On Friday, when Honeydew and Keith returned from moving the first load of bees into the almonds, they gave me a present.

That’s an almond branch, resting in a jar of water.  Excuse the horrendous backlighting – I leave photography to professionals like Brother Dear and Tony Bynum.

Anyway, Honeydew brought the branch home as a fun way to predict the big almond bloom – a glorious, pink-and-white event in Northern California.  On Friday afternoon, the buds were closed up tight, but after a weekend of toasty indoor temperatures, and plenty of sunlight streaming through the kitchen window, the buds are opening.

All weekend, we discussed when the full bloom may occur, exactly when all the bees will be moved into the orchards, if my mom and Sissy will get to see said bloom when they come to visit, etc, etc, etc, all the while looking at the almond branch for clues.

And then on Sunday morning, I was in Maggie’s nursery, changing a diaper and singing off key, when I heard a cry of surprised glee emanating from the kitchen.  Had we won the Publisher’s Clearinghouse sweepstakes?  Had a Doritos delivery truck crashed in the front yard?  Had Honeydew opened the freezer and seen the oft-requested-never-before-purchased-gallon-of-mint-chocolate-chip-ice-cream I’d tucked away?


He discovered that we actually have an almond tree in our yard.

And it’s blooming!

So much for the branch!  But I think I’ll keep it a while longer.  Looks pretty on the windowsill.  And if there’s a way to bring spring indoors, I’ll take it!

Today, Honeydew and Keith again left before dawn to move bees, and they’ll be working late into the night to get them all safely tucked away into the orchards.  Pictures of that process tomorrow.

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