spring, winter

And back to spring again.  I made my first plant nursery visit of the season last weekend.  My personal philosophy when it comes to stuff is that every person should get three categories of stuff that are not clutter, by definition, no matter the quantity.  Mine are books, quilt fabric, and garden plants.  All other stuff is fair game for the clutter label, but not those three.
The result, of course, is that plant nurseries are dangerous places for me to go, even in February.  Things are just beginning to bloom here.  I have a clump of extremely brave species crocus that’s been blooming for a week or so now: 
Hellebore

And here are two of my purchases from Saturday:

English primrose
Actually, I bought three primroses (the others are red and gold), which come on the market here near Seattle in January every year, not just at nurseries, but even at discount and hardware stores, and another hardy cyclamen, which isn’t much to look at yet.  And eight packets of seeds.  It’s getting to be that time of year, too — the one my cat Morgan hates, because the flats take up his favorite windowsill.  He’s very good about not bothering them, though.  Except for morning glories, for some strange reason.  I suspect it’s because they’re hallucinogenic, but he finds them extremely tasty and irresistible.
And then yesterday I took a trip back to winter.  I had planned to drive up to the Paradise area up on Mt. Rainier, the only alpine part of the park that is open all year, but it was a chains-only sort of day, in spite of the sunshine here in the lowlands.  I don’t do chains unless absolutely required, and certainly not on a pleasure jaunt.
But I did make it as far as Longmire, where there was about five inches of snow on the ground when I arrived:
That’s the National Park Inn, viewed from across Longmire meadow
The beginning of the Trail of the Shadows, a short nature trail that wanders through old growth forest around the edge of the meadow
One of the hot springs that caused James Longmire to develop this area as a resort in the 1890s
The woods were incredibly beautiful
I don’t know the name of this mountain, but the view across the meadow was lovely
And then I came back down to spring. 
I have to say this is how I prefer my seasons to work.  Snow staying in the mountains where it belongs, and early blooming plants in my garden to lift my spirits.
What’s your favorite way to experience this season?