I watch with excitement as our crepe myrtle trees bloom among the azaleas and as the cherry blossoms flutter like snow in the wind. The trees, bushes, and flowers “dress up” in spring. The smell of spring flowers and mowed grass is inviting, and even washing down the yellow pollen dust on my driveway is not bothersome. I love this season.

The waking of the season began a tradition with my Nana and Mother: spring shopping! We did not have a lot of money, but each spring they would purchase new outfits and new shoes for us children.

Today in our family room sits a plethora of family photos in all shapes and sizes on various tables.

Among all the pictures sits a worn, black-and-white photo of me at age ten with my little brother, all dressed up. My brother is wearing a cool-looking two-piece suit, crisp button-down shirt, and bow tie. I have on a dress layered over crinoline, a sweater, white gloves, a purse swinging from my arm, and white patent leather shoes with lace-trimmed white socks. I remember that dress and how special I felt. However, I also remember that by the end of that day, my tomboy antics got the best of me and I had torn a good portion of the crinoline while attacking a steel fence! My mother was not pleased.

I observed this spring shopping tradition with our four children and now our seven grandchildren. The pure joy of passing on the spring shopping tradition is received quite well!  We have sent packages with Sunday best outfits, casual attire, or both. There have been good choices. There are times when just a “shopping spree gift envelope” arrives in the mail. Either way, a family tradition prevailed and memories made for lasting pictures!