Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Lilacs May 28, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 6:59 AM
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EACH MAY HE GIFTS me with the intoxicating scent of spring. A bouquet of lilacs, gathered from a bush in the park up the hill.

Lilac, 1 - Copy

Typically my husband stops on his way home from work, pulls a jacknife from the pocket of his greasy work pants, sometimes stands on the tips of his Red Wing work shoes to saw tough, determined stems clinging to a gnarly bush.

Lilac, close-up

But this year, on the eve he drove down the gravel road into the park, he found the lilacs still tight-closed, not yet ready to unfurl in the chill of a late spring.

Lilac, close-up 2 - Copy

A few days later, en route home from dinner out, I noticed lilacs in full bloom. Instead of turning into our driveway, Randy aimed uphill toward the park, entering past a group of teens playing Frisbee golf.

Lilac, 5 - Copy

I can only imagine their chatter as they witnessed us, in our white mini van, parked beside the lilac bush, Randy cutting lilac stems, me shooting photos.

Lilac, on table 1 - Copy

They do not understand yet—what it means to see your hardworking husband walk through the door each May with an armful of  lilacs, the spring blooms filling your home with the heady scent of love.

© Copyright 2013 Audrey Kletscher Helbling

 

24 Responses to “Lilacs”

  1. M. Hatzel Says:

    My husband sent me flowers a couple of days ago from work: pictures he took from his Blackberry of a patch of crocus. The plants are few and far between nowadays and where we live, so a photo would suffice. I smile every time I think about it; some guys just get it, don’t they?

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      That is so sweet of your husband to think of you and to send that photo of crocuses. What a sweet, sweet surprise that must have been. Gotta really love a thoughtful man like that.

  2. You have such a loving romantic for a spouse – love that as well as the beautiful captures:) Happy Tuesday!

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      It’s interesting that you should term him a “loving romantic.” I don’t think he really thinks of these things as being romantic. He just knows what will make me happy. It’s sometimes more about the thought and love than the actual “whatever.”

  3. So lovely, that tradition. I love the lilacs, too. That is something I truly love about Minnesota – they’re everywhere!! We saw so many coming and going from The Cities this past weekend.

  4. rachaelhanel Says:

    You are lucky! I would love to receive a bouquet of lilacs 🙂 They are my very favorite. Each year I beg my husband to plant a lilac in our yard, but he doesn’t. I guess I should just do it myself some day! I got him to plant one at our first house but then we moved within the year. I hope the new owners enjoy it, because I didn’t get much chance to!

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Email a link to this post to your husband. Will that work?

      If we had room in our yard for a lilac bush, we’d have one. You need to buy a lilac bush. Just do it.

      • rachaelhanel Says:

        I’m quite inept with plants. Is this a good time of year to plant a lilac? I received an azalea as a gift and am looking for a place to plant it. It can’t live in it’s pot forever.

      • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

        I wish I could answer your question about the lilacs and advise you on azalea planting. But I can’t. I’d ask my floral designer sister or call a local gardening center. Good luck.

  5. Aww! Lovely tradition. Lovely flowers. Lovely couple.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Thank you. I can’t even recall when this tradition started. But if Randy stopped bringing me lilacs every spring, I would miss his bouquets.

  6. Carol Allis Says:

    I can think of no better testimony to an enduring marriage than a husband who brings his wife lilacs every spring ….

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Thank you, Carol. That is such a sweet thought. We’ve been married for thirty-one years.

  7. Jackie Says:

    It is a heavenly scent that’s for sure, how sweet of Randy to remember each year to bring you Lilacs. My neighbor has two large bushes on the side of their home closest to my bedroom window and right next to my clothes lines. She has always told me to feel free to indulge….and I do 🙂

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Oh, how wonderful to have lilacs scenting your bedroom and perfuming the air as you hang laundry.

  8. We have been watching our lone Lilac all Spring–it is protesting the cold. Mon night husband threw on his coat and went to walk the yard (checking on the newly planted grass progress). I was folding clothes in our bedroom and helping pack his suitcase for the week–I opened our bedroom window and asked about the grass–as he neared the Lilac tree, we both noticed time is forcing those blossoms open–he broke some branches and presented them to me at the window. Now in a green canning jar in my kitchen also! Nothing like a good husband and bouquet of Lilacs.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Another thoughtful husband. Randy walked up to the park last evening and brought me another bouquet of lilacs. 🙂

  9. Beth Ann Says:

    In all my travels I somehow missed this post!!! I am so glad I went back and found it!!!! They are so beautiful. I planted a small lilac here a couple of years ago and I missed the couple of tiny blooms it had this year. 😦 Maybe next year ! I have memories of lilacs on the table when I grew up—–great memory! Thanks for rekindling that memory!

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      You are welcome. Lilacs make such an impression, probably because they are among the first flowers of spring, after a looooooooong winter.


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