Spring has finally reached Wisconsin and we've been taking full advantage of that fact. Last weekend, temperatures in Madison were in the sixties and lower seventies with plenty of sun and light to moderate breezes. Sarah and I spent plenty of time outdoors as a result.

Saturday morning, we took Dalla for a hike in one of the local state parks. Strangely enough, almost no one uses the park early on weekend morning, so when we get there it almost seems like our own private park. We spent Saturday afternoon working in the yard. Sarah pruned some of the brushy trees in our front yard. She thinks that they might have some sort of rust or other disease. I took out the hedge timmer and had a go at the yews below the picture window. Sarah's father trimmed the yews the first summer we owned the house, but we neglected to do so last year. So, I really had to take a fair amount off each bush to not only shape them, but also to get them back off the sidewalk. Dalla spent most of her time on a tie-out in the front yard menacing dogs that walked by with their people.

Saturday night, we walked over to our friends' (Sheri and Bryan) house where they cooked us dinner. We brought some granola bars that I made Friday night for dessert. It was delightful to walk there and back without needing gloves, boots, and a stocking cap.

Sunday, I worked in the yard some more. I racked part of the front yard and hauled fallen sticks and whatnot to the curb where the city will pick them up. Sarah spent part of the day working at a local bike store's sale as part of her bicycle club membership duties.

Sarah joined the Capitol Velo Club in the relatively recent past. CVC is a women's bicycling club here in Madison that does a variety of things, but Sarah joined because she was looking for riding partners for some training rides. Last night, Monday, she went on her first ride as part of the club. They rode somewhere in the range of 15-20 miles before the ride ended. She had a great time and is looking forward to her next ride with the club.

Sunday afternoon, we took Dalla hiking for a couple of hours on a segment of the Ice Age Trail near Belleville, WI. While we were hiking, there was unmistakable signs of life. Trees were budding; birds were singing; grass was greening up; people were out on the trail. We saw more people on that trail in a couple of hours on Sunday than we did on numerous hikes last fall and over the winter.

Tonight, we're going to plant seeds in pots for our garden. Hopefully, we have a better lighting system this year for our seedlings. Last year, our seedlings were spindly and nearly worthless because we didn't bother to use any grow lights. This year, we have a pair of grow lights setup to nurture the seedlings and we hope to have a better crop of veggies as a result.

We probably spoke something like twenty words to our neighbors over the winter as everyone has different schedules and the weather doesn't often permit much outdoors interaction. In the last two days, we've had conversations with the neighbors on both sides of our house. It's amazing how people just come out of the woodwork once winter recedes.