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I’ve been so happy all weekend, I just want to hug the whole, wide world.

All of it.  Everyone.

I’m so pumped with Vitamin D because the sun stayed out all day in Portland yesterday.  I went to the gym because the morning was washed-out. The sky looked dirty with sodden clouds.

Half-hour on the bike so I could finish a book, and a half-hour on the treadmill just weren’t enough.

Trust me — this is rare. Very rare.  That 60-minute combo usually finishes me off for the rest of the day.

Even hiking the incline on the treadmill didn’t seem enough. This is so rare, I can’t describe it.

On Forest Creek, Portland, OR. (Kathleen Kenna photo)

So, out to the woods.  The sun was warming the day long enough I began to hope it might linger.

This is an indication of what non-stop rain does to your brain. It’s as if you don’t trust sunshine anymore.  Welcome to Portland, OR.

By the time we reached the first trail, it was clear the sun would stay. We were giddy. We were so giddy we decided to photograph every color of flower we could find, just to stay in the forest longer.

Trillium on Forest Creek. (Hadi Dadashian photo)

We were on a trillium hunt, checking whether the tiny white petals had unfurled in this newfound warmth.

Not only had they opened, the snow had vanished, revealing a forest floor dotted with trillium clusters.

There were tiny purple wildflowers, bold pink blooms, and teensy white blossoms as small as a grain of pepper.  The shiny green leaves of holly trees seemed to glow against bright red berries.  The ever-present moss that wraps everything in our woods appeared neon green in the light filtering through the thick canopy.

All that green!

With the end of the long rains — this is only an interruption, I know — all the muddy froth pumping up the streams these past weeks, had cleared.  The water burbling all around us, in brooks and creeks and slender rivulets through the ferns, was as clear as glass.

The hike was so exhilarating after the tedium of the gym that I was “saying my gratefuls” all over the place.  I am always grateful for God’s creation, yet doubly glad, I admit, when the sun shines.

My exhilaration, like the sun, lingered too.  An email from a precious young friend, on the other side of the continent, revealed sorrow and fright in her life had been transformed by good news.

I was so glad for her, and so thankful that she’s in my life, the joy of her email only added to my happiness.

Forsythia and real, blue sky, Portland, OR. Kenna photo: Untouched.

The forsythia at the end of the trail partly captures sunny joy on Forest Creek.

I’m grateful for the reminder in my memory card that we have blue sky here.

I’m grateful that the joy of this can spread, clear across the continent to my friend.