Well it seems that the bitter cold is finally behind us (I hope!) and now it feels like summer ... where on earth did spring go??!!

One of the things that screams summer to me is seeing yards full of beautiful yellow polka dots also known as dandelions.

If you spray your yard to prevent them, then you most likely don't feel the same way. Don't worry I get it. My husband hates them too, but to me they are a symbol of so much more than, "its time to mow!"

I have always loved dandelions as far back as I can remember. Don't get me wrong, I don't intend to start a "save the yellow weed campaign" or anything drastic, I just like them. When I see a yard full of dandelions, it makes me smile because they are just so darn determined! They are tough and can grow pretty much anywhere -- rocks, cracks, freshly cut yards. Since they are one of the longer flowering plants, it seems like they are around forever and just keep coming back.

I like to think that we are like dandelions. Able to adapt to whatever life throws at us and still grow. Plus, I think its safe to say that every parent strives to teach values in their children and hopes they will carry on family traditions. Dandelions are very good at that -- even after a whole generation is cut down and raked away the next one sprouts within days!

Surprisingly, dandelions have really valuable uses. They can be made into tea, wine, soup or even fried. All parts of the flower can be used and has anti inflammatory properties. Isn't that crazy? Here, something we try to get rid of could actually help us. People are like that, too. I think sometimes we overlook or push away people in our lives who don't seem to be contributing. It is the, "What are you doing for me today?" mindset and it is holding us back as a society. If we stopped demanding that everyone in our lives be impacting it somehow, we might see that they help us by simply being present.

Next time a little one brings you a bouquet of yellow weeds, remember that a weed is one of the strongest plants. It has found a way to roll with life's punches and still open each morning to greet the sun. Even though we keep cutting it and cutting it, a dandelion leaves behind seeds of hope and determination. Life is busy, stressful and just down right painful at times, so slow down when you can and stop to smell the dandelions!