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“When April steps aside for May..."

“When April steps aside for May,
Like Diamonds all the rain-drop glisten;
Fresh violets open every day;
To some new bird each hour we listen.”
By Lucy Larcom

In May, Hubby and I have to restrain ourselves. We check out all the pretty plants advertised in the Sunday papers and realize that we would have to dig holes for all these plants. We did give all our house plants some Neptune’s Harvest Fertilizer this past week. There was some left in the milk bottle so I poured it on some of the bulbs in our yard. We almost lost our two little pots of shamrocks to the cold one morning last week but I put some fertilizer on them so they have recovered. We know that we shouldn’t buy any tomato plants until Memorial Day weekend because they are susceptible to the cold.

Hubby and I always love to go to the opening of the Red Jacket Resort in South Yarmouth each year so, on Fri., Apr. 15, we were on the way to the Cape. It was a fairly nice day but the forecast for Saturday was terrible. We got off Route 6 and went onto Route 132. We stopped first at Kmart and I found a lovely springtime blouse for under $10. Then it was across the road to the “new” Christmas Tree Shop. I always love to walk through the seasonal items. The place had so many pretty Easter things that I succumbed and bought a couple of decorations. Then we found where the Bath and Body Shop was located at the Cape Cod Mall. I just love going into that store, especially when we go down to the South Shore Plaza, just to smell all the pretty lotions and creams.

We picked up the Cape Cod Times newspaper at the CVS store before we left the mall. We discovered that some of the restaurants were already advertising their Easter dinner menu. Then it was down to the circle near the Hyannis Airport to the Ocean State Job Lot store. Almost every time we get out of our car to go in that parking lot, a plane takes off and goes over our heads. We almost want to crouch down because the planes are so low during takeoff.

Then it was down to Papa Gino’s on Route 28. It was a Friday of the Lenten season so we thought that pizza would be a good choice. This was a mini vacation so we decided to splurge. We’d have peppers and onions for toppings. The pizza was scrumptious. We even complimented the boss on his pizza. He was pleased to receive a compliment. We picked up two cups of coffee at Dunkie’s on our way and drove to the Red Jacket.

As we drove into the parking lot, we could see that the garden workers had already planted quite a few flowering bulbs. It was windy so the tall daffodils were bouncing in the breeze. The pansies and the little Johnny-Jump-Ups looked so pretty against the dark soil. The rose bushes along the fence where we parked our car were turning green. They will produce buds in a couple of weeks, especially if we get some warm weather.

The gals at the front desk welcomed me with open arms. “Hi, Mrs. McDonough; welcome back.” (We have been going to the opening and closing weekends of the resort since the spring of 1988 so they know us well.) I was able to register quickly and then went to our usual room, overlooking the river. It was still light so we could see a few ducks on the river. As the sun was beginning to set, the sky became a beautiful orange color. Hubby took out his camera and took a few photos. They were so beautiful that they could be used as greeting cards.

Hubby then decided that he would go to the hot tub. He loves the fact that the very warm water makes his back feel great. Off he went to get changed. I got the room key and went over with him to the pool. I had my bathing suit with me but my legs were sore from getting in and out of the cars so often while shopping. While Hubby enjoyed 20 minutes in the hot tub, I sat in one of the lounge chair where I could watch him and just let my mind go blank. It was a lovely break in the hectic day. After Hubby emerged from the hot tub, we scurried across the outdoor walkway because the winds were picking up, as the weather forecast had predicted. While Hubby took a shower, I took out the two pieces of pizza that were left from dinner. We enjoyed the pizza just as much as we had earlier. We watched TV for the rest of the evening and slept for almost seven hours, several hours longer than we usually get to sleep. There will be more on a Cape trip next week.

Have you seen the Statue of Liberty “forever” stamp that the U.S. Postal Service has recently issued? The picture on the stamp is not the statue that sits on Liberty Island in New York Harbor. It is actually the Statue of Liberty that is outside the New York New York Casino in Las Vegas.

I love reading about Boston’s Swan Boats that have just returned to the lagoon in the Public Garden. This is the 135th year (1877) that the boats have been ferrying people around the lagoon. The first Swan Boats could carry only eight passengers. The newer boats hold 20 people. The cruise around the lagoon takes about 15 minutes. I must take out my Swan Boat pin that Hubby gave me quite a few years ago and wear it.

I just saw an ad with the 2011 schedule for the Boston Pops Orchestra. The Pops will be at Symphony Hall from May 19 to June 26. John Williams will conduct “Hooray for Hollywood” on May 25, 26, and 28 (the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend).

I was horrified, when I read this item in a recent issue of the Patriot Ledger. A cat named Max, who lives with his owners in San Francisco, came into his home one recent evening, with an arrow in his head, one end sticking out of his ear. The owners rushed him to a veterinary hospital where the 12-inch arrow was removed. It was an arrow from a crossbow. The cat seems to be o.k., except he now has a hole in his ear.

I was sorry to read of the unexpected death of Marilyn Wallace on Apr. 10. Marilyn was the sister of our friends George Wallace and his wife Jan. I send my sympathy to George and Jan, and to Marilyn’s other brothers: Robert and his wife Heather, and Charles. Marilyn’s funeral Mass was held in St. Ann’s Church, Neponset.

I was also sorry to read of the death of John Burke Sr. on Apr. 14. John, originally from County Mayo, Ireland, was the husband of Mary (O’Malley). I send my sympathy to Mary, to their children: John Jr., Mary Haggan, and Ann Blakeslee and to all his brothers and sisters overseas and in the U.S.

Thanks to an e-mail from Susan Goode, I learned that her Mom Ruth (Barry) Goode had passed away on Feb. 26, at age 85. Ruth was the wife of Francis X. Goode and the mother of Kathleen Munro, Eileen Johnson, Susan Veronica Gonsalves, Marjorie, Jenifer, Nina Egan, Teresa Miller, Francis Jr., and the late Ruthann. I send my belated sympathy to Ruth’s entire family.

I hope that you can access Youtube or have someone, like daughter Sue, who will send you two adorable video clips, especially if you are an animal lover. The first one Sue sent me last week was the one with a cat and three dolphins. The first dolphin put his snout up to the edge of the pool where the cat was sitting and the cat began to nuzzle the dolphin’s nose area with his head. Then two more dolphins joined in and the cat nuzzled their noses also. It was so cute to see. The second video clip was about “Cookie,” the ticklish young penguin at the Cincinnati Zoo. The clip begins with the penguin’s handler calling Cookie to come to her. Cookie plays it a little coy but finally waddles over to the handler. The handler then begins to tickle the penguin, who laughs and laughs loud penguin laughs, You can’t help laughing along with Cookie. What adorable videos!

Last Saturday grandson Brendan had planned a clean-up of Halibut Point in Rockport as his Eagle Scout project. The weather could not have been worse—rainy and cold. Brendan had taken some “before” photos earlier in the week. He also took photos as he and his helpers were working and also when the project was completed. God bless all those who helped. They were drenched and were freezing because of the low temperatures and brisk winds. It was a job well done, even with Mother Nature tossing them some terrible weather. By the way, it was at Halibut Point, more than 10 years ago, that our son Paul asked his now wife Alex to marry him so that is a special place for our family.

As many of you know, singer Celine Dion gave birth to twin boys last fall. The boys, who arrived on Oct. 23, are named Nelson and Eddy. Now I know which old-time singer Celine and her husband Rene Angelil liked.

The other day I needed stamps so I went into the post office. I asked if they had any of the Mother Teresa stamps so I bought those. Here is a wonderful thought from Mother Teresa: “God doesn’t ask that we succeed. He only asks that we try.”