We had a lilac hedge around the yard at the ranch. It must have been planted the same year the house was built in 1904 because they were big bushes. My little brother, Ronnie, and I would play among them. It was hard to get between them and the fence, because they were so thick. Of course, that made it a challenge — and a good hiding place.

My mom was never much of a flower person. She had a big garden. However, it was beans and beets and potatoes and corn, things that would be our groceries for the next winter. Still in the spring of the year, she would start worrying if the lilacs would bloom. Those lilacs and a few of the tulips that grew in a spot in the back yard had to be ready by Memorial Day.

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