The snow melted before long and signs of spring started to appear. The walks to and from school were more pleasant since we no longer had to trudge through the snow and the wind had lost its icy bite.
School was beginning to be something we looked forward to everyday since we had learned to know the other children. Nancy Summy and Simon Lee were the other children in my grade. Nancy was a very sweet little girl and we became very good friends almost immediately. In the next grade was Daniel Lee, LV, Emma (pronounced Emmy)Hostetler, and Susie Kinsinger.
Susie was lots of fun but somehow Emma and I didn't start out very well. One of the first days she informed me that she is very glad she doesn't have my name. She would much rather have a nice humble name like she does. She made fun of my clothes. There was nothing wrong with them except they were the ones I used to wear in the community we had moved from, so they looked different from the Somerset ones. If it wouldn't have been for Nancy and Susie, school life would have been miserable those first few weeks.
Things were also starting to feel right in our new home. John and I were always glad when we rounded that last bend in the road on the way home from school and could see our house. It was an ugly olive green with yellow gables. Along the front there was a green porch. There was a black wrought iron railing all the way around and along the sides of the steps. I knew the railing must have been intended for us since there were large "S" s every few feet and made it seem personalized since our last name started with an S. In the front yard there were two very tall Arborvitae trees and an huge old chestnut tree. There was a spruce tree and several apple and pear trees. At the back of the house there was a bright blue porch. We used this one the most since it was only a few inches off the ground compared to the ten feet of the front porch. A few yards from the back porch there were 60 pine trees growing in a double row. Their branches almost touched the ground. If we slipped through them it was nice between the two rows of trees. The branches didn't grow there and the ground was covered with pine needles. It made a perfect playhouse. At the end of this double row of trees there was a real playhouse and a sandbox.
Beside our house there was a very old house. It was full of antiques and things that former owners had left behind. There was a loft with a rickety old stairway leading up to it. There were old dust laden bunches of dried herbs hanging from the rafters. They had obviously been there for years. There were lots of other old curious things there too. We had lots of fun exploring this building when ever we had permission to do so.
In front of this old house the yard was filled with flowers. There were roses bushes, mountain laurels, lilacs, lilies, rhododendrons, bleeding hearts and many more. It seemed there was something growing everywhere you looked on those 15 acres.
Things were getting into a routine and we were enjoying our new home very much.