Milkweed Time–The Harvest Fairy Lives

Seed 1

Dear Friends,

As this year comes to a close, I have a confession to make—promise you won’t tell? I never really grew up. I just pretend that I have. Most of the time, I manage to act like an adult, but there is a certain time of year that sends me straight back to my childhood. It’s milkweed time—my Harvest Fairy time.

Milkweed 9Milkweeds grow on the ditch banks all over Colorado’s Front Range. When I was little, my love of this special weed was born. You see, milkweeds are a BLAST to play with. You can turn the plant’s empty pods into boats and sail them down ditches, but best of all is the fact that the pods explode into balls of fluff and send their seeds floating through the air. The puffy parachutes feel as soft as kitten fur, and I love watching them fly up toward the clouds. To me, milkweed time is pure magic.

I’m not sure when I came up with the idea of being the “Harvest Fairy,” but it’s a bit of nonsensical fun that I’ve enjoyed for the past thirty-some years. Every fall, I pick a sparkling autumn day to go for a walk. As I stroll, I collect the puffed-out milkweed pods and scatter their fluff on the wind. It’s so much fun to fill the air with a slurry of white seeds and watch them floating high and far. Now days, I just stroll and scatter, but when I was younger, my ritual was much more elaborate. On Harvest Fairy Day, I’d make myself a crown of dried leaves and grasses and go along the ditch banks earnestly scattering the milkweed seed. Of course, the practice of making crowns took a hard hit one year when I ended up with beetles in my hair—you see, being the Harvest Fairy has a few risks…

Milkweed 8(Now, let me pause for a moment and insert a disclaimer. I’m a farmer’s daughter, and I KNOW the confession that I’ve scattered weed seed is a horrible confession to make. With the utmost embarrassment, I’ll admit that I’ve probably single-handedly seeded my entire county with milkweed over the years. I know I should probably give up my milkweed fun—any sensible person would—but the problem is that deep down, I’m not really sensible and I don’t think I ever could be. You’d think I’d grow out of my silly ways, but I haven’t yet. Whenever I vow to act more sensibly, I spot a puffy milkweed plant just waiting for the Harvest Fairy’s touch. I’ve finally decided that I’m a lost cause. The Harvest Fairy is too deeply ingrained in me to be yanked out. I’m afraid it’s here to stay.)

seed 5Ever since I became ill, I try to make sure not to miss milkweed time. It’s the one day a year when my problems shrink away and I revel in pure nonsense. This year, I had a blast on my fairy walk. There was just the right amount of breeze to really send the seeds sailing. As I watched them floating away, a thought entered my head. If I had to, could I ever get the seeds back into the pod? I watched them floating above treetops and falling down into ditches. There was no way that I could regather the seeds, and I knew it. Even as I pondered this reality, the realization came that words are like seeds floating on the breeze. Once they’re released, they can’t be reclaimed.

seed 4As I continued to think, I picked another pod and sent more seeds sailing. As I watched the fluff zooming away, I realized that some words are beautiful and helpful. Some are mean and cruel. Each has the potential to make something grow. Happiness. Encouragement. Joy. Self-confidence. Anger. Worthlessness. Depression. Despair.

I scattered more milkweed fluff into the air, and as I did, I realized that I’m the Harvest Fairy every day of my life. Everything I speak or do influences those around me. I either brighten their day or make it more difficult. It’s my choice how I am going to affect other people.

seed 6This time, as I finished my Harvest Fairy day, I felt as if it meant more than just a spot of harmless fun. This time, there seemed to be an object lesson—and even a warning—embedded in my milkweed revelry. What kind of seed am I spreading? What is going to grow? Ever since this year’s milkweed time, I’ve been praying that each seed I send floating will be full of kindness and that it will cause joy to spring up wherever it lands. As I enter a new year, that’s my resolution. That’s what I want the most.

Happy New Year, my friends! May 2016 bring each of us a deeper revelation of Christ and His love!

“Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.” Proverbs 16:24

 

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12 thoughts on “Milkweed Time–The Harvest Fairy Lives

  1. Cherrilynn Bisbano

    Happy New Year! I loved this story. I say, “Free the Faries” every year. You should write a children’s book based on this story. Each fairy is a seed of kindness and one thinks she looses her kindness and goes looking for it, only to realize it was always in her heart because her Creator placed it there. Just a suggestion.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, Cherrilynn!! That’s an AWESOME suggestion!! I think your idea would make a BEAUTIFUL story! I only have one twist to put on your idea–I think you should be the one to write it! I’d love to read a Fairy story written by you!! I know it would be really fantastic!!!! 🙂 I hope you have a wonderful New Year’s Day, my friend! I also hope that this year brings you blessings heaped upon blessings!!! Thank you for all of your kind words and all of your encouragement!

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  2. You’re so much fun, Cherrilynn!! 🙂 I’m afraid I’m a bit swamped right now, but I know your idea would make a terrific tale!!! I really love fairy stories!!! 🙂 I hope you have a wonderful New Year’s Day!!! 🙂

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  3. Corrin Hentzel

    You have the most lovely way of putting a positive spin in everything you write! I marvel at the responses you write to people who comment on your blog and/or Facebook page. I’m so glad I was able to become your friend through FB this year! What fun it would be to sit and visit with you over a cup of tea with the Colorado mountains in the background!
    I, too, love milkweed! One day my husband I were taking a meandering drive through the countryside. I spied a clump of milkweed and wanted to take some of the pods to work on Monday to share with my first grade students. Unfortunately, I forgot we put the pods in the trunk. Several weeks later I opened the trunk and discovered an explosion of milkweed seeds. They were clinging everywhere in the trunk. It took forever to clean out the furry little seeds. I am certain my husband was not thinking how beautiful the fluff was as he helped vacuum out the trunk!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh, Corrin!! I’m so glad that we became friends!!! You are such a joy and a delight! I can’t do it now, but someday when I’m completely well, I’d LOVE to have tea with you! Wouldn’t that be fun??? And the Colorado mountains are so lovely–they really would make the perfect backdrop! 🙂 I loved your story about the milkweed pods in your trunk!! It made me laugh so hard–especially since I did somewhat the same thing once. When I was in quarantine, I wasn’t able to be in the same room with my nephews. They simply knew me as the “auntie behind the glass.” I could only talk to them through a closed window. Because of our limited communication, I tried to write the kiddos letters so they could get to know me. One autumn, I had the bright idea of sending them milkweed pods in the mail. After I got home from my fairy walk, I put some collected pods in a cupboard. I was determined to mail them off–but I ended up forgetting they were there and mailing the letters without them. Weeks later, I opened the cupboard and POOF!!! Fluff everywhere. It was such a mess to clean up! LOL!! I hope you have a really wonderful New Year, Corrin!! Thanks so much for being my friend. It’s an honor and privilege to know you! 🙂

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  4. Renette Steele

    Thank you Danele for always giving us such inspirational blogs! They always bring joy to my heart!
    For me it was Dandelions (which i am allergic to) i Loved to blow on them and watch them fly away, making up stories of where the seed might land, like in some far away country or beside a friend or family member i was missing. My imagination could really get carried away.

    It is so true about words, And they can take deep root so quickly, grow weeds that are so hard to pull or flowers that bloom in all their glory for the world to see. May all your seeds bring beautiful blooms of love for the world to see! (much like your blogs already do)

    Love and Hugs
    Many Blessings on the new Year!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Renette, thank you so much for your beautiful comment! I love the thought of dandelion fluff landing beside someone I was missing–telling them that I was thinking of them. What a wonderful word picture! I like the way you think! I’m so glad that you are enjoying my blogs! That makes me very happy! I hope you have a terrific New Year! Blessings and hugs right back at ya!

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  5. What a delightful, yet soul searching blog, Danele. You’re spot on about our words. The old prophet nature in me wants to back folks in a corner and speak hell-fire and damnation. But Mama was right, you can catch lots more flies with honey than with salt.

    You remind us of that old proverb every week with your phenomenal story-telling talents that you turn to teach us real life values. Happy New Year, dear friend. May God bless you with heaps of joy and good health in 2016.

    DiAne

    Liked by 1 person

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