day.

I called Mom to find out where the girl came from, and she confirmed that she was a gift for me when I was tiny.  Mom is pretty sure she was given to me by my Great-Grandmother, who was very much into collectibles.  I have to watch myself, because I inherited that love of collectibles (if not of the same types of items), and it would be all too easy to pick up all the trinkets I fall in love with, filling my home to the brim.  Instead, I buy none.  I do have my few Willow Tree figurines, given by family members who know I love them, but that’s almost it.  In fact, when it came time to stage the house, Mom had difficulty coming up with enough items to do it.  I suppose clutter has been my display of choice.  (A decorating technique I am determined not to let back into my life.)

[Edited to add (a few hours later): I discovered just how much that figurine means to me this afternoon.  I left it on the stairs to take back up to our bedroom after taking the above photo and forgot to put it away before the school bus arrived.  It was knocked down by a child who shall remain nameless, and who was so remorseful (having broken into sobs at the precise moment I did) that I cannot hold him responsible in the least.  It’s a clean break, right at the waist; I’ll glue her back together, of course, but I can’t help feeling she’ll never be quite the same again.]

Anyway, to March.  It certainly came in like a lion for us.  On March 1, Jason and I awoke in a hotel in East Memphis to find ice an inch thick covering the freeways and welcoming us on our journey across country.  Thankfully, that day was the worst of the weather we encountered in our six-day drive.  We hit thirteen states including our beginning and end points of Georgia and Washington, saw three sets of friends (in Oklahoma, Wyoming, and Washington), and stayed in hotels in Memphis, Denver, and Boise.  We encountered high winds, hundreds of giant, awe-inspiring windmills, and incredible vistas.  I spent my birthday embracing the altitude sickness that has now plagued me both times I’ve made rapid high altitude gains, but it was worth it, for I got new yarn (appropriately – for March – at a store called LampShoppe) and got to spend the evening with a friend of nine years, who I’ve never met in person before.

Driving across country is a pain, especially in winter, when concerns of passable mountain passes are paramount, and you have faulty heat in the car and no snow tires or chains.  But…it is fun.  It is an adventure.  The stark contrasts of land and vegetation from region to region are marvelous and could never be seen or appreciated from a jet plane.  The opportunity for good conversation with your driving partner is endless, and, if you’re the passenger, you get to crochet, read, or sleep to your heart’s content.

As you might have guessed, the purpose of the drive was to deposit Jason in Seattle, where he can focus locally on his job hunt.  It is going well, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed for him.  I’m back in Atlanta with the boys, and it looks like we’ll have a contract on the house soon.

In like a lion, out like a lamb.  Sounds good.