Can you feel it? The days are getting longer. There is a gentle stirring in the air. The depth and still of winter is beginning to fade. Though we have been in the thirties within the last week, there is still this quiet sense that spring is near.
There are Jonquils blooming all over our neighborhood. Two toned or a single deep yellow, they declare winter’s end and new birth. I know they must sing as the sun beckons them up out of the cold, hard soil, temps still low, but days growing in length.
Dogwood trees are preparing to blossom. The buds are yet small, but they are growing and readying for the weeks ahead. Will they make it to Masters Week or bloom long before Easter this year?
This is a mystery tree to me. I don’t have a clue to it’s name. But, it blooms early. This tree was in bloom last week before a deep, cold snap. Many blooms were lost, but just as many more have popped open this week.
By week’s end, I’m sure there will be dusting of pollen on our cars, mailboxes and front porch steps. If you live further north, you aren’t privy to these harbingers of spring just yet. But, it won’t be long!
I hear people saying what a “long, cold winter” this has been. The cold temperatures did start earlier than normal, and the sliver of red was shorter in the thermometer fairly often. But, I have to tell you that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this winter. I often struggle. I feel a sluggishness that I can’t shake. I sleep much longer than I would like. I get off schedule. I stay up late. I can’t get up in the morning. It’s tough.
I usually begin to feel better around mid-February or March. As look back on this winter, though, I realize that it’s been an unusually easy winter for me. I’ve given some thought to what may have helped me this winter. The only thing that has been different this winter from other winters is that I spent a week in the sun just before Thanksgiving. And I wonder: did that splash of warmth and solar energy help me through?
My skin usually becomes very, very, very dry by the end of December. Though we had a longer, colder, drier winter than normal, my skin didn’t really feel dry until about two weeks ago (around the end of January). Was that because I spent a week in shorts on the beach a few months before? I think it may have been a factor, but I can’t be sure.
I have to mention that I’ve had an emotional boost this winter, as well. I have taken several trips to spend extended time with close friends. We’ve shared laughter, late hours, websites, drinks, children and tears. While this has been incredible fun, rather than it helping me through winter, I think the opposite: my better winter simply helped me have more fun when doing my visiting. And I’m so thankful for all of those special times. Maybe our trip to Destin even helped me enjoy my friends?
While spring is close and I’m excited about warm temperatures and the burst of sun that will be here soon, my winter has been quite mild and I’m not as anxious as normal to wave it good-bye.
How about you? Do you struggle in the winter? How have you fared this year?