November 18, 2014

Cold and Blustery Day

And it's only November : (

I know. . . only days ago I wrote about the first snowfall, but the snow has not stopped since I wrote that post.  And it's even colder.  And windier.  And more blowing snow.  And any hope of a reprieve from winter during November is pretty much dashed.

But as I sat on my toasty warm back porch today looking around outside, I saw some pretty neat stuff.  See, I think it's important to pay attention to the small stuff . . . the stuff you don't normally give a second thought to.  Like this pretty dark eyed junco, resting on the bannister, waiting for its turn at the feeder;

My Gretchen girl eyeing Laci down by the lakeshore...waiting to pounce on her as she comes through the yard; neither of them minding the snow at all; 

...and Laci romping through the snow;

...and this pretty cardinal staring down a woodpecker on the feeder;

...and the swans as they swoop across the lake;

...and the snow as it falls in the woods in front of my house and thanking my brother-in-law for plowing my driveway;

Yes, it's another cold and blustery day here in Southwest Michigan, but I am once again thankful that I am warm and comfortable inside my lovely home on the lake.  But Harry is traveling home from Chicago today and is stuck on a train just outside of K'Zoo.  Once he is safely home, I will be even more thankful for this day.

November 13, 2014

First Snowfall

It started early this morning . . .


. . . and it's still coming down.  

The snow has been intermittent most of the day but is supposed to pick up in intensity through the night and continue throughout the weekend.  To say Michiganders are less than excited about the onset of winter is a gross understatement.  As a matter of fact, one of Harry's nieces refuses to even acknowledge winter is here :)  And I can appreciate their feelings.  Last winter was pretty brutal and in the interest of full disclosure~~I was not here to experience it.  But having confessed to that, there is something serene and very pretty about the first snowfall of the season.  As I drove around this morning going about my usual routine, I stopped along the way and shot a few pictures.

Gretchen and Laci appeared unfazed by the snow.  This being their first real experience with the white stuff, I wasn't sure how they would react to it.  Other than being a bit more frisky than usual, they seemed to take the snow in stride.

Once the snow began to fall, I made sure all my bird feeders were full.  Most of the little song birds and the woodpeckers don't migrate; and once the snow falls heavy and blankets everything, it's hard for them to find food.

So yes, it is the beginning of another long winter, but I'm trying to stay upbeat and appreciate the serenity of this moment~~ the first snowfall.

November 6, 2014

And It's November

It sure came fast, didn't it?  Seems like summer was just beginning and all of a sudden--wham, here we are into the first week of November.

November is always a pensive month for me.  I tend to get very quiet and introspective.  Especially here in Michigan.  The days get shorter and colder.  We see less and less of the sun.  We've had our first frost.  The bounty of produce is just about gone.  Wiley Farms is getting ready to close for the season.  And when November hits, it's unmistakable that winter is right around the corner.  November also means our imminent departure from Michigan and that brings on a flood of conflicting feelings that I continue to wrestle with.

But there is also a mystical, profound beauty about November that is worth embracing.  To me it is the beginning of the period of time that the earth rests.

There are many good and beautiful things about November.  It means the holidays are right around the corner.  Warm, comforting dishes like soups, braises and stews grace my dinner table.  The Downy Woodpeckers begin to visit my feeders.  I snuggle in under a blanket, puppies at my feet, on my warm, four-season porch and delve into the wonderful books I bought/downloaded over the summer.  

November also brings about some of the most beautiful sunsets and moon rises I've ever seen.

Yes, November can be cold and dreary.  I won't argue that point.  But it also signifies the beginning of another season--winter.  And that is one of the things I love most about Michigan~~the seasons and everything that goes along with them.  Granted, we won't be here for the coldest part of winter, but I'm grateful that I will experience this beautiful, reflective time of year.