This is the best part of spring in North Carolina. The beautiful, blooming azaleas. Azaleas are part of the -ea (pronounced ‘eeya’) family of flowering shrubs. No self-respecting southerner would have less than 2 of these plants in his yard at any given time. We have 3 of the 5 listed here. They are as follows; azaleas, camelias, hydrangeas, magnolias, and gardenias. Begonias don’t count as they are, technically, a flower, not a shrub. Wisteria is a vine and magnolia is actually a tree, but work with me here. I think that about does it but I’m sure that if I forgot one, you all will let me know:) Anyway, the azaleas in my yard are white and pink and we have about 6 shrubs abutting our cottage. We also have a camelia and 2 hydrangeas in the back. I enjoyed them quite well today as I was outside for some of it cutting back the monkey grass for new growth. The temperature was a warm 80 degrees, but there was a nice breeze, so it was great for the kids to play out while I worked away. The air smelled clean and I drew in deep breaths often to enjoy it. The sky was cloudy, but allowed enough rays of sunlight to dance through so that the light was perfect, not too bright. Is it any wonder that gardening can be as relaxing and fulfilling as knitting. Hope you all have a wonderful day like mine!