Even though the first day of spring doesn't officially come until Wednesday, I know that spring is truly here. How, you might ask? I went for a walk on Saturday in Mandan, ND, where we were visiting my husband's former in-laws. It was a beautiful day - the temperature reached 68 degrees that day and it was a lovely walk. Warm, sunny and with a slight breeze. The air felt and smelled wonderful. There were many birds chirping, and the folks we visited had a tree out front of their house which was filled with cedar waxwings. Busy little birds eating the dried crab apples left on the tree branches. I saw many other cedar waxwings as I was walking - the town seemed to be filled with them. But, the reason I know spring is here is because of the other birds I saw - robins!! Every year, this is my "true" sign of spring. When the robins come back I know it's really here. I greeted the first robin I saw with delight and surprise. I actually didn't expect to see any robins and I definitely wasn't looking for them. It was a feeling of pure pleasure to experience seeing not only one robin, but six of them by the time my walk was finished. They were bobbing around on the ground, searching I'm sure for nesting material, and their bright orange chests announcing their presence. I smiled for a long time after sighting the first one. So now, no matter what the weather brings, like the snow flurries we drove through on the way home today, I know that spring is here and winter is behind us. I can't wait for the greening of the earth, the buds, the blossoms, the animals and birds; the richness of life to spring forth!