Riding out January

riding through January - 1

01.24.18

With a week to go, January will be over.  It feels like it’s moving along rather quickly, despite the fact it often seems we’re trudging through this post-holiday month, already thinking of Spring.  I’ve been on serious pause, accomplishing none of the cleaning-my-nest projects I’d envisioned.  I may be running out of time, in this slow and quiet month, as it seems like things might, just might, be stirring out there in the winter landscape.

The light shocks me at the end of the day when the outdoor trees, lit with fairy lights, turn on in broad daylight.  You can easily see that the sun is truly rising up off the horizon to the south.  We’ve been in a non-inversion weather pattern for a week now, and it’s so cheery to see lights across the lake when I open my eyes in the morning darkness.  The stone steps to the garage have been dry and enough gravel is exposed on our sheet-of-ice road, that coming and going is relatively stress-free.  There’s been afternoon sunshine and a bright blue makes holes in the sky, and the old crusted snow looks like diamond-dusted fondant icing.  The willow trees are spectacular.  Always so beautifully graceful, they are positively glowing gold out there in the snow.  They light up this cold world, and I know their delicate feathery branches are sheltering the deer families.  They are my new favorite trees.

We’ve talked amongst ourselves about February, and how, in some years, there is no more bitter Arctic cold and not much snow.  January could have been the worst of it this year?  Is Winter losing its grip?  There’s a cold rain at the house this morning and wet snow higher up.  I’m sure new ice is forming on our road, and there’s a hint in the ten-day weather models that an Arctic cold front may come our way.  Nothing but snow/rain icons on the NOAA forecast.  Even so, I’m sure I’ll hear from Rita, any day now, that she’s spotted robins in town, and we’ll discuss whether or not they are over-wintering robins, or errant ones coming from the south.  It is likely that all this thought of Winter losing its grip is just the effect of a little sunshine last week, but, still, things could be stirring.

Advice From a Tree, by Ilan Shamir

Stand Tall and Proud
Sink your roots deeply into the Earth
Reflect the light of a greater source
Think long term
Go out on a limb
Remember your place among all living beings
Embrace with joy the changing seasons
For each yields its own abundance
The Energy and Birth of Spring
The Growth and Contentment of Summer
The Wisdom to let go of leaves in the Fall
The Rest and Quiet Renewal of Winter

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