Here's what winter looks like at our house. Skis and poles and sleds leaning against the house. Great heaps of firewood stacked to the eaves. The roof piled high with snow, and icicles oozing brittlely over the edge.
I don't know if I could live somewhere that didn't get a real winter. I'm not sure what would tide me through the colder, drearier months of the year if there wasn't the crispness and brightness of snow, if it weren't for ice to skate, mounds of snow to plough and shovel, a woodstove to stoke, children with ruddy cheeks and noses shrieking as they sled and ski down hills, the adventure of blizzards and power failures, and the excuse for hot and tasty milk steamers.
January is the depth of winter for us and a month of contrasts. Sharp and cold outside, cozy and warm inside. Squintingly bright outside during the day, but with nights that are long and dark.
My kids look forward to winter all summer and fall. Of course, once it's here, they start looking forward to spring and summer. Is this what it is to be young? You're always looking forward to what's next? I must be middle-aged, because I now revel in the seasons as they pass. I am in no hurry for spring.
Here's what was underneath the snow in our yard this morning. It's almost a rink. I am pretty sure that last night's small flooding sealed the last leak. The surface is not smooth yet but it is almost totally solid. I will wait until it has stopped snowing and probably do another flood tonight, but I feel no sense of urgency now. A cold snap is coming, and we are so close.