The vernal equinox won't arrive until March 20. But I'm already daydreaming about it.

It was around this time last year when, in just a week or two, some of us would come to the full realization of what this novel Coronavirus would mean for our lives. This wasn't just a strange virus that happens "over there." No, this would require a recalibration of the way we live, work, and play.

It was a sad irony that we were being asked to stay in our homes and/or wear masks right at the time when many start to become even more active outdoors and in our communities. Nature, itself, was waking up just as we were being asked to tuck away into another pseudo-winter.

Even though Covid-19 is still very much a reality and we need to keep following safety pre-cautions, I feel a sense of hope. We have the vaccine now, and every day more are vaccinated. There are still conflicting timelines as to when life in East Texas will truly be "back to normal," but we are way closer than we were.

After all of these months of missing the things we love, I am more grateful than ever that another one of our extraordinarily beautiful East Texas springs is on the way. This year, our hope can exist in tandem with a natural world that is also opening up. We have the hope that light is returning--both literally and metaphorically. And hopefully soon, we can move on.

Cautiously, we'll continue to do our very best to adhere to the guidelines in place to keep us safe and healthy. But please be encouraged: this, too, shall pass. We will get through this. Together.

Trust that life, warmth, hope, and a sense of normalcy will return.

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