Easter and new beginnings are taking on a special meaning at Parterre this year. Only a very few times in the twenty years that we’ve lived here have I ever heard an owl hooting. And then, lo and behold, we now have a great horned owl (larger than our cat, with a 4 1/2 foot wing span) nesting in the highest branches of our old gingko tree (so high that I cannot take a picture). As Easter week was approaching, her eggs hatched and today two fluffy, white owlettes can be seen with their beaks wide open awaiting their next feeding.
I like to imagine that she chose Parterre for its landscape and gardens that convey a sense of solace and peace…the five cherries popping in joyful celebration of spring,
with daffodils and scilla intermingling,
and tulips raising their faces to the sun (and anticipating their star turn in the house over Easter). Spring brings such promise, and helps remind us of the blessings small and large for which to be thankful. It is this sense of gratitude that helps me keep my equilibrium as this health crises swirls around us.
Easter lunch will be a small affair of just the two of this year (plus Clicquot, our furry feline). Which has prompted me to reflect back on last year, with twelve guests, and the little details in which I took such pleasure as we gathered around the table.
Forsythia dressing up the front courtyard urns and the front door.
Tall potted tulips greeting guests in the entry hall.
A centerpiece of garden beauties, arranged in one of my treasured French wire baskets.
Well-loved and hand-embroidered organdy linens, made in Madiera.
And why not a cracker? They’re not just for Christmas; these were custom made to match the color scheme of soft blues, purples and pinks.
On the mantle, a pair of muscari bouquets tied with a satin bow, sitting atop a William Yeoward vase… surrounded by speckled candy eggs.
For dessert, a favorite from many Easters ago…
It has been touching and enlightening to see the response of everyday Americans who are coming together, in good spirit, honoring the guidelines of our leaders and medical experts, making the most of the circumstances before us (singing from the balconies?). We’re all “in this together,” experiencing this communal moment each in our own way. May Peace be with you this Easter…