This is one of my favorite times of the year! Springtime in the woods is breathtakingly beautiful! The redbuds are blooming, the dogwoods are almost open, wildflowers are blanketing the floor of the forest, bluebells are in full bloom. It is glorious! How I wish I could store this beauty in some way! I'm sure, though, that if I could look at it everyday the rest of my life I would begin to take it for granted. Isn't God amazing? He knows how we think so He created seasons to wake us up again to beauty.
He also gave us morel mushrooms--but only for a couple of weeks in spring. What a treat! If you've never tasted one, I'm sorry. For a week or two, we hunt them, and eat them as often as possible, and then begin to look forward to next year so we can have them again.
We love to tell the story of our greatest mushroom picking experience. It was a very long time ago. We had only lived in Nebraska a couple of years and were missing our yearly mushroom feed. As we were telling a friend how much we loved morel mushrooms and that if we were in Illinois we would be hunting them right now, he said he knew a place where they used to go hiking when he was in college that sounded like a place they might grow. We didn't even know at the time that they grew in Nebraska! Our friend didn't know either and had never tasted one, but we decided to look anyway. We each were carrying a bag just in case we found some. When we got to the place Gary was taking us we found them growing everywhere! We had never seen anything like it! We filled our bags and then took off our sweatshirts and tied the arms together to make more containers for this unexpected windfall. When we had filled everything we could find we had to stop picking. Since I'm a 'numbers' person, I just had to count them. There were over 800! The next year we returned in anticipation of another great mushroom feed only to find someone had turned the area into a subdivision. What a waste of a wonderful mushroom patch!
I took this picture with my phone of the old photo of us on that eventful day. As I said, it was a LONG time ago, but still a fresh memory during morel season.