This time of year is a blessing and a curse for me. I love the colder weather. I love the snow and the icicles! I love having my wood stove lit and the cozy warmth that comes from that.
I love the smell of my scented candles wafting through the air (cranberry, pine and vanilla) and the aromas of all the cooking I do this time of year.
I get this amazing and enormous feeling of accomplishment from keeping those home fires burning and having home cooked food to keep our bellies warm.
Nothing but blessings there!
The curse is shoveling that snow, clearing those icicles, hauling that wood… you get the idea. It’s cold, which is awesome because who wants to burn the wood stove in the heat of summer. But then there’s all the extra work.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m really not complaining. I’m sitting here in my warm home, just feet away from my wood stove while the wind whips and I think about what I need to do before tonight’s chance of snow and freezing rain.
My life is good. My house is warm. My beef stew is in the crock pot. My wind chimes are singing.
And this is that time of year when you’re supposed to feel warm, cozy and blessed isn’t it? That time of year when you visit family, count your blessings, bake, give and love.
I think that no matter what religion or spiritual path you choose, those are the things that we’re all looking forward to at this time of year.
I’m a Pagan so for me this time of year is about the nights getting longer and the days getting shorter and colder until that day near the end of the month (this year on the 21st) when that all stops for a moment and there’s a hush in the air just before it all turns around again. Come Winter Solstice, the sun will very slowly start growing in the sky again.
Very slowly we’ll start to see the days get longer and the sun get higher in the sky. We’ll be in the thick of Winter when the snow flies and the ice freezes everything in place.
It’s a time of hibernation and meditation, for us all to take stock in what we have and what we still want to achieve. This is the time to figure that all out.
For me, Winter is our Mother Earth in deep meditation. She seems to be lying dormant, but I think She’s just planning her Spring labor when everything will come back to life.
Until then, we lay quiet with Her. We dream, we think, we meditate… and we haul wood. Lots and lots of wood!