This time of year is the most difficult for me in a lot of ways. The days are so much shorter. The house is cold a lot of the time. I know this is one long, long slog until spring. We are talking 5 months minimum on the hill. Yes, we will have a few of those January thaw days and it will warm up in April so we think we can actually do something outside in the garden but . . . never, ever plant anything before Memorial Day.
So what are the advantages of a long, dark winter? For me it gives me time to work on many different projects. I have a lot of handwork that sits idle whenever the weather is good enough for me to be outdoors. It’s a time for woodfires in both stoves and fireplaces. I love hearth cooking and that is really only fun when it’s really cold out. If I sit and watch a movie on TV that’s okay – I’m not frittering away a day when there is too much else to be done. Did I mention weaving? Weaving, weaving, weaving, nothing more to be said about that.
I love the beauty of the snow on the trees and ground, how bright it is with the moon shining. I love the sound of the snow under your feet on those cold, quiet nights with a million stars visible from the driveway. I love snoeshowing the property lines, it gives me a wider perspective of the land (and I can walk on all those wet, swampy spots that I can’t cross any other time of the year). There is bird song of a whole different kind.
So it’s now time to ease into a slower pace, enjoy family and friends and work on things left since last winter. This is what the dogs live for.